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Captain's Reserve Imperial IPA - Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Captain's Reserve Imperial IPACaptain's Reserve Imperial IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

972 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 972
Reviews: 505
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 10.84%
Wants: 171
Gots: 81 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co. visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: John on 02-13-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 972 | Reviews: 505 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of psuKinger


4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1 pint 0.9 oz bottle, acquired through trade with jchow79, poured into a standard curved-shaker pint glass. Many thanks for the opportunity to try this beer! The bottle says that this DIPA is a blend of 5 different hop varieties, and claims to be "the ultimate hop lovers dream come true", and jchow tells me that he thinks this one will be a treat for me. I'd never heard of/about this beer until he told me about it, so as a hop-head, I'm excited.

A: Pours a surprisingly light but hazy shade of orange with a large and very white 2" head. In fact, this may be closer to yellow than it is orange. Interesting. I'm not sure I've ever seen a DIPA pour this light of a shade before... not sure how I feel about that, just an observation, I suppose. As I work my way through this guy he's leaving great lacing all over my glass.

S: Big smell of hops. I'm picking up citrus and grapefruit, and a good bit of it.

T: Taste follows the smell. Big hop flavors of grapefruit, some citrus, maybe just a little mango, and a pine-bitterness on the finish. The malts do not get in the way here, this is pure hops. Up front, grapefruit hops. In the middle, more grapefruit, but it warms and brings through some other oily-fruit hops, and the finish is all pine-bitterness. All hop, all the time. I'm diggin' this.

M: Surprisingly light and smooth in the mouth, which lends itself to great drinkability. Carbonation seems a tad low, but certainly not distracting. And, of course, a thorough hop oiliness that coats my tongue and throat on the finish.

D: High. This guy is a quality DIPA, and I'm a hophead. I'd gladly wrap this guy up and have a second back-to-back. Sign me up.

Many thanks to jchow for sending me this guy. This is a solid DIPA which I will be "advocating" to my fellow PA BA's to seek out.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2010 01:10:42 | More by psuKinger
Photo of barleywinefiend


3.33/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Poured a deep yellow color with good carbonation, nice white head, leaving plenty of bubbles

S: Caramel, bread, pine and passion fruits

T: Sordove blah. Tropical fruits, hints at pine on end, caramel, bready

M: Lighter to medium body, light booze sting

D: Average

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2010 04:29:39 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of bminor7

New York

4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

from westmere

a - nice foamy head. great clarity. no sediment
s - super fresh hops, great thick malt presence
t - wonderful delicious full flavor. hops not too bitter and overwhelming.
m - also outstanding
d - just want more! great that it is not so hard to find.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2010 03:35:04 | More by bminor7
Photo of vfgccp

New York

4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A - Pale gold. Nice head that sits low but has decent retention with some nice lacing.

S - Super floral, grapefruit, orange, touch of alcohol

T - Grapefruit sweetness and grapefruit bitters. Woody hops. Bitters grab the back of your palate and hang on through the aftertaste.

M - Smooooth. Low carbonation.

D - The alcohol plays nice, and if you can take the bitters you'll enjoy having a few.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2010 02:07:45 | More by vfgccp
Photo of jlandis


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

Slightly hazy copper orange with a huge fluffy white head.

Classic DIPA grapefruit, citrus and sweet malt.

Bitter grapefruit with some pine, with and interesting funky almost tart aftertaste. Hints of pepper with clearly present alcohol.

Creamy body with just enough carbonation.

Pretty solid DIPA and I'm glad I was able to pick this up when I was in New York. Nothing that would make me drive back up there to pick this up again, but if they start distributing to PA I would be sure to pick it up from time to time.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2010 20:26:30 | More by jlandis
Photo of SkunkWorks

New York

4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A pint and .9 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Look: its a hazy, light gold color. Its a little on the light side for a DIPA. The head is white and with a careful pour I get one finger of head that is retaining forever. It still hasn't died down at all. Carbonation bubbles are floating to the top like crazy. As I work my way to the bottle of the glass, it leaves insanely huge sheets of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell: a little grassy hop, a little citrus hop. There's some doughy malt in there too. The aroma is a little on the weak side. I usually like my DIPAs to be potent in the nose and this lets me down. Hopefully the taste doesn't follow suit.

Taste: ... and luckily, it doesn't. There's some caramel and biscuit maltiness but there's a good deal of Northwest hops in the flavor. Its fruity, citrusy, grassy, and a touch of pine. Its not intensely bold as some DIPAs but its still pretty good.

Feel: not intensely bitter, fairly crisp and refreshing, the alcohol is hidden very well. Medium bodied and smooth.

Drink: for a DIPA, very high. Drinks like an American Pale Ale with 5% alcohol by volume, not a 9% DIPA.

