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Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA Batch 2 Nectaron

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Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA Batch 2 Nectaron

Whole Foods Market Brewing (sorely outdated site)

Galleria/Post Oak
Hazy IPA
ABV: 6.6%
IBUs: 24
Packaging: Draft, 4 pack 16 ounce cans

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After trying the OG batch and being pleasantly surprised, I felt like I owed Chris Shelton and the Whole Foods Market on Post Oak another shot. The DL Double was good, and so was the OG Wholistic Hazy.

This visit gave me a chance to briefly meet Chris, grab two more batches of Wholistic Hazy IPA, some Haze of Our Lives, and a little bonus bottle of Side Eye Sour – their Strong Belgian Ale and aged it for 14 months in dessert wine barrels with Brettanomyces and Pediococcus. Barrels were provided by William Chris Vineyards. I made sure to put the bottle on the bottom of the bag and stacked the cans around it to prevent light from hitting it since light penetrating bottles is bad news. Here are 4 lies you may have been told about skunked beer, and some of them has to do with bottles.

Anyhow, quite a nice trip to the grocery store.

Chris explained to me that there were two versions of this beer for this go-round. One dry-hopped exclusively with Nectaron Oil and the other with Nectaron hops. Everything else about the beers were the exact same.

Interesting…

He went on to say that the oil version came out a little less expressive than expected, and while he liked the results, he explained that he wanted to tinker more with the oil product in a lighter style like a Pilsner.

I N T E R E S T I N G . . .

Based on his feedback, I cracked the oil one first.

I’ll start by saying that I’m super impressed at the nose alone. The first crack and hiss of the can exploded with citrusy hop notes, and thems the kinds I likes.

The artwork on the can is the same as the previous batch, and it all seems to align with the WFMB 3.0 visual identity of new, simple, clean, farmhouse-esque label design. It’s legit the same label, but the oil version has a little hot pink sticker on it to set it apart from the OG batch. 

The pour was bright, glowing yellow color. Slightly opaque, but not ultra-thick-hazy. Kinda like a fresh Grisette. The head was dense white foam, bubbly and smooth, but it diminished pretty quickly into delicately spotty lacing.

Peachy, grapefruity, pineappley notes explode on the aroma. With a beak like mine, it’s a really a tremendous beer to just sniff. Nectaron hops are a New Zealand strain that is a sister of Waimea. This hop was developed in partnership with New Zealand’s Plant & Food Research, and it took more than 17 years before the full release! I guess it pays to wait. 

Each sip of Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA oil version was just as good as the aroma. The slightly thin and lightly carbonated body made for a refreshing sip. This balanced all the fruitiness for a crusher of a beer at 6.6%. Yikes. Dangerous. Peach at the beginning, pineapple in the middle and end, and the bitterness was like grapefruit lite – the flavor was there, but the bitterness was so clean and calm.

 

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It’s like a session hazy except for the ABV. Wild.

Some berry and green grape skin, winey, sort of notes lingered on my palette after the sip. Love those New Zealand hops.

Then I cracked into the regular version, and it was a no-brainer what Chris was saying about the subtlety of the Nectaron oil. Wow. The version without the oil is MUCH more expressive right out the gate. The one photographed was the regular version, not the lighter hop oil version.

It also poured a hair darker, a hair more opaque, and just a hair more of everything visually. The head was the same, as was the lacing, but all other things considered were just one more notch +

The nose of the regular version of Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA is still citrusy, but it’s a bit more dank and spicy – woody, even. I love it.

Each sip of Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA regular version was similar to the nose. More. More peachy brightness, more pineapple lushness, and more grapefruity pith on the finish. There’s even a note of floral, spicy, woody, earthiness that lingers alongside the berry and grape notes long after the sip. There’s a brightness in each sip that’s a bit more noticeable in the Nectaron oil version, but wow, they’re both really good.

I’m surprised at how similar yet how different they both are. These beers will both be served at the CBC, and I can’t wait to hear more of the feedback about them both.

They’re both great beers, and they tasted super fresh with a delicate balance of hop burn. It can be overbearing when this much hops are used in a beer, but Shelton seems to have dialed in well. 

They’re both super expressive despite Chris’ comments about subtlety.

Most of all, they’re both worth a visit to Whole Foods Market Brewing. I’d love to see James and Chris collab. Dave’s gone off to San Diego to Seek Beer, but a three way collab one day would be even cooler. At the end of the day, all of these three guys make terrific beer, and they’ve all mashed in some great product at 1700 Post Oak – no doubt.

I really appreciate the subtlety of the oil version, though. This isn’t a one vs the other comparison, or as Jim Collins would say it, this isn’t an or. It’s an and. Both are delicious in their own right.

This is an unusual review in the sense that I’m comparing two beers the whole way through, so to compare it to any other beers seems weird.

As far as I know, Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA (regardless of batch number, hop, oil, etc.,) can only be found at the Post Oak location of Whole Foods.

 

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Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA Batch 2 Nectaron
  • My Overall Rating
4.3

Whole Foods Market Brewing Wholistic Hazy IPA Batch 2 Nectaron

Overall, these are both great beers. The oil version, albeit the same ABV and almost everything else, drinks so much lighter and brighter. It’s like a heavy pale ale almost. While the other version is much thicker and more bold, like a big DIPA. It’s so interesting how this technique can change everything.

Sending
User Review
3.5 (2 votes)

Beers to you, Houston! 🍻

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Anthony Gorrity
tony.d@beerchronicle.com

Anthony's a Houston native, a Creative Strategist at https://ledgeloungers.com/, an adjunct instructor of Visual Communication at Lone Star College, and a UH Coog that loves good beer almost as much as he does his city. Anthony lives to help others and that's found a home helping some of the coolest breweries on earth with creative and marketing projects that can be seen on our Portfolio page. Fueled by hoppy lagers, sessionable IPAs, and gangster rap, he's ticked his way through H-Town, rocking the most unusual Nikes he can find. When he's not writing for us, he's with his family or very patiently rooting for the Rockets.

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