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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.
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 53 | Hads: 308
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 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 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 wethorseblanket
3.99/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap.

A: Pours a hazed dark orange with a quarter-inch thich white head which leaves sheet and spotty lace behind.

N: Caramel malts, citrus and piney hops with some floral notes.

T: Citrus (oranges, tangerines), peach/pear, piney, mild sweetness and faintly dank.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Finishes with a sweet malt and pine resin.

O: More malt than hop presence, but still solid.

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Photo of oberon
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pous into an oversized wine glass a clear full bronze with a foamy but tightly formed one finger white head that sticks like glue to the glass as it settles very slowly.Tropical fruits dominate the nose,like grilled pineapple and mangos with their sugars really coming out,some alcohol and caramel lends sweetness.Tropical boozy fruitiness dominates the palate,there is a mild grasiness that lends complexity to the hop profile.Not overly sweet for the style wich I like,it is sweet but not the main point of the beer.Wow a kick ass DIPA from Humboldt,a little surprising but in a real good way.

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Photo of mactrail
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Tremendous spicy hop and mango aroma. Color is a deep amber with a touch of orange in the Saxo tall tulip. Handsome and long-lasting head. Smooth and tickly mouthfeel.

Great fruity flavors, more of the mango with a deep malty sweetness that seems just right to balance the huge hops. Sweet orange marmalade with that bitter peel taste. One of the best DIPAs I've had this year, and a real surprise. Pleasingly bitter finish well within the realm of drinkability. Less acidic than a lot of these big IPAs.

This one should help Humboldt's image as a serious brewer. If Anchor had made something this good, for a change, people would go beserk. From the 22 oz bottle bought at Bine & Vine in San Diego.

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Photo of russpowell
3.99/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent copper with 2 fingers of eggshell white head. Nice head retention & lacing

S: Pineapple & grapefruit & leafy hops

T: Follows the nose, pears, a touch of breadyness & orange rind up front. Grapefruit pith, a touch of tangerine & pear, plus a little boozeyness as this warms. Finishes with tons of tropical fruit & a bit of toffee sweetness & dryness

MF: Fairly chewy, soft carbonation, nicely balanced

Solid DIPA, not hoppy enough for hard core hopheads I'm sure, easy drinker more or less

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 10/9/2014. Pours fairly crystal clear deep orange/copper color with a 2 finger fairly dense and fluffy light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with some light streaming carbonation. Aromas of big tangerine, pineapple, peach, mango, lemon zest, orange peel, light pine, honey, caramel, light toast, and floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of juicy citrus/tropical hops and moderate malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of big tangerine, pineapple, peach, mango, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, honey, caramel, light toast, and floral/grassy earthiness. Fair amount of pine/grassy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of tangerine, pineapple, peach, mango, lemon/orange zest, pine, honey, caramel, light toast, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity and balance of citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate malt sweetness; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth and fairly creamy/sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with a small warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent DIPA. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of bright citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.29/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a crystal clear medium copperish amber in color with light to moderate amounts of active visible carbonation slowly rising from the bottom of the glass and some apricot + golden yellow highlights. The beer has a finger tall sudsy foamy off-white head that slowly reduces to a medium sized thin patch and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of tropical/pineapple and tropical/mango hops along with some lighter notes of sweet caramel malts and a touch of alcohol.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of sweet caramel malts which is followed by moderate to strong flavors of hops - first tropical/pineapple and tropical/mango but followed by some lighter notes of herbal hops. Light amounts of bitterness which fades fairly quickly.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with slightly more than moderate amounts of carbonation. Upfront it is lightly crisp with a light amount of stickiness in the finish. Touches of dryness as well.

O: This beer has a really nice balance between the sweetness of the malts and the bitterness of the hops - not overly sweet like many others in the style but with great flavors from the hops (without a lot of associated bitterness). Fairly easy to drink and quite enjoyable - pairs nicely with the homemade pizza with BBQ pork, kale, mushrooms, pineapple, and jalepeños.

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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 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 LiquidAmber
4.01/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a medium coppery amber with a fine two finger aged ivory colored head with great retention and tons of lacing. Bright aroma of tropical fruit and citrus hops upon opening the bottle followed by bready malt, tropical fruit and citrus hops in the glass. Flavor is rich sweet malt, citrus rind, grassy and citrus hops with a nice herbal and citrus hop finish. Medium bodied with a very pleasant creaminess. A pleasant citrusy IPA with a deep malt body. Maltier than other IPAs brewed by Firestone Walker, but tasty and well hopped. Perhaps this was the way they made them in 500 BC.

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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 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 pat61
4.51/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bbig herbal vegetal nose – close to mint with some dark sugars on the nose. Pours brilliant copper amber under a 1” white foam cap that descends to a thick film that produces significant lace. Has a big palate with initial fruit, citrus, light berry, then a big drying hop bitterness. Finishes dry with a lingering bitterness that somewhat resembles the tannin like bitterness in black tea. Above average carbonation with a medium full body. Has an excellent creamy texture and a very nice mix of bitter and berry.

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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 RoyalT
4.47/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This is a beautiful muddy orange in color with some faint brown notes and a good, off-white, malty-looking head.

Smell – The dry-hopping here is apparent with a rich, resiny nose of big citrus and sharp pine along with a balancing malty caramel sweetness.

Taste- This DIPA delivers at the taste. The hops are very complex, smooth yet sharp at the same time, and a perfect balance of pine and orange. The grain is high-quality with the requisite sweetness needed to offset the intense hop flavors.

Mouthfeel – This is lighter than one would expect with all the intense flavors. It’s a solid medium-bodied which is cool. Often these monster DIPAs are closer to full and very filling but this is a bit thinner and very smooth. A session DIPA? LOL not quite but incredibly smooth.

Drinkability – Are you kidding me? How could any hop-loving beer-drinker not rate this at least a 4. Personally I find this one of the most quaffable DIPAs I’ve ever had. This is my first taste of a Humboldt brew but I am very impressed.

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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 arizcards
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bomber from BevMo in mid-December for $8.69. Bottled on 9-27-13.

Beer poured golden orange with a decent white head that is leaving a little lacing behind.

Nose is tropical pungent hops.

Taste is tropical and pine hops forward with some balance provided by caramel malts. Pine resin lingers in the after taste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, mildly carbonated and pretty smooth.

Overall this is a delicious brew, i like the tropical hop play. Glad i had the opportunity to try this!

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

After a round of disc golf on a course with insane terrain changes, I was very happy to find this on draft at Cork & Cask in Cornelius, NC.

Pours darker than most IPA's, and smells and tastes much more roasty than expected. It's definitely an IPA, floral nose and taste, bitter and fruity and really well balanced by the malt. I just read this is a limited release, brewed once. That would be a shame, it's an excellent beer.

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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 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 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 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 stephens101
4.39/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The tan head fades slowly into this blood red brew. A pocked residue leeches to the sides of the glass. Looks magnificent.

To the nose we have pine, citrus and caramel goodness.

Taste not unlike biting into a caramel and hop pie, or what I can assume one tastes like, even though they don't exist outside of surreal dessert-land. Almost chewy going down with hella residual vanilla and alcohol notes. A little spicy way back and lightens up as it goes.

Creamy and delicious all the way. I'll have another slice please!

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