Overall, another good effort by Captain Lawrence. Its not exceptional but its very solid. I would certainly seek this one out. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2010 22:45:34 | More by SkunkWorks
Photo of dbexpert


4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A. Light golden in color, on aggressive pour head builds to two fingers, retains a solid 1/2" white head. A good looking brew. excited to taste it.
S.Honey, light toast on the nose smells tasty, hops are subtle but play well with malt aromas.
T.Enough malt body to be imperial but not to sweet, hops offer a balance bitterness with a streak of bitter orange, I really like this beer.
M.Drinks too easy for 9%, not complaining. The alcohol is noticeable but just slightly in the finish. serving temp is approx. 45 degrees

Highly recommend this brew. Well made and worth seeking.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2010 22:34:51 | More by dbexpert
Photo of SuperNova777


4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Notes from 10/28/10

Thanx to vdoz3 for throwing this in as a extra

A:Pours a hazy and cloudy orange with a fingers worth of eggshell white head, excellent
lacing is left down the glass.

S:Smells of nice citrus, mango, & pineapple hop aroma. Very delicious smelling and just
what(particular me) are looking for, some sweet malts also come thru in the nose.

T:Subtle bite of hops up front followed by a small amount of malts in the middle.
The backend is dominated by juicy hops that linger on long after the sip is finished.

M:Excellent body for the style with ample carbonation. Palate has a nice tingle from the hops and also a slight warmness is left hanging around as well

D:Been hearing good things about the Lawrence and they are true. This one in particular was very refreshing and full of flavor. Easy to drink and a hops lover dream with all the flavors exploding in the mouth. Hop heads if you have not all ready try this one out.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2010 19:06:52 | More by SuperNova777
Photo of yeahnatenelson


3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Cuzco for the extra. Cheers from one Nate to another!

Appearance -- Pours a bright apricot hue, high clarity, with two fingers of stiff beige head. Not bad.

Smell -- Grapefruit, apricot, orange marmalade, pine resin, bready pale malts, dash of crystal malt. Overall: fruity, slightly sweet, moderate hop bittering.

Taste -- Lots of fruit-like hop notes: grapefruit pith, apricot preserves, orange marmalade. Cut grass and pine resin round out the hop profile. Malt sweetness is moderate; while not dry by any means, the honey sweetness is in proportion. Overall, hop bitterness is pretty mellow. Finish is all grapefruit, interestingly.

Mouthfeel -- Medium in body, a bit slick, with milder carbonation. Gentle, satisfying, goes down smooth.

Drinkability -- Not bad at all. Glad to have had the experience, but if it was near me I don't know if I'd go out of my way to seek out more.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 01:21:44 | More by yeahnatenelson
Photo of OakedCanuck


4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cool shaped bottle. I like how the label is see through. Poured into MS cervoise.

A - Straw yellow with some orange hues. Very fluffy white head and excellent lacing.

S - Sweet malt, grapefruit, orange peel and pineapple.

T - Very floral and piney, muted tropical fruits, noticeable caramel and toffee sweetness.

M - Medium body with some chewiness, somewhat dry and higher carbonation level.

D - Noticeable alcohol but quite drinkable. I thought this beer was fairly well balanced and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2010 17:37:16 | More by OakedCanuck
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


3.26/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Really yellow, but such a pillowy head that rises up like the cliche pheonix. Aroma wasn't there. Bubbabrewgans threw this in as an extra, thanks bro. Classy move.

Taste, really bitter, was surprised to read that the alcohol was 9%. They say 5 hop variations, but nothing really stands out or creates some super hoppy blend in this combination. Tastes like the standards, some cascade and maybe columbus. Light body though, so it leaves you feeling a little more buzzed, not knowing it.

Not too complex, but a good beer to get me a little buzzed up to let it fly on the disc golf course in a few minutes. Nevada 28, Idaho 3 at halftime, you're going down Corpulent!

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2010 22:44:17 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of Thorpe429


3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Poured into a tulip. Appearance is an orange apricot with a brown streak in there. Mild head and not much lacing. Nose is fairly sharp with some really nice floral and citrus notes. The taste features the floral and citrus hops, costarring some light caramel in the background. Feel is fairly bitter and a bit dry. Drinks fairly well but doesn't hit all the right spots.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2010 14:39:02 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of begforme4484


3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a delicious looking golden amber that is hard to peer through. About a finger and a half worth of frothy white head. Lacing clings and covers the glass well.

Nose is mainly comprised of malts. Very doughy smelling. Nice floral hops overtones with a slight citrus backing. The alcohol comes through at the end.

Lots of flavor. Lots of malts and lots of hops. A bitterness bites the tongue right away slightly fading way to a caramel/woody flavoring from the malt. Nice bitter hop citrusness at the end, followed by a warming from the alcohol.

