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Beer culture is coming of age. At any store, restaurant, bar, or friend's house you can now find at least a few good brews. In fact, there seem to be so many new beers, breweries and bars it's difficult to separate the good, the bad, and the mediocre.

If you're going spend $10 on one beer, what should you buy? If you're going to drive 2 hours to check out a brewery, what's worth your time? If you're going to plan a Friday night, what has a good selection and friendly atmosphere? We're here to help you answer these questions.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

PU 240 Imperial IPA

PU 240 Imperial IPA is a Double or Imperial American India Pale Ale (DIPA) from the Auburn Alehouse Brewery & Restaurant in Auburn, California.

DIPAs were born on the West Coast in the early 1990's. Rogue of Oregon had an early version of a DIPA as did Blind Pig Brewing of San Diego. Blind Pig is now defunct and the brewmaster moved to Northern California to open Russian River Brewing Company in Santa Rosa, which created one of the most popular (and top ranked on Beer Advocate) DIPA's - Pliny the Elder.
DIPAs are known for their big hop profile and big ABV.

I bought this at Taylor's Market for $4.69 for a 22oz bottle. It has an ABVof 8.69%.

It pours a light copper with a thick fluffy, off-white head and leaves decent lacings when drank. The aroma is pleasing - sweet citrus and florals, notes of pine, and hints of the big ABV. The first taste is good with the caramel and sweet ctirus and slightly floral hops up front and a subtle, bitter grapefruit hops finish. The bitter finish is good and doesn't linger long. The alcohol flavor is there, but there's not much warming.

Overall, I like it. However, as far as a DIPA goes, it falls a bit short. Many of the DIPAs I've had are a little more complex, with a stronger aroma and taste. It has an IPA flavor with the ABV of a DIPA. I recommend you Try It because it does have some good attributes.

This is the 3rd Auburn Alehouse brew I've rated. Fool's Gold I recommended a Skip It and Gold Digger I recommnded a Try It. So far, none of the brews, including PU 240 stand out. They aren't bad beers, but in a State full of amazing DIPAs, IPAs, and PAs, it's hard to compete.

From friends and reviews it seems like the Auburn Alehouse changed: when folks first tried it a few years ago it was great, but now the recipes and brews seem a bit off. "I remember it tasting better" is a quote I've heard and read.


  1. This is one of the best Imperial IPAs around. Ranks right there with Pliny, Ruination or any other great DIPA. Auburn Alehouse's regular IPA is also great. These are the brews I judge other DIPAs and IPAs against and I've tried tons all through California, Oregon and Washington.

  2. I agree that this beer was much better a few years ago. Not sure what happened, but it really lacks in complexity and ive noticed it becoming cloyingly sweet. Too much caramel malt. Batches vary and it really is a hit or miss. Saying this compares to Pliny is just silly. While Pliny is pretty much the standard of DIPAs, there are many DIPAs (and single IPAs) that smoke pliny these days. I can name several right now-

    Heady Topper
    Surly Abrasive
    Bootleggers Knuckle Sandwich
    Kern River Citra DIPA
    Alpine Exponential Hoppiness
    Bells Hopslam
    Avery Maharaja
    Ballast Point Sculpin