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Swami's IPA - Pizza Port Solana Beach

Not Rated.
Swami's IPASwami's IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

146 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 146
Hads: 968
Avg: 4.07
pDev: 22.85%
Wants: 69
Gots: 179 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Pizza Port Solana Beach visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 08-22-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 146 | Hads: 968
Photo of Sammy
3.64/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Solena Beach. A real winner IPA. I didn't get aroma here, maybe it was my still frozen nose coming in that day from the East Coast. Taste was yeasty and there was a lot of lace. Decent mouthfeel and drying bitterness. Brought a bottle home.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.11/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Instant Replay in Canoga Park, CA.

Pours a hazy gold with a foamy beige head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Thick rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, citrus zest, and pineapple aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest and grapefruit juice flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.45/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

tallboy, mostly clear sunny yellow color, inch of white head. its a fine ipa and all, no off flavors in the least, nothing missing, but its just generic in every conceivable way. a nice west coast style nose, hop resins and bitterness collide, piney for sure, but i have smelled this smell a million times, and already know the pale malts on the front end will be basic two row with nothing distinct, and that the hoppy finish will be unnecessarily bitter and long, to the point of trying too hard to be robust, and falling into that C+ category that seems to accumulate so many india pale ales, especially california ones. well carbonated and a little too squarely medium bodied. nothing special, although its not poorly made, it just doesn't distance itself from the enormous crowd of so/so india pales. passable, but utterly forgettable.

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Photo of brentk56
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color capped by an inch of foam; a few swathes of lacing descend from the lip

Smell: Bright and fruity, with tropical tones (pink grapefruit, pineapple and mango) as well as cantaloupe, onion and a touch of pine

Taste: Smell begets taste, with many of the same flavors arriving on the tongue; just a touch of biscuity malt underpins and the finish is moderately bitter; oniony finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: As others have noticed, this is a quintessential West Coast IPA, San Diego Pale Ale or whatever you want to call it - I call it quite tasty

Thanks, fthegiants, for the opportunity

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sixteen ounce can filled on 1/3/14. (2 weeks ago). Drink by date 4/3/14. ABV on can is 6.8% while listed on BA as 6.9%.

A: Pours a clear golden yellow with a solid 1-inch thick white head which recedes slowly leaving semi-rings and splothes of lace.

N: Shines bright initially with juicy grapefruit/citrus and tropical (mango and lychee) fruits. Initial blast of perfumy floral is wonderful, but fades as this sits for just a bit (5-10 minutes). Faint dankness.

T: More balance here with piney hops and malts with some biscuity notes.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Dry, bitter herbal piney finish.

O: Smell leads in rating, but only on first pour. Fairly straightforward IPA and easy drinking.

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Photo of womencantsail
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Pizza Port Solana Beach

A: The pour is amber in color with an emphasis on the orange hues. The head is dense, creamy, and white.

S: Lots of hop aroma right out of the gate with grapefruit, grass, and orange and lemon zest. There's a bit of a bread aroma and as the beer warms up, some hints of tropical fruit.

T: The pine and associated bitterness are immediately noticeable. There's quite a bit of grapefruit and grapefruit rind present, too. The malt is there and gives the beer a solid bread base.

M: Definitely medium in body with a moderate carbonation and a dry, bitter finish.

D: A nice IPA that won't blow your socks off but will give you a pleasurable drinking experience.

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Photo of jlindros
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

well thanks for this missed review beer Rudzud... but I'm not gonna review it just to spite you, this beautiful tall boy can of fresh IPA, canned on 7/08/14.

If I were to review this, which I'm not, I would talk about how the beer pours a huge fluffy 2+ finger head that fades at a med pace, leaves a nice soapy lacing, and a mostly clear honey golden color. 4.25

the nose, if I had reviewed this, would have been pretty nice, grassy hops, a little leafy and floral, touch of resin and flashes of a fruity hop aroma, and what would have been just a touch of a light malt. 4

Taste is... I mean could have been pretty nice as well, btu alas no review to speak of here. BUt the flavor I got from sipping it brought nice hops again, a bit noble flavor with nice grassy soft hops, but then a nice bitter American hop kick with touches of pine and resin, and a nice fruity bubblegum, and faint grassy minty like note, little melon rind, all with a nice mild fluffy malt base that only props the hops up. Finish is drier and a nice bitterness throughout, little more melon rind and grassy hops lingering. 4.25

Mouth is med bod, nice carb. 4.25

Overall, it's too bad I didn't review this as it would have been pretty good. Nice hops, good malt just enough to deliver the hops, nice carbonation, quite tasty and enjoyable. If on'y I had reviewed this, but I'll refrain just to spite rudzud! 4.5

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Photo of Kegatron
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Pizza Port Solana Beach on 3/16/09. Served in a pint glass.

