Sneaky Pete Imperial IPA - Laughing Dog Brewing

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Sneaky Pete Imperial IPASneaky Pete Imperial IPA

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very good

177 Reviews
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Reviews: 177
Hads: 685
Avg: 3.82
pDev: 30.89%
Wants: 14
Gots: 84 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Laughing Dog Brewing visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: CampusCrew on 03-28-2011

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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 177 | Hads: 685
Photo of GilGarp
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottled 6-12-13. Single 12 oz bottle brought to me by my brother in law from Oregon.

Served cold into a goblet, Sneaky Pete is a hazy brown amber with thick off-white head. It has very good retention and leaves some nice lacing.

Aroma is sweet and hoppy but not very fresh. Much more like a barley wine than an imperial IPA.

Flavor is big and bold but balanced. The malt bill is big enough to support the hops with a caramel and toffee sweetness. The hops are still there and supply decent bitterness but it isn't as intense as it likely was back in June when it was bottled.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated. The alcohol is there but it has settled in nicely over the past six months.

Overall a very solid barley wine but not what I was expecting given the label of imperial IPA.

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Photo of Scotchboy
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Partial, counter-pressure filled, marked 12oz bottle from an anonymous contributor...split with my brother into tulips.

A: Opens with a hiss, which is good considering the bottle is just over halfway full...clear golden color with big bubbles.

S: Big big tropical fruit component and a decent amount of citrus and super-fresh pine needle; in fact the pint is really nice on this one, and that is not usually something I'm a huge fan of. Slightly sugary malt backbone. Pungent.

T: Hop-driven here as well; tropical fruit basket, peach, mango, pineapple, citrus, orange peel, some pine, sugary/bready malt undertone, and pungent.

MF: Medium feel with moderate bitterness; this beer leans fruity instead of puckeringly bitter.

O: Really nice, remind me a lot of Lagunitas Sucks and other big tropical, malty double IPA's.

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Photo of joeworrall
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

comparing this tonight against Sierra Nevada Hoptimum and Firestone Walker Double Jack... tought competition!

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a wine goblet, the color is orange, and very clear, with at thin head. Aroma is citrus dominant with warm mouthfeel from the high alcohol content. The flavor is well balance, with a slightly bitter aftertaste, but very enjoyable.

This is a good IIPA, probably in my top 20, but against the other two I'm drinking tonight, it's in last place.

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Photo of Hokie888
4.45/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Randomly came across this beer the other day and boy am I happy I did. As a man that loves imperial IPAs, this one definitely is one of the better ones I've had lately. Good mixture of taste and smoothness. Most beers this strong (10%) would not taste this well but I came away very impressed. Must try for anyone who considers themselves an imperial IPA fan.

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Photo of dwren89
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: amber brown/reddish with fluffy off white head and good clarity

Aroma: citrusy with a little pine, grapefruit, caramel and toasted bread notes

Taste: definitely a hop driven beer, most of the taste comes from grapefruit and pine hop character, with slight toasted bread malt character. Some fusel alcohol taste present

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, medium carbonation

Overall: Definitely refreshing and delicious, this Imperial IPA is not too big and heavy that you can't have a few of them. However there seems to be a little body lacking to balance the hop bill. The beer comes off as a little too unbalanced, even for an Imperial IPA, but only slightly. The fusel alcohol notes are also present, though no totally unwelcome. Overall a good choice for a strong IPA, but I wouldn't say this is my favorite.

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Photo of chickenflea
3.91/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep amber, moderate to large tannish head, foamy, nice lacing. Strong resiny nose, pithy, slight alcohol and hops. Fruity malt aroma, not unlike a dubbel. Pours cloudy but settles quickly into a clear amber. Weird. Moderately sweet dark fruit flavor with hint of citrus. Hops are well blended and not overpowering as the trend seems to be lately. Alcohol is muted. Body is medium. Texture is chewy. When warmer, the beer finishes with a fairly dry mandarin orange taste. A nice double. Balanced in all regards. Good job.

