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RATINGS: 114   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 85   EST. CALORIES: 210   ABV: 7%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
• Aromatic earth tonic of the resinous picea and humulus lupulus
• Beer Type: Imperial pilsner brewed with Northern Michigan Blue Spruce needles and healthy doses of high alpha hops

Imperial India Spruce Pilsner is fermented with local, hand-picked blue spruce tips and the quintessential symbol for Joe Short’s love of hops and craft beer. The spruce presence, rooted in historical brewing practices, is enormous and gives the beer a refreshing gin quality. This beer is impressively light bodied, considering the immense spruce flavors and the prodigious additions of hops.


2.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
Illini08 (542) - Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - JUL 28, 2008
Sampled at the Carolina Crew gathering in Greenville. Wow... a Christmas tree in a bottle. Aroma was dominated by the Christmas tree/spruce aroma. Somewhat astringent and very dominant spruce flavor. A bit too one-dimensional and tough to drink for my liking. Thanks to Paul for bringing this though - definitely a unique beer and worth trying.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
TURDFERGUSON (3963) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - JUL 22, 2008
Tasted at the Carolina Crew gathering, Greenville - thanks to Paul Philippon for sharing! Nose has a bit of oregano in there with a whole bunch of spruce and piney hops. Flavor is very sprucey and hoppy but I don’t dislike it at all. Really enjoyed this unique creation and my first brew from Shorts. This is by far the best imperial pilsner I have had.

2.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 1/5   OVERALL 10/20
ucusty (2691) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - JUL 21, 2008
UPDATED: FEB 7, 2009 Tasted at the Carolina Crew gathering, Greenville - thanks to Paul Philippon for sharing! Okay this holiday season rip off a branch of christmas tree, chew on for a while and thats the flavor you have here. Tried it twice, but its just to in your face with resinous pine and piney hops. Slightly hot finish. BLAM!!! is right

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - JUL 20, 2008
Tasted at the Carolina Crew gathering, Greenville - thanks to Paul Philippon for sharing! BLAM!!! Sticky icky pine resin everywhere, no longer on your fingertips from the Xmas tree but right up in your nose and mouth. Incredible spruce aroma with some spice and very aggressive hops. I started off thinking this was too boozy, too one-dimensional. But God help me if I didn’t keep coming back to this one, liking it more each time I sipped.

4.9
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
incutrav (577) - Woodbury, Minnesota, USA - JUL 14, 2008
I knew long before i ever cracked this 750 that i would love this beer. I love the smell of pine, i love hops, why would i not like this? I was correct, the spruce smell is amazing. Each sip coats your throat with pine resin, almost sap like, in a good way. The hops seemed to get overpowered for the most part, but the pine worked well so it didnt really matter. Slightly sweet, but its all about spruce, spruce and a little more spruce. If only a guy could find more spruce beers around, you would think more would do it with the hop situation like it is. Me likey!

3.8
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
jcr (2221) - Jasper, Indiana, USA - JUL 10, 2008
750 ml. Brewed on 4-30-07. What an interesting beer — especially if you like a big spruce flavor. Beautiful orange pour with big, frothy head. Huge, delicious aroma of juicy grapefruit, fresh-squeezed orange juice, spruce, pine, resin. Hints of caramel and sweet honey. The flavor is moderately sweet and moderately to heavily bitter. The finish remains bitter and dry. The flavor has the strong taste of spruce, like chewing on needles. In fact, the spruce overwhelms the other nice qualities of the beer. Medium body and velvet texture. If the spruce had been dialed down a couple of notches, allowing the nice malt backbone to share the stage, I would think this right up there with Dreadnaught. But the spruce is just too overpowering. Nonetheless, kudos to the brewery for one heck of a a fun beer to drink.

4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SpudClampDawg (1029) - Jasper, Indiana, USA - JUL 10, 2008
750ml bottle; Shimmering orange pour with a steady stream of tiny cascading bubbles and a sticky white head. I always thought certain hops were able to mimic the juiciness of pink grapefruit. I was wrong. The spruce tips give this the sensation of a ruby red grapefruit being squeezed directly into the glass. So insanely fresh smelling. Honey and caramel are hidden below the fruit. The body opens with a wallop of rindy fruit and bitter pine. The hops and spruce scrub the tongue, allowing softer notes of wildflower honey and caramelized sugars to come through. The body fades into a long and flavorful finish that is both grassy, citrusy and piney. While the nose is near perfect, the body is a bit overloaded with spruce, creating a one-dimensionality in flavor. Still, I love the one dimension that dominates and would consider trying my hand with spruce tips at home. Bravo to one of the most innovative breweries on the scene.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
pnista (1007) - Bloomington, Indiana, USA - MAY 31, 2008
Thanks for sharing, Yaniv... I think! Pours a hazy golden brown with a healthy creamy white head. Big ass pine fucking forest. Malt sweetness is covered up by pine. There isn’t much else to the nose. Thicker, viscous, creamy. Very piney. Oh my god! Sweeter rounder malt. Creamy. Hops are there, but subdued compared to the pine. This is weird, but fun!

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ryan (3186) - Beltsville, Maryland, USA - MAY 22, 2008
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.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
argo0 (11581) - Washington DC, USA - MAY 22, 2008
(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.


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