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Burton Bridge Empire India Pale Ale - Burton Bridge Brewery

Not Rated.
Burton Bridge Empire India Pale AleBurton Bridge Empire India Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

158 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 158
Reviews: 132
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 17.83%
Wants: 13
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Burton Bridge Brewery
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 158 | Reviews: 132 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by beerman599:
Photo of beerman599
2.95/5  rDev -17.8%

tried several bottle of this ale and all were bad ! then i took a bottle of this with me on a trip to burton no trent and stayed at the Queen's in whitch is across the steet from the brewery and asked to see the brewer and was told in no uncertein terms that thay see no one and was
even told of another brewer that was more freindly to visit! we never even
had a chance to discuss the bottling problem oh well i just won't buy anymore bottles

beerman599, Jun 04, 2003
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

This pours a deep orange with a huge sticky orange tinted head,aroma is of orange rind and slightly geranium like.I got a hint of orange and mineral right off the bat with this with a dryish finish this a kick in the ass IPA for sure.Why the low ratings on this beer I think it is a very well made beer,I guess Iam just different.

oberon, Sep 17, 2003
Photo of RoyalT
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%

Appearance – This one is a pure but dull orange in color with a monster, explosive head.

Smell – This aroma is about 60% malts and 40% bitter hops. The hops are very herbal with some very light grapefruity notes. The malts are slightly nutty with some raw sugars and maybe a bit of caramel.

Taste – The bitter hops here get bigger as the ale opens up. The malts have some sugar to them but are mostly reserved. This is a balanced brew. The flavors aren’t explosive but, like the history of the style supposes, will last for a long time.

Mouthfeel – This one is medium-bodied and overly-carbonated. The flavors though are very blended and smooth like a cask-conditioned ale.

Drinkability – The fizzy carbonation kept this from going down well, but it’s a nice example of the style.

RoyalT, Mar 17, 2005
Photo of sgoodship
3.43/5  rDev -4.5%

My wife picked me up a 500ml bottle form Whole Foods.

A: 2 finger bubbly off-white head with very little effort. Dissipates to a bubbly ring. Hazy coppery color - like a murky raw cider. Color becomes more amber toward the bottom. Yeast sediment visible from second pour.

S: A hint of citrus and fruity hop but plenty of sweet malt coming through the nose. A hint of mineral and metal.

T: Sour fruit taste in the apricot area rather than citrus. Diacetyl comes through loud and clear with a hint of alcohol. This is followed by some bready malt. It ends dry and with a bitterness - not that aggressive which is usual for the style.

M: Light body with a medium carbonation that is tingly in the mouth. Pretty clean and refreshing.

D: Not a fan of the sour/tart fruit. Good balance as per the style and interesting complexity for an IPA. Way too much diacetyl for my liking, especially toward the end.

sgoodship, Jul 08, 2009
Photo of Jason
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Presentation: 16.9 oz brown bottle, no freshness date though being bottle conditioned and boasting 7.5% abv it has a longer shelf life than a normal brew.

Appearance: Deep amber colour with a healthy white lace.

Smell: Very fruity with hints of apples and other mixed fruit ... hints of wood also in the nose.

Taste: Crisp and chewy with an aged alcohol feel and flavour, very fruity with an even woody character. Estery from the higher alcohols nearly take over semi assertive hops and a grainy malt taste peek in and out. Fruit tapers off a little towards the end leaving more grain and hop.

Notes: Is this what an IPA used to be? One would think so and so do we ... a powerful brew that could withstand any voyage. This brew is bottled after six months in the cask which adds to the rustic raw character. This beer goes over the top with its pushy fruity esters, not your run of the mill modern day IPA.

Jason, Apr 01, 2002
Photo of Billolick
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%

Medium sized bottle, w/o freshness dating. Very surprised by the low ratings for this brew. It pours very cloudy dull orangey amber, with a long lasting loose off white head, leaving loads of thick sticky lacing. The aroma is mildly of hops, glorious hops. This is a full flavor, quite hoppy brew. Nice to see a British brewery makes a beer with more then a delicate amount of hoppy character. This one has character and complexity. Perhaps the low ratings have to do with folks not getting a fresh bottle and shelf life issues with what appears to be an authentic cask/bottle conditioned ale. At any rate, I truly enjoyed the bottle I sampled. Get a fresh one and enjoy a bold and hoppy brew with better then average flavor and character.

