The weather’s warming up to perfectly delightful, balmy conditions. While much of the country is still shoveling out their driveways, we here in sunny Florida are strolling around in shorts and wondering where we stored our bottles of Coppertone.
Warm days and cool nights. One can understand why so many flock to our state to vacation and to retire. Well, spring-time, anyway. Come summer and we’ll all be cursing the sweltering, hellish, wet wool blanket that is our humidity. But for now, it’s beautiful outside.
Another thing Florida’s got going for it is a proliferation of good breweries. Floridians also understand what beer works best with our weather and craft their beverages to suit the oft-fickle meteorology of the Sunshine State.
It’s not quite open-furnace-door-hot outside yet, so my mood’s not really thinking about pale wheat ale or a crisp pilsner to quench the thirst. No, by the time my office day is done and the air temp is right around the high-60s, I’ll be looking for a nicely-balanced Florida IPA.
A breezy evening feels like it needs some citrus and tropical fruit hops, solid malt for a sweet counterpoint and just enough booze in it to keep you warm. Case in point: Funky Buddha Hop Gun. The local flyboys out of NAS Pensacola might love this just for the Top Gun-inspired packaging. A cool label is one thing, but the beer inside is even better.
Now, I dig everything Funky Buddha has done so far. They have a nice vibe, their beer suits the sensibilities of all walks of Floridians, they’re not afraid to make daring seasonals (remember the Sweet Potato Casserole Ale, anyone?) and they simply make consistently good beer. For a chill, laid-back, pleasant weather night I prefer an unfussy, straight forward product and Hop Gun is scratching me right where I itch.
Hazy honey in color with a good head that settles to cap present for the life of the liquid, Hop Gun’s scents fly from citrus rind to papaya and melon. Where I mentioned before how it’s an unfussy beer, it certainly doesn’t mean it lacks for flavor! Passion fruit seed, orange, pine and finely-subdued spearmint flavors are rounded out by caramel malt. Perfectly bitter and slightly sweet all at once, this IPA is slightly oily with bright, lively carbonation on the mouth feel and carries a long finish.
Come to Florida for the weather, stay for the beer! Funky Buddha Hop Gun is perfect now and just as great year-round.