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McNeill's Dead Horse IPA - McNeill's Brewery

McNeill's Dead Horse IPAMcNeill's Dead Horse IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

140 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 140
Reviews: 107
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 15.26%

Brewed by:
McNeill's Brewery visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: SheepNutz on 10-29-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 140 | Reviews: 107 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of woosterbill


3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Barcade into a shaker pint.

A: Clear medium amber body with a nice head of fine off-white foam. Good retention, light lace. Attractive.

S: Richly toasty malts dominate, with some floral hops and sweet fruitiness along for the ride. A bit sweet for my tastes, but to style.

T: Follows the nose: perfect balance of floral hops and sweet, fruity, toasty malts. Too sweet for me (especially on the finish), but pretty good.

M: Creamy medium body. Solid.

O: This is a clean, enjoyable EIPA. Worth a shot, but don't expect anything too exciting.


Serving type: on-tap

01-23-2012 00:37:19 | More by woosterbill
Photo of SickGnar


3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Mildly hazey, orangey copper. Lots of active bubbles rising to a large, vaguely light sherbet hued cap of foam. Very good retention. Quite decent lace. Second pour from bomber is a bit more hazey and has a few floaties.

S: Floral, earthy, & citrusy hops. Malts are toasty & biscuity with touches of diacetyl and caramel. Rather lacking in heft – particularly for hops. Some more esters come out as it warms, aas does some more buttery caramel and a hint more malts.

T: Earthy & spicy hops on the front end. Resin and herbal on the back nine. Barely there hints of citrus fade in and out. Bitterness is more firm than character, but both are substantial. Hops give a bit of a coarse impression. Malts are biscuity / crackery / toasty in a dry way. Just a bit of Crystal 40 character, but minimal sweetness. Ghost hint of roast in the finish. Very light diacetyl and esters hover in the background. Pretty well attenuated. Secong pour from bomber yields a bready yeast note. It is also warmer with increased English character from esters & buttery toffee – plus malts are more rounded out.

M: Under medium body with CO2 quite a bit over-matched. Carbonation & firm hops on the sort of thin base give a dry raspy feel. Just enough texture from tannins & a few dextrins to keep it from being too harsh.

D: A bit rustic in hop character, look, and feel. Minimal caramelly, malty, richness for an English IPA. Sort of leaning a bit to an ESB or a big pale. Definitely English in character. I would like more umph from the hops and more richness to the malts. But, all said and done, This one is alright. Serve it on the warmer side though.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2012 22:17:49 | More by SickGnar
Photo of BeerLover99


4.22/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: cloudy burnt orange body, trace white head,
gorgeous lacing

S: lemon zest, woodsy, pine, yeast, malt

T: yeast, lemon zest, pine, long bitter oily finish

M: med body, big oily, sticky mouth

O: McNeill's continues to impress me.
Great to see an American brewery deliver
a mighty fine English IPA. Let your
McNeill's beer conquest begin, you will
thank me.


Serving type: bottle

11-03-2011 18:13:16 | More by BeerLover99
Photo of BrewMaester

New York

4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy Auburn pour, fluffy head that is quite resilient. Nose contains hops bread fruit and yeast. The flavor is a mix of fruit bread and hops, hops are minimal considering that it’s an ipa. Alcohol does make itself felt especially on the finish. Low carbonation makes this a smooth easy drink. It’s a pleasant brew but doesn’t stand out considering the great selection of ipas available, certainly worth drinking though. Handsome bottle btw…

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2011 23:17:05 | More by BrewMaester
Photo of Knapp85


3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out as a straw yellow color with a very light haze to it. The head was a little thin on this one, kind of surprising I though for the amount of hops that was probably in it. The smell was hoppy and really gave off a nice inviting aroma. The taste had a nice hop character to it also. The mouthfeel was a bit in the watery or thin side I think... Could have been a bit thicker for me. Overall I liked the flavor of the beer a lot.