Pours a deep clear copper with a 1/2 finger of brite-white foam. Retains with a small covering that skims the surface but this flares up nicely into a big creamy cascade that leaves sticky lacing back. The aroma is floral, spicy, and piney; and is just absolutely lush with tropical fruit character. Some additional notes of toasted caramel malts balances the nose and add some extra sweetness that compliments the citrus.

The taste is absolutely West Coast feeling. Spicy resinous hops and tropical fruits just blast the mouth. Luckily, there is a big supportive backbone of bread and caramel behind it that evens things out. Bitterness and tang just HANG on the tongue for the good bit. Maybe this is a bit unbalanced towards the hops but I don't care. This is how I like my San Diego Pale Ales! The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a soft and creamy carbonation that makes this fantastically smooth in the mouth. Just a touch of warmth invades the profile at times but it doesn't impact the drinkibility (which is quite good) at all.

This is the "House IPA" here at the Solana Beach location and for me, this is up there with the Carlsbad/Port Brewing Wipeout IPA for being just about thee quintessential San Diego IPA. It doesn't get much better than sitting on a bench at PP, nibbling on some pizza, sipping the Swami, and smelling the nearby Pacific. Perfect...

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Photo of mactrail
3.37/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Quite hazy golden amber poured in the Brewery Vivant tulip. Foam appearance in nice with lots of suds along the glass. Aroma of fruity pineapple hops is nice.

Some malty substance but the hops are quite aggressive. A touch of mango flavor with a little sweetness is one pleasant note. Serious grapefruit peel taste. Sharp and dry. Aftertaste is on the bitter side of average for an IPA. Definitely the southern California (and Colorado) bite.

Overall this is kind of thick in the mouthfeel and overly bitter. From the 16 oz can purchased at Bine & Vine on Adams Ave.

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Photo of superspak
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a trade with BeerBaron666. 16 ounce can into tulip glass, canned on 1/3/2014. Pours slightly hazy golden amber color with a 2 finger dense off white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of huge tangerine, grapefruit, lemon zest, orange zest, pineapple, orange rind, floral, grass, pine, light honey, and floral/grassy earthiness. Fantastic aromas with great complexity of bright citrus hop notes with light-moderate malt presence; and great strength. Taste of big tangerine, grapefruit, lemon zest, orange zest, pineapple, orange rind, floral, grass, pine, light honey, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of earthy floral/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of tangerine, grapefruit, lemon/orange zest, pineapple, orange rind, pine, floral, grass, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity of bright citrus hops with light-moderate malt presence; with a crisp malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, crisp, and moderately sticky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome IPA. All around great complexity of bright citrus/pine hops flavors with light-moderate malt presence; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of mothman
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one on tap at Port in Solana Beach

Poured into a pint glass.

Pours 1/2 finger of off white head. Fades to a thin layer but leaves some nice sticky lace walls. Color is a clear golden sunset.

Aroma: Nice floral hop profile with a high amount of citrus. Caramel and bready malts balance it out a bit. Solid IPA aroma.

Taste: Just like the aroma, but it has more caramel malts to it. Big citrus floral taste. A good amount of grapefruit. Has a bubblegum flavor in the background. Very solid ipa.

Mouthfeel: Bitter, but not over the top bitter. Refreshingly clean. Medium bodied with a nice amount of carbonation. Ends sticky, which is expected.

Overall, a solid ipa and very drinkable. Well to the style. Glad I got to try this one. A staple of an ipa.

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Photo of GClarkage
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Late May 2006- On tap at Pizza Port in Solana Beach, CA.

Presentation- Via the tap into two sets of samplers.

Appearance- Deep and dark golden in appearance. Creamy 1/4 inch head with light patchy lace.

Smell- Sweet caramel and bready malt with a fruity hop note.

Taste- Hops are rather laid back with a floral and fruity taste. Malt is the main player here which complements the hops well. Very bready and buiscut like.

Mouthfeel- Average carbonation, light bitterness.

Drinkability- Think I have tried this before at the Toronado. Will revisit if I see it again. Very tasty brew.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.54/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one showed up in a sort of FFT CANTrade ™ from a trader in Virginia who had received this and a couple of other Pizza Port CANs in a trade of his own and knew that I would up my ante in return for receiving them. Indeed.

From the CAN: "We have been brewing Swami's IPA for over 20 years, so to finally share this in a CAN is a dream come true! Whatever your form of meditation is, we hope that each and every sip [CAN]tributes to your own self realization! Cheers!"

