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Epic Mayhem - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Epic MayhemEpic Mayhem

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

35 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 35
Hads: 53
Avg: 3.88
pDev: 10.31%
Wants: 4
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: VitBAficionado on 05-06-2009

This isn't your ordinary beer du jour. It is so packed with hop-fuelled flavour and aroma that it will invigorate even the hardest hop-head. Brewed as our special festival beer, only available for a limited time, Mayhem will alter your beer reality forever. Enjoy this road to hoppyness with caution.
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Reviews: 35 | Hads: 53
Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.59/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A 500ml bottle with an illegible BB date, though I'm pretty certain this is well past its best. Purchased ages ago from a webshop and stored in my garage. Here's hoping it's still alright. The label describes it as a limited edition festival beer brewed with a ton of hops.

Poured into a Duvel tulip. A clear coppery-orange hue with good carbonation. Produces a large head of creamy off-white foam that lasts for a few minutes before subsiding to a patchy surface layer. Aroma of caramel malt with notes of pine resin, weed, barley sugar, earthy yeast, stewed hops and mild cardboard. Due to its age there is a lack of finesse, but it still smells decent.

Tastes of intensely resinous pine with a powerful bitter finish. Notes of pine resin, dank weed, caramel malt, faint grain, stewed hops, earthy yeast and subtle cardboard. A slight malty sweetness and a twinge of booze in the background. A strident, spicy bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth and tingly, with effervescent carbonation and decent body. Somewhat astringent, followed by an aftertaste of pine resin, stewed hops and caramel malt.

Pretty good despite the age of the bottle. Looks alright - the colour is great. Aroma and flavour are dominated by piny hops and caramel malt, with some mild off-notes lurking in the background. Body is OK. Overall, the hop character of this brew has faded and lost its breadth and subtlety - all that remains are the most dominant notes. However, it retains balance and enough flavour to make it enjoyable. I dare say this is superb when fresh - give it a whirl if you come across it.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.64/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a three-finger off-white head that fades very slowly to a thin layer leaving a good lace. Crystal clear amber/copper color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Resin/bready nose. Flavor is malty, bready, some caramel like an IPA without the hops. $8.92 for a 500ml bottle from Tully’s Beer & Wine Wells, ME.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear medium to dark copper in color with some very light amounts of visible carbonation and some amber highlights. The beer has a finger tall sudsy beige head that reduces to a medium sized patch of large bubbles with a very thin film covering the remainder of the surface and a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: There is a light to moderate amount of toffee malt sweetness with stronger aromas of pine/resin, earthy, and citrus/grapefruit/orange hops that have just a touch of bitterness and alcohol.

T: Upfront there is a moderate amount of malts with some caramel and toffee sweetness. Following the malt sweetness there is a moderate to strong flavor of the hops - pine/resin, citrus/grapefruit/orange, and earthy hops are present in the taste. Light amounts of alcohol are also present near the finish along with a light to moderate amount of lingering bitterness.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin with light amounts of dryness in the finish.

O: This is a very interesting blend of styles - American Strong Ale with a decent amount of hops to it which is more like an IPA. Unfortunately it is not the easiest to drink as the alcohol could be a little more well hidden and the mouthfeel is just slightly off (for me).

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear amber-orange with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of grapefruit, tropical, citrus, and floral hops with some sweet caramel malts.

T - Starts off with a mix of grapefruit and other tropical hops, some bitterness, and some sweet caramel malts. Through the middle, some floral and piney hops come through with some more bitterness and some bready malts. The finish is a mix of pineapple, grapefruit, and pine hops with some sweet bready malts.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a dry and bitter finish.

D - Very drinkable. Good hop and malt balance with some good bitterness and body for overall balance.

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3.91/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle. Tumbler glass. Enjoyed on may´12. Deep amber color, crystal clear appearance. Off-white, creamy froth. Lasting & spotty head. Flowers, yeast & mildy malts to the nose. Gentle maltiness at first sip followed by dry bitter hoppiness. Medium body, moderate carbonation. Some astringency & quince notes into the finish. Resiny aftertaste. Refreshing & nice drinkability.

