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Halcyon - Thornbridge Brewery

HalcyonHalcyon

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

134 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 134
Reviews: 54
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 9.85%


Brewed by:
Thornbridge Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: mdagnew on 03-30-2009)
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Ratings: 134 | Reviews: 54 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of CwrwAmByth
CwrwAmByth

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased from Discount Supermarket and poured into a pint glass.
Pours a light colden colour with a white head with quite good lacing around the glass.
Smells faintly hoppy.
Tastes strongly hoppy.
Overall a lovely ipa, hoppy but well balanced and refreshingly tasty.

Serving type: bottle

02-29-2012 23:19:53 | More by CwrwAmByth
Photo of Zimbo
Zimbo

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spiky bitter nose in the bottle with some sweet grapefruit. Very pale slightly off clear light yellow. Easy one inch plus head. Slightly carbonic, nice light flavour but a bit dead across the palate and could do with some more depth. Good mouthfeel, herbally bitterness on the tongue from the onset which follows all the way to the end. Doesn't balance out perfectly when it finishes though. Could do with a bit more oomph and intensity for an Imperial IPA.Despite being a let down here and there I do quite like it. Sure wouldn't say no to another.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2012 20:04:15 | More by Zimbo
Photo of dedrinker
dedrinker

Kansas

4.53/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A lighter straw golden color that surprised me a little.

A fruity biscuity aroma - stone fruits, citrus etc.

A fruity malty taste of tangerine, marmalade and scones, the hops lend a citrusy resinous character, but not in a dominant sense rather a supporting and amplifying of the fruity malt character.

Medium body - perhaps a bit more, but such texture and flavor; subtle yet rich and assertive in a non-American way. Didn't taste like no American IPA to me.

Loved it. Cask condition had a lot to do with it too I suppose.

Serving type: cask

01-31-2012 04:31:38 | More by dedrinker
Photo of jazzyjeff13
jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

4.43/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of Aug 2012. ABV stated as 7.4%. Picked up from my local beer specialist. Described on the label as an imperial IPA.

Poured into a tulip pint glass. A bright golden-yellow with medium carbonation and faint sediment (looks like chill haze to me). Yields a large head of brilliant white foam that lasts for a minute or so before subsiding. An intense hoppy aroma bursting with fruity notes; white grapes, grapefruit and melon, along with hints of citrus. A whiff of malt in the background. Strangely, the overall effect is reminiscent of mature farmhouse cheddar - bizarre but not unpleasant!

Tastes of subtle malt with intense aromatic hops and a crisp bitter finish. Notes of tropical fruit, grapes, citrus and melon. Pretty dry; a hint of solvent upon swallowing. Again, there is a background quality that reminds me of mature cheddar (weird!). Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and dry, with good body. Somewhat astringent. Aftertaste of fruity aromatic hops.

Lovely, even with the strange cheese effect. A fantastically aromatic IPA, with tons of fruity notes taking centre stage. The ABV goes virtually unnoticed - impressive for a 7.4% brew. Subtle malt and good attenuation take this close to perfection. Highly drinkable and highly recommended. Get one now!

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2012 23:52:17 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of kylehay2004
kylehay2004

Florida

3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single finger head with nice lacing on a clear straw and golden body. Nice toast, cream soda and floral aroma. Flavor is more on the creamy side with mild hop flavor and citrus. Honey and floral notes are nice as well. Light body for the style and moderate carbonation. Overall a good beer and would definitely get again.

Serving type: on-tap

01-19-2012 01:48:52 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of Reagan1984
Reagan1984

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on cask at the Great Lost Bear in Portland, ME.

Wasn’t sure what to expect, but boy it was Awesome. So surprised by the American IPA notes, since this is from the U.K.

Nice tight finger of creamy head that left sheets of lace. Light amber to a golden/amber color with a slight haze.

Bright, fresh citrus/grapefruit aroma with light toasty malt hints.

