Finally, in a long succession of canned IPAs from Ocean, New Jersey’s craft powerhouse Kane Brewing Company, comes one of its kind that doesn’t taste like freshly-cracked black pepper to me. Something is very wrong with my taste buds, I’m told, but that’s for another time. Mosaic Punch, canned earlier this month by Kane, is a tasty little number brewed with peach, mango, lactose, and copious amounts of Mosaic, Galaxy and Citra hops. All the smells, all the flavors.
Mosaic Punch pours a hazy, completely opaque, almost brownish-orange color, and you can thank the lactose in large part for that view. The addition of milk sugar gives this IPA its creamy look and mouthfeel, and brings about a bit of balance in a beer that has a lot going on. I’ve been a fan of the few IPAs that I’ve had that incorporate lactose into their bill of ingredients, so I was excited that Kane took a swing at it here. The smell of Mosaic Punch as it breaks free from its recyclable prison and dives into the glass is just bombastic. The aroma of peach and mango, along with that of the perfectly complimentary trio of hops used here is so inviting.
This full-bodied beer leaves a foamy ring, known as lacing, around the inside of your glass, letting you know that it’s not a watered-down mess of an IPA. Not being a fan of overwhelming bitterness, I love an IPA that consists of a variety of ingredients, and Mosaic Punch fits the bill in good fashion. It treats the tip of the tongue to a fruity, slightly milky show, but still delivers the slightly bitter sting of the threesome of hop varieties on the backend. The hop profile here works well with the fruit combination, making for an intelligent brew. Mosaic hops, for which the beer was named, are a fairly new breed on the block, and lend themselves to a fruity IPA, while Citra and Galaxy back them up with similar notes.
I acquired this particular can via trade with a gracious new beer buddy, and although I’m drinking it nearly three weeks from its canning date, it’s still outstanding. I can’t even imagine how much better it could be right from the source, fresh after brewing. The 6.6% ABV is nicely warming, especially as my old bones grow colder with the New Jersey weather. It’s hard not to get romantic about great beer, isn’t it?
I highly recommend Mosaic Punch if you can pick it up in cans or on tap on location at the brewery. There’s a fantastic balance in this beer between the hoppiness and the duo of fruits on which it was fermented, and I love the use of lactose which I think is underused in this type of beer overall. Kane is massively popular and their can releases bring devoted lines of craft beer fans to its nondescript tasting room on weekends, so act quickly with this and other brews of theirs. Until next time, bottoms up!