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Abrasive Ale - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Abrasive AleAbrasive Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

885 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 885
Hads: 4,017
Avg: 4.47
pDev: 17.23%
Wants: 2,147
Gots: 533 | FT: 26
Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Buebie on 12-27-2008

Hazy gold in color, this Oatmeal Double IPA has aggressive aromas of candied grapefruit/tangerine and tropical fruit. Malted oats greatly enhance the body and the high level of bitterness is balanced by this sweetness. Citra hops are used for aroma & flavor additions and for dry-hopping, while Warrior hops are used primarily for bitterness.

OG 19.5 Plato
Color 5 SRM
Hops: Citra, Warrior
Yeast: English Ale
Malt: 2-row, Golden Naked Oats
ABV: 9%
View: Beers (55) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 885 | Hads: 4,017
Photo of Beerlover
2.37/5  rDev -47%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I dont like giving beers a bad review, but this definatley needs to be brought down a few notches... not a horrible beer by any means, but when you factor in the price (which unfortunatly is not part of the rate system) this beer is a RIP-OFF!!! there are many other double ipas you can find out there that are just as good if not BETTER for a LOT less $$$!! some examples- these being much better tasting in my humble opinion than abrasive and MUCH cheaper - my top 5 favorite double ipas all taste much better than this:
1: Stone's "Ruination" - 4 pack bottles 11.99
2: Odell's "Mycenary" 4 pack bottles 10.99
3: Weyerbacher "Double Symcoe" 4 pack bottles 11.99
and a 4th just to hit it home, the best double ipa - bang 4 ur buck wise
4: Central Waters' Illumination 4 pack bottles for 11.99!!! GREAT DEAL & GREAT FLAVOR!!!
5: Dark Horse's Double Crooked Tree, very spendy but very worth it (15.99 4 pack bottles)


anyways this is what i got on "Abra$ive" beside the pri$e point

appreance: Clear golden copperish color, thin white head

aroma: very hoppy, but a mix between citrus hoppy and earthy hoppy, earthyness takes the forefront

taste: high/low carbonation, very hoppy but unfortunatly almost to a harsh degree.... not that balanced when compared to other double ipas, not bad by any means but when factoring the price, very, VERY dissapointing. Unless of course your only concern is supporting your local brewery... someone let ne know please if there is a local twin cities double ipa available in the stores (i dont go out to drink, too expensive) besides Lucid's "camo" (HATED) and Surly's "abrasive"...

Surly's good but overrated and EXTREAMLY OVERPRICED! hopefully this review doesnt get revoked for being too negative, but i dont think surly has bought off B.A. yet... like it seems they possibly have with the "Growler" magazine (look at the Dec/Jan issue)

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Photo of pepsican
2.88/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Huge thanks to skinnyguy for sending this my way. Amber pour with a nice sized off white head. Aroma is grass, grapefruit, diacetyl, and caramel. Flavor is up front caramel malt, butter, grapefruit rind, toffee, and grass. Bitter finish, good carbonation. Tasted old less than a week after release...not my thing.

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Photo of ZAP
2.93/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A-Tan colored..

S-Interesting give and take between the juicy tropical fruits (pineapple. papaya, mango), and the garlicy characteristics I associate with the Summit hop. There is also a floral aspect to this as well. I like the floral and tropical fruits....not so much the garlic, but Summit is one of my least favorite hops.

T-Really unabrasive...the garlic hits strong as does the floral dimension on the taste...not much for bitterness and only a smattering of the tropical fruits I noticed on the aroma...malt choice works well.

M-Not immense but DIPAish...a little grapefruit rind like bitterness on the finish but this is nothing like I expected it to be from the bitterness standpoint.

D-I'm glad I tried it. I don't dig all the garlic notes from the hops but that is me. I'd take Furious every day of the year over this. One of my least favorite Surly beers but in no way bad. I had six of these and had them over several nights..they were getting hard to drink at the end...something just doesn't jive right with my buds...will never buy again...unless they change hops eveyr year or something..

