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Kipling - Thornbridge Brewery


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206 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 206
Reviews: 101
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 11.69%

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

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: soulgrowl on 01-24-2010)
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Ratings: 206 | Reviews: 101 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Pencible


2.45/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A: This poured a clear straw with quickly dissipating white head and chunky sediment.
S: It smelled like skunky lager yeast and faint citrus hops.
T: It tasted like watery citrus and pine hops, with some skunky later yeast. It had a somewhat dirty bitter aftertaste.
M: It was thin with lots of carbonation. Very bubbly body.
D: This was a poor brew. The scent and taste and body were all far below average. It didn't even look good. Not very easy to drink either, almost a drain pour.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2014 21:03:53 | More by Pencible
Photo of BradC


4.66/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Pours a golden yellow with two fingers of pillowy head that eventually falls. Lots of lacing.

Great aroma, light fruity hoppy smell

Taste starts out a little sweet and then the fruity hops come in, some bready malt and then a light bitter finish.

Medium bodied and moderate carbonation makes this real easy drinking.

Overall a great session-able pale ale that's not super bitter. The Nelson Sauvin hops give it a nice fruity bitterness. Glad this was recommended to me.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2014 00:49:09 | More by BradC
Photo of BeerDrinker01

United Kingdom (England)

3.94/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle served in a goblet glass chilled from the fridge!

Pours light golden white foam head medium body with moderate carbonation, Citrus, Tropical fruits, Floral, Pine Hops, With a good bitterness, Hoppy finish. Very clean well balanced crisp refreshing beer from thornbridge!

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2014 14:31:08 | More by BeerDrinker01
Photo of Ozzylizard


3.68/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Undated bottle at cellar temp into goblet.
Aroma light hoppiness like flowers
Head small (2 cm), white, frothy, mostly lasting
Lacing OK, making thick rings as the level drops.
Body is light yellowish orange, hazy (chill haze?)
Taste begins slightly bitter with only a trace of diacetyl, no hint of malt, slight flowery hoppiness. Ends with only astringency.
Body is light and watery with lively carbonation.

Overall, an OK ale, looks pretty good in the glass, no overwhelming malt or hops, well-balanced. Not sure what makes this a "South Pacific style pale ale".

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2014 23:52:34 | More by Ozzylizard
Photo of ThisWangsChung


3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

16.9 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear straw color - I can immediately tell this doesn't have much malt to it. The head is a frothy two finger white shade. The retention is solid and some decent (if inconsistent) lacing is left behind. Pretty good looking.

S: This does a good job of showing off Nelson hops, and it's not even uber fresh! Notes of pine, lemon, grape skin, and some tropical fruits come through quite well. Not much of a malt backbone comes through in the nose. Some slight soapiness detracts, but otherwise this is a solid hoppy aroma.

T: Hop flavor hits the palate immediately. Tropical fruit, some grapefruit, and slight herbal qualities are the main notes provided here. The finish isn't soapy at all, with only a mild, non-intrusive sweetness; actually, it's even a little juicy. The problem here isn't the flavor...it's the lack of flavor. While it is VERY pleasant and VERY balanced (I'm impressed how they hid the bitterness with such a feeble malt backbone), it's sadly too unassuming for its own good. Actually, you know what, I don't care...this just gets better and better the more I drink it. It's delicate and subtle in all the right places.

M: This is so light and crisp its unbelievable. I'm just killing this like it's nothing. The soft yet impressive carbonation is definitely helping it here - and there's just enough of a dry finish to help it even further.

O: If the flavor was 'bigger' so to speak, it would kill many 'Murican-brewed pale ales stone dead. Still, this is more-or-less everything I want from the style. What a shame it's so expensive...

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2013 00:46:58 | More by ThisWangsChung
Photo of FLima


4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy golden color with apparent carbonation and a thick head with good retention that leaves some laces.
Predominant aroma of fresh grapes with hints of passion fruit flowers, honey and biscuit malt.
Flavor of sweet malt balanced with fruity hops with notes of green grapes, coriander, passion fruit, ginger, guaraná, citrus and pineapple. Dry aftertaste with an elegant bitterness, a bit acid.
Medium body with adequate natural carbonation with tiny bubbles.
I was embezzled with the first Kipling I had tried a while ago. This one wasn't that fresh so it suffered a bit, especially in the aroma. Still it is a beer full of elegance, assertive, balanced to perfection, and refreshing even at room temperature, with a huge drinkability. Nelson Sauvin hops are clearly noticeable here.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2013 23:45:35 | More by FLima
Photo of ssmack

Ontario (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle.

