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Flipside Red IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Flipside Red IPAFlipside Red IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

403 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 403
Hads: 2,818
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 29.17%
Wants: 79
Gots: 585 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Zorro on 08-25-2013

Just when it feels like the dog days will never end, suddenly, the switch is flipped, the air gets cooler and it’s clear that autumn is on the way. Featuring a ruby-red hue and abundant tropical fruit and citrus hop flavors, Flipside Red IPA is the perfect beer for the final flash of summer.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 403 | Hads: 2,818
Photo of stevoj
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Darker IPA but, with beautiful thick rocky head. Some mildly bitter hoppiness, but not too tart. Smooth with a little dry hoppiness lingering. Gorgeous to look at, and too bad to drink either.

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Photo of steveh
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Never reviewed the Flipside, let alone a "Red IPA." Ba is calling this an American Amber or Red Ale, so I'll follow that lead.

Part of the Fall variety pack from SN -- bottled in July, but that's not old to me. Poured into an imperial pint.

L -- Clear, deep red with a dense, light tan head that settles slowly into a rocky, sudsy cap leaving great lacing.

S -- Piny to citrusy hop nose. Some light caramel and biscuit character back. Very SN-like in character and very appetizing.

T -- Spicy bitterness up front with mellow earthy pininess. Light roasted and sweet caramel malts follow in good balance with some fruity esters and even light mint in the finish. Aftertaste is earthy to piny bitter hops that linger long, but don't ovewhelm.

F -- Mouthfeel is surprisingly thin and dry with a medium-robust body -- rather contradictory, but the hop bitterness adds to the dryness.

O -- A very nice, well-crafted beer with great flavor, but something I wouldn't revisit more than once in a sitting. A great sipper for a cool Autumn afternoon.

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Photo of dacrza1
4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

DATE TASTED: October 9, 2015 ... GLASSWARE: Barley Creek pint... OCCASION: a good week and a good time for something flavorful... APPEARANCE: dark, amber-brown body with intimidating, slow-rising effervescence... thick, off-white, almost dirty snow head that chunks and bubbles in its center, but clings and characterizes as mountain ranges at the glass... ... AROMA: this would be the high floral breeze of Hallertau, if it were not for the slightly earthy aromas that suggest the label’s Simcoe, with the melon/tropical fruit of Centennial powerfully on display--no doubt about it, Sierra Nevada always manages their trademark allure into just about everything; the bitterness is palpable but welcoming... PALATE: medium-bodied and creamy, with a prolonged aftertaste, active, sippable but weighty...this brings an Autumnal feel to the IPA, with a heavier foretaste and subdued fizziness... TASTE: immediate maltiness apprehends the tastebuds--again, is this what the Fall tastes like? The caramel and toasted bread linger as the mango, melon, stone fruit, and a variety of flowery herbs enter the profile... the creaminess packages the flavors attractively, though this lacks--on purpose--the lighter, airy, intoxicating aspects of the traditional IPAs... OVERALL: what a solid beer to pair with an Autumn night such as this--could this beer stand up to a mild cigar? ESB overtones make for a heartier, less bitter, blunter experience; the mango and melon persevere and make a lasting impression, in what can rival both the Pale Ale and Vienna Lager in the Fall mix...no losers here...

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Photo of Pantalones
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Second bottle from the fall pack; bottling date is July 16th, 2015.

Pours a soda-esque medium brown, with a good bit of fluffy off-white foam forming on top as it goes. Head nearly filled my pint glass to the top, and seems to be hanging around pretty well -- even now it's a coating on top with a much thicker ring around the edges, and significant trails left behind where it had been before. The color isn't so much "red" as the name "Red IPA" would suggest, at least not until a good bit of light hits it and the red-orangeyness becomes more clear; looks more like a very dark red-orangey brown in the glass. Seems to be pretty clear, but maybe not perfectly clear as I can't really make out rising bubbles even with the help of my phone's screen -- it takes holding it up to the light to see those (but they're there.)

The appearance says "malty!" but the smell definitely says "hoppy!" -- even from a foot or so away I got a good whiff of grapefuit/piney type hops, and when sniffing the beer now that the foam on top has settled down into a thin coating, that's the first smell to jump out at me. Actually, maybe not entirely the standard grapefruit/pine IPA sort of thing -- there's something a little different in there, definitely a planty sort of smell but I can't quite pinpoint it. I don't think I quite noticed it the first time I had this one, though that time I only had about half a bottle's worth since I split it with my sister. Reminds me of walking through the spice aisle at the grocery store, though... or maybe walking under certain spicy-ish smelling trees? Either way, it's a nice smell.