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Photo of Mavajo
3.04/5  rDev -32%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Orange/amber body with a white head and some lacing.

Aroma is loaded with big fresh hops -- they jump out of the glass at you. Unfortunately, the taste is a disaster. There's big citrus/grapefruit hops, but then a nasty onion/vegetable taste. I tried to soldier on, but the onion taste just got to be too much.

Mouthfeel is fine.

After the awesome aroma, this had the makings of becoming one of my new favorites. Unfortunately, that massive onion taste just killed it.

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Photo of deebo
3.06/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A can from 2/13/12 poured into a pint glass.

A-Pours a shit ton of an orangish/pink tinted sticky white head with amazing retention and lacing. Clarity is hazy. Light brown/orange color. A very interesting looking beer.

S-Tons of fresh floral hops, a bit of sweetness in there too.

T-What an intresting beer. Hop forward of course (citrus first ending with plenty of resiny bitterness) but there is plenty of a very sweet malt taste in the middle which makes this one somewhat palatable.

M-Medium bodied with hops carried by plenty of carbonation. A bit of a oily/resiny finish.

D-If you can drink more than a pint of this you're a better man than me-it really starts to wear you down after half a pint! This one is going to stick to the palette for a awhile.

O-If you like DIPAs you must give this one a try. Truly unique and named appropriately. Too bitter and hop resin/oily for my taste but cool to give a try.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.09/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cans arrived today thanks to an extremely generous BA. Thanks man! Can dated 1/13/15 poured to a tulip glass deep copper colored with nearly no head. Aroma is straight up malt, no hop presence whatsoever. Straight up caramel sugar. Flavor follows with no hop presence, straight malt syrup, almost like this has been sitting around for a few years. Wow. Thick and syrupy, lower carbonation. Really horrendous. Maybe if this were called a barleywine, I'd give it a few more points. But wow. This is Abrasive?

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Photo of troupos40
3.21/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I know I'm not the only one to get a flat abrasive, 2 were great and 2 were very low carb. This review is for the flat ones, I just believe this beer shouldn't be rated this high when there is the possibility of tainted cans. The good is really good, but the bad is pretty bad. Surly really needs to take QC seriously.

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
3.24/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Generously shared by Rutager.

A: Cloudy amber liquid with 1/2" white head.

S: Smells like a combination of rank body odor, garlic and onions.

T: Like it smells: body odor, garlic and onions as well as earthy hop flavours.

M: Medium to thin viscosity and a medium level of carbonation.

O: I really dislike CTZ hops and I have a palate that picks up off flavours with beers that are heavily hopped with CTZ which is why I disliked this beer so much.

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Photo of cokes
3.48/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden bronze bodied with a top of dirty linen that stays a bit and laces nicely.
Honeyed bicuits aroma with apricot jam, and a glass of grapefruit juice. The stale garlicky bad breath aroma ruins things a bit. Otherwise, it'd be alright.
The malt throws down a quilt of lightly sweet breadiness, not unlike powdered doughnuts. It's delicious here and the hops haven't even arrived yet. When they do, everything falls into confusion. A flash of pineapple. A ghost of mango. A shadow of grapefruit. Then a more concrete materialization of onion skins and garlic.
The medium full body is aided by the fleecy, steadfast carbonation. The alcohol is a nonfactor. I find myself drinking it fairly quickly, despite not enjoying certain aspects.
The garlic and onion notes partially ruin this for me, but this is not GUBNA..I was able to get past them. More pressing was that as a beer calling itself Abrasive, the hopping was anything but. Furious is considerably more bitter than this.
I don't understand the love the love here.