Billolick, Aug 04, 2005
Photo of far333
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

This is an IPA? Am I too used to American IPA's or is this one a little off? Hazy honey color with an orange frothy head that lingers. The hop profile is very light. It's fresh and floral, but it is overpowered by a fruity, yeasty, doughey sweet flavor. The mouthfeel is round and creamy, but the flavor is off to me. Couldn't finish the glass. Too sweet for me.

far333, Aug 31, 2003
Photo of ADR
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%

Charged like a maniac, the bottle almost exploded on opening. Lots of head, even 4 minutes later. Very hazy orange-brown color, with some yeast chunks. Citrus rind and fruit in aroma. Very aggressively hopped, if this was made with cascades, it would be too much. As it is, its still surprisingly astringent for a U.K. I.P.A.....Malts are subdued, don't impart a lot of balance. This boy is a mouth wrangler, for hop lovers...I enjoyed it as refreshing (when nothing but hops will do) but prefer many others. Verges on notable alcohol.

ADR, Jul 01, 2002
Photo of DarrellK
4.5/5  rDev +25.3%

Bought the 500ml bottle from my top notch supplier and was ready to get the normal English, very good ale with a fancy labeled bottle. Once opened it was pleasantly surprised by a great aroma and tight fine foam rising from the open bottle.

Nose is full with a slight;y fruity note.

Head initially is bold and fine bubbled and settles to a more open bubble that is more head than the typical IPA. Color is about a 3 on a scale of 1=water 10=Molasses and is the usual IPA cloudy.

Mouth is full with a bit of a tingle at the back and finishes with a very nice warm slightly tart (fruity) experience.

It is a bit stong for a session beer so it is one that I would share with an experiences beer advocate and could appreciate that high quality of the brew.

It is called an IPA but it doesn't have the hoppiness of the IPA standard. This is not to say it is bad just hard to classify.

DarrellK, Apr 13, 2006
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.48/5  rDev -3.1%

(Served in a nonic)

A- This beer pours a hazy orange body with a thick beige butter cream head that rises above the glass. A few small bubbles pop of the base.

S- The cidery floral aroma during the pour takes on a wood quality with a growing brett note. The finish has a pine sawdust note to it.

T- The alcohol fusel bite is strong and takes on a cidery quality with a faint toasted malt hint in the background. There is a dandelion hop bitterness that turns into more of a brett character and hangs in the throat after each sip.

M- The medium-light mouthfeel has a scrubbing fizz that fills the mouth and an alcohol bite that finishes the beer.

O- This is a bit of an odd beer that is a bit too cidery and the alcohol is pretty hot with only the faintest of malt flavors. The hops are only really bitterness with no other character but the brett does shine through especially as the beer warms. There are more Flanders red characters that IPA qualities in this beer.

rhoadsrage, Jun 22, 2011
Photo of NJpadreFan
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%

Empire IPA

A- Deep cloudy orange with a thick foamy head. Mild lacing down the glass.
S-Sweet toffee malt, yeasty. Very mild aroma but intnsifies as it warms.
T- Mild sweet citrus hops, toffee malt, Fresh baked bread, earthy hops.
M- Mild up front with a slightly sweet body. Good dry finish with a touch of bitterness.

Overall- A favorite among a few of the "mug"gers at my pub, and rightfully so. Good solid English IPA that would be a pleasure drinking all day.

NJpadreFan, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of tastybeer
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%

Beautiful fluffy cream colored head. Big and froathy...about 2.5 inches yet somehow lace is lacking. Color is a welcoming warm orange gold, thickly hazy even though I tried to follow the directions and not pour much yeast in. What strikes me first is the resemblance of the nose to the 3 year aged Orval I had. Big, farm fresh, very floral, fruity, spicy, phenolic, yeasty with woodsy leaves. Certainly a lot going on. IPA-like but more Belgian I think. No problem there as I love Belgian style. In particular I pick up the smell of dandelions which seems very distinct to me, mixed with an apple orchard. Taste is spicy floral and bready with a good hop bitterness and a wacky sourness. Mouthfeel is smooth with a little gritty texture and excited by effervescent, belgian-like carbonation. This is very drinkble, for me anyways.

