Carolina India Pale Ale | Carolina Brewing Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
84
good
96 Reviews
THE BROS
80
good
Read the review
BEER STATS
Reviews:
96
Ratings:
152
Avg:
3.71
pDev:
12.4%
 
 
Wants:
4
Gots:
11
For Trade:
0
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Carolina Brewing Company
North Carolina, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by GCBrewingCo on 05-19-2005

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Reviews: 96 | Ratings: 152
Photo of brentk56
4.05/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a nice fluffy white head that drops down to a film after a few minutes but leaves plenty of lacing coating the sides of the glass

Smell: Fruity citrus nose with underlying malt

Taste: The malts lay down a platform for the hops to do their thing; citrus grapefruit and slightly floral bitterness right through to the finish; metallic taste detracts slightly at the very end

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a refreshing amount of carbonation

Drinkability: A solid IPA that is just right at the end of a hot day

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Photo of oberon
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice clear rich copper with a tight one finger white head,herbal/grassy hop dominates the aromas with an underlyin sweet fruit maltiness,well rounded and balanced IPA flavor wise there is a healthy dose of grassy,herbal hop but is matched with a lightly sweet malt backbone.Fruity and herbal not to big just right makes it easy to drink and savor,one of the better North Carolina brewed IPA's in my opinion.

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Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz into a pint glass.

Pours a clear golden amber with 3 fingers of smooth off-white head. A solid foamy retention leaves a creamy latticework of sticky lacing back. The aroma is fresh herbal hops that are a bit dank and earthy with spice and a touch of pine. Underneath lies a sharp zip of caramel and citrus that adds some thickness to the bouquet.

The taste is moderately hoppy with an overall spicy, herbal, and a dry bitterness that lingers on the palate for a while. This is well balanced by a silky mix of caramel, bread, and tangy citrus. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a pricklier carbonation up front that moves into a creamier and slicker feel underneath.

No complaints here. Solid all around IPA with well balanced flavors and good drinkibility. I'd have no problem making this a hoppy go-to if it was local.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.92/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark copper in color. Short white head. The thin, just slightly sticky lace receeds leaving cobwebs and spots.

In the nose the yeast lends notes of fruit, including apricot. The hops are grassy, herbal and leafy, and perhaps a bit piney. The malt is sweetish and bready with a caramelish base.

In the mouth it's delicate, fine-bubbled carbonation caresses the tongue. Medium bodied and smooth.

The flavor basically follows the aroma, with a restrained bitterness that balances it nicely, leaving an edge of caramelish and bready sweetness.

Easy drinking. Enjoyable.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.21/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appears a bright copper golden large off white cream colored head leaves fine even lacing around my pint glass. Aroma just a touch of floral hops with tame biscuit malt sweetness a touch of mineral qualities very clean and a bit subdued. Flavor is interesting some grain offness blended with a sweet rolling caramel biscuit malt sweetness with bitterness based around perfumey floral hop flavors pretty brash really. After the inital sweetness I get the grainy nut flavor with citrus peel and floral hop flavors that's about it. Mouthfeel is medium bodied a touch of slickness but by no means oily and even carbonation no complaints there. Drinkability is okay by no means poorly made this is solid drinking IPA and I'm sure I would drink more of this if it were my only hoppy selection around but I see more hop character depth in standard IPAs that I revisit regularly.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.02/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Color caught me off-guard, as this ale is a coopery gold, like I haven't seen in an IPA in a while. A continual torrent of bubbles rush to the the top, where thin white layer foam holds it down.

Aroma speaks of pine and citrus notes, but quietly. Very distinctive, however.

Hops buzz about the palate right off the bat, leaving a trail of bitterness, spilling all over the mouth. The body's a bit light for all this, though, making it feel a bit one-dimensial, missing a match from malt. For me, though, that's not a problem. Finish is dry, and still bitter.

Very easy to drink, and just tasty enough. I like it.

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Photo of tdm168
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale amber with an orangish hue. There's a short lived, foamy head. The smell is citrusy hop aroma and orange peel with faint malt. The taste is malty but sweet, almost apple-like, with faint citrus, earthy hop notes. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, though a little thin at times, and smooth.