A hazy straw brown colour. 2 inches of foamy head with a lunar landscape.

The aroma is musty yeast.

The taste of white bread. Mild malt. The hops taste is complex - oregano, citrus, lemon, grapefruit.

A light feel but a nice bite.

A refreshing, light, balanced ale but nothing spectacular.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2013 01:29:07 | More by ssmack
Photo of eduardolinhalis


4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle served in a pint glass.

Best before 14.08.2014. Brewed with Nelson Sauvin NZ hops.

A: Pours a crystal clear pale yellow color forming a huge, solid, creamy, thin bubbled, fizzy white head. Good retention and lots of soapy lacings formed and left in the glass

S: Excellent bouquet of hops in the nose. Very herby and piny hops. Notes of pale sweet malts. A bit earthy yeasts. A bit fruity too with notes of tropical fruits released by the hops

T: Slightly sweet upfront. Sweet pale malts. Classic British Maris Otter crispy malts mixed with the very tropical fruity profile of Nelson Sauvin. A winner combination. Well, in overall, a dry and crispy beer. Good balanced hops bitterness

M: Light yo medium body. Smooth. Good carbonation and a Maris Otter mixed witb herby snd grassy hops aftertaste

O: Excellent drinkability. Great British Ale with a strong American profile

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2013 23:13:08 | More by eduardolinhalis
Photo of flyingpig

United Kingdom (Scotland)

4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500ml Bottle from Utobbeer, Borough Market, London (£3.49):
Light golden colour with a two-fingers sized head that is a foamy white and holds very well.

Strong pine & slightly floral hops with a very juicy aroma that also features some citrus and grapefruit.

Bitter pine and grapefruit hops with citrus and a juicy, almost tropical fruit taste that is backed up with some mango and passion fruit. Very juicy and refreshing with some lemon & a very slight touch of malts.

Refreshing & bitter as expected with a juicy, wet taste that is full of citrus giving the beer a nice tang on the tongue. The beer is medium on the palate and the carbonation is about the same.

An excellent beer & great example of an American pale ale that is quite refreshing and goes down a treat with a solid bitter flavour and plenty of pine hops shining through. A great beer and one that I'd have again given the chance.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2013 09:10:26 | More by flyingpig
Photo of lacqueredmouse


4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle purchased from Slowbeer in Melbourne. Drank with @tobeerornottobe.

Pours a brilliantly clear yellow colour, with a reasonably frothy head of pure white. This settles down to a film, taking on a slightly greyish tone as it does so. Lacing is tight. Looks very good. Love the clarity in the body.

Nose is also very good indeed. Big fresh, sweet, slightly tropical hop characters, which give off pineapple, papaya and guava, with a slightly crisper, greener tone as well—perhaps fresh squeezed lime. Under it is a grainy substrate, a fairly neutral but also fairly bland underpinning. But the hops win here.

On the palate is where the bland basis makes more of an impact. Light clean entry gives a pleasant echo of fruitiness, before the back empties out. This isn't entirely bad: it's light and crisp and exceptionally quaffable as a result. But there's certainly less flavour than there could have been, in the aftertaste are reminiscences of fruitiness, a slight candy tingle slightly fragrant with a vacant acidity. It's quite pleasant.

Feel is light and crisp: very well suited indeed to the beer as a whole.

Despite some choices made in its construction, this is a very good beer, and even a very enjoyable and interesting one. If I complain about it having less flavour than it should, then it's almost certainly just a reflection on me rather than the beer. This is expertly made, extremely well crafted, and just drinkable as hell. Good stuff.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 02:21:04 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of CrazyDavros


3.6/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours gold with a fading head.
Nose shows passion-fruit, lychee, cookie dough-like malt, some grassy and spicy hops.
Very hoppy flavours, spicy and grassy notes along with a hint of pine. Not much malt underneath although there is a biscuity character.
Body feels a bit watery.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2013 02:57:38 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of dwren89


2.63/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Appearance: great clarity, pale gold color, frothy white head,

Aroma: Exploding citrus aroma of grapefruit, orange, and a tinge of kiwi, white wine like dry/citrus aroma (Nelson Sauvin hop), soft almost undetectable pilsner malt biscuitiness

Taste: Definite bitter finish and citrusy twinge of the grapefruit/orange/kiwi aroma, no real malt flavor comes through

Mouthfeel: light, crisp, moderately low carbonation, light body
Overall Impression: A nice beer to kick back and drink in the sun on a hot day, as it does quench thirst fairly well, but definitely lacking in body and overall “umph.” I was disappointed by the lack of taste after such a fantastic nose. Advertised as having “initial sweetness” and “medium body”, but I find it to be definitively lacking in both of those areas. It drinks very watery.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2013 21:18:09 | More by dwren89
Photo of heygeebee


4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5

From Slowbeer. BB 02/14.

