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India Pale Ale - Pisgah Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
India Pale AleIndia Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

48 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 48
Hads: 88
Avg: 3.88
pDev: 10.82%
Wants: 10
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pisgah Brewing Co. visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: wcudwight on 05-09-2006

51.2 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
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Reviews: 48 | Hads: 88
Photo of mikesgroove
4.59/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ok, so now we know all about how much I love everything that goes on up in Black Mountain. Pisgah is far and away my favorite local brewery, and I make it a point to make trips up there as frequently as possible, especially when something new was out. Last week I was able to make my way up for a visit, because I just had to grab one of their new IPA's and try this. I mean the pale ale is insanely good, the Imperial IPA was to die for, how could the IPA be anything but utterly fantastic. Picked me up a growler and brought it home to enjoy over the weekend. Popped it open on Saturday night, and proud to say I finished it off the same evening. This sixty-four ounce beast was served at various temperatures just to try and bring out all the subtle flavors and nuances, but all were served in a lovely Middle Ages imperial pint glass.

A - Poured this one vigorously into the glass creating a very nice three finger high head of deep thick and sticky foamy off white lace. This reached a height of close to three inches before finally settling down to a thin layer of foam across the top of the glass about a half an inch thick that hung around throughout the entire session. Awesome side glass presentation on this one, really tremendously thick spider web like side glass presentation here, left streaking down the glass for hours after it was done. The color was a very thick and deep amber with a good amount of haze and cloudiness to it as well. Very nice, and you could see through it somewhat, creating a very nice golden copper hue throughout the glass. Some light carbonation bubbling up toward the surface could be seen throughout as well.

S - The aroma was thick and pungent, and off to an awfully good start. There were thick citrus bouquets dancing around the smell, creating just wonderful floral scents that really gave this a nice lively presence. Lots of sugar in here as well, as I was picking up a nice sweetness to it, maybe even a touch of honey in there as well, really coming together quite nicely and offering a very balanced approach to it. As it warmed some light, grain tried to mingle in but was quickly shut down by a nice pine resin bitterness.

T - The flavor was really quite nice. A classic IPA example here. Nothing really shredding about the bittering hop profile, it was rather subtle in its complexities and very nice in how balanced it was against the sugary profile that backed it up. The first flavor I noticed was a very nice orange note that came through, this was almost soaked with sugar it was coming through so sweet, a deep earthy malt profile was hiding out underneath of this, really giving it some depth and a nice overall sense of balance. Some decent pine notes coming in next and mingling with this and some pineapple like flavors. The finish was very strong, tons of grassy like hop flavors just riveting through the finish, really creating a tremendous dry feeling. Very long lasting flavor in here as well, really drawing every little last bit of flavor from your mouth before letting go. Very well done.

M - This was a very nice medium-bodied IPA. There was not too much carbonation in it, which left to it feeling a little thicker, which, was good IMO. It really held its own with some of the better ones I have had in that regard... Very strong finish, and it never for a moment felt dull or flat, and not a chance in heck this one was watered down at all, very solid.

D - As for the drink ability of this one, lets put it this way, I drank a growler in a night, will that suffice. No hint of alcohol at all in this, and at 7.5%abv, that is not unheard of, but still a nice little feat. Great flavors, and smooth as silk going down. Deep dry finish really had you looking back for some more when you were done. I would have loved to drink this every night.

Overall, I would score another for my boys up at Pisgah. This is definitely a very solid offering from them and something that will definitely not disappoint. More of a very well balanced and sweet IPA, then the mouth shreddingly bitter ones I get sometimes. A nice step up from the pale ale and a welcomed addition to their lineup. Looking forward to having this one again.

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Photo of cbros
4.58/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving type- 22 ounce bomber poured into a pint glass.

A- This beer is absolutely beautiful looking. The color is a deep orange/yellow with a nice looking carbonation line that flows from the bottom. The head is a white one finger that leaves a tiny white lace till the end.

S- I am picking up the usual tell tale IPA smells of citrus and hop. It also haapens to a sweet undertone to it as well.

