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Imperial IPA - Garrison Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial IPAImperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

121 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 121
Hads: 214
Avg: 4.07
pDev: 14.25%
Wants: 22
Gots: 14 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Garrison Brewing Company visit their website
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MMansfield on 08-11-2007

Launched and enthusiastically received at the first annual Halifax Seaport Beer Fest in August 2007, this ale has quickly become known as the hoppiest beer in Atlantic Canada! Unfiltered Imperial I.P.A. is a robust, full-bodied and complex brew in the Double IPA style. An intensely fruity aroma combines nicely with a malty caramel backbone, clear hop bitterness and lingering citrusy finish. This beer is for the true hophead!

81 IBU

This beer was previously known as Garrison Imperial Pale Ale.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 121 | Hads: 214
Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice to finally see some Garrison brews out east...

Poured into a nonic. A lovely light orange russet brew, sporting a substantial creamy head with loads of lacing sheets. Remarkable retention, a sturdy layer lasting throughout the pint.

Nose is all hoppy goodness - a fine blend of pine, citrus and leaf, with some caramel malts and bread in the back.

Tasty stuff, not the hopslam I had expected, but nevertheless a flavorful hoppy brew. I find with some IPA/DIPAs that my tastebuds acclimatize quite a bit, so with this one I found the hop character less pronounced as I went through it. Caramel malt flavor provides a backdrop, but the leafy, citrussy hops are allowed to be the stars of the show. Finished slightly nutty, with a long bitter finish. Alcohol is barely present, if at all.

Mouthfeel was slightly watery, but creamy and with solid carbonation. A pleasure to drink.

This was the brew from Garrison I was waiting for, and it did not disappoint. One of the better Canadian strong IPAs I've come across. Rich and flavorful, a great evening sipper. Not hopped enough to become burdensome, but the high ABV reduces the appropriateness of sessioning. Great stuff.

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Photo of liamt07
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 500ml bottle, dated January 19, 2010, into my new Propellor pint glass (bottle and glass courtesy of Long813). Past it's prime clearly, but I'll keep that in mind.

Pours a deep orange/amber with a finer or so of eggshell white head. Good head retention, with still a significant amount of fat, chunky lacing. Aroma is of grapefruits, but the malts have a huge presence here; very sweet, bready and caramel-like. Taste is initially of a quick punch of hop bitterness, supported tremendously by solid malt base, again not overly sweet, but balanced, smooth and of a caramel/toffee flavour. Mouthfeel is full and balanced, with a slightly astringent and dry finish. Bitterness lingers significantly. Drinkability is quite good, not a huge blast of hops and again, balanced and easy to put back. Alcohol is non-existent here. Would've loved to have tried this fresh, and will definitely re-review this when I do.

EDIT: Bottle as part of the recent LCBO release, less than a month and a half old. Appearance ranks the same, excellent lace and retention. Greater citrus and hop presence in the nose, so much more fruity and huge toffee malt compared to how I remember. Taste ranks the same, bigger bitterness this time round. More chewiness. Smell bumped up from a 3.5 to a 4, and drinkability from a 4 to a 4.5. One of the better ones in Canada, a few notches below the 10BY.

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Photo of grub
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pubstyle hooked me up with this one. thanks troy!

22oz bottle. unfiltered.

pours slightly hazy reddish copper colour with a thick, dense cream coloured head. drops slowly and leaves tons of lace behind.

aroma is good. biscuity malt. light alcohol. grapefruit and orange.

taste is good. medium-high bitterness level. bit of alcohol. bread and biscuit malts. grapefruit. bit of orange. touch of caramel sweetness. the malt fills out a little more as it warms, which is nice.

mouthfeel is good. medium carbonation level. medium body.

drinkability is good. nicely balanced, maybe leaning a touch too far towards bitterness when it was cold, but it balances nicely once warmed a little. looking forward to trying more from these guys.

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Photo of demcorhip
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to NASH, for not only brewing this tasty treat but trading me some.

A beautiful looking brew. Unfiltered and opaque pale coppery brown brew. Big, tight, four finger pale tan head on a mildly aggressive pour. Seems finely and mildly carbonated as I cant see any carbonation streams due to the murky body of this ale. Head decently retained, and left a good thick web of lacings.