Medium bodied, very slight resinous, and somewhat lingering.

Drinkability is one a clip for me. Pretty good flavor, but I'll have a black label on the rocks if I wanna warm up.

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2010 01:35:13 | More by begforme4484
Photo of whoneeds8


3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to JoeyBeerBelly for providing this in the winnings for Week 6 of the Sunday Night Football Squares LIF.

Poured into a tulip glass a burnt yellow with a thick four finger white head and great lacing all the way down the glass. Being allergy season, I can't smell a thing. The taste is different for an IIPA. It must be a different variety of hops that they have used. There isn't much of a malt sweetness to this, making it a pretty strong hop bomb. It's just an odd hop bomb. The mouthfeel is a little on the light side for the style, and the alcohol burn is very noticable. This is an interesting version of an IIPA.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2010 23:44:51 | More by whoneeds8
Photo of JizackFH

New York

3.85/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Has a great golden honey color with a three finger head that lasts quite a while and clings well to the side of the glass.

S - Smells more malty than hoppy, but the hops are definetly present. Citrus notes also.

T - This has a bit of a fruit taste to it with the hops initially. Hops and malt are very balanced. A little bit of an alcohol kick at the very end. Hop bitterness sticks to the back of the tongue and roof of the mouth. With there was more hop presence though.

M - A little bit heavily bodied, but not too bad. medium carbonation. Coats the mouth really nicely.

D - This is a pretty easy beer to kick back and enjoy. Goes down pretty smooth.

all in all this is a good beer,but i think i expected a little more out of it. I really wish there was more of a hop kick, if there were it would really make this beer more interesting. I would definetly drink this beer again, but I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2010 03:23:07 | More by JizackFH
Photo of BearsOnAcid


3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of STEG. Thanks! Not sure how fresh it is but it sat in my fridge for a few weeks before i opened it.

Honey colored liquid. Reminds me of those plastic sticks filled with honey in an old New England mercantile shop full of junk. Soft, fluffy white head that clings to the glass as it falls back down. I actually can't find one thing wrong with the appearance of this beer.

Smell is malt forward, East coast style bitches! Carmel, biscuit, and honey in the aroma. Little bit of peppery citrus, pineapple, mango and milk from the hops

Taste has an initial pineapple hop flavor followed by sweet malt. Slight bitternes, for a DIPA, on the back of the tongue with a very small alcohol burn. Malt and hops are at an equilibrium, neither fight to standout. I wish the hopping stood out more though.

Mouthfeel has something to hold on to. Average carbonation. I drank nearly a whole growler of this to myself one night. Scary drinkability for a 9% beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2010 23:48:48 | More by BearsOnAcid
Photo of jsanford


3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Generous extra from jastack. Thanks, man! Poured into my New Belgium globe.

A - Pours a hazy deep gold with a huge, chunky head of white foam. Looks like egg whites that have been beaten to stiff peaks. Retention and lacing are ridiculous.

S - Sweet tangerine-smelling hops dominate with a bit of sweet malt and pine resin. Very clean and rather unique.

T - Begins with bitter grapefruit hops but smooths out with a fairly sweet malt backbone. There's a very nice floral quality to the finish. Well balanced, despite the blistering hoppiness.

M - Smooth and incredibly creamy. Medium body really coats the tongue and the carbonation is crisp and refreshing. The 9% ABV is completely hidden.

D - Pretty drinkable, but the ABV would have me on my butt after 2.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2010 23:09:40 | More by jsanford
Photo of foogerd

New York

4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- clear golden yellow body just a bit of haze to it, eggshell colored billowing head thick and creamy
S- citrus hops right off the bat grapefruit and a bit of orange peel with a strong slightly sweet malt backing
T-sweet bitter hops tease the tongue very tasty complements spicy cheese perfectly , really a perfect DIPA
M- thick and perfectly carbonated
D- your dream dipa to be drinking for the night

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2010 04:03:03 | More by foogerd
Photo of tdawgydog

New York

4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Probably the best DIPA I've had this side of the Mississippi. My 2nd fill of my Russian River growler

A- pours a nice deep golden color with a pretty generous head. Kept a really good head although it only camped out in my growler for maybe 2 hours before it was consumed.

S - nice and piney. Very fresh scent, very inviting to the nose.

T - again one of the better DIPA's I've had on the East coast. Piney and flavorful, an excellent well crafted beer.

D - hmm, I just finished a growler that I bought this afternoon, that should tell you something. Goes down smooth, I could drink this stuff all night long.

M - well bodied, good carbonation. Great beer.

I haven't enjoyed a beer this much in a long time!

Serving type: growler

10-03-2010 04:15:26 | More by tdawgydog
Photo of codewarrior

New York

4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500mL Standalone, into a Ithaca Beer Co. pint glass.

