Serum - DuClaw Brewing Company

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SerumSerum

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BA SCORE
81
good

469 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 469
Reviews: 104
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 12.08%
Wants: 10
Gots: 92 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
DuClaw Brewing Company visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Hefe on 02-12-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 469 | Reviews: 104
Reviews by Ieatlambfries:
More User Reviews:
Photo of clayrock81
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Poured a reddish brown body with one finger head and a bit of lace patches.
Aroma is citric hoppy with hints of grape and a little bit of fruit and caramel sweetness.
Smooth and light bodied for a DIPA, ABV well-hidden, retains oily, citric hops and touches of grape and caramel sweetness.
Fuller, bready, dry finish and overall not the best DIPA, a simplistic version if you will, but not as bad as some reviews on here led me to believe.

Photo of HopticalDeployment
2.95/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

...marketing verbage is a dangerous dance for breweries...

After seeing 9% and the audacious descriptors, I was hoping for more body. It has a startling light body considering the ingredients and technique it takes to make a DIPA.

Upfront smells and tastes: Grapefruit rind, not zest. Esther in the nose. There is a bitterness that distinguished the difference between grapefruit rind and not zest. Oddly unique grapefruit pith character (the white part of a grapefruit peel). Very faint creme brulee burnt sugar in the finish. Finishes with that and more pith.

Disappointing that there was not more malt, grain or biscuit notes found in most DIPAs or IIPAs. The finish hung on my epiglotis in an unpleasant way, like a fart in church.


Overall? Good. For $9.99 @ total wine for a sixer.... I'd buy more. Not a party center, just something to get started with.

Photo of Billolick
3.85/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, w/o freshness dating info

Pour is darker amber, near clear, tan head that stays a while then leaves a minor tiny bubble film and minor fine lace.

Resin hop nose of moderate interest

Resinous hops notes dominate here. In a world of seemingly hundreds of DIPA, this one does not really stand out as anything awesome. But its enjoyable, hoppy and well crafted with enough of a malt undercoating to make it quite drinkable.

Went well with some 2 year aged cheddar.

Worth a try if you find this available in your local area

Photo of tigg924
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

I really like this beer. However, if I were drinking it blindly I would never guess American Imperial IPA. One of the more malty IPAs that I have had. While I would not consider this to be sweet, it certainly does not reach the levels of bitterness that are common with the style. Taste is caramel, toffee, light citrus, and candied fruits. The bitterness comes with some dryness at the end. A beer I will likely revisit, but probably not one I would reach for if I want what I typically associate with the style.

Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.12/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just filled this growler today while meeting some fantasy football buds. Light amber color. Pours with a thin head. Piney hops in smell. Tastes hoppy but not out of balance. Smooth mouthfeel & this is very drinkable. I am not a huge fan of DuClaw's beers but this is a good DIPA.

Cheers.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a copper amber color with an off white head, leaves speckled lacing around my glass. Aroma has nearly burn grapefruit peel, big alcoholic malt layers too. Look it feels like a DIPA double fruit and bitterness, the beer is resinous and all around a let down compared to other DIPAs. The beer is medium to full bodied finishes smooth throughout my glass. Overall I'm a fan only one of the two kind bring about.

Photo of DCHritz
4.46/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Strong and hoppy. Very good on this Friday afternoon

Photo of ITK4ever
3.82/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I love Venom and I was surprised to see Serum on-tap. I always wanted to try it, but I always seemed to miss the release. This a fine DIPA. Poured a copper color with a light tan head that didn't last long. One other reviewer mentioned that it wasn't cold enough...which was true. I would have liked it to be just a tad colder and let it warm on it's own. Regardless, this beer is definitely an IPA. Hoppy up front on the nose and into the gullet. But it doesn't seem to be Cascade, or Warrior....I can't put my finger on it. I'll tell you what though, this stuff packs a wallop!!!! At 9% I had two of these and was feeling absolutely no pain....add those two to the 3 Venoms and 2 Sawtooths I had. Good stuff from what I remember. I can't wait to go back and try it again.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours that super-creamy kind of head you want to see on a Double IPA. Hazy bronze/copper color. Par for the course, in a good way.