Biscuit and crusty multigrain bread, caramel and a hint of diacetyl in there too. Floral and citrusy hops, mostly orange scented, and woody and piney aromas also present. Earthy qualities also present, as is a slight yeasty? mustiness that doesnt detract from the overall aroma of this brew.

Solid biscuity malt backbone, flavours much like in the aroma of whole grain crusty bread and some caramel. Hops fairly assertive, but not typical of the american IPA style, but its fair to say this is one amped up pale ale that lies somewhere between IPAs, pale ales, and perhaps even strong ales. Mostly floral and earthy, woody hop bite from the Magnum hops. Then Cascade make an appearance, with flavours of orange and pine.

A big bodied brew, somewhere between medium and full bodied. Rich and solid malt backbone bends but doesnt break under a solid hop assault. Very mildly carbonated, works nicely with the big, smooth, and slightly creamy feel. Hops almost approach resinous and stripping feel at the finish, which is slightly astringent.

The mild astringent finish makes it easy to keep coming back for another drink of this refreshing big bodied brew. Alcohol noticeable, but not too assertive, so in no way does it detract from the drinkability. While in no way typical, easy drinking session fare, this would be a great beer to tip back all night long.

My only complaint was the slight mustiness, but this was something that my palate quickly accustomed itself to, and in no way detracted from my enjoyment of this tasty brew. Lucky Haligonians. Hopefully this is a sign of things to come for Canadian brewing.

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Photo of Mit
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a trade from fellow Canadian BA BBrianBoogie.

Holy cow just let me say...if I could get this on a regular basis along with some other Canadian notables I would travel across the border waaaay less often for my hop fix.

Appearance: A nice cloudy coppery red colour. Beautifully hazy with a nice creamy head that lasted for about a min or two.

Smell: A fantastic grapefruity hop aroma emanates from the glass giving away the hoppiness to come.

Taste: Just fantastic. A very nice bitter hop flavour permiates the initial tasting leaveing a nice spicy aftertaste. Some nutty notes were noticed with some maltiness coming through. Hops were very prevalent here.

Mouthfeel: It felt a little heavier than the 7.0% abv. Didn't detract from beer at all.

Drinkability: Very drinkable, but the 7% would probably get in the way of having too many of these.

I would hope that with the growing popularity of craft beer that Garrison can start making in roads into Ontario. I would buy this beer on a very regular basis for sure. I mean they still think Alexander Keiths is an IPA in Ontario...LOL.

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Photo of Rijtjeshuis
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in snifter.

LOOK (4/5) Pours a strong orange color - more than many other IIPAs I've had. The brew was fairly cloudy (I believe it is unfiltered). This opaquity sets of the color really well. The head was great! It was bone white and very creamy. It lasted for a long time, reduced to a substantial cap and left good lacing.

SMELL (4.5/5) The nose is dominated by hops. The malts are more of a bread/grain - not a huge amount of sweetness is given off, though, and the overall impression is dry. The use of different hops produces some real complexity here - this falls into the resiny/piney spectrum with does of citrus, grapefruit, and grassy dry-hops in there. A bit of hard water, I think, gives a bit of an extra zing.

TASTE (4/5) The flavor is pretty much featuring the same players as the nose. The balance is a bit more hoppy, though. The balance between the hop flavor and the bitterness of the hops is spot on - both were intense, though.

FEEL (4/5) The body is medium-full and the carbonation is medium (a bit more than, for instance, Tree Brewing's IIPA). This makes for a fluffy feel. Really nice

DRINK (4/5) Good for sipping, but way too intense to be a session beer. I really like that the hop flavor was in good balance with the bitterness!

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Photo of EsoxLucius
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: a cloudy orange, very nice and interesting looking.

S: citrus and hops came out on top with some sweetness. bit of the bite of the ABV came out too.

T: hoppy and bitter, not in a bad way, i very much enjoyed drinking this beer, full of positive flavors.

M: decent body with minimal trace of its potency.

D: very good, i drank these all the time on my honeymoon to Nova Scotia and smuggled some back in a suitcase ;)

they're all gone now. =(

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Photo of
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - honey-orange in colour with a thin head that dissipates to a persistent cap.

Smell - The aroma is a wonderful belnd of hops and malt featuring caramel, biscuit, pineapple, grapefruit, and pine.