T- Damn this is a great tasting IPA! It starts a little sweet but quickly reverts to a well balanced IPA. The dance between the bitter hop note and malty sweet plays till the end. Not an overpowering hop beer by any means, rather a very well balanced great tasting IPA. This beer reminds me a lot of the West Coast IPA's I have been trying recently, but I feel takes it a step further. I would love love love to have this beer available to me on a more regular basis. I could easily see this being a weekend regular if that was an option.

As you can tell above I am very happy to have finally given this a shot. My only regret is that I did not pick up more than 1 bottle of this. I will certianly have this again at the earliest convienece.

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Photo of DoctorB2B
4.4/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This was my first growler purchase ... exciting moment for me.

A: Amber/copper and beautiful. White head with lacing aplenty.

S: The smell of hops is mild but I got more of a spicy tinge.

T: Well balanced is what comes to mind. Like the aroma, the hops aren't overdone and is nicely offset by the malt character.

M: Mild oily & resin feel but not overdone

D: I would drink this every night if I had constant access to it. However, I don't so I'm cherishing every sip of this one.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
4.38/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From growler purchased at City Beverage in Winston-Salem, NC to nonic pint glass on 2/22/11
*From notes

A: Just a gorgeous, rich and dark amber hue. On a side note, it does appear to have been filtered. A 1.5 finger head and some of the thickest lacing I've seen in some time.

S: Alcohol esters and sweet ripe tropical fruit, followed by a subtle hint of fresh pine shavings.

T: The fruit envelopes my tastebuds. The reasonable amount of alcohol on this one follows on the mid-palate, leading to a really broad shouldered malt finish. This is one well defined and delicious beer.

M: Quite heavy for an AIPA, and it's got the perfect amount of carbonation to boot. Pisgah's India Pale Ale simply feels authentic, it feels real; like the brewmaster knew this could stand on it's own two feet and so he let it be. Well done good sir (or madame).

O: My first dance with Pisgah, and oh how wonderful it was. I can't stop gushing over the complex and downright wonderful AIPA they've produced. I'd heard nothing but glowing things about this small, organic brewery. Believe it when you hear it: this is worth seeking out.

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Photo of supercolter
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I very much enjoyed this IPA. Appearance is good, nice copper/red color. This beer has a slight head, but very tightly packed which leads to some decent lacing. Smell is also quite good, nice and piney with a bit of hops. The taste is even better as some of the earthiness comes through. The piney backbone is also there and a bit sweet in the finish. Mouthfeel is nice with medium body and nice oily feel. Drinkability is very good as well.

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Photo of atsprings
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice crisp copper orange with a decent head that leaves spotty lacing on the glass. Aroma is burnt caramel and some earthy pine hops. The taste is a nice blend of citrus hops and caramel malts creating a nice balance. Te beer is nice and crisp and the carbonation has held up very well for a two month old growler. This is a very enjoyable beer, and one I'd love to see in six-packs if Pisgah ever decides to go in that direction.

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Photo of Tripphop
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Second time trying out of a 22 oz bottle.

Recall from the first taste back in January, robust hop, big malt backbone, nice aroma of pine needles and lime zest.

Second bottle consumed 8 months later.. Hops have faded only the slightest amount. Pours a nice deep orange with reddish glow. Big frothy head with nice chunky white foam. Aroma has a nice mellow hop with a bready undertone. Taste is super. Big bold mouthfeel, crisp yet creamy, nice balance still with some time on it.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from tap into a shaker. Poured red-orange with a minimal white head. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of malt, citrus hops, and an earthy note. The flavor was of malt, earthy/piney hops, a slight nutty note, and cranberries. It had a medium feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this was a very nice and smooth IPA. The earthy hop note is a new one to me and was quite interesting. That being said, this isn't my favorite IPA I have ever had, but it surely is damn tasty. Very nice job on this one Pisgah!

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Photo of sholland119
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one in GatM from jraycee. Thanks!

