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Ithaca Excelsior! IPAbbey

Formerly brewed at Ithaca Beer Company
Style: Imperial IPA
Ithaca, New York USA
Serve in Shaker, Snifter


on tap


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RATINGS: 110   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
A Belgo-American Ale brewed with special Canadian Honey Malt, generous additions of Simcoe, Amarillo, and Saaz hops, and an authentic Trappist Ale Yeast. Enjoy the tawny color, thick scent of tropical fruit and flowers, warming flavors of honey and clove, and clean, bitter finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
aracauna (3252) - Georgia, USA - SEP 29, 2007
This is apparently a love it or hate it beer, and Iím more in the prior than the latter. Great American hops, although Iíll admit the yeasty funkiness of a belgian isnít really shining through, although it is maltier than would be expected from an IPA.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
kmweaver (3207) - Petaluma, California, USA - JUN 22, 2007
750mL bottle, #080. Pours a clear, orangish ruby color; light tan head with good lacing. Nice dose of piney and citrusy hops in the aroma; some yeast and white pepper. Lively carbonation on the tip of the tongue, leading into a medium-to-full-bodied belgian tripel with a dose of piney hops; the tripel profile itself is quite nice and appropriate-to-style: somewhat dry and peppery, almost palate cleansing in its roughness, with some floral esters and plenty of yeast; the Simcoe profile adds a nice touch: somewhat resiny and chewy, melding well and giving a further dry pine and citrus earthiness to the rest of the beer; itís not quite the Houblon, but itís tasty and well-integrated. The deep pine notes linger for a while. Long, dry pine and citrus hop finish, with a dose of belgian sugars.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
ryan (3186) - Beltsville, Maryland, USA - NOV 1, 2007
Bottle provided by Scraff. Hazy amber body with a small white cover. The nose is apricot, tangerine, cat urine and caramel. The flavor is moderately sweet with cotton candy, toffee, tangerine and grapefruit. Medium/full body is soft and sticky with light carbonation.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Gorbalev (3000) - Ontario, CANADA - JUN 7, 2007
Bottle (750ml). Shared with blankboy, GregClow and Hogtown Harry, his bottle. Bottle #588 release April 2007. Thanks Harry, this looks to be a rare one! Medium orange, small white head. What an interesting aroma - fig, clove, malt, tar, interesting! Nat spicy, herbal, malty taste. Wow, so original! Very very good and complex.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
GregClow (2976) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JUN 19, 2007
Bottle shared with HogTownHarry, blankboy, tupalev & jerc - courtesy of HogTownHarry. Bottle #588. Hazy dark amber colour with a small white head. Fantastic aroma - big, warm, sweet & hoppy. Flavour is dynamite, with sweet honeyish notes, hints of spice and yeast, and a long, dry finish. An interesting hybrid that I really enjoyed.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Damico (2892) - Royersford, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 2, 2012
Over 5 years old this is one of the earlier of the Excelsior! Series beer, one of my favorites in the country. Thank you Benz - you are the man! Definitely not a drain pour for its age, but the Trappist yeast has allowed flavor to prevail. The aroma is pretty much gone unfortunately bringing old wet cardboard hops, but some subtle sweet Trappist yeast notes. The IPA pours clear amber with a smaller white head. The flavor brings some sweet yeast notes, clear not dirty, with some old hop faded flavor.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Hophead22 (2879) - Redlands, by way of Wisconsin,, California, USA - APR 25, 2009
750ml bottle from phhd, thanks man. Bright, hazy orange pour, not much head though, the carbonation is a bit light. Slight hoppiness with that distinct belgian yeast aroma as well, kind of bready. Very smooth, the hops have faded it seems, but still good. Not bad for a two year old beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
beastiefan2k (2830) - Emerald City (formely NYC & KS), Washington, USA - AUG 22, 2007
Hoppy tripelÖ I donít think so. Slightly sweeter DIPA, ohhh yes! Pours with no head but a thick, dark orange color and absolutely no clarity, barely even any light coming through it. Aroma of bitter, young, tropical fruits that just have not ripened yet; thick and perfume-y. Nothing about the aroma says Belgian but it is sweet and hoppy, just like the taste. Taste is cloying sweet, over the top sweet hops, with an astringent bitter hop finish topped of with a decent serving of alcohol. Hard to drink, itís a sweet, strong, alchy, hop-bomb. Finishes with a bitter-skins aftertaste. Medium body and slightly subdued carbonation with a syrupy mouthfeel. Summary: think Double SImcoe but thicker, bigger, more alcohol, and extremely cloying, ehh. 750ml bottle #1690 (out of how many..?), released April 07 (except I could not find it anywhere until July); Rodenbach Grand Cru smaller tulip glass

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
BDR (2534) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - OCT 5, 2007
I think jah noth hooked me up with this bottle in one of our trades - these big Ithacaís have been worth it every time. Sweet orange and grapefruit citrus hop nose. Brown with faint head. Citrus hop body with a strong yeast finish. Plenty of alcohol warmth cutting through.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
TAR (2518) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - AUG 4, 2007
Hazy orange. Tight white head nestles into a tight surrounding while quickly settling. Peppery hops, blood oranges, honeyed biscuits, and soft notes of tangerine fill the nose. Carbonation is soft and dense, but sparse. Hop bitterness is simultaneously sharp and soft with vibrant notes of both citrus rind and pith. Spiciness soon exerts itself and continually builds while wonderfully assaulting the palate with pinpoint pricks. The core is saturated with oily resins which gorgeously adorn the rich nutty and cakey malt textures. Masterful malt extraction yields a lush, bouncy and full-bodied malt frame. Spicy alcohol imparts dryness while underscoring the fluffy malts. Quite honeyish throughout, but never overbearingly sweet thanks to the near impeccable attenuation and abundance of fruity esters and plump mango. Hops possess just enough acidity to gently buckle the cheeks and heighten drinkability, yet not enough to tarnish the delightfully dense oiliness. Soft and pillowy notes of orange pith are echoed by explosively flavorsome notes of mango which complement the understated and well-polished bitterness. Peachy acidity lends itself modestly beneath the more-forceful hoppiness. Finishes spicily hoppy and sappy, with substantial malt heft which lingers and balances the hop acids. Citric hop burps enhance the experience. My gut tells me that once they fine-tune the carbonation, which is just a bit low, this will be stunning. Thanks to jah noth for the bottle.

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