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500 BC Double IPA - Humboldt Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
500 BC Double IPA500 BC Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

53 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 53
Hads: 308
Avg: 3.88
pDev: 25.77%
Wants: 9
Gots: 52 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Humboldt Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BigJYoungblood on 11-18-2013

Here’s a new brew coming from Humboldt Brewing Company. This beer is called 500 BC Double IPA and it celebrates the California Coastal Redwood--the oldest living species in North America. This beer will be packaged in 22oz bottles by Firestone Walker and it will come in at 8.3% ABV.
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Reviews: 53 | Hads: 308
Photo of mr-jj
2.77/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Poured into a snifter from a bomber. No date that I could find.

Color is deep amber with a one finger off-white head that faded quickly. Not much lacing. Aroma is caramel, booze and iced tea. Smells more like an amber than an IPA. As it warms, the malt is even more dominant. Flavor is less sweet than the nose, but still dominated by the caramel. Finish has some bitterness mixed with the malt. Body is pretty heavy with minimal carbonation.

Overall, this is more reminiscent of an amber with some mild bitterness than a DIPA. I hope this was old, as it was not a good example of this style.

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Photo of corby112
2.83/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Pours a slightly hazy, dark golden amber color with apricot edges and a frothy, two finger white had that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Very good retention with sporadic streaks of soapy lacing left behind. A little darker than expected but otherwise looks pretty good.

Earthy, floral hop aroma with grassy pine and oily resins countered by a sweet caramel malt backbone. The hop profile is lacking in balance and could use a touch of sweetness to counter the earthier, piney notes. Strong caramel malt presence with hints of toast, toffee, roasted nut and subtle dark fruit character.

On the lighter end of medium body with some dry, earthy bitterness that lingers over the prominent malt backbone into a bone dry finish. Sticky and resinous with some straw and soil-y grass flavor along with some pine needle and spruce tip but overall, the hop presence is one dimensional and pretty weak. The malt presence is much stronger than expected/preferred making this beer taste more like a tame American barleywine. Slightly toasted with some leathery malt, caramel sweetness, toffee and toasted bread. Subtle alcohol and dark fruit sweetness in the finish. The high ABV is decently masked but the lack of balance and strong malt flavors hurt the drinkability of this beer. Not bad but disappointing for the style.

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Photo of snaotheus
2.89/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle poured into a large mug. D47 D-1 1D1B appears to be the code. Haven't a clue what it means.

Pours pretty darn hazy with a medium sized white head, fades moderately quickly (at least halfway) and seems to be leaving thick, porous sheets of lacing along the side of my mug. Smell is very characteristic of what I'm starting to describe as "old hops". I can't really smell much else.

Taste is strong on lemon, more old hops in the flavor, straw/hay.

Mouthfeel is thick and heavy. Overall...not a great introduction to a brewery I hadn't heard of before.

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Photo of Lawl3ss
3.28/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Chilled 22 oz. bottle into 33 cl tulips.

Look- Nice pour, capped with three fingers of frothy off-white head that falls slowly. Deep amber body, crystal clear.

Smell- Apricot, spruce, wintergreen, bubblegum, honey, bing cherry. A little toasted character- overall pretty nice, a little on the sweet side.

Taste- A little plain after the aroma, vaguely reminiscent of a toned-down Nugget Nectar or maybe Pizza Port's Mongo. Lemon-lime, moderate sage-pine bittering, a little honeylike sweetness. Herbal finish, lingering mint and lemon rind.

Mouthfeel- Medium body, crisp carbonation. Pretty clean, a touch of astringent booziness. Somewhere in the nowhereland between watery and substantial, leaning towards watery. Carbonation is prickly and not really fitting. Not bad, but I wouldn't want more than 12 oz. or so.

Overall- Decent. Nothing stands out in particular in the flavor or aroma department, but it is pretty. I wouldn't really recommend it.

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Photo of KFBR392
3.33/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Dark orange color. Pretty transparent with a half of finger of head on the pour. Active carbonation is low for the style. Sticky lacing left behind at each level.

Smell: Caramel and molasses on the front. Malt sweetness is pronounced and very potent. Hops are barely noticeable, smells like an imperial pale ale.

Taste: Bright, sharp malt sweetness right away. Accents of caramel, sugar, orange rinds, and molasses. The body continues to open up with tones of malt sweetness. Hop profile is again lacking.

Mouthfeel: Sweet smooth malt runs throughout. Carbonation is light which aids to the syrupy texture.

Overall: Man this was a malt bomb. Almost no hop profile. This bottle may have been a little old but with no bottle dates there is no way of knowing. Oh well nice to try something different.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.33/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

I'm going to guess this was an older bottle, but not sure. Thought about not reviewing it, but shipping, handling and storage go into beer quality, so we'll go with it.