Taste - The taste is heavy on hops, as one would expect with an imperial IPA. Upfront its malty and fruity, but the hops are right behind bringing a really intense bitterness. The finish is a bit biscuity, with a lingering bitterness. I could do with a little more hop flavour and less bitter punch, but this is still a very good IIPA.

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Photo of bobsy
4.11/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had this beer several times, in bottles during a stay in Halifax, as part of a private order in Toronto, and on draft at the brewery itself. While it doesn't quite hang with the big boys, its a fine Canadian hopbomb.

The body is a cloudy orange colour (its unfiltered), and the pour generates a sticky off-white head that laces prodigously. Retention is also very good.

Earthy, hoppy aroma with a mixture of pine and sweet citric notes. Lots of citrus and pine in the flavour, which certainly veers to the hoppy end of the spectrum, and makes for a slightly unbalanced beer, and a hopheads wet dream. Tangerine and grapefruit mixed in with resin. Caramel and light biscuit provide the malt backbone, but this spine has osteoporosis. Good mouthfeel for the style...almost chewy and oily. Considering the bitterness, the drinkability is really high, and I could definitely drink a few in the evening. The ABV is a strange one, pitching this beer between an IPA and IIPA.

Deserving of its spot in Canada's top 25, I'm sure this would hold up well south of the border.

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Photo of BasementBer
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As a practicing hophead and living in a place where range of beer selection is hard to come by, particularly of those brewed and worth brewing in Canada, I look forward to giving this unfamiliar brewery/ale a go.

A: Twofingers of foamy head with medium-tight creamy bubbles. Nice amber hue. Great lacing consistency, as should be expected from the level of bitter resins in the style. Light sediment in the bottle as expected from an unfiltered Ale.

S: Mmm, Hops. Nothin like the smell of fresh hops. A full robust citrusy aroma.

T: A surprising hop choice for the bittering. Didn't expect it, more like a saaz or hallertauer bittering hope rather than what would be used in an American IPA. Perhaps, Garrison see's itself in the European tradition.

M: Good carbonation and bitter mouth-feel as expected from an imperial style. Great lingering contribution provided by the range of bitterness.

D: Not overly powerful as some Imperial IPAs, and yet still more of a savoring IPA that is meant to be gradually enjoyed.

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Photo of trevorwideman
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle poured into a pint glass. Thanks so much to mmansfield for sending me this! Unfiltered version.

Vigorous pour produces 1 inch of pillowy off-white head and lots of lovely lacing. This is the murkiest IPA I've ever seen, brownish-gold-copper-whatever, almost opaque with sediment. Pretty intense looking. Aroma is very floral and sweet with hints of citrus and mango. Background malty notes create a light caramel and vanilla base. Lovely and uncluttered and balanced.

Taste is very impressive. Herbal licorice notes, a bit of pine, grapefruit, and juicy mango with a little vanilla. Bready malt in the background, a bit cakelike. Really nice balance. My only quibble is a bit of a papery note that comes through in the finish, I assume this is a fresh bottle, so where is it coming from? Mouthfeel is lively with a zippy carbonation and medium body. A little less dry than I expected in the finish, but it does have a big malt presence. This is a beer I could drink all night long, but the 6.9% might hamper that a little. With the big body and the massive hop bill this could easily have been dropped into the DIPA Category.

All in all drink for Haligonians to be proud of, and the best beer I've had yet from Nova Scotia. All hail the new Garrison!

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Photo of mick303
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Garrison Imperial IPA
Poured a bright coppery gold colour, a bit of haze from being unfiltered. Nice white whispy lacing. 3.75
S – lots of juicy grapefruit, lemon, some crystal malt, florals come in, a big dose of cascade likely, some caramel sweetness, smooth and juicy hops profile. Inviting. 4
T – a citrusy, bitter start, grapefruit and orange rind, herbal hoppiness, really juicy, some astringent herbal bitterness, this one certainly has some biting bitterness which is nice. Malts hold up some bready and caramel notes but don’t really balance out the heavy hop load in this and it leave a slick oily bitterness. Finish is pleasant, some semisweet malts and citrus/floral notes. Overall this is a strong and rambunctious showcase of citrus hops, initially there is a lack of malt balance but when this develops the beer really comes into its own, some floral minerality, earthy notes, all ties together by a dry resiny finish. 4.25
M – moderate body with a full creamy, smooth carbonation, quite sessionable and in tune with this style, carries a heavy bittering load with a slick and dry finish that works quite well. 4
A little astringent but otherwise a very solid IIPA, thick malty profile loaded with cascade hops, oily and resinous in feel, quite nice all round. Still lacking to the best examples but a nice step up and I would surely consider getting this again. One of the better Canadian attempts at the style Ive sampled. 4