A- clear straw/gold, two finger head.

S - tropical, passionfruit, mango, and some earthy hops.

T - integrated English meets New World pale ale with tropical notes, citrus, lychee, earthy hop bite.

M - a little over-carbonated

O- Great beer, well made, and despite not being an extreme beer, you could drink all night. As usual with Thornbrisdge, unsure whther to drink at English temp, or New World temp. Went for middle ground, seemed to work.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2013 07:59:01 | More by heygeebee
Photo of Bitterbill


4.01/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A- pours a cloudy colour of apricot, very small head of foam, doesn't leave much lacing.

S- aromas of tropical fruit, some sweetness and citrus.

T- tarts with tropical fruitiness and sweet malt and bread, gets a bitter mid palate and in the finish with some lemon and grapefruit. Pretty balanced and flavourful..yeah, I'm a fan of Nelson Suavin hops, and Thornbridge did a good job with them here.

M- medium bodied, rather light with the carbonation, good mouthfeel.

O- a tasty 5.2% abv brew that's easy drinking and quite enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2013 13:02:56 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of KTCamm

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Discovered on tap at The Little Pub in Ridgefield CT.

Pours yellow, dark and cloudy. Fluffy white foam that is clingy. Fruity passion fruit nose. Malty too. Quite peppy. Smooth full tasty fruit tones, firm hop. Smooth throughout. Leaves a pleasant follow through taste. Surprisingly really good,.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2013 22:41:02 | More by KTCamm
Photo of ngeunit1


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

A - Hazy golden-yellow with a finger of frothy white head.

S - Caramel and biscuit malts, citrus, pine, and floral hops, English yeast.

T - Sweet caramel and biscuit malts, grapefruit, citrus, pine, and floral hops, slightly resiny bitterness, English yeast, lemon zest.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet, lightly bitter finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice balanced hoppy English Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2013 07:41:26 | More by ngeunit1
Photo of tbeckett

Ontario (Canada)

3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From old notes.

A - Poured with a light golden colour and a two finger fluffy white head. Bright. Very carbonation, good thick lace rings and a half finger of retention.

S - Light fruits, very tropical, mango, crackers.

T - Fruit juices, tropical fruit, some nice sugary fruit sweetness. Mango, grass, juicy sweet fruits up front then a deeper flavour in the back.

M - Decent bite in the finish, good carbonation but maybe a bit much, light to medium body.

O/D - Nice and fruity. Shows off Nelson well. Light and easy to drink, yet flavourful and complex.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2013 14:36:22 | More by tbeckett
Photo of rhoadsrage


4.23/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer has a slightly hazy lemon yellow body with a big bubbly dish soap head of white.

S- The clean papery green hops have a nice green lemon aroma to follow

T- The green papery English hops are followed by a gentle green herbal hop flavor that lingers as a nice mellow pungency with no real bitterness.

M- The medium mouthfeel is smooth with no alcohol heat

O- The fresh easy drinking beer has great hop flavor but the malt and yeast profile are pretty well hidden. It still very drinkable and would be lovely as a British pint instead of a 10oz. tulip.

Serving type: cask

03-27-2013 14:22:40 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of iD9


3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from the bottle into a 8 oz. cognac snifter.

Appearance: Bright straw-yellow color with a foamy head. Little retention, immediately boils down to a minimal lace. Notable carbonation in the glass. Brew is clear through-and-through. A slight golden tint through the body of the beer.

Smell: Slight earthy nose, and a touch of piney aroma. Ends with a mild fresh-hop finish. Aromatics are inoffensive and fit the style.

Taste: Dry throughout, with a hint of malt towards the back end. Finishes with a touch of hop bitterness but, again, very mild.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied and crisp. As the carbonation dies down some the body fills out a touch but is still notably effervescent.

