IPA faceoff: Troegs vs. Magic Hat vs. Iron Hill

March 28, 2007


Me=hophead. I drink IPAs and double IPAs almost exclusivly. I’m sure my taste will taper off and I’ll get the thirst for a wheat beer when the heat hits, but right now I can’t get enough hops.

Magic Hat H.I.P.A.: Their beers have invaded every corner of Philly, and while they’re all quality beers, most of them lack characteristics that make them stand out from the crowd… they’re just “safe” beers. So before even trying the HIPA it had some marks against it. I also don’t appreciate it when brewers try to be so witty with beer labels so one can’t figure out what STYLE of beer is in the damn bottle. Magic Hat is the worst for this. “Roxy Rolls“? WTF? Apparently they like to keep their styles a mystery. I was pleasantly surprised after opening a few. Nothing really outstanding, but it has a really nice, flowery hop aroma (warrior hops)- different than any brew I’ve had.

Troegs Nugget Nectar: A seasonal brew from H’burg. @ 7.5% ABV. $39/case in Philly. I couldn’t figure out why they brew this seasonal when they already have an IPA (Hopback), then a friend informed me that this actually isn’t an IPA but either a pilsener or an amber ale. It’s basically Hopback with a bunch of Nugget, Warrior and Tomahawk hops thrown in. Very comparable to the Magic hat: both had just a bit of maltiness, a very powerful but nice hop nose, and both masked the alcohol well. Not so for the…

Iron Hill Hopilicious. I’ve had three jugs (I refuse to use the word “growler”. It’s a friggin jug. OK?) of this seasonal from the Media, PA location and was surprised that it’s “only” 7.2%, because it has a very strong alcohol taste. Lot’s of malt like a double IPA and not as much hop aroma as the name suggests.



  1. Good work, your articles are very interesting, i am glad that i googled your blog

  2. The other 2 would have to be excellent to knock the Troegs. I like Iron Hill and Magic Hat but most of their beers can not come close to a similar Troegs beer. I think Hats best beer is the Hex right now

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