Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

Atwater Grand Circus IPA | Atwater Brewery

76 Reviews
no score
Send samples
For Trade:
Atwater Grand Circus IPAAtwater Grand Circus IPA

Brewed by:
Atwater Brewery
Michigan, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by DrDoitchbig on 08-22-2011

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 76 | Ratings: 328
Photo of biboergosum
3.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz can. Procured in Detroit, and with downtown Motown maps on the label, but the can indicates that this is brewed in Latrobe, PA.

This beer pours a clear medium copper amber hue, with a teeming amount of thin foamy cobwebbed head, which leaves some chunky bands of rainforest lace around the glass as it sinks away. It smells of strong biscuity malts, some tart breadiness, and earthy, leafy hops. The taste is crackery, biscuity malt, quite dry, like something you'd want to dip in soup. There's some leafy, herbal hops adding to the bitter side of things. The carbonation is moderate, and unobtrusive, the body near medium weight, and a little too clingy and clammy to proclaim as smooth. It finishes malty, but not sweet, the dryness abetted by some lingering herbal hops.

No way, no how should this be labeled as an IPA, of any sort. Now tell me ESB, and we can talk, mostly about how to make this bitter a whole lot better.

 934 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Yay cans, tasty crack cans...

Anyways, pours a huge pasty white fluffy head of more than 2 fingers, fades semi slowly with nice lacing, over hazy sediment yeast chunk filled orange colored, its really full of sediment.

Nose has some hops, but not much. Candy hops, a bit fruity and hint earthy grassy, slightest touch of citrus but more like citrus candy.

Taste comes fairly bland as well, slight touch of a malty sweetness, but then some hops, candy hops, hint of grassy hops and citrus, bit fruity, and fairly light overall. Finish is drier a decent bitterness, a lot more bitterness than actual hop flavor with no malts to really balance and lack of nice distinct hop flavors.

Mouth is med to lighter bodied, decent carb at least.

Overall meh, not really much going for it except a fairly cheap IPA in a can, cause everyone loves it in the can.

 854 characters

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.

 944 characters

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.

 619 characters

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.

 1,498 characters

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.

 1,117 characters

Photo of smcolw
3.73/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lumpy head with some webby lace. Rocky settlement. Cloudy, pale amber color.

Clean pale malt smell with a shallow level of hop--slightly off from the IPA expectation.

Interesting pineapple hop flavor, some pepper and grapefruit. Starts with a brief, neutral malt. Good bitterness swallow with a long aftertaste of pepper. Unremarkable body with a carbonation that is as expected.

 381 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep copper at Smokin' Joe's the label says it's brewed in Latrobe. Actually pale copper crystal clear with a bright white head flowing thick. Head has trickled thin lacing layers with notes of grassy pale copper. The body although slightly stick with hop oils doesn't hold up to most big or light IPAs, medium body with a moderate level of carbonation flavor isn't bad at all actually quite hoppy and held together quite nicely for a bigger beer from up north in Michigan.

 482 characters

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.

 388 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.01/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Many, many thanks to Another6Pack for sending me a CAN Care package recently! I noticed that I had one of his Wants and he sent me a four-pack of some really nifty CANs. I CAN always review a new CAN in support of The CANquest (TM) ...

From the CAN: "We drink all we [CAN] and then sell the rest."; "Our 'Session' India Pale Ale"; "Kick back, relax and enjoy a cold craft beer in your city's 'Grand Circus Park'."; "Beer is good."; plus an underlay of the map of downtown Detroit.

Too bad about the allusion to a Detroit park - I thought that it referred to my classroom.

The Crack was as loud in the deafening silence of my kitchen as any in recent memory. I decided to go with a heavy-handed Glug into a Sam. Adams Perfect Pint glass just to see if I could get a cascade to result. CAN I get an "Amen, brother!" from the CANstituency? I was soon looking at two-plus fingers of rocky, eggshell-white head that was fading as quickly as red ink in the sunlight. Bye! The beer was a deep golden-yellow with NE-quality clarity and I suddenly wished for a serving of French Fries. Did the color remind me of cooking oil? Or perhaps of golden fries themselves? Either way, one should never hold back anything that comes to mind in doing a review. I personally dig the stream-of-consciousness rave that seems to be the trademark of my reviews. Now, where was I before I got lorded over by some western distraction ...? Oh yes, color. In the meantime, the head had fallen to the point that I could get my nose in there to root for truffles without the fear of foam in my sinuses. I was a trained Locker Leader (firefighter) in the Navy and one time, in extinguishing an oil fire, I did get some of the AFFF in my mask. Speaking of oil, did I mention that I am hungry for French Fries? The nose was pretty weak for an AIPA. Hoppy? Sure, but not enough to qualify as an AIPA. I have to go with El Tigre from Calgary in that this would be a passable ESB and a below-par AIPA. The nose could not seem to allow the malt to get out of the way of the tea-like hops. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium and the taste was of minty hops on a chewing gum scale. This was my second go-'round tonight with an AIPA with a substandard hops presence. Grrr. Finish was as boring as one of those ponderous documentaries on PBS on Sunday afternoon in which some British talking head goes on and on about the merits of French Fries. Hell, they're not even French! They are originally les pommes frites from Belgium and I still want some. I want them more than I want another of this beer. I CAN only hope that this review helps you in your personal quest for better beer.

