By Kevin Burns, Beer Columnist

Saranac_imperial_ipa2 Saranac Imperial IPA is produced by the F.X. Matt Brewing Company and Saranac brand stirs up mixed feelings amongst the many self-proclaimed "beer geeks."

While all knowledgeable beer fans recognize the contributions that the Matt family have made, there are some who love this line of beer and others who think the line is nothing more than average. 

This particular beer pours a dark amber color with a finger width, off-white head. The aroma is sort of cloudy, with nothing more than muddled hops and malt showing through. The body has some malt up front with a very faint sweetness before the beer starts to become very dry. 

A decent amount of hops come in through the middle and the finish is very dry and lingers for quite awhile. 

Overall, this is a very nice Imperial IPA. While the beer is bone-dry it is not overwhelming at all and the nose is the only aspect of the beer that holds it back from being an all-time great. A very, very good beer.    

The beer's bone dry, very hoppy body coupled with the high ABV call for a spicy, yet hearty dish. The first thing that popped into my mind is chili, although this can go very well with spicy Thai or Mexican dishes. 

Producer: F.X. Matt Brewing Company
ABV: 8.5%
Price: $2.25 (12 oz. Bottle)
Rating:  40
(4 out of 5 | Delicious, Distinctive