Sa·vant: saˈvänt,sə, noun, a learned person, especially a distinguished scientist.
This is Nate Lanier of Tree House Brewing Co. in Monson, Mass. He is the head brewer and living barometer of the brews that Tree House shares with the very privileged public. As with most craft brewery beginnings, Tree House started as a home brewing journey. Then, in 2012, the brewery was opened, co-founded by Nate Lanier, Damien Goudreau and Dean Rohan. Of the 125 different beers on record for Tree House, there are four IPAs that have well established the regarded brewery: Sap, Green, Haze, and the one that is the subject of this review, Julius.
As I understand it to be, Julius is the lifeblood of operations at Tree House Brewing Co. This 6.8 percent ABV American India pale ale is brought forth by a classified and proprietary blend of hops that has yet to have been denied or confirmed by Lanier. To avoid any misguided speculation or pontification on what makes it great, I’ll just say that Julius is a very well-executed recipe. And, despite the fact that many self-proclaimed descriptors that breweries place on their products are not perfect, the one pint can of Julius absolutely dials in on the flavor profile.
You are fortunate to be holding Tree House Brewing Company’s flagship American IPA: Julius. Julius is a bright, tropical beer filled with flavors and aromas of peach, mango, passionfruit, and a mélange of citrus. It is gentle on the palate while still incredibly hop saturated. It is the result of our uncompromising dedication to fresh, progressive, delightful beer. We hope you enjoy it with laughter, good cheer, and in the company of those you love.
The pour into a Spiegelau IPA glass results in a hazy and bright orange pop of color. Sitting aloft the veritable sun-like liquid is a two finger and well aerated froth of creamy white hues. As for the aroma of Julius, I’ve never come across an India pale ale that was quite as forward. Strong notes of tropical and citrus fruit leap out of the can upon breaking the seal, and everything only intensifies once poured. Reducing the fragrance to its simplest impressions, it is sweet and tropical relationship of one part peach and one part mango.
The profile both in aroma and flavor leans slightly more towards rind than the actual fruit. The mouthfeel is very light and lively and each sip finishes crisp, clean, and slightly dry. The medium body of flavors in Julius is dominated by a tropical and hop medley. The dominating perception of this beer is a fruity focal point, encircled by a hop & earthly peripheral. My only issue regarding overall balance is the presence of the touted “mélange of citrus”. The subtlety and complexity of this beer would be better appreciated if the tangerine presence was reduced, and the IBU scale was given a bit more attention.