Taste is not as hop-dominated as the smell would indicate but the hops definitely still make themselves known right away, that herbal/planty sort of thing I was picking up on the end of the smell is the first thing that shows up in the taste. There's also some nice toasty/dark bread type malt flavors hanging out in there, and a bit of sweetness at first that's pretty much totally demolished by the bitterness from the hops by the second sip. Bitterness is present for sure, but not in an overpowering or unpleasant way, just a bit of a leafy/citrus-rind bitter that comes in with the other flavors and lingers in the mouth a little longer than they do. At about the halfway point, I'm noticing that once the bitterness fades there's some nuttyish, almost savory malty flavor that lingers a bit too. Seems pretty nicely balanced, while still leaning more toward being a hoppy beer. Considering that this is a "red IPA," or basically a big malty red ale with extra hops, I'd say that's probably exactly what they were going for.

Mouthfeel is nice also -- nice soft bubbly carbonation at first, good medium feel to it, substantial but not to the point of feeling thick or "heavy"... though it does get a little more prickly/fizzy feeling toward the end of the glass as the foam on top thins out a bit. Very drinkable, I found myself emptying out the first half of the glass *much* quicker than expected. No indication that it's over 6% ABV, if not for the flavors being as big as they are I would've guessed more in the low 5% range similar to Sierra Nevada's standard Pale Ale. Still probably the closest thing to a weak point this beer has due to the getting a little pricklier toward the end of the glass, but only due to being just slightly less amazing than everything else.

Overall -- yeah, this one is GOOD. It's basically exactly what I was hoping that one of these hoppy red ales/red IPAs would be like -- lots of hops, lots of malt, you taste both and neither one overpowers the other and it all just works together so well. All things considered Flipside is probably my favorite out of the fall pack, which is saying something considering that there's not a single bad (or even average) beer in that pack. I'd definitely buy a six-pack of this one if they still put it in six-packs.

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Photo of Brian_L-2056
3.56/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an amber brown color into glass with a frothy off white color head. Lacing is plentiful as well as carbonation. Initial taste is definitely hoppy with hints of fruit and toffy. Finishes more like a red or amber ale flavor. Overall, I enjoyed this IPA because its not overpoweringly hoppy and it reminds me of other styles.

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Photo of BrownAleBollocks
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a light ruby to copper color with a one and one half finger off white head. Aroma is citrus, tropical fruits, and malt. Taste is citrus, tropical fruits, malts, and a slight spiciness. Mouthfeel is medium and a bit drying or coarse, although it works for this beer. Overall not my favorite from SN, but a nice ipa for the cooler days of fall with a nice citrus/tropical hop and malt balance.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 071615 at 42 degrees into snifter
Aroma of citrus
Head average (four cm, aggressive pour), light tan, creamy, diminishing to irregular three to 10 mm ring with layer of varying thickness giving it a mottled appearance
Lacing good – nearly complete curtains of mostly tiny bubbles
Body deep amber, chill haze
Flavor starts moderately bitter with some malt and melon flavor; no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium, watery, lively carbonation

Appearance 4.25, Aroma 4.25, Flavor 3.75, Palate 4, Overall 4

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Photo of lic217
3.87/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Look: brown with quick fading tan head
Smell: citrus hops
Taste: roasted favors, coffee, sweet at first, finishes bitter, fruity hop flavor, spices
Feel: medium bodied well carbonated, very drinkable
Overall: solid

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Photo of Strat58cat
3.31/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Sometimes, you want a really assertive beer. This isn't an IPA. IPA means India pale ale. This isn't a pale ale at all. This is a big, nasty red beer with hops that smell of dank vegetation and an assertive if not abrasive malt that battles with the dank, vegetation hops for domination. The combat between the aggressive hops and aggressive malt results in a stalemate. For the Sierra Nevada fan, the result is a highly enjoyable ale that is greater than the sum of it's parts. Your wife/girlfriend will hate this beer.

The look is outstanding. It's a dark red, trending almost so dark as to look brown in the evening light of my house. The head foams up off-white and retains, lacing down the glass.

The smell of this beer - and smell is the only word for it - is of a dank, wet, meadow, with all of the smells of vegetation that entails. Unlike Corona and some other industrial brews, which smell of rotten vegetables, Flipside smells of a dank, earthy meadow - within the smell there is a suggestion of aging vegetation, but it's buried in the mix. The overall impression is of a fresh, very earthy brew.