This beer has solid hop character, but has weak malt content to back it up. It's a little thin and underwhelming for me.

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Photo of tempest
3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a pint at the Corolla Brew Pub (it's just a beer bar) for $5. The clear amber beer was on the simpler and more drinkable end of IPA's, but it was still a pleasure to drink. The nose and taste focused on bright, piney hops with a little caramel malt in the aftertaste. There seemed to be a very slight, papery oxidation note, but otherwise this was a fine IPA for drinking in the summer heat.

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Photo of Gavage
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours an orange color with a 1" head that lasts a bit.

Smell: caramel and some earthy tones are easily detectable.

Taste: caramel, mild bitterness, soft citrus, and a mild earthiness creates a very mild flavored IPA.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Lightly crisp throughout. Short lasting aftertaste.

Overall: a very mellow and mild IPA that is easy to drink but leans more towards a pale ale for me.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.74/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a dark, slightly hazed, dark caramel coloring with a thin, sparse, off-white surface coat of head. Nose of tropical fruit forward, with pineapple, mango, and grapefruit. Backbone of tangy sweet caramel, with some roasty notes, too. Flavors are bitter and resin forward, with a cedar tassel characteristic, light fruit sweet and tart, and a solid caramel backbone. The palate is kept light by an effervescent body, with a sweet, slightly bitter aftertaste. The finish is slightly lingering, with a more malt-centric flavor left behind. Easy to drink, and very balanced.

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Photo of AngusOg
3.9/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

After all the double IPAs and hoppy IPAs I've been drinking lately, it has either jaded me a bit or this one is just much more subdued. I was waiting for that hop punch to hit me over the head, and it just wasn't there. This one reminded me more of a British IPA, much more balance. In fact alot of maltiness in the nose and flavor, with just some hop bitterness in the finish. Still, not a bad brew at all, quite enjoyable and sessionable. Not one i will seek out again, but solid for sure.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.33/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, coppery amber, almost mahogany, that is crystal clear and has a fairly thick, fluffy and somewhat persistent off-white head. Aroma is hoppy and fruity, not strong but still appetizing. Hoppy flavor has subtle woody and fruity notes and minimal bitterness. Texture is smooth, firm-bodied and fairly fizzy. Not spectacular, but still enjoyable.

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Photo of Durge
3.6/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is a dark carmel color, a bit hazey with a modest white fizz for head and pretty scant lacing. The aroma is a nutty caramel with a spritz of piney hops, clean and crisp but not real hoppy. The flavor is not typical IPA, sort of heavier toffee grass and subtle hop bitterness laced throughout. Suggests a brown ale / strong ale with a bit of extra hop influence but not an IPA by my standards. It is nicely and finely carbonated, crispy refreshment but that doesn't suit the flavor as well as a brighter, hoppier deal might have. It's not heavy in body though, fairly drinkable. Not much alcohol noted. The grassy bitterness lingers well on the tongue, a little dry. Interesting as a brown ale, a bit disappointing as an IPA. I guess it depends on your preferences and expectations. Not bad at all, worth a try if your in the Carolinas.

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Photo of Brenden
3.54/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Very clear and pretty much the epitome of amber, this brew's head is impressive. When it comes down from a massive height after the pour, its settling is just less than two fingers. The proud-looking eggshell white crown is heavy, craggy, thick and dense. It leaves a heavy ring at the top of the glass, and that's followed by some impressive patching. It finally settles to its final stage at half a finger. It may be malts more than anything, but it's impressive.
Malts it is. I don't get any real pungency out of this beer; in fact, it's hard to smell much of anything. When I do, I get biscuit, caramel, a bi of a tinny note, and a little citrus rind.
There's definitely more hop flavor, though. Citrus zest, as found in the nose, is followed by some pith, some leaf, and a bit of a woody dryness. This does balance well with malts, which add some caramel sweetness as a touch of a fruity note makes its way through.
This beer has a creamy flow to it with a nice crisp touch in a medium body that's almost light. Carbonation is a bit fluffy but is kept in check.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine May 2007.

What's up with beer labels? Some are great, while others look like this one: an ugly lion roaring and crawling out of an egg--what the hell?