Pours a light hazelnut, with nice rich white head. Not too shabby

Faded caramel and pine in the nose. Sweet biscuit underneath that. Hints of citrus and booze. Smells more like an APA, not an IPA, and definitely not an IIPA

Yeah, flavor follows. This is a light, very light, IIPA. While I like that it does not overpower with booze and resin, it lacks body and hops. The caramel is nice, but muffled by something. Light citrus and pine that probably blended well earlier.
Feels light, not much bite or dryness. It's not a bad beer by any means. Doesn't fit the style other than abv level.

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Photo of allengarvin
3.39/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

500 BC, a beer named for, like, when there were dinosaurs or something, I assume.

A: 3.75 - Copper colored beer with a small but lasting head.
S: 3.5 - Somewhat disappointing--faint citrusy, piny scent, with a little malt sweetness.
T: 3.25 - Only moderately bitter, with sweet malt coming through clearly. Likewise, hop flavor is not all that much, just adding some floral, citrusiness. Disappointing.
M: 3.75 - Decent mouthfeel, lots of carbonation.
O: 3.25 - Very bland DIPA.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.39/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

why make this? its so average and not very good. these guys are capable of far better, and for finally putting out a new beer, i wanted a lot more out of this one. its nice in the glass, deep copper in color, thick tan head on it with great retention, but its all downhill from here. the nose is sweet like amber ale, malty and not much hops in the nose. in the taste all i really get is a strong metallic bitterness that lingers way too long. there is some sweetness in the middle, but the hops take it over, and not with much flavor but with extraordinary bitterness. its almost harsh to drink. the booze is well enough hidden, and the mouthfeel is nice, with a fuller body but upbeat carbonation. it just doesnt taste very good, and i really dont see the appeal. its not west coasty at all in terms of hop feel, and one glass is more than enough of this one from me. maybe it wasnt real fresh, i cant confirm a date, but i was really let down by this mess.

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Photo of tronester
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden to burnt orange with a thin, creamy offwhite head. Aromas of strong apricot and some mint. Taste is some big apricot, followed by a bit of vegetal flavor, some mint, and finishing with a hint of pine. Syrupy mouth feel. Overall a decent beer, but way too sweet and too weird a flavor profile for me.

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Photo of oceanman907
3.54/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A good looker of an IPA but not the best for flavor. Deep golden Amber with a frothy tan head with excellent lacing. Smell is also lovely with sweet grassy hops dominating. But the taste is all musty wet hay and sweet wort. Maybe this batch had passed its prime but I wasn't happy with the taste of the hops. Still it could be a good full bodied ipa when fresh.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From the 650 ml. bottle. Sampled on June 20, 2015.

Copper-amber almost mahogany pour under a long lasting cream colored head.

Aroma of resin, roasted malts, earth.

Medium body.

Not uber-hopped but there are plenty of hops in this DIPA. Just not the explosive kind. More sweet. Decent bitterness to end.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a dark, rust-copper coloring with a filmy, thin, white head. Aromas of rich, roasted caramel, tangy grapefruit and melon, subtle bitterness, and hints of spices. Flavors are tangy and tart tropical fruit forward, almost puckering, with a subtle and rich caramel backbone, citrus highlights towards the end of the palate, and a roasted character throughout. Only subtle bitter notes are noted, almost as accent pieces, throughout. Mid-bodied, but smooth and supportive of the bigger flavor profiles. The aftertaste is tangy and slightly bitter, with more of the pine and resin notes coming forward. Clean, light, smooth finish, with hints of dryness at the very end. Balanced and drinkable throughout for a beer this "size" and flavorful. Not bad at all.

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Photo of jeffjeff1
3.74/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- amber color, thin head

Smell- mostly citrus hops

Taste- citrus hops, well balanced, nice bitterness

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- I thought it was very good. I would love to have more of it. Just the right amount of bitterness! Very good!

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.74/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 9/30/13.

Pours a clear dark orange with a foamy orange-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grapefruit juice, citrus fruit, and citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest and dank 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 pretty good beer with some intense hop qualities that are stronger in the taste.

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Photo of Hopdaemon39
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

This one is pretty good but not my cup of tea- pours a clear amber color with a good two fingers of off white head and good retention and lacing.

The nose is a little fruity and floral- definitely smells like a higher alcohol beer.

Tastes pretty good- big malt thing going on and a little bit of jasmine tea, a little peach and lemon.

Mouthfeel is fine- medium full bodied and minimal carbonation. This is a pretty well balanced beer and if you like a malty IPA this is for you but I like things pretty bitter so I won't get it again.

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Photo of Mightykingmalard
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: deep amber. White head that breaks pretty quick. Almost a little red.

S: smells almost like a lager in my opinion. Doesn't smell much like a double ipa.

T: what it lacks in smell it delivers in taste. It has a malty bitterness that feels really good. Not too piney and nice and crisp.

M: has a pretty quick finish but it is pretty good.

O: a good beer but I wish it was a little more aromatic.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

To celebrate the life and longevity of the famous California red wood trees, some hops have to die- a lot of them! The woodsy and resiny taste packs a wallop of flavor and brings the intensity and complexity to boot.

