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Otter Creek Imperial India Pale Ale - Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's

Not Rated.
Otter Creek Imperial India Pale AleOtter Creek Imperial India Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

136 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 136
Reviews: 120
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 15.54%
Wants: 7
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 05-06-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 136 | Reviews: 120 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheHoppiest
TheHoppiest

Ohio

3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into an oversized snifter.

Pours a hazy amber with a mild amount of sediment floating. Moderate ivory head quickly dissapates.

Has a sharp pine scent mildly tempered by malt. Some alcohol notes as well.

Strongly bitter, this one bites hard in the beginning. Quite astringent, its almost sour, like the pith of a lemon. Interestingly, it does not have a lingering bitterness that dries out the tongue.

Mouthfeel is sharp, and not too thick.

While I like a good hoppy beer, this one is almost too much for me. When I'm done with this bottle, I'll be done with this beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2010 01:02:02 | More by TheHoppiest
Photo of whoneeds8
whoneeds8

Texas

4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into duvel tulip golden orange with a thick froathy white head. Great retention and lacing all the way down. The scent has floral hop scents and a strong amount of sugars mixed in. The taste is very sweet up front that quickly becomes bitter from a strong hop bite. Done very nicely. The mouthfeel has a nice tingle on the tongue and no noticable alcohol burn especially for this high abv. That makes this a very drinkable IIPA for the price.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2010 00:59:25 | More by whoneeds8
Photo of Durge
Durge

Connecticut

4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A light amber color with a decent off-white head and very nice lacing. The aroma has full floral pine hop and some brown sugar malt. Quite nice. The flavor offers maple malt and more pine hops in a medium-plus bodied brew with modest carbonation. It's sort of butterscotchy with a slightly viscous feel. Pineapple and juniper with herbal nuances with some alcohol noted but not at all dominating. A pretty drinkable "big" beer, I'd say. Overall it's definitely a satisfying, quality brew. Nicely done and worth a try for sure.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2010 02:32:56 | More by Durge
Photo of chaz410
chaz410

North Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful contrast of amber and orange body with a full finger and a half length white head.
Smells of thick caramel, toasted malts, biscuit malt and a little wheat... all laced over by lemony and earthy pine notes from the apollo and bravo hops.
Taste like the smell but more intense on the hop notes. There's also the hint of cat urine (not as a bad thing, just the closest thing to Symcoe you can find) and some grapefruit on the finish.
A smooth and malty finish, I almost wish they didn't use the same amount of the malt variety, it's a great blend but I think if they reduced the specialty malts just a little, it would make the wonderful hops ring out more.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2010 03:23:22 | More by chaz410
Photo of chickencoop
chickencoop

California

4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Maybe it's just the over-abundance of DIPA's on the market, and I know this is an "imperial IPA", but this fell a little short in the style. I just couldn't get past the 11%, it was all over the taste and finish and barely covered up by a tinge of maltiness. Good beer, don't get me wrong, but not to my personal balance, but what am i to say.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2010 04:56:54 | More by chickencoop
Photo of pwsoldier
pwsoldier

Texas

3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a gorgeous cloudy amber with an impressive off-white head that shows great retention. Lacing is plentiful.

S - Citrus dominates, with some pine and a touch of alcohol lingering in the background. Maybe some pineapple as well. Sweet malt aromas are noticeable, but don't get in the way of the hop bouquet.

T - Bitter grapefruit up front leads into a semi-balanced finish as the malt backbone tries to make itself known, along with a hint of spicy wood. The hop bitterness is harsh without being overpowering. The hops leave a bitter citrus aftertaste.

M - Medium-bodied with plenty of carbonation. The alcohol has a bit of a warming effect.

D - A treat for hopheads and an enjoyable beer overall, but a bit too off-balance to drink on a regular basis.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2010 02:29:37 | More by pwsoldier
Photo of DavoleBomb
DavoleBomb

Ohio

4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a snifter. Big thanks to shaebs99 for this.

4.5 A: Semi-hazy dark orange/light amber color. Two fingers of thick creamy beige head with good retention and plenty of lacing.

4.5 S: Not the hoppiest of DIPAs, but this one smells great. Big orange citrus and herbal hoppiness. Malts are an equally pleasant and strong portion of the nose. Lots of caramel malts that mixes elegantly with the hops. Slight tinge of alcohol.

4.5 T: The first thing I noticed was a harsh everlasting bitterness in the aftertaste. I was truly surprised considering how many DIPAs I've been drinking lately. But, part way into the first glass, my tongue got used to it and it wasn't so bad. Weird, I assert, but I digress. Like the nose, this isn't the hoppiest of DIPAs. Also like the nose, the taste is wonderful, with malt and hop playing equivalent roles. Lots of orange hops with some grapefruit and pine in the background. Malts are again full of caramel malt taste, but otherwise very clean. Not super complex, but super tasty.