The Crack! brightened the day and I CANtinued the celebration with an inverted Glug until the glass became close to full of the CANtents of the pint-sized CANtainer. The smell of grapefruit-citrus hops immediately filled the room and once again, I found myself wishing for this as an air freshener. It settled into three fingers of dense, French Vanilla-colored head with excellent retention. Color was a hazy Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 – 5). Leaning in for a better sniff, I also noted pine hops among the citrus. Now, my mouth was watering unCANtrollably! I watched as the head slowly fell, leaving loads of sticky lacing in its wake. Finally, I could take a sip. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was a hophead’s wet dream! It was grapefruit, orange peel and pine, all wrapped up into one big joygasm on the tongue. It simply stood to reinforce my love of hops and especially in AIPAs. Man, I could just sit and drink hop-driven beers all day until I simply fell out! This was a little big at 6.8%, but I am up to the task. Finish was dry, hoppy, bitter, just the way, uh huh uh huh, I like it.

My original on-tap review follows:

I had mine at Downtown Johnny Browns.

It arrived with only wisps for head but with a stunning clarity in a deep-amber beer. The nose was heavenly! It had a beautiful floral aspect, but muted at the same time. Letting it warm just a bit made it smell like I had rubbed fresh hops in my palms. Oily, floral, even a little fruity. Mouthfeel tended to the thin side, but the slick, oily feeling that I got on the tongue more than made up for it. Finish was beautifully, lingeringly hoppy. Damn! I refuse to move back to the Left Coast, but they have fantastic beer.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the can into a Spiegelau IPA glass. Canned Oct 7th. 2014.

Extremely pale amber, nearly lemon, with some faint bronze orange highlights in the body color with great clarity. Lost of plentiful and nice looking carbonation, reaching to a big creamy thick filled off white four finger head. Thick creamy retention with angel food cake like creamy top. Thick bubbled but slowly settles and doesn't break into chunks. Real nice.

Very nice hop juiced fruit tropical aroma. Some nice grass and fresh mellow cut senses going on with a hint of herbality too. Slightly spicy, and has a bit of mango character it seems. Subtle and subdued sweetness also.

Palate comes with a bit more crisp character. Steely fruit and washing tropical flavors. Hints of melon and mango like flavors with a clean and very crisp almost Kolsch like body. A mild sense of ripping grain on this, nearly husky but with lots of dryness. Some intersting sugar spices kick in as well

Pretty nice, but quite light bodied, and not so big on the fruit angle. Definitely a good IPA and some of its mellow character makes it a bit appealing too.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.43/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

16 oz. can poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Pale orange body. Big white head. Lots of surface foam and a chunky collar.

Smell - Dank and grapefruity. Toasty malt. Some caramel.

Taste - Grapefruit. Very little sweetness. Bitter immediately. Grassy hop finish. Some toasty malt.

Mouthfeel - Very bitter. Seems overcarbonated. Medium body.

Overall - Everyone else loved this but me. Just thought it was good.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


On tap at Pizza Port Solana Beach in a tulip.

A: Bright and luminous medium gold with nice clarity and a two finger crown of foam.

S: Vibrant citrus nose, with notes of peach, orange, tangerine, and grapefruit flesh. Pine resin is aromatic and blends nicely with the soft citrus. No malt is evident in the nose.

T: Ephemeral sweetness up front fades almost instantly to dryness. Bitterness is moderate with ample hop flavor. Orange, peach, and grapefruit meld with resinous pine and the slightest suggestion of alcohol. Finish is dry and hop flavorful with a trailing bitterness. No real malt influence.

M: Upper light in body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is sticky, crisp, and dry.

Overall: A really nice light bodied IPA. This would get 4.25s for appearance, smell, taste, and overall if that were an option. Recommended.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Pours a nice clear golden amber with a one finger white head with great retention and lacing. Pineapple aroma poured out of the can on pouring and the aroma in the glass is pineapple, citrus hops, mixed tropical fruit, light pure lemon and a hint of pine, nice. Flavor is lemony citrus hops, lemon rind, light tropical fruit and mild malt; the malt is almost completely subsumed into the hop component, but seems to provide great support without much malt flavor. Finishes with lemon rind and piney hop bitterness. Medium bodied with good carbonation. A great lemon citrus IPA with light pine and herbal flavors, light tropical fruit. I usually like a more substantial malt flavor in my IPAs, but enjoyed this a lot. The very assertive tropical fruit in the aroma is not as evident in the flavor due to the intensity of the citrus hops, but the dominate hop flavor is great by itself. Great citrus IPA.