Pours a bright amber color with dark orange hues. Head is creamy, frothy, a bit clingy, and healthy looking. Big, fresh, pale malt aroma, and a nice dose of citric hops underneath; grapefruit and orange. Very smooth and creamy on the palate--almost silky with an even malt body. Touch of bicarbonate and dryness mixed with some moderate carbonation that's held back by a semi-chewy viscosity. Sweetness is thin but there, and a nice citric snap breaks through the biscuity malt character with notes of grapefruit, pine, lime rinds, and grass. The hops are indeed present, but they're soft and balancing as opposed to overpowering, as many hopheads have come to expect. Some spiciness pulls through, along with suggestions of rye and a hint of hoppy soapiness. Finish is a bit drying and leafy, with the lingering herbs wrapped in a dusting of malt powder and a residual soapy character.

Nothing that'll knock your socks off, but it's a rather solid IPA that's flavorful and highly drinkable thanks to its balance and moderate alcohol content. That soapy character isn't as bad as it sounds, but we'd prefer it not to be there, if only for the sake of a more dialed-in hop profile.

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Photo of whartontallboy
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a fairly clear brassy-gold color with a nice white head that sticks around pretty well.

Smell is doughy malt with a strong, bitter hop presence that doesn't wipe out the nose, but makes itself felt. A little bit piney, a little bit floral.

Flavor is pretty subdued for an IPA, but it's a nice change of pace. The hops have a nice balance of citric flavors with spruce/pine-resin bitterness in the finish, and there's a nice caramel/biscuit malt in there that sticks up pretty well.

Mouthfeel is firmly medium.

Overall: Not the most aggressive IPA, but a tasty one. I'd love to have it again.

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Photo of blackie
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

appearance: The pour creates a very low head that quickly disappears, leaving sparse bubbles and a ring behind. The beer is a copper/amber color.

smell: Big and spicy not-so-fresh hop aromas take center stage, but a touch of sweet malt does provide some balance. The malts provide a light caramel sweetness as well as some fruity hints (spiced apple?).

mouthfeel: The carbonation is a high medium, and the body just lighter than medium.

taste: A light, clean malt sweetness is first noticed. Then comes a tea like hop flavor, with a moderate bitterness coming in at the finish. Nothing exciting, but tastes pretty good.

drinkability: pretty drinkable, but nothing special that would keep me coming back for more

A bottled on date of 1/11/06 and a best by date of 4/11/06 are printed on the label. This is a pretty fresh one, only ten days in the bottle. Definately has potential, but it lacks the character necessary for me to rate it higher, as I would like to do.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.62/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at the RDU airport main terminal - Vintage Wines store, but always 4 good micros on draft. Server didnt seem too excited about walking me through the though.

But I digress - pours a medium amber, with good foam, and a decent stickiness. Strong pine/grassy smell. Taste is a firm hop, but with a good malt balance that blends in really nicely. Good carbonation - the whole beer comes together very nicely. Very drinkable, and an excellent pre-flight option.

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Photo of prototypic
2.88/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Carolina India Pale Ale pours a lighter gold color with slight orange highlights. It’s slightly hazy and has a few yeasty particles swimming about. Backlighting gives it more of an orange look. It’s capped with a soft white head that rises to just over a finger in height. Retention is on the shorter side and lacing is extremely light. It’s not bad, not quite good either.

The nose is honestly a little below average. It’s weak and desperately needs more strength. It kicks off with a bit of earthy scent, which is interesting. You don’t encounter than in an IPA often. It’s a little bread-like, as well. Hops don’t come through very strong at all. There are some faint fruity notes of orange and grapefruit. For an American IPA, that’s not a good thing. Alcohol is very light and is mostly unnoticeable. Meh.

The flavor is slightly better. Enough to warrant a score bump. The malt base is bready and biscuit-like. There’s a touch of sweet caramel, but it’s subtle. Hops have a light citrus grapefruit and orange flavor. They’re not all that strong. It is a little bitter, but not all that much. It has an interesting earthy flavor. It is somewhat reminiscent of aspirin, as well. Kind of odd. Alcohol is light and doesn’t come through strong. Finishes with a biscuity, slightly bitter flavor.

