Big Hop Harvest Ale - East End Brewing Company

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Big Hop Harvest Ale
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very good

87 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 87
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 12.97%
Wants: 5
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
East End Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.40% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beergeek279 on 09-20-2005

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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 40
Reviews by kimbo33:
Photo of kimbo33
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this on tap in Wexford last week. Nice beer with a pleasant aroma. Mine was a bit foamy, could have been the pour but it made the carbonation a bit lower. Overall I liked the beer, didn't know it was 7.4% ABV! Smooth consider the higher alcohol content. Would have again.

More User Reviews:
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mad Mex Robinson had this brew flowing. Appearance is amber hued with an off white fluffy head leaves thick lacing around the pint, nice. Aromatics are this brews highlights flowing tones of some of my favorite "C" hops namingly cascade citrus and floral notes with a bigger malt profile to back up the fresh hop harvest. Flavor profile is lucious, upfront bitterness with balancing alcohol and malt sweetness combines very nicely beefier than the average Big Hop very nice. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with some slightly resinous hop oils gliding across the palate tame carbonation that doesn't over do it in anyway. Drinkability is definitely pretty high with this brew beware it's probably around 7% or so, great treat from a local hardworking brewpub.

Photo of Stigs
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured from growler filled at the brewery on Thursday...served in a standard pint glass

A - pours with a solid finger of loose, very creamy eggshell colored foam. settles quickly and leaves random wet lacing on the sides of the glass. the beer is hazy, very dark gold in color.

S - very fresh hop oils, grassy and leafy. loads of sweet caramel hops, just a very subtle twinge of earthy spice.

T - wet, very earthy hops. some lightly sweetened citrus, cut grass, and a bit of pine. sweet caramel and intense biscuity malts just about dominate especially in the finish. very "wet" in the sense of the hop flavors, minimally bitter.

M - medium, creamy body...playful prickly carbonation. finishes quite dry with lingering grassy sweetness.

D - good, and super fresh...but the hop profile just doesnt do a whole lot for me in this year's compared to past releases. lacking a bitter punch through the end, this drinks much more like and English PA than anything else. still pretty yummy and goes down easy.

Photo of Kegatron
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Capone's (Norristown, PA)

Pours a hazy medium amber (with a coppery sheen) with a thin head of off-white foam. A solid retention yields a decent cascade of lacing down the sides of the glass that doesn't stick. The aroma smells of fresh, earthy hop esters (with a bit of dankness to it), spice, light citrus, and some underlying sweetness.

The taste is fresh, tingling hop profile with a damp and earthy to feel to it that is well balanced by a sweet, supportive mix of tangy citrus and caramel malts. The overall finish is bitter and dry. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a tingling carbonation up front that spreads out into a more creamy feel in the backend.

Nice take on the Hop Harvest style by East End with a earthy hop profile that practically had me picking the dirt out of my teeth but is still well balanced and easygoing enough with the feel to stay quite drinkable. Good stuff.

Photo of Kolsch
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap: Kegged date 9.18.08.

Appearance is cloudy 1 inch head that looks very inviting.

Smell is sweet caramel hops.

Taste: The first taste is of cinnamon spice, pepper, clove and then hop. I would attribute this to the wet hop additions. The hops really take a background to the spice aspect. I can see non-hopheads really enjoying this.

Overall, a well done and unique Harvest Ale from Scott. I didn't get a chance to try last years offering but will look forward to this from now on.

Photo of philbe311
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Al's of Hampden...

A - A fingers worthy of creamy off-white head quickly fades to a splotchy lacing... An extremely hazed murky gold color...

S - Sweet mandarin oranges... A mild sweet bready maltiness... Earthy with a vague spice quality...

T - Loaded with a subdued malty character... Bready... Biscuity... Mild caramel... A mild citrus hop presence... Grassy and earthy... A distinct spiciness becomes appearant as this one warms...

M - On the lighter side of medium bodied... The carbonation is slightly subdued... Ever so slightly on the thin side...

D - Utterly quaffable... Utterly sessionable... Gulp, after gulp, after gulp... There's nothing outstanding about this one, but it's a super enjoyable and hides its 7.4% ABV extremely wel...