A-Slightly hazy orange amber with a fluffy white head and a little lacing.

S-Earthy and piney hops with a light malt sweetness.

T-Tasty balance of earthy hops with some pine and a bit of citrus. A bit bitter in the finish but only a bit.

M-Medium bodied with good carbonation.

D-ABV 7.5% according to the label, a bit high for the style but taste is very mellow. I could drink this all night.


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Photo of ncvbc
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber, nearing brown. Medium head and spotty lacing but not much. Great color. Smell is a good balance of hops and malt. Sugared grapefruit and light caramel. Very nice though definitely not telling me it's a hop monster. Taste is much of the same but adds a spicy character that adds great complexity to the beer. I'm not sure where this comes from but I'm liking it a lot. Good mouthfeel with a light bitterness and more of a creamy texture. Easy drinking despite the 7.5% this holds. Different for an IPA and enjoyable. I'm glad I tried it.

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Photo of ballz50401
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a Samuel Adams perfect pint glass. Bottle code: #1011(1/11/11) Thanks to mikesgroove for the bottle.

Appearance: A lovely golden amber color. Nice amount of carbonatin. A strong puffy head with good lacing.

Smell: Piney, floral, and perfumy. Assertive toasty sweet malt character. Caramel and toffee notes.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Some floral and pine hop notes with the toasted caramel flavor. A very nice balance of flavors here. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with a nice dry crisp finish.

Overall: A nicely done IPA that has some good aroma and flavor characteristics. Very refreshing and an easy drinker for 7.5% abv.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at Greenlife in Asheville, NC. Into a pint glass.

Pours a clear coppery amber with at least 2 fingers of off-white head. Thin creamy retention leaves a rich cascade of sticky lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma is floral and spicy with a dank herbal quality about it (shocking I know!) and a tangy backing of tropical fruits, caramel, and bready malts.

The taste is fairly bitter at first but then evens out nicely as this warms. The hop profile is earthy and spicy with a touch of a resinous edge to it. The bitterness is nicely balanced by a smooth backbone of lightly toasted malts and caramel and a kiss of sweet fruity citrus. Finishes dry and spicy with some lingering residual sweet notes. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a soft and creamy carbonation and well hidden ABV that just helps this glide so easily across the palate. Nice.

Really nice IPA from Pisgah here, with a hoppy but well balanced profile and a superior feel and drinkibility that made this quite the tasty and thirst quenching quaff.

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Photo of GatorBeerNerd
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A nice pop when I opened the growler which lets me know its nice and fresh. Poured from the growler into a Sierra Nevada Hop Tulip glass.

A: Pours a beautiful copper color with a nice frothy finger thick off-white head. The head does recede a bit from the level it is at pour, but seems to retain itself well. There is a bit of lacing but there is not rings left behind by each swallow.

S: A hint of caramel malt aroma is overwhelmed by a load of citrus and floral hop aromas. It smells good, but nothing to shoot it into the top level score range for me.

T: A nice balanced IPA. The caramel malt sweetness is not overwhelmed by the hops like in the nose. They work together well to have an initial sweetness that is washed away with a nice bitterness when the hops kick in.

M: A medium body with a nice creamy mouthfeel from the carbonation.

D: An amazingly drinkable IPA that goes down almost too easy. Another great beer from Pisgah.

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Photo of plaid75
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewery.

Poured a hazy orange hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was very good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a very fresh citric and tea like hop aroma alongside a soft doughiness.

The taste consisted of piney and city's hops atop a slightly grainy pale malt. A touch of sweetness noted as well.

The mouthfeel was toward the softer side of the style.

Overall a very nice IPA. Super fresh sample.

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Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ffejherb for sharing a growler of this one. Also shared with Sierrags and akorsak.

A-Copper with a medium white head that reduced to a thin film and left spotty lacing.

S-Initial blast of musty herbalness with a following of citrus and grapefruit. All backed well with a healthy dose of sweet malt.

T-A combo of earthy/spicy/piney/citrus bitterness all melding well with a nice sweet caramel support system.