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Photo of harrymel
3.5/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Canned 3/21/11

A: 16oz can wrapped in aluminum foil and topped with standard pull tab. So I pulled the tab and poured out some honey colored ale. Maybe a drop of vamp blood in there, but pretty washed-out. Transient fine white foam finds resolve as a thin, broken sheet of a surface - but collared. Quantity of lace is equivalent to a Paris Hilton personal film: none. (3.5)

S: Hops. IPA. Grapefruit among other citric rinds. Slightly sweet nose candy of a malt profile. I’m guessing that there’s quite a bite to this one. An unbaked bread smell - doughy. I keep thinking I can smell more and more...tangerine? Excited. (3.5)

T: The dough is the first thing I taste. Then flanking of bitter and spicy hops roll over my palate and the beer may even be over douching the beer with hops. Tannic. As the beer warms up the bitterness dies out a bit and the beer becomes relatively sweet. (4)

M: Medium body with low carbonation. Dry finish only slight heat (guessing ABV in the 7% range). I think maybe my teeth dislike this beer - the enamel is flecking off. (3.5)

O: Still guessing IPA and this one is sweet and definitely drinkable. Actually reminds me of Dale’s Pale Ale (also an IPA).

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Photo of Bighuge
3.5/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper body. Wispy and light frothy white head. Lace is pretty full, as expected with a hop bomb like this. Aroma is very big on the pine needles pine resin thing. Which is good. Some grassy notes too. A little bong resin to boot. Flavor is all hops up front with a surprisingly subdued bitterness. Oh, it's there, just not as abrasive or raw as I was expecting. Hops give piney and grassy flavors. Alcohol hides fairly well under the blanket of hops. Medium bodied and lightly carbonated. Solid, if not spectacular, DIPA.

After having another tonight, after a Gubna, I realize even moreso that Abrasive is just not my kind of DIPA. I even notice some of that garlic and onion character, like their Surlyfest has. I'm guessing Summit hops. Maybe I'm wrong. In any case, this is decent enough, just not top of the line like Town Hall, Russian River, Hopslam, or Dreadnaught.

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Photo of tarheels86
3.52/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16oz can courtesy of beeranddogs. Pours a clear orange with a towering, creme head. Huge lace and infinite retention. Nose is not fresh hoppy but not stale hoppy, strawberry pancake syrup either. There is some candy corn, maple syrup, Taste is spicy, sweet, fruit punch, floral and herbal hoppy, loaded with honey, mint, butterscotch. Body is chewy, bitter, thick. Definitely not a hop bomb. Never devolves into an astringent, cloying mess. Even not ultra fresh, it has held itself together fairly nicely. 11/9/2010 6/5/7/4/14=3.6

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Photo of jeonseh
3.53/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a can into a glass

A - Dark amber with hints of orange, brown, and gold. Had a two finger off white head that went down to about a quarter of an inch.

S - Smells of orange and grapefruit. There is also a slight pine that comes up as well.

T - At first, I note sweet fruit with hints of pineapple and clementines. As the beer lingers, it become more bitter as the hops kick in. The hops are pine in nature and leave a lingering bitterness on the end of the beer. The hops actually come out a bit more in the finish than you would guess at first. Overall, this is one of the more hoppy DIPAs I've had. It does well to balance against the sweet at the beginning while keeping a good hoppy bitterness on the back end.

MF - Body is on the lower end of medium body and feels about thin for the beer. There is a very, slight stickiness to it and it has good carbonation to it as well. Leaves a slight hop resin on the tongue in the finish

O - A hoppier DIPA that leaves some hoppy bitterness, more than you would expect from the smell and the initial flavors you get. However, I was a little let down by this one as I did not think it was an elite DIPA. I'm happy to have some to try but would not go thru the work to get it. I have to say I actually like Furious much better.

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Photo of Wisconsinality
3.53/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 16oz can into a Duvel tulip.

A- Pours a nice blood moon orange that has a fair amount of haze to it. A nice one finger head that leaves a small cap on the beer and leaves some spotty lacing. Streams of tiny bubbles rise from the side of glass.