Photo of wingman14
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark orange with almost red hints, a frothy off white head that sticks around. The smell is pungent, a delicious aroma of hops, a few sweet notes. This beer is very crisp with sweet hops up front and a hoppy full finish. I was surprised at the amount of flavor and the lack of bitterness. There was no real bitterness to speak of. This one has a medium mouthfeel and nice carbonation. This beer has depth but sticks to the hop flavor and does it very well. This is a must for any hop fan, not overwhelming, great flavor and smoothness to the beer. Very enjoyable!

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.02/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. Growler poured a mere hour ago at the brewery.

4.0 A: Hazy brownish-orange copper color. One finger of creamy white head with average retention and modest lacing.

4.5 S: Wow. What an elegant mix of grassy and herbal hops with a touch of citrus. One of the best smelling IPAs I've ever had, which is saying something. Malts add a noticeable sweetness from crystal malts. If it were a bit stronger, this would have been an easy 5.

4.0 T: First thought was: Is this an IPA? No, it isn't, but it's a damn tasty APA. Very fruity, but not so much citrusy. Rather it's peach and apricot heavy, then orange. Formitable bitterness which works well with a touch of crystal sweetness.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good creaminess and ultra smooth, but could use a touch more carbonation, especially since this is basically straight from the tap.

4.0 D: Very good beer all-around. Tasty and easy to put down. It probably wasn't worth the price of $13 for the growler fill, but it satisfied my beer drinking needs and I don't mind shelling out a couple extra bucks for the little guy.

Photo of OneDropSoup
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass, creating a finger of head (this is at least 24 hours after the growler was poured, so not bad). A hazy, translucent amber tea color with light orange highlights. Various speeds of rising bubbles, some lacing.

Smell is very smooth & nice, mostly grapefruit & sweet orange scents. There's that little bit of hop bite too, crisp. Great smell.

Taste is pretty remarkable, in my opinion: nice mix of lemon, orange zest, some semi-dry iced tea flavors, a little bread crust sweetness, some other fruit (cherries, maybe). A lot more balanced than I'd anticipated, very smooth & refreshing.

The mouthfeel is very iced tea-like, going down easy & leaving just a tiny bit of sugary viscosity. As is my experienced with most growlers, it goes flat quickly but really isn't a problem here. Really drinkable for a non-session piece.

I gotta say, I was very pleasantly surprised by this beer. I'm not a huge fan of Big Hop, & I figured this would just be a hoppier version of such, but the wet-hopping really added some delicious & unexpected notes.

Photo of foureyedgeek
4.2/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an East End growler filled October 5 and sealed until this evening.

Pours a cloudy copper color with a fluffy finger or so of head that leaved moderate lacing behind as you drink it.

Smells of hops (duh) citrus and a little like fresh cut grass as well as a little malty sweetness.

In the mouth you get that malty sweetness first and then the Big Hop kick, plus the added hops flavor from the wet hop. Not that I can tell that they are we hops specifically, just the difference between this and the 'regular' Big Hop. An added level of hoppiness, let's say. As it warms its even more prominent.

Smooth feel and crisp finish as well as a very well hidden alcohol make this a very drinkable beer.

Go East End!

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy pale orange-ish color with an off white head. Aromas that are hoppy and earthy. As for in the taste, a maltyer hop taste and a bit dy in alll the right places. A smooth small hop mouthfeel and a nice dry hoppy aftertaste. A very nice harvest, balanced with a hoppy dry end.

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.28/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A. Pours cloudy orange with a pillowy off white head. A little lacing effect. Hop blossoms were floating in the growler and poured into my beer.

S. Light on the nose surprisingly. Floral hops and some malt.

T. With the hops floating around in there, I expected intense hoppyness. It was hoppy, but the hop used was delicate and floral, with some earthyness to it and a lingering bitterness. The malt was sweet (caramel?) Spicy Hops linger on the palate

M. Pretty smooth and refreshing.

D. This is a very well balanced drinkable IPA. Worthy of a growler pick up from time to time.

Photo of Pukstopper
4.75/5  rDev +18.5%

Pours in a pint glass at the Wexford Ale House. Nice deep bronze color but not opaque. Sort of cloudy. Head stayed a little while and lacing was good. Not real hoppy tasting but a very nice follow typical of a good APA. Had it with fried pickles and it paired great. Wife took a sip and said she liked it and she isn't a Hoppy kind of person. BTW she is drinking the Thirsty dog Barktober.

