1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Masala Mama India Pale Ale - Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery

Masala Mama India Pale Ale
No picture uploaded.
Have one? Upload it now.

1,082 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1082
Reviews: 654
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 9.17%

Brewed by:
Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
American style India Pale Ale (IPA) brewed using Amarillo, Cascade, Centennial and Mt. Hood hops. A beer with crisp hop flavor and bitterness well balanced with American malt sweetness.

(Beer added by: Jason on 01-01-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 1,082 | Reviews: 654 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of marksto


3.95/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sought out and sampled at GABF due to the very high ratings here. I enjoyed it, but did find a few better IPA's there.

Pours medium amber, clear, with a thin white head that displays good retention. Aroma shows big fruit and hop on the nose, both mingle nicely; and also has some apple and citrus in the hops. Fairly full bodied, with a pleasing citrusy essence and malt and fruit intermingling with some light pine elements. The dimension and complexity of this one are certainly very good, but I was not as impressed as it looks like some other BA's have been. Definitely worth sampling if you get the opportunity to try it.

Serving type: on-tap

10-19-2007 14:23:29 | More by marksto
Photo of jackorain


4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finnaly got to the brewery. Had the draught after the cask. See my cask review in the previous review.

A-Clear amber. Long lasting head that eventually (7 minutes) fell to a thin coat and tall collar. Showed decent lace.

S-Beautiful hop aromas, grapefruit, complex array of other citrus fruit, bready, biscuit and caramel malts. Nearly the same nost as the cask but not as potent.

T-Again, this close to the cask but not quite as good. Citrus fruits abound, grapefruit and grapefruit pith dominate the hop profile. A bit hoppier than the cask versionThere ia an alcohol zing the belies the fairly low ABV. The malts come out and grow more complex as it warms and consists of all those found in the nose. Never comes up as balanced though.

M-medium body, nice even carbonation, not as creamy as the cask.

D-Very good, lower ABV and fantastic flavor makes this one and all nighter. Supremely hoppy and unbalnced but I knew this going in and appreciated it. Sorry about all the comparisons to the cask, but I thought it appropriate given I drank them back to back and liked the cask a touch better.

Serving type: on-tap

09-25-2007 16:59:51 | More by jackorain
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Arrives at the bar with a hazy amber color and a sturdy head that retains and laces well

Smell: Tangerine citrus and some pith

Taste: No malt appetizer here as we go straight to the grapefruit and pith flavors from start to finish; some underlying hints of caramel try to sneak in from time to time and they are finally able to take a bow at the finish, but this is all about bitter citrus

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A refreshing beer with great bitter character and just enough caramel flavor to keep it honest

Serving type: on-tap

09-06-2007 03:12:51 | More by brentk56
Photo of Bamabrew22


4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Finally got to try the Masala Mama on tap, at the source. Glad to say that this beer does not disappoint.

A: Poured clean out of the tap with a 2-finger, feathery head. Deep coppery, amber color with mild effervescence. Just inviting to look at.

S: Hops, hops and then more hops! Incredibly enticing smell.

T: For a hophead's delight, this beer was surprisingly balanced. Loads of hops up front, but the slight caramel flavor of the malt played a nice point-counterpoint. Well done!

M: Fully coated the palate and left me wishing for more.

Overall, this is just a fantastic beer. A pleasure to drink and savor every mouthful. The brewpub wasn't half bad either. I suggest the Black and Blue Burger (Black Angus, Blue cheese); accompanied the brew quiet well. The entire trip to MN was worth it for this beer!

Serving type: on-tap

07-30-2007 13:30:08 | More by Bamabrew22
Photo of Atron67


4.68/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- this didnt have the cascading creamy look that the cask ale did, however it was still a heavy foamed, golden amber clear bodied ale with tan head that lasted a long time and left lots of lacing
S- This had a much sharper hop scent than the cask conditioned, however it was just as good, and enjoyable, although the malt is harder to notice under the sharper hops
T- very good, theres the great hop flavor providing a much stronger and crisper flavore, slightly piney. it is harder to notice the malts than in the cask however they are still there and quite delicious
M- this has a much lighter body and a sharper carbonation, but right where you epect and want for an IPA
D- This is a great IPA, however I might like the cask more, but they are both delicious

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2007 22:52:40 | More by Atron67
Photo of rborthwick


3.6/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The appearance was a nice amber with the proper head and plenty of lace. Pleasant aroma and good initial taste balance. To me, the taste of the finishing hops was a bit too aggressive. I noticed a hint of grapefruit in the finish. The beer was good but doesn't quite have the drinkability of some tamer American IPAs like Dogfishhead 60 min.

