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Swamp Ape IPA - Florida Beer Company

Not Rated.
Swamp Ape IPASwamp Ape IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

365 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 365
Reviews: 108
rAvg: 2.94
pDev: 27.89%
Wants: 6
Gots: 27 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Florida Beer Company visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: CampusCrew on 09-05-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 365 | Reviews: 108 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DrinkinBoy


2.28/5  rDev -22.4%

Swamp Ape IPA pours a golden orange. The head is extremely tiny small (not matter how hard you pour it or swirl it). The retention is also lacking.

Its smell is faint, however there are a handful of disguisable notes: malty (similar to malt liquor) and apricot.

The taste starts of somewhat tame with slightly sweet tones. After skipping over any type of middle body, the beer lives up to its name with a big Donkey Kong slam on the tongue. The fairly long finish is a mixture of bitterness and alcohol heat. There is little to no balance.

Its mouthfeel is on the heavier side of medium, with a small amount of carbonation (unusual feeling for the style).

Overall, the lack of quality with this beer was surprising. It is the first beer I have had from the Florida Beer Company, so I cannot judge the entire brewery by it. Also, the lack of carbonation (contributing to little head and unusual mouthfeel) may characterize a bad bottle. This beer would not be top on my suggestion list.

10-29-2011 04:20:00 | More by DrinkinBoy
Photo of GarrettMD

New York

2.33/5  rDev -20.7%

A - Pours a crystal clear light orange color with little to no head on a fairly aggressive pour. Tiny carbonation bubbles rising to the top and forming a white ring around the glass.

S - Booze and hops. Some slight citrus hops but for the most part very floral and earthy with a healthy background of caramel malts. Can definitely tell this is high ABV from the smell.

T - Not a typical taste for an IPA... Very sweet, even with the abundance of alcohol. Not too bitter at all. I definitely wouldn't classify this as a DIPA. There's not enough hops to even consider it a single IPA. Maybe a Double Pale Ale. While there are hops, they are secondary to the caramel malts. The hops are mostly citrus in the taste with some slight bittering hops.

M - Medium bodied, thick and sticky. Finish is sweet and sticky with the same caramel taste lingering.

O - Not what I was expecting from a DIPA. This could just be an old bottle, or poorly shipped since I am drinking this in NY and it's from FL. I'll attempt to get a bottle I know is fresh, but for now I have to review it as is.

10-17-2011 21:02:18 | More by GarrettMD
Photo of tchaos


2.08/5  rDev -29.3%

Grabbed a 4-pk one day at Total Wine by mistake -- thought I had grabbed a 4-pk from Swamp *Head* to send in a locals mix. Still sent off 1 or 2 of these as a gag.

A - deep honey colored, with bubbles...past experience makes me think it's possibly beer.

S - smells like hooch, as in, Turner and...

T - burnt-sugary failure, with a hint of "citrus" air freshener

M - Not entirely unpleasant, with mild carbonation

D - Slash the price, package it a loud-colored can, and re-brand it as _Extreme Ape Sweat_; sell by the palette to freshmen.

10-09-2011 21:19:15 | More by tchaos
Photo of mszuch


1.5/5  rDev -49%

Rec'd this for trade.
I always keep an open mind with new beers and regions.
Unfortunately, this one disappointed.
Smell was not recognizable, with taste being hot and full of sugar and alcohol.
Maybe 20 years ago, this would have been extreme, but now its disappointing.

Ended up pouring out 3/4 of the glass, since there is no way I can go on after first two tastes.

This beer should be labeled barleywine without the barley.

10-08-2011 00:34:52 | More by mszuch
Photo of JayS2629


2.93/5  rDev -0.3%

This poured a clear golden color with a great white head that stuck around and left nice lacing.

The aroma was a little hot with orange marmalade, grapefruit, apples and dark caramel with a touch of honey. Alcohol smell not well hidden.

The flavor is a little hot and clashes with a hop profile that is astringent and tangeled. Its a bad mix of citrus, pine, and medicinal flavors. Very band-aid like.

Mouthfeel is fine, crisp and medium bodied.

I wouldn't buy it again.

09-15-2011 03:00:25 | More by JayS2629
Photo of BigHop


4.72/5  rDev +60.5%

I pretty much drink only IPAs, mostly doubles. My two go-to brews are Dogfish Head 90 Minute and Stoudt's Double IPA. I also like HE'BREW Lenny's Bittersweet, which has some malt balance. All these beers are around the A range on beeradvocate.com.

