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Hardcore IPA | BrewDog

very good
543 Reviews
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Hardcore IPAHardcore IPA

Brewed by:
United Kingdom (Scotland) | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Imperial India Pale Ale rocks…hardcore! But don’t take our word for it...this little bottle has a grandiloquent story to tell.

2,204 malted Maris Otter grains gave all they had to offer the world to provide the robustly delicate toffee malt canvas for the ensuing epic. 4 Hop Cones willingly sacrificed themselves to ensure your mouth feels punished and puckering for more. 9,900,000,000 yeast cells frantically fermented their little hearts out as the sugars became alcohol in the depths of our fermentation tanks.

2 humans and 1 canine companion were relatively happy with the results.

150 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-10-2008

User Reviews
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Reviews: 543 | Ratings: 1,480
Photo of Homers_Beer_Odyssey
4.43/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

APPEARANCE - Dark, opaque, lacing, red, 1FH.

AROMA/SCENT - Hops, sweet.

TASTE - Hops, bitter, pine.

MOUTHFEEL/PALATE/TEXTURE - Dry, smooth, clean, light.

VALUE - $8 for 12-oz bottle. Average.

OVERALL/DRINKABILITY - ABV well-hidden. Easy drinkin'.

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Photo of scotorum
4.11/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 11.2 oz. bottle into a Victory Donnybrook Stout nonick

a: Clear copper with an inch and a half thick offwhite head which receded to rocky surface foam and dense patterned lacing.

s: Moderate pine resin

t: Caramel malt under pine with moderate strength. Bitterness and some malt sweetness linger in the finish. High ABV is quite well covered.

m; Moderate to full, nice body, quite oily, considerabel carbonation tingle.

o: Pretty much as anticipated, a malty, heavily-hopped DIPA, English bitter taken to new heights of bitter. Rather similar to US DIPAs in the malty vein such as Green Flash Palate Wrecker, and at a similar pricepoint.

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Photo of Dentist666
4.6/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into english pint.
Pours copper-orange hazy beer with 1-finger off-white head, mediocre retention. Sticky aroma, malts and tons of floral hops. Massive body, noble bouquet of hops, masculine embodiment for gentry and blessed.

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Photo of metter98
3.89/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is clear dark amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of toasted and toffee malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste follows the smell, but also has strong flavors of pine resin hops that persist through the finish and contribute a moderate to strong amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and somewhat crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The hops in this beer are very assertive and make your mouth pucker, but there is just enough of a heavy dose of underlying malts to prevent this from being a complete hop bomb.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of dmgeng
4.46/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoy watching BrewDogs and I figured that this beer would show me their prowess.

A - Deep orange color. Hazy from the dry hops with a bountiful white head and light lacing.

S - Pungent and strong hop fragrance with lots of citrus fruit, pine, and dank hops. Could smell it before I picked it up. Almost perfume like from the magnitude of aromatics. Some slight alcohol presence while at 45 degrees.

T - Awesome flavor with the strong citrus hop character. The alcohol and strong hop bitterness are also present but not in contention with the NW hops. I think there is a ton of hops in order to keep this hight ABV beer as delicious and hop forwards as some 6% ABV IPAs. There are also light malt and caramel character in the middle but is in no way balanced.

M - Moderate mouth-feel with moderate carbonation.

Overall, a very good DIPA. Very similar to many other big DIPAs but it is still really delicious and worth a try. Not all the way at the top but I really enjoy the hop explosion that is present in this bitter and alcoholic brew. This beer is great if you like Imperial IPAs.

Glass- Tulip

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Photo of mr-jj
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%

Poured into a hotel tumbler. Purchased from Don Quixote in Kawasaki, Japan.

Couldn't assess color in the tumbler. Head is nice and thick. Aroma is piney, citric hops and booze. Flavor is similar - strong hop and alcohol presence with just a bit of malt. Finish is lingering and bitter. Body is medium/full.

Overall, a good beer, but not as well balanced as its little brother.

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Photo of The_Mad_Capper
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

The aroma includes bread, a touch of pine, and a good citrusy accent akin to grapefruit and orange rind. The body is dark amber with an off-white head. The flavor is dominated by bitter pine needles and soap, a little orange rind, and some sweetness and a little bready flavor from the malt. It's smooth and on the light side of medium-bodied with a good bite.

Quite intense with bitter soapiness dominating in the flavor with just a little sweetening from the malt. Could be better balanced and better tasting. Kudos to them for making the 9.2% ABV virtually imperceptible though.

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Photo of hopley
4/5  rDev +4.7%

• Nice pour with 1.5 inches of initial head that fades to a thinner carpet that remains the whole time, clear orange color, minimal lacing
• Can’t get much smell other than strength
• Medium mouthfeel – slightly sticky but not chewy and definitely not thin – whatever the hell that means!
• Kind of a sweet earthy slightly tangy taste with lasting bitterness – a malt forward IPA
• 4.0 rating - overall a pretty decent imperial IPA

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Photo of Omnium
3.69/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Out of a bomber into a bow-tie pint

A - muddied orange with a big two finger off white foamy head, thick lacing.
S - Lots of citrus and orange, some hidden melon and grape notes, tangerine, alcohol, hop resin, grass and pine, caramel malts, toffee.
T - Lots of massive bitterness, sweet caramel and biscuity malt base, lots of agressive hop spice and citrus bite.
M - Thick, massively thick, alcohol burn, chewy.
O - I think this will be the last time I taste anything from BrewDog in a while.

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Photo of JamesMN
3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clearly printed best before date of 1/31/15.

Appearance: Awfully opaque and the color of caramel. Stiff off-white, almost tan, head.

Aroma: Quite a malt bomb of caramel, sugar cane, and astringent orange. Almost in barleywine territory.

Taste: As hinted at in the aroma, this is a monster of an IPA that drinks much more like a barleywine. This is due to a couple factors, the first being the huge depth of malt flavor. I've become so used to west coast DIPAs that I forgot other styles let the malt bill shine. The other factor that I contribute to a more barleywine-esque experience is the sort of wonderful finish that combines the huge malt sweetness with a bitter orange pulp hop attack and results in a highpoint of both flavor and balance. But that's just my two cents on style guidelines. The malty flavor of caramel/nutty Marris Otter that dominate the initial flavor ride out the aftertaste accompanied by moderate citrusy hop bitterness. At 9.2% ABV Hardcore IPA drinks like an even larger beer.

Mouthfeel: Full in body with the right amount of smooth carbonation to suit a beer this size. Decent drinkability for how thick it is.

Final Thoughts: Wow, this one really took me by surprise. After the aroma I went in with low expectations and Hardcore IPA came back with big flavor. At the end of the day the line between double IPA and barleywine can be a little hazy... especially after drinking one. However, this beer definitely has its merits and deserves whatever glass its poured into. Would I drink it again? Sure, on-tap in Scotland.

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Photo of drpimento
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%

Pourd at a perfect temperature with a thick cream colored long-lasting head lots of Lace and a clear honey amber color. Aroma is malt Caramel, little more resin then grapefruit and a bit of weed. Flavor is extremely bittersweet with enough carbonic tang to balance. Great body. Boozy in the finish. Killer sipping beer

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Photo of James-A-Goddard
4.75/5  rDev +24.3%

Just like the Scottish - fucking hardcore!

This is one of my regular purchases at my local shop. It delivers boldly on flavours, with a sharp bitter note at the end.

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Photo of ExtraStout
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Bought a 4-Pack of bottles for $14.99.

A: Glowing amber poured with almost no head. Lacing not as heavy as expected.
A little bit of a letdown with the appearance.

S: What a unique nose for a DIPA. Quite floral and fruity with the alcohol apparent as well.
A little bit of tropical notes apparent as well.

T & M: Wow, what a hop bomb! Balance is not on top of this brews qualities.
I am a hop fan and this one delivers.

D: Drinkability not a strong trait of this brew. An interesting take but for the money
I don't think I'll be having this beer again.

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Photo of SStein
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%

Golden Orange on color with full lacing across the top. Strong citrus in the nose, with a touch of toffee on the back end. Tastes like it smells. Very smooth carbonation as you drink. Overall a great IPA with little hype, which means I won't have to fight for it at the stores.

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Photo of badmotorgrunge
5/5  rDev +30.9%

A: Bright orange, little haze
S: Amazing! One of the best smelling ipa's I ever had!
T:Follows smell perfectly. Well blended, citrus, toffee, just a treat.
M: Ahhhh! thick rich, perfect
O: I cannot understand why this doesn't get more love. Can't think of anything I don't love about this brew! Its just incredibly crafted. Cheers Brew Dogs!

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Photo of Retroman40
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Paired this with Chipotle Chicken and grilled vegetables and it was quite nice. Poured out a somewhat hazy amber color with a hint of orange. The intense citrus and pine aroma were a clear indication that this one could stand up to spicy food. The initial flavor was citrus hops that gave way to toffee like malt sweetness on the back of my tongue. Carbonation was just right. There is absolutely no "hotness" from the 9.2% ABV even as the beer warms. Warning - this one could sneak up on you!

I like the show "Brew Dogs" and when I spotted this at my Liquor Barn I had to try it. While I think there are better DIPA's available to me (Dogfish Head 90 minute comes to mind), I am glad I gave this one a try.

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Photo of HipCzech
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Serving: 355 mL bottle poured into an IPA glass (batch 081, best before 25/03/15)

Appearance: Bright, slightly hazy orange copper. Frothy, lasting head with moderate lacing.

Smell: Pine needles and candied orange. Clean and welcoming.

Taste: Pine and citrus rind against toffee sweetness. Evenly bitter throughout, but not overly so. Only hints of its 9.2%.

Moutfeel: Smooth, almost oily; medium body with low carbonation.

Overall: Full in aroma and taste, while still nicely balanced and restrained.

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Photo of phynes1
3.42/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Galway, Ireland, 33cl bottle.

A: Dark amber or copper. Poured medium head, small bubble / cell size, some lacing, lingers. Lovely appearance. Fresh look.

S: Twang of a single IPA. Thick toffee orange. Not much dankness, which is disappointing for a IIIPA.

T: Bitterness and concentrated toffee orange (oily). Not much else coming through for me.

M: Medium body, I like this in some beers, but a IIIPA? Probably not.

O: Nice beer. A IIIPA’s spirit fighting to get out of a dark ales body.

Too much caramel flavours for style. For me, >IPAs should have minimal caramel flavours to allow the hop character come through; hasn’t happened for me here. Lovely beer to try. I’m a big Brewdog fan, but won’t go out of my way to purchase this again. I wouldn’t like to try this beer in the US, or in Europe, I don’t think it would travel well.

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Photo of Purp1eOne
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This a very well balanced IPA that goes down very easy.

Poured a dark amber orange with a small head and some lacing. The beer was not too bitter and the malt helped smooth it out to make it a very drinkable IPA. Mouth feel was smooth with hints of citrus and pine.

Will definitely buy this again.

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Photo of delta490
3.94/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy orangery-amber with a short-lived white head. There is an slight amount of lacing. The aroma is mild and malty, with light hints of pine. The flavor is also pretty malty, but there is a nice blast of hops bitterness. There wasn't any one flavor or flavors I could put my finger on but it still tastes good all the same. There is a pleasant thickness to the body. It's not a huge American-style IPA, but for England, this is big bold flavorful version. It's all about perspective, I suppose.

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Photo of RickS95
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Kind of a thick pour. A cross between brown and orange in color...very dark for an IPA, probably the darkest I've seen. The head is only there momentarily in the beginning and then again whenever you swirl the snifter, it offers little retention. Very opaque.

A nice hint of caramel before the citrus and pine hits you. Mostly orange rind and pineapple with the pine playing nicely in the background. Wafts of alcohol occasionally are released.

There's a little bit of the citrus in the taste before the caramel malt and alcohol take over. Normally it's the other way around, but I swear the malts hit you after the hops. The alcohol is somewhat omnipresent.

It's pretty tame for 150 IBUs. I guess with that much malt the bitterness is somewhat tempered. It provides a nice balance for such a strong beer. Faint heat in the finish with a lingering citrus rind bitterness lasting well into the swallow.

Overall this beer surprised me by being very drinkable. I expected my tongue to need traction after finishing a bomber, but it's fairly easy to drink thanks to the balance provided by all the malt. A good beer, not just some gimick.

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Photo of pkalix
4.34/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

ultra-sweet dark golden color with some off white head on top. toffee and malty sweetness on the nose and on the palate, with a tangy floral bite and bitterness afterward. the pine kind of clings to the top of the back of the throat. somebody else hit it right on the head - oranges with a sprinkle of white pepper.... definitely! pine-y, pepper-y, zesty, citrus zest. bitter. very bitter. smooth, but bitter.
overall, a very decent brew. a little more bitter than I prefer but I know people who would love this....

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Photo of yuenglingfan101
4.89/5  rDev +28%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A great beer. Poured into a pint glass. Had a copperish hue and was expected a golden hue instead. But it was a good smell good taste and over all mouth feeling was quit o refreshing not an overall bad beer. Love the taste of the Maris Otter Hops in the beer. Kudos

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Photo of chogm54
4.29/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Ive been getting stuck into a few Brewdog beers lately (5am Saint, Punk IPA, dead pony club) and have found them to be a bit of a mixed bag. Having heard this beer's reputation, I left it to last. The bottle best before date is August 2014.

A - brown/ruby red, pours a minimal head that lingers as a frothy lacing. Looks inviting.

S - Floral odours, with a faint basil and citrus (orange) smell. Actually smells pretty nice, like an air freshener.

T - Hoppy bitterness at the start, with the malt kicking in pretty quick. The malt flavours combine with slightly alcoholic taste that lingers for a looong time. The alcohol tinge is fairly mild considering the ABV, and rather warming.

M - Slight carbonation, medium body, slightly dry.

O - Great IPA, it has shown me that good IPAs can be made outside of the new world. The alcohol taste, while mild relative to the ABV, would prevent me from drinking this on a regular basis however. Certainly worth a go.

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Photo of jmbranum
4.75/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I found this treasure in the $1 bargain bin at one of our local liquor stores!

It says it is "best before 01-02-14" but in April 2014, it is still outstanding.

Rich alcoholic hop-laden aroma.

Pours a bright hazy orange with a lingering light tan head.

Flavor is rich and balanced. Layers and layers of hops (almost oily with them) and malt. Some coppery notes (which I adore), some chewy wheat bread. A little bit of spices. The aftertaste starts sweet but then ends on a hoppy bitter note. Absolutely beautiful. Sunset in a glass.

Nice full thick mouthfeel. Very full with some almost oily elements (I mean this in a good way) but with a little bit of faint carbonation prickle. Almost like velvet.

An extremely good beer. The best I've had in awhile. Worth buying even if it isn't in the bargain bin. I almost wonder if the cheesy "HARDCORE" name and label design scares people off. This is a very tasty, thoughtful brew.

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Hardcore IPA from BrewDog
86 out of 100 based on 543 ratings.