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Ichor - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

86 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 86
Hads: 169
Avg: 3.9
pDev: 13.08%
Wants: 15
Gots: 22 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: NeroFiddled on 02-18-2003

This Abbey-style Quadruple brewed with German Pils and Roast malts and dark candi sugar, hopped with German Tradition hops. Luscious and seductive, Ichor is brewed for both the body and the soul. This beer will improve with careful aging but is ready to drink now.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 86 | Hads: 169
Photo of Wasatch
3.92/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to NutBrown for this brew.


Poured into a chalice a clean/clear dark ruby red color, some carbonation, no head or sticky lacing at all. The nose is malty, slight sweetness, some raisins, figs, plums, and caramel. The taste is sweet, malty, nice touch of dark fruits, and caramel. The alcohol is hidden pretty well. Medium body. Drinkable, I was kinda dissappointed in this one, no pop from the cork. The taste is nice tough.

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Photo of RyanPB
2.52/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Really didn't like this in the least. So little carbonation I thought it was a bad cork, until I read some other reviews. Looked great in terms of color, but no nose to speak of. Weyerbacher's Quad is superior across the board to my mind, including price in my neck of the woods. Thinking back on the Odyssey, perhaps the brewery's philosophy is different than mine.

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Photo of BloodySamFlint
3.86/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Out of 750ml Corked bottle,
A- Pours Murky dark chocolate brown, Zero Carbonation leading to no head.
S-Hint of spicy alcohol, chocolate and apple maybe?
T-rich malts, and the high alcohol content is well hidden, doesnt really make me think of a Quad, but pretty good.
M-smooth, but the lack of carbonation really hurts the score.
D- Not a session beer because of the 10% abv but not that hard to drink.

Quads are my favorite, from my experience this isnt a good representation of the Style. The carbonation factor really killed the score for me. It does taste good, and the smell is definitely the best quality of this beer.

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Photo of Sammy
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A rich and sweetish combonation of fruit and mild spices that was a delight to sip with supper.The promise is that this could age, I think it was 1.3 years in my basement. It was very little carbonated, and may be better on tap.
German Pils and Roast malts and Belgian Candi Sugar, German Tradition hops. The alcohol was present. Very much like an American take on the quad, still very good.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to gottajiboo2 for the chance to taste this ale. Shared w/ octopus87 decanted into a La fin du monde tulip cool.
A - The cork emits a high pitched 'poit' as it is pulled from the neck. Shades of raisins and date, a kind of dark caramel brown. The head appears and vanishes like whack-a-mole. The color of medium strength coffee as the liquid settles the head has a fine bead.

S - Very port and sherry-like aromas w/ raisin essence and dark candy sugar w/ a coriander and clove spiced essence Vinous aromas w/ tropical fruit esters and a bit of fusel odors. The nutty belgian malts peak out from under the boozy aroma.

M - Rich, sweet, candy-like, boozy and smooth. Harly a hint at the potency it contains. Sweet and spicy as it rolls down. Slightly low in the carbonation dept, but the feel suffers only minimally.

T - A big dose of sweetness w/ a brandy-like dryness in taste. Candy sugar and dry husky, lighty toasty malt w/ fruit and spice essence. Slightly oily w/ it's slick malty and light roasted taste w/ a woody aspect. Rum like as it warms w/ a subtle alcoholic bit. Sweet toasty as it comes to the smooth finish.

D - A bruiser it packs a wallop w/ concealed intensity. Half of the 750ml is a meal in itself. I love it, but a glass is filling a full of flavor, Prost!

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - rich reddish dark brown in color, a whisp of bubbles around the edges which quickly settle out and leave a trickle of bubbles coming up the sides of the glass.

S - ripe dark fruit, dark brown sugar, dark candi sugar and an underlying mild belgian yeast. Rich but on the sweet side of things.

T - follow's the aroma very closely. A bit more play in the yeast flavors but pretty much spot on with the aroma.

