rajendra82 (983) - Alpharetta, Georgia, USA - MAR 26, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: MAR 27, 2004 After much searching for a trading partner to get this elusive brew, we finally meet. The beer leaves the 22 oz. brown bomber (with a really funky label I might add) and finds itself in my imperial pint glass. The appearance is clear orange amber color with a nice white head, both pretty standard for a good IPA. The head leaves a lot quicker than a single IPA which is likely due to the high strength of the brew. Carbonation is also low and is gone rather quickly. The aroma is surprisingly mild for an imperial IPA. It is clearly hoppy, but the aroma does not hit you across the room like a Ruination or a Celebration. There are strong notes of alcohol and caramel malts on the nose as well. The taste is quite sweet with a strong peppery kick due to the hops. Smooth silky mouthfeel with a syrupy thick consistency. Strong alcohol burn detracts somewhat from drinkability. Overall I think this brew is very close to being on the fence to being a barley wine, not that there is anything wrong with that. I will try to eventually get some more to cellar to see if it ages well like a real barley wine. Too bad, it will take a quite a while to get some more in.
deadguy (42) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - MAR 18, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
My first impression of this beer was its rich amber body followed by a slight amount of lacing. The aroma was PACKED full of hops. I expected a much more aggressive flavor but I was pleasantly surprised by a nice soft hoppy flavor. The true hop bite was apparent in the finish - a sharp hop finish that lingers. The alcohol content is a little obvious in the aftertaste which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. This is definitely a great IPA. The price on this beer is bit high (the manager at the wine and beer store told me the price has gone up a dollar with each new batch).
jables (101) - Champaign, Illinois, USA - MAR 17, 2004
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Aroma is incredibly floral with hops all over. The taste begins with a bang of hoppiness but is immediately balanced by sweetness. The finish has slight notes of alcohol but still persistent hops and light malty sweetness. The mouthfeel is slightly chewy, very silky smooth. The drinkability is incredible but dangerous considering the ABV%.
**The more I have this, the more I realize that this is the perfect IPA, it has it all, and I've yet to have anything that rivals this beauty. I can't get enough.
JSmith1181 (13) - Warwick, Rhode Island, USA - MAR 16, 2004
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Holy crap I love this beer. Nuff said. I'd go into details but just get it for yourself, have no worries.
IPAndy (120) - minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - MAR 15, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
24 or 22 oz bottle. Hoppy, of course, but perhaps a bit too much fruitiness. While I liked this super-fruitiness in the smell, the taste was a bit over-whelming. Still tasty, but I wouldn't jump at drinking 24 oz at one time.
Jaysus (17) - Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 13, 2004
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUN 16, 2004 22 oz. Bottle: Fair head with large bubbles, large bubbles throughout tulip glass as well which rise to the top rapidly. Generous lacing, bright amber color. Fruity, bitter flavor. The hops are not as noticiable as the alcohol, which is a slight bummer to me. It is a nice beer, but failed to live up to my expectations based on all the good things I've head about it.
MikeF (538) - Cleveland, Ohio, USA - MAR 11, 2004
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Sour bitter fruity aroma, pleasant. Very fresh tasting hopps, but only blatently obvious after the fruity sweet upfront flavor. Finishes, as you guessed, bitter.
JCapriotti (1379) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - MAR 7, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: MAR 7, 2006 Average-large white head, gold/amber body. Head is there for a while. Strong flowery aroma with pine and grapefruit, something I’d like put into air freshener. Taste is strong with hops, a little off balance with malt. Some grapefruit, sweet caramel, and a bitter finish that fades into a grapefruit rind taste. I detected some kind of stale bitterness in it, but it may have been the bittering hops. Very creamy texture. Overall, I love this beer. I need to do some tests with this... fresh versus "aged" a few months. I almost think I like it better with toned down hops, though, it does lose a bit in the aroma dept I believe.
(9 / 5 / 8 / 4 / 17)
Update 3/7/2006 - Fresh batch, I presume. This beer has lost its edge. After I had it the first time, I thought it was just a touch overrated.... but still remember it as being huge. Now, its just a big IPA. Not huge, not phenomenal, just there.
Suttree (5594) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - MAR 6, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Cloudy orange, big sloppy white head. Citrusy sweet aroma - grapefruit and pine intermixed. Nice thick, almost viscous mouthfeel. Sharp grapefruit and pine hops are paired with woodsy, thick malt flavors to balance and support the bitterness. As the beer warms, sweeter flavor slowly emerge - honeydew, perhaps - but never over power the hops. Really intense, but really easy to drink. Thanks to Aracauna for this one!
awaller05 (305) - Sharon, Wisconsin, USA - MAR 3, 2004
3.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a orang/yellow hue. Smell is a coppery tinnish smell. I get a decent head that dissipates to a small white head as the brew settles in. First taste is hit with the usual I.P.A bitterness. Sweet at the start like a grapefruit that has suger on it, then bam it hits you with a kick. Over all it is a darn good beer.