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Abrasive Ale - Surly Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Abrasive AleAbrasive Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,164 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,164
Reviews: 808
rAvg: 4.52
pDev: 8.41%
Wants: 1,964
Gots: 288 | FT: 14
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:
Was "16 Grit Ale," but now available in cans and renamed "Abrasive Ale".

Sure we're abrasive. We were abrasive long before we were Surly. If you visit the brewery you can still see remnants of industrial manufacturing factory Omar's parents ran for 35 years within those same 4 walls. Bandsaw blades, grinding wheels, and a sanding discs came long before ales and lagers. But let's be honest, this is a lot more fun. Pale in color, this over-hopped, under-brewed Double IPA has almost twice the amount of hops & malt crammed in the can.

(Beer added by: Buebie on 12-27-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,164 | Reviews: 808 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of argock
4.31/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16oz tallboy can into an oversized wineglass. Canned on date of 030413 on bottom of can. SIngle pruchased by my brother Greg from a Minneapolis area bottle shop for $4.

A: Amber-orange with rocky, 2-finger off-white big-bubbled head with decent retention and several layers of lacing.

S: The hop aroma jumps from the glass, detectable from 2-3 feet or so. Mango, pineapple, and passionfruit, a tropical fruit punch like aroma without the sugary sweetness. There is some grapefruit, pine, and resin too, but the fruity aromas win out. The malt component is pretty bland and background, as it shoudl be with a little bit of crackery malt character.

T: The flavor is a hair below the aroma in quality, but not enough to knock it down to the next score. The fruity hops assault continues with lashing pineapple, mango, pine, and grapefruit. The bitterness is more than I would have imagined and sneaks up on you throughout the can with a more resiney quality that grows to almost take over the flavor profile by the end. The malt component is again fairly simple with some light grain and cracker notes. I don't get any yeast character. The bitterness level is high.

M: The attenuation on this beer is so high, it drink too light to me -- there should be a little bit of lush malt body to match up, otherwise the bitterness and resiney qualities, which I like but with some balance, tend to take over. I think Abrasive pushes it without missing, but I would love to see a little more body -- it comes off a near-watery at points. The carbonation is understandably medium, but maybe it should even be a little lower to keep any astringency from poking through.

O: I really liked Surly Abrasive ale and was psyched to get a chance to try it. I don't think it is quite as good as some of the top-shelf, hop-forward DIPAs like PtE (which while dry still has some malt slickness to it), Hopslam (also dry from the honey but still with more heft than Abrasive), or Maharaja (which has come off as a little sweet in the past but was great this year). If they ramped up the mouthfeel a tad to give a little more body, this would be a top 10 DIPA. Still a great beer and definitely worth seeking out.

argock, Apr 08, 2013
Photo of DaftCaskBC
3.23/5  rDev -28.5%
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.

DaftCaskBC, Apr 08, 2013
Photo of atone315
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

atone315, Apr 07, 2013
Photo of HopChef44
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

HopChef44, Apr 07, 2013
Photo of AverageWhiteGuy
4/5  rDev -11.5%

AverageWhiteGuy, Apr 07, 2013
Photo of randylangford
4.25/5  rDev -6%

randylangford, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of IHyphySF
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%

IHyphySF, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of DaltonK
5/5  rDev +10.6%

DaltonK, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of Mnmaverick
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%

Mnmaverick, Apr 05, 2013
Photo of polopaul20
5/5  rDev +10.6%

polopaul20, Apr 05, 2013
Photo of hiphopj5
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

hiphopj5, Apr 05, 2013
Photo of xmorgan
4.2/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 1

This is a very tasty west coast type IPA, I found it a very tasty beer. I enjoyed using the can for beer can chicken and unless I can find this beer on tap I will only use it when making a very hoppy beer can chicken and drink the left over of the 4 pack.

The appearance was first rate with a nice lacing when poured from the can into a glass.

The smell had a significant hoppyness and was as flowery as one would expect from a Great Douple IPA, however great IPAs are not from a can.

The taste was full and hppy and was as good as one would expect from a beer from a can.