Visited Ithaca Beer Co. today, and got to talking with Benz about other amazing brewers that I miss from New York. Among the first to come up was Captain Lawrence. After talking at length about the Captain, Benz went in back and came out with a bottle of Captain's Reserver Imperial IPA, and just gave it to me. Long live Ithaca Beer Co, and long live benz.

L: Deep golden, coppery, borderline bronze. Dollops of beautiful head, ridiculous lacing in glass. The head is absolutely gorgeous.

S: Sweeter than expected. Requisite hops are oddly in the back of the nose, not th efront.

T: Tastes exactly like it smells. Only stronger. Sweeter up front, hoppier in the back. Wonderfully balanced, but not in a traditional way (hops up front, sweetness in back). Fades into a gentle grape finish. Totally unexpected, but not unwelcome in the least.

F: Really really good feel on this, rich but light.

D: Damn good beer.

Thanks again to Benz, and Ithaca Beer Co.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2010 03:22:18 | More by codewarrior
Photo of WhiteOak


3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The appearance is a medium bright yellow, with a moderate white head.

Smells and tastes of pronounced citric hops, Fir bud resin, pineapple, tangerine rind, with caramel malt hiding beneath.

This brew is in line with many other IIPAs/DIPAs, with nothing special to note, but nothing particular to fault.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2010 00:44:58 | More by WhiteOak
Photo of rtepiak


3.58/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a pretty textbook blend of no surprises. Pineapple and fingernail nose. Palate of pretty much that with bitter finish that has a quaility of greens. As it gets warmer it exposes some lemon fruit. I must say that its extremely one dimensional. Not crisp feel but just sweet and hops.

Serving type: on-tap

09-20-2010 04:45:40 | More by rtepiak
Photo of Spica66


3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From CooperEllis. Thanks, John!

A: Golden color with a very white head with decent formation and retention. Lacing as you drink.

S: Seems too malty with not enough hops for a DIPA. And the hops don't seem to have an earthy smell to them. They do not have a fresh aroma.

T: The malt is ok, but the hops just miss the mark. Bitter and earthy. I believe more finishing hops could have helped this beer immensely!

M: Creamy and carbonated.

D: The beer goes down easily enough. If you like the hops profile, then you will be all set.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2010 21:04:12 | More by Spica66
Photo of Chaney

District of Columbia

4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

There was a Captain Lawrence tasting over at Pizza Paradiso in DC a couple of months about and I missed it... Drat! I really wanted to be there because I had never sampled a CL product before. Last week, I was in "Connecticut Ave. Wine, Liquor, & Deli" and found this gem. Funny...I never even knew the area got CL products. Then again, I guess DC can get anything. The bottle looked fresh (no dust, on the front row, etc.), so I grabbed it and here we are:

A: Medium Yellow-orange color, with about 1/2 inch head, which became foamier after subsequent pours. That sucker lingered throughout the session - Yikes!

T: Pretty sweet, which muted some of the grapefruit bitterness. Maybe a little bit of peach? Very flavorful!

M: Coats the mouth pretty heavily, and starts to overstay its welcome a bit towards the end. I kept a glass of water handy.

D: I had no trouble finishing the bottle, although the intense syrupiness was a bit much. But hey....this is a reserve beer with a 9% ABV. What was I expecting?...a Dortmunder?

Overall, a delicious beer session!

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2010 01:05:31 | More by Chaney
Photo of Kegatron


4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16.9 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a clear gold, with 2 fingers of eggshell-white head. This retains with a rich ¼ finger that drenches the sides of the glass with thick spotty lacing. The aroma is floral, spicy, and piney smelling, with a sharp punctuation of citrus flavor (grapefruit in particular is coming out strong) that is then tempered on the sides somewhat with some light tropical notes. A thick graininess from the malts fills out the back but this lessens into more of a sweet breadiness as this warms up.

The taste is bitter with grapefruit and citrus rind, being well balanced fruit, honeyed sweetness, and grainy malts. The bitterness is a little harsh in the back-end at first but this soothes out more as things hit room temp. A resinous and spicy finish really clings hard on the palate with a steady dryness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a great feeling smooth creaminess to the carbonation but there is just enough of a prickle here to help pop the bitterness that much more. This is also an easy feeling underlying slickness that just helps this slide across the tongue effortlessly and the alcohol is present with just a little bit of light warmth. Pretty impressive feel for 9%.

I think that I liked this a little more in the growler when I last had this a couple of years ago but this still holds its own in the bottle as well. Quite forceful with the hops, yet this still stays relatively smooth and drinkable. Once worth trying from the Captain.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2010 19:36:58 | More by Kegatron
Captain's Reserve Imperial IPA from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 972 ratings.