Flavor is incredibly bready with a wonderful fresh grapefruit pith hop feel. Slightly oily from the aggressive hop notes.

Creamy awedsome feel. Lighter body

Planned on having one and moving onto something else. I never did, I stuck with this as it was fantastic.

Serving type: cask

01-15-2012 16:31:48 | More by Reagan1984
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

2.88/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I had this on cask at Max's. Poured into a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear golden with a layer of fluffy white carbonation that to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet, picking up the malt up front. Reminds me a lot of sparkling grape juice.

Taste: Bready malt with some very grassy hops. The sparkling grape juice from the smell is still there. Not very bitter.

Mouthfeel: The body is thin with tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This is a very different beer. It really reminded me of sparkling grape juice. I wouldn't have another.

Serving type: cask

12-11-2011 13:15:03 | More by oline73
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's.

The beer pours a solid gold color with good head retention and considerable lacing. Really am not picking up very much on the nose... maybe some light grains, light dry citrus and a hint of leafy tobacco. The flavor profile is more of the same, except I do get some nice bitterness in this dry IPA. This beer is fairly light on its feet, and the beer has a clean, fairly bitter finish. The beer is well balanced, and it does seem to have a bit more hoppy bitterness than what I normally encouter in a Brit IPA. One thing I will say... the alcohol is well disguised in this beer, and it does not drink like a 7.7% abv. beer. That being said, my understanding is that this level of alcohol is fairly unusual in a brit IPA (it's high), and I notice that almost all the reviews for this beer are from consumers in the colonies. Makes me wonder if this beer wasn't made specifically for the US market.

Serving type: on-tap

11-19-2011 19:08:32 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of johnnnniee
johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On cask at Nerax North
Pours a light clear golden color with a thinnish white head that actually shows some retention. Smells of hops, yeah! Fruity bready honey malts back us up, but this one is firmly rooted in the hop camp. Taste is barely bready and sweet with fruity citrus and earthy hop flavors all screaming for attention. 7.7% abv is nowhere to be found. Medium body and level of carbonation with a slick resinous mouthfeel. This might be my favorite beer from the fest, or maybe it isn't, but its certainly in the running.

Serving type: cask

11-12-2011 06:53:44 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of gatornation
gatornation

Minnesota

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

from a 500 ml bottle with 2 year old hop for a harvest ipa i had to try this one

A- pours a nice light copper color with a 1 finger off-white head some nice lacing and a fresh collar

S-Mmm smell is hops both floral and citrus a touch of pine,sweet caramel malts and bread

T- follows the nose lots of floral and and some bitter pine hops,offset with some citrus hops and sweet caramel.wet grass a little lemon and baked bread

M- prickly ,crisp,a touch bitter with hops carbonation is medium+ a clean finish with a definite hop bite

O- 2 year old hops in a harvest ipa?..this one works and is very good

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2011 21:48:36 | More by gatornation
Photo of Cyberkedi
Cyberkedi

Georgia

3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is not quite as hoppy as I expected, but it is citrusy, mainly lemon, and just slightly sweet - and rather appealing. It pours a slightly hazy golden yellow with a very thick, fine-bubbled, rather persistent white head that leaves some respectable lacing. Flavor is fairly hoppy, scarcely bitter, with an undertone of citrus that is mainly lemon and grapefruit but not too sour. Texture is smooth yet lively, leaving a nice hoppy tingle.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2011 04:10:37 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First Thornbridge beer I've managed to get a hold of besides their Antipodean collaborations with Epic and Mountain Goat. Picked this one up from K&L Wine Merchants in Redwood City, CA.

Opens with a hiss, and immediately a wafting aroma of hops comes out of the bottle. The beer is a very pale and slightly hazy straw yellow colour, with a persistent and frothy head of white. Lacing is excellent. Body looks thin, but that's not that bad in this style. I have to say I'm looking forward to drinking this beer.