Relatively weak aroma, for the style. Something mildly medicinal creeps in too (gotta be the 9% ABV). And, in fact, there's more caramel sweetness than pine/citrus here, indicating that the generous malt presence noted on the label is in effect...although I wonder where the hops are. The pour indicates a fairly vibrant beer, but without bottle dating, there's no way to know whether the hops have faded due to this bottle hanging around the store shelf too long. I did pull it out of a cooler, so...on to the taste.

There's a raw, unrefined character to the taste of Serum, which is kind of nice. An enjoyable tropical and citrus fruit melange shows the hops doing their thing, while the malt is intensely caramel-ish without ever being too sweet. Spearmint emerges with some warming. A juicy, fruity character dominates, and there's also a pungent, resin-y quality to the beer, especially in the finish. 9% alcohol provides only the mildest bit of warmth.

There's a stickiness trying to happen here, but never gets there, and the body lacks the creamy roundness you want in a beer like this...probably a tad too much carbonation too. The thinner body is never watery, but ultimately it just escapes feeling lackluster.

I was in the mood for a really great double IPA, but new ones in that category are proving elusive. Maybe that bar has been set too high. In any case, I like this, and it performs well enough to satisfy. Won't be a problem to finish the bottle.

Photo of sjones5045
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Home 5/5/15

Pours golden tan with. Nice head. Mother smell is hoppy and citrus notes coming through. Not a bad taste, but kind of acidic. The booze comes through on this in the aftertaste but not a bad beer. Certainly better than the ratins suggest.

Photo of Kegatron
3.2/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a clear copper, with a finger of creamy off-white head. This retains with some thick foamy ringing that leaves back a moderately robust cascade of sticky spotty lacing. The aroma smells a bit leafy, with notes of spice, pine, and a sticky mix of caramel, ripe fruit, and a toasted graininess. The citric aspect of this has a touch of fresh brightness to it that helps carry things here for the most part.

The taste is bitter grapefruit that is surrounded by ripe herbal and tropical flavors before running into a backbone of stiff toasted grains and tangier caramel sweetness. Hops return in a dry finish that sticks to the tongue with a spicy and resinous feel. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied with a lively carbonation on the edges and then more of a sharp chewiness that lies on the tongue. This does have some heat to it, which not only brings out the aggressiveness of the hops but also turns this into more of a sipper than I would have liked.

I’ve had this one and off now for like 6-7 years and while this bottled version is pretty close to what I’ve had on draft before, it’s still just not a DIPA that I can really get into. Just too much sweetness and alcohol in spots with some of the hop character here as well getting to be a bit too harsh at times and an overall drinkability that is hampered by its high ABV. I wish I liked this one more.

Photo of alleykatking
3.35/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at DuClaw...

A- Pours a amberish orange body. Half finger off white head shows medium retention. Spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Caramel malts in the front of the aroma. Citrus hops come in next with the middle of the aroma being mostly bready smelling. Ending of the nose is a lot of piney hops with hints of caramel malts. For a DIPA this has a lighter hop aroma.

T- Caramel malts in the front of the beer mix with a bitter piney aroma. This dies down to a light bready middle. Caramel malts do come back in the ending with citrus hops showing themselves in light amounts toward the end. Piney hops come through at the end with a medium warming alcohol finish.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is alright for the style. Flavor is a little watery for the style...or at least to what I am used too (Three Floyd's). Caramel malts and bitter hops are left on the palate. Aftertaste is mostly warming alcohol, caramel malts, and citrusy/piney hops. Medium drying on the palate from the alcohol. Flavors were a little too malty for the style I think. No real off flavors when I was drinking.

D- I wouldn't say DIPA for this beer. A nice drinking IPA maybe. A little watery for the style with a alcohol content that I should taste. ABV is high which limits the overall drinkability of the beer. A nice try for the style but a little blah.

Photo of tone77
2.68/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a light brown color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is malts, some hops, a touch of citrus. Taste is very unusual, and not so godd, bitter, a medicinal property to it, kind of like nyquil, the malts and hops not mixing very well. Feels light in the mouth and overall I was not very impressed with this beer.

Photo of donquixote
2.79/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 3

Water Ph seems high with a residual sweetness that lingers. Hop balance seems off but there is no alcohol burn on this 9%er.

