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Innis & Gunn India Pale Ale - Innis & Gunn

Not Rated.
Innis & Gunn India Pale AleInnis & Gunn India Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

42 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 42
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 3.46
pDev: 14.74%
Wants: 3
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Innis & Gunn visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  7.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: MeisterBurger on 10-30-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 | Reviews: 29 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of justinm4bama
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

justinm4bama, Aug 18, 2014
Photo of Sellen
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Sellen, Jul 23, 2014
Photo of datalager
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

datalager, Jul 20, 2014
Photo of rogerdandy
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

rogerdandy, Jul 08, 2014
Photo of Stalgondo
4/5  rDev +15.6%

Stalgondo, May 09, 2014
Photo of DamageCase76
3/5  rDev -13.3%

DamageCase76, Jan 04, 2014
Photo of Mdodge8837
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Mdodge8837, Nov 06, 2013
Photo of Duncanster
4/5  rDev +15.6%

Duncanster, Sep 09, 2013
Photo of speak72
4.25/5  rDev +22.8%

speak72, Aug 08, 2013
Photo of vauxhaulastra
4.5/5  rDev +30.1%

vauxhaulastra, Jun 08, 2013
Photo of cdawg11
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

cdawg11, Apr 10, 2013
Photo of Molson2000
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Molson2000, Jan 29, 2013
Photo of mnixon86
3/5  rDev -13.3%

mnixon86, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of tbeckett
3.65/5  rDev +5.5%

Bottle my boss brought back from Halifax. From notes.

A - Poured a copper colour with good carbonation and a one finger white head. Bright. Left a little lace and a half finger of retention.

S - Earthy with a light citrus note, vanilla, oak, and caramel.

T - Caramel, oak is stronger but not overly strong, citrus hop again. Quite sweet but the hop presence is mellowing.

M - Medium body with good carbonation and a sweet finish with a light bitterness.

O/D - Oak adds an interesting twist to a traditionally un-interesting style IMO. Not too shabby.

tbeckett, Sep 06, 2011
Photo of beerdrifter
4.2/5  rDev +21.4%

Picked this up at the biggest beer store in the UK, Beers of Europe Ltd. Clear golden pour with a tinge of amber. Quickly fading two finger head with nice lacing. The nose if full of oak and caramel malt with hints of butterscotch, vanilla and bourbon. The taste mirrors the nose but with more intensity. Tons of really nice oaky bourbon, vanilla, caramel, butterscotch and a really subdued, buttery English hoppiness hiding in the background. The mouthfeel is sweet, slightly syrupy, but not so much to hurt the drinkability. There was almost no hop bitterness which made me recheck the bottle and verify that this was indeed the IPA. The lack of any real hop profile makes it seem like it's not properly categorized. Don't get me wrong, it's a really nice beer, but not an IPA. I'm confused as to how I should rate it. I love anything aged in oak so it's fabulous in that regard. But I'm still a little disappointed that it didn't live up to what was advertised. With that said, I just cracked another one. Very nice!

beerdrifter, May 31, 2011
Photo of DoctorStrangiato
2.98/5  rDev -13.9%

Poured a 330-ml bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance - Solid gold colour with minimal head, reduced to a thin ring of bubbles within a minute. Slight carbonation visible.

Smell - Decent aroma of oak reminiscent of the Original Ale these guys produce. Very little hops versus what I would expect from the style.

Taste - Oaky, malty flavour with fairly flat middle. Does not fade with a burst of hops, really very little hop presence in this beer. As a side note this beer is listed at 7.7% alcohol by volume and doesn't show it at all as the flavour covers nicely.

Mouthfeel - Nothing offensive with this beer, its soft, warming effect perpetually welcome as with the other offerings from this brewer.

Overall - this cost $5 for the bottle and I expected something different, something more. I don't believe I would get it again although there's nothing wrong with it, it doesn't live up to the expectation. I prefer the original if I'm planning on having an Innis & Gunn, both for the price and the taste.

DoctorStrangiato, May 01, 2011
Photo of joemcgrath27
3.3/5  rDev -4.6%

Recommended, or maybe 'sold', by a guy at a local beer hot spot, indicating they are the only game in town carrying this
A - crystal clear bubbly golden, respectable white head retained at a thin covering
S - fruity sweetness, woody richness, some toasty grain, and very subtle hops
T - grainy malt, light citrus and herbal hop, oaky, fruity sweet, alcohol bite, not bad but not enough hop profile for an IPA
M - strong carbonation kick, thin with some alcohol bite, finishing dry
D - its not a bad beer and I do enjoy the unique aspect, but its just not hoppy enough to be considered with typical IPA's in my opinion, still tasty and easy drinking, especially given the 7.7%

joemcgrath27, Mar 31, 2011
Photo of andrenaline
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

This came as a recommendation at the local bottle shop.

A - Pours a crystal clear copper colour with a thin layer of head, little retention and no lacing.

S - Quite unique with wooden, smoked, peaty, hops and some very prominent caramel notes and some ground coffee.