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Photo of BaileysIrishTom
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

If this had a Stone label on it, I'm sure it would have a rating 10 pts higher.

At first pour, it appears very beer like, not too under beery, and not too over beery. Well I poured this one out of a bottle and in to my stomach, so I didn't really notice the foamy slowly slipping down the side of the glass. Hey I'm travelling and my favorite beer glasses don't pack well.
At first smell it smells very beer like, not too overpowering or underpowering. If I had to classify, then I would say it smells like beer.
It tastes and feels like beer. I'm pretty sure it must be beer. Note: some beers don't taste like beer. Beer shouldn't have chemicals in it.

If you've read this far, thank you. I'm comparing it to a Stone Brewed beer and that should speak volumes. It came as a "Total wine beer-geek" suggestion. I like it.

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Photo of beertunes
3.21/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a lightly hazy orange-gold color with less than a half-inch of light khaki head that had low retention and lacing.

The aroma mostly had some sweet malts as a base, with a light pine hop scent on top. There was a bit of citrus hops in the background. On the tongue, there were the same sweet malts and piney hops. The citrus hop taste was a bi bitter on the finish.

The body was on the full side of medium, which was OK for me, but the bitter finish lingered too long. Drinkability was decent enough, for a 10% brew, and my 12oz was gone quickly enough. Overall, a pretty take on the style, worth a shot if you see it.

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Photo of bunkyzzz
4.75/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

my girlfriend gave me a 4 pack and it made me very happy. what can i say, it's from idaho. what else comes from Idaho that you would drive 30 minutes to get? it's strong enough to let you know it, but no unpleasant over-alcohol flavor.
great color, great head, great first gulp. fills the nose, fills the whole head.
for Imperials, this beer stands up with Lagunitas Sucks..
definitely try it. you will like it. especially if your girlfriend gives you a 4 pack.

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Photo of MikeWard
3.44/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

poured from 12oz bottle into standard pint glasss. Bottled on 2/10/13, so a bit older than would be preferred.

Knew I was in trouble upon cracking open the cap and the beer foamed over. Not a lot. but you wouldn't expect that from a beer that's been upright in the fridge for 2 weeks.

Appearance was ok, deep amber, quite hazy, slightly off white head which retained. Most lacing was around the original head. Faint but persistent stream of bubbles.

Smell was soapy with a few floral tones.

Taste & mouth was not what I expected, or perhaps I should have. Zero hop taste, but loads of malt. Alcohol taste toward the end, then bitter on the middle back of the tongue. Semi thick cloying syrupy feel on the tongue. Sweet, but not in an appealing way. Later, the 10.0 alcohol kicked in. No, I am not liking this one bit.

Overall, not something I enjoyed. Perhaps it would be more pleasing in the winter months. Upon reading the label, this beer was "bottled and brewed for" their Virginia distributor. I am in PA, and Shangy's distributes LD here, but I can't think of any reason that should matter in the taste. Guessing their beers get redistributed out east as needed.

Hopefully I have an opportunity to taste a fresher one in the future. Otherwise, it's adios to Sneaky Pete.

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Photo of brentk56
3.65/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The liquid pours a clear amber and is topped by an impressive head that does its job on the lacing front

Smell: Big, biscuity caramel malts with spearmint and pine sap

Taste: Up front, the taste buds are overwhelmed by the malt - caramel, biscuit and some spicy rye; in the middle, the hops come on strong, bringing an aggressive bitterness that verges on piney but is generally just bitter; in the finish, the malts dominate though the hops don't give up

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Overall: As others have noticed, this beer comes off more like a Barleywine than a DIPA; I don't really care for the hop profile and I prefer my DIPAs to be a bit more one-sided in favor of the hops

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Photo of mvanaskie13
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a pilsner style glass, color is darker amber, opaque, with copper edges; head is light tan, very dense and thick, presenting about 1" thick then lingering with feint lacing.