Serving type: on-tap

06-26-2007 02:07:29 | More by rborthwick
Photo of barefootbrewer


4.05/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - This beer was on draft and I didn't get to see the pour, but it arrived a cloudy golden color with a nice persistent head.

S - The aroma of this beer is hoppy! It smells like a bag of fresh hops - outstanding aroma.

T - Bitter. Hoppy and bitter. Hops is about the only word to describe it....other than intense.

M - Medium to full bodied and slightly creamy.

D - This beer is a bit one dimensional. It is very flavorful and intense, but perhaps a little too much to be considered an easy to drink brew.

Note: I had this again last night from a growler. It is a very impressive brew. It is intense, but perhaps not as one dimensional as I had originally thought. It is still a delightful challenge to drink.

Serving type: on-tap

06-18-2007 20:12:36 | More by barefootbrewer
Photo of

4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Town Hall

I had this about half a year ago and thought it was fantastic. Half way through the first glass out of the growler, I was already wondering when I would get to have it again. Today is the day!

Orange/gold fluid, with just a touch of haze. Large, creamy, ivory colored head.

Hops are first impression. Big citrus and pine. Grapefruit & oranges. Next up is a crackery malt backbone.

Taste more than lives up to the nose. Big hops - citrus of all varieties - grapefruit, lemon and oranges. Sweetness follows, peach and fruits on a biscuity middle. Finish brings you back to a nice lingering hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is just about perfect. Medium body, with medium + carbonation. Dry enough to keep you coming back for more.

Overall, an exceptional IPA. I have drank quite a few of them, and this one remains my personal favorite.

Serving type: on-tap

05-29-2007 17:26:53 | More by
Photo of tempest


4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I don't know about #9 on BA, but then again, I don't seem to think anything deserves to be in the top 10. I guess I'm just stingy. Still, this is an IPA for the ages. If someone needed one example of the great American IPA, Masala Mama could be it. To me it has a deep, rich grapefruit hops flavor complimented by floral hops. There's enough bitterness to catch up with any good hop head. It's a shame this isn't bottled

Serving type: on-tap

05-26-2007 07:37:30 | More by tempest
Photo of aaronh


3.88/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Typical IPA appearance with orangeish body topped by a creamy head, but with a bit more sparkle than you typically see. The characteristic haziness form the hops is absent. This beer screams " I'm Special! " Aroma has a nice bit of what seems like Centennial hops, along with some other hop notes. No malt sweetness to speak of. Flavor is very bitter up front, with almost a dry, dusty feel. Very little malt backbone is present to support the onslaught of hops. Finish is also very dry. Mouthfeel is a bit astringent, and also gets a bit drying. This hurts drinkability as well. Over all a solid offering, but not in the upper echelon of IPAs for me personally.

Serving type: on-tap

04-03-2007 04:05:22 | More by aaronh
Photo of kenito799

New York

3.1/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the Town Hall BrewPub, Minneapolis.

Since my family lives in the Twin Cities now and this beer sits so highly near the pinnacle of the BA top 100, of course we stopped to check it out on the way from the airport. This scenario is a set-up for a let-down, as happens whenever hype precedes an experience...what's more, American IPA is not my favorite type of beer. However, I made my best attempt to set preconceived notions aside and evaluate this beer objectively.

Appearance was average for an amber tap beer, nice lacing, not too much head. I appreciate and enjoy the floral aromatics that massive hopping provides to our national hophead style; piney, grapefruity, nice to inhale deeply.

The hop flavors come through in the drinking, walloping one's (hop-)head with overtly strenuous bitterness, endlessly lingering and puckering the tongue. Nice with food. I have admitted that the style isn't my favorite, nevertheless, I think American IPAs succeed more when the hop slam is balanced by careful attenuation with mellowing malt flavors. Anyone can dump hops into a brew at all steps of its creation...it takes skill to harness their intensity. I don't think that was really done here. For me a more successful attempt is found over at Smuttynose in New Hampshire with their Finest Kind IPA. If you are looking for a full-on hop bodyslam, though, you'll find it here.

Serving type: on-tap

12-24-2006 16:40:42 | More by kenito799
Photo of mwagner1018


4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have to say I was excited to try this beer, my initial reason for visiting the Town Hall Brewery. I was not disappointed with a great take on the American IPA.

I would rank this up there with just about any American IPA, strong/bitter extra hoppiness, with a very distinct bite. I loved the taste, but was slightly dissapointed with the carbonation release and smell.

The best part of this beer was the incredible lacing through the entire pint, and long lasting thin head.

I was surely not disappointed and could drink this one all night, or at least finish an entire growler!

