ACME California IPA

There will always be a place in our hearts for Jessica Rabbit, Ariel the mermaid, Daphne of Scooby Doo, Pocahontas of Pocahontas, and, of course, Betty and/or Veronica.  They were beautiful, we were young, and they had many adventures to take us on, lessons to teach us, and imaginations and dreams to inspire.  Of course, now that we’re older we’ve had to find a way to work our beloved animated beauties into something that fits into our new lives as drinkers and appreciators of beer.

So we now turn to the likes of the Miller High Life Girl on the Moon, the St. Pauli Girl, and the lessor known ACME IPA girl.  The High Life Girl is tidy, proper, well dressed, and lady like.  She’s the presentable sort that you’d want to bring home to meet the parents.  And you do so because it makes them happy.  And then on the other end of that spectrum we have the St. Pauli Girl who certainly wins the trophy date award.  But seeing as how the St. Pauli district of Hamburg was (is?) a red light district, you’d better just return the smile and move on.

Then there is the ACME IPA girl.

Put simply, she’s golden, literally and figuratively, not unlike the great state which she aptly represents. She’s cute, no doubt, as she can hold your attention as well as she can hold a beer while performing daring physical feats.  Something all of us have attempted, few successfully.  And look at that smile. She’s completely comfortable with herself, a trait which is more attractive than any High Life Girl prudishness, St. Pauli Girl wink, or Jessica Rabbit hip sway.  Both the ACME IPA Girl and her beer stand well above others, and both are keepers.

And now the Specs.

Beer Name: ACME California IPA

Style: American IPA

ABV: 6.5%

Brewery: North Coast Brewing Co., Fort Bragg, CA

How Served: The bottle rode around in my car for about an hour, then I reversed microwaved it in the freezer for about 20 minutes.  Poured it into a lager/pint glass hybrid and enjoyed.

Aroma: A combination of sweet light malts and floral hops.  So mostly a sweet bread smell with a subdued hop aroma.

Appearance: A moderately rigorous pour created a frothy build up, just off white in color, and I was happy when it stayed around for awhile.  The beer color was pure copper and small amounts of carbonation tingled up the glass.  A beautiful beer in appearance.

Taste: That sweet aroma smoothly transitions into the dry and bitter hop taste characteristic of IPAs, complete with just the right amount of malt flavor underneath.  At 55 IBUs it’s not on the crazy scale of bitterness, but it is enough to leave you a bit puckered after a sip.

Mouthfeel: This IPA is light to medium in body.  The carbonation knows exactly when to stay out of the way and when to kick in, meaning once you first take a sip, the flavor is not interrupted, and as you swallow the carbonation collects perfectly in the back of your mouth to flush it all down.  It’d make a good pallet cleanser.

Overall: I was a fan from the beginning and remain so today.  This beer belongs in the top ten list of American IPAs (and there are hundreds and hundreds of US IPAs out there.)  ACME IPA may be a bit heavy both in body and in taste to continue drinking for an extended period of time, so its more ideal as a meal time beverage than it is, say, a game time crusher.

And by the way, the ACME IPA Girl has no official name.  Ever since her inception during World War II she’s just been referred to as “the swinging girl.”  North Coast Brewing acquired the rights to her in the 90s and have yet to call her Shirley or anything.  So if any of you have name suggestions, please share.



Filed under Beer Reviews, Marketing & Branding

5 responses to “ACME California IPA

  1. louie toro

    goldie the flying beer girl!

  2. I am the graphic designer for North Coast Brewing and your comments about the Acme IPA girl, illustrated by Eric Grbich, are fun to read. North Coast Brewing is wondering whether it would be ok to run a brief excerpt from your blog post and then link to the post from their website: It would be in the news and reviews section. Let me know if this would be ok with you. Thanks, Theresa Whitehill

    • Karina

      Teresa! How did you get such a cool job? I rep North Coast in Oklahoma! I am also a “graphic designer” and can’t wait to design my first wine or beer bottle!!

  3. Barnaby Starr

    matilda…because she’s a waltzing Matilda in the air!

  4. This is a delightful IPA that is now much harder for me to find in Connecticut, I really miss it, so balanced!

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