Good good. Strikingly like Orval with a soft IPA flare. I'd like to try the two side by side now.

tastybeer, Nov 13, 2006
Photo of nicnut45
3.38/5  rDev -5.8%

This beer pours a gusher. Couldnt pour it all at once. A slighlty hazy yellow orange color. The smell is a perfect mix of vanilla malt shake and green olives with some blue cheese as well. The taste is interesting to say the least. There is some nice vanilla whiskey like notes, no doubt from the oak. Bitterness seems to come more from the alcohol then the hops. This actually reminds me of a bourbon. more then likely because of the woody/oak like notes. Has a strange green olive like taste as well. Mouthfeel is light and highly carbonated. A strange beer, but the taste is intriguing and I find myself taking more sips. Not because it is good, just interesting. All in all im glad this style today isnt reminiscent of the past.

nicnut45, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of Griffith
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Griffith, Feb 02, 2012
Photo of cokes
4.35/5  rDev +21.2%

Cloudy ambered tan with an explosive sandstone head that grows for minutes after the pour. It eventually retreats and forms chasms and trenches.
Tangerine essence and slappy minerality on the nose.
Begins full of fruited doughballs. Peaches, dates, oranges and green grapes. Sweet butterscotch backing. Phenolic vanilla and citrus. Celery stalk bitterness with dusty chalk and booms of hard-water minerals. Ends with a upturn of herbal bitters. Pine nut/tinfoil/mango/woody shrub aftertaste.
Slow carbonated and cask-esque in the mouth. Alcohol is not noted aside from some parching fumes around the swallow.
This is a beauty of a raw, old school, funky-ass EIPA.
Get up and dance.

cokes, Jul 14, 2004
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev +11.4%

had the head of an IPA and the body of a pale.Grapefruit taste, nicely bitter, not overly.Smooth creamy.Very well done English
Nice aftertaste,some malts.Not very complex, couldn’t drink a whole bottle.Aggressive carbonation and alcohol presence, otherwise I applaud the craftsmanship.

Sammy, Dec 23, 2005
Photo of cliff1066
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

cliff1066, Dec 09, 2012
Photo of PretzelCity
3.43/5  rDev -4.5%

This is the first beer in Roger Protz's "300 Beers to Drink Before You Die" book. Poured nicely into my glass a deep golden honey color with a mighty head about three fingers thick. Tight, crisp bubbles gave this beer something of a champagne feel at first. The first taste is interesting, lots of oak, and citrus hops seem to dominate the beer. The taste and mouthfeel remind me of Cantillon Iris. Overall this is a very interesting brew, true to the English IPA style (although I liked Three Floyds Blackheart better). Worth a try if not for the history alone.

PretzelCity, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of nickd717
3.23/5  rDev -10%

500ml bottle from K&L.

Pours a slightly hazed reddish-amber color with a huge, lasting, foamy white head.

The aroma is...brett? Really? Didn't expect that. Besides that, there are floral hop notes and sweet hints of malt.

The flavor is definitely bretty and funky, slightly sour. Not sure whether that was intended or not. Besides that, there is caramel malt and a considerable hop bite that is herbal and ESB-like with some floral and grapefruit notes. Alcohol is a little more assertive than it probably should be at 7.5%. The finish is earthy and ever so slightly metallic.

Medium-bodied with some acidity on the palate and high carbonation from the infection and/or intentional addition of brett.

This is a decent brett IPA overall, although I'm not sure whether they were intending it to be one or not. I think I'm going to file this one in the "WTF" file for now. I'm not going to lie though - it kept me drinking it.

nickd717, Nov 10, 2010
Photo of Elemental
3.4/5  rDev -5.3%

Presentation - a 22 oz bottle with some great pictures on it representing the old british empire toops.

Appearance - a darker pale color, copper red almost like a light ESB. Bid head that does not fade

Smell - Good, not as floral as expected but still full of aroma, although almost a little sour

Taste - big and malty. a little over carbonated. Sweet from the start that slowly transitions into a light bitter flavor. Complementary malty and hopiness, not overly hopped. But still sour, can't get past the sour taste( I may have had a bad bottle or something).