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Photo of Offa
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber, small off-white head soon thins to ring.

Aroma is caramelized brandy, candied orange and grapefruit.

Taste is dry caramelized bread crust, candied orange and grapefruit, juicy yeastiness, light mineral. It is lightly bitter and spicy, nicely balanced. It is like a good English IPA, with plenty of yeasty and hoppy character but balanced bitterness.

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Photo of flyingpig
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber & a foamy, centimetre thick and foamy white head with good retention.

Lots of bitterness upfront along with a sweet pine and strong hops smell. There is also a little vanilla and dark malts but the hops dominate along with a general bittersweet aroma.

Hops and pine kick things off here, along with some piney bitterness and a good malt presence. There is a little citrus and some summer fruits along with a lingering bitterness.

Light in body and as mentioned before there is tonnes of hops in this one. The feel is a semi-smooth one with medium carbonation and a lingering bitter finish.

Very hoppy and quite like an IPA is a some nice pine hops and a few malts thrown in for good measure as well. The taste is surprisingly refreshing and nicer than I had imagined.

1001 Beers To Try Before You Die:

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Photo of ralree
2.89/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A: Translucent orange, really fizzy, bubbles stick to the glass like soda, head retention pretty short, lacing basically non-existant. Not a great looking beer.

S: Wonderful fruitiness, hops are good and strong, vanilla.

T: Hops again come through really nicely. Malt is light and easy on the tongue, but a little lacking. Breadiness throughout. The front has a nice fruitiness, like apricot. It needs more at the end to finish it off - tastes pretty bad after swallowing. Just OK.

M: A bit astringent, watery, light body, a bit overcarbonated. Not a winner here.

D: Overall, it's drinkable, but not something I'd crave often. It is very light, and might go well with a meal where one wants a lighter and more refreshing beer.

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Photo of Teleweizen2
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - this ale pours out a deep coppery amber with impressive clarity and a head of white foam.

S - a big yet balanced aroma of sweet caramel malts and bold citrusy hops.

T - starts out with a touch of caramel with a bright bitter orange peel flavor in the middle of the tongue which lingers long after the finish.

M - medium bodied with a slightly grainy texture and a light carbonation.

O - this is more of just a hoppy amber than a big american strong ale but it is still quite flavorful.

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Photo of flexabull
3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice bright amber color with a good white head.

Aromas are a nice mix between sweet caramel malts, light pine, resin and citrus.

Taste is bright and toasty, with light caramel sweetness. Finish is crisp and dry with some earthy hops.

Mouthfeel is not bad, crisp and snappy carbonation. But a touch thin.

Overall, this is a pretty nice beer. Reminds me more of a pale or an amber not a strong ale. Worth trying, but the price tag is pretty high for what you get. (understandable, considering the distance this has traveled)

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Photo of gford217
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle.

Pours A clear golden amber with a big frothy white head hat sticks to the sides and leaves a soapy cap.

Aroma is great with lots of juicy citrus, oranges and pineapples come to mind. There is some biscuity malts in there as well.

The taste is far less citrusy though there is still some lighter lemon notes and more grassy floral flavors and caramel malts. The taste is actually a little watery.

As mentioned above, the feel is lighter than I was expecting, slightly watery, with low carbonation.

This is a decent beer but I liked the Armageddon IPA better. The aroma promised great things but the flavor was just too light and watery.

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Photo of ckollias
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this 1 pint 9 fl oz bottled beer out of a large snifter.

A: A hazy orangish color with a one-finger white head that dissipates into a white wispy lace. A long white trail descends the glass.

S: Strong sweet fruity aromas arrive first. Orange, grapefruit, and other citrus fruits fill the nose.

T: Hop resins are plentiful on the palate. Flavor is slightly sweet and robustly bitter, with loads of hops. Toffee, caramel, and malt are nicely balance with orange, grapefruit, and hop flavors.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation. Dry on the mouth with the right amount of hops.

