ryan (3186) - Beltsville, Maryland, USA - MAY 22, 2008
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JUN 24, 2010 Bottle courtesy of general_gau and someone at dark lord day. Big spruce/pine nose with some cotton candy and citrus. The flavor is moderately sweet, moderately bitter with lots of cotton candy, honey, massive amounts of resinous pine, some citrus. Medium/full body with moderate carbonation.
argo0 (12937) - Washington DC, USA - MAY 22, 2008
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
(750ml bottle, thanks General_Gao) Quickly dissipating medium white head atop hazy apple juice body. Aroma is medium sweet, spruce/pine, some floral, light bread. Taste is moderately sweet, juicy pine, some fruity, light grassy. Medium-full body, some resin, stickiness, alcohol well contained.
kmweaver (3207) - Petaluma, California, USA - MAY 22, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
750mL bottle, courtesy of General_Gao. Thanks, Colin! Pours a hazy, deep honey-golden color; off-white head with solid, medium bubbled lacing. Intense, juicy spruce notes and piney hop presence; unlike some spruce-influenced beers, this is soft, generous, and smells like an oily pine forest; great nose. Medium-to-full mouthfeel: pine notes, spruce, like an intense evergreen forest; the carbonation is well-integrated; chewy breadiness and malt notes (bread, toastiness); excellent, tasty stuff. Lengthy finish, showing pine, spruce, and viscous almost-Simcoe hoppiness.
yjb (113) - Davis, California, USA - MAY 17, 2008
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
strong and sweet tastes like im supping on sap... not a bad thing... in a league of its own. Recommended to try bun maybe not to by again... still a great experiment. KEEP íem coming shorts!!!
Styles (2014) - Lincoln Park, Michigan, USA - MAY 17, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Courtesy of MikeMac. Hazy/cloudy orange, huge white head, great lacing. Huge pine/spruce resin, literally smells like a fresh x-mas tree. Decent citrus character, not much for malt in aroma. Flavor again, huge pine/spruce, tastes like there are needles in the glass. Needles add a certain freshness character thatís hard to describe. Very resinous and sticky. As it warms caramel comes through a bit, helps to balance. Sort of 1 dimensional, but I dig it.
TAR (2627) - Marshall (Asheville area), North Carolina, USA - APR 30, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Radiant yellow. Fine, tight white froth. Pungent yet refined scents of spruce needles and dank, spicy hops dazzle the olfactory senses. Bright notes of mandarin oranges, black pepper and cannabis. Gentle effervescence. Bottle conditioned. Dense resins coat the palate with a pleasantly composed sappiness. Vibrant spruce needles dig deeply into the palate, colliding with the sappy hops to create a black-pepper effect as they prick the tongue. Clean sweep of alcoholic dryness is bolstered by the minty, candylike spruce as it cleans up some of the sappy residue. Hops are dense in flavor and far from acidic, yielding a lustrous note of candied lemon zest which remains bright throughout. Supportive malt sweetness is relaxed yet firm and crackery, and plenty sturdy enough to withstand and complement the ever forceful bitterness. Finishes dry, minty and zesty with a tight medley of spruce and hops, and a prolonged crackery malt afterimage. Hop character is a bit raw (not enough succulence to match the bitterness), and the spruce needles deaden much of the overall brightness. Does have a deeply enticing aroma which is mesmerizing in its freshness and zippiness, as well as a beautifully airy yet dense mouthfeel. Love the concept here. Extremely solid, as is, but this could be otherworldly with a few tiny adjustments.
TheEpeeist (3709) - Media, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 19, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
25.6 oz bottle. Fogged honey with streaming bubbles and a long-lasting, puffy white head. Quite pretty in a pilsner glass. Nose is dough, lemon zest, grass and spruce. Crisp medium light with biting carb. Taste is an odd citrus and lychee? Hops and iron with spruce adding a sweet touch. Dries with increasing bitterness. Crazy. Once again Shorts intrigues me with a unique brew that pushes the edge of beer boundaries.
ogglethorp (917) - Ohio, USA - APR 10, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Pours a clear deep golden color with a soapy white head. Aroma is spruce, caramel, citrus, lemon, floral. Flavor is spruce, citrus, caramel, floral. Palate is medium to full bodied, medium carbonation, finished bitter and piney. Very unique brew, I thought it was great when cold, as it warmed more of the spruce flavor poked through and I didnít like it as much. I gotta give em huge credit for pulling this off as well as they did, cuz this had disaster written all over it. Last one to finish their glass eats the pine cone in the bottom!!
sliffy (2040) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - MAR 31, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle shared by ogglethorp: Pours a clear gold with a white head. Aroma, smells like a freshly cut pine tree, like sawing off the end of the christmas tree and taking a nice whiff of the stump, there are some floral elements as well. Flavor, very floral and piny almost like a potpourri, some bready malts. It was very interesting, not something I could drink a whole 750 of on my own, but itís a nice beer to share. Really unique.
joe1510 (501) - Illinois, USA - MAR 7, 2008
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
#139 of 886
Recieved this bottle in a great trade with Hoppymeal, thanks a million Derek! Shortís Imperial Spruce India Pilsner pours like Iíd expect of a pilsner (although not one that weighs in at 10%). Beautiful golden body with a glass full of large carbonation bubbles swirling and rushing to the surface. Every other Imperial Pilsner Iíve sampled has had some viscosity and you really noticed by the crawl of the carbonation. This on the other hand looks more like a standard pilsner. The dense head grew to three fingers on the pour and is cotton white. Falls to a finger plus at itís lowest and leaves big chunky patches of lace.
The smell of this beer is intense! Iím sure the flavor will be too. Thereís a quick flash of biscuity malts upfront but the Blue Spruce neddles come fast and hard. Rosemary like at first but morphing into a glassful of Christmas tree. Iím not getting much in the hop department. Possibly some pine upfront but thatís most likely the Blue Spruce. Wait! As it warms there are some citric hop qualities that wave faintly in the background. A touch of earthiness rom the spruce needles. I can feel my sinusí clear each time I inhale. Very interesting!
The nose doesnít lie! Just as intense on the tongue as in the nose. Slightly sweet biscuity malts flash through again but the spruce needles take over quickly. My mouth all at once becomes earth, resinous, and sappy like Iím chomping on a Christmas tree. The spruce rides roughshod over my tongue. There is more hoppiness than the smell led me to believe, but doesnít show itself until the swallow. That hoppiness is lightly sweetened grapefruit and keeps the spruce from running away with things. Iím growing extremely fond of the bitterness the spruce needles leave in their path.
Most Imperial Pilsners Iíve sampled in the past have had far too viscous bodies for the style. This has a medium body but the lively carbonation keeps it moving at a fast pace. I canít imagine the mouthfeel being any better then what it is right now.
This bottle is going down pretty easy but the flavors are so intense one bottle is all I could handle in a sitting. The bitterness does a number on your tastebuds too so be ready.
Iíve been fortunate to have sampled three of Shortís beers, all thanks to Derek, and everyone of them has been excellent. This is one of the most unique beers Iíve encountered and would love to get my hands on some more spruce infused beers.