M - medium bodied, under carbonated and smooth.

D - nicely drinkable. Definitely on the sweet side and light bodied for how I prefer the style but easy to quaff.

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Photo of brentk56
2.76/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: I knew there was a problem when the cork released without a sound...pours out without producing any carbonation; rich caramel color

Smell: Caramel and dark fruit aroma

Taste: Starts out with a caramel sugar solution flavor that adds some dark fruit by mid-palate; no flavor progression after the swallow

Mouthfeel: Rich and syrupy; no carbonation

Drinkability: Like drinking liquid caramel; where's the quality control?

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Photo of ccrida
2.97/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Really had the wrangle the cork out of this 750ml bottle, with my teeth ultimately, only to have a headless pour with a wisp of light tan skim and no lace over a cola colored body. In it's defense, it's quickly roused with a swirl of the St. Feuillien goblet, but it recedes just as quickly. An overly vigorous 2nd pour roused a 1/4 inch head that that immediately vanished to a collar and swirled skim...

The smell is all dark stone fruit sweetness and a touch of spicy yeast. While it had it moments, it has an astringency to it that was unwelcome.

The taste is dominated by dark candi sugar. Theres a very rummy booze that works well, but is inadequately tempered by any yeasty complexity, save for a slight spiciness on the finish. Boarding on sugar bomb, this one's a diabetic's nightmare!

The mouthfeel is very light, easily passing the Belgian digestibility test, but seriously lacking in carbonation.

The drinkablity was low, because this one was so sugary and not very interesting. The light body made it a good candidate for a quick buzz if you had a serious sweet tooth for, which I sometimes do, but this was really too much. I brought this back from my last visit to Pittsburgh, and had been looking forward too it. While not a total disappointment, it's not a quad I'll be making any effort to have again.

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Photo of MmmIPA
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

I wanted to celebrate since i found a new job to go along with my present one and I had been craving a belgian style beer for a while and I have always saw this beer in stores and never bought it so I hough "what the hell" and bought it.I poured it into a Chimay goblet.

No head what so ever,nice clear red body,no carbonation either.Could this be flat?

Candi sugar,beets,yeast

Syrpy,dues to the fact that it was flat.Some chocolate,candi sugar,beets and plum.

No carbonation at all,very flat,no pop when the cork came out.Sorda thick, watery mouthful.

I would like to try this again but it must have some carbonation to it.I think this has a potential to be a good quad.

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Photo of BlindPig
3.23/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Thin tan head that fades fast! Dark body, when held to light you get hues of clear dark ruby.
S- Chocolate, plum, raisins, grass hops, toffee, and alcohol.
T- Strong esters, coffee, dark chocolate, alcohol, raisins, lots of sugars, some grass hops, and some plums. It comes off not to good at all and then as your taste buds get used to it, it is drinkable.
M- Full body, low carbonation.
D- Not to good. I would never buy this again. Just has some rough flavors and IMO you can tell this is an American attempt at it. Seems that they just threw a bunch of stuff together.

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Photo of hoppymeal
4.09/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark cola brown to black in color, mainly clear, a faint skirmish of whitish bubbles appears and is gone quickly. Rich and sugary bready aroma, with caramel and ripe raisins and other dark fruits mix with a strong aroma of alcohol. Taste follows with a very sweet and rich raisin flavor, a slight hint of tingling on the tongue fades into a good dose of warming alcohol. Very low carbonation keeps the beer from feeling to full and accentuates the drying alcohol in the finish. A very enjoyable beer for the style, big for sure, but in the right amounts. Had this in the cellar for 6mos to year.

