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Atwater Grand Circus IPA - Atwater Brewery

Not Rated.
Atwater Grand Circus IPAAtwater Grand Circus IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

73 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 73
Hads: 321
Avg: 3.12
pDev: 41.99%
Wants: 3
Gots: 46 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Atwater Brewery visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DrDoitchbig on 08-22-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 73 | Hads: 321
Photo of Evan1356
1.59/5  rDev -49%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.25

Never again...glad this is a session IPA and not a main brew. Atwater...please never do this one again, I don't know how you made a 4.2% beer so bitter and so crude that it's not even an easy drinking summer beer but you did. Would have rather drank a Budweiser...

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.13/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A: Pours a very lightly hazy medium reddish copper in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation and some amber highlights. The beer has a two finger tall sudsy foamy beige head that slowly reduces to to mottled pillowy finger thick layer covering the entire surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of herbal, floral, grassy, and citrus/grapefruit rind hops over the top of a light aroma of caramel malts.

T: Upfront there is a light to moderate flavor of caramel malts with only a minimal amount of sweetness. That is followed by slightly stronger than moderate flavors of herbal, floral, grassy, and citrus/grapefruit rind hops which contribute a light to moderate amount of lingering bitterness.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin/watery with a hint of dryness in the finish.

O: An okay but not great session IPA - hops flavors and aromas are a little muddled and the mouthfeel is a little watery. Easy to drink but not enjoyable enough for me to want to get again.

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Photo of jamescarlton989
3.57/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The smell and look of this beer are deceiving; The taste is very dry with faint caramel notes and a strong hop flavor. I prefer beers with a strong hop flavor, so this beer is one of my favorites; however i wouldn't recommend it to someone that prefers a sweeter beer with less hops. Overall i think this a beer you should try if it fits your preferred criteria. It's not a beer that i could drink all night because of the strong hop flavor, but it's a great starter beer.

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Photo of LoveOregonBeer12
1.48/5  rDev -52.6%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

This is not an IPA, and not a good beer overall. No defining hop character for this style. Decent copper color, but the smell and taste is quite a disappointment.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.24/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A: Pours a hazy golden orange with a thick, pillowy off-white head.

S: Aromas of minerals, lemon, lime, bitter orange, caramel, and biscuit are just barely detectable on the nose.

T: Mild notes of lemon, lime, kumquat, herbs, bitter orange, grass, grapefruit, chalk, minerals, biscuits, crackers, and caramel flit across the palate. The finish is very mild and brief, offering lingering sensations of tart citrus, caramel, and biscuits.

M: Very light-bodied and dry. Carbonation is firm and slightly prickly. This ale is easy to drink, but it's a little too dry.

O: This ale is not great, but also not horrible. I think it would work far better as an APA than as an IPA. A very mediocre effort as far as session IPAs go.

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Photo of Tripel_Threat
3.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured into pilsner glass, provides for a couple inches of delicate, bubbly head that's here and gone, settles to a centimeter white, frothy cap with good retention. Some spots of lacing, but not much to write home about. Color is a gorgeous, glowing amber copper. If appearance were everything, this would be one of the best.

Aroma is grass, citrus, bread. Taste is not much. There's a hoppy bite, but otherwise, the plot is stretched thin. Mouthfeel is thin, too. I see why this one is sessionable, but there's other session IPAs that pack a bigger taste punch. If it wasn't part of a variety pack, I wouldn't have bought this one.

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Photo of bushbeer75
3.14/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12 oz brown bottle

Atwater Grand Circus IPA poured into my mug a deep gold hue producing a foamy 1-finger head that faded slowly leaving behind very spotty lacing. The aroma is one of citrus and smells fresh. The taste is hop dominate with [very] light caramel and bready notes. Mouth feel is light to light-medium bodied [at the best], has medium carbonation, that is crisp but almost watery - a little disappointing.

Overall, if it wasn't for the hops Grand Circus IPA would not have much flavor. However, this thin flavor does make the IPA not filling and easy to drink. The flavor is a little thin for me. There are better American IPA's.

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Photo of superspak
3.48/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled in 10/2014. Pours slightly hazy orange/copper color with a 2 finger dense and rocky off white head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, floral, grass, pine, caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/floral hops and moderate dark/bready malt balance; with solid strength. Taste of grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of pine/grassy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, lemon/orange peel, pine, caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Nice complexity and robustness of citrus/pine hops and moderate bready malt balance; with a good malt/bitterness balance and minimal cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, crisp, and moderately resinous/chalky mouthfeel that is okay. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish as expected of 4.2%. Overall this is a solid IPA. All around good robustness, balance, and complexity of citrus/pine hops and moderate dark/bready malt balance; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A fairly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Sir-Buddly-Longfellow
1.25/5  rDev -59.9%

Kept it in the fridge til a buddy traded so he could try it. He thought it was "ok" at best. In my opinion, it wasn't drinkable. But I have high expectations when I see an IPA label.