Serving type: on-tap

09-02-2011 04:51:34 | More by Knapp85
Photo of Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

4.22/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep cloudy caramel color ale with a nice thick foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of light bitter hops with light floral undertones with a rich caramel malt base. Taste is also a well balanced mix between some floral and lightly bitter hops with a rich caramel mal bill with just enough sweetness to balance the hops profile. Body is full with limited filtration and good carbonation. I understand this is not an IPA for hophead but the malt bill is quite incredible and I would love to have this more often.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2011 19:07:47 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of bosox941827

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomb bottle into imperial pint glass; served slightly cold and warmed as tasted
A - Pours a cloudy (bottle conditioned) brownish-auburn, with a full-on pour (no sediment left in bottle) with a foamy head that hangs around for quite a while; leaves a touch of sediment in glass but really not all too much (yeast stays suspended)
S - A nice gentle, not-at-all-in-your-face fruity hop scent, mixed with some bready yeast and a bit of malt and just a touch of alcohol
T - Pretty much consistent with the smell; hopheads this is NOT an American-style IPA (see designated style), but that does not detract from the fact that this is a great beer. Hops are very fruity and pleasant tasting, with just a bit of a bite at the end. Taste lingers for quite a while and invites additional sips. A hint of alcohol at the end (even though it is quite low).
M - Carbonation is low as per the style, therefore this is a smooth sipper.
An excellent summer IPA when you want a tasty, hoppy, full-bodied beer without too much alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2011 20:17:31 | More by bosox941827
Photo of beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Burnt autumn orange coloring with a heavy show of effervesce within. The head is a good size, with a mushroom like structure, light beige in color while displaying a very good retention rate.

S: After a good visually, the aroma seems rather lackluster in comparison as well lacking by style. Some fresh wet grass mingles with a light toasted grain base that was more on par with a amber rather a ipa. Even after much agitation I failed to get any real sense of hoppiness. I later found out this was classified as a english style and not american style.

T: Sweet toasty grains with a bit more show of hops then the nose led on. Pine with a warming flowery hoppiness of light to medium strength, maybe more so of a assertive pale, but offers some redemption, especially upon warming where the hops become more pronounced.

M: Active carbonation, malty medium base with some creaminess. More in show of bittery flowery hops come on the swallow aiding in a last minute redemption.

O: With exception of the nose, an adequate ipa with moderate drinking results. Wouldn’t go out of my way to recommend, or buy again, but wouldn’t discourage for the english drinking ipa fan.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2011 23:02:17 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of RonfromJersey

New Jersey

3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orange body, running from light to dark, bottom to top. Level foamy dense off-white micro bubbles about two inches thick. Lacing is covering about 75% of the glass.

Earthy, herbal aroma.

Sturdy semi-sweet malt foundation. Some fruitiness follows, then a more English hop nip at the swallow. Highly balanced.

Smooth light-medium mouthfeel. Creamy with a fizzy finish.

Overall, a nicely drinkable mostly English IPA.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2011 03:58:56 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of Flounder57


3.3/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured the 22 oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: The beer poured about a two finger head that reduces down and laces the glass as it is consumed. The color of the beer is a hazey orange. The beer looks decently carbonated by the bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass

Smell: Slight hints of citrus.

Taste: All I could really notice was the orange/citrus flavor finished off with a slight hint of bitterness and malts.

Mouthfeel: The beer goes down smoothly and is carbonated nicely too.

Overall: I figured I try this one out since I have never had it before. The EIPA is pretty mild mannered compared to the AIPA I am accustomed to drinking. Maybe I was looking for more, but I was slightly amused by this beer. I would like to try this beer on draft someday to get a better feel for it. Maybe EIPA's are more mild and this is how they normally taste. I will have to try a few times to really understand this type of beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2011 04:43:32 | More by Flounder57
Photo of akorsak


4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More McNeill's, courtesy of Coop in Lebanon, NH.

A: The EIPA is golden, a coppery brew with a few bright spots near the base of the glass. A huge, and I mean huge, head accompanies the pour, filling 2/3 of the glass with dense cragy foam. Plenty of lace follows.

S: Floral citric hops alongside biscuity malts. A nice combination that has a hop profile closer to the American IPA side of the fence.

T: Toffee and biscuit flavors drive the malty side of the IPA. The bready chewiness supports a rich hop profile that doesn't ignore its English heritage. Citrusy and floral, the hops have a very pleasant edge. The bitterness has orange flavors, softening the bite. The mix of orange hops and toffee grains is very nice. The mild bitterness mixing with sweetness. The tangy sweetness keeps me coming back.

M: The biscuity malts and sweet floral hops are a nice pairing, drinkable without getting too strong. A well-balanced beer is always welcome here.