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Photo of weeare138
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an aged version of the original bottling that was released in early 2003. It has been cellared since the day I bought it.
Appears a deep, rich mahogany with a dark red hue. A small, off white head slowly fades out into a film and collar.
Smell is of tons of candi-sugar, vinuous, port wine, roasted nuts, tobacco, cocoa, hints of cola, slight oxidation with mild cardboard notes, caramel, light cherries, wood notes, figs, & sawdust.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a light bubblegum, cherry, and caramel flavor rising to the top of the palate.
Mouthfeel is of low CO2, full bodied with light cardboard, nuts, semi-dryness and a slightly rough ending.

I had this side by side with a fresh growler from 2007 and a bottled version from last year. I rated this version almost identically to the fresh version. Next to each other they looked the same. Nose wise and flavor wise, this has matured a bit and would be appealing to those who appreciate a more dense aroma and flavor as opposed to the fresh, more estery version.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.33/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bloody chestnut with orange peel trim. It's never good when removing the cork results in complete silence. The fact that almost no head formed on the pour is further evidence that there's a serious lack of carbonation. At most, I got a slim one finger of beige froth that is now almost gone. I have a feeling this won't be a good experience.

The nose is more dark lager than it is Belgian quadrupel. There's a faint hint of dark malt and that's about it. With precious few bubbles, how can the beer be aerosolized enough to make an impact on my nose? The obvious answer is that it can't.

I was all set to be disappointed, but Ichor is surprisingly intact on the palate. Sure, it's as flat as a pancake, but given my penchant for subdued carbonation in most styles (most Belgians excepted), I don't mind all that much. The good thing is that it doesn't seem to have adversely affected the flavor... much.

Ichor is as much a BSDA as it is a quadrupel. It's dark fruity (fig preserves, raisin paste, dark rum-soaked plums) and is moderately spicy (clove primarily). There's also quite a bit of dark candi sugar present, which gives it a dark caramel-burnt sugar vibe. In fact, I could almost believe that it was aged in bourbon barrels. I don't mind the well-integrated booziness one bit.

Needless to say, the mouthfeel needs a lot of help. I can deal with the lack of animation (as long as I pretend it's low-ABV dark rum rather than high-ABV beer), but the thinness is far from appropriate for a quadrupel. Although all that sugar gives it some amount of finishing stickness, there's nothing of substance behind it. I can only dream what the beer would be like with two or three times as much viscosity... which is exactly what is needed.

It's obvious that Ichor is a better beer than the one I opened today. It's be great to experience it as the brewers intended, but I have no desire to trade for another bottle (thanks BitterBrian) since there's no guarantee I'll get a good one next time. My impression is that Sly Fox BC is a good brewery that better pay closer attention to quality control if they want to play in the big leagues.

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Photo of Phatz
4.02/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A bottle shared with Mac300 and his wife Jess, and DarkerTheBetter at the 5th Annual Philly/BA gathering. What a treat that we ended up at Sly Fox. I enjoyed this beer though my deer friend Jess did not. The beer has about as much carbonation as a smooth bottle of wine. AKA, none. That was a turnoff for her. I felt the beer is tasty nightcap type of beer but cetainaly minimal on drinkability.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with a touch of ruby to the hue and very very little colar around the edge even after a hard pour there was little head that dissipates right away.

Smell: Dark fruits and warm alcohol. Plum prune raisin cherry and brown sugar in the nose.

Taste: Like the nose it is dominantly sweet and warm. It seems reminiscent of the wheat wine I had the other night the warm green grape and sweet wheat attribute but the cherry and fig attribute are there as well with some sherry.

Mouthfeel: Very viscous and yet slick smooth edges due to the fact that there is no carbonation.

Drinkability: It is a *sweet* nightcap beer. I was happy to be sharing one bottle.

Hope this is helpful.

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Photo of bjohnson
2.26/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Another big thanks to warriorsoul for handing this off to me. you are too kind. After a labor intensive 5 minutes of prying the cork out, it finally popped--crap that took awhile.