4.5 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation, very creamy, and very smooth (after the initial super bitter aftertaste thing).

5.0 D: This only gets better as you drink it. Great taste, great mouthfeel, no problems at all. Quite a brew, I do declare.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2010 02:19:29 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of Naugros
Naugros

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The pour of this beer is amazing. A rich, foamy head that settles down to a finger's width layer of dense suds. The first sip will dissipate most of this head and the bands of lace continue all the way down. The color is that of honey; it's a bit cloudier than I expected an IPA to be.

On the nose the hops attack immediately and joyfully! Grapefruit with a tinge of orange predominates (a collaboration of the Simcoe, Amarillo and Apollo hops). You can get some of the yeast, but very little of the 5 types of malt come through...perhaps a whiff of wheat used, but maybe that's just the grassiness of the Bravo hops that I'm getting.

The taste brings through what you smelled: grapefruit, orange and grass. The malts seem to be outfought by the hops, but their sweetness does come through on the tip of the tongue momentarily. The level of alcohol in this brew is very well masked, making this a bit dangerous.

This goes straight to the back of your throat...not my favorite place to experience the bulk of the flavor. The wash leaves an astringent feel as the acidity and hence bitterness of the hops assert themselves and this lingers as an strong aftertaste.

Imperial = strong, and that holds true here. At 11% abv, finishing the 22oz by myself would have rendered me incapable of typing many of the words in this review. I don't consider this beer "refreshing" due to the aftertaste or it's alcoholic content.

A good example of the Imperial style but many single and double IPAs are far preferable, if not less alcoholic. One glass was enough for me; time to move on to another beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2010 23:54:08 | More by Naugros
Photo of Overlord
Overlord

California

3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden yellow. An inch or so of off-white foam head. Sudsy, long lasting.

Smells like ... floral notes and a heaping dose of acrid pine. Whoa. Hoppy.

Taste is one-note, searing, and sledge-hammer esque. But maybe not in a particularly good way. No malt. Zero. Just blasting, scorched/acrid pine with maybe a hint of grapefruit rind. Hmm. Well, I do love me some hops, but this is palate wearying in its singlemindedness.

Not particularly drinkable, but pretty good. Nice juicy mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2010 17:57:43 | More by Overlord
Photo of ClockworkOrange
ClockworkOrange

Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A foil wrapped 22 ounce bomber bottle picked up at Abe's in Bethlehem for $5 and change. Uncapped and poured into my nonic piny glass. The ale appears a hazy, particle filled honey amber color with about an inch of fluffy, sticky off white foam. Nose and flavors consist of resinous pine, caramel malt, very bitter, a bit of lemon pith, white grapefruit, alcohol. Medium to full bodied with adequate carbonation. Aftertaste is quite bitter and the alcohol heat is not as overpowering as I thought it would be for a relatively fresh 11% DIPA. Not bad for the price.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2010 05:57:11 | More by ClockworkOrange
Photo of allergictomacros
allergictomacros

Ontario (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy amber with a monumental head. Big hoppy aromas quickly waft out. Nose is also substantially sweet from malt, with heaps of tropical fruit. Very intensely bitter - maybe even a bit too much. Big balancing sweetness and some grassy hops. Very syrupy mouthfeel weighs this down as well. Lots of flavour but a bit over the top.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2010 21:21:34 | More by allergictomacros
Photo of Seanibus
Seanibus

California

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours hazy orange with a huge. Dense tight head. Aroma is carmelly and hoppy with citrus and a whiff of pine. The flavor is citrusy with smooth caramel and a surprisingly smooth mild citrusy bitterness. The mouthfeel is quite creamy, rather milky in fact. Little evidence of the intense alcohol. Delicious and well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2010 23:44:06 | More by Seanibus
Photo of cdpike
cdpike

Michigan

3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into stemmed tulip glass.

With tons of lasting foam clinging to all sides of the glass, it pours a slightly hazy bright burnt orange. The aroma is very bright with lots of resiny hops and some earthiness in the background. For the big blast of hops in the nose, this full-bodied beer has a little more to it than that. There's lots of chewy caramel and a touch of toffee wrapped in resiny hop goodness. This is balanced fairly well, especially since expecting nothing but a hop explosion. Overall, it's enjoyable, but quite heavy-handed--on the the edge of clumsy. Tasty, but I would definitely split a bomber.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2010 16:07:53 | More by cdpike
Photo of DawnL
DawnL

New York

4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew was a deep golden color with a head that had great retention. Very nice to look at.