I rate this beer a 5 in all catogories exept overall as it is in a can.

No amount of plastic lining in a can can compensate for a bottled beer.

I really want to like this beer and the brewery, but I can get as good or better beers in glass. I know cans are better for recycling, but anything is better in glass then cans. I would pay more for glass then cans, and craft beer is best in a bottle or a keg. NEVER a can.

xmorgan, Apr 05, 2013
Photo of Hessian257
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%

Hessian257, Apr 05, 2013
Photo of Lantern
4.25/5  rDev -6%

Lantern, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of MCain04
4.46/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From a trade with StPaulSuds, thanks for the fresh 4pack brotha. Canned exactly 1 month ago, poured into an oversized Mikasa Tulip glass.

A: Hazy orange body with a thick, creamy 2+ finger head of creamsicle color, awesome retention and lacing.

S: Very aromatic, nice blend of a sweet malty backing with a hop medley that is mostly tropical fruits, mango, and peaches, with some citrus and a touch of pine.

T: Quite bitter from start to finish with a lingering bitterness on the aftertaste. Could have a little more hop flavor to it. You can tell theres a large malt backbone but it doesn't suffer from being overly sweet. Easy-drinking and hides the alcohol very well.

M: Definitely a high point with this brew. Into elite category with a medium to full body and creamy mouthfeel that makes each sip close to perfect.

O: Definitely an elite DIPA, and especially for the bitter-seekers. The mouthfeel makes it for me, it could be near perfect if the hop flavor was more present in the taste as it is in the nose. Definitely enjoyed though.

MCain04, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of BeerMeBrah
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%

BeerMeBrah, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of DCgolfpro
4.25/5  rDev -6%

DCgolfpro, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of Andrew61923
4.69/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My last can from my trading partner and I'm sad to see it go. Canned 1/17/13. Poured into Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a golden orange with a finger's worth of white head that takes its time dissipating into a thin halo with some superficial film on top. Nothing groundbreaking, but certainly solid.

S: Holy citrus. A ton of grapefruit and tropical fruits. This is one of my favorite smelling beers ever.

T: The taste mirrors the aroma. For a hoppy beer that's 75 days old, this has retained many of its original qualities. Fantastic.

M: There is no way I'd be able to pick up on the 9% ABV if I hadn't looked at the can first. Unbelievably drinkable and the delicious hoppiness lingers, inviting the drinker to have sip after sip.

O: On my Untappd check-in, I said "I will miss this beer" and it's true. I've had a few different offerings from Surly and have enjoyed them all, but Abrasive is definitely my favorite. Would love to try it on tap someday. Drink it if you can.

Andrew61923, Apr 04, 2013
Photo of AndyP612
5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap served in a pint from The Blue Door Pub reviewed from notes.

A- Nice fluffy one finger worth of head that lingered long. Great lacing and retention.

S- Hops bite your nose with citrus and tropical fruit hints.

T- Follows as the nose leads with citrus fruit punch and lingering pineapple and grapefruit.

M- Lacks the syrupy feeling common in DIPA/IIPAs and not overly thick. Finishes very dry an attribute I love in the abrasive when compared to others brewed under the same manner.

O- I wrote in my notes "Perfect" but this was not my first pint on this particular occasion but still rings pretty true. I love this ale. The bitterness hide the reasonably high abv Abrasive offers which needs to be taken into account since after only one or two is plenty for the consumer. The fact that this particular establishment served the Abrasive in pints and not smaller pours also could get people into trouble. Cheers.

AndyP612, Apr 03, 2013
Photo of Lurkerson
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%

Lurkerson, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of mweso2000
5/5  rDev +10.6%

mweso2000, Apr 02, 2013
Photo of mklisz
4/5  rDev -11.5%

mklisz, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of Jeremy6566
4.75/5  rDev +5.1%

Jeremy6566, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of Rainblows
4.25/5  rDev -6%

Rainblows, Apr 01, 2013
Photo of VeganUndead
4.25/5  rDev -6%

VeganUndead, Apr 01, 2013
Abrasive Ale from Surly Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 3,164 ratings.