hopscotch (11341) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - MAY 10, 2003
UPDATED: MAY 18, 2008 2003. The re-rate: Bumping my rating up a notch. Completely sober this time around. First beer of Memorial Day weekend 2003. So thick, so rich, so good, so deceptively high in alcohol.Original rating 2003... This beer rocks!... It pours a thick, crystal clear amber hue with a small, creamy white head. Mostly diminishing with no lacing. HighGravity (926) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - MAY 9, 2003
The aroma is of black pepper, pineapple, Rome apples, evergreen, apricot... I could go on and on.
The flavor is crazy-rich, malty and sweet... an entire field of barley must have gone into this bottle. Black pepper, pineapple, green apple, caramel and toffee up front. Not quite completely balanced, but a damn nice try with citrus/evergreen/bitter hops. C’mon, 21% ABV? A splendid flavor and attempt at balance.
Very full-bodied with a syrupy mouthfeel and lively carbonation. A medium-length, piney finish with more spruce and pine at the wee end. An excellent Imperial IPA!
UPDATED: OCT 11, 2006 (2003) Very hoppy nose. Big fluffy head that lasts to the bottom of the glass. Great clarity. The alcohol is well hidden. Very fruity (peach) and sweet. I do not feel 120ibus is enough for a high gravity beer like this monster. A good experimantal brew. Under hopped! SirHopsAlot (44) - Cockeysville, Maryland, USA - MAY 9, 2003
Very unique to say the least. not much on the nose, or the head. It is a bit sweeter than I was hoping for, and the sour finish lasts a long time. A bit too sour for the level of sweetness. I was hoping the hops would have made it more dry and bitter. Not bad overall, but one glass is enough. I will say that I would have never guessed that this beer is 20% abv. The alcohol is masked to say the least. OldGrowth (3665) - the Containment Area, North Carolina, USA - APR 8, 2003
UPDATED: JUN 3, 2003 Draft: Wow. I would call this a hopwine. Nose wasn't as strong as I would have thought. Cloudy orange looking. Pineapple was exactly what I thought. A fun one to try. Wonder if they'll try selling this one. omnivore (270) - San Francisco, California, USA - APR 6, 2003
Boston Beer Summit 2003: They're high if they think this is an IPA. It needs to be reclassified as more of a barleywine style ale. The color was murky brown and clouy, almost a little scary. The aroma was hoppy and sweet. And the flavor was powerfully sweet wih a hoppy rush and bitter finish. Some REALLY nice citrus overtones to it as well. I'm REALLY glad I was a volunteer at the event and got to 'line jump' to get to try this one. To those of you at the Beer Summit who didn't, I'm sorry.
EddieG (169) - Palos Heights, Illinois, USA - APR 3, 2003
Tried this at the Barrel Aged Beer Fest. SOUR!!!! I do not think this was the intended effect. The beer was cloudy and really did not approximate what the other DFH IPA's are about. The beer was sweet and tart which would be ok if the intended beer was a belgian sour. Very dissappointing. Jokes (1455) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - APR 2, 2003
On tap at the Chicago Barrel Aged Beer Festival. The appearance made me think of SA Triple Bock Blonde with carbonation. Thick and very hazy. Apparently this was not filtered either. Extremely hoppy, as could be expected, but in a different way that I was anticipating. Citrus and pine in the form of orange and lemon concentrate and pine sap. However, there was also apricot and lots of berries. The aroma had such strong hints of bitterness, it seemed to be almost sour. Fruity and sweet, it seemed more like juice than beer initially. Almost no bitterness to begin with. However, after you got used to the sweetness the bitterness came out. It was also evident when burping afterward. Creative and different as all hell, but not something I could drink everyday. chronictonic (490) - Oreland, Pennsylvania, USA - APR 1, 2003
Just like Wiseguy572 noted - this one isn't done fermenting yet and will change by the intended bottle date of late April. Other than that, it's probably going to be another masterpiece worthy of being the 'sequel' to the 90 minute IPA. Worth a trip down to Dogfish Head in May for sure! WISEGUY572 (1377) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 23, 2003
UPDATED: MAY 20, 2003 I had this at the first public tasting, at a Michael Jackson beer event in Philadelphia on March 22. Beer had not been filtered and had not finished fermenting, so it was over-the-top yeasty, with strong sugar taste from unfermented residual sugar. Sam the brew master described it as "shock and awe" and, indeed, a 20% ABV IPA has some elements of both. I would describe the beer as too sweet, too strong, too hoppy, and too yeasty — in other words, just about perfect. A lot like a sweet cloudy yeasty silver desert sake, but with lots of hops. I loved it but will need to rerate it when it is finished, fined, and released. Will be available in big corked bottles. gotta have it. // I got a case of the bottles and opened one last night. Alcohol and bubblegum and sugar. Everything else ... including the enormous effort at hoppiness ... disappears under the taste of cough syrup. Does not even have the figgy fruitiness of Old School. How did fining it up for the bottle eliminate so much wonderful complexity? I'll try it again in three or four months.