1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Kipling - Thornbridge Brewery

Not Rated.

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

221 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 221
Reviews: 101
rAvg: 4
pDev: 11.75%
Wants: 26
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 221 | Reviews: 101 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of windypete

United Kingdom (England)

4/5  rDev 0%

01-21-2012 21:58:58 | More by windypete
Photo of metter98

New York

4.03/5  rDev +0.8%

A: The beer is hazy light yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high white head that died down but consistently left a thin head covering the surface.
S: The Nelson Sauvin hops impart interesting aromas of tropical fruits in the nose along with some notes of citrus.
T: The a light to moderate amount hop bitterness really stands out in this beer, which also has notes of gooseberries and grapefruit from the hops in the flavors.
M: It feels medium-bodied, crisp and clean on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink because it is well balanced. The Nelson Sauvin hops result in interesting aromas and flavors.

01-21-2012 04:10:50 | More by metter98
Photo of berley31

New Brunswick (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +12.5%

01-04-2012 22:12:07 | More by berley31
Photo of wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev -0.5%

500ml bottle poured into tulip 21/12/11

A clear bright yellow with plenty of bubbles feeding a large well retained bone white head that leaves several thick rings of lace that stick out off the glass, slowly falls to an island leaving lots of lace right down the glass

S quite tropical with pineapple sticking out, a little grassy and I can see how this hop got its name with a little vinous sauv notes, not quite cat pee but I see the similarities to the grape

T a little grainy with all the tropical fruit I could smell, slightly herbal and rather pleasant

M rather light and refreshing, some lemon rind on the aftertaste and perhaps just too many bubbles as its on the foamy side of creamy

O something different and I rather liked it, a nice mix of flavors and smell I just wish it was hot outside

I might be grabbing another one of these just to acquaint myself with the hop, I can't think of having this hop before and I'd like to have it again

12-22-2011 03:25:36 | More by wordemupg
Photo of DoubleJ


4.03/5  rDev +0.8%

Hearing the words "Kipling" and "South Pacifc Style" conjures images of the British Empire reaching to that part of the world over a century ago. Today, the English brewer Thronbridge is taking hops from that part of the world and fusing them into a traditional English style of beer. Here comes 500 ml of anticipation. On to the beer:

At first glance, it looks more like a lager with its washed out godlenrod color. The head has thick, rocky formation on top, which leaves plenty of strings of lacing around the glass. There's fun in the nnose; it feautres aromas of grass, melon, kiwi, and tangerine. Man, do I love these New Zealand hops.

The flavor profile leans a little towards the English side. But make no mistake, those Nelson Sauvin hops do make more than a mere showing. The canvas feautres a pleasant, moderate amount of butteriness and hard water minerals. On the canvas, the hops paint subtle flavors of grass, melon, pineapple, and vague citrus. Minerals and grassiness linger in the aftertaste. The beer has a light body with a semi-crisp carbonation that is refreshing.

A unique hybrid of a relatively old beer style fused with a relatively new varierty of hop. More importanly is that the hybrid works. I'm be looking forward towards more Thornbridge in the future.

12-15-2011 05:47:51 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of IronDjinn

Alberta (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev -10%

From a 500 ml brown bottle. Pours out a cloudy straw hue with a frothy off-white head that slowly settles.

Sharp white grapefruit notes on the nose, some yeasty spice, backed up with some dry grains and very mild biscuity malt.

Juicy white grapefruit character up front in the flavour, dry spicy character in the middle, with grainy malt on the finish. Aftertaste contains a lingering of pepper and grapefruit pith.

Medium-bodied mouthfeel, yet on the lighter end of that zone. Grainy, pin-prickly texture obtained from an assertive amount of carbonation.

A tasty, enjoyable English Pale Ale that gives a serious nod towards APA's. I'd reach for another of these for sure, and love the name's homage to one of my favourite writers.

12-13-2011 06:37:32 | More by IronDjinn
Photo of PthPndr


3/5  rDev -25%

12-12-2011 23:05:26 | More by PthPndr
Photo of biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev -3.8%

500ml bottle. The South Pacific is a new one for me, insofar as pale ales are concerned.

