In all the fields, in all the worlds, inside all the dreaming heads; I doubt many have thought to make a strawberry and basil sour IPA.
Maltgarden did though and it's certainly something that comes from the realms of imagination, although who knows who's.
Strawberry and basil is an interesting enough combination, with sweet strawberries and fragrant, earthy basil making a curious addition to a sour IPA which is of itself quite unsual.
It smells like a mojito, that's the main impression I get from the first whiff of it. The herby aroma isn't quite as minty as the cocktail, but it's got the same fresh and clean smell.
It pours quite a dirty brown: to continue the cocktail analogy, it's the colour of a dirty martini. The aroma becomes sweeter on the pour and there's a hint of hops to it too, leaving a crisp white head.
The flavour is sour, but not excessively so. It's predominantly the herbal basil that steals the show, which creates a grassy, bittersweet taste that's complimented by a hint of sweetness from the strawberries, but nothing that I would describe as fruity.
The aftertaste brings a little bitterness from the hops, but it remains remarkably similar to a herby cocktail. Feels like it's a rare example of a beer that would be best served over ice.
The can is very Bob Ross, with the swathes of colour that actually very accurately represent the proportion of basil and strawberry. Lots of green, not much red. Lots of basil, not much strawberry.
The bold pink wrap underneath the paintbrush-style lines of colour make it a very vivid can that certainly catches the eye, especially with the white bottom and simple wording on the front.
Proof that even imagination can make simple things work well.
If a quasi-cocktail IPA sounds like something you'll be interested in then you can head over to Honest Brew by clicking the link on this post where members can get it for £5.12 (non-members will need to pay £5.59)