Nose is indeed fresh, green and hoppy, giving a noticeable crushed leaf aroma to the expected notes of citrus skin and fruit. Very sharp characters, for the most part, certainly at the zest and green end of the hop spectrum, but that's no bad thing.

Taste is far more subdued, which I often find in fresh-hopped beers. Despite the sharpness on the nose, here there's very little true hop bitterness, more of that slightly organic spread of hop essence over the entire palate. Light malt does just enough to balance, although without the expected sharp vector of bitterness, it does feel surprisingly sweet.

Feel is smooth but light and slick. Goes very nicely with the mild hop character.

A very drinkable and very refreshing brew, and one which shows a good deal of craft. I always thing green- or wet-hopped ales have something to offer, and this is probably one of the better examples I've had. Thornbridge, it seems, doesn't just do great collaborations.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2011 02:21:21 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of DoubleSimcoe
DoubleSimcoe

New York

4.47/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thornbridge Halcyon "Green Hopped IPA 2009 Harvest", 500-ml bottle bought at Best Yet Market in Harlem, NYC, for $8.99.

"Hops harvested in 2009 and bottled in April 2010". Bottle bought on April 2 2011. I was way too curious about this beer not to buy it. For once, I have never seen it before. Besides that, the fact that they are so proud of a "Fresh Hop IPA" that is, however, two years old made me giddy with curiosity and excitement.

Appearance: Served in my Sierra snifter, pours thick and yummy, with a huge, frothy snow-white head reminiscent of a Belgian beer (saison, mostly). Good retention and decent lacing. Color is dirty apple juice, hazy amber. This looks good, but definitely not like an IPA!

Smell: Totally Belgian, with lots of yeast and sour apple invading the nose right away. Some lemon juice. Spice. Again, this is a saison!

Taste: Sourness, tartness. Clove, spice. More yeast, some breadiness. Sweet, fruity notes and prickly hops, but so different from the hops you expect in an American IPA! I keep thinking of Ommegang Hennepin, and maybe of a quality German Hefeweizen.

Mouthfeel: High carbonation, full flavor, medium body. Refreshing, not too filling. Again, not an IPA here, but damn delicious!! Finishes bitter, with a carbonated bite that lingers.

Overall: Funny enough, this has got the same ABV as Hennepin, and both are immensely drinkable, refreshing and enjoyable. If you see this at your local shop and feel antsy about buying an "old" IPA, fear not. This is not really an IPA, it has aged well and it is stunning. I'm glad I bought it!!

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2011 05:51:28 | More by DoubleSimcoe
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thornbridge, is a superior quality brewery, and this effort is a very good IPA. Orange coloured body with a bit of white head. A hoppy aroma that yields a good hoppyness. I get the dry hops, it is a satisfying brew. Perhaps a bit average mouthfeel and drinkability. From Premiere. Well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2011 00:48:42 | More by Sammy
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

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

Very cloudy, orange amber color. Good starting head that leaves a lot of blanketing lace.

Hop flower aroma with a mild malt background.

Nice malty start. Interestingly, the hop stays muted until the swallow. The aftertaste is good blend, tipping the scale on the hop side. The body is rich and the carbonation is low. There is very little alcohol on the tongue.

Overall, this is a solid IPA that is deceptively easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2011 23:25:13 | More by smcolw
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

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

Bottle from Pizzeria Paradiso in Alexandria, Virginia.

A: This beer appears a hazy, straw yellow hue with an inch of fluffy, white head.

S: Hops, citrus, subtle malt, alcohol.

T: A decent harvest ale with nice citrus flavors, backed by a sturdy malt bill.

M: Medium body with a solid level of carbonation present. A warming sensation with subtle alcohol notes is present in the finish.

D: A tasty beer that I enjoyed and would not mind having again.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2010 19:19:57 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of CHickman
CHickman

New York

4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 Harvest: Pours cloudy light orange in color with a 1 finger creamy white head that faded slow and left great lacing. The head was very thick and creamy, and lasted quite a while.