 2,642 characters

Photo of Billolick
3.41/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce can, purchased as part of a 12 pack, at American Bev. in Brooklyn, NY ($12.99)

Pours lightly clouded almond amber, delicate off white head, leaves a thicker film, collar and fine mostly low lacing.

Nose is of some grassy hops and a hint of malt.

This is an easy drinking, lighter and refreshing IPA. Moderate hop presence, balanced by a nearly equal malty base. Lighter mouthfeel, with a watery note.

Nothing special, but enjoyable enough. Worthy summer sesioner

 475 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
2.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle and served in a tumbler pint, the beer is a hazy, pale, somewhat lackluster copper coloring with a foamy, low profile, sparse, white filmy head. The head starts promising, at around an inch and a half, but quickly settles out. Well balanced nose of light citrus sweetness and light, green, fresh hops aromas. Flavors are strong initially, but a bit watery overall, with a strong roasted and dry hopped flavor profile that has some char character. The hops go fairly unbalanced, with only a slight hint of the citrus that was present in the nose. Decent cling along the glass while you drink, which is one of the few redeeming qualities. The aftertaste is resiny and strongly roasted, with a drying feel that makes the finish quick and clean. A slight tang left behind on the tongue, but not much else at the end.

 833 characters

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

Atwater puts out some decent beers...this is no exception. The Grand Circus is a nive IPA. Pours an orange clear copper color with 1/4 finger head that is lacing. The smell has mostly bitter hops with slight citrus. The taste follows suite....very bitter towards the end that eventually zings hints of Grapefruit. The mouthfeel is mdeium to light body with good carbonation. Overall its good.

 392 characters

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.

 385 characters

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.

 600 characters

Photo of tone77
3.7/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to the legend woodychandler for yet another canned beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a orange/brownish color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of hops and citrus. Taste is a good balance of hops and malts, not overpowering, slightly bitter with some mild citrus notes. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

 339 characters

Photo of puboflyons
3.11/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From the 12 fl. oz. can stamped 1062-1523. Sampled on September 23, 2012.

It pours a slightly hazy golden copper-yellow with a tremendous amount of fluffy white head that fizzles after a minute.

Loads of grains on the nose but fewer hops. Pretty average in the aroma department.

The body falls into the light to medium range and it is smooth on my tongue.

The taste is much like the aroma with a big up front grainy character while the earthy hops are noticeable but somewhat played down. One of the milder IPA"s I have had in awhile.

 538 characters

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.

 465 characters

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

 401 characters

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.

 495 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
3.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got a bottle of this for a dollar bottled in August 2012

A - Quite dark for a session IPA. Sort of hazy amber brown with quite a nice 1/2 inch of fluffy white head.

S - More herbal than I wanted but a nice bittering pine with equal balance.

T - Eh not bad it's simple enough with a mild acidic sort of hop profile that seems watered down. Kind of boring really.

M - Light to medium I question session ability

Overall a very forgettable session IPA not even worth a dollar.

 477 characters

Photo of Brad007
3.53/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A buddy brought this back for me. Never heard of this brewery.

Pours a sweet (not literally) golden color with a frothy white head into my glass. It's an IPA! I got a chuckle out of the ABV.

Grassy hops that have a hint of citrus. Sweet malt underneath too. Smells about right for something of this ABV.

Here's where it gets tricky. Hops are not that strong upfront and I get the suspicion that this may be an older can? No canning date or year codes. Just a bit of sweet malt underneath too. I think this is closer to the English style IPA.

Lingering grassy hops and burnt caramel from the malt. Not bad but not great.

You could probably do better for the style. I'd like to see what else they have to offer. Still, it quenched my thirst.

 744 characters

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.

 1,619 characters

Photo of Brenden
3.83/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a hazed dark orange-brown, beyond amber but not quite copper, with a bronzed sort of darkness in the depth. A nearly pure white head grows to 2 fingers in height and shows stick, retaining one finger the entire time after it recedes and leaving lacing in broken sheeting down the glass.
A nice raw, leafy, green sort of hops bitterness with a citrus element is what greets the nose. Another sniff gives off more of the rich, raw, pure hops cone aromas.
The flavor is pretty good, but it seems more effort was put into hopping for the aromatics.
Crispness and smoothness are on par with a light carbonation in a medium body that sustains itself well.

 663 characters

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.

 724 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Atwater Grand Circus IPA from Atwater Brewery
73 out of 100 based on 76 ratings.