BD: Dave, you’re well aware that the current craft beer trend is all about big hops, but you’ve been making War Dog for quite some time now- Where did the inspiration to develop a beer like War Dog come from?
DO: I had my first Imperial IPA, called Frank, at Pizza Port- Carlsbad many years ago and really dug the beer. I immediately started playing with the style and various hop varietals; slowly but surely coming to the recipe that is War Dog today.
BD: The War Dog Imperial IPA uses quite a bit of some high-end hops to create the signature hop note we’ve come to love- Can you elaborate on how much you’re using in a typical batch, and what the scoop is on these hops?
DO: We’re tossing in a boatload, about 60lbs total of Citra, Simcoe, and Amarillo hops in a full batch of War Dog, which are a hot commodity these days. They’re expensive and tricky to get a hold of, and the beer takes longer than normal to brew- but damn is it worth it!
BD: Why do you think War Dog Imperial IPA has found a niche among local consumers that stop by the Draft House or Big Dog's Cafe & Casino on Sahara? A lot of people are scared of big, overly-hopped beers…
DO: I actually feel that for a big beer, War Dog has great balance, and is pretty approachable,with hearty citrus and floral hop notes- Definitely a fine candidate for less experienced big beer drinkers to give the style a shot.