Hops on top of hops - piney, citrusy, fruity - really nicely layered - delicious stuff.

The palate was surprising. I was absolutely thinking 120 minute territory, but the malt was clean and really balanced the hops creating a very round beer. It was a pleasure to drink.

Highly drinkable - one of those dangerous brews where you forget the alcohol content due to the great balance of alcohol, malt and hops. The hops are still in your face, but there's less of a bitter bite on the backend. That's where those malts come out of nowhere and encourage you to drink more.

This is a great beer.

Serving type: on-tap

02-04-2010 15:25:49 | More by DawnL
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
brewdlyhooked13

Ohio

3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - slightly hazed bright caramel amber. Four fingers of sticky lace leave a thick net of webbing around the glass.

Aroma - caramel up front, plenty of spicy, piny hop aroma to go around. Smells intense with grapefruit rind setting up after a minute or two.

Taste - some early caramel/biscuit sweetness. An early presence of some fruity, mango/grapefruit flavor, but overrun at mid-palate by some very spicy, prickly, and somewhat medicinal hoppage. A pleasant abv warmth hits on the aftertaste that smooths things out a bit, but doesn't quite displace the harshness of the cones. A legit IIPA, but made for the uber-bitter fans.

Mouthfeel - crispy enough for the style, certainly smooth. The body is in range but could stand an even bigger footprint. The palate feels rather ravaged after a third of the bomber, like little hop knives have diced up my roof of my mouth.

Drinkability - wouldn't mind trying one after a few years to mellow the sharpness out, but not one I'd seek out fresh.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2010 04:56:10 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of jjboesen
jjboesen

Maryland

4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

During a recent trip to Vermont, I took the opportunity to purchase a bomber of this fine brew, an entry in Otter Creeks' new series of "Imperial" beers. The initial pour (into a tulip glass) results in a glass of froth that is slow to settle; after five minutes, one beholds in their hand, a glass containing an opaque amber colored liquid that is populated by a swirling school of carbonation bubbles. The lacing is heavy and consistent.

The nose detects sweet lemon drop notes while the palate is overwhelmed by a thick doughy blanket of hops that leaves an intense alcoholic aftertaste. Add to this, some assertive maltiness in the back. At 135 IBUs, this is your typical hopbomb that is brewed for a slow savoring.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2010 17:11:09 | More by jjboesen
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

2.7/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Golden-amber with a dense, frothy white head topping it. The head sustains nicely, leaving trails of lace clinging to the glass. Yeast in the bottle makes for a slightly hazy pour, but it's an attractive beer nonetheless.

Aromatically it's surprisingly mild for an 11% double IPA - Pliny the Younger this ain't. There's lemon peel and pine, noticeable but thankfully not cloying sweet malt, and plenty of alcohol. While there's nothing particularly unpleasant about this, it's in no way interesting.

The taste is thankfully bolder, but not exactly the hop explosion one would expect from a beer this strong. A simple hop profile of citrus and pine is dominant on the palate, and the 11% ABV is surprisingly subdued, but there's something missing; namely finesse. Malt is there, but doesn't lend much flavor beyond a touch of sweetness and a palate-wearying heaviness. While somewhat light in flavor, this beer begins to weigh on the palate after a while; too much alcohol, not enough hop flavor. The finish is aggressively bitter, but not dry enough to be refreshing, nor complex enough to be interesting. Alcohol burns going down, and becomes increasingly more noticeable on the palate as the beer warms. Not bad, but decidedly average. I wouldn't go out of my way to try this.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2010 06:33:13 | More by largadeer
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

3.05/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-pours a golden copper color with a light haze and some bubbles. the head is white, bubbly but slightly creamy looking. it has some retention, about half a minute and leaves a decent amount of lacing on the glass.

S-the smell is very faint and brings some pale malts, notes of alcohol, and some pine with citrus

T-the taste follows the nose...weak! lots of pale malts, some citrus and pine, showings of alcohol towards the end, and slightly bitter hops at the finish.

M-medium to light body, highly carbonated, crisp towards the finish, and slightly astringent.

D-quite pedestrian, tastes more like a solid pale ale than an imperial ipa. if you see it on the shelf, i personally would recommend not buying it.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2010 04:05:59 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of david18
david18

New York

3.05/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Wow, I can't believe i've already reviewed this beer twice and am equally surprised that I've had it in three "formats".

It was an ok beer. The only double ipa on draft at the bar at the time. Good color and ok smell. Flavor was a little strong tasting with decent balance but not great.

In general I think all versions are all good but there are many double ipas i like better.

