Maybe it is the yeast or the water, but every gulp of an Odell brew leaves behind a distinct taste that ties it to the Fort Collins, Colorado brewery. Its hoppier beers are often highly dank and resinous, it’s year-round beers are equally solid (I’m particularly fond of the newish Rupture Fresh Grind Ale), but it’s the brewery’s limited releases that really shine.
The brewery’s Cellar Series began in 2006 and features bold takes on many different styles. Odell recently moved the series out of 25-oz. bottles and began releasing them in 12-oz. bottles instead. While this raised the price per ounce, it also made the Cellar Series offerings more approachable by lowering the volume (most of these beers are higher in ABV) and overall price point.
The second of the Cellar Series beers to be released in 12-oz. bottles is Odell’s Triple IPA Fee Fi Fo Fum. The beer features an awesome combination of Chinook, Mosaic and Azacca hops, and promises to be “unapologetically big” in its flavor.
While an enjoyable and ambitious offering, Fee Fi Fo Fum is ultimately just too sweet for me to get real excited about.”
Right off the pour, Fee Fi Fo Fum tries to make good on that promise, filling the room with sweet tropical fruit aromas. Citrus and sticky dank resinous notes waft from the glass as well. The aroma comes off a cushy white head, sitting on top of the orange golden body. Despite the tropical fruit nose and orange color, this is no hazy juice bomb—Odell’s triple IPA pours an almost totally clear pint.
Fee Fi Fo Fum’s opening taste is absolutely tropical fruit—not quite pineapple, but maybe more mango. Soon, these light flavors give way to dank resin and bitterness. At 80 IBUs it should be a bitter beer; as a triple IPA it sort of needs to be. Triple IPAs can become very sweet, almost syrupy, this is particularly common as the ABV rises. Fee Fi Fo Fum rings in at 11.1% ABV and steers towards the sweet side of the spectrum despite those IBUs.
As the beer warms the sweetness continues to play up, which is a shame because the flavors present are interesting and distinct, even while still clearly tasting like an Odell brewed beer. The low carbonation also allows the syrupy qualities to creep forward.
While an enjoyable and ambitious offering, Fee Fi Fo Fum is ultimately just too sweet for me to get real excited about. Sticking with this hop bill, plus backing down the ABV and maltiness might make for a more interesting beer. Even still, I’ll still seek out Odell’s next Cellar Series release.