O: This was my first beer from EPIC, and I was mildly impressed. It is a well balanced beer and appropriate taste for the style.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.13/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The color is clear dark golden and the head slightly tan and medium large, thick and creamy. Rich lacings after the slow dissipation.

S: Rich American hops, both floral and bitter. Citric notes and lots of pine. Sweet caramel malt.

T: Bready sweet malts. The hops are more floral than bitter, but still bitter; citric and piney.

M: Aftertaste is medium long – both sweet and bitter. Body is medium and carbonation the same – very smooth though.

O: The balance between the hops and the malt is great. This one is highly gulpable.

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Photo of bark
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The smell is hoppy with lots of earthy-citric flavours. Some metal, lemons, grape fruits, gravy, grains and cereals. Medium strong to strong bitterness with some chemical flavours. It feels a bit heavy and dense.

The colour is amber (26 EBC) ; the liquid is clear. The two finger head is pale beige and compact. It sinks slowly leaving some lacing.

The taste is dry and medium bitter. The dry flowery hops make me more think of the UK than the US. The tastes are a bit reserved, but at the same time they are clean, very balanced and they work very well together. Some alcohol, dried fruits and a medium strong bitterness in the aftertaste as well as a very light metallic note.

The carbonation is strong, but not very long-lasting. The bubbles are small. The liquid is dry and light.

An "American strong ale"? No. I would classify it as an hoppy English pale ale. A quite good one, too.

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Photo of Tone
3.65/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy, copper color. 1/2 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and slight lacing. Smells of sweet malt, citrus hops, hint of roasted malt, slight alcohol, slight wood, hint of yeast, and a hint of pale malt. Fits the style of an American Strong Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of dry hops, citrus hops, sweet malt, slight pale malt, slight alcohol, and a hint of wood. Overall, good appearance, aroma, body, and blend. A good beer, but a little light to be an American 'Strong Ale'.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Still on the epic New Zealand beer trawl. This one seems a suitable addition.

Pours a very clear and quite light orange-golden colour. Head is firm, but large-bubbled, forming a little sudsy lacing, but not maintaining a particularly solid retention. Carbonation is fine and streaming. Body looks pleasantly heavy.

Nose is (and I can't help but describe it this way) classically Kiwi--those lovely hoppy but fresh and sharp aromas. This one perhaps owes a little more to the west coast of the USA, with some fruity citrus characters of Cascade and Chinook, but the freshness is delicious. A little sweaty grain grounds it, but it's all about the hops. Big props for that.

Nose is weirdly smooth and drinkable. It certainly doesn't have the robust hoppy bitterness I was expecting. Here, we get a smooth sweet and fresh fruit character, with a good dashing of toffeed sugar. Just enough bitterness comes through to balance it and stop it from being sickly. As a result, it ends up clean, light and supremely drinkable.

Great work on this one. A very nice late-hopped brew that gives plenty of hop flavour and a balanced palate that does not assault the senses. A clever and well thought-out brew from Epic, who are genuinely doing some exceptional things.

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Photo of rarbring
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer is clear light amber, an off-white firm high head that settles slowly and leaves tons of lacing.

The smell is citric and floral, red grape-fruit, clementines, then herbs and nettles. Initially a toffee sweetness.

A light sweet start, some brown sweet bread, the sour and bitter grape-fruits, some pine resin presence.

Medium high carbonation, small bubbles, rather soft and a medium body, a dry finish.

Rather good and well-balanced, very AIPA-ish to me.

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Photo of megahurts4
3.84/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Epic Mayhem

Appearance: cloudy amber, small head, and some good lacing.

Smell: hoppy floral notes with a hint of dark fruit.

Taste: floral hops and faint fruit.

Mouthfeel: light.

I expected this brew to be much stronger flavored based on the smell. It is light in body and taste, but flavors are true. It has a slight bitter finish due to the hops. It's lightness makes it a worthy session brew.

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Photo of joecast
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Loved the pale so am really looking forward to this.