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Photo of polloenfuego
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From the bottle to a tulip

A: orange/amber in color with somewhere between a one and two finger soapy head. The head breaks rather quickly leaving nice lacing and some islands of foam.

S: pine and citrus hops with a touch of malt sweetness there too.

T: follows the nose, with the malts playing a bigger role on the tail end. Really enjoyable.

M: good carbonation, medium body.

O: a nice IIPA. I enjoy these more than the usual IPA offerings as I find them a little more flavorful. Garrison does a good job with this beer, its fragrant, flavorful and easy to drink. I will look for more.

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Photo of DenisKolkin
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle purchased at LCBO for $4.10 CDN. Served fairly cold into a pint glass. Advertised as 8% ABV.

Appearance - Slight hazy copper / orange color. 2 Fingers of creamy white head with great retention and lacing. Clear and a some visible carbonation. One of the best looking IPA's I've had.

Smell - Pin, with a bit of lemon, but restrained in the citrusy smell. Definitely leans towards the piney aspect of IPA's as opposed to the citrusy side. Slight earthy undercurrent too.

Taste - More grapefruit and lemon here than expected, quite bitter; hopheads to enjoy. Also some big malts in play here that I haven't run across very often. There's also a orangy tangerine-esque citrus flavor running amok behind the scenes. Nice interplay between the two. Speaking from my limited experience I see this as a cross between Amsterdam Boneshaker and Founders Centennial IPA with Nova Scotia flair. All in all quite tasty.

Mouthfeel - Smooth, rich and full tasting with great crispness. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Really enjoyable IPA, that while coming with a steep price is one of the best beers I've had recently.

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Photo of biegaman
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This cinnamon bark colour is striking; the beer's look is beyond merely appealing, it is alluringly attractive - if not to say downright tantalizing. Its provocative blush is made further handsome by a distinctive clamato-red tinge that is derived from the light. Clarity is issued but cannot be observed due to the deep, toasty tone. Its head, with its velvety texture and fluffy consistency, is the consummate embodiment of the word 'creamy'.

If you're going to tack the word 'imperial' onto your pale ale (or virtually any other style for that matter) a gluttonous use of hops is of cardinal importance. It smells like Garrison understood that rule well. And, although hops should be preeminent, malt selection matters too. Again, this is something the brewmaster seemed to be well aware of. This aroma has both the stinky, pungent, resiny hops as well as toasty, sweet caramel maltiness.

And both are displayed well in the taste too, the hops definitely garnering more attention. Their drying, bitter, pithy citric grapefruit flavour combines with just a dash of spice and a musty, earthy kind of leafiness that lends the beer a sassy, brass and certainly delicious taste. 2-row pale, caramel, and sparing uses of Munich and Dextrin malts contribute a few ounces of biscuit and caramel to the flavour as well as prop up the mouthfeel.

The brewer seems to have gotten his money's worth out of these Amarillo and Magnum hops. The beer takes on a number of characteristics, including: citric, leafy, resinous, spicy and flowery. Die-hard hopheads might wish for a slightly larger dosage (silly hopheads, always want more! more!! more!!!) but there's no arguing about the quality of this beer's hoppiness; it has the malts beat out by at least a yard-stick.

Garrison's Imperial Pale Ale may not only be the hoppiest beer in Atlantic Canada, it may also be one of the best. Leaving the beer unfiltered has blessed it with a gorgeous appearance, using a voracious amount of fruity, charismatic hops has rendered the beer with a fragrant aroma, distinctive taste and awfully charming persona. Other Canadian brewers take note: This is what a nicely hopped beer should look, smell and drink like.