Photo of Cylinsier
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


Pours a hazy dark orange with a medium and finely packed white head with great retention.

Smells of piney and floral hops over slightly citrusy malts. The hops are the primary scent.

The taste follows suit. Piney, floral hops. The bitterness is moderate considering the otherwise strong hop character.

Feels moderate, on the fuller side, with fine tingly carbonation on the roof of the mouth.

Great above average IPA, easy to drink, a bit deceptive in its strength, maybe falls just shy of being superb but is definitely very good.

Photo of stakem
3.54/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served in a nonic at Piper's pub. The brew appears a clouded orange color with a frothy white topping. A full wall of lace hangs on the glass as the cap slowly fades.

The aroma is lightly vegetative like many fresh hop ales are but it isnt distracting. There is an accenting rindy note that gets somewhat fruity and floral as it warms up with little to no grain backing.

The flavor is quite grassy with that same vegetative hop aspect that is pronounced in the nose. it has a rindy bitterness zesty aspect across the back with a clean fresh grain appeal that hardly provides any contrasting sweetness.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest level of carbonation. It is easy drinking for the most part and a decent example of a fresh hop ale. I would drink it again but im not in a hurry to go out of my way to have it again.

Photo of terrapinfan88
4.07/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Hazy orange with brown tint, spongy one finger head, carbonation clings to the sides of the glass relatively motionless

Smell: Pear, bright fruits, pine, dry and earthy malts

Taste: Not as hoppy as I expected going by the name and the smell a little grapefruit, and pear

Mouthfeel: Light carbonation, slight dryness on the pallet, quite refreshing

Drinkability: Very drinkable. The alcohol did not seem very evident in the taste at all, which might get you in trouble, or you may just end up listening to loud music and dancing in your buddy's garage at a less the desirable hour for the neighbors, but nothing you cant chalk up to boys being boys right?

Photo of jeffbearer
4.31/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer at the Harvest Ale Debut last night at the Pittsburgh Deli Company. It was served on both draught and cask. I'm reviewing the hand pumped version.

The beer poured a rich cloudy orange with a creamy white head. The aroma was hard for me to pick up; the bar was a little smoky. From what I could smell it had a light hop smell compared to what I expected for a wet hopped IPA made with fifty pounds of fresh hops.

The flavor was big and juicy; a full malt backbone supports a load of hops that bring a lot of citrus to the beer. The beer sports a higher gravity which adds some alcohol warming to this beer making it taste and a bit 'Imperial'. The mouthfeel is huge; it reminded me of biting into an orange.

Any grassiness that you would expect from the fresh hops is minimal or imagined but it does not take away from this beer, it's a great offering from East End Brewing, find it while you can, there is only 14 barrels of it out there.

Photo of rabsten
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a growler drawn on the afternoon of Saturday, September 30 2006, poured into an East End pint glass for review. I got the extra hops in the growler, which is a nice touch.

Pours a cloudy copper amber, nice head with good retention, fluffy lacing.

Very hoppy aroma, fruity and clean. Tasty to smell, better to drink. Crisp hop wallop up front with a clean malty finish.

Smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Drinkability is high but takes a bit of a ding because of the alcohol content (two a session, tops).

It's brews like this that make East End a must stop whenever I visit the 'burgh. Another good one, Scott. Cheers!

Photo of JamesS
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very nice fall/harvest beer. I could taste the autumn in the glass. Although I can't imagine anything taking black strap's place as my favorite East End brew, this is an excellent fall-session ale. It had a wonderful hoppy flavor with a crips finish and an excellent aroma with a nice helping of hops.