Serving type: on-tap

11-25-2006 01:31:12 | More by mwagner1018
Photo of joedon


4.7/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer really is as good as I had hoped. Perfect coppery-gold color with a long lasting white head and lace.
Aroma was more malty than hoppy but still good.
Taste was exactly what I would want for an American IPA. Perfect balance of hop bitterness, flavor and malt. Very slightly sweet to offset the big load of hops.
Body was also spot on. Chewy mouthfeel that sticks to the roof of your mouth. Long lasting spicy-hop aftertaste.
Very drinkable; like all evening if you wanted more.

Too bad they don't bottle this beer and ship it outside Minneapolis.

Serving type: on-tap

10-24-2006 23:17:12 | More by joedon
Photo of Redrover


4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The first beer I ordered during my recent visit to Town Hall.

Served in a pint glass, the beer is mahogany with bronze highlights. Nice thick head with ok lacing.

The aroma is an inviting mix of citrus and pine.

The taste is bitter in the most pleasant way. This Momma has a nice oily quality that coats your mouth. In spite of the heavy hopping, the brewer has done a fine job of moderating the beer with a bucket load of malts. This adds an almost molasses based sweetness.

The mouth was fine, but I really expected a bit more heft given the thick qualities of the taste. I can see why this is a very popular beer. It is well made, tasty and worth searching out.

Serving type: on-tap

09-26-2006 20:33:10 | More by Redrover
Photo of shivtim


3.3/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I was pretty excited about trying this beer. It's a beautiful rusty brown copper, with a nice foamy off-white head, and exceptional lacing. Looks delicious. The nose is just hops, nothing too crazy here. Taste starts out pleasantly with piney hops and some balancing malts, but it's followed by a way over the top syrupy hop finish. This one-note hop taste sticks around in your mouth for a good 45 seconds. Nothing complex to the ending, just hop hop hop.
Mouthfeel is good, but drinkability suffers because of the extreme lingering aftertaste. Overall it's not bad, but I wish the ending on the taste wasn't such a simple hop overload.

Serving type: on-tap

08-14-2006 00:47:42 | More by shivtim
Photo of NJpadreFan

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Masala Mama- IPA

On tap at Town Hall Brewery- Minnepolis.

Appearance- dark copper/ hazelnut brown with a thick tan head. Laced down the glass.
Smell- Malt, light pine hops, and fruit.
Taste- immediate malt balanced with fruit, peach/ orange. followed by a light piney/ earthy hop.
Mouthfeel- big chewy flavor. Easy to drink.

Overall- Not as hoppy or bitter/ dry as I like my IPA's but a solid 1. If spotted I'll pick up a 6er.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2006 13:59:59 | More by NJpadreFan
Photo of ryantupy


4.6/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I tasted and reviewed this beer with out knowing what beer it was. I was told after the review it was Masala Mamma.

This one is kinda of a must for anyone visiting the Town Hall Brewery as it seems to get the most praise. I found it to be a very well balanced beer with some great character. It pours a nice forthy head that is good and rocky and sticks to the glass the whole way down. It a nice orange/reddish color. Smells of really oily hops, flowers, light spice, and even a little nutty maybe. It tastes great in my opinion with some great hoppy bitterness to it. I found this beer to be great I really like IPA's and this one really stood apart from the others.

Serving type: on-tap

06-28-2006 07:13:03 | More by ryantupy
Photo of hylton44


4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This, the first imbibation of my long-awaited trip to the West Bank's Town Hall Brewery, did not disappoint. The only unfortunate circumstance surrounding this drink is that we had settled for getting served on the outdoor patio area, and my Mama was served in a plastic Texas tumbler.

Nevertheless, a pungent aroma of lush, tropical grasses and ripe grapefruit met my nose; and a deep, brownish amber color met my eyes when this beer was first served to me. Served at the perfect temperature, I fortunately did not have to wait for my first draught. The taste was bitter, rich, and satisfying. Piney, flowery, hints of caramel malts. The mouthfeel was almost creamy, but not in a way that detracted from the bitter zest in any way. I thought this drink was remarkable not only in my initial impression, but also in how the character of the taste did not diminish all the way through the "bitter end," so to speak.

Serving type: on-tap

06-12-2006 20:13:20 | More by hylton44
Photo of Prufrock


4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on tap into a pint glass.

orangeish light amber with an off-white layer of head that leaves nice rings of lace.

powerfully hoppy aroma, but with a nice mixture of floral, citrus rinds, and hints of pine. a touch of bitter grapefruit. full, rounded and powerful.

barest hints of caramel malt backing washed away with an incredible mix of hop flavors. less citrus than the nose indicates, but a nice mix of floral and resiny pine. tons of bitter and hoppiness, but it comes off as very well balanced and very drinkable. slick, oily feel with a bitter but rounded finish.