I don't understand why Swamp Ape gets a C. It's a way groovy drink! Lotsa hops. Some malt, to give it that wonderful bittersweet feel. Maybe some BeerAdvocate people blame Florida for the current state of our nation. Or perhaps the IPA people just like pure hops, to burn their tongue. Whatever. In my opinion, Swamp Ape is a great brew!

BTW, this is my first review. I typically agree with the ratings, so I don't bother to add to them. But this one seems unfair. So it got me to play.

09-13-2011 23:00:32 | More by BigHop
Photo of mixcat


3.75/5  rDev +27.6%

This beer is more of an amber malty ale mixed with an IPA. Its sweet and not as bitter as it should be for an IPA.
Im also from Florida and enjoyed this beer but give it a B-
I reviewed this beer on Youtube under the user of Mixcatcom you can see the amber / gold color in HD.
I did enjoy it but it was not my favorite IPA.
All the best,

08-29-2011 01:37:44 | More by mixcat
Photo of doughanson78


2.88/5  rDev -2%

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter. Thanks to dimenhetfield for this one.

A: Nice copper color. Slight haze. One finger, slightly off white head, that is very creamy and has great retention. Very sticky lacing.

S: Apples. Maybe a light peach. Caramel, toffee and honey. Light vanilla. A lot of alcohol.

T: Alcohol dominates the flavor. Has a tad sweetness up front, more toffee and honey than caramel. A piney bitterness that is smashed out by alcohol. Light apples in the finish that comes together for a super fresh cut grass aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied. Medium carbonation. Very hot. A burning in the throat and stomach.

O: Not a great beer. If the alcohol was toned down a bit it has potential. The grassy aftertaste is good, but again, alcohol kills everything this beer could be.

08-05-2011 21:03:25 | More by doughanson78
Photo of fsvan


1.48/5  rDev -49.7%

Poured from a bottle into a New Belgium globe.

A- Dark, yet shining orange. Barely off white head, but not much.

S- Tons of hops. Very sweet. Some alcohol clearly present. The combination of these reminds me of over ripe oranges that have fallen off the tree and began to ferment. I'm from Florida, what can I say. The hops you'd expect are certainly present, just overpowered by the sweetness.

T- Holy shit. I've only known one person who has had this beer, and they told me it was a little sweet. It's a little sweet like Liberace was a little gay, or Sofia Vergara is a little hot. That's to say it's very, very sweet. This is a very hoppy beer, but the sugary sweetness pushes it all back.

M- On the heavy side of medium, but honestly, the sweetness makes it impossible to appreciate.

O- I hate to pile on with the bad reviews, but this beer is a wreck. I hate to drain pour beers, and probably won't the last half of this, but I am considering it.

07-27-2011 23:47:00 | More by fsvan
Photo of wallaceandvomit


3.43/5  rDev +16.7%

a- pours a somewhat dark caramel color with a little beige had that doesn't last long and fades to minimal lacing
s- sweet caramel malt with just a hint of alcohol and hoppy pine scent
t- exactly like the smell, this is basically a hoppier version of Earthquake high gravity.
m- like a slightly more astringent malt liquor.
this beer is definitely not worth ten dollars for a 4 pack even with the 10%abv. when i had this on tap before they released the beer i recall it being hoppier.

07-24-2011 04:04:52 | More by wallaceandvomit
Photo of kylehay2004


2.55/5  rDev -13.3%

A: Single finger foamy head. clear amber with golden hues.

S: Sweet, grapefruit, little hops.

T: Very malty and piney but where are the hops? The initial taste hits hard. Some what bitter with some citrus and caramel at the end that drops off rapidly. It almost finishes like a whiskey but not as tart.

M: Moderate carbonation. Medium to Full bodied.

Overall: I can get why so many posts gripe about this beer. Its unique but a poor representative of its genre.

07-22-2011 06:36:21 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of GHC


1.35/5  rDev -54.1%

A - Pours a murky orange, copper color with a white one finger head. (By far the best thing about this beer)

S - Vegetable aroma with a slight hint of caramel.

T - Very sweet for a DIPA. The best way to describe the taste is a combination of alcohol, carrots and vomit.

M - Mouthfeel has a certain creaminess. Sweetness is big and has a sticky feeling.

O - I am not a fan. I will not be asking my brother to send this from Florida again nor will I recommend anyone drink this. I ended up drain pouring the remaining 3/4 of the glass. What a disappointment for my first review.

07-16-2011 16:20:24 | More by GHC
Photo of Kinanik


3.75/5  rDev +27.6%

Total Wine & More had a vendor who was giving samples of this. I thought it was interesting and picked up a 4 pack of it.

According to the pamphlet they had at the table, the malt used in this beer is 2-row malt, Europ, and Cherry Wood Smoked Malt; the Hops are: Amarillo, Cascade, Centennial, Chinook, and Tettnang.

