what is ipa beer

Golden in appearance with a frothy head, bubbles rising to the top of the glass – who doesn’t love a nice cold pint of beer? It’s estimated that 8.5 billion pints are drunk in the UK every year. Whether you drink yours down the pub or in your living room after work, it’s clear us Brits can’t get enough of this tipple. 

One such style of beer you may be familiar with is an IPA. It stands for Indian pale ale and is a beverage that has seen somewhat of a resurgence in recent years. 

Want to learn more about IPA? Here is our guide on what is IPA beer to tell you more. 

The History Of IPA

Back in the late 1700s, England held a large colonial presence in India. Those who travelled between the two countries had a huge appetite for beer. The trouble was, the voyage from England to India was fraught with difficulty when it came to maintaining the quality of the beer. Especially given it was long before the days of refrigeration!

At first, the beer would remain chilled as the ships sailed through the cool waters of the Atlantic Ocean. But as they got towards Africa, the temperature of the sea rose considerably essentially cooking the beer to a frothy mess. Once it eventually reached India, the beer tasted terrible because it had spoiled. 

IPA was developed as a solution to the problem. It involved brewing a pale ale with higher levels of hops and alcohol to help preserve the flavour of the beer. More sugar was also added to achieve a higher alcohol content, which meant the beer wouldn’t spoil. 

IPA Resurgence

You’re probably wondering how a beer style from hundreds of years ago suddenly became popular again. It was actually down to the discovery of craft beer in the late 20th century in America that saw brewers seek out old styles of beer.

It was at this point that people rediscovered IPA before the rest of the world then caught on. IPA remains in demand with no signs of slowing down. 

IPA Types

  • Belgian
  • Black
  • Double
  • East Coast
  • English
  • Grapefruit
  • Session
  • Triple
  • West Coast

IPA Characteristics

ipa

The characteristic of IPA that sets it apart from regular beer is the intense hoppy flavour.

As well as being typically low in alcohol, IPAs also have a bitter aroma. Though depending on where the variety was produced, it can also have a vast array of tasting notes. These vary from tropical fruits, oranges and limes, right through to coconut and pepper.

Overall, IPA is a very diverse beer style which again is one of the reasons why it’s so popular, especially on the craft beer circuit.

Purchase IPA Beer

Ready to try some IPA for yourself? Here at Bring Me Drink, we sell a wide range of beers including IPA. You can either try IPA on its own or pair with foods that are rich or spicy such as burgers or tacos. Alternatively, IPA can be used as a palate cleanser too.

However you enjoy your IPA, we want to know about it! Be sure to let us know your favourite IPA varieties. You can leave us a comment below, or follow us on Facebook or Instagram.