D: A nice ale, chewy and hoppy without going overboard on either side. And another beer to check off in my Michael Jackson book.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2011 22:22:54 | More by akorsak
Photo of WesWes

New York

3.33/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The beer pours a beautiful amber color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is average. It has a light pale and crystal malt scent. The hop aroma is faint at best. English noble hops peak through, but not as much as most traditional English IPAs. The taste is decent. It has a dry, bitter flavor that melds with a traditional pale and crystal malt character. It's not overly bitter and it finishes a tad thin. The mouthfeel is decent as well. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an average IPA. It's lacking depth and hop character. I won't search this one out again.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2011 00:37:42 | More by WesWes
Photo of lovindahops

New York

3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saw another mcneills at brilbecks so I snagged it

A- has a normal malty ipa look but a massive head that does NOT go away! It is a machine! This head is monumental

S- a big malt hit with spices. Very strong exuberance of scent. Not characteristic of an ipa, but more so a spin on the style

T- it's a big malt slap. Again, peaks with spice and syrup.

M- creamy

D- not as good as the last mcneills brew I had. I could have another, but not craving it

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2010 03:56:36 | More by lovindahops
Photo of BeerPhan86

New York

2.15/5  rDev -41.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22 oz bomber. Distributor said that McNeill's just started distributing this November (purchased in Central New York).

A - Very cloudy dark copper in color with a big foamy white head. There is noticeable sediment in the glass and way too much in the bottom of my bottle.

S - Hints of citrus and earthy hops, but otherwise not too much going on.

T - Buttery like an amateur homebrew with very little hops. This honestly tasted like a poorly made homebrew and was a total letdown.

M - Medium creamy mouthfeel and nearly flat.

D - Glad I only bought one style from them. I did not even finish this (drain pour, on to better beers).

This was a huge letdown after really enjoying the McNeill's oatmeal stout last spring. I will probably remain very wary of purchasing from them again...

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2010 22:18:43 | More by BeerPhan86
Photo of CHickman

New York

3.03/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours cloudy amber orange in color with a creamy tan head, leaving decent lacing and layer of head on top as the beer goes down.

Smells of sweet malt and floral hops, some earthy tones and faint alcohol; hops were not as strong as expected when I ordered this.

Tastes of sweet malt, roasted grains, floral hops, caramel, toffee and it has a warm alcohol feel and kick to it. This was very malty, which I guess defines an English IPA, and perhaps my idea of an IPA is now skewed by the hop-bomb American IPA's that I'm used to so this seemed a little dull to me.

Smooth and creamy feel, but just a tad bit too harsh and bitter for my liking. It was OK, but not something I'd seek out again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-13-2010 02:27:54 | More by CHickman
Photo of david18

New York

3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had a sixteen ounce pour of this at the Amsterdam Ale House in Manhattan's upper west side. I was told by someone else that it tasted like an ESB, which made sense since it was an english style ipa. I liked it a lot. Like an English ipa, very dark in color and a little light on the hops. Very good flavor with a good malt character. I'll have this again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-09-2010 14:53:18 | More by david18
Photo of Soonami


3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had McNeill's Dead Horse IPA on-tap at Local 44 last night and I had not heard of the beer or brewery so I asked the barman for his opinion and he said it was good, so I tried it. The beer looked like a paler IPA, which is nice after a meal and a couple beers because usually these beers are better attenuated and less sweet. In the aroma, I picked up some herbal hops and a graham cracker maltiness. The beer was thin on the palate and the malt character was not as complex or developed as I would like. The hops served primarily to bitter but did not provide the amount of aroma or flavor that is found in the better IPA's, though it was very easy to finish off the pint at the end of the night.

I did not know that Dead Horse IPA was an English IPA when I ordered, and only found now here on BA. I think that this beer could use a more complex and larger grain bill and hop profile, either to make it more like the english or American versions of an IPA. To me, it seems more like a standard Pale Ale.

Serving type: on-tap

08-28-2010 14:39:40 | More by Soonami
Photo of potownbill

New York

4.33/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very enjoyable brew with good malty backbone with some bitter hops to balance.
Appearance: Cloudy Orange with a tan foamy head that adhered to the glass
Smell: Bready malt with some bitter hops
Taste: Mimics the smell. Surprised by the level of maltiness, which seemed to dominate the hops. Some hop bitterness, but not the least bit overpowering. mild alcohol bite.
Mouthfeel: Smooth.
Drinkability: Very smooth. Did not intend to drink the 22oz, but it was too good to share...

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2010 14:17:33 | More by potownbill
Photo of Seanibus


3.45/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy orange with a medium head. The aroma is slight and steely. The flavor is malty and bready, with light caramel and some light floral hops. There is a strong metallic bite. A citrusy bitterness sneaks in late, with a sticky, thick mouthfeel.