Serving type: on-tap

01-15-2010 22:18:01 | More by david18
Photo of ericj551
ericj551

Alberta (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Otter Creak IIPA pours a hazy copper with a thick, creamy head that doesn't quit. The aroma is the standard overpowering citrusy, piney and earthy hops. Grapefruit and tangerine really jump out at me. The bitterness strikes upfront with a big punch, but some nice toasty sweetness pokes through. Enormous citrusy and herbal hops accent the bitterness, with a lingering resiny flavor that sticks in my mouth for quite a while. The flavor hides the alcohol completely until it warms a bit, making it go down fairly easy for the style. I don't know why I wasn't expecting much out of this beer, it is a great Imperial IPA.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2010 02:43:41 | More by ericj551
Photo of Spineypanda
Spineypanda

Texas

3.1/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Has an amber color and a large head with great lacing.
Smells of sweet malts and hops.
Tastes really bitter, not much malt flavor... in fact almost none. Straight bitterness adds the the effect that I am drinking a bitter wax almost. Not too horrible, as an Imperial IPA it has the qualities one looks for, but the consistency and taste just don't cut it.

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2010 04:28:17 | More by Spineypanda
Photo of NJpadreFan
NJpadreFan

New Jersey

4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Otter Creek- Imp. IPA

A- Golden orange/ brown with a thick frothy white head. Chunky ringed lacing and good head retention.
S- Thick sweet caramel malt with big doses of grapefruit and pine.
T- Thick sugary sweet caramel and biscuit malt with a good dose of semi-sweet grapefruit and pineapple. Nice oily resiny pine presence.
M- Thick and oily. Sticky resiny bitterness throughout with a good sugary citrus touch.

Overall- A big thick DIPA that that tastes good and will sneak up on you!

Serving type: on-tap

01-02-2010 14:37:34 | More by NJpadreFan
Photo of RonfromJersey
RonfromJersey

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy amber body, topped by three fingers of dentable off-white big-bubbly Froth. Very good lacing.

Huge bready/yeasty aroma, smells like an Imperial English Pale Ale.

Thick semi-sweet malt coats the tongue. Big hop bitterness arises, but not abrasive. Familar earthiness of simcoe and amarillo hops (the label says fruity and citrusy, characteristics I find more in the "C" family hops). Big flavors all around. There is some fruit, but it's not dominate here as it is im many IIPAs.

Good sturdy mouthfeel. Good drinkability, even with all the "bigness".

Not an IIPA I envision returning to on a regular basis, but definitely worth trying. Otter Creek has come a long away with beers like this and their "World Tour" series, from a brewery that I once thought had too many beers that were too similar to one another.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2009 05:47:20 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

West Virginia

4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is very nice lookin' brew, good we're back in the hay day of Dogfish Head, since their current brewer was trained down in Rehoboth doing pilot batches for Sam and company. Slightly hazed amber copper hue with a nice sized slightly off white head.

Aromatics have a strong citrus pine combo of hop and mild booze flowing together big sweetness almost a honey syrupy note among the uncompromising hop bouquet. When I mentioned citrus this one hits the grapefruit gear full speed ahead there's no playing around these are aggressive overkill hop additions.

Flavor has that grapefruit pith surrounding the malt profile some sugary caramel moments but in reality if I step back breathe and take another sip it's pure hop insanity. A bit unbalanced in fact. A mountain of malt and hops comes rolling down, with pure hop bitterness expliciency. Raw herbaceous, grapefruit, and other rough but satisfying over top hop flavorings. A bit of booziness amongst the malt sweetness and hop additions especially at 11% abv, this is kind of like barleywine but hoppier it definitely blurs the lines between the two.

Mouthfeel is slick with hops oils, hot with booziness, and slightly stick with caramel/biscuit malts. Fuller bodied evenly carbonated this is a bruiser of a fuckin' beer.

Drinkability, God help us this is a huge portion size please handle with care, and consume responsibly versus solo as a lover of all thing with hops. Damn good brew, surprising to see an imperial series out there from Otter Creek.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2009 05:39:31 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of guyforget
guyforget

Colorado

3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber in color with a creamy head that thins quickly. Thin head leaves a nice lacing down the glass.

Aroma is floral with heavy scents of citrus and hops.

Large dose of grapefruit up front on the palate that turns malty before the huge dose of hops kicks in with a bitterness that lingers long.

Its crisp enough to not feel like an 11% ABV brew on your palate.

Overall, very drinkable but also pretty standard for a Double IPA.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2009 03:14:48 | More by guyforget
Otter Creek Imperial India Pale Ale from Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
87 out of 100 based on 136 ratings.