M-Medium bodied with a long lasting dry bitter finish.

D-A bit different than I remember, maybe the use of different hops, but this is still tasty. Pisgah is certainly one of the best breweries around!

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Photo of gford217
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler pour at the HMoG at the Brick Store.

Pours a light golden amber with a fluffy white head that leaves some decent lacing as it recedes to a ring.

The hops kick pretty hard up front with an initial earthy aroma with hints of citrus underneath. The caramel malts are subtle but present in the nose as well.

The taste starts with the earthy hops which have a nice opening bitterness which is balanced pretty well with the toasted malt backbone. There are some pine hops to provide a bitterness through the finish.

The mouthfeel is prickly but still smooth with good carbonation.

This is definitely a drinkable IPA and another great brew from Pisgah.

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Photo of CrellMoset
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pisgah IPA, on tap at the Pisgah tasting room, served in a traditional American pint glass.

Appearance: Comes a light orange amber, hazy as hell, with some visible fast carbonation that's very fine-bubbled. The one-finger of almost-white head of average retention leaves a big thick collar, a few sparse strings of lace, and a sheen of foam. Good start.

Aroma: Great big grapefruit and light, herbal hoppiness constitute the majority of the hop presence here, and it's backed up by a relatively sweet but well-masked doughy, medium-roast backbone.

Taste: Big mint and other various leafy notes, a healthy amount of citrus zest, and slightly less pungent but nonetheless detectable hints of pine over a sea of crisp, roasted, biscuity malts, accompanied by a moderate to perhaps slightly above moderate level of bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Lots of effervescence in this one, leading to a crisp, lively, bubbly body. Cuts through the medium thickness rather well.

Drinkability: Big and bold, but very east coast. This is a really solid IPA, flavorful, seemingly reasonably abv%ed, crisp, and bright. I wouldn't mind seeing this one bottled - could be very sessionable.

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Photo of glid02
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a growler of this at Bruisin Ales in Asheville.

Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a one-finger off-whte head. The head dissipates into a patchy layer of bubbles on top and a thick ring around the glass. Lacing is pretty sticky.

Smells of piney and floral hops with a good amount of malt sweetness.

Tastes very good. Sweet malt flavors coupled with piney flavors up front. There's also a bit of a citrus flavor with light vanilla making its way out as the beer warms. Solid bitterness at the end.

Mouthfeel is very good. Very good thickness joined by good carbonation make this a heavy yet smooth beer.

Drinkability is good. I shared the growler with a few people, but I'm not ashamed to say I did the most damage. Very easy to drink.

Overall this was a solid beer and I'm not at all disappointed in this brewery after hearing a lot of hype. I wish I'd bought a few more growlers while I was up there.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.06/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from mikesgroove, thanks Mike! This IPA is on the darker side, medium copper colored and hazy, with nice thick foamy top that retained forever. The aroma is really toasty, kind of reminds me of an English IPA more than an American style, with some citrus and herbal notes underneath. The taste is likewise balanced, caramel malts and light grapefruit hops, a little bitterness in the aftertaste but definitely not too much. Really, this is a well-done amount of balance in an IPA, the malts present in a bicuit and toast way rather than sweet toffee, much more to my liking than most balanced IPA's.

Medium bodied with light carbonation, addictively drinkable. This was a real treat that I'd love to get again somethime.

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Photo of oberon
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On my weekend trip in Asheville I drank alot of Pisgah stuff and brought alot home with me,this being one of them I brought back.Poured into a standard pint glass a deep burnt orange with a thinner lacey white head,resiny hop really sticks out in the nose,a mix of tropical fruit and caramel comprise the other aroma traits.Pretty balanced for an American IPA,again a mix of resin and tropical-like fruitiness intertwined with a hefty caramel base.Smooth going down and not a bitter bomb,nice hop compleity to the this N.C. brewed IPA.

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Photo of DCon
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on-tap @ the Mellow Mushroom in Asheville, NC for $5. Tapped from an unknown tap handle (ordered from table) & received in a 16oz Pint Glass.