S- Not as big of a hop burst as I was expecting but decent nonetheless. More along the lines citrus hops, lemon and maybe a little pineapple. The malt is present in the nose which is less common in DIPA's.

T- A good amount of citrus hops but not tongue splitting. A little bit of pine and a good malt backbone which makes this pretty balanced. Also there is a nice bready after taste that smooths it out a little bit.

M- Like mentioned before, not tongue splitting bitter, so some might be disappointed. Medium bodied with good carbonation that might just be a little dry on the finish. A little warming on the way down from the alcohol.

D- A good offering that is well balanced for a DIPA. The alcohol really only presents its self once it warms and you are almost finished with the can. I was excited to try this at DLD but by that time my palate had already been destroyed. When I received a four pack of this I was a little let down. I think I will stick to Furious.

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Photo of 4thFloyd
3.53/5  rDev -21%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes. Based on almost all of the reviews, I was really looking forward to this beer. Maybe my expectations were too high or maybe I had a bad can (about 3 months old; can dated 2-06-15, drank on 4-25-15), but I was a little disappointed. Slightly hazy, bright golden color. Not much of a head which disappears quickly. Nice citrus aroma with just a little pine. Taste also big citrus and grapefruit, but quite a lot of pine bitterness as well. Bitterness was a little too much for me and not well integrated with the other flavors. The bitterness also lingered too long, limiting smoothness and drinkability. The alcohol is covered well. Not much malt sweetness or balance but good fullness of flavor.

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Photo of punkrkr27
3.62/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange-gold pour with a white head. Big citrus, melon and pine aroma with some sweet toffee and biscuit, a hint of floral character. Grapefruit, bubblegum, melon, honey and pine flavor with some sticky sweet caramel. Oily, medium-full body with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.66/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

500ml can served into an Orval goblet in high altitude Denver, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are high on account of the brewery. I don't usually like the style but it's Surly! I'm excited. Paired with popcorn.

A: 1.5 finger head of lovely cream lacing, great thickness, and excellent retention for the ABV. Colour is a nontransparent light amber.

Sm: A heavy hop aroma with some light cream. Pleasant and inviting. A strong aroma.

T: Very hoppy but also quite nicely balanced, avoiding the pitfall of too much bitterness on the finish present in so many (bad) IPAs. I quite fancy it. The cream isn't quite as pronounced as I'd like, but it's there. Some light toasted malt seems to come through as well.

Mf: Coarse and wet, suiting the flavours quite well. I'd like it a bit less coarse, but it's alright.

Dr: Very drinkable for an IPA. I'd like to try it on draught. It's a nice little IPA, with a nicely balanced hop profile.


11/28/13: Truncated can review.

Served into a stem-tulip in Minneapolis, MN. Expectations are high. Served cold, straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor. Reviewed as an imperial IPA because the description on the back identifies it as such. Canned 10/30/13. Reviewed live.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a 1.5 finger wide head of white colour. Nice creaminess and thickness. Decent frothiness. Nice consistency. Head retention is good - about 5 minutes. No lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Body colour is a translucent quasitransparent copper of good glowing vibrance. No yeast particles are visible.

Overall, it looks pretty good for an imperial IPA but isn't unique or special. No egregious flaws. I'm looking forward to trying it.

Sm: Dank hop resins and pine character. Some complementary nectary hop character. Lighter floral and herbal tones. Plenty of hop oils. Pale malts. Sticky tree sap. Maybe some evergreen. It's a delightful and appealing hop profile with seemingly well-chosen hops. I'm really looking forward to trying it. A clean and inviting aroma of above average strength.

No yeast character or alcohol is detectable, nor are any off notes.

T: Pine is definitely dominant, evoking pine needles, sap, and nectar. Floral and herbal hop character is subsidiary but effective. I do pick up some grapefruit and citrusy zest. Pale malts provide a supportive but unobtrusive foundation and keep the hop bitterness fairly well balanced without curbing the necessary hop bite too much. The malty side actually feels a bit candied. I'd like the hop bitterness to be a bit more tamed.