Pours an inviting light amber color. Medium carbonation. Stable fluffy white head which leaves a good amount of lacing.

This is from NZ?! Impressive citrus, pine and floral hop aroma. Seriously intense stuff. A bit of underlying malt sweetness backs it up. It all comes together and makes a huge impact.

Smooth delivery of bitterness. This beer does very well to balance such large amounts of malt and hops. A steady hand and skillful brewer are evident (yes, I am a fan). The initial impression is one of a beer much bigger than what the abv states, but finishes as clean as your average pale ale.

Overall it's as well made and drinkable as any strong ale out there. Judging strictly by style and it might be the little brother of some of the others, but that by no means reflects the quality. EPIC!

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Photo of ADZA
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a see through light copper hue with decent carbonation that leaves behind a two finger head and some sporadic spots of clingy lacing,the aromas are piney hops,orange zest,grapefruit and some caramel,it has a nice sticky medium bodied mouthfeel which is carbonated just right and allows the tastes of orange marmalade,boiled candy,pineapple and caramel to be noticed and this is followed by a nice passionfruit bitterness,overall its a tasty drop that if wasnt so exspensive i would buy more of but in saying that ill still revisit it for sure.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to blutt59 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an orangish-yellow color with a large white head. The aroma is very fruity with a lot of orange and grapefruit notes, as well as some toffee and yeast notes. The flavor is toffee, orange citrus, apples and grapefruit. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very nice beer filled with a ton of tropical fruit.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours orange/amber with a creamy lasting head leaving lots of lacing.
Nose shows lots of tropical fruit, grapefruit, orange blossom. I'm guessing there's a fair bit of Nelson Sauvin in this from the passion-fruit as well. Malt is certainly not forgotten , lots of sweet clean crystal. Very nice!
The malt is stronger as a flavour with some toasty notes joining the sweet caramel. Similar hop character as in the aroma, but with more grapefruit and pine. Finishes quite sweet but with a matching bold bitterness.
Creamy carbonation, not too high, slick syrupy mouthfeel, awesome!

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Photo of farrago
3.65/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Close to two fingers of eggshell cream white, credible blend of smaller and larger bubbles, nothing special about its retention, skimps on the lacing. Transparent, clear brown to clay red influenced orange base, consistent hue throughout, only a few bubbles to be found. Grassy, herbaceous hops take over the nose quickly, with white pepper, pine needles and saline notes, rings metallic now and then too, the toffee, caramel maltiness weaves in and out, no steady presence, tart orange to white grapefruit citrus shaves off the sweetness of the apple, peach, apricot fruit, this latter a decidedly bit player. ends like someones crammed a handful of lichens and moss in your nostrils. Full-bodied, the carbonation broad, churns to fill your mouth as much as possible. Dry mouth feel, hops run the show but avoids herbaceousness per se, more raw grains, meadow scrub and tree bark with that same peppercorn and saltlick touch. Minor peach, red apple, pear fruit, the orange to lemon citrus drops back as well. In turn, maybe an uptick in florality. Cocoa and hard caramel candy helps to add diversity. Sheer density and forward momentum has it making a visceral impression but, flavor-wise, lacks nuance.

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Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a good amount of head and gives off an orange hop scent. Yes, a palate killer, it's somewhat astringent. IBU is there, like a 1.5X IPA with lots of orange citrus,some papaya and mango, marmelade, even some lime.The Epic series have been nice, but a bit overated in my narrow view of the world.

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Photo of oberon
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Epic beers from Zew Zealand have really hit home with me,Iam a hophead and their beer really seem to key in that old school left coast style,this beer was not quite as good as the others in my opinion.Poured into a imperial pint glass a clear lighter shade of amber with a very thin white head never really left.Aromas are the best trait of the beer,floral and resiny hops with a tinge of caramel.A bit sharp in the feel it takes away a little of the drinkability in my mind.Flavors are resiny and citric with a sweetish base.A pretty dood beer but not up to par with their other wares.

Go Blue!

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Epic Mayhem from Epic Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.