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Hardcore IPA - BrewDog

Not Rated.
Hardcore IPAHardcore IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

528 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 528
Hads: 1,404
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 14.47%
Wants: 35
Gots: 183 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
BrewDog visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-10-2008

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
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 528 | Hads: 1,404
Photo of sudsy2drunk
5/5  rDev +31.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

my buddy klye shared a four pack with me best night ever

A- puffy off tan heady with the darkest almost red look

S- hops hops and more hops

T- a strong kick in the face with a smooth malty after taste couldn't wait for my next sip

M- fantastic almost as over bearing as the taste

O- literally the best ipa ive had i really wish i could get more of it (358 characters)

Photo of oceanman907
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from the bottle.

This beer had me in a quandary. Very unique DIPA, in the sense that there is very little piney, bitter hoppiness in the forward palate. Instead it is replaced w ripe stone fruit and fresh baked biscuits. very malt heavy for the style, bordering on a strong hoppy red ale. Since the DIPA is really a distinctly american style, this beer feels like an english take on an american (and especially west coast) variety which is interesting, but I'd take my pliny, meltdown, and hop dog anyday over this beer. (547 characters)

Photo of snaotheus
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle poured into a chalice. Batch 053, best before 12-03-14.

Pours cloudy brownish-orange, medium head. Slightly carbonated. Smell is very similar to what I remember from Whoop Pass, but still don't know how to describe very well. Kind of a mushed up hops-and-vegetable-matter smell. Pulped grass and leaves, pine.

Taste is surprisingly soft in comparison with what seems like a somewhat harsh aroma. Grapefruit, lemon.

Mouthfeel is pleasant and velvety. Actually, very nice. Overall, this is a pretty good beer, but I'm not blown away. (548 characters)

Photo of Aaron_Ramson
4.17/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Chewy, oily, thick, resinous but not overly bitter, has an alcoholic burn ( 9.2 ABV!) that reminds you that you're drinking something heavy. An outstanding IPA that doesn't over do it with hop bitterness. It says that this beer is "retired" but we found it readily enough at a local beer and wine shop. A very exceptional imperial IPA, as good as Avery's Maharaja IIPA, with a better nose. Definitely something you want to try in your lifetime! (444 characters)

Photo of beergoot
3.91/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle info: Batch - 278, Best before date - 30-08-13

The beer poured out a deep copper-orange color and created a thin yet persistent head. Rich malt aroma; caramel; faint ripe apricot. Richly sweet malt taste with a great hop bitter component; nice integration with the ABV – noticeable yet let's the malt and hops do most of the talking. Medium bodied; somewhat syrupy; tingling on the tongue.

Massive yet approachable. Balanced and complex. Should be a hit with most hop-head IPA lovers. (495 characters)

Photo of TriggerFingers
4.24/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I have been wanting to try this one for a long time.

Had in DC out of the bottle. Bottle says: Batch #039, best before 22-02-14.

Nice color. Smells slightly citrusy and quite pleasant. Flavor is really unique--very malt forward with a slight tang. Bitterness is almost non-existent (or should I say lingering bitterness and astringency) which for an IPA is something to behold. In a way you can tell this isn't an American beer (rather it tastes like a foreign interpretation of an American beer). With that being said, this is super smooth! You can tell its higher alcohol, which comes off a little boozy because the bitterness doesn't quite keep up, but I think in a way it works. Its almost like a Scotch Ale brewed in an IPA style (if that makes any sense).

B+ for overall effort. Its different, and sometimes that is great! This beer delivers on the goods and from a fresh bottle its quite nice. Wish the nose were a little more pronounced and perhaps the hop flavor more developed. That being said, if you could try a single give it a try. From a tasting standpoint, I think it has a flavor and novelty that American IPA's simply don't have. If you are building a "custom 6'er" anywhere, put this one in there! (1,221 characters)

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.74/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz bottle served in a snifter.

L - clear deep amber color with a off-white head that thinned to a ring.

S - pine and tropical fruit aroma.

T - starts out with pine and some sweetness before a citrus rind bitterness takes over for the finish.

F - medium bodied it's smooth and somewhat warming.

O - not bad but there are lots of other beers in this style that I would take over this one. (395 characters)

Photo of dheacck11
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pour is a deep caramelly red/orange. finger of dense off white head, lingering.

Nose is big, sweet and sticky. Lots of pine, caramel, and a little hint of citrus. Perhaps just a hint of spice.