Smells of huge hops, floral hops, citrus hops and piney hops, with caramel, sweet malt, flowers, grass, light grains, light yeast, and a hint of spices like pepper and coriander. The hops dominate the aroma, but there are plenty of earthy notes mixed in this smell.

Tastes like it smells, with floral hops, citrus hops, caramel, sweet malt, grass, grapefruiy, light yeast, spices, coriander and maybe some orange peel; slight bitterness to it, but it was subtle and didn't take away from the flavor.

Mouthfeel is creamy and almost oily, smooth and airy with light carbonation, a medium body and a sweet semi-dry finish. Really tasty IPA that goes down smooth and easy. Too expensive to drink all the time, but this beer was a treat.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2010 05:16:14 | More by CHickman
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aromas are quite inviting indeed with notes of cut grass, citrus, pine, and limes; quite complex indeed.

The tastes are delicious as well. Starts with light caramel malts and then the hops steal the show. Citrusy and earthy hops all over the place with the main flavors of orange and lime. These are all held together by honey undertones from the malts. The bitterness is apparent towards the end, and lingers in the aftertaste, but in a pleasant way.

Overall this a is superb English/American IPA. Not sure it warrants the inflated price tag but there is a superb balance between the hops and the malts here, making drinkability high and in the end making it worth it I guess.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2010 14:12:30 | More by claspada
Photo of Monkeyknife
Monkeyknife

Missouri

3.58/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a cloudy lemon yellow with two fingers of bright white head.

Hoppy aroma of pine resin, green grass, and tangerine along with a bit of maltiness. High hopes for this one based on the aroma.

A surprising taste upfront of lemon, candy sugar, and medicinal herbs which I hadn't expected from an American IPA. Finishes with a medicinal maltiness.

Lighter bodied and dry with a fizzy carbonation.

I'm not sure this is what I'd call an American IPA. Honestly, I'm not sure what to call it...though it it is quite interesting.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2010 21:11:41 | More by Monkeyknife
Photo of nick76
nick76

Florida

3.33/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is grassy, and malty with licorice and a touch of citrus. The appearance is hazy amber gold with particulates and an average head. The taste is like the aroma. The palate is average for the style. Overall this is drinkable but not a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2010 23:46:13 | More by nick76
Photo of Cresant
Cresant

Kentucky

3.25/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served this 500 mL brown bottle in a Sam Adams glass. Bottled April 2010. The body was orange with a distinct green hue. Hazy with a thin white head that stayed and left some lacing too.

The smell was floral hops and pennies. Green and leafy. The label says Target hops were used.

The taste was green and resinous. Not sharp but raw. Hard candy-like tartness. Evergreen. Understated caramel malts. This is a good UK take on the American IPA style. Interesting. I would drink it again except for the price ($8.49).

The mouthfeel was medium bodied with some slipperiness. Adequately carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2010 21:05:02 | More by Cresant
Photo of crossovert
crossovert

Illinois

3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle, says it was bottled in april. So it is probably jsut nearing the end of it being worthy. TBH I didn't see it on the shelf until recently.

It pours a slightly hazy golden color with a hint of orange. The head is Foamy and off white and leaves some really nice lacing.

Unfortunately they used target. It smells good but not great, still has a decent smell that has lasted. There is a decent amount of malt in here too. Sorry I'm being ambiguous here but the hops don't speak to me.

Again in the flavor the hops are good but not great. It has a decent floral character with some pine and a moderate bitterness. The malt does level the hops a bit but it is a nice balance.

The mouthfeel was a tad bit watery.

Overall it is a decent IPA, nothing special, mainly hindered by the hop selection imo, but it is well-crafted.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2010 04:13:08 | More by crossovert
Photo of wl0307
wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(2009 Harvest) Purchased at the RAIB stall, GBBF 2010; bottle-conditioned in a slim 500ml brown bottle, BB 17/10/2010, served cool in a straight imperial pint glass. NOTE: the back label describes this vintage using Target hops in the late-hopping - don't know if this element is different every year?