Serving type: on-tap

08-14-2010 19:55:47 | More by Seanibus
Photo of deapokid


3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Misconduct on 8/2, review is from notes:

This obscure (at least to me) IPA has a nice, puffy white head and rich orange color. Carbonation is hard to see because color is so deep (and bar lighting so dim), but I can tell that it's going to be refreshing and creamy.

Whiffs of citrus, hops and candy come to mind. The aroma could even be characterized as spicy. It's rather different for the style and the scent wouldn't point me in the direction of an IPA if I hadn't read it on the menu.

Malt is the star of the show here with hop bite, orange peel and pineapple playing second fiddle. The ending is dry, but never overpowering. Although it doesn't scream English IPA, it does strive for flavor and texture more than hop intensity. It also leaves a leathery flavor on the back of the tongue long after each sip.

The liquid itself is smooth from front to back and hop bite is too slight to damage the coating power of the liquid. It's also quite drinkable, despite the strikingly malty backbone. A bit more hops might vary the flavor profile, but that's being nitpicky.

This is an interesting diversion for IPA fans seeking an alternative to the norm.

Serving type: on-tap

08-10-2010 01:28:29 | More by deapokid
Photo of uustal

Rhode Island

3.38/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy yellow-orange with a below average white head. Minor lacing. A bready, yeasty, buttery toasted malt starts off and some pine and citrus hops balance the beer decently. Nothing really stands out and even a little bland. Good balance, but lacking true flavor. Still a decent brew.

Serving type: on-tap

07-20-2010 03:26:57 | More by uustal
Photo of metter98

New York

3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer poured light amber in color and is slightly hazy; it has good head retention properties.
S: There are light aromas of citrusy hops in the nose.
T: The taste is rather malty with notes of biscuits. There is light amount of bitterness, particularly in the aftertaste.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate with a slight amount of dryness in the finish.
D: The beer is relatively easy to drink but it didn't seem interesting enough to make me want to have another.

Serving type: on-tap

07-04-2010 01:24:13 | More by metter98
Photo of jfh


2.95/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hi folks, in NH for work and scored a bottle of Dead Horse Ale at a gas station quickie mart. My First review. I'm not impressed by cloudiness in an IPA. The bottle is marked best before last day of Feb, no year. It's June 2010. My take on this beer is very similar to the rest of the reviews. No excessive head, pours just fine. The aroma is a bit dusty to me and the flavor is dominated by a citrusy/belgian/spicy flavor that imo is not hops and detracts from the what I expect from an IPA. I can't (I don't think) taste cloudiness, but it looks nice and orange with a bit of lacing around the glass and the cloudiness is not right (IMO). If I was sitting in a pub in England and drinking this from a cask, maybe I'd think it was like an old time Ale, but it's way different from IPAs and bitters and best bitters and cask ales I've had in England. So, I'll drink it, but won't buy another and won't be requesting it in trade.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2010 02:30:12 | More by jfh
Photo of mostpoetsdo

Rhode Island

3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served at Pitchers Pub in Cumberland, RI.

A: Poured a dark hazy gold. A thin light white head, left some lacing.

S: A weak and tart citrus, with not too much hop presence.

T: Has a certain sweetness to it up front, but then the hops kick in to counteract the caramel malt taste. Pretty balanced, but wished for more hops.

M: Quite creamy and smooth, really easy to put down, the right amount of carbonation.

D: Enjoyable, but nothing special here.

Serving type: on-tap

03-28-2010 15:51:35 | More by mostpoetsdo
Photo of deltatauhobbit


3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My first taste of McNeill's of Vermont.

Pours... all head! I got about an inch of actual beer before my pint glass filled up with head, minor nuisance, color is golden with a touch of amber, plenty of head, too much so, but also leaves tons of lacing along the glass since it fades pretty slowly.

Smell is a blend of caramel malt and hops, neither overwhelming but work together, quite typical of an English IPA.

Taste is as expect from the aroma, a mix of caramel malt with hops, the aftertaste has a slight hop bitterness but doesn't overstay its welcome, carbonation seems flat at first taste (probably all went into the head) but livens up soon, definitely on the soft side though.

A decent English IPA, nothing exceptional, but less than $4 for a bomber it's hard to beat that at price.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2010 00:24:02 | More by deltatauhobbit
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McNeill's Dead Horse IPA from McNeill's Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 140 ratings.