Smell is lightly boozy, with very balanced amounts of malt and piney bitterness, touch of grapefruit; malt scents are light toast, caramel and biscuit.

Taste is surprising for this strength, pretty well balanced, very bitter but not overdone. Malt sweetness is present and flavors are similar to the nose, toast and caramel hints of biscuit.

Mouthfeel is lightly cloying and strong on the tongue, but expected at this strength and with this color, maybe a touch too much for my preference.

Overall, very well done dipa, surprising balance for its strength; presents with a hint that it might be to sweet, but the great bitter and hop flavors clean it up well.

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Photo of hackmann
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: amber blood orange body with a one finger, if that, bone white head and little to no lacing

Aroma: citrus and grassy hops, little fruity – mango like, very aromatic, lightly toasted grains,

Flavors: rich caramel malts; toasted sweet grains; a solid combination of grapefruit, little pine, and sweet pink peppercorn;

Mouthfeel: fine fizzy carbonation feel, almost creamy, sticky hops, nice bitterness, balanced with an earthy sweetness, nice alcohol warmth, pink peppercorn and red grapefruit on the finish, full-medium body,

To the Point: this is a very nice Imperial IPA; it gets better as it warms up; this is a must try; and I am personally feeling the 10%

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Photo of Ego
4.26/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a nit over one finger of foam, a deep ruby red tone with a mere smattering of bubbles rising up, lacing is a really nice drape of microbubbles of equal proportion, some legs are apparent from the ABV, pretty good looking, the hue is definitely different from many DIPAs passing through these parts

some big pine and citrus (grapefruit), definite malt lurking underneath that melds with the alcohol, you can sense the alcohol but it is like smelling a barleywine, you kind of expect the scent and enjoy it rather than it being a distraction from a brew that is to hot alcohol wise, the hop aroma is by no means a bomb destroying you with hop-dom, I would guess this is not dry hopped but that is fine, I like the balance here, I suppose it reminds me of Bigfoot but yet without that barleywine twang if you know what I mean

taste etc...
thick and juicy booty, very subtle carbonation.. it almost lulls you into thinking it has none but it has just enough to carry the weight, the massive amounts of malt really carry the water here, loads of body and backbone support the medium strong hop punch, this is not a mouth destroying hop experience, the balance of the hop varities is really nice with the malts chosen, for the ABV this is remarkably smooth, it has a sweet finish which masks the alcohol hit but you do get the nice bittering at the same time, this really hits on all points
hop punch
malt sweetness

it is in balance which is not always the case with beers in this ABV range/style.

I had tried various things from this brewery in the past and was actually unimpressed, well, paint me silly and call me hoohah, this is one damn awesome brew, a definite sleeper this thing just seems so easy going that it will tank you without you noticing, but the main point is how well rounded/crafted this is. is it a pure DIPA ? eh... who cares, it is a damn fine beer. and as far as I know dogs can not laugh... but I have seen them smile.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours an amber brown leaning more towards amber with a full head. Head retains well. Chunky lacing on the glass.

S: Piney hops, sweet caramel aroma.

T: Full flavor - starts sweet - nice malting. Caramel, grapefruit, pine. Bitter hop aftertaste and really nicely balanced.

M: Good, but falls somewhat short of other ratings. Not as full as expected but still nice.

O: Great brew.

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Photo of Esstman
4.39/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sneaky Pete's is very comparable to Hopslam but runs about 60% the cost and is available late spring and all summer. It is a great imperial IPA with an abundance of hops and a smooth finish. At 10% it is strong but by no means shows its high alcohol % in its taste. A great starter to any evening of drinking.

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Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.69/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

32 oz. growler filled today from a freshly tapped keg where the line was cleaned during the change, poured into a NB snifter.

A - Pours a rich golden brown. A one-finger head of eggnog-white loose, fluffy foam with lots of pronounced bubbles falls at a moderate pace, leaving a ring of broken lace around the glass and islands of soap suds bubbles on the surface. Held to a full-spectrum light, the beer is a vibrant, almost neon orange red and rather opaque, although a tiny column of effervescence can be seen rising through the middle. Rich, sugary legs coat the glass as it's finished.

