Hip hops

illustration by hayley doshay

If you sip suds, you'd have to be a complete idiot not to know that IPA stands for India pale ale, a style that in America is typically a blend of hops that impart booming floral, citrus or bitter character. Sacramentans sure love them some IPA beers, which makes February a big month for 916 hopheads. There's good stuff from all sorts of breweries, including hot-ticket brews by Drake’s Brewing—it has a Hopocalypse double and triple IPA this month—and, of course, Russian River Brewing Company's Pliny the Younger, a piney, dry triple that's considered the best beer in the world by some (it's tasty, but naturally overrated). On the local front, Knee Deep Brewing Co. and Berryessa Brewing Co. excel at brewing hoppy beers and will surely enter the IPA fray during beer week in San Francisco and, at the end of the month, here in Sac. As they say: Hop to it.

Beer: Harvest Ale (English barley wine aged in port casks)
Brewer: J.W. Lees & Co.
Where: The Davis Beer Shoppe, 211 G Street in Davis; (530) 756-5212

First ever Red Headed Step Child double IPA festival
Saturday, February 9; at Samuel Horne's Tavern, 719 Sutter Street in Folsom; (916) 293-8207; 11:30 p.m.; no cover