This beer pours a slightly hazy medium apple juice yellow colour (decently pale), with a tall column of thick foamy white head, which leaves a combination of chunky and frilly lace on its slow slide to oblivion. It smells of pineapple citrus, musty straw, soft grain, and a weedy, grassy, teetering on skunky hoppiness. The taste is quite reminiscent of diving into a Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc - sharp, edgy, meaty tropical fruit, and tart, almost cat-piss-esque notes dominate; the malt is still underwhelming, of the mild crackery ilk, and the hops also seem weedy, funky, and musty. The carbonation is average, though a tad frothy, the body medium light in weight, and a bit too prickly to be considered all that smooth. It finishes just a wee bit off-dry, the grainy malt asserting itself somewhat, before a final blow of funky, fruity hops closes things out.

Well, the Nelson Sauvin hops do a damned fine job of furthering the terroir of New Zealand - so many strange flavours for a pale ale - a thought stolen from Old World white wine drinkers at some point, I would imagine. A little intense, and confounding, at first, but once settled in, I rather enjoyed this little antipodean experiment.

11-30-2011 23:51:31 | More by biboergosum
Photo of kaelingirl


4/5  rDev 0%

11-30-2011 00:15:01 | More by kaelingirl
Photo of Daniellobo

District of Columbia

4.25/5  rDev +6.3%

11-26-2011 23:05:14 | More by Daniellobo
Photo of JAHMUR


4.25/5  rDev +6.3%

11-15-2011 20:22:52 | More by JAHMUR
Photo of rob133


5/5  rDev +25%

11-14-2011 23:30:14 | More by rob133
Photo of Jspriest


4.75/5  rDev +18.8%

11-14-2011 18:15:02 | More by Jspriest
Photo of Brabander


4.22/5  rDev +5.5%

I got this bottle from my dear buddy Craig (Zimbo) in a trade we now and then do. I had this bottle for quit a while in the fridge but because of my daughters birthday i cracked this one open for the occasion.

Poured in my Struise glass the beers looks good, A bit cloudy yellow with a nice fluffy head.

Aromas come in the nose. Nice citrus hops.

Taste is like a pale ale should be, I had some pumpkin and pineapple in the taste.

11-09-2011 20:58:54 | More by Brabander
Photo of Zimbo

United Kingdom (Scotland)

4.18/5  rDev +4.5%

Drunk at the superb 'Staggs' Volunteer Arms in Musselburgh. Cost £3.25.

Good couple of mm thick white foam with a hazy har of light yellow. Thick wave blanket of foam clings to the glass side with evey sip.

There is some very appealing tropical fruit on the nose. A much fuller body than the bottled version which to be honest swamps and smothers some of the beer's more appealing and delicate qualities. But as compensation the force of the body pulls the flavour around the mouth giving you a real sense of a full long massaging bitterness. Still, I miss that lightness of touch that comes from the bottle I am afraid to say.

10-16-2011 19:40:52 | More by Zimbo
Photo of Boozecamel

British Columbia (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev +0.8%

Appearance: Wonderfull golden yellow, slightly hazy, with good pure white head. Poured into a pint glass

Smell: Initial citrusy/onion hit with sweet peaches and oranges.

Taste: Citrussy with a strong bitter finish. Little bit of toffee sweetness in the middle.

Mouthfeel: Light, refreshing mouthfeel.

Overall: Easy drinking, refreshing beer with great citrus notes balanced well with the bitter finish. Perfect drinking for a 29 degree London afternoon. Many rave about Jaipur, but I’m more of a Kipling fan.

10-01-2011 14:57:46 | More by Boozecamel
Photo of TheHoppiest


3.88/5  rDev -3%

Poured from a 500 ml bottle into a pint glass. Pours a hazy straw color, with a thin white head.

Has a very European aroma to it; wet straw, almost skunky, with a mild malt aroma.

Starts with a mild toffee malt flavor that quickly melts into a very bitter, dry finish. Fairly peppery in the finish, but lacking any real hop taste. The skunkiness in the aroma is also slightly present in the taste.