It's an extremely cohesive build, and even borders on gestalt. Enjoyable. I would like more depth of flavour, and the intensity of flavour is a bit low for the style. Flavour duration is excellent, leaving hop oils and accompanying bitterness lingering on the palate. Complex enough, but it could use more subtlety and intricacy. Not nuanced per se.

No yeast character or alcohol comes through. Never soapy. Very clean.

Mf: Crisp, smooth, wet, refreshing, pleasantly biting, and approachable. Oily. Well carbonated, if a bit intentionally overdone to accentuate its bite. Good thickness and body. Nice presence on the palate. Surprisingly soft. Complements the flavour profile well, with some limited custom-tailoring of texture to taste.

Not astringent, harsh, rough, boozy, hot, or gushed.

Dr: Very drinkable for an Imperial IPA. Surly is clearly one of the big dogs when it comes to hoppy beers, and I always dig their deliberate considered hop choices. I'll burn through this 4-pack without any trouble. Perhaps my favourite thanksgiving brew.

High B

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Photo of jeffthecheff
3.68/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark, hazy copper with a yellow tinted white head. The lacing and retention is spot on.

The aroma could use a little bit more strength. It smells fresh, but lacks the "pop" i expect in a DIPA. The hops contribute a clean fruity aroma of grapefruit/general citrus, melon, and pineapple. An interesting, wood and pine spiciness is in the back.

The taste follows with more hops than the nose. It's extremely bitter, and not just on the finish. You can taste the piney, woody hops all the way through, and the bitterness rides along with it. It's nice, but like the aroma, it lacks a fresh pop to it.

Mouthfeel is relatively dry with a high level of carbonation. The bitterness is the only lingering feeling on this beer. I was expecting a bit more from this beer after having Furious, but I still enjoyed it. I'm thinking this beer doesn't hold its freshness as well, so if I try it again, I hope it's right off the canning line.

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Photo of mdvatab
3.69/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 16oz can acquired in trade
Can dated 2/28/11

Aroma: Musky grapefruit, mango, peach nectar, and sweet honey. Fantastic aroma.

Appearance: Hazy orange peach nectar-colored body. Off-white one finger of head disappears relatively quickly. A small amount of lacing sticks to the glass, but less than is ideal.

Flavor: Hop flavors similar to the aromas I noted. Sweet, fruity, maltiness aims to provide balance to the substantial hoppy bitterness. Strong bitterness clings to the tongue through the finish, almost resembling the dry, tannic bitterness of dark chocolate or espresso.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation and medium body. Hops are a bit drying to the tongue/palate

Overall: The name "Abrasive" is definitely fitting! The malt bill tries to make a run at the extreme hop profile, but doesn't stand a chance. A bit too bitter for my liking, but I'm glad to have tried it. Would be interested in trying this one side-by-side w/ Hopslam in February!

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Photo of Soilworker
3.75/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: Poured from a 1 pint 16oz can into a New Belgium globe.

A: Pours a rich coppery amber brown with a one finger thick off-white head.

S: Strong blast of citrusy and fruity hops characterized by an emphasis on grapefruit and perhaps some sweet berry notes. Light floral notes and sweet malts. A very pleasing hoppy nose.

T: Quite hoppy, as one would expect, but still seems to be off-set by a surprisingly sweet maltiness. There is a definite strong grapefruit hopiness but overall I found it too be surprisingly sweet. Finish is a light bitterness on the tongue with some sweet malts and lingering grapefruit-like hops.

M: This one is quite rich and almost chewy. Moderate carbonation going one here, pretty decent.

D: I could maybe get through two of these but not many more than that. Its a double-ipa so one would expect it to be a little tedious on the palate.

Notes: Overall this was a pretty good double-ipa. I was surprised by the sweetness of the drink and that was a bit off-putting to me when coupled with the intense hoppiness: it definitely influenced the drinkability of the beer. In the end I don't think I would buy this one again, for the price ($16 for four cans) it just didn't seem worth it for this double-ipa which didn't particularly 'wow' me in any way.