Definately a good beer that is brewed in the traditional English way for an IPA. Other than the slightly sour smell and taste, an well rounded beer. I think I will try again and see if it still sour.....

Elemental, Aug 03, 2003
Photo of silver0rlead
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%

Pours a magnificent burnt orange with an incredible off white head that retains excellently, truly a looker. The aroma is also nice, with a big fruit character upfront (tangerine, lemon, apples, kiwi, and passion fruit), some citrusy and floral hops, biscuit and toasted bread and some ethanol. The flavor retains the intense fruit character (apples, tangerines, lemon rind, passionfruit, lime), as well as some nice citrus and floral hops that shine but dont overwhelm, toasted bread, slight sour citrus edge and moderate alcohol. The mouthfeel is chewy with light carbonation, and drinkability is descent but the alcohol is noticeable and warming. An interesting, complex and tasty IPA...supposedly the original IPA, and i can see why it was/is so popular.

silver0rlead, Jan 19, 2006
Photo of russpowell
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%

Picked this up at goebbels in Wichita. Happy to find something from one of my very favorite breweries when I lived in England ( most cask offering were amazing )

Pours apricot/amber with 4+ fingers of rocky sand colored head. Hazes a bit as the bottle is emptied. Crazy lacing & head retention

S: Leafy hops, not much else

T: Leafy hops, biscuitty malt & some sulphuric notes, plus a bit of citrus hops up front. More leafy hops, a touch of pears, & apricots, plus dryness as this warms. Finishes fruity, dry, a bit chalky even & with leafy hops

MF: Medium bodied with low carbonation & nice balance

Drinks easy for the abv, wished the hops & or malt stuck out a bit more, but a solid effort, this is probably much better on cask, I'm betting

russpowell, Jun 02, 2008
Photo of dgallina
4.33/5  rDev +20.6%

500ml brown bottle without freshness dating.

Pours good-looking cloudy tan, with very strong carbonation and a few fingers of sticky foam. Smells powerfully woody and fruity, with tangy alcohol and sweet pink grapefruit notes. The flavor is significantly drier, more grainy and woody in character. The sugary grapefruit center is balanced by toasted malt at the edges. Finishes with a parched alcohol sharpness that suggests barrel-aged whiskey. The medium-rich body is somewhat oily and over-carbonated for something this strong. Drinks like a much larger beer than the labeled alcohol-by-volume would lead you to believe. An odd, but tasty, duck.

dgallina, Aug 01, 2008
Photo of emerge077
4.18/5  rDev +16.4%

First of all, this is the furthest thing from an American IPA as you can get. Once expectations are out of the way, this ale presents many unique qualities.

Definitely Brett in this one. This is my second pint in 2 days, and i'm really enjoying this stuff. It pours a hazy, tawny orange into a goblet-style glass. About 1/2 inch of foam fizzles up and settles to nothing, no lacing even. Looks like a cask ale in fact, and lo and behold, the label states it was cask aged 6 months before bottling.

Aroma is fantastic. Musty citrus, wet hay, barnyard funk more akin to Gueuze, but nowhere near as sharp or sour. Orval may find a distant cousin in this unique English IPA. There's also a mildly cheesy, aged hop presence.

Flavors of apricot, almond, and citrus rind. Toffee like malt, but only in texture and not sweetness. Dry and bitter finish. Fruitiness is very unique, in that it has a certain fullness and distinct apricot/persimmon taste. A mild underlying spice from the hops. Brett adds another distinctive facet of restrained wildness. Must be some funky casks that are used for aging!

Smooth with low carbonation, mellow with mild bitterness in the finish. Easy to finish the bottle, but it must be savored. Cheers...

EDIT 2008: 2 bottles I purchased in Madison weren't similar at all to my first review. Hoping they were just old, and that the funky spice shows up in future bottles. Edit #2: Hit or miss with this one, i've had one tasty one, and two so-so bottles from the same place, same purchase. Seems there's alot of variability with this, but i'll continue to drink it, because when it's good, it's a really captivating beer...pretty similar to Wild Devil.

emerge077, Dec 10, 2007
Photo of 4Socialanxiety
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

4Socialanxiety, Jul 04, 2012
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Burton Bridge Empire India Pale Ale from Burton Bridge Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.