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Saint Arnold Art Car IPA by Tony

 

Art Car IPA

Saint Arnold Brewing Company

Houston, TX

IPA

ABV: 7.1%

IBUs: 55

Packaging: Draft, 12oz. Cans

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I remember the first time I saw Art Car IPA almost like it was yesterday. I was at the Art Car parade in 2015, and I saw dozens of people walking around with a bright blue can that I didn’t recognize. Head on a swivel, noticing them more and more, I told my wife I had to get one, but the time had passed. It was time to go, and somebody told me they weren’t selling beer anymore. Crushed, I still thought it was so cool that Saint Arnold made a beer to honor this Houston tradition, and it’s had a special place in my mind since then.

Fast forward almost two years, and I’m in the garage trying to fix my wife’s headlight. I knew I wanted a beer, and when I opened up my fridge, Art Car IPA smiled at me almost as to say, “You’re fixing the car, dude. I’m the one.” Bingo, Art Car IPA it is.

Saint Arnold Art Car IPA smells of fruity hops, and the taste holds the same notes. It starts off pleasantly crisp, has a nice malt backbone to stand up to the bitterness, and it ends with a satisfying fruity, almost tropical hop flavor.

Art Car IPA reminds me a bit of Lone Pint Yellow Rose on the nose, but it’s got a bit more bitterness on the aftertaste.

I’m giving Art Car IPA a 4.5 because it’s good. Damn good. It’s easily one of the best IPAs in Houston, and as a matter of fact, it made our list of the top 5. Check out our blind taste test of Houston’s best IPAs.

Art Cars are bold, vibrant, expressive machines that stand out like a sore thumb, and this Art Car IPA is no different. It has the picture perfect clear, golden color, with a perfect, foamy-white head, and that head paints the side of the glass with lace eloquently with each sip. The mouthfeel is smooth with medium body, and it has the perfect carbonation. Quite literally, a piece of artwork that stands out among the crowd.

I’ve had this one a dozen times, so I knew it’d be terrific. Nothing new here.

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Art Car IPA sports unique artwork. Most of Saint Arnold’s labels feature the Patron Saint inside of a circle (used to be an oval), but this one’s a bit different. It has a bright blue graffiti background with a stylized saint in the center, no circle or oval. The saint is flanked by bold red and yellow wild-style graffiti lettering at the top and bottom. The artwork was designed by Houston’s own street art legend, Mario Enrique Figueroa, Jr., aka GONZO247.

Art Car IPA is available pretty much everywhere good beer is sold. It’s only available in cans and on draft, though, and it was one of Saint Arnold’s first few to be canned, marking a shift in consumer expectations. Anyhow, you can find it all over. Here’s a long list of places, in case you’re on the hunt.

Art Car IPA is terrific. It’s an easy go-to for me, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. What’d you think of Art Car IPA? Does it deserve The Mayor’s Cup, or does it fall way short of an honorable mention? Let us know in the comments below? Beers to you, Houston.

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Tony D
tony.d@beerchronicle.com

Tony's an artist that loves craft brew almost as much as he does Houston. He's worked in the oil industry and owns a few small businesses. Tony isn't picky when it comes to beer types, as long as it's refreshing and sessionable.

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