IPA or Specialty Grain?

Just wondering about a recent beer I tried. Ghostfish Kick Step IPA is a gluten free beer from this brewery that does all gluten free product. So they tried to make an IPA using malted millet and rice. Not good, funky aroma and taste, flat. So if you make an IPA from nontraditional ingredients, should it be listed as an IPA? Or specialty grain?

Right now, there’s no general consensus on that…some would prefer put it in IPA since the style is listed, others will put it in Specialty Grains…IMO I would put it in IPA with tags Gluten-Free, Specialty Grains, Rice , Millet… I,M not a fan at at of these “throw everything in here” styles because of 1 ingredient, especially when the beer have a particular style. It’s like we could have a “Barrel-Aged Beer” style and put every barrel-aged beers in there instead of their respective styles…

F*** T*** S*** - put it in specialty grains

1 Like

I would go with specialty grains

1 Like

I would also go specialty grains I think, what with it having zero barley in it.

1 Like

I’d say that if the speciality grain characteristics are the most obvious feature it should go down in that category, whilst if the hop characteristics are to the forefront still it should go down as an IPA. Either way, make sure you add the tags as per the Viper’s post.

1 Like


Specialty Grain.

IPA as marketed? This is the same argument that we keep going around and around about. Someone just told me yesterday that we should put it in the style category the brewery intended and then hammer it in our review if it doesn’t belong. :unamused:

1 Like

Zero hops…at least in the taste

It kind of sucked in both styles

1 Like

I agree.

I can agree with both sides, but have always leaned slightly towards Brewers intent. They brewed it to be an IPA. They market it as an IPA more so than they do as a gluten free product as far as the name goes. I don’t know… It has been a difficult brewery to admin, that’s for sure.

There was little of any IPA in there…

If that IPA was the same shitty beer but made with regular malt, would you have put it on IPA or you would have put it as golden ale because there was Zero hop? My take is the brewer markets it as a specialty grain IPA. IPA being a real style and specialty grain sure ain’t a real style but a “throw everything here style” for beers often marketed only as a “Millet and Rice beer” without style specification. I rather put the beer in its own style and rate it badly if it sucks than putting it in a style where it will be mixed with totally different beers. It’s the same with the actual Fruit beer and Spicy/Herb/Vegetable, they are throw-in styles for beers with lack of description… if there’ an IPA with mango added, I much rather see it listed in IPAs than in in fruit beer (lost with black fruited beers, sours fruited beers). I put them in a Fruit beer category only if the beer description doesn’t specify any real style.

I disagree with you here. If the fruit / spice / herb / grain character is dominant, it should be in those categories, that’s what they’re for. I don’t see it as a catch all style at all. If your mango IPA tastes mostly of mango, it’s a fruit beer to me. But we’ll see where this whole style discussion goes. Hope to see descriptors added to the styles like some proposed, like IPA - Fruit, etc., that would certainly put an end to discussions like this :wink: