M.P.A - Renaissance Brewing

Not Rated.
M.P.AM.P.A

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

49 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 49
Hads: 80
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 7.31%
Wants: 3
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Renaissance Brewing visit their website
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ADZA on 12-09-2009

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 49 | Hads: 80
Photo of Chico1985
3.63/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

500ml DIPA from New Zealand that uses the obscure Rakau hop, "heaps of them" apparently. My first from this brewery, long overdue.

A - Pours a straight up red color with a bit of haze, nice color for sure but strange for an IPA. A thin off-white head retains as a slight cap.

S - Pine, grape leaves, lots of caramel and toffee, grapefruit, earthy honey bread.

T - More grapefruit with some pineapple, resiny piny hops, still big candy caramel and toffee malt with some toasted bread. Kind of a leafy tea-like presence.

M - Big malty feel with light but decent hop bitterness. Sweetness is kept in check. Carbonation a bit on the lower side, light alcohol warmth.

O - Definitely malt-forward but not in a bad way, lots of good caramel and breadiness with decent depth, pretty good hops too though they're buried. Reminds me of alot of DIPAs from 6 or 7 years ago (old bottle or intentional?) (895 characters)

Photo of schoolboy
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this ale come out 15 years ago I think it really would have been a renaissance. While it is very much in the vein of current trends, it has a slightly different slant than we usually see, and that makes it worthy of your consideration.

It looks like a normal big, slightly dirty DAIPA, with nice fine fizz and little lacing. The aroma is uniquely pungent. I can honestly say it is a first time whiff for me.

The taste is hoppy but not grassy, bitter, dark, boozy and there is a lot of malt there too (but no sweetness). It is a huge rich taste, with very little bite but loads of growl. The aftertaste lingers bitter and boozy.

This is a great big beer from the Southern Hemisphere that is worth trying. It travelled to Ohio in the USA extremely well. (758 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at Shelton Brothers The Festival 2014 held at Crafted in San Pedro, CA.

Pours a hazy dark honey orange with a foamy bone head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, and citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest and slight herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle. (641 characters)

Photo of Niceroad77
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Ok, where to begin? First, I noticed this has been put under American Double/Imperial IPA but apart from the Double, there is nothing american here. This is truly a "Double English" IPA.

A: Nice cloudy medium amber colour. Thick head showing good retention and lacing.

S: Don't expect smelling an American IPA, this is not one! Yes it has pine needles and citrus but there is something more medicinal to it. If you know what great English IPA's smell like, well you won't be disappointed here.

T: Same here. You know English IPA's? Well, enjoy this one!

M: Thin to medium body with good carbonation.

O: I think, as a Canadian living in the Northwest that English IPA's are a great change from the excellent brews we have here. This one being a double, everything is somewhat more upfront. If you are a hop head and can appreciate the good but somewhat different English IPA's, well this is another one for you. But expect to have to double the "ahhhs". (957 characters)

Photo of Hendry
3.79/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Looks like fresh pressed apple cider,half finger of khaki head,spotty lacing.

Aroma is malty and grassy,underwhelming.

Flavor starts out with a hefty English toffee blast followed by a moderate amount of balanced bitter dank hops. Alcohol well hidden for the abv.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, low level of carbonation.

I continue to question the freshness of New Zealand exports every time I pick one up, and can't help but feel this would have been much more vibrant had it been fresher. I feel like I get a better representation of New Zealand hops when they are brewed here in the States and offered fresh rather than ending up in a warehouse waiting to be shipped.Decent drinkability, but my sample was too malt forward for my taste. Stands to reason that since the California IPAs are typically 2-3 months old by the time they hit the shelves in Vermont, that this import is likely over 6 months old and not a good representation of what this ale once was. Moving forward,undated beer, especially imports, are better left on the shelf for the next guy and not for me. With so many choices offered that offer reliable bottle dating and freshness, this bottle has proven to be another waste of the $8 plunge. (1,218 characters)

Photo of LampertLand
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Renaissance Brewing 'M.P.A. Imp IPA' @ 8.5% , served from a 500 ml bottle purchased for $6.25

A-pour is murky gold from the bottle to glass with a smallish off white head leaving a streaky lace along the pint

