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RATINGS: 201   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 318   ABV: 10.6%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Like a mad scientist Spike starts with Big Hoppy Monster, Terrapin’s Imperial Red Ale, and its tantalizing hop aroma and enormous malt backbone. As if that if that wasn’t enough flavor for one beer, Spike ages it w/ French oak spirals for two months. The touch of toasted vanilla from the oak combines with the mammoth hop aroma and rich maltyness of the beer to create a complex flavor experience that’s electrifying!
-2012 - 9.1%
2013 - 10.6%


4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jgb9348 (4859) - Arlington (Pentagon City), Virginia, USA - NOV 29, 2014
2013 Bottle: Deep ruby and violet tinted amber coloured body with a rich glow of brown and a fast-dying single centimetre tall light brown head. Aroma of pure richness - alcohol, oak, vanilla, bourbon, figs, toffee, prunes, raisins, oak, hops and way more alcohol - very nice and smells like a nicely oaked barley wine. Full-bodied; Super rich malt body with grain presence, some bourbon and brandy notes and a lot of vanilla and dry cedar notes throughout - the taste pulls in flavours from every direction. Aftertaste is quite dry with more alcohol than before, but with a introspective note - more of the oak comes out with less sugar, some shallow hops and a bit of hop finish - nice. Overall, a very nice beer throughout with an amazing complexity that really ranges from the nose to the taste to the finish - this one surprises all around, but shows pretty much what you’d expect - although, I’d classify this as a barley wine and not an imperial ipa. I sampled this twelve ounce bottle purchased from Whole Foods in Arlington (Clarendon), Virginia on 24-October-2013 for US$3,49 before the last Marine Corps Marathon, but sampled it in celebration of running a marathon today in Maryland on 29-November-2014.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Darkmagus82 (1830) - - OCT 1, 2014
Transfer from BA review on 4-4-14- Poured from bottle into a snifter Appearance – The beer pours a very deep copper color with hints of a ruby within, with the overall color bordering on a mahogany color. Upon pouring the brew has a small half finger head of just off white foam. The head fades rather fast, leaving some light foamy lace on the sides of the glass and a few spotty foam islands floating on the surface of the beer. Smell – The aroma of the beer very bready and heavy of some sweeter aromas of a caramel and toffee nature. Along with these malty smells comes a decent sum of an oaky smell as well as a big dose of a boozy bourbon smell. With a bit of a pine and grassy hop and some aromas of a darker fruit nature, one experiences an overall very sweet, malty and boozy smell that gives one a warming feel from just the aroma. Taste – The taste begins with a smooth malty flavor with a big bready and slightly doughy flavor. Tons of sweet caramel and darker fruits of raisin, plum and prune are on the tongue right from the start creating a very sweet brew. The sweet and bready flavors create a base for the flavor profile, lasting throughout much of the taste. While not very present at the start of the taste, hop and oak flavors develop more and more as the taste advances. The oak is the first to come to the tongue with it gaining strength more toward the end of the taste. Some hop flavors join the taste at this time as well, with a bit of a light earthy and grassy flavor coming to the tongue. The hop remain rather light throughout the remainder of the taste, not really living up to the “hoppy monster” name. While the hop remains lighter, the oak and sweet are both quite potent at the end of the taste, and with them comes some rather stronger boozy tastes, which with the rest of the flavors, leaves a boozy and sweet warming taste to linger on the tongue. Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is quite thick and chewy with a carbonation level that is very low. The very thick body and low carbonation really accentuate all the boozy, oak, and sweet flavors of the brew rather nicely, making this one a very slow sipping brew. Overall – While the “hoppy” in the name was never really delivered to a full extent, the boozy, fruity, and oak were very much big and monstrous, but in a rather nice way. Overall it is big, malty, and boozy with lots of oak flavors which makes for a rather nice slow sipper. Super delicious!!

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
deaconmike (399) - Roswell, Georgia, USA - SEP 14, 2014
Poured from a bottle. Murky dark caramel with 1/2 inch tan head. Tons of caramel in the aroma along with oak and vanilla. Sticky sweet smell. Some fruity hops lingering in the background. Full body and smooth. Hides 10%+ alcohol well. Rich flavorful brew; a bit on the sweet side and I didn’t find it to be quite as hoppy as the name might suggest.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
conway (1636) - - AUG 6, 2014
Bottle. Clear ruby with a thick off white head. Aroma is sweet malt, melon, caramel and malt. Barrel character really comes out in the taste. Finish is really short. Mouthfeel is slightly thin. Not bad.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
John25 (698) - Middletown, New Jersey, USA - AUG 6, 2014
UPDATED: OCT 24, 2014 Bottle. Dark amber. Big oak aroma with huge malts. The taste follows suit with burnt sugar and some caramel. Low carb. Sort of thin mouthfeel with a long resinous finish. Really good, lots of oak. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Goodgrief (1813) - Middletown, Delaware, USA - JUL 22, 2014
Bottle from State Line. Red/amber pour with good head. Sweet flavor. Tons of caramel malt. Akin to Bigfoot that is aged. It’s a little too sweet, but maybe I need a fresher bottle (or even better a tap). Good but could have used more hoppage.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BillWyce (751) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 11, 2014
Pours hazy red-brown with a 1-finger tan head. Woody oak aroma with some caramel malt underneath. Full body, with a mild syrupy thickness and a brief finish. Flavor of oak with nutty malt beneath. A touch of caramel sweetness mixes with the wood in the finish.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
snoworsummer (2503) - baltimore, Maryland, USA - JUL 7, 2014
From a bottle. Pours hazy reddish copper with lots of particles floating around and a fizzy beige head. Tastes like dark coffee, wood, dry cocoa, earth, and dark fruits. Light/medium body and low carbonation. Smells like dried.fruits, raisins, sweet booze, nice and strong.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
sonnycheeba (3788) - Federal Hill, Baltimore, Maryland, USA - JUL 7, 2014
Bottle. Pours mostly clear dark amber with ruby highlights and creamy off-white head. Aroma is cereal and cookie malts, mixed berries, dates, oak, floral notes, faint spice, and some vanilla. Flavor is dry malt base with sharp floral and pine hop bitterness, light fig, smooth oak, and some dark fruit esters; dry, oak finish. Medium body and carbonation.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Mrnoluv (179) - long beach, California, USA - JUL 3, 2014
The smell is malty, hoppy, the look is a cool redish/brown, the taste is a sweet, scotch ale, with good hops and a bitter taste that lingers after the swallow. Good ABV on this on I had was the 2012, ages pretty damn good. Good beer!


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