No Corporate Beer Reviews: Permanent Funeral

Beer: Permanent Funeral
Brewery: 3 Floyds Brewing Company (Munster, IN)
Style: IPA – Imperial/ Double
10.5% ABV / 100 IBU

The landscape of metal collaboration brews has widened considerably since 3 Floyds dropped its Pig Destroyer collaboration beer Permanent Funeral in 2013. Permanent Funeral is now part of the 3 Floyds core line-up and was succeeded by a second 3 Floyds x PxDx collaboration, the equally hoppy but less boozy lactose IPA Army of Hops. With a third yet-to-be-announced 3 Floyds Pig Destroyer beer on the way, why revisit the OG Permanent Funeral? Two reasons: It’s now available in bottles and cans, and 3 Floyds had added a few states to its distribution footprint.

As with the band itself, Permanent Funeral is beguiling and hard to categorize. Based on its hop profile (flavor and aroma) and gravity, it certainly looks like a double IPA on paper. And that’s what the Great American Beer Festival judged it as, when it won a silver medal in 2013. But 3 Floyds actually considers this to be a hoppy pale ale, and it achieves the expected malt-hop balance of that style. What’s peculiar is that for a 100 (!) IBU beer, it’s not actually that bitter. A typical American pale ale is often in the 40 IBU range, so thanks to science and the dark arts, Permanent Funeral drinks more like a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Of course, the best possible way to experience Permanent Funeral is to have a member of Pig Destroyer deliver it straight to your door. My review bottle came from Blake Harrison with advice and a warning: “Drink fresh and watch out for this.” At 10.5% ABV, Permanent Funeral will put some hair on your chest, which is probably why beer geek Scott Hull pushed to dial things back with the 7.3% ABV Army of Hops. Including this year Adroit Theory imperial milk stout, Pig Destroyer hasn’t lent its name to a bad beer yet, but with its smooth drinkability and gorgeous tropical nose, Permanent Funeral has set the bar impossibly high.

For more info, check out 3 Floyds here.