This is light to mid-light bodied beer, with a soft feel but a bitter finish. The bitterness is a little out of place, at first, given how soft the water is that makes up this beer.

This ale certainly improved as it breathed, as it released a lot of the "skunkiness" that first presented in the smell and taste. The bitterness is classic Thornbridge; in fact, whichever hop was used to create the bitterness likely is the same one used in their Jaipur IPA. Not a bad English PA, though slightly more bitter than others I've had - something that works for me. Still, of the Jaipur, the Raven and the Kipling, the Kipling is my least favorite of the bunch.

09-10-2011 22:28:57 | More by TheHoppiest
Photo of emerge077


3.98/5  rDev -0.5%

On tap at Local Option, served in a fluted tulip glass.

Bright high clarity gold, other side of the glass is clearly visible. Soapy white foam on the surface that billows up to the rim at first, sticking to the sides on the way down. Drippy lacing left in it's wake. Retention is good, lasting for the entire glass.

Pale malt notes, sort of a grassy lager aroma. Ok, but nothing too different here.

Flavor is firmly bitter, plenty of grassy, lemony hop character. Dried citrus peel, hay, some vague weediness. Effervescent and medium bodied, exceptionally dry and crisp finish. Light and not too filling. Nicely drinkable, several would be easy to drink, if only it wasn't $9 for a small glass.

09-09-2011 18:53:12 | More by emerge077
Photo of WVbeergeek

West Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +2.5%

Brilliant golden pour on tap at Piper's Pub in Pittsburgh's Southside, it's a pale golden ale much like a hazed Czech or German pils in appearance. Light biscuit malts labeled as a South Pacific Pale Ale, recently showed up at my local in Ohio for 6.99 a 500 ml bottle. I hate to say it but I passed at those prices. I'm pretty sure I had an imperial pint for at or around 5 bucks at Piper's. Aroma has a citrus grapefruit esque earthy grassy hop profile about it. Very pleasant floral aspect as well, all those hops amongst a pale biscuit malt background a bit of fruity earthiness comes through from the yeast and English brewing traditions. Flavor was nice a really refreshing hoppy pale ale, English style not an Americanized pale not as aggressive but very well executed and flavors definitely blend together nicely. The pale biscuit malt sweetness with a mild fruitiness is the perfect back drop for the star of the show in this case Nelson Sauvin hops. Those hops bring the herbal grassiness with a nice persistent grapefruit pith bitterness. Mouthfeel was lighter bodied with moderate carbonation a really crsip nice drinking pale ale with great complexity for a beer so light in color. Overall impression is that it would be a great beer to attempt to drink in number, but the price point at 6.99 a bottle may stop me from drinking it indefinitely.

08-26-2011 18:52:01 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of glid02


4.2/5  rDev +5%

Cask at the Brick Store.

Pours a slightly hazy golden-copper color with a white head that leaves decent lacing.

Smells of crisp pale malts with good amounts of light citrus and earthy hops. Also present are mild amounts of breadiness.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though not quite as robust. Smooth pale malts up front are joined quickly by light citrus hops – lemon rind with hints of grapefruit. Midway through moderate amounts of breadiness temper the bitterness from the hops until leafy and somewhat earthy hops come in near the end, carrying through to a moderately bitter ending. Mouthfeel is good, with soft carbonation.

Overall I was really impressed with this beer and could easily have more than a few of these. Well worth a shot.

08-19-2011 18:30:50 | More by glid02
Photo of chicagoabbot


4.4/5  rDev +10%

My friend had a 500ml bottle of this and split it with me, into pint glasses. Pours a bright body with plenty of head, great color an English IPA, or a "South Pacific Style" as they call it. Smell has the slightly more subdued hop profile characteristic of the English IPAs (compared to the huge West Coast IPAs). Very clean, with a unique hop profile. Taste is plenty bitter with a depth of malt character and some hop varieties that I have not tasted before, or at least not in this particular combination. Really solid English IPA. Recommended.

07-14-2011 03:18:51 | More by chicagoabbot
Photo of CwrwAmByth

United Kingdom (Wales)

4/5  rDev 0%

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a samuel smith pint glass.

