unclebleen (620) - California, USA - OCT 10, 2003
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Almost copper, amber color. Off-white head and lacing. Lazy bubbles float to the surface. Very, very piney, the smell is great. First hit with major bitterness. But, mellows wonderfully on the swallow. Alcohol is present but masked (unbelievably so). Never had a beer like this but really enjoyed it.
mkobes (2141) - paramus, New Jersey, USA - OCT 9, 2003
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: NOV 14, 2003 For me this would be more of a barley wine. Its a very strong beer. High in alcohol but not noticable in the taste. Very hoppy. Dark orange in color. Very good beer and its pleasant to drink. Very good beer to drink in the winter. Its will really warm you up.
JorisPPattyn (8032) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - OCT 1, 2003
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bright red-orange. virtually no head. Nose: hops - what else? but also a smell of pizza-crust - and alcohol! I get some Maillard, it seems. Strange - but first taste impression is sweet! Bitterness lurks at the edges. The balance - with such settings ) is incredible! Very rich mouthfeel, oily, nearly syrupy but not syrupy-sweet - makes me think of EKU 28°, the alcohol included. If anything blows me it is the balance of this ogre, where I was expecting an over-the-top Westcoaster. Nothing of it. GREAT!
Murphy (1759) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - SEP 26, 2003
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Good strong aroma. Shamless amount of alcohol, they didn't try to hide it nor could they. Hops are there for a second, then ethanol rolls them over. Certainly unique. Not for "responsible" drinkers!
ericnixon (740) - Portland, Oregon, USA - SEP 21, 2003
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Wow! 1/2 of a 12oz bottle (thanks Volgon!). I was expecting to get hit with the giant mega hoppiness that's found in Smuttynose's Big A IPA, or Stone's Ruination...but that wasn't the case at all. It was wonderfully smooth and well-balanced. Ok, it might have been hopped like a mofo, but it was so perfectly crafted that it didn't assult me with overt hoppiness. An amazing sipping beer.
egajdzis (5401) - Spring Mount, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 20, 2003
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: OCT 27, 2005 Poured a dark orange color with a small sticky head. Sweet candy sugar, and slighty hoppy aroma. Had a very sweet initial taste, almost like candy, then the alcohol burns your throat on the way down.
Ernest (6345) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - SEP 19, 2003
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
UPDATED: APR 1, 2008 Bottle.
Head is initially small, fizzy, off-white, fully diminishing. Body is hazy light
amber, bottle conditioned.
Aroma is lightly to moderately malty (cookie), moderately hoppy (resin, grapefruit, apricot), with notes of alcohol and tomato juice.
Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter. Finish is
moderately sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter.
Medium to full body, syrupy texture, lively carbonation, heavily alcoholic.
Surprisingly simple, uninspiring, and harsh.
Jayb0 (1052) - Cherry Hill, New Jersey, USA - SEP 16, 2003
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: JUN 10, 2014 I think it’s gone 30 minutes too far. slight film riding an amber colored beer. Lacks the florals of many IPA’s, aroma is more citrus and malt. Surprisingly sweet throughout. Hop bitterness and vinous qualities mingle but for me the beer seems to have competing flavors as opposed to unity. Still, a noble attempt from this great brewery. I’d love to try a bottle five years from now...
Draft 6/2014: This beer has become crazy-hard to get although I’m still not convinced it’s really worth it. The 90/75/60/61 are all more enjoyable. having said that, I liked it better than memory served, and it has gone through changes. Thick, syrupy, a bit too sweet throughout, but nice fruity hopiing, vinous, oddly chocolatey as welll. Fun every 10 years or so :) Upping +1 aroma, +1 palate, +2 overall.
Ringo (963) - Loveland, Colorado, USA - SEP 10, 2003
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
I drank the whole 750 ml bottle last night. I got drunk. But I'm rating it sober today. Not overly hoppy for an IPA, sort of sweet but not thick like the WWS. My girlfriend said it tasted like rubbing alcohol. I can't say that, but the alcohol is noticeable in a good way, it is warming but definitely not the overpowering flavor (like the godawful Utopias).
JohnC (3000) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - SEP 7, 2003
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: SEP 8, 2003 I must give a big thanks to hopsrus and francisweizen for the bottles that they provided.
Appearance: It pours a clear golden color with a medium bubbled white head. The head dies pretty quickly.
Aroma: Piney and citrusy.
Flavor: In the first sip (and I emphasize sip, don't try gulping this one) you're hit with a sticky, syrupy flavor. It's sweet, but not too sweet. Little tingles of alcohol pop up & tickle your mouth.
What surprises me is that it's more sticky sweet than hoppy.