Overall: Infinitely quaffable. Light, crisp characteristic with a mild aromatic profile and refreshing array of flavors make Thornbridge's Kipling and excellent summer beer. A definite improvement on many summer standards. I approve.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2013 22:13:57 | More by iD9
Photo of JohnQVD

New York

4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on Feb 19 from a growler filled on Feb 16.

Straw colored with a light layer of foam. Mildly effervescent. Nose is grapefruity and floral with pine resin. Mouthfeel is light and bright. Taste is bitter and tart at first, with a hint of mineral and a slightly bitter, nutty aftertaste.

Overall, this beer is well balanced, tasty and refreshing.

Serving type: growler

02-20-2013 01:55:42 | More by JohnQVD
Photo of Bouleboubier


4.45/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: medium yellow-gold color, with a touch of haze....topped with a bright, off-white, soft-foamy head....very nice, narrow bands of lace, some smears

S: fresh, green cereal grass, earthy and woody....lemon or grapefruit peel....sweet, sugary crystal malt and some light toffee....some faint toasted pale malt

T: earthy, "plant-like" hop flavor, potent, vibrant...nice hop bitterness, balanced well with the honey-ish, slightly doughy malt flavors....moderate, smooth citrus-zesty zing...touch of sweetness....refreshingly bitter and fruity (white grape, lemon) through a dry enough finish

M: light, yet malty, in a Czech Pils fashion....perhaps some delicate graininess

O: fantastic English pale....more like a prototypical American pale, but with very (or entirely) English nuances....could see this being misinterpreted and/or underrated (though I see here many agree with me on its merits)

Serving type: on-tap

02-09-2013 19:04:48 | More by Bouleboubier
Photo of hopsolutely

Ontario (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The best American-style pale ale I have ever enjoyed from a British brewery. As a self-professed "hop head", this beer is an exceptionally pleasant surprise.

Pours a hazy and insipid yellow with a limited white head that did not offer great expectations. However a delightful hop-forward aroma of tropical fruits with a mild citrus undertone hints at the upcoming flavour profile. Enough malted barley for a decent body and mouthfeel, but an impressively wide hop palate: mango, pineapple and other tropical fruits with pine resin and citrus elements. Nice balance of sweet and dry across the body with a lingering bitterness to the finish.

Rating it based on enjoyment rather than style, as this is unlike any other "British" ale I have had... would definitely recommend!

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2012 00:09:58 | More by hopsolutely
Photo of BlackHaddock

United Kingdom (England)

3.33/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

500ml bottle: slightly out of date when poured into an 'Old Speckled Hen' badged pint vase on 9th Dec 2012.

Pale yellow body with a slight haze to it: on top a rippling uneven head of white bubbles.

Tropical fruit aroma: the taste is simular but more citrusy with the dry citrusy bitterness getting stronger as the mouth loses the last drop of beer in each sip/gulp. This is a summers day brew, not a cold December evening one. Refreshing but not at all warming or cosy.

Well crafted but not a beer I'll be trying to find again: my taste buds prefer sweeter, maltier flavours.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2012 19:26:22 | More by BlackHaddock
Photo of BGDrock

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: white head, thick and bubbly; golden like a pineapple; clear

Aroma: pineapple and mango slap you in the face, with fresh hop bitterness balancing it out

Taste & Mouthfeel: medium-light body and silky smooth; mild sweetness is very different and balanced just right with bitterness - this ones is all about the hops; specific flavours don't play in taste as much as did in the aroma, but the fruit is definitely tropical

Overall: a great choice for summer with light, unusual flavours, and very easy-drinking

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2012 01:11:38 | More by BGDrock
Photo of haz77


3.75/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear straw with a finger of frothy white head. The quickly recedes but a swirl of the glass easily refreshes it. A couple of streamers are visible.

S - Biscuity malt, guava, passion fruit, pineapple, some grassy (?) hops buried behind all of this. Fairly tempting.

T - The start is all biscuity malt before the tropical fruit really moves forward in the middle. Guava and passion fruit in particular are prominent at the end along with bubblegum. A lightly dry bitter aftertaste lingers for some time. Very pleasantly and easily quaffable, if lacking some depth of interest.

M - Medium body with soft, persistent carbonation, which finally fades at the end of the drink, leaving the hop bitterness to cleanse the palate. Solid.

D - Well crafted, solid brew. An easy drinker with just enough punch to catch you out.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2012 11:52:52 | More by haz77
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Kipling from Thornbridge Brewery
90 out of 100 based on 206 ratings.