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Photo of Tone
3.72/5  rDev +19.2%

Pours hazy, copper color. One inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of caramel malt, sweet malt, hops, slight pine, and a hint of biscuit. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, caramel malt, pine, hops, hint of biscuit, and a hint of metallic. Overall, good appearance, aroma, body, and blend.

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Photo of pat61
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Drank this one about six weeks old. Citrus and hops on the nose with a touch of grass.
Brilliant amber, the rocky foam off-white cap takes up 40% of the glass leaving lacy designs as it slowly descends.
Palate: Citrus with some bitter citrus rind over light malty sweetness that dries out in the finish with a slight astringency from the hops.
Medium to a little above on the carbonation, medium body

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Photo of allengarvin
3.82/5  rDev +22.4%

A: 3.75 - Orange-amber colored beer with a small but dense, smooth head across the top.
S: 3.50 - Very faint aroma, but it does have some pleasant citrus notes with maybe a little very light malt.
T: 4.0 - Good flavor: hoppiness is not too much for the strength and malt, unlike many session IPAs. Hop taste tends to the citrus. Malt is light but detectable, and adds a touch of sweetness to the finish. Clean tasting otherwise.
M: 3.5 - Soft, creamy texture, though watery.
O: 4.0 - Easy drinking, low alcohol, hoppy. I would probably call it an English pale ale myself, where it would at the hoppy end of the spectrum, but that doesn't sell like "session IPA".

Weightings (percentages): 20, 20, 40, 5, 15. Avg: 3.82

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Photo of Bitterbill
2.66/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2

Another offering thanks to Trent!

It pours a clear copper with a 2 finger head of foam.

I'm getting a lot of caramel malt in the nose with no noticeable bitterness.

Very buttery taste up front and throughout. Some butterscotch as well as a rather unpleasant "bitterness" that totally ruins it, not that the buttery flavour was all too exciting.

Light bodied, nice carbonation, so no complaints there.

Wow, this is bad but I'm always glad to give a beer a try.

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Photo of razorsdescent
1.69/5  rDev -45.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 1.75

Wow, it has been a while since I have felt so compelled to write a negative review.

Firstly, if you are going to have your "IPA" weigh in at 4.2% ABV, do us all a favor and have the basic decency to label it so that people like me don't waste our time and money on a light beer that has little flavor. I was suspicious because of the low price at my local beer store, but it said IPA and was something I had never tried before, my curiosity and adventurous nature kept me from just getting a standby pack of DFH 60 Minute IPA. Woe betide my decision, this is truly a terrible beer.

This is not an IPA, this is some sort of weird session pale ale, and not a good one at that. The basic appearance is lighter than ?I expected. The head is a lovely shade of white, which kept it from losing points there. The smell is weak and faintly pine scented. The taste is an unsurprising follow up to the smell. Water with Pinesol, slightly astringent. I have tasted first try's from home brewers that are leagues ahead of this piss-water. Mouthfeel was thin and watery.

Overall this is a very poor offering. Bad enough that I will not be throwing any money at these guys in the future. I tried to rate this beer fairly and still the results are not pretty. I would rather take a PBR any day over this stuff.

Do yourself a favor and avoid this offering. There are better and smaller breweries who could use the business and which would actually provide you with a beer worth drinking.

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Photo of barczar
3.02/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy deep golden with an ivory head that dissipates fairly quickly.

Aroma reveals vegetal and diacetyl notes. May have some DMS issues.

The flavor confirmed the vegetal/DMS notes, along with grapefruit pith underpinnings, which helped to distract, somewhat. The finish is fairly bitter.

Body and carbonation are moderate.

