That dog has a fat vagina. Thanks of course to Ralph Steadman, the twisted gentleman who did the artwork for all of Flying Dog’s labels and cartons, and if you don’t know him by name, you know his art from various places and didn’t know who it was done by. Notably, Ralph did the illustrations for stories by Hunter S. Thompson, including Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas. Even more hilarious by “Gonzo” Thompson, if that’s even possible, is his tale of being sent to cover the Kentucky Derby one year, accompanied by a shy and timid young illustrator, who Thompson promptly drugged and corrupted the morals of… that was Ralph Steadman’s first trip to America, in more ways than one.
Now you know why he makes art like that.
On to the beer, but first about the carton which a sixer of these comes in: the funny stuff is on the bottom, make sure to empty the carton before checking it out. This one has an account of Flying Dog ringing up Steadman and asking him to make an illustration for this beer. Steadman: “It took you 20 years to give me a name like Raging Bitch.” Finally, if you’ve seen the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life” then you’ll get a great laugh out of FD’s reason to recycle the bottles and carton. That’s right, Zuzu, that’s right.
The beer itself, i don’t much like it. The color is great, a deep mellow orangey amber. The smell is great, smells like plenty o’ hops here. The trouble is with Belgium. By now you know that i don’t like Belgian beer, and this is a “Belgian Style IPA”. The concept is ridiculous on the face of it, and inside the glass, the non-Belgian parts of this beer are good. The body is heavy and lip-smacky, the hops are indeed floral and fruity.
But to me, Belgian beers taste like dust. Really, like you picked something up that’s covered with dust and licked it. It’s a musty corrupt taste, like that grayish-blackish stuff in the corner of your basement that you’re not sure if it’s a mold or a fungus and aren’t sure you want to know. Well, that’s what Belgium tastes like to me, and it’s what wipes this beer out.
The alk content is a thrilling 8.3% and that has it’s uses, like just before bedtime, but why not just call up the Makumba for that, which is tastier and higher alk, and a Double IPA with no bits of Belgium in it at all.
So the tale of the Raging Bitch is great beer potential, yet brought down by the sinister influence of Belgium. Truly, without the Belgian element this beer would be highly rated. But with the musty rotting-mushroom taste which apparently drives them wild in Bruges, all i can do is rate this one at a humble 4.4