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Photo of cwguy5
3.75/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Canned 1.23.12. Sampled 3.14.

A - deep, murky orange color with a one-finger light brown head that faded to a bubbly, inconsistent layer; fair amount of spotty lacing

S - hops, floral and light, mostly with some pine and toffee in the background

T - light, resinous pine with a bitter body; light citrus notes that turn sweeter and maltier toward the end

M - extremely fine, almost fizzy carbonation on a light-medium body; long, smooth bittering finish

O - freshness was probably an issue here but a tasty beer anyway; i think the citrus notes from the hops would be brighter closer to canning

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Photo of sweemzander
3.75/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz. can poured into an imperial pint. 0 03 17 A 3 BR printed on the side of the can. Huge thanks to wisconsinality for this one!

(A)- Pours a clear amber color that produced a great off-white head with great retention too. Left plenty of lacing as it dissipated.

(S)- A dry resin-like pine with lemon, lime, pineapple, and grapefruit citrus. A light honey-like sweetness.

(T)- A thinner hop profile than what the smell led me to believe. A maltier/sweeter profile of a honey/pineapple/caramel thing with the hops being an afterthought, but yet present on the finish with a light lemon bitterness.

(M)- A good carbonation level. Much much maltier than I expected. Also, much more sweeter because of the malt profile. The hops are there, but much more subtle than they should be for the style.

(D)- This is good, but far too malty for the style in my opinion. The hop profile is great in the aroma, but in the taste and mouthfeel they are far lacking in presence like they should. Do not get me wrong, I enjoyed this beer, but I was expecting more for the style it is classified under.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.75/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Notes from a few days ago.

My first of the Surly's infamous canned beers. I'm having this right after HopSlam, it's fun to compare 2 beers of the same style (though this was very different.) Canned on 2/28/11, so very fresh at 11 days old.

Pours dark orange with substantial white head eventually turning to a thick ring and slight cap. Leaves some lacing.

Earthy, lemon, piny dank hops...definitely has the 'onion' hops that alot of people connect with Gubna. It does smell very fresh, and it's good, but not my top choice for hops.

Taste is mostly the same. Grapefruit and lemon as far as fruits go, but mostly emphasized on earthy/onion-y hops. Grassy hops as well. Not overly bitter, there is some malt backbone at work, but no obvious flavor from it (maybe some caramel).

Light, smooth mouthfeel pretty similar to HopSlam. Alcohol well-hidden.

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Photo of Onenote81
3.75/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to pochman for this can!

Poured into a tulip glass. Pours a dark amber hue with a thick off-white head on top. Excellent retention; left spotty lacing all over the glass. Big, powerful citrus notes waft out. Lots of pineapple, grapefruit, with a touch of pine needles.

The body on this beer is a disappointment though. Very slick and thin. Expecting a full-bodied beer, the flatness really let me down. Great flavoring of grapefruit, some sweet orange, candied malts (gives it a sweet punch), and a great bitter afterbite. This is a good beer. Tweak that mouth and this is a stellar beer.

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Photo of blakelive784
3.77/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16 fl oz can served in a pilsner glass, reviewed live:

A - Pours a transparent copper/orange color with a decently thick 2 finger head. Retention is surprisingly good given the high abv.

S - Piney and citric hoppy notes play against an ever present caramel malt foundation. The aroma is pungent, but invitingly so.

T - Caramel and a spicy/peppery note open to an almost buttery/bread foundation. The resinous piney notes come through on the climax, and the alcohol finishes a bit sweet. Very well built and balanced.

M - Medium bodied, and bit too smooth. Could stand a bit more carbonation.

D - One of the most masterfully balanced IPA's I've had the pleasure of drinking. If you can, give this one a go.

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Abrasive Ale from Surly Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 885 ratings.