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Photo of DrJay
3.59/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear amber with a fine, light beige cap. Great head retention with tons of lacing. Lots of hop aroma, citrus and grapefruit, but it ended up being sort of plain. Strong bitterness and light on malt flavour. Plenty of citrus and grapefruit, some pith, and a hint of hop spice. Medium to light bodied, dry, with smooth carbonation. A good IPA with lots of hops, well crafted, but a bit one dimensional.

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Photo of rudzud
4.39/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Recieved as an extra in a trade an dpoured into my Duvel tulip. Canned on 7/3/14

A - Poured a nice crystal clear straw gold hue with a a billowy three finger head that fades to leave sticky side lacing and a thin blanket. Head kind of exploded on this one. 4.25 (x .05 = .213)

S - Aromas of big, bolder hops. Wet bitter citrus peel, grapefruit, pineapple, mango. The grapefruit really really pops on this and outshines the pine that is there at well. Just a classic west coast IPA aroma profile here. 4.5 (x .2 = .9)

T - Taste is similar to the nose here. More of those awesome awesome bitter wet citrus notes. Great balance of pine and grapefruit peel/pith here with flashes of pineapple and even some stone fruit every now and then. A little malty sweetness to keep things in check here but make no mistake, this is a hop heavy IPA. The finish is pleasantly bitter with faint resins. No alcohol on the pallet, really delicious. 4.5 (x .45 = 2.025)

M - Mouthfeel is a bit lighter, though not thin, with lower carbonation. Probably my only knock against this would be wanting it to be brighter and more carbonation. 4 (x .1 = .4)

O - Overall this is a prime example of a well executed west coast IPA. The nose and taste really pops here, my only knock would be the mouthfeel though even that was decent enough. Very well crafted IPA. 4.25 (x .2 = .85)

Total Rating Score: 4.39
Serving Type: Can

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another SDIBF tasting note. Came out a darker auburn and amber. What happened to the hops? None in the nose, or anything else for that matter.

Tastes like a lighter ipa for Port, barely noticeable pine. A light caramel base. Almost the antithesis of their anniversary or hop 15 beers. Stays around in the mouthfeel, which is always nice. What seemed like a lighter ipa evolves into a more sturdy one. Just didn't resonate the first few sips. Port's stuff is always priced nicely, which really helps drinkability.

Edit: much easier to smell the aroma today, 6-25-11. Getting a growler

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Photo of spinrsx
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz Can from Total Wine Palm Desert CA for $3

Appearance - Amber colour with an average size white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for around 3-4 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, hops, grapefruit, apricots

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, grapefruit, and hops. There is also some lemon, apricot and a bubblegum like flavour.

Overall - Lots of hops and a little bit of a different fruity type flavour that still works. Wish I had access to beers like this everyday.

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Photo of Gusler
4.29/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a light hazed golden amber color with a modest semi-creamy head that is light tan in color with the lace forming a tight sheet to obscure the glass. Hop floral nose, citrus crisp and fresh, nice base of sweet malt also present, start is sweet with a splendid malt richness, top is middling in feel. Briskly acidic finish, the hops powerful and pleasing to this old hop head, tart and quite dry finish, what a treat, what a great brewing company, geez I wish they were here in Phoenix.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Can from Whole Foods. Canned 04 Dec.

A clear light orange with a thin, off white head with decent retention and lacing, this looks decent. The nose is solid. Bright lemon peel and pine, clean, snappy, oily and hoppy, wonderfully piney and nicely floral. The palate opens bright and pungent with orange peel, pine and a moderate bitterness. Resiny on the mid palate with pleasing stickiness, this beer is light in body, has minimal malt character and is great on the palate. Drying and bitter on the finish with lingering hop oils, point resin and pungent citrus, this beer is excellent. Highly recommended. Exceptionally clean.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.1/5  rDev -23.8%

Pour is clear golden in color with a bubbly white head. Nose is mostly caramel malt sweetness with resiny and citrusy hop profile. Flavor has sweet malts, lots of doughy bread, moderate orange citrus, light bitterness, some resinous hop through the finish. Light carb, syrupy feel, fuller body.

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Photo of ZAP
4.31/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-Golden colored with a light creamy head

S-Very fresh floral aroma...Sweet fruits as well....Ripe Cantaloupe, and ripe oranges...and to a lesser extent some mango, papaya,and peaches...just a hint of dankiness..Excellent aroma to this. Fresh.

T-Fruity along the same lines as the aroma. Not bursting with hop flavor but it is enjoyable. Getting some orange peal and unsweetened grapefruit now as well as pine... Balanced by a sweeter crackery maltiness.

M-Not overly bitter but a nice tight dryness on the finish.

O-Smells a little better than it tastes but overall this is a winner. An upper tier IPA to add to the growing list.

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Swami's IPA from Pizza Port Solana Beach
91 out of 100 based on 146 ratings.