S - Woody hops weave into rich caramel malts, which weave into citrus / tropical fruit hops. Hints of white pepper spiciness jump to grapefruit and pineapple and then to caramels with notes of orange and honey. Just as a particular scent emerges, it disappears and turns into another. It's a complex and interesting effect. As it warms, the rich sugars of the malts come forward; it's almost a hopped-up Scotch ale.

T - Woody bitterness on a blanket of rich caramel-toasted breads. Lots of underlying malts to transport the hops, but the two sides of the coin aren't really one. Finish is dominated by a sense of dried flowers, with the bitterness giving the malts the taste of somewhat burnt light wheat toast. Still, that toast also comes with orange marmalade and honey. There's an overall rough edge to this taste profile that offers a backend that wants to kiss and make up. The ABV on this beer is very-well hidden and there's no suggestion that it's the alcohol providing the edge. As it warms in the glass, some rather subtle suggestions of tropical fruit appear in the finish, but even then they're nowhere what the nose suggests they might be.

M - Somewhat fizzy with moderate carbonation. Moderate body and with a somewhat loosely integrated structure where the malts and hops are in the same neighborhood but not closely joined. Decently long finish that's dominated by the hops but allows occasional echos of the caramel sugars on the tongue.

O - There's clearly lots of rich ingredients in this brew, but the forwardness of the woody hops along with the rye malts gives it a roughness, like a rip saw thru old lumber, that isn't overcome by the rest of the flavors. This beer screams for barrel-aging to take this edge off. It would have also been nice to get the grapefruit and tropical fruits present in the nose fully into the taste profile, but it seems they get overrun from roughness. The nose was really interesting in the way the various components kept darting in and out around each other, but this translated into a loose-jointed brew when drinking rather than an integrated one where the tastes transitioned elegantly.

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Photo of acevenom
4.28/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a glass mug. The beer pours a darker shade of dull copper with a thin white head that doesn't stick around. There are a lot of visible bubbles rising in the beer. The beer smells of tropical fruit, citrus, some resiny pine, and bready malt. This is the definition of a juicy DIPA. There's a tropical fruit and citrus explosion up front with some back end piney bitterness. There's a good malty backbone that brings some nice breadiness to the flavor. The flavor also hides the high alcohol fairly well. The body is full with moderate carbonation. The aftertaste sticks around and there's some slight dryness in the finish. The beer sips pretty well. This is an excellent beer.

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Photo of silverking
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- It pours a clear Crimson with some "floaties". It has a light tan head with excellent retention. There are thick sheets of lacing down the sides of my glass with each sip.

S- Lots of piney and citrusy hops, backed by a healthy caramel malt backbone.

T- Caramel, grapefruit, citrus rind, papaya. The finish is dominated by grapefruit, with a moderate hop bitterness. It comes across sweeter than I had expected.

M- Medium bodied, Carbonation is light. Velvety. A bit sticky as well.

O- Another winner from Laughing Dog brewery.

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Photo of hosehead83
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass
Brassy gold in color, with an Impressive 2-inch cap of off-white foam.
Aroma-Toasted malt, piney hops
Taste-Faintly sweet toasted malt, caramel note, sweeped up in onrush of big, piney hops that balance everything out. Overall nice flavor and balance.

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Photo of Jacurdy60
4.06/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-Deep amber color with an orange-yellow hue. Very beautiful. One-finger tan colored head that's pretty carbonated. Excellent retention. Coats entire side of glass as I sip.

S-Fantastic, complex nose. Piney-citrus hops hit you in the face at first sniff, but then it fades to a caramel-malt sweetness. The bitter esters fade into sweet carmel very nicely

T-Not as complex as the nose. Semi-abrasive and bitter finish. The caramel sweetness does not transfer well here, but it still tastes good.

