Fair State and Modern Times Crossed 2,000 Miles for This Near-Perfect IPAJanuary 21, 2019
After Fair State Brewing Cooperative released its collaboration with San Diego’s Modern Times, the brewery went from stewards of traditional European brews to Minneapolis’ most desired haze factory. Spirit Foul preempted the release of blockbuster haze-bombs like Mirror Universe, Obscurity of Purpose, and Mr. Falcon, and the demand for the once-limited beer has pushed it into the brewery’s seasonal rotation. Spirit Foul’s 2018 run recently ended, but expect this Minnesota-California juicebox to return in late-2019.
Before we get into the beer itself, hats off to Little & Company for creating one of the most resonant can designs in recent memory. Try seeing this polka dot can on a shelf and not bringing a few home. Dumped into a Spiegelau glass, Spirit Foul is a matte pineapple-orange that looks as thick as porridge. A generous cloud of foam gathers at the top.
Fair State and Modern Times crossed 2,000 miles to conjure this spectacle of hoppy juiciness, and it was worth every inch of distance.”
Take a nosedive into this fruit bowl. Spirit Foul smells like freshly peeled grapefruit. The aroma leads with pithy must and gives way to Citra and Mosaic fruitiness. Bergamot, mandarin orange, and clementine all abound before you’ve even lifted the rim to your lips. It’s tough to believe, on scent alone, this isn’t a double IPA.
The body is far less turbid than the opaque appearance might lead you to believe. Spirit Foul’s hidden master stroke is the addition of flaked oats, which makes the beer beautifully soft. The bitter edge of the hops is rounded and controlled, letting the juiciness shine. Is Spirit Foul a good source for your daily allotment of vitamin C? It sure tastes like it.
Fair State and Modern Times crossed 2,000 miles to conjure this spectacle of hoppy juiciness, and it was worth every inch of distance. The New England-style IPA trend may calcify and fade, and drinkers may move on to new innovations, but Spirit Foul will remain as an emblem of the greatness the style can achieve.