baobubba (455) - Starkville, Mississippi, USA - JAN 10, 2003
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Serious resin aroma (cedar, pine, little citrus), little grass, sweetened by caramel. Sweet flavor with a nice bitterness. Good and somewhat unique.
igneous1 (1503) - Davenport, Iowa, USA - JAN 8, 2003
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2002...very much a copper color (little lighter than the lost coast i just tried), but i wouldnt call this IPA ’clear’. head is not light beige and creamy and not to thick, but what is there lingers and leaves some great sheeting. aroma is initially pure pine, but as it warms the malty sweet notes come through along with some citrus. flavor is big on grapefruit qualities with a very strong bitter finish and aftertaste..develops an oh so slight metallic quality in the finish as it warms and the nose develops a buttery caramel sweetness. this is probably one of the most complex IPAs i"ve tried. thanks to SpaceMonkey for this gem!
Marc (486) - Yokosuka, JAPAN - JAN 2, 2003
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Standard west coast hops in the nose of this one. Oily medium head that left tons of laceing. Creamy, resinous, and so very thick. Creamed citrus and pine with a gooy sweet malt backbone that keeps it from falling over itself. Notes of Cherry pie (?!) and pie crusty malts, and a long bitter finish.
JCW (1275) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 23, 2002
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAY 4, 2005 Cloudy and the color of cider, and it really does have a thick head. Big citrus aroma. Warm, creamy feel, with a citrus taste. I really like this beer. It’s a good reason to look forward to the Yule season. Hoppyholidays, Thanks Herbjones!
lowner (19) - astoria, New York, USA - DEC 20, 2002
4.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: OCT 30, 2003 2003: Version
Just got a case from Alesmith (Thanks Bill!!!). Very different than last year. While this version is a lot more maltier than last years it still has the creamy, smooth (ESB style yeast, small bubbles, nice hop flavor and aroma(!!!). While I found last years to be unlike any double IPA I've ever had this years version is closer to its competitors.........but better. A top, top beer. Plus it was the closest I've ever tasted a bottled beer to taste like a PERFECTLY drawn real ale!!!!
This is a very unique beer. It has the definite qualities of Alesmith that I adore: unbelievably smooth, very creamy, very quaffable. The Hops are very tastefully done. They're are a lot of hops but they are recessed almost enough to hide them. The malt is difficult to taste. This is not like a Rogue I2PA or Dogfish Head 90 minute IPA where the malt is sweet with hops ta boot. This beer almost seems to be trying to hide that it is a double IPA and when you combine the fact that it is creamy, smooth, and quaffable it makes it the session beer of Double IPA's.
Crit (3369) - Surrey, British Columbia, CANADA - DEC 16, 2002
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: APR 26, 2009 Light brown,lasting off white head.Piney nose. Light smooth malt foretaste finishing with huge hops.
BrockLandersLS (109) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 15, 2002
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
This was one damn fine brew, I was throughly impressed it is a true west coast treat. I enjoyed the cascade hoppy floralness and it finished smooth and crisp. Excellent.
21iceman40 (1731) - vienna, West Virginia, USA - DEC 13, 2002
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
This one had hops out of its mind. A great beer. There was a good citrus element as well as a good sense of the christmas spirtit with the pine flavor. The coolest thing about this beer is that I was actually at the alesmith brewery talking with Peter as he showed us the big tank in which this very brew was turning itself into the great product it is today. Can you really beat that?
DaSilky1 (2606) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 12, 2002
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 11, 2003 2001 edition: Didn't expect to find this one today...dark orange glow...speckled off-white head...aroma was Insane!..creamy hop buds surrounded in a fruity display of grapefruits and cherries sitting in liquid carmel...flavor was grapefruit rinds surrounded by cherry ice cream, carmel maltiness always present but slightly off-balanced by the hops...alcohol well hidden but not invisible...gets better as it warms...
Re-rate 8/5/2002 edition draught: This stuff glows and is pure hop juice, it was amazing Re-Rate Bottled 2002 : There something so creamy about this IPA in the bottle that it surpasses its san diego cousins..
SpaceMonkey (182) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 6, 2002
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Ok, I swear, taking a sniff of this beer is about as close as you can get to snorting a fresh bag of hops, which I’ve done quite a few times, so I can relate. It pours a solid golden orange, although a bit murky and cloudy. The lacy solid white head is quite wonderful, etching stained glass mystical patterns in my glass. This is a very big, yet balanced, West coast style IPA. However, the smoothness of the taste is very impressive. It’s almost as if the sweetness of the malt hangs just long enough in the mouth to dance final twirl with the hoppy bitterness toward the end. A big fine IPA, and a wonderful holiday brew. Beware though, it packs a wicked alcohol punch that takes you by surprise, so go easy, sip gently, and enjoy the Yule. [2002, on tap]