Serving type: on-tap

05-30-2006 18:27:00 | More by Prufrock
Photo of TeamSeinfeld


4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Town Hall Brewery is a great bar at seven corners in Minnneapolis, Masala Mama IPA is just one of the few great beers they have available. With that said, this IPA is very good, the hopyness is not overpowering, yet the flavor is magnificant. The beer is definatley worth a try.

Serving type: on-tap

02-24-2006 21:39:30 | More by TeamSeinfeld
Photo of ndolover


5/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

-Beer came in pint glass, with nice fluffy head that clings to the side.
-The goldenrod hue complemented the wonderful aroma of fresh geen hops.
-The first sip hit me like a punch to the nose, however it did not have an overly geen hop taste as the aroma might indicate. The following swallows were not as intense as I progressed through the beer. Generally a very hoppy beer, but not overdone.
-The mouthfeel was not thick, it rolled over the tongue wonderfully and allowed me to take in the full hop aroma.
-The drinkablity is second to none. As I can attest 5 to 7 beers in a sitting is definately possible.
Overall, a wonderful example of an IPA

Serving type: on-tap

02-11-2006 02:47:10 | More by ndolover
Photo of BrewMaster


3.78/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark golden to copper color with a dense tan head. Light carbonation billows from the bottom. Slightly cloudy with slippery lacing sliding down the glass.

Smell: Earthy and vegetable scents from the hops. Some piney and faint floral notes backed by a bit of malty sweetness.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The hop flavor dominates the beer. Sweet malty base that shines only briefly before being overpowered by a very earthy, bark-like hop flavor. The hop flavor is gritty and even sandy in a raw sense. Very green and vegetal. The flavor tastes fresh and oily but a bit out of balance.

Drinkability: This beer is readily drinkable and pairs well with the appetizers at Town Hall, particularly the wings. Tasty and fresh.

Serving type: on-tap

01-28-2006 04:13:18 | More by BrewMaster
Photo of CultureJamMN


4.03/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Let me begin by saying, I am not a hop-head. I generally find IPA's passable, and then only in summertime. That said, I couldnt stand this beer at all. And that's exactly why it's so good.

My review is based on what I know IPA to be, and while I may not like them, I know a good one when I drink one, and this is a VERY good one.

The color on this beer is sort of like a peach skin, darker than many IPA's. Nice head, retained well, and the lacing was fantastic.

The hops come screaming out in the nose, but there is a fruityness here, citrusy, but also of maybe peaches.

The taste is hoppy, very hoppy... with the citrus and peach coming on strong. There is a piney/juniper thing happening here too. There is some malt in the finish which is pleasing for this non-hophead.

As for mouthfeel, it was on the light side, but not thin. This would make a great summer beer for hopheads... seriously, if you love hops, and IPA's, find a way to drink this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

01-25-2006 21:48:17 | More by CultureJamMN
Photo of blitheringidiot


4.22/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewpub.

Pint glass pour with a dim clear orange topped with craggy 1/2" khaki head cap that leaves plenty of startus layers of lace in the glass.

The best aspect of this brew is the huge aromatice hop blast and floral bouquet in the nose. So good that I want to jump in. Citrus orange and bright. I could smell this all day long and into night.

First swigs: Piny juicy floral with a touch of Earthy balance from the malt. (Reminds me a lot of 90 minute) Finishes with a tart lemon

This is a thick feel with a full bodied IPA that really puts it into a 2IPA category but I ain't here to debate.

Last swigs: Mature dark grainy hoppy balance. I seriously was shaking before I ordered this. It was the last beer of three for the night. I hoped to save the best for last) Excellent!

Beer is good. Happy hoppy beering.

Serving type: on-tap

01-05-2006 04:17:36 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of woodychandler


4.2/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This arrived with a big, fluffy, white head with a lot of bubbles coming to the top. I continued to note a beautifully floral hoppy nose. The mouthfeel was thicker and more effervescent on the palate. The hops were still up front and in your face, but tempered a little bit by the carbonation. The finish had that nice burst of malt that stood in utter juxtaposition to the combination sledgehammer/blind file of hops that slugs you, pulls your tongue out of your head with a pair of pliers, and begins running back and forth like a cheese grater. Waitress, another please.

Serving type: on-tap

12-21-2005 11:06:21 | More by woodychandler
Masala Mama India Pale Ale from Minneapolis Town Hall Brewery
97 out of 100 based on 1,082 ratings.