Apparently they brew this with Rock Sugar, so that the yeast "releases a bunch of esters." This seems like an odd tactic, but it makes for a unique beer.

The appearance is a deep gold/amber with a decent head. The smell is not too strong, but the bottle I have now is pretty cold, which may be suppressing it.

You can taste the esters, but I think it works pretty well. The sweetness is balanced out at the end by the characteristic Cascade grapefruit.

The mouthfeel is a bit thick for my taste. It IS an imperial IPA, and the mouthfeel is probably the only point where you can tell. The taste and mouthfeel don't mesh too well.

Overall, I'm glad I grabbed this beer. The sweet and bitter balance pretty well, but you expect a bit more bite from an imperial IPA with this thickness. If it had a bit less gravity, it would be a great mild-imperial IPA, like 90 Minute.

07-12-2011 00:18:14 | More by Kinanik
Photo of yeahnatenelson


2.65/5  rDev -9.9%

Appearance -- Pours a ruddy basketball orange with a finger of creamy parchment head. There's some lacing, but nothing outstanding.

Smell -- Lots of caramel malt and dried apricot, along with a modicum of pine resin and leafy vegetation.

Taste -- Again, quite malty. There's a honey and apricot flavor that is very singular. Hop bitterness is very mild, a sort of outdoorsy pine flavor and a touch of green bean. Finish is apricot and leafy vegetal bitterness.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-full in body with somewhat light carbonation. Feels slightly syrupy.

Overall -- Not a terrible beer, I guess, but really not much of a DIPA. Nothing terribly offensive, save for a little bit of green bean flavor, but really sub-par overall.

07-07-2011 00:37:37 | More by yeahnatenelson
Photo of sweatervest27


1.5/5  rDev -49%

Grabbed a 4 pack of this while in Tampa on a hot day full of packing a u haul. I needed a refreshing hit from an ipa and figured this was worth a try. I was wrong.

This poured like any other ipa, a dark gold with egg shell lacing and didn't smell too bad, just a little malty. All signs point toward at least an average experience but the taste was far less than acceptable. I imagined an actual swamp ape locked in a cage somewhere running on a treadmill and some dudes in lab coats siphoning off its sweat only to bottle and sell it to unsuspecting victims at the liquor store, me being one of them.

If you come across this run away like its the plague! It's nothing short of vile and disturbingly yucky. The taste is so bad I can't with good conscience rate this any higher than a 1 overall.

06-30-2011 20:48:41 | More by sweatervest27
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

2.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Poured on-tap and served in a pint glass, the beer is a bright, hazy orange-copper coloring with a steady flow of bubbles and a thick, light, frothy white head that settles quickly. The nose is super-citrus lemon/lime with overtones of dark, wet hops. Smells like an IPA mixed with Sprite. Syrupy malt backbone with lots of peppery-noted hops bouncing off. The aftertaste is spicy and slightly citus sweet again. Smooth finish, despite the heavy booze influence and flavors.

06-16-2011 01:47:32 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of wchesak

South Carolina

2.15/5  rDev -26.9%

Poured into a great divide yeti sniftrr glass

A - transparent copper color, small amount of white head that leaves some decent lacing, reminds me of a Brooklyn monster ale

S - smells a bit like it looks, a barleywine, booze, some vanilla, where are the hops, maybe catching some light earthy, grassy hops but the sweet caramel and alcohol are masking them

T - oh hey English barleywine, loads of malt that is pretty one dimensional, booze is riding high again, bitter and astringent aftertaste that has an element of hops to it

M - semi-thick, low carbonation

O - not an Imperial IPA, dont mind a boozy beer if there is flavor behind it like jw lees harvest, hops are lacking completely, had higher hopes but with so many other options in thus style I won't be buying this again

06-12-2011 00:36:43 | More by wchesak
Photo of BrewCrew2010


2.45/5  rDev -16.7%

A: Dark orange body with a thin, fast receding, white head.

S: An odd mix of earthy hops, vanilla, caramel malts, and booze. Smells like an American barleywine.

T: There is no way this is an DIPA, otherwise this is a hot mess. Definitely a malt bomb. Syrupy caramel sweetness along with notes of brown sugar. Not getting a lot of hops.

M: Thick and sticky texture; medium body; light carbonation.

O: If this was a different style, I probably would have given it a higher rating. Very sweet and very malty. Not a typical DIPA and I am very curious into the thought process of this one. I don't see myself getting this again.