Deep and sappy with amber, the ale pours with a heady bouquet of grapefruit, orange, apricot and pine. Its bold caramel sweetness carries a modest toastiness and a firm nutty backbone.

As the taste develops, its barleywine-esque sweetness and fullish body relaxes and the hops begin to project. Tangy and bitter with citrus peel and pith, the growing bitterness grips the throat and ushers in its assertion of leaf, stem, freshly shaven bark and intense resinous taste.

Trending maltier than most imperial IPA, its bitter-sweet finish carries a boozy bite that's stronger to taste than even its 8.3% indicates. An estery aftertaste sheds light on the beer's apricot, nectarine and mild jam character... and with a jolt of gin spiciness for extra measure.

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Photo of McStagger
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Firestone Beer without the Firestone label!

A: Pours a transparent faint amber/copper. Finger and a half of medium bubbled head. Khaki in color. Excellent lacing. Retention is moderate. Carbonation is minimal.

S: Fairly balanced between the malt and the hops. Lot of caramel coming off the nose. This is accentuated with sweet tropical notes of pineapple and mango. Danker, more resinous notes underneath. Lightly earthy, with a bit of the cat piss aroma. Hints of grapefruit and other citrus coming through as well. Not an aromatic monster, but it does smell quite nice.

T: Sweet up front, but turns immediately bitter. Resinous hop flavor of grapefruit skin, citrus pith and earthiness. Finish takes a turn south, with a big rush of grain rearing in the back of the throat. Bitterness reasserts in the finish and the lingering flavors are citrus and floral, with some earth/grain.

M: Light bodied, with minimal carbonation. Alcohol is well hidden, as is the large malt bill. However, the lack of carbonation leaves this one feeling slightly flat.

O: Good, if not underwhelming. Lacks the aggression of many DIPA's.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.84/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a Russian River pint glass.

A: Pours a clear copper with a slight chill haze. Forms a thin white head atop fairly low visible carbonation.

S: Toffee malts in near-balance with grapefruit rind and resinous hops.

T: Bright ruby red grapefruit dominates up front. Then some tropical fruit hops, sweet toffee and bready malts, and a touch of resin and floral hoppiness near the swallow. Moderate hop bitterness in the hang.

M: Medium body, carbonation sensation on the low side, and moderate alcohol presence.

O: Nothing bad here; nor anything great. It's a very drinkable but ultimately forgettable DIPA.

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Photo of Omnium
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bomber > Pint Glass

A - Rich amber color with a big thick foamy two fingers of off white head, thick lacing.
S - Tons of tropical fruits, mango, papaya, apple, sweet candy like malts.
T - Lots of tropical flavor in here, pineapple, mango, papaya, and there's a ton of malt that follows it, first its a very sweet caramel malt then it finishes with this toasted kinda flavor.
M - Very sticky, chewy and thick.
O - This actually tastes best when cold. As it warmed up it got less impressive, because the malt started to overpower everything.

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Photo of barczar
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Floral, perfume, bready, toasted malt. Fairly sweet, with a lightly bitter finish. More floral than anything. Muted citrus. Nicely balanced. Though the sweetness is a bit overwhelming.

Malt dominant. Would be nice to try fresh, but I doubt it'd get much better.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber with a very nice ivory head leaving behind soapy lacing throughout. The armoa picked up pine, grapefruit, light toffee, and caramel. The flavors begin with that light toffee and caramel undertones which leads to pine, resin, grapefruit and finishes off with a hop bitterness. Medium sticky mouthfeel and good carbonation. This DIPA was simple and technically well-made but somewhat lacking the adventure that I typically find in my favorite DIPAs.

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Photo of Mike_Bowling
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish gold with thick amber head. Nice resinous sweet DIPA with well controlled alcohol flavors. Particularly good with roast beef sandwich. Greatest strength is aftertaste. A minute or more of sweet pine with touch of citrus. Definitely a solid DIPA that I would buy again.

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a burnt orange with a one-finger foamy off-white head. The head dissapates quickly leaving some light soapy lacing.

S - Aroma of caramel malts, piney hops, and some light citrus.

T - The taste is very malt driven. Sweet caramel malts hit the palate first followed by a mix of citrus (orange and grapefruit) and earthy hops. There is strong citrus and more caramel malts in the finish.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbnation. Very smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Sticky finish.

O - This was an above average DIPA. Very malt forward with a nice citrus backbone. Very drinkable at 8.3% ABV.

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: slight haze; bronze in color; 1 finger off white head that receded to a thick collar; very nice lacing;

S: pineapple, grapefruit, pine, and a hint of floral;

T: equal parts pineapple and pine with a bit of grapefruit rind in the background; pineapple is a little more prevalent at the end; moderate bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation; moderately dry finish;

O: very nice combination of flavors;

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500 BC Double IPA from Humboldt Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.