MF-Very rich for an imperial IPA. Carbonated at first, but very smooth in the finish. Fantastic.

O-A superb IPA. If you ever see this, buy it. Complex, but very satisfying.

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Photo of VitoFerrante
4.24/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very high quality DIPA. Juicy. Malty. Hoppy. All of those in multiple dimensions. Find it. Buy it. Drink it. Drink more. This is up there with the best of them: Heady, Panzer Wolf, 90 Minute. All contenders. You will love this beer is monster unfiltered DIPA's are your thing.

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Photo of dpianka
4.29/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

date of tasting: 3/15/2013
place of tasting: Barley Vine
beer: Sneaky Pete
type: Ale
style: Imperial IPA
brewery: Laughing Dog Brewery
glass: mug
temperature of beer: 55

Appearance: light caramel, think hennessy or urine at a fair

Smell: cream, peaches, peaches and cream, caramel, mango

Taste: like someone blended peaches and cream together with a whole lotta hops, no that’s not a bad thing. A little blueberry comes out as it warms up

Mouthfeel: creamy, damn i cant get off this peaches and cream thing

Overall Impression: i’m never crazy about sweetness in much of anything except dessert. It’s not my favorite in that aspect. It would be unfair to give it a poor review on that basis because it really is a good beer. Absolutely well made and would be great for someone looking for a hoppy beer that had perfect balance of malty sweetness.

Peaches and cream
I need it cause you know that I'm a fiend
Gettin' freaky in my Bentley limousine
It's even better when it's with ice cream
Know what I mean

Food Pairing: i want this with chocolate cake. Or a grilled cheese with havarti and sourdough topped with coarse sea salt

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Photo of KomodoDragon
4.27/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - Carmine colored withe a trace of white head and scattered lacing. Clean and clear.

S - Grassy hops, grapefruit, some cinnamon.

T - Strong malt upfront, smooth and sweet but lacking in balance and crispness. A sugary feel in the aftertaste. Alcohol is pronounced, almost like a scotch ale. Hop bitterness is present but as an afterthought. Some hints of raisin and plum.

M - Light carbonation, which is perfect to enjoy the flavor profile. There also a tacky feel to this

This almost takes Imperial a bit too far, and the 10% ABV is sneaking up on no-one. Tasty - Yes. Is this losing its IPA roots - Yes.

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Photo of CHickman
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 2/10/2012: Pours a very cloudy orange amber color with a 1 finger creamy light tan head that was full of tiny bubbles and faded slowly to average, leaving good spotty lacing.

Smells of sweet malt, caramel, mango, pineapple, orange, guava, citrus hops, pine hops, brown sugar, dark fruit, light herbs, floral hops, syrup and graham cracker; the sweetness and citrus are aggressive and like a barleywine and yet so sweet and hoppy like fresh wet hops were added. No trace of the 10% ABV in the nose, just lots of strong sweet notes.

Tastes very sweet and boozy up front, with of caramel, toffee, mango, pineapple, orange, guava, citrus hops, biscuit, sweet malt, butter, piney hops, brown sugar, dark fruit, light herbs, floral hops, syrup, light cinnamon, graham cracker, and blueberry pancake; it is a very sweet beer, with strong piney and citrus hops almost dominating, but allowing some malt and booze (almost like rum) to add some balance. It leans well towards the sweet side, but this is still OK to drink for a DIPA. It’s close to being too sweet and offensive, but has enough juicy hop flavors to make this drinkable.

Mouthfeel is thick and smooth, buttery, with a chewy, heavy body, very basic carbonation and a bitter citrus aftertaste (complete with a pucker like sucking a grapefruit).

Overall I liked it, but it was a tad bit too sweet and the alcohol made it hard to put down easy, so this is not something I would seek out again. There are a lot better DIPA’s out there, but I’m glad I was able to try this sweet juicy brew.

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Sneaky Pete Imperial IPA from Laughing Dog Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 177 ratings.