Photo of brentk56
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazy copper color with a modest head that leaves some lacing

Smell: Fresh hop, grassy aroma

Taste: Starts with a vaguely caramel, grassy, resinous flavor; after the swallow, the resinous hop flavors become intense, and linger well into the finish; if you squeeze the hop blossoms into the brew, it takes on an almost pesto-like character

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Interesting flavor profile that is difficult to describe; very different but enjoyable; make sure to extract the hop juice from the blossoms into the brew

Thanks, DrunkenPanther, for the opportunity

Photo of IronCitySteve
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at the East End/Harris Grill Beer Dinner.

A: Pours a brownish orange color with a small white foam head. There is decent amount of lacing.

S: Pine and citrus hops are they main scents but there is a nice amount of caramel and toast in there as well.

T: Starts off with a decent amount of caramel malt flavor. In the middle there is some citrus hops coming through but the caramel and toast are still predominant. On the back end the malt still lingers in the forefront while the hops dance in the back.

M: A medium bodied brew that leaves a slightly bitter taste on the palate.

O: I really enjoy the Big Hop but did not enjoy the big hop harvest as much, but it is still a quality brew. I would have expected more hop flavor to balance the malt.

Photo of Hojaminbag
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A golden orange body that has a touch of haziness to it, with about a finger of off-white head.

The aroma is great. A ton of fresh, grassy hops that have a great aroma with some citric hops mixed-in for good measure. A little bit of malt peaking through also.

I have to say, I think this is an improvement on the normal Big Hop. Up fron the fresh, green tasting hops are big and tasty, followed by some bitterness and grapefruit flavor. The bready malt is there, but it is muted.

The mouthfeel for this one is just off. The carbonation is too low, which makes the beer a bit heavy. They were having trouble with the kegs are the brewery when I went, so maybe that was the problem. The sample I tried was much better, so I will average the two scores.

This is a good one for sure; see you next year Big Hop Harvest.

Photo of Scrapss
4.16/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

.Growler pour from the East End Brewing's substation in the Strip. Now that I have a clean palate, let's review. Served in a 16oz. Turbinator style glass.

A: Wonderful orange/golden hue, with a bit of haziness. Head was poured from growler using a vigorous finishing pour and the head stuck around briefly. 1 mm disk hangs around the edge through entire glass. Beautiful beer.

S: Since fresh hops were stuffed in the neck of the growler, the smell of the fresh hops is strong on the initial quaff. Typical fresh hop smells push through, such as grassy, pine and lemon, as well as a very light astringent, not unpleasant like skunk pee but in the same smellagory/family. Malt is caramel like and not as pronounced as these fresh hops.

T: Fresh hops are forward. Very good flavors of lemony piney citrus. Light caramel malt midway through. Fairly dry finish.

M: Medium body and slightly creamy even after carbonation dies down. slightly hot finish due to ABV.

O: I would like to have more of this. A lot more. Great harvest style fresh hopped IPA.

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I have been wanting up try this beer for years, but it never worked out for me to be able to.

Looks good off the pour. Slightly clouded amber brown. Nose is nice. Fragrant oily hops. Unfortunately it faded a bit after initially cracking it. Flavor is more along the earthy wet-hopped character. Oily. Very slightly piney. Never gets obnoxious or loud. It's those NY state hops I suppose.

A nice drinker. Certainly prefer this to the standard Big Hop. But I am sure I'd prefer the wet-hopped version of any beer over the original version.

Photo of lsummers
4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I decided to grab this in growler form at Jean Bonnet in Bedford Pa. To start out, it looks fantastic, a golen orange amber and very hazy. I can't see through this one.

Smells great, it has very nice sweet citrus piney notes, with a touch of vanilla. Almost like it has been aged in oak. It's pleasant and not overwhelming.

Taste is fantastic, the sweetness hits first, then the piney vanilla turns into a fresh cut field of bitter hops. It ends with a very pleasant after taste that lingers on the tongue. The finish reminds me how wood aged Ipa's finish, lots of caramel, malts, vanilla and of course a touch of the hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is also very pleasant. Medium amount of carbonation that lets the sticky sweetness come through. I like the fact it has a touch of thickness to it since it is over 7%

Overall, I really enjoyed this harvest ipa. I would love to try the non harvest version without the fresh picked hops to compare. I think it's a try before buy for the ipa lover. While there's alot going on, I think most would enjoy this one even if they didn't love it.

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Big Hop Harvest Ale from East End Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.