Taste is big and rich. Lots of thick, rich caramel and malt initially, with a little bit of citrus (mostly orange and tangerine) again. Follows by a solid piney, hoppy bitteriness. Little bit of scotch noted as well.

Mouth feel is rather thick and full, very sticky. Really nice.

This is a bit old, so not getting it at it's freshest is likely subdued the flavors some. Really has aged nicely though, to the point it almost tastes like a scotch ale at times. Would like to try again fresh to see if the hops are more prominent, but a really good brew anytime. Definitely an atypical DIPA for american standards. (809 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Batch 020. Best before 7/18/13.

Pours a murky dark orange-brown with a foamy orange-tan head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, toffee, and citrus zest. Taste is much the same with malty and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that has a great smell but it's a bit too alcohol forward in my opinion. (605 characters)

Photo of bmwats
4.01/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a footed tulip.

A: Dark amber hue. Pours about a 1 finger, foamy, tan-white head. Settles fairly slowly, leaving a thick foam ring around the rim of the glass. Hefty amounts of uneven lacing.

S: A little buttery sourdough bread, with some sublime pine, and a little honey and molasses. Nice overall floral aura.

T: Bready, and very piney, with just the slightest hints of sweetness.

M: Mouth-puckering acetone bitterness in the front-end, levels off to a light and subtle soft piney goodness. Thick and syrupy body with a dry finish.

D: Sip and enjoy. The bitterness character will dictate it.

Atmosphere is very good. Great body (which is nice...) including a nice head and some persistent lacing. Nose is very pronounced with a bready pine, balanced with some sweet and savory components. Flavor is doughy bread with pine, and some sweet balancing tones. Tastes like it smells. Heavy body. (929 characters)

Photo of mick303
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a distinctively reddish copper colour, with a nice white head, good lacing and retention.

S- an astringent pine and grapefruit hoppiness, tropical fruitiness, fresh almond nuttiness. Some caramel-like maltiness in the back. Lot of herbal character, somewhat antiseptic but quite interesting.

T- coating herbal bitterness, grapefruit/lemon citrus, pepper spiceiness, lot of dryness and herbal spiceiness on finish. Caramel toffee malt. A slight pineapple, and fruitiness, honey and hazelnut note, strong tart hop character wit ha slight underlying vanilla note.

M- big and slick, coating hoppy oiliness, herbal, moderate carbonation, big and pleasing. Dry and lingering finish. Really drinkable for a high strength IIPA.

A nice solid IIPA, good example. Bold and hop oily yet nicely sippeable, it is pleasing. Perhaps not as complex as the best examples but still a real treat on the UK scene. Well put together and a really quality beer. Big yet drinkable with a tasty complex profile. (997 characters)

Photo of ThePaleRider
3.59/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A - Very dark orange. Looks almost like a red ale. Nice two finger white head that leaves big chunks of lacing on the glass.

S - Very straight forward smell. Hop resin and very piney. The aroma isn't very complex but really foretells the flavor to come.

T - Hello bitter slap in the mouth! Wow, I've had this before, but this bad boy has some bite. Not a whole lot of citrus flavor. Plenty of pine and bitter taste. Love the bitter taste, but would like to have a little more citrus in the mix. Now that I'm done whining this beer is a monster. Bitter and strong. Should this be what a IIPA tastes like? Who knows, but cheers to Brewdog for not taking any prisoners.

M - Pretty smooth after taste with a light body for the flavor.

O - Love this beer, but not as good as I remember. The west coast floral style has grown on me over the overly bitter style. (860 characters)

Photo of Thehuntmaster
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle 9,2% Abv.
Served chilled in an oversized wine glass.
Batch: 317
Best Before: 09/10/2013

I was so shocked to see some bottles of this sitting on the shelf at my local bottle store. I never thought I would see the day that I could buy a decent beer locally!

Appearance: Hardcore IPA pours a beautiful amber-orange colour (crystal clear), with a rough pour generating a creamy off white head that lasts really well and leaves rings of lacing as it recedes. The 9,2% Abv is noticed as a swirl yields some light alcohol legs.

Smell: Hmmm, well the age of this bottle is certainly apparent (an IPA with a year shelf life! Really?), but it still smells pretty good. Sweet citrus notes (orange/tangerine), grape fruit pith, resin, orange blossom honey as well as caramel and toasted malt make up the bulk of the aroma. Warming yields some additional fruity notes (pineapple and peach) as well as a light floral character. Even at room temperature, there is no trace of the 9,2%.

Taste: Mmmm, this is still pretty tasty. Sweet caramel and orange blossom honey are noted at the front of the mouth, but are quickly overtaken by a massive wallop of bitterness and notes of grapefruit pith, pine resin, sweet citrus, touches of pineapple and peach and some dankness. Warming brings out a little more sweetness and a light toasted note. As with the nose, there is no trace of the Abv.

Mouthfeel: Wow, the mouthfeel on this bottle is far better than I remember - I am not sure I could ask for much more from a big IPA. Medium-full bodied, with a little stickiness and a medium level of ultra smooth carbonation.

Overall: This bottle was not as good as the three week old bottle I had in 2011, but it is still probably the best beer I can buy in the country! (1,768 characters)

Photo of TrappistJohnMD
3.67/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Amber color with lots of off-white head that lingers well in DFH IPA glass. Decent lacing.

Smell is pretty malty with lots of caramel and some hints of banana. Not as much hop character as I would have thought but there are notes of pine and grapefruit.

Taste is similar to smell. More caramel and malt than expected. Mild grapefruit and pine but doesn't linger very long. Moderate bitterness.

Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied. Average carbonation.

Overall this was worth a try but I won't seek out again unless on tap. (523 characters)

Photo of endovelico
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pristine amber brew with white frothy head that holds well with good lacing.

Aroma: Complex and intense. Spearmint at the front and honey and flowers on the back. It feels a bit rough around the edges but it's notwithstanding very pleasant and powerful.

Taste: Medium high in intensity. Taste is earthy, citrusy (grapefruit comes to mind), spearmint, caramel and toffee. So elegant and balanced.

Palate: Medium full bodied. Medium low carbonation. Medium high bitterness.

Overall: When it's good, it's good. They're not reinventing the wheel here sure, but they hit nearly every mark with stupendous craftsmanship. (630 characters)

Photo of StaveHooks
3.81/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle served in a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Best before: 20-8-13

A - Pours a dark hazy copper with a frothy tan head. Nice retention and lacing.

S - Citrus, grapefruit, lemon, baked bread, caramel, toffee.

T - Bittersweet grapefruit, sweet toffee and toasted caramel malts, herbal, pine, and peppery hops. There's a tangy earthy quality that rides along the moderate bitterness. The sweet caramel malt push back against the onslaught of hops to provide pretty good balance.

M - Full bodied, light to medium carbonation, sticky.

A nice example of the style. Not as bitter as I thought i would be but very full flavored and surprisingly balanced. (663 characters)

Photo of thierrynantes
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33 cl.) purchased from Super Market, and tasted in 2013.

Appearance : amber color, with white foamy head.
Smell : malty and hoppy aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : hops, alcohol, and caramel flavors, leading to a very bitter finish.
Drinkability : a good beer in the American Style Imperal IPA. (302 characters)

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

BrewDog Hardcore IPA has a thick, soapy, cream-colored head, a dark brown (or under light, orange-golden), very hazy appearance, with streaming tiny bubbles and a bit of lacing left on the glass. The aroma is bold and strong- fruit, fresh-cut flowers (odd, considering this bottle is two years old), malt, and hop oil. Taste is of brown bread crust, hop oil, caramel, bitterness, toffee, light brown sugar, and apple peelings. Mouthfeel is medium and slick, and BrewDog Hardcore IPA (2nd Edition) finishes semi-dry, bitter, and not undrinkable. Overall, it's very nice, yet, not exceptional. Still, I'd recommend trying it.

RJT (628 characters)

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a mostly clear, copper hue. Head is a babe. Big and fluffy. The head sits proudly and is very reluctant to die away. The head leaves walls of lacing. Looks excellent.

S-Whoa! Dank, catty, oniony and resinous. I respect its power. Just bloated with Simcoe; I am actually surprised to see no Summit hops have been used (because boy is there a bunch of green onion in here). I would love to know which of these hops are giving me this aroma. A fistful of crushed pine needles. Its hard to pull away much behind the all-out hop blitzkrieg.

T-The flavor just pummels the palate with all of the aroma's elements. Wet cannabis, chopped green onion, grapefruit bitters and pine oil. It really cold-cocks you at first but then it seems to warm up to you and give you a break. The flavors become less overwhelming and more pleasurable. Yeah, there is some maltiness crawling around but this beer is all about the muscle of the holy lupulin.

M-Full. Bitter. Dry. Coercive. Nearly lovely. Like rough sex. Tight bubbles and a resinous finish.

O/D-Far exceeded my expectations. My favorite DIPAs are not cut from this mold but this one is just too ballsy to not enjoy. After a few sips, you begin to adjust to its muscle. Its a great brew. I won't be surprised if tomorrow I wake up and my breath still wreaks of Hardcore's hops. (1,327 characters)

Photo of --Dom--
4.69/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter. Pours a just slightly hazy deep orange, almost a red. Decent 2 finger or so head with decent retention and lacing. Smells of pine and citrus as to be expected.

Wow this beer has great flavor and boldness. Big hop flavors up front, solid malt backbone. Great balance overall. I'm not sure if I believe it's 150 IBU's, at least not with the great balance I'm tasting here. You know the deal, it's big, it's hoppy, it's got a good malt profile as well. It is in my opinion a world class DIPA. It is what you'd expect it to be and then some. I could go on and on about the subtleties but I wont. Just try it. You won't be disappointed.

Mouthfeel is heavy, slightly sticky. Good carbonation. Overall just a great beer. A little high for the pricepoint so probably not something I'd pick up very often, but purely for cost reasons. I'd session this if it was cheaper. (906 characters)

Photo of atr2605
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours a deep amber with an off white head with excellent retention that leaves some lacing
S-pine,sweet malt, honey, bit of citrus
T-lots of sweet malt, honey and pine, with some raisin flavors in the finish
M-medium-full bodied
O-Hop forward double ipa with a bit malt background and actually has some fruit flavor in it. Very interesting version of the style, wouldn't mind having again (390 characters)

Photo of facundoCNB
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

a nice clean amber pour, lots of visible carbonation bubbles rising down the middle, 2 fingers of foamy off-white head which left behind lots of lacing. smells of pine, grapefruit, sweet caramel malt. pretty hoppy scents.
the taste is hop forward initially, cascade?, then moves on immediately to a sweet malty backbone which gives off a bit of heat (you can definitely feel the abv on this one). malt heavy, as expected from a beer that ships internationally like this, however there is a good amount of hop bitterness and citrus flavors of grapefruit to even it all out.
medium body with moderate carbonation, a bit creamy. (625 characters)

Photo of Wadian
4.3/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle from Beers of the World in the Zurich Hauptbahnhof in Zurich, Switzerland

Appearance: amber, clear. Solid head left lacing down the glass.

Smell: Vanilla toffee malt predominates with a fruity hop tang finish

Taste & mouthfeel: flavor is deep, toffee caramel malt. I'm not sure I really understood the depth of caramelized, biscuit allure offered by Maris Otter before I had this beer. Full, round mouthfeel. Hint of roast. Delicious.

Overall: i've had a number of beers from Brew Dog that I've liked, especially in the UK. But it's sometimes hard to find fresh versions in Switzerland. This beer may have aged a bit as the Maris Otter was really showing off. Still, a nice bitterness remained. This is one of the best beers I've had this year, and I've had some good ones. Really good. (803 characters)

Photo of BeerNFoodDood
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer poured from bottle into a bubbled English pint lass.

Hardcore pours with nice head, around 2 full finger of creamy white head. Beer has a nice amber/ red color.

Nice malt profile on the nose accompanied by citrus hop aroma. Aroma of hops recedes over time in lass but malt profile is full of caramel.

Nice bitter hop character upfront with a slight citrus tang on the end. The malt and hops are well balanced with the malt winning the flavor war slightly. The alcohol is well hidden by malt, but you can sense its character.

Good IPA, would have again.

Cheers (569 characters)

Photo of spinrsx
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bottle from the Potsdam NY IGA for 8$

Appearance - Slightly hazy copper colour with an above average size fizzy off-white coloured head. There is a fair amount of carbonation showing and there is some decent lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops, grapefruit, oranges

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel and malts mixed with hops. There is also some grapefruit/oranges mixed with some apricot/guava notes. It ends with a sweet fruity and hoppy aftertaste.

Overall – I've only had a few beers from this brewer, but they have all been solid. I really enjoyed this one and I'd drink it again anytime. If I had to adjust anything, I dial down the sweetness a bit. (751 characters)

Hardcore IPA from BrewDog
86 out of 100 based on 528 ratings.