A: Pours a very dark brown with a reddish tint to it. Very soapy and bubbly head dissipates very fast--no retention on the head. Bubbles on the sides of the glass make me believe it's carbonated, but I'm not sure as the cork slide out of the bottle and didn't pop. Looking at the cork now, I see it didn't expand outward as most corks in beer bottles do once they're popped. This almost looks like an aggressively poured red wine.
S: Spicy and wheaty in the nose with intense fruit. Cherries and other dark fruits. Those are the perfect aromas to a quad. The spicyness is subdued and the fruit aromas are hefty.
T/M: Well, this isn't carbonated at all. Flat, well, no sir, I don't particularly like my beer flat, unless it's on cask. Since it took me about 5 minutes to pry the cork out, well...I'm not a happy camper right now. Tastes like thick sweet juic with a wheaty aftertaste--those are layman's terms if you weren't aware. Wheaty notes aren't big but definitely noticeable. Dark fruit--fig and plum--notes covered in spices and a candied thickness stick to the palate and don't let go. Cough syrup like flavors towards the back of the throat and on the tongue made me cringe a bit. Aftertaste of wheaty cough syrup to put it bluntly. Unfortunately this wasn't the best quad in the world.
D: This went the way of the drain after the first snifter. Quality control problem? Possibly. If I cross the brew again, I'd be tempted to pick it up as it could be a great one.

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Photo of orsulacp
2.53/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I must have gotten a bad bottle of this; it was way off and not up to par with other Sly Fox beers. I will review it with hopes to try it again. The body was deep ruby with no head and very little carbonation. I got a strong whiff of wet cardboard with muted alcohol and pepper. There was a cherry flavor with a little pepper, the taste was way off. The wet cardboard smell really did this beer in; I couldn't taste much because of the smell. The low carbonation gave a really syrupy body. I am assuming I got a bad bottle.

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Photo of Crosling
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sensational brew. I’m not going to say this is on par with Westvleteren or Rochefort, but this is definately one of the better American examples I’ve tried. A little confused by it low score, perhaps it’s a newer, more improved batch. Yum, this is a great beer. The mouthfeel could definately be a bit creamier and more heavy and I wish the finish was a little more lasting, BUT this is still a great brew, worth seeking out.

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Photo of akorsak
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A snifter-sized glass poured at Iron Hill West Chester's Belgium Comes to West Chester.

A: The ale is a muddy creek brown color, brownish with a lot of haze. As I drank the ale, the haze became more concentrated in the bottom of the snifter.

S: The aroma is malty sweetness with a fruity aroma that highlights darker fruits.

T: The flavor is full-bodied malts, thick and chewy and not shy on the alcohol. As the ale sits on the tongue, some prunes and raisins stick out, providing a nice malty fruit base. Some bittering hops shine on top of the malts, but the malts are the star here. The flavors finish long and climax in a nice yeasty thickness.

M: The alefruits are delicious, providing a darker depth to the strong malts.

D: I wrote this beer off after an earlier tasting but clearly that was premature. This is a strong quad, full of malty strength and a very nice product. Thank God for second chances!

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.21/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Hopdog: Poured a dark brown color ale with a small foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of dry sweet fruits and cookie dough is quite nice and enjoyable. Taste is generally lighter then expected with some sweet fruit and light cookie dough being enjoyable but less complex then I would have liked it to be. Body is way too thin for the style and carbonation is very low which doesn’t fit the style IMHO. Alcohol is well hidden and I would have to say that this a fair example of the style but better carbonation and fuller body would be even better.

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Photo of Billolick
4.04/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Caged and corked Belgian bomber. $7.50 from New Beer in NYC. No vintage/bottling info. Opened with no pop, hmm, poured with little head being generated, low carbonation noted. Darkest of brown shades, no head, no lacing. Nose is strongly of raisiny bourbon. Strong, heady brew, notes of more raisins, cola, vanilla,brandy, dark grains and ripe fruits, on the sweet side, could use some more thickness on the palate. Fine brew that could use some more complexity and depth to earn world class scores. I'd like to try this one with a year or two in the bottle. Still well worth a try. Nice cold weather night caper.