06-10-2011 02:53:07 | More by BrewCrew2010
Photo of Avagadro

New Jersey

1.93/5  rDev -34.4%

A: Copper in color, with a frothy head, Swamp Ape shows no lacing, and has a touch of haze.

S: I was expecting a burst of hops from this brew, but received bubblegum, creamed corn, and malty cacophony.

T: What should be a dry onslaught of hops, Swamp Ape is a sticky mess of the aforementioned creamed corn and bubblegum.

M: Body is full, carbonation is low, and the finish is quite sticky.

O: Absolutely terrible... avoid.

06-05-2011 22:50:29 | More by Avagadro
Photo of AdamBear


2.55/5  rDev -13.3%

A-cloudy amber with a nice cream colored head. slow bubbles

S-strong scent of spicy hops with some grassiness. smells boozy with a hint of vanilla.

T-hits the tongue with a bitterness and oddly spiced hops. the taste is between skunky and buttery. the after-taste is bitter and reminds me of those multi grain wafers. there is a woodiness there as well. this is not a good balance of ingredients.

M-medium carbonation with a semi-dry finish

O-by far the strongest DIPA i've had that does not satisfy any hop cravings. its really not a terrible beer, but there is a complexity to it that isn't well balanced. i feel that the choice of hops was a bad one, either that or they added the hops not in a good way for IPAs. i think this beer has potential but has some major tweaking to be dealt with. i do wonder though how a beer like this has made itself as common as it is in this area. i can't imagine anyone enjoying this.

06-02-2011 06:23:45 | More by AdamBear
Photo of robbyc1


3.28/5  rDev +11.6%

Nice clear orange look, decent white head.

Whoa, over the top nose of alcohol and not much else, barlywineish, some hops but not enough.

The alcohol is not hidden here, it hits you in the head. But the flavor is well balanced, a bit of malt with whif of hops, not enough to hide the abv. It drinks pretty easy because it is dry, not sweet.

Overall not the best double IPA, short on hops, but well balanced and drinkable.

06-02-2011 00:21:20 | More by robbyc1
Photo of DUBinMIA


3.9/5  rDev +32.7%

medium gold brown color with decent head

smell was floral with hints of citrus and a light woody aroma

taste was good... i was expecting less malt but it was a welcomed surprise in a double IPA. Hops finish out with a crisp taste with some citrus flavor.

medium to light body, lighter as the beer warmed

overall a good IPA with 10% abv. might pick it up again but $10 for a four pack makes me reach for Dogfish Head 90 min and maybe not this... worth a try if you see it though

05-25-2011 03:14:37 | More by DUBinMIA
Photo of cbn


2.78/5  rDev -5.4%

Looks good, slightly hazy, sunset-amber body. Thin, pale head, constant stream of bubbles.

Sweet, wet, alcoholic, vegetal-floral aroma.

Tastes like fermented V-8 Juice, tomato and celery with some honey and molasses.

Slippery water with an alcoholc edge.

Swamp water.

05-20-2011 22:41:26 | More by cbn
Photo of nickfl


3.68/5  rDev +25.2%

A - The beer pours with one finger of dense, white foam on top of a clear, amber-brown body. The head has good staying power and it leaves moderate lace as it settles.

S - Sweet, caramel malt with some brown sugar and sweaty orange flavored hops.

T - Thick, dark caramel malt up front with notes of molasses and toffee. Some pine and grapefruit hops come out in the middle with more dark malt that brings up spicy, mustard like notes in the hop profile. Things finish up with more spicy hops and caramel malt.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a fairly sweet finish.

D - This is a pretty nice, if unremarkable, east coast IPA. The hop aroma is pretty well put together, and the malt more than keeps up with it. There is a lot of sugar character in the flavor profile with an intense caramel note. The finish has just enough bitterness to keep it balanced while the spicy hops match the toffee. I would like to see more hop character for a DIPA, but its pretty drinkable.

05-18-2011 06:10:04 | More by nickfl
Photo of babaracas


2.9/5  rDev -1.4%

Batch 00002, no idea what this means for freshness, but first sighting in this part of the state. Had heard this was good on-tap in it's home region. Pours a clear burnt orange, one finger of off-white creamy head, settles to a thin ring, coating the glass with lace for the first couple of inches. Smell: caramel, boozy, lightly toasted, herbal and lemony hopping. Taste: loads of caramel, booze soaked pineapple, candied citrus rind, leafy and herbal, grainy. A massive malt-bomb. Works as sort of a boring barleywine, but doesn't work as a DIPA. Some out-of-place soft apple/pear as it warms.

04-26-2011 23:41:29 | More by babaracas
Swamp Ape IPA from Florida Beer Company
69 out of 100 based on 365 ratings.