Willimantic IPA 500
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RATINGS: 4   MEAN: 3.38/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 3/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 198   ABV: 6.6%
IPA 500 – Unfiltered India Pale Ale brewed as our 500th batch of beer. Five malts…five hops, including Centennial, Columbus, Amarillo, Chinook and Nugget. A real mouthful.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
SuIIy (1983) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - MAY 10, 2006
Cask pint at the brewpub 4/29/06. Pours a hazy dark orange color with a small cream white colored head. Nose is sugary and light hops, nothing too outstanding. Flavor is lightly watery, has some hop notes to it and some sugary sweet malt with a hint of caramel to it. Seems very uncomplex and plain. Has a creamyness to the texture from the cask.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
ClarkVV (5559) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 9, 2006
Cask pint at the brewpub, 4/29/06
Somewhat muddled black-raspberry-tinged fiery-copper color, with some dull tan highlights as well, on the sides. Not served "bright", unfortunately. Head is white/off-white and retained at cover, with low to moderate lacing.
Sweetly sugary malts, tempered by some dry, rather hard and quick finishing crystal malt open up the aroma, while the hops zip in as well, on the heels of the malt. Bitter, dry, citric centennials and resinous columbus notes are surprisingly reserved, while soft, flowery, mildly fruity amarillos come as an afterthought. For five malts, it dosent seem to go very far, drying and petering out, with some notes of dry graham crackers and cardboard. The hops seem tired, not overly aromatic and bogged down by water and sweet touches of malt.
Flavor brings a heavy dose of crystal malt, very simple, sugary and hard, finishing quickly, with little depth and substance on the tongue. Water disperses the hops, which run about confusedly on the palate, some bitter, some fruity, but nothing strongly flavorful or focused. Orange candy sweetness comes forth as it warms, with some toastiness balancing, but a dry cardboard-like oxidation steps in; either that or just heavily drying, hard crystal malt. After a few sips, its run its course and the palate just feels watered down, with notes of sweet honey/sugar and citrus going nowhere. Low carbonation, actually starts out rather cool for a cask beer. No alcohol noted, no brewing flaws. Must have been the very tail-end of the cask, which is too bad, but they should take it off once it begins to go.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Immy (1955) - Virginia Beach, USA - MAY 4, 2006
On tap at the brewpub. Cloudy golden brown, small ring of a white head. Pleasant grapefruit nose, some caramel present. Medium bitter IPA, very smooth. Citrusy bitter finish, clean and crisp. Light lacing throughout. Solid IPA.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Cottrell (72) - Connecticut, USA - MAY 4, 2006
Was there ever a doubt? Pours a lightly murky amber with a thick sticky head. Aroma is strong citrus grapefruit and sugary pine needles, tangerines, and tangerine rinds. Sweet up front, juicy tangerines with caramel, followed by a wallop of pine and grapefruit bitterness. Finishes a little on the dry side, with a long lasting pine needle bitterness. A nice beer to commemorate the 500th batch, congrats to Willibrew.

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