The taste is as advertised - very earthy. The malt is heavy on flavor and it battles with the hops to create a dank, dark, heavy ale. The finish is clean, without for example the hops-based hint of paradise that you experience concluding a Rebel. A different aesthetic is at work here - up close and personal with a Sierra Nevada meadow, where the grass and the earth are clear and present.

This ale is medium-heavy in feel. It's not subjectively as thick as, for example, Samuel Adams Octoberfest. The taste is more heavy than the feel. At the same time, this is a big, deeply roasted barley malt red beer. If you're looking for something watery to chug, look elsewhere.

In my humble opinion, this red ale more than Torpedo is the logical conclusion of the direction of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. Sierra Nevada's recent hits Torpedo and Nooner are fresh, piney, sprints through a spring meadow. Pale Ale, in contrast, uses dank hops to generate an aroma of vegetation, and a significantly roasted malt body for a toasty flavor. Here in Flipside, the dank hops and the roasted barley malt are taken to 11. Nobody wants to drink the same beer all the time. Flipside is great at being what it is. One day out of 100, probably in the fall, you prefer this heavy red ale to Torpedo.

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Photo of drtth
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours out into a Duvel glass a nice, fairly clear, mahogany color with a light tan head that recedes slowly but visibly to a band of foam with an thin layer on the liquid. There's also a island of foam created by the nucleation point. Sipping creates sheets of foam that turn into a pattern of patches and legs of lacing.

The aromas include some bready malt and some citrus zest, along with faint, well hidden touches of the "cat urine" contributed by the Simcoe hops.

As expected from the nose, the flavors include some citric zest, a touch of dark bread, some caramel sweetness and a touch of bitterness. This beer is relatively temperature sensitive in that when it is on the chilly side the bitterness is much more noticeable and almost unpleasant than after it warms and mostly smooths out.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. The finish begins about midway through as some resin character from the hops shows up, followed by persistent but gradually fading bitterness.

Overall a well made beer that is nicely drinkable so I'm glad I have a few more in the fridge. While I don't think I'd buy a full case of this beer I certainly will look forward to the fall variety pack next year. If I've a complaint about this beer its that the bitter finish is nicely dry but has no malt to smooth out the roughness until just before the end.

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Photo of puck1225
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A dark reddish brown. A bit cloudy with a good head and lacing. Crisp slightly bitter taste, good caramel and hop taste. A good red IPA but there are better ones out there.

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Photo of Alpha309
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a shaker pint.

Color is a dark copper. About a finger of lacy head. Head dissipates very slowly clinging to the sides of the glass and a solid layer over the beer throughout drinking.

Nose is earthy with hints of caramel and maple.

Earthy flavors, wood, a little bit of grass, and a hint of maple. Getting a little bit of metals in the after taste.

Body is slightly on the fuller side. Good carbonation to lighten it, but heavier than other similar beers.

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Photo of BigDaddyWarbuxx
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Shockingly potent roast flavor with this one, so much so that it could be mistaken as a porter in a blind taste test. Very nice, but nothing like what I expected.

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Photo of TheSSG
3.14/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a soft, soapy, off-white head. Soft aroma with citrus notes. Deep amber color. Starts with a nice citrus hoppiness that moves into a low-medium bitterness. Finish is lingering citrus hops.

This is okay. Not a whole lot going on here. Surprisingly low aromatics and flavor, but nice flavors nonetheless.

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Photo of Wiffler27
3.96/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a very dark red, almost brown-y with a thick white head.

the smell is very removed, almost charred sweet wood. maybe caramel.

the taste is charred and malty. slight fruit taste at the end.

goes down smooth but has a slight off taste in the end.

not a bad beer but leaves things to be desired. even recently i've had much better amber/red ales.

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Photo of SitkaSteve
3.99/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a pint glass.
The appearance was a dark red, amber color with a white colored head. Lacing was messy and all over the place and somewhat clingy, here and there.
The smell had some grapefruit, sweet caramel and toffee malts running into light grapefruit zest and backed up by other nice citrus peel.
The taste was moderately sweet backed up with earthy to grainy flavors. There's a quick dry malty finish.
The mouthfeel was about a light to medium on the body with an okay sessionability about it. Carbonation feels good for an Amber ale.
Overall, I say this was good and I would have it again.

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Photo of Catracho5
4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a tulip glass

A: Pours a dark red, amber color with a vanilla colored head, lots of lacing, great head retention, clear, decent amount of carbonation.

