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Nickel Brook Headstock IPA - Better Bitters Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Nickel Brook Headstock IPANickel Brook Headstock IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

73 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 73
Hads: 211
Avg: 3.81
pDev: 17.85%
Wants: 6
Gots: 30 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Better Bitters Brewing Co. visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sammy on 08-05-2011

A boldly hopped, full bodied American style IPA. Headstock IPA is brewed primarily with nugget hops, which gives rise to a distinct hop flavor, bitterness and aroma. It also uses blend of classic European and North American malts to enhance the body and full flavour. No additives. No Preservatives. Naturally carbonated for a smooth, crisp finish.

80 IBU
View: Beers (38) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 73 | Hads: 211
Reviews by peensteen:
Photo of peensteen
3.58/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep amber/copper colour, almost 2 fingers tan/off white head, some lace. Pine and citrus upfront on the nose, lightly biscuity malt profile, grapefruit and tangerine there as well, light alcohol notes come and go. Taste is of floral hops and lightly sweet, big maltyness comes through, nice bitterness throughout, pine with some citrus in the aftertaste, buttery at points. Lightly oily, medium carbonation, light to medium weight. Not bad altogether but could use some work to be top notch, still pretty enjoyable though.

 523 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of DenisKolkin
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

473 ml can from LCBO for $2.75 CDN into a pint glass

Appearance - Golden-ish, dark orange color. 1.5 fingers if head leave a creamy white cap that is slow to disappear, Tons of sediment is readily visible in the glass which may detract from the appeal for some.

Smell – Hops! Piney scents as well as some earthy flavors.

Taste- Quite hoppy with the earthy elements and a piney citrus fueled aftertaste. Maybe a touch of lime thrown in.

Mouthfeel- Balanced as the hops are quite strong enjoyable for someone who likes this but not so overbearing that complete balance is broken. Nice creaminess as well that may be unexpected.

Overall – Quite a delicious beer, one that the hopheads will like, plus it has good ABV and other than the appearance has a refined plate that is creamy and decadent. A favorite in the IPA class.

EDIT(s) - Just had this beer again and was the same as before except for the fact that it was crystal clear and had no chunks of sediment floating around. Much improved appearance in my mind has meant a bit of an adjustment in scoring. Lately, I find myself enjoying this beer frequently, as I compare my top three IPA's I drink on a volume basis, which are Central City's Red racer, Nickel Brook's Headstock and Boneshaker by Amsterdam. I think I was selling Headstock short given that I buy a lot more of it than Boneshaker (although not as much as Red Racer) and yet it's scored lower. The 10 cent difference in price isn't making the difference. SO I've upgraded this beer to 4's across the board, because quite honesty I feel that's where it deserves to be. Maybe it's better consistency and excellent freshness that has brought me around, but Headstock is a winner for the Ontario craft beer scene.

 1,739 characters

Photo of cam477
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of beerhunter13
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of FadetoBock
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of R_Kole
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of H8B8
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%

Photo of talbotjf99
4.41/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from a can picked up at the Lower Jarvis LCBO. Digging the Woodstock poster motif for some reason. For some reason I always associate American IPAs with the colour orange, so the colour just felt right.

Poured into a nonic. Deep amber ruby, slight haze, about an inch of head that levelled off into a fine ring.

Nose is light, but all IPA. Citrus, caramel, peach, a bit of lemon, pale malt.

Decent IPA, with notes of pine, earth, citrus and caramel. Tasty, drinkable ale, though a little bit sweet for my personal preferences. Still, enjoyable.

Mild carbonation, medium bodied, slight oil.

Another enjoyable IPA from Ontario, and part of a string of good brews from Nickel Brook. Worth a try if you see it on Ontario shelves - nice IPA in a can for the summer.

 774 characters

Photo of andrewdanks
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of virinow
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of Tilly
4.21/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Wrote! Just when I was about to give up on Ontario craft breweries Nickel Brock hits it out of the park!
Pores a clear gold with a frothy white head that dissipates quickly.
Heavenly aromas of skunky pine, grapefruit, lemon and huge hops.
Taste does not disappoint.
Good dry mouth feel with a disappointing lack of bitterness but still a nice finish.
Great job!