S-rakua hops , more pine than citrus

T-big hop bomb tasting imp IPA

MF-WEIRD carbonation , full bodied

Ov-good big beer , decent enough imp IPA , especially if you like Rakua hops

prost LampertLand (412 characters)

Photo of BGDrock
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: vigorous carbonation requires careful pour and creates a big, bubbly, lasting head; murky brown, unfiltered, a little like real apple cider

Aroma: toffee, creme brulee, vanilla - it's coming off like dessert, lot's of rich malt

Taste & Mouthfeel: carbonation intense enough that it stings isn't helping, but could be worse; diverges significantly from the aroma with caramelized apple flavours briefly showing at the start, quickly giving way to fairly unique hop notes - pine, but light, with touches of fruit - want to say citrus, but feels more exotic; great length and finish; carbonation calms over time, not a hindrance; some bubblegum; midway through it's really becoming well balanced between the resin and caramelized apple/pear flavours

Overall: interesting stuff going on here, and different; they've done a good job of highlighting a rarely seen hop variety in North America; just a few kinks to be worked out, but definitely worth a try (964 characters)

Photo of canucklehead
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

NZ is exciting because of the promise of their hops which are unique in the beer world. This is very different DIPA because of the hops involved. There is a bit of aging going on due to travel but I still get a real sense of the way the hops are both citrus but also slightly like lemongrass. Big malt backbone makes things interesting but the star is the uniqueness of the NZ hops (381 characters)

Photo of FLima
3.69/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hazy dark amber color with a thick three finger head with long retention and leaving lots of laces.
Malty aroma with notes of caramel and a mild citrusy. I was expecting much more, though it is close to its best date.
Very condimented taste with notes of toasted and toffee malts, green grapes and pine. Hints of wood and tobacco. Quite dry and bitter aftertaste.
A malty DIPA that is a bit difficult to interpret, likely due to its uncommon Kiwi hop. Very assertive and hoppy with peppery notes. (496 characters)

Photo of hopsolutely
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

As I am responsible for letting this bottle age, am regretting not reviewing directly after Jeffo's summer tasting when the batch was fresher. It still pours a beautiful reddish amber, with an impressive head and good retention that leaves decent lacing. The malt-forward aroma is as I remember, although now there is a caramelized tone of slightly faded hops. The flavour is still impressive, with a decent malt base that has good hop highlights. A very nice finish that has citrus and nelson sauvignon elements that aren't found in many US DIPAS - and as this is a couple of months after release, that's even more impressive...

Very excited to be a supporter of this "upstart" kiwi brewery! (693 characters)

Photo of mick303
4.08/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL BB Nov. 30th. Poured into a tulip glass, gave a great soapy light orange head with really outstanding retention and curtains of lacing. Colour is a deep burnt orange brown, very hazy and opaque. Fairly dark and brown for the style. 4.25

S – the advertised NZ hops are in strong presence. Notes of green coffee bean, kiwi fruit, lime, tropical fruits, slightly antiseptic with the bracing hop intensity, it has a strong ‘green’ rawness to it. Very rich. 4.25

T – follows a similar pattern to the smell. Rick coating layers of tropical fruits and thick bitterness, has some more malt balance but a thick hoppy IPA. Some coffee bean comes again and earthy nuttiness, mango, pine resins, some crisp malt notes and a whack of strong herbal flavor, a lot of juicy and herbal flavor backed by a coating smooth bitterness. Finish is bitter but not super-slick and some malty aspects to it. As it warms it becomes more balanced and pleasurable, but the flavor and depth is pretty impressive. 4

M – big pronounced bitterness, moderate carbonation, some alcohol presence and heat to it. Definitely something to sip, and the hop burn is an invigorating kick, but there is enough malt to make it an intensely hopped but fairly balanced DIPA. Long lingering herbal bitter aftertaste. 4

What a roller-coaster! this is one for fans of hopped-up DIPAs and a good argument for the potential for NZ hops, they certainly make a winning tasty DIPA here! Really enjoyable, it can be a bit harshly bitter but the hop flavor is quite interesting, notable flavor of pine, ripe tropical fruits, maybe some pepper, its maybe a step back from the best but still a really enjoyable and tasty beer. 4 (1,691 characters)

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.61/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Could not find freshness info on this bottle.

A - Opaque dark amber colour with one finger of dirty white head.

S -Floral and tropical fruit aromas. Some mango, pineapple and a touch of pine with a fairly big caramel malt sweetness.

T - Moderate bitterness for the style with a big caramel malt backbone adding sweetness. Some pine, mango and tangerine notes. Very "balanced".

M - Medium body. Some stickiness. Light carbonation. (434 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottle: Poured a bright golden color ale with a large foamy head with OK retention and minimal lacing. Aroma consists of dry bitter hops with light floral notes with light sweet notes that are also perceptible. Taste is also dominated by dry and bitter hoppy notes with light sweet malt notes with very timid floral notes. Body is about average with good carbonation. Another Renaissance beer that fell a bit short in terms of hops punch. (438 characters)

Photo of ludachris
3.94/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

The very murky rusty orange body screams unfiltered, which means it's conserved every possible bit of hop goodness. A finger's worth of creamy paper white head floats on top, but not for long. This is one heavy looking DIPA!

The nose isn't as pungent as I had anticipated but it is still very intriguing. It's fresh and very floral. A hefty sticky sweet malt backbone is apparent. Biscuit, toffee, and rich bread all come to mind. This is however a DIPA and the hop character does well at asserting itself as such. The characteristic tropical notes of New Zealand hops come streaming through in the form of mango and papaya but it is ripe field strawberries that steal the show. The strawberry character is incredible and leaves me salivating.

The beginning is floral, grassy, and earthy. This hop character quickly spreads itself across the palate before reaching the height of its bitterness where mint leaves and pine assert themselves. The sweet and bready malt character stays at the back of the palate the whole time, letting the hops put on a show. The tropical fruity qualities of the papaya and strawberries hold strong on the middle of the tongue but almost get bulldozed by the bittering quality of the beer.

One of the first things that I noticed was how clean the feel of this 8.5% ABV DIPA was. It's almost exceptional in that regard. It still carries with it a soft creamy feel that's typical of the style.

Overall, a solid offering in the DIPA category coming out of New Zealand. I absolutely loved the nose; it was so inviting with the melange of ripe fruits. Unfortunately, in my opinion, the bittering hops used in this beer overtook a lot of the flavourful qualities of the aroma hops used. Perhaps that comes with the style of beer. If more focus was placed on the flavour of the hops rather than their bittering qualities, this would be an exceptional DIPA in my books. As is, it's still good and I'm glad I tried it! (1,945 characters)

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.81/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a turbid russet red with a patchy white head. Plenty of lace trails line the glass. Soft passionfruit and lemon aromas in the nose. Alcohol is also noticeable in the back. The taste is hoppy with a classic NZ tropical fruityness and some pine sap. A bready malt counter-balance keeps things in check. Booze creeps in the background and increases quickly with warmth, adding a spicy heat. The mouthfeel is lightly carbonated but rather full bodied. The finish is moderately bitter and fruity.

A very nice DIPA. The hop flavors could be more intense and centre-stage, especially with such delicious NZ hops, but this is still great stuff. Worth a try, if the price is a little steep. (688 characters)

Photo of thehyperduck
4.14/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before Nov 30 2013. I loved the Stonecutter scotch ale from these guys when I tried it a few years ago, but I hadn't seen anything else from this brewery on the shelves - until now, that is. As a hophead, I'd be remiss to skip this one, apparently brewed with a native Kiwi hop variety I know nothing about. Served slightly chilled, and poured into a tulip.

Pours a hazy amber-bronze colour, topped with one half-finger of dense, frothy off-white head that melts away within a minute or two. It leaves behind a thin, soapy collar and a few scant smears of lacing. The aroma is fruity and juicy, with lots of pink grapefruit and orange pulp, peaches, passionfruit and some earthy pine sap, with underlying caramel malt notes. There's something to please every hop fan in this bouquet.

Bready malts, toasted biscuits and a slight toffee/molasses sweetness start the flavour off, but these notes are soon swept into oblivion by the intense floral, fruity Rakau hop bill. Grapefruit, peaches and mandarin orange give way to vinous notes, juniper and earthy pine sap, the latter lingering into a long, bitter finish interrupted briefly by a flash of warmth from the ethanol. Bitter, resinous aftertaste, with a somewhat slick, oily mouthfeel. On the hefty side of medium-bodied, with moderate carbonation levels and a smooth feel on the palate.

Final Grade: 4.14, a respectable A-. Renaissance Brewing's Marlborough Pale Ale isn't the most drinkable DIPA I've ever had, but it's definitely one of the tastier ones. The alcohol becomes more prominent as this one warms, but it integrates nicely with the powerful, earthy bitterness of the Rakau hops - so I consider the added heat a feature, rather than something to find quarrel with. A solid brew any way you slice it - and given the difficulty of finding quality DIPAs in these parts, I'd definitely consider it worth another pick up in the future. Worth a try for sure, and I hope to try a few more of Renaissance's brews before the local stock runs out. (2,040 characters)

Photo of allergictomacros
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Huge creamy head over cloudy amber liquid.

S -Interesting aroma: a little bit of pine, a little bit of fruit, a little big of apple and a dusting of tobacco. Alcohol comes through as well.

T - Apple is evident. Some sharp piney hops and some orange. Leans towards the dry side for a DIPA. A little bit spicy maybe.

M - Smooth medium body. Again, seems a bit dry, which IMO, keeps the hops from reaching their full potential.

D - Fairly easy drinking for a DIPA. Big hopping is obvious, but lacks the balancing sweetness and the big resinous flavour I expect. (568 characters)

Photo of biegaman
3.89/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Renaissance Marlborough Pale Ale (M.P.A) looks like a slice of blood orange (and, coincidentally enough, tastes a bit like it too). Despite the vivid colour, however, it has a very misty complexion; only shadows are visible from the opposite side of this flaming beer. Head collapses but enough foam lasts so as to make mirages out of it, as if seeing shapes in the clouds.

M.P.A has a lot of pine needle and grapefruit zest, much of which is overlooked by the tremendous caramel and bread pudding notes of the malt. The sweeter, toffee-ish malts actually command, but meld well with the resinous and candied citrus flavours of the hops. It's an almost passive-aggressive aroma; bold yet reserved.

Like many DIPAs, this one drinks like a sweets shop crossed with a fruit stand. Maple and sticky toffee pudding flavours combine with grilled tropical fruits; pineapple, mango and papaya all taste slightly roasted, having maintained some juiciness but lost not much of their piercing acidity. Some sips can be like biting into an apricot pit: fleshy-sweet fruity, but nutty too.

M.P.A is an 'imperial' ale in weight (8.5% alcohol) as well as width; this is full-bodied to the point of being muscular. I bet it could bench-press more than I can. The brewery estimates this to have the equivalent of 120 hops per bottle - a fact as impressive as the math required to calculate it. Still, it has a maple sweetness that makes this approachable to most anyone.

Marlborough doesn't produce quite as good a DIPA as Southern California, but it's not far off. If I were a brewer in San Diego I'd be shaking in my sandals - sure, these guys are on the other side of the world but they've proven capable of making beer every bit as bright and hoppy (and they've got their own varieties to do it with). Another solid offering from Renaissance. (1,836 characters)

Photo of spinrsx
3.94/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $6.50

Appearance - Clear copper colour with a massive size fizzy/frothy beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for 5-6 minutes.

Smell - Hops, malts, caramel, apricot, pineapple

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel/toffee, and piney hops. There is also some apricot/pineapple fruity notes and a bit of a woodiness. It ends with a sweet mildly hoppy aftertaste.

Overall – A pretty good DIPA that I'm sure would be even better fresh. The booze is well hidden and it has a nice well rounded taste.. a little something for everyone. Kind of like an east meets west DIPA flavour wise. (753 characters)

Photo of jrenihan
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Beer is a somewhat murky dark caramel, with a very small beige head, despite a vigorous pour.

Nose contains tropical fruit and pine, particularly the latter. Resin and needles, with some mango.

Taste is a blend of hops and malt, but favouring the former. Like the nose, a strong pine flavour, accompanied by some tropical and citrus fruit notes. Mango, grapefruit. A full caramel malt base. Moderately bitter.

Full bodied, moderate to high carbonation. Quite oily. Booze is noticeable.

Overall, pretty good. (514 characters)

Photo of Sammy
3.89/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bang on DIPA. In your face hops, and these hops were citrus tangy, with some white wine character in the taste. Big foamy head. A bit boozy. Good drinkability on taste.LCBO treat.Worth seeking out for hop fans. Fuller mouthfeel, somewhat palate erasing/numbing. (261 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle, a cool new find at the local liquor monopoly chain. Can't really see how this entry is retired - it's been reviewed at least every few months for the past couple of years. Anyways, brewed (thoroughly, apparently) with the Rakau hop - that's a new one for me.

This beer pours a hazy, quite dark bronzed amber hue, with two fingers of dense, bubbly eggshell white head, which leaves a few instances of Denmark-esque peninsular lace around the glass as it slowly but surely fades away.

It smells of bittersweet tropical fruit - pineapple, mango, and papaya - cooked strawberry and nectarine, caramel/toffee malt, musty, earthy hops, and a touch of warming alcohol. Lots going on already, it would seem. The taste is more bitter, yet juicy grapefruit and pineapple, warmed peaches, mandarin orange, a somewhat laid-back caramel/toffee pudding malt, and a further leafy, piney hop assertiveness. The alcohol does well to keep a respectful distance.

The carbonation is fairly restrained, but still duly supportive, the body a sturdy medium-full weight, and generally smooth, but with the usual caveat when big-boy hops are given free reign. It finishes off-dry, the kind of doughy caramel malt holding fast against the still siege-happy hops.

A genuinely bitter and hoppy DIPA, the trick here being the complexity gleaned from a single hop varietal. Given the region, and even city of origin, I was expecting huge Sauvignon Blanc allusions, but other than the grapefruit, that wasn't the case. Robust and zesty fruit, subtle pine, and an agreeably dazed malt. What's not to like? (1,591 characters)

Photo of Brad007
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This should be un-retired as I was able to find a bottle locally.

Pours a cloudy amber with blonde highlights. Nice big head too. Looks a lot like hop juice to me.

Spicy with a touch of mango and pineapple in the nose. Creamy?

Assertive hop bite that's equal parts spicy and citrusy. Very mellow. Pineapple, mango and grapefruit.

There's just something different about this that I can't quite pinpoint. The mouthfeel is fairly mellow and finishes cleaner than I figured.

I have to agree with other reviews. This is more malt-forward than overly-hopped. (562 characters)

Photo of chanokokoro
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 500 ml (16.9 oz.) bottle into an unbranded short-stemmed tulip/snifter

Pours a very dark amber capped with a cream colored two finger head. Average retention, hints of wispy lacing. Pineapple, passionfruit, hints of spiciness, perhaps chive, cut grass, biscuity notes. Mixed tropical fruit notes, caramel maltiness midpalate, mint and fresh green tea. Finish with hints of chive, a hint of warming alchohol an light caramel. Big, full smooth body, moderate, gentle carbonation. The Rakau hops remind me of a cross between Summit and Simcoe. Spicy and assertive. Overall an enjoyable, malt forward IIPA/DIPA. (622 characters)

Photo of StJamesGate
3.79/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy oxblood, almost brown, with off white creamy head that fades fast and crusts.
Stewed peaches, caramel, candy apple, resin and strawberry - deep.
Toffee, peach cobbler and pomegranate then orange peel, passionfruit and pine sap hops.
Fresh apricot finish and long luscious bitter linger.
Medium, lots of cling, round.

Single hopped with Rakau.

Big, fruity, chewy, bitter IPA. Darker and maltier than maybe it needs to be - verging on being an Imperial amber or English barleywine more than a DIPA. It's a shame because the malts tip the balance so it's not the best example of how fruity NZ hops can be (like, say, Tuatara Double Trouble.) There's also a dank, earthy thing, like Simcoe, that I'm not sure belongs. Could learn from Cali on how to let the hop sing.

Needs a lighter (or more confident) hand. (817 characters)

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M.P.A from Renaissance Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 49 ratings.