A: dark yellow-ish golden in colour, translucent (I tried to avoid the yeast sediments during the pour), coming with healthy streams of small- & mid-sized fizz and topped with a well-lasting white cottony foamy head.
S: pronounced aroma of fruitiness dominates the nose along with a semi-assertive dose of sour-nectar or fermented pineapple-ish yeasts, hinting at very clean & sour-ish honey, sweet citrus, floral cordial, kiwi-fruit and goose-berry like berry fruits. Hop resins do no manifest themselves in the same way as American counterparts, actually being balanced off a bit by the yeasty elements. The very pale-coloured malts come understated, making up only secondary aroma in the balance. But I think the yeasty intervention somehow disturbs the preferable balance, making it unnecessarily sour-ish overall.
T: superior to the nose, the semi-lubricating and mildly effervescent swallow of citrus, light pears and unripe lychee-fruits comes pretty clean, treading lightly on a soft platform of aromatic pale malts; gradually, a wave of citrus-peel-ish tannins and chewy mouthfeel expands and occupies the rear of the tongue, not without more fruit tannins at play. Not aggressively bitter or hoppy as one might expect from an AIPA, the aftertaste seems to be aiming for some kind of a harmony b/w fresh hop aroma, tannins, deeper hop bitterness and lingering undertones of lovely pale malts, which I think has been achieved elegantly. The second pour includes the yeasty remnants in the bottle, rendering a slightly fuller mouthfeel with pleasantly spicy undertone.
M&D: very well bottle-conditioned, the mouthfeel is refreshing, not at all overly fizzy but lively enough to skilfully lift the weight (7.7%abv.). The body is around medium to me, as it's so easy to drink, not for a second does it require a pause. I think this green-hopped ale is still in the tradition of British IPA, using British hops and carefully crafted+presented with a balance in mind. The overall performance would be better if the sour-ish elements on the nose could be skilfully balanced off, though.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2010 18:55:44 | More by wl0307
Photo of SteveDavies
SteveDavies

United Kingdom (England)

4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle-Conditioned 50cl bottle from The Beer Emporium, Sandbach. Poured into a Moors Beer glass. Spot on clear, pale orangey colour, light carbonation, light foamy head that cleared to light lacing. Hops dominate the aroma with orangey, citrus explosions - I love it. The taste is an experience, wow! hoppy, hoppy. The green target hops really make the difference for me. The dry bitterness is just right balance for this strength IPA. Mouthfeel is a full-bodied joy, the hop content hits straight away leaving a craving for more. For such a strong IPA I found myself drinking rather too quickly as the flavours developed and taste buds demanded more! Definitely up there as one of my current favourites

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2010 16:31:32 | More by SteveDavies
Photo of OttoBomb
OttoBomb

Illinois

3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle poured into Dogfish Head signature glass (August 2, 2010). The rear label states "Hops harvested in 2009 and bottled in April 2010"

Eyes: It pours a very hazy amber-yellow. Much brighter and hazier than many IPAs. A vigorous pour creates fluffy white head that almost overflows the rim. Three fingers easy with significant lacing.

Nose: I'm not sure if my bottle is different from those of other reviewers, but the nose is extremely tame. Some pine and citrus evident but quite muted.

Tongue: An impressive hop kick starts each sip, and forebodes a bitter palate assault, but the bitterness surprisingly fades on the tail. Much more flavorful than the nose, herbal citruses, and some pine.

Mouth: Good carbonation and feel.

Libation: I like this beer, but I'm left a bit confused. It's quite drinkable, nicely smooth for the style, and the flavor profile isn't overwhelmed by bitterness or alcohol. That said, what the beer does have going for it (flavor & mouth feel), isn't fantastic. All in all I liked it, but based on the odd appearance, aroma, and flavor profiles I think I'll have to revisit this one to make a final decision on it.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2010 20:43:56 | More by OttoBomb
Halcyon from Thornbridge Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 134 ratings.