 361 characters

Photo of djcreepshow
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

473ml can, nice spacey Woodstock-esque imagery on the label - I especially like the bugged-out appearing bird.

This beer pours a hazy, muddled dark bronzed amber colour (pale ale, my tuckus), with three fingers of roiling, foamy, raw cake-like eggshell white head, which leaves some nice chunky, broken cage lace around the glass as it slowly ebbs southward.

It smells of bitter citrus cream and pine oil, blended seamlessly with a weighty caramel toffee sweetness. The taste is more tart, bitter grapefruit rind, some softer tropical citrus fruit, not so soft pine resin, and a sturdy caramel pudding malt backbone, quite capable of weathering, and somewhat withering, the hop onslaught. Booze warming? Not so much.

The bubbles punch in, punch out, and put in their work day, with no complaints, the body a bit on the light side, which seems to work, and further feeds a snappy, good enough for now smoothness. It finishes leaning towards a grudging detente, the hops wilting just a tad, and malt digging in.

Well, I'll be, another well-rounded, big flavoured IPA from Ontario, and in a can, no less. Nice and hoppy, in a big-boy way, with a countering malt that states firmly: you're still in Canada, son. This is going camping with me this summer.

 1,254 characters

Photo of mintjellie
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy appearance, burnt orange in colour. Moderately retentive beige head creates a patchy lace in the glass. White grapefruit, pine, and cedarwood aromatics. The flavour packs juicy grapefruit with leafy and herbal overtones underscored by toasted grain before you hit the lingering bitter finish. A minor fault I find with it is that it seems a little too sweet.

Medium bodied with low carbonation, mouthfeel is smooth and only slightly oily/resinous. Overall, I think this is a pretty solid hop fix that would reach the next level if it were more attenuated.

 561 characters

Photo of dfuls
4.39/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Sammy
3.13/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at Bar Volo, IPA day. Neutral aroa, malting A lacey beer with a reddish tinged body. Above average carboantion and lighter than average outhfeel. Some bitternes, not all that tasty, the bitter flavour more in the finish and chalky on first sips, as filler.So-so drinkability.

 290 characters

Photo of CanuckRover
3.49/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours really dark, orange but with a serious reddish tint. Big beige head and nice sticky lacings to the finish.

Really don't get too much on the nose. Vaguely fruity but... not as aromatic as I'd like.

Hops are bright citrus right up front, but don't blink or you'll miss them. Pine bitterness hangs around, but the flavour profile switches to darker malts, burnt caramel.

A malt-heavy offering, firmly in the Canadian IPA category.

 439 characters

Photo of traumaqueen
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of bhenry55
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of beerluvr
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Poured a cloudy darkish orange into a Duvel tulip, substantial eggshell-colored head leaves a nice collar as it slowly settles.
S: Bracing nose of fresh Nugget hops and firm maltiness as an afterthought...but that nose is all about those hops!
T: Sweet candy-fruity yeasty maltiness then POW!...hops all up in your face, flowery and quite bitter, very well balanced but in the end the hop takes precedent.
M: Firm malt base, sweet yet non-cloying makes for great mouthfeel before the hoppiness takes the stage.
O: Fantastic take on an American-style aggressively hopped IPA. One of my faves up here in Ottawa and a great bargain at $2.85 (Canadian) for a tall boy can. Great find for this hop head...gotta keep my eyes open for some other offerings by this outfit. Recommended without hesitation.

 799 characters

Photo of Dna_Infinity
3.89/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Can to Glass

Appearance - Poured a hazy orange with a nice two finger white head

Smell - Lots of tropical fruits, grapefruit, mango, pineapple, orange. Great smelling

Taste - Tropical fruits come through, a lot more bitterness then I expected

Overall - A well made hoppy IPA

 279 characters

Photo of grahuba
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of billmuckalt
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

from notes
A - Hazy bubbly burnt orange, tall tan head, solid retention
S - Pine, citrus, pepper, bready
T - Pine and citrus hops, then grain and caramel, peppery finish
M - Full feel medium carbo, finishes slightly bitter
O - not outstanding but for a random purchase this turns out to be a worthy enough treat

 311 characters

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Nickel Brook Headstock IPA from Better Bitters Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 73 ratings.