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Photo of fartingdog
4.27/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this thanks to zrrbrrt.

It had some sticky beer residue around the edge of the cork, so I figured I ought to drink it right off. Not a sound of carbonation upon uncorking. After removing the cork, i noticed it was gray and feared the worst.

Poured with zero head. None. Bummer.
Aroma was fine- quite good actually. Notes of vanilla, sasparilla?, raisin. Very appealing and no signs of spoilage. Taste is also superb, and there's a slight pleasant bite on the tongue. Faint alcohol warming at the finish, but well masked. Very, very drinkable.

I think that if there was some head to this, it would be an amazing beer, but I'd reccommend it regardless.

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Photo of goodbyeohio
2.93/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

my bottle says it was brewed and bottled in royersford. for what its worth, the label (pictured, right) is kick-ass. their graphic design is tops in the world of beer packaging. it's a shame the beer doesn't look so good.

the bottle opens with a thpftpop. for those of you who don't speak in cork sounds, that means that the sound the cork made being pulled out of the bottle is akin to a wet.. um, 'tube' sliding out of a um.. 'hole'. nothing. no carbonation, no buildup, nothing. when i pour it.. well.. it's the right color, but too much light is getting through. there are crimson highlights where there should be more complex darkness, and there is a reflective brown shine where there should be bubbles and hazy clouds.

the beer smells pretty good. bright fruity berry hints , slightly phenolic but not overpowering. a crisp waft of tart red apple and a complex belgian sugary sweetness. warmth and deeper inhales bring banana to the phenol and even a hint of sweetly spiced african coffee beans.

mouthfeel is awful. it's painfully thin for the boozy and sweet shock that hits you. although it doesn't overpower the flavor, its like drinking something caustic or otherwise assaultive to the taste buds. before you have a chance to enjoy it, you've taken too much in and your face sucks up in a death cringe. it's too sweet, in an unfermented way. the candied fig and date puree flavors that i like in belgian quads are there, but go somewhat underappreciated due to the mess this beer has created. i am really kind of afraid before i take each sip, although its not bad enough to drain pour.

i wonder if time would have done anything here. somehow i doubt it, and i tried this back in april and dug it.. so, in closing, i'd say drink them fresh and hope you hear a popppzz and not a thrpftpop.

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Photo of drinknewbelgium
3.82/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance dark mahaganony almost with very little head smells of apple and alcohol tastes of apple and candi sugar with nice hops and completed by alcohol flavors the mouthfeel is thin for a quadrupel but is good for a domestic representation id say i could a 750 bottle then wait a few days and have any more

comments yea this is a recommendation nice interpretation of a belgian

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Brought back from PA by expatsteve. Thanks for the opportunity.

Pour: deep, dark garnet/mahogany, mostly clear, no real head to speak of...alcohol?

Nose: vinuous blast of fermented grapes, raisins, molasses, cherries, light yeast

Taste: molasses and caramel sweetness, musty yeast, dark fruits, grape juice, dry, clean booze in the finish.

Feel: where this one falls short, a little thin, a little flat. I like a little more crispness in a Belgian like this.

Drinkability/Overall: Another completely solid beer from Sly Fox. Ridiculously drinkable for a quad of 10%. Not a mind-blower, but well-made on most fronts and hart to fault in too many places.

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Photo of dherling
4.27/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured out a clear dark brown with no head whatsoever. Had a huge nose, I mean a tremendously big nose. Raisin, cherry, cranberry, sherry, alcohol, all playing very nicely together. The body was sweet, but not cloying. It had honey, mollasses, raw sugar. This gave way to some other interesting flavors, orange, cola, sherry. It went down a little oily slick and viscous, warm too. Had a lot going on, especially the sweeter flavors, but not poorly balanced at all. Really enjoyable.

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Ichor from Sly Fox Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 86 ratings.