Aubrey (3356) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - JUN 23, 2003
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAR 19, 2004 Vinous, alcoholic and fruity nose. Inviting. Clear and amber with a red glow. Islands of white, patchy bubbles on the surface. Low carbonation, but surprisingly carbonated for such a BIG beer. Malts are very sweet and sugary; they linger on the lips, so much so, that when you lick them 10 minutes later, you can still taste the sweetness. Alcohol is masked dangerously well. Though, the warmth did slowly make its way down my throat, and eventually warmed my entire body to the point of sweating. Fruity notes of apple and pear surface here and there. Somewhat of a bitter/sour thing going on, too, but very mild. Woody notes add a nice touch. Hoppy, but not as hoppy as I expected. Flowery hops are thick and weighty in a sense, but it's not overtly bitter or nose-burning by any means. No "hot" sensations or major acidity either. How is this possible with 120 IBUs?! Although, the massive amounts of various hops do add a distinctive zing to the beer. Amazingly well-made and very interesting. What'll they think of next?! RERATE, 1-year-old bottle: As expected, hops mellowed and malts matured into a more softer, complex elixir. Alcohol was still more hidden than ever ... but damn if it doesn't creep up on you and kick your ass.
Prostman (1077) - Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 21, 2003
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
This is one great beer. It pours a nice amber color with a somewhat lasting white head. The taste was not as hoppy as I expected, yet still so outstanding. It was very well balanced and finished very nicely. This is one beer that stands out greatly and is highly recommended.
notalush (4450) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUN 19, 2003
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: NOV 26, 2003 [original] Tried this at a DFH tasting run by a rep at a local distributor (shoreline beverage) - this is certainly an experience - I wouldn't call it an IPA, more like sweet, hoppy rum - sure, the hops are there, but there is an intense, maple syrup sweetness to it (though not as sweet as WWS 23%) - the aroma is like pine resin, hops, liquor and rocket fuel - it burns the hair out of your nose, but at the very least makes you curious about the taste - as I understand, this beer's high alcohol content was an "accident," but what a happy one - tasty and unique, I wouldn't call it wonderful, but like the WWS, I'm sure it will age wonderfully [re-rate, 11/26/03] I still think that this beer is in no way an IPA, but once you put that aside it's actually pretty good - very barleywine-ish - the sweetness is a little much at times, but I'm sure it will balance out with some aging - they should re-name the beer, remove the IPA title.
JFGrind (1776) - Glenside, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 16, 2003
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Sam from DFH presented the bartenders at Friday the Firkinteenth a bottle of 2003 120 minute IPA. After a long night of draining 12 casks of beer and cleaning the bar myself and another bartender split the bottle. The amount of hops in this beer is overwhelming. As stated before in these reviews this is a sipping beer. It would be interesting to cellar this beer for a year or two, let the hops "fall out" and then sample it. DFH does some inovative beers and even though expen$ive this beer is worth a try.
aaronh (201) - McMurray, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 13, 2003
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
This seems more like a barley-wine than an IPA, but it is very good. This cask serving was not as agressively hop-laden as I expected, and had plenty of malt to balance out this strong, flavorful brew.
sloth (2340) - Ceciltucky, Co., Maryland, USA - JUN 13, 2003
3.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Slight, white head.Beautiful bright copper/amber color.Vinous, slightly fruity nose. Med/full body. Pretty sweet up front. Vinous, mead like flavors. Needs more hops to balance out the sweetness. Gonna try to age some to see if it drys out a little. I probably overrated it?! I,d say.
jayme9874 (756) - Hamburg, New York, USA - JUN 12, 2003
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 23, 2003 Clear light copper/amber color. Hard pour yields nice compacted white head and lace that is quickly diminishing. Subtle nose of sugar, apricot, maybe slight pineapple, hints of alcohol esters and floral, leafy hops. Very understated as far as the hop aroma goes, if I was blindfolded and smelled this, I would not guess IPA, let alone one of this magnitude. Medium to thick bodied, bit oily, moderatley syrupy, lots of caramlized sugar on palate, candy-like sweetness, fruit juice, grapes, somewhat stiff but not intrusive alcohol character that leaves a slight burn down throat. Hops struggle to really make a mark at first, although they do come out more in the finish and the resins can be felt throughout. Whooa, then the burps start, tastes just like I ate a whole hop field...cool shit. The interplay of almost slick fruity flavors, candy sweetness, alcohol, and hop oils make this one quite unique. As your palate adjusts to the sweetness, the alcohol, the hops, a melding of flavors show through more and makes for a pleasurable experience. Crazy beer and one many IPA fans and purists may not like. I would call it an ASA. Bravo for creativity and pushing the envelope once again. Enjoyable to sip and wrap your mind around.
brewbandit (312) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - JUN 10, 2003
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
For being hopped over 120 minutes, this brew showed a surprisingly low hop aroma with sweet malt. The flavor was hops and more hops yet quite mellow. The intense alcohol is well hidden with the malt sweetness. This beer should be bottled in 8 ouncers and sipped from a brandy snifter. Quite enjoyable and relaxing.
Nuffield (3536) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - JUN 9, 2003
3.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
A very interesting experience--surprisingly mild! As I tried to get aroma out of it, the head brewer said something on the order of "the aroma will struggle to find its way through the alcohol." I love the palate--the sweetness is my style, though it does approach syrupy levels. The hops are so constrained by this, but I see this as a good thing. It just doesn't have the massive hop character you would expect. The brewer told me he checked this scientifically and stopped the process when only 2% of the yeast was alive. The alcohol is really well hidden. Interesting and rewarding. (on tap, Pennsylvania Microbrewers Fest 2003)
mribm (445) - Hurley, New York, USA - JUN 9, 2003
2 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 1/5 OVERALL 8/20
Sweet, syrupy and not as hoppy as I expected after reading the commercial description above. It also left this weird sensation on my tongue...very weird mouthfeel. It hid the alcohol very well, but it is more of a barleywine then it is an IPA or an American Strong Ale. For the price of $18 per bottle (25.6 ounces) it just wasn't worth it. Where were all these hops they were talking about? A bit of a disappointment!