Appears a pale yellow/golden colour with not much of a head to talk about.

Smells of hops and alcohol.

Tastes like a citrus zest with lots of hops and bitterness. Quite a refreshing taste.

Overall a good refreshing beer, went well with a roast pork dinner.

07-03-2011 20:51:48 | More by CwrwAmByth
Photo of cpolking


4.22/5  rDev +5.5%

The beer pours a glowing yellow golden, slightly cloudy, with a small white head that leaves a nearly clear glass.

The aroma is much like a lager, grain and some straw/grain/barn/ "funk." There is a bit of light fruit in the aroma as well and some light leather.

The taste is a wave of lager with the funk, followed immediately by a refreshing fruitiness with zesty citrus and tropical notes, with another quick wave of dry bitterness that finishes the flavor.

While not visibly highly carbonated the beer has a biting, carbonated mouthfeel that finishes dry. This is a very flavorful and refreshing beer.

06-05-2011 00:44:12 | More by cpolking
Photo of akorsak


3.78/5  rDev -5.5%

A 500 mL bottle from IM Wine.

A: The pale ale is light, a hybrid looker that seems to fall between an APWA and, well, a blonde ale. A finger and a half of white head, a luxurious quantity that leaves lacing behind.

S: The EPA has light tropical aromas, sweetness alongside the biscuity malts. Flowers, fresh cut grass and mild citrus fruits. A nice package.

T: The pale biscuity malts, a soft start, supports a surprising amount of hop flavor. The ale finishes very dry after the sweetness. Flowers and grass are sweet and lightly bitter; pineapple and onion grass add sweet zestiness. The entire flavor profile is mild even with the complex tropical flavors. Unmentioned until now, the yeast provides more fruity flavors, none of which are as strong as the hops.

M: A surprisingly quaffable ale, light but hopped to a tropical tune. A wide array of citric bitterness, sugary sweet at times, dominates the ale.

05-22-2011 21:29:52 | More by akorsak
Photo of lehkost


4.72/5  rDev +18%

I think that a lot of the less-than-head-over-heels reviews on this beer are missing out on what this beer is about. Remember, this beer is a more-or-less traditional pale ale, so we aren't expecting huge body or flavor. That we do, for a 5.2% ABV ale, is an achievement in itself.

A - On draft, in a 13 oz. pub glass...like many smaller imports, I assume price point is a consideration, since this would be very sessionable at its alcohol content. A very pale, just shy of golden color. Head retention leaves something to be desired, I think, but I have had more luck in the bottle before.

S - The aroma is very unique - fresh fruits and grass. This beer is brewed exclusively with Nelson Sauvin hops (so called due to the aromatic similarity to Sauvignon Blanc wine), so this would be expected with a proper hop regimen. It is spring, so this smell is almost exactly what I'm looking for right now.

T - The taste pretty much matches the aroma. I think passionfruit, a friend thinks fresh green peppers. I read that this hops is reminiscent of fresh gooseberries, which I've never had the pleasure to try. No hint of malt sweetness, and a slightly too persistent bitter finish. Again, though, I believe that this holds up in an approach emulating a solid New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Again, a remarkably bright and full flavor for a sessionable ale.

M - Not overly carbonated, though maybe a bit much for a traditionally brewed English Pale Ale. Perhaps a bit much, not necessarily too much. I feel that it brilliantly complements the bright aroma and taste, and would make this a perfect stand-in for Sauvignon Blanc food pairings, especially citrus-marinated fish and chicken.

O - Sadly, I was not eating any food alongside this beer. I would love to explore its abilities to pair with food, which I think would also help to counteract what I think is a touch too much bitterness. Nelson Sauvin is fairly high in alpha acid, and I am sure that they'll tweak the next batch accordingly. From what I am reading this is the first commercial example of a beer brewed with this hop variety, so I'm sure that while a small (almost infinitesimal) tweak is in order, but I have a very high opinion of this beer, and I think that anyone who doesn't should give it a second (or third, or fourth) shot.

05-17-2011 21:34:31 | More by lehkost
Kipling from Thornbridge Brewery
89 out of 100 based on 221 ratings.