T - The 'oaked' characteristics are definitely prominent with the wooden peaty flavours complementing the sweet caramel notes. Hop presence is grassy and holds a bit of a sweet corn flavour to it. Unique combination indeed.

M - No complaints in this department, solid carbonation lift that goes down smooth.

O - Overall a tasty offering from Innis & Gunn, though at $5 a bottle, there's better beer to buy.

andrenaline, Mar 26, 2011
Photo of laituegonflable
3.9/5  rDev +12.7%

Pours a murky-brown-amber and I've unfortunately got some floaties, not sure if it was a decanting problem or something to do with the beer. They look very protein-rich, anyway. Head is off-white and a bit slim, just a whispy cloud after a couple of minutes. Lace is quite nice and sticky. Don't look bad, don't look great either.

Smell is extremely sweet, with massive vanilla coming off. Caramel malt base blending with that whiskeyed oak aroma, giving vanilla beans and a touch of fresh-ground coffee as well. Almost Irish coffee really, with a faint booziness apparent as it warms up. I would like it more bitter and grounded, but the sweetness is pleasant and complex.

Taste begins with a fair amount of sweet grain, barley blending with oatmeal, with a caramelised and almost honeyed edge. This quickly takes on those sweet oak notes, giving me strong vanilla, creme anglaise and yes, even a touch of wood (wood you believe it!) Slight kiss of alcohol warmth as it reaches the apex of my mouth and then a welcome earthiness that doesn't quite reach bitter, on the finish, making it out not quite cleanly. Nevertheless a solid beer; well imbued with tasty wood notes. I just feel like more IPA notes - even a Burtonised IPA - would complement the sweetness more successfully. Would love to see Marston's Old Empire oak-aged in this way.

A little bit thin on the feel, which means that defence is lacking for what fizz is there. There's not too much though so it's not bad.

A tasty brew, and the balance is struck well enough to go down pretty easily.

laituegonflable, Feb 11, 2011
Photo of NATOuk
3.78/5  rDev +9.2%

Appearance:
Pours a clear amber with a thick head which dissipates to a small ring which clings to the glass. A gentle stream of small bubbles rising to the surface.

Smell:
A very distinctive vanilla and toffee smell, less so than I remember with original Innis & Gunn but definitely there.

Taste:
Very interesting - The sweet vanilla/toffee taste comes through initially but gives way to a light hoppy bitterness at the back of the mouth. Feels balanced.

Mouthfeel:
Medium carbonation, about right for this style.

Drinkability:
A very easy drinking beer, although one to be savoured - perhaps only in a small quantity of 1 or 2 in an evening.

NATOuk, Jan 24, 2011
Photo of CrazyDavros
3.63/5  rDev +4.9%

Pours amber with a small head.
Nose shows lots of vanilla, butterscotch and woody oak. Absolutely crazy. Very smooth. Not much actual hops or malt show, just a faint grassy note. Still very nice though.
Similar oaky flavours, but a little bit of sweet malt enters. Not much of an IPA.
Nice moderate carbonation.

CrazyDavros, Jan 03, 2011
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.83/5  rDev +10.7%

Pours a very clear amber-golden colour, almost coppery, with a full, but large bubbled and extremely cratered head of white foam. Head is fed by some exceptionally large-bubbled and extremely vigorous carbonation, which is the only thing which seems to keep it going. It looks as though it would happily subside if given the opportunity. The carbonation is somewhat too extreme for me, but otherwise, it's a decent enough look to it.

Nose is... extremely unusual. Masses, upon masses of fresh oak character, implying the beer was lain upon new oak. But the freshness in the body and the aromas released by the effervescence give it fruity notes, and almost a skunky character. Together these mingle into odd nuances of jam-filled doughnuts, unroasted coffee beans and lemon-grass. It's like you don't quite know where the aroma is going to go next. I'm not sure I've had such an oak-heavy beer before - one where the oak itself provides the flavour rather than whatever was in the oak beforehand. It's quite a unique experience.

Taste is surprisingly boozy, and with the oak, it gives it a very whisky-like character. Vanilla-oak on the front, before a lightly noticeable hop bitterness on the back comes through to feebly battle with the huge woody flavours of the oak. Together, a light peach and apricot sweetness is created.

Body is quite full, although the smooth vanilla characters accentuate this fact more than the body itself. Slightly hot and astringent alcohol characters on the finish, which appear in a way that neither the oak nor the hops can counteract.

It's an extremely unusual beer, and almost an unusually extreme beer. The oak is exceptionally pronounced, and overwhelms most of the other characters. My guess is this is only substantially hoppier when compared to others in the Innis & Gunn range, the oak takes on a far, far more prominent role.

Still, all up it's a tasty brew, and the weird oddities in the flavour make it all the more exciting. I'm very pleased to have tried it.

lacqueredmouse, Dec 12, 2010
Photo of biboergosum
3.9/5  rDev +12.7%

A few years ago, my girlfriend, tired of a particular episode of my beer wankery, insisted that my drinking buddy and I do a blind taste test of Innis & Gunn regular, and this IPA. We failed to correctly identify the two beers then; maybe I can see why now...