The body is lighter. Carbonation seems light and soft, but it’s too thin to attain any level of smoothness. I’m splitting the growler, but could probably finish it solo. Although, I’m not sure I’d want to.

Carolina India Pale Ale is an okay release from Carolina Brewing Company, but does very little to distinguish itself amongst a sea of great American IPAs. It’s just not all that hoppy or tasty. Needs work in that department. It’s not horrible and might be worth a try. That’s about it.

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Photo of hopdog
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle.

Poured a medium medium amber color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of citrus, light pine and a little earthy. Tastes of citrus / oranges and light caramel. Very lightly bitter. I found this to be thinner and weaker for an IPA.

Notes from: 10/20/06

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Photo of wedge
4.35/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clean amber color with a really nice looking sticky, soapy off-white head that leaves behind some loose lace. Ahhh...the aroma actually brings memories of Ipswitch IPA - dark, earthy hops, citrus and sap with a more than solid malt backing. Flavor is delicious as well with its oily floral hop profile and a generous amount of gritty malts to balance it perfectly. Real nice texture in the mouth, medium-fullish with a rock solid bitterness.

Wow, I have a feeling this one's going to be in my fridge a lot. I could picture a Mercury Brewing label on this. It doesn't go out of its way to be over-the-top, out of control hoppy, it just has fantastic balance.

An excellent IPA with influences in both America and England.

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Photo of Vancer
3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice beer sent my way via trade with limesmut!. Cool!.

Decent drinking IPA from the Carolinas’, this would work well in the summer heat.

Clear amber pour, lacey pop top of ivory – sheds lace all the way down the Bitburger pilsner glass. Aroma reminded me of a West Coast IPA – pretty darn piney with a good dose of citrus. Quaff added some woody vine – although just a touch raspy.

Medium bodied and enjoyable for the short time it was with me.

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Photo of sulldaddy
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chilled bottle courtesy of aksmokedporter. Thx!!
I am pouring into a pint glass.
The beer pours a clear copper color with a fluffy off white head foaming up 2 cm and sticking to the glass nicely as it fades to a sturdy surface layer.
Aroma is lite and there are floral hops present mixing with some fruity sweetness like an apricot hard candy. Slightly citrusy orange mostly too.
First sip reveals a brief hit of sweet caramel and some husky grain that is overtaken by a bitey hop bitterness that simply tastes like hops. A little bit of orange peel and rind as well. Body is average to lite and carbonation is mild.
The beer is clean and refreshing and leaves a nice drying hop bite in my mouth after each swallow. The beer is very easy to drink but could be a little more complex on the hops.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.35/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(800th review)

The beer poured into the glass crystal clear golden with a slight amber hue. The head was off-white tall and frothy lasting well to coat the glass.

The aroma was nicely malty with a floral and fruity hop aroma and a slight DMS. The hop aroma was low and citrusy with a caramel and slight toffee malt presence.

The flavor was malty and nicely accomplished with an excellent hop and malt balance. The beer starts with some caramel and malty sweetness on the palate but that is quickly defeated by the hop bittering and later by the hop flavor. The hops are slightly grassy and citrusy and the flavor is very well done with the hops not being overly assertive.

The finish was just dry with lasting hop bittering and grassy/citrusy hop flavor long into the aftertaste and beyond. The body was medium and very well done. The combination of all the factors created an incredibly drinkable beer.

12 ounce bottle from a sixer purchased at the brewery (thanks Mark G!). This was last year's summer recipe http://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/1499/17818/, but I enjoyed this beer much much more!

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Photo of BigBry
3.67/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle from Total Wine and More, Raleigh.
Blue label with a yellow, roaring lion (same as above). Best by 4/25/09, "CBC turned ten years old on July 3, 2005. All it takes is a liver and a dream!"
Dark copper orange color, no head just a few floating bubbles. Some floral hop aromas, hoppy but not really as strong as expected from an IPA. Hop bite to start, but lots of sweetness in the end.
Mouthfeel is a bit thin and light. Good drinkability for a lighter hopped IPA. Not the overwelming big hop flavor from other IPAs.
Enjoyable, enjoy the subtle hops flavor.

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Carolina India Pale Ale from Carolina Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 96 ratings.