Aroma- Has a huge grassy and nice hop aroma. Very sweet and good for the style.

Appearance- Received with a .5 finger head that has average retention. Has a dark reddish/copper colored body with semi hazing. Leaves thick lacing behind.

Flavor- Medium hop flavor from the beginning with well blended citrus, pine, and fruity flavors. Medium hop bitterness at the finish. Not as sweet as the aroma but more of a dry finish.

Mouthfeel- Medium-Full Bodied, Lightest Carbonation, Smooth, Creamy, and goes down like warm nectar.

Overall Impression- Not sure what they keep the temp. of the kegs but the semi-warm presentation of this IPA made it even easier to appreciate the beer. Would love to see this again in another beer bar here in Asheville or even @ Pisgah (yet I'll be drinking other Pisgah beers if making it there). Get some of this!

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Photo of aubuc1
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

growler poured in to a stein type glass.

pours a deep orange with an off whie head.

smell is piney with a hint of biscuit and some citrus.

taste is sharp first then a little bitter with a dry finish.

very easy drinking beer that if anything is a little thin. these will go down very well. nice beer from pisgah.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

64oz growler received as a surprise from the wonderful gent that is goRideYourBike. Mike, you're da maan. Split this with DRINKNDRIVE earlier tonight; into my Russian River pint glass

A: Deep copper with some mild haze. Dense tan head that recedes rather quickly to a disk leaving some spectacular lacework.

S: Sharp hop bitterness up front with tons of pine and some citrus. Hops are pretty ridiculously fresh with an earthy character to them. There's a mild caramel sweetness in the back to round things out.

T/M: Opens up with a lot of sharp, bitter pine hops with a mild caramel sweetness. As I let this sit in my glass a while, the fresh, earthy hop flavor asserts itself before a piney bitterness takes over on the finish. Light to medium in body, this beer has great carbonation and a solid, bitter finish. Wonderful.

D: Half a growler of this proved to be no problem. I do wish they dropped the ABV a bit, though.

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Photo of BlackBelt5112203
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz pour into a pint glass on tap at the Pisgah taproom.

L – Medium amber color with a 1-finger cream-colored head. Decent retention with some patches of lacing. Clear with lots of bubbles.

S – Lots of caramel malt and lots of grapefruit-forward hops. Very balanced.

T – Follows the aroma nicely. It starts off sweet with caramel malt and some sweet orange flavors and then progresses to a nicely bitter grapefruit hop finish. Again, very balanced for an IPA.

F – Medium-bodied, good carbonation, a sticky, chewy, and mouth-coating feel, and a bitter and dry finish. Bitter grapefruit hops linger for a nice while.

O – This is a very tasty, very balanced, and very drinkable IPA. I really have nothing else to say about it. It’s just a very solid beer and a great example of a nicely-balanced IPA. Cheers, Pisgah!

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Photo of ffejherb
4.03/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler pour into shaker pint glass on 11/16/08. Shared with Deuane, akorsak and SierraGS. Thanks to greenvilleguitar for sending this as part of Growling at the Moon 2007-08 (cycle #2).

A - Hazy medium to dark copper-colored body with orange tones and two fingers of creamy beige head that settled into a quarter inch of retention and left lots of sticky lace. Body is carbonated rather modestly.

S - Hop aroma is pretty earthy and herbal with a bit of citrus hinting at grapefruit. Some floral and pine notes also emerge. Malt is primarily sweet and caramely.

T - Juicy citrus fruit makes an early appearance with grapefruit notes and bitter rind, followed by a little bit of grass and herbs in the middle. A balancing sweet malt character persists throughout with hints of caramel and brown sugar.

M - Medium body with a soft, creamy texture and moderate carbonation. Hops provide a lingering bitterness on the palate.

D - Solid IPA that is on the bitter side of the spectrum. While the malt offers a bit of sweetness, the hops are king with this IPA. Good stuff!

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India Pale Ale from Pisgah Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.