Fairly weak in malt character, and the DMS notes are unfortunate. The balance was more toward bittering hops than flavoring, so it doesn't really suit my palate.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a 12oz can into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color, with a large foamy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick but spotty lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains citrus, a good amount of hops and light caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out with some very mildly sweet flavors of citrus and caramel. Then a weak hops bitterness for the style comes in. The malt character is also thin and while there isn’t any harshness to it, there isn’t much balance either. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Crisp but watery, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty but not very flavorful, goes down easily but only because there isn’t much to the beer, not filling at all, very mild kick, not a good representation of style, this beer simply tastes like a very watered down version of an IPA that was mediocre to begin with.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.55/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a very hazy orange amber color with a thick billowy head of an orange tinted color. The head has a good level of retention, fading slowly over time to leave a nice level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is heaviest of a grainy smell along with some other hoppy aromas of a pine and a bit of grapefruit. Some grass and a little bit of a flowery smell are there as well creating a rather clean smelling aroma overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a grainy bread taste with a moderate level of a grassy hop flavor. The greasy flavors grow more intense as the taste advances and are joined by some earthy and more floral hop tastes more toward the end. Overall the brew is on the drier side with just some hints of caramel sweetness upfront, which soon fade from the taste, leaving only the the bready flavors that are present upfront to accompany the hop to the end. With the bready and all the hop that are left on the tongue at the end of the taste, one is left with a dry and somewhat crisp, decently hopped taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the thinner side with a carbonation level that is on the higher side. Both are great for the refreshing and crisp flavors of the brew making it very drinkable, but yet not subduing the hop flavors too much so that they can’t be appreciated.

Overall – A rather easy drinking session IPA that isn’t dominated by just citrus hop tastes. At 4.2 % abv this is a nice session IPA and one that should be given much more cred.

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Photo of CodyNeely
2.75/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle poured into pint glass. No issue until the actual tasting came. Tasted almost like it had been watered down. I wasn't even a huge fan of the aftertaste which was almost skunky. I was disappointed because I've had other Atwater brews that I've enjoyed.

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Photo of downeyj4
4/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought a case of this for a canoe trip. It's nice to have craft beer in a can. As for the beer, I think it should get a little more credit than it does. This is an outstanding session IPA. It has all the hop you want in aroma with a piney taste. Take it for what its worth. If your looking to get that hop flavor with lower ABV and price, this a good beer to pick up.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.74/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

That's a pretty dull label for such an allegedly badass tent-enclosed spectacle... Anyway, this stuff pours a clear auburn-bronze topped by a finger of off-white foam. The nose comprises flowers, light grass, white bread, and a twinge of orange peel. The taste brings in more of the same, along with a healthy dose of dust and must, making everything just come out tasting dirty and funky. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly watery feel. Overall, this was a pretty sad IPA, one that just tasted off despite its freshness. Boo this.

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Photo of hackmann
3.04/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Appearance: deep cloudy amber body with almost a two finger bone white head that leaves some lacing behind with each sip

Aroma: faint floral grassy hops and white bread

Flavors: sort of non-descript hops and malts; I’ll do my best, citrus peel and pine bitterness, bready malts

Mouthfeel: a fine fizzy carbonation feel, soft wool like texture, musty dusty dirty aftertaste

To the Point: they do call it a ‘session’ IPA; that is true … if you don’t care about flavor but want to drink a few beers with a low abv this is it; not for me even as a session beer

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Atwater Brewery : Grand Circus IPA

LOOK: Orange/bronze colored brew with a slight haze. White head forms, forms the ring, minimal lace.

SMELL: Aroma of floral and citrusy hops. Orange, green tea.

TASTE: Citrus, green tea, grass, mint. Hop flavors are good and have a distinct tea like element. Where's the body? Where's the malt? Besides a watery caramel flavor, this beer is just about flat and one dimensional.

FEEL: Light bodied, watery, under carbonated. Pretty lame feel, which is sad. With any body this could have a lot of potential. Thin.

OVERALL: Unless you must have it, pass on this.

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Photo of pecokid
4.32/5  rDev +38.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I am really surprised with the low “71” rating on this beer. I only had a sample at O’Rielly’s in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania but I was impressed. There is a lot of complex hopiness going on with this beer. I got a nice spicy peppery front end then a solid sweet finish. For only 4 plus / minus ABV it has a good balance. Now, the bartender did say this was this first poor of the day but I can’t believe oxidation from sitting in the lines would have improved this beer.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.34/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

I am really grateful that I have not had this beer before. At least I'll get a tick out of the deal. (I didn't check to see, but thought it was new to me.)

Thin and watery with a hop influence that shows and disappears rather quickly. Thin is the word that keeps coming to mind. And there is a dirty aftertaste with some odd orange on there. Dirty and thin. That sums it up for this one.

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Photo of SometimesIfart
3.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours a medium gold with a massive, constantly foaming white head that leaves a decent amount of lacing.

S - Rotten banana, lots of caramel malt and a slight amount of lemon zest.

T - Some rotten banana with a bit of creaminess, along with a small amount of malt and lemon zest.

M - Medium bodied with heavy carbonation. Tastes rotten as it sits.

O - Ehhhh, Sessionable? Nah. Worth trying? Nah. It's very average.

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Atwater Grand Circus IPA from Atwater Brewery
73 out of 100 based on 73 ratings.