This beer pours a clear, medium golden copper hue, with two fingers of foamy off-white head, which leaves an irregular horizon of lace around the glass in its wake. Its smells of wet boozy wood, the seaside, toffee, and vanilla. The taste is bready, woody malt, followed by a warming toffee sensation, some orchard fruitiness, and herbal, somewhat briny hops. The carbonation is present, but shy, the body smooth, creamy, with just a wee bit of alcohol astringency. It finishes off-dry, with a diminishing breadiness, and an ascendant dry, bitter herbal booziness.

Well, the differences are pretty clear to me now between this and the standard I&G: the IPA is less about the sweet barrel characteristics, and more about what I imagine hops from Islay would taste like...

biboergosum, Oct 28, 2010
Photo of StJamesGate
3.98/5  rDev +15%

Pours amber yellow with a thin ring of foam. Saltwater taffy, butterscotch, vanilla and wood on the nose. Werther's malts with scotch understones followed by spice and barley hops. Sweet finish. Medium, chewy, oily with some burn.

Dangerous candy beer. Hops not as forward as the label claims, but still a heavyweight.

From the Deveney's of Dundrum beer festival.

StJamesGate, Sep 10, 2010
Photo of StephenRich
4.53/5  rDev +30.9%

One day in 2004 Innis & Gunn changed my life when I stepped into a bar and order a Scottish pale ale aged in whisky barrels. Then in 2006 Innis & Gunn teased me with a limited edition India Pale Ale which at the time may have been the best beer I had ever had. I say teased because it was only available for a short period of time, then, gone forever. Or so it seemed. Three years later during the Christmas of 2009 Innis & Gunn brought to the LCBO a gift pack with three beers and a glass. The pack contained the Original, Rum Cask, and yes, the IPA.

With the opportunity to score some Innis IPAs again I grabbed six gift packs and cherished the IPAs that were now back in my possession. I still have a few friends who hold the IPA as the best Innis & Gunn, and some who claim it to be the best beer that they have ever had. I still debate the the Triple Matured is my favorite Innis & Gunn, and also the Rum cask after being left to age for a few months has a beautiful bouquet of flavors.

In either case, I love the IPA, and this weekend I polished of the very last one in my collection; a proud but also sad moment.

But we cannot focus on the sorrows of finishing the last of the IPAs, I would much rather resonate on the beauty and full character of the beer which made me love it so much in the first place. The first IPA was released as a special edition and came in a handsome golden brown box barring a more original style logo. Without a question is was an amazing example of what Innis & Gunn can do. It was created to mimic history as much as possible, and thus hops were added directly to the oak casks in which the beer was aged.

This did create an all new Innis & Gunn with the same smooth caramel and rich butterscotch character as the original, but now with a crisp and lightly zesty hop bite. This new Innis was distinctly refreshing and a welcome addition to the Innis & Gunn family. So how would the new 2009 IPA do?

I cracked open this IPA at about 8C (45F) and poured it into a proper Innis & Gunn glass. It poured smooth and softly built an airy white one inch head which faded slowly to a film on the surface of the beer. The beer glowed at me with orange and amber gold, and deep brownish red tones fully embedded into the body of the beer. It is very close to the original, but hazy and lightly opaque with more yellow and orange than mahogany and gold.

The nose was a crisper and herbal version of the original Innis. Light caramel comes through again with faint oak, vanilla, and soft berries. This time though, with buttery sweetness comes a zesty earthy hop character, new to the Innis & Gunn. It has now a refreshing aroma to it, more quenching to the nose but I must say, less appetizing.

A mouthful of this ripe IPA does open a huge flow of flavors and a newly quenching characteristic to an already fantastic beer. First warm oaky caramel glides over your tongue with pale malt sweetness and soft biscuits. Lighter less melty butterscotch flows in across the cheeks and still vanilla and malt sweetness show their presence. But here is now a new sensation - the malts are slightly lighter and less sticky; a smooth undertone of hop bitter is here balancing the sweet gooey flavors of the Innis & Gunn.

The original was so appetizing because it has these great luscious caramelized flavors and almost no bitterness to it. This IPA though is mouthwatering and supremely quenching new new flavors of earthy hops and zesty bitter notes. It quenches and satisfies like the original can't, leaving you open for a huge range of foods.

The finish is crisp and clean leaving you with light vanilla and lemon zest. Again, a brand new sensation for the Innis & Gunn, and a very welcome one. I still don't think that this is the best Innis ever. It is really delicious, and I do wish it was regularly available, however to me the hops remove some of the dense richness of the beer that I fell in love with. I love the original for the deep soft and sensual flavors - if I really want refreshing, I'll grab an American IPA of sorts like the Southern Tier IPA.

In any case, I severely enjoyed my last IPA (for now), and something tells me that it will be back in Canada eventually.

StephenRich, Aug 22, 2010
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Innis & Gunn India Pale Ale from Innis & Gunn
80 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.