I like hops. I'm just not crazy for IPAs. They’re kinda boring, and they tend to have the piney hop flavor that overwhelms anything else that may be going on with the beer. Don’t get me wrong; I’ll gladly drink one. It’s just that there are usually many other styles I’d reach for first.
Then you have Imperial (or “double”) IPAs. All the flavors are more robust (including the hop notes), but they’re typically more balanced. However, the balance comes from all the sweetness (which can be a bit much) produced along with the high alcohol content. What to do?
Have an Odell Extra Special Red! It’s definitely in the rotation as one of my favorite summer beers, and my appreciation for it continues to grow. I guess you could call it an Imperial Red Ale, coming in at about 7.8%. It’s hoppy, but without the pine flavor of IPAs or the Überdryness that comes from, well, most dry-hopped beers. It's full-flavored, and at about $10 per 6 pack it’s not much more expensive than your average micro. I’ve seen it at Gomer’s, Red X, and Lukas.