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Photo of tbeckett
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - A nice cloudy orange/amber body with nice carbonation streaming up the sides of the glass forming a fluffy, thick, off-white head that clings to the glass nicely, leaving nice lacing as it goes. Towards the end the lacing is gorgeous and there is a half finger of head left with an ice cream scoop in the middle.

S - Huge hop aroma without putting my nose to it. Nice pine comes out at first. Mild grapefruit is there with maybe caramel.

T - Woah, hop bomb. Massive pine hop blast with a little bit of that malty caramel taste. Don't get me wrong though, this is hop forward. Very bitter finish that lingers and feels like it's shredding my tastebuds. I like the taste.

M - Full bodied with carbonation where it should be.

D - Good drinkability on this. Lower ABV for an imperial IPA. The bitterness might hold me back on this but it's still delicious. According to their website it only clocks in at 70 IBU and the lingering piney characteristic shows it.

A solid beer that was a nice addition to the LCBO fall release.

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Photo of mdaschaf
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to korguy123 for this one

A: Pours a hazy orange color with a white one finger head. Very nice lacing down the side of the glass.

S: Nice piney hops on this one. The citrus notes aren't as strong, but I get a little grapefruit. You also get t malt on the back with a little bit of caramel.

T: Lots of hop flavor, rips at my tongue. Piney and citrus gives way to caramel malt and a light toasted flavor.

M/D: Medium to full bodied with nice carbonation. Bitter/dry finish. Overall a nice DIPA, lower on the abv scale makes it really easy drinking.

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Photo of eat
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally found this one at Volo; this is the last bottle I needed to acquire to finish off the current BA Canadian Top 25. It's listed here incorrectly: this is an Imperial Pale Ale (as stated on the label) and not an Imperial IPA. I had been confused due to the listing.

Wicked colour: a hazy/translucent ruby-copper. Foamy, thick finger of cream-white head and sticky lacing. This beer looks great.

The nose consists mainly of tropical fruit. Guava, papaya and pineapple with a solid backing of sweet malt. Similar in character to a real American West Coast IIPA but not as powerful. It could use more presence.

An unbelievable amount of flavour for 7% ABV. It has the flavour of a full IIPA even though by ABV it's closer to an IPA (which can regularly weigh-in at 6-6.5%...it's hard to think of 7% as a "double"). I could see how naming this an Imperial Pale Ale would make sense; it seems to be in between a IIPA and an IPA. Tons of grapefruit rind, caramel malt, earthy and grainy with a hint of pine. The tropical fruit from the nose doesn't really show up in the taste as I was expecting. I really liked that hop character and wish I could taste it here, maybe it's more obvious when super fresh. This is one of those hoppy beers which is purposefully unbalanced; significantly higher in hops than malt. Though it doesn't overdo it: there is enough malt to serve as a solid base. No noticeable alcohol.

Decent feel, though it could be a bit more syrupy for my taste. The lightly-foamy carbonation does trick you into thinking the body is a little bigger than it is. Not bad.

I'm surprised...I thought this beer was most likely a little overrated but it isn't at all. At 7%, this could even conceivably be sessionable (though it's a little bitter to be sessionable for myself). I don't think I've ever tried an Imperial Pale Ale...very nice!

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Photo of evlu1441
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a nice looking beer. A finger of fluffy tan head sits on top of a pale, hazy amber brew.

The aroma is mainly fresh hops, with a hint of black pepper. There is a nice caramel malty background too.

The flavour is . The hop aroma is more restrained compared to some west coast IIPAs, though it is still quite intense. The hoppyness if balanced by a nice and slightly sweet malty backbone.

Overall, not the most exciting IIPA I've had, but a very solid example of the style.

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Photo of ritzkiss
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle courtesy of BBrianBoogie - thanks for the hook-up!

Pours a cloudy burnt orange with a finger of silky off white head that maintains a cover throughout and leaves spots of lacing down the glass. Love the unfiltered look, enticing.

Nose is resiny, spicy, hint of lemon and oranges hops. A hint of caramel sweetness hiding behind there.

Taste is refreshingly bitter. English style hops gather in force and pummel the tongue with a bitter burst. Notes of pine resin, Pinesol, lemons - mixed with a solid background of pale malts and a caramel sweetness. Hops dominate the entry and finish but the malts hold their ground in between. Silky mouthfeel.