A: Grapefruit, sweet malts, very citrus forward, no alcohol, just lots of citrus aromas, smell pretty good.

T: Slight grapefruit, heavy on earthy, grainy flavors, some citrus peel bitterness, finishes hint of malty sweetness, has some complexity, pretty good.

M: Medium mouthfeel with a dry, semi malty finish.

O: This is pretty good, it's not an over top hop bomb but has a nice balance of slight citrus characteristics with earthy, grassy notes and flavors, very drinkable, a solid offering from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of maedhros09
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Look: Deep dark crimson with 2-3 fingers of tan head with great retention , lots of lacing, and bubbles
Smell: Somewhat faint for an IPA, with a focus on grapefruit and some savory almost rye-like aromas
Taste: Bitter grapefruit out of the gate with slight citrus sweetness. Some darker malt character as well, reminiscent of rye
Feel: Medium body with thickened mouthfeel, fine carbonation

Overall: I didn't have high expectations for this one but it was somewhat disappointing nonetheless. I tend to expect more from SN. The aroma and taste just seemed too faint for the style. Drinkable and still enjoyable, but not something I would want to buy again. Probably my least favorite of the 2015 Fall pack.

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Photo of garymuchow
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I do like trend of seasonal IPA's, but I'm not in love with this one.
Good looks with a dark red/brown color, and very clear with a dense tan head.
Aroma is more earthy but non-distinct. The flavor is similar. Mild bitterness. More carbonation than I'd like. Decent balance and the hop grows as it warms with an increasing bitterness.
Pretty average overall.

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Photo of HoppyBastard
3.91/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Shaker pint glass, "best by' date 7-2-15.

APPEARANCE: pours a clear, dark amber color with one-finger tan head that slowly dissipated until a thin, broken layer of bubbles remained, significant lacing, lighter carbonation.

SMELL: flowers and citrus, caramel, roasted malt, bread, very pleasant to the nose.

TASTE: initially sweet then roasted malt, bread and a citrus and pine hop profile.

PALATE: somewhat creamy, lighter carbonation.

OVERALL: this is a good beer, the smell is wonderful and the mouthfeel is very nice, the taste is good, I am just not able to fully appreciate the toasted malt, some beer drinkers really enjoy that but it's just not something that appeals to me so I would not seek this one out again, SN is one of the best brewers around and I can't wait to try more.

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Photo of MarkQ617
4.06/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this out of the fall mix pack. Beautiful reddish copper color, very appealing. The flavor has a smokey hops finish that is awesome for fall. Lots of sweet smoky aroma. Very smooth mouthfeel. I really liked it, a bit underrated.

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Photo of Czequershuus
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer pours a autumn leaf brown with a solid off-white head. The aromas of dense grain and honestly booze come slowly swirling out. The flavor is oaky, woodsy, umami, and with a slightly bitter, but pleasant aftertaste. This is an odd beer, not super hoppy, but with a rich brown malt presence. Not quite what I was expecting, but very nice.

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Photo of frozyn
3.96/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L -- Mahogany/dark ruby color with a finger-thick off-white (tan?) head that turns into a ring and leaves a little lacing behind.

S -- Floral, piney, a little earthy, a bit of citrus as well. Caramel hits the nose at it warms. There is a clear danky funk to it, although it doesn't overwhelm.

T -- Citrus hits hard up front, followed by floral and dank notes mid-palate. Letting it warm on the tongue brings out a malty sweetness that is followed by a mild bitterness at the end.

F -- Very drinkable, nice and smooth. A little resiny after-feel.

O -- Quite tasty -- another winner from SN. It's a nice contrast to IPAs that focus intently on only pine or citrus notes. The maltiness bring good balance. Will make for a great fall beer whenever that season finally shows up!

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
3.86/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Speiglau IPA glass.

Color is rich mahogany color with an inch head.

Aroma is toasted malt that gives way to a light citrus hop smell. Pretty pleasant.

Taste kinda lets down toasty malt doesn't quite come through leaving the light citrus hops and a thin body.

Started out strong, then really let down.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
3.77/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Dark red-brown, clear, thin white head, big lacing.

S - Primarily fruit and pine. Some honey and floral notes.

T - Bright pine hit, some spiciness suggesting pepper, mild malt sweetness, and a quick close of mild bitter notes.

M - Brisk carbonation, spiky spice notes, but a clean close that permits easy drinking.

O - Strong flavors do not change the general pleasant nature of this brew. Not exceptional, but decent.

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Flipside Red IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 403 ratings.