Definitely one of Canada's most hopped brews though it doesn't have the bright citrus and floral notes that are characteristic of the more hopped, West-Coast American brews. That said, it's quite refreshing and satisfying. Would be glad to drink a couple of these.

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Photo of bryehn
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy marmalade-like orange colour with hints of copper and a fair amount of suspended sediment. The head is light beige in colour and very frothy. It has good retention and leave a healthy amount of lace behind as it settles.

The aroma has a malt-forward caramel character balanced by a mild grapefruit-like citrus tone. I also get a ripened cherry note and one of freshly cut grains.

The taste finds a nice balance between sweet caramel and bitter grapefruit or orange peel citrus. A dark chocolate flavour pokes through as it passes the tongue and the bitterness really kicks in during the finish.

The beer is full-bodied with a nice pop on the tongue despite a rather low carbonation. The long-lasting collar and sediment create a creamy sensation as it goes down. The aftertaste is dry and bitter with a lingering citrus character and a subtle strawberry or cherry fruitiness.

If I were to strictly review Garrison Imperial IPA as a Double/Imperial IPA, my opinion would be far less favourable because of its relatively low ABV and light character. It's more in line with "single" offerings like Southern Tier IPA or Red Racer IPA. That said, this is an excellent and thoroughly enjoyable beer that is one of the best Canadian-brewed IPAs and one that I snap up any time I see it.

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Photo of andrenaline
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy golden orange, finger of head with solid retention and fantastic lacing.

S - Sweet caramel and lemon citrus hops off the top, with a touch of earthiness, followed by some pine and cedar notes.

T - The caramel hits you off the top, but is quickly overtaken by some very bitter citrus hops. Probably one of the bitterest IIPA's I've had to date for sure, though the malt does attempt to balance it out.

M - No complaints here. Even though it came across bitter, it did not finish overly dry, and was smooth going down.

O - Overall a very tasty, though bitter, IIPA. A hop heads delight and definitely something unique in the realm of DIPA's. Highly recommended and a quality Canadian take on the style.

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Photo of kjyost
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks BBrianBoogie! Bottled on Nov 20/09. Poured into a Tulip.

An amazing looking beer. This is not the biggest IPA by ABV but man does it look good. A rich red body that is a little cloudy. Pours a perfect head that slowly drops itself as it leaves thick and perfect lacing. Woowzers! This beer has me right off the hop.

The aroma continues in the same vein. Floral and hoppy, Amarillo or a C hop? A bit of earthy hop underneath it too. The malt is understated, but I think that is only because I am getting the hops kicking me in the nose... Everything an IIPA should be. I was worried that the nose would be off as the bottle was older. Thanks heavens not!

The taste of the beer is nice, but it is not nearly as overwhelming as my two previous senses too it to be. The primary hop flavour is earthy and a bit dank. Not my favorite. It is well balanced though as the bitterness is there, but not overwhelming nor lingering forever upon the palate. The malt body is sweet and at times tastes bready / like crackers. This hits you until the bitterness rolls in and balances it out. Personally I would have preferred a more floral hop in the body. Still good.

Mouthfeel is a unbalanced. Plays well in the mouth in terms of bitterness, but the carbonation at times seemed a bit too biting. Not normally, but in a few mouthfuls.

A good and drinkable IIPA, that had me from the pour. Well done Garrison!

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Photo of peensteen
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle from mmurphy525

Hazy deep amber colour, 2 fingers of white head, sticky and dense, lots of lace left behind. Smell is very hoppy, soft citrus, grapefruit, pine is present as well but more so in the background wrapped up with a soft malty backbone. Taste is bursting with hops, pine is at the forefront while citrus takes the background role, malty, very well balanced, grapefruit and tangerine present as well. Full body, good weight, fairly oily, medium carbonation. Very solid brew, have had this a few times before but never as fresh as this bottle, more of a big IPA than a IIPA but its still really good.

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Photo of allergictomacros
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper with a big billowy head. Careful pouring this one - the head will build for a good long time! Nose is bright, floral and citrusy with a touch of sawdust and fruit. A little on the boozy side and leans towards bitterness rather than hop flavour. Could have more balancing sweetness. Good body and drinkability. Tasty enough but doesn't really pop.

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Imperial IPA from Garrison Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 121 ratings.