Photo of AndreRus
2.59/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Strong and very hoppy. However kinda has a weird after taste to it. It is not a bad doble IPA for the price you pay. But at the same time certainly not as good as some other doble/imperial IPAs.

Photo of beerthulhu
2.53/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Cadmium orange, light and lazy movement of effervesce. Butff colored head, patchy, dissipates almost immediately with minimal lacing.

S: Straw and dry toasted grain, very faint upport with an even more bare minimal, underpar hop profile of muted, undefinable content.

T: Some malt support, old lemony hops, stale grapefruit with a bit of metallic ting. Washed out toasted maltiness, some dry hop appeal but seems warming, like old lemon citrus hop juice, homogenized. Ok level of bitternes for a entry level ipa, just not for a 2x label.

M: Light end of medium body, oily stale citrus juice ends with a watery toasted malting. Warming, but very managable for its 9.0%abv and hardly gets in the way.

O: Overall old stale citrus, a big dissapointment, no bottling info so hard to verify age, but it tastes old and stale hop and malt wise. Boring flavor profile, with a lost of interest halfway through the consumption. Unimpressive and forced finish.

Photo of akorsak
3.13/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a pint of DuClaw's new seasonal release Serum. Serum is billed as a Double IPA. It is served in a yellow Pint Club glass and is chilled.

Appearance: The ale has a lighter orange color, not quite a vibrant as some of the better DIPAs, but nonetheless nice. There is a bit of head, but not a thick ring.

Smell: The ale has a nice hoppy aroma, but the hops strike me as more muted, european hops. The website confirms that chinook and nugget hops are used (as opposed to vibrant citrusy amarillo or simcoe).

Taste: The ale has a well-balanced flavor. The hops are not too bitter and stringent, instead they provide an almost earthy hop taste that could rival fuggles or goldings, but not quite.

Mouthfeel: The ale sits well on the palate, with the malt character providing just enough of a counterbalance to the hops.

Drinkability: Had two with dinner and I may grab a growler's worth for the holiday weekend.

Photo of philbe311
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Slightly more than a fingers worth of rich creamy light tan colored head with a good bit of big chunky bubbles mixed in... Minimal retention gives way to full rich creamy lacing... The color is a moderately hazed, yet slightly bright orangish amber... A couple of stray sluggish carbonation bubbles can be seen rising deep within...

S - A lovely blend of hops and malts... Uber sweet Florida oranges... Some piney notes... Some floral notes... A big strong caramel is at the forefront as well... Some bready notes... The only complaint is that this aroma is a bit timid, I wish it were more assertive...

T - Sweet oranges... Tropical fruits... Some piney hop notes... A strong malt base dominated by caramel with some fresh baked bread... A bit of candied sugars... The finish is ever so slightly medicinal...

M - Very dense... On the fulelr side of medium bodied... A bit sticky... Rich and sophisticated... Clean...

D - Wow, this one caught me by complete surprise... I would gladly drink again, recommend, and hope to grab some more bottles when I'm in DuClaw's distribution radius... A dark horse in the ever expanding field of DIPAs that deserve much higher praise and recognition...

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.41/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle: Poured alight amber color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of bitter earthy hops with dry caramel malt notes. Taste is also dominated by bitter hops notes with limited complexity and some lightly sweet malt backbone. Body is about average with good carbonation. I thought there was too much malt and limited hops presence with a lacks of complexity in the hops profile.

Photo of Beejay
3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Orange brown in the glass, practically muddy. With a light amount of head on top.

S: The smell is thick with sweet fruit aromas. Orange, tangerine, pineapple, and peach. A hint of brown sugar in the finish.

T: Sweet, but with an assertive bitterness. Tropical fruits, and citrus peel.

M: Medium in body with fairly high carbonation. A touch of carbonic bite in the finish, as well as some lingering hop bitterness.

O: Overall a decent brew, but I think it falls short of others in the category. I'm still enjoying sipping on it though.

Photo of Dodo2step
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

P- AOH

A- a fuzzy amber color with a half finger head that leaves a line lace around the inside of the pint.

S- phenols and grapefruit dominate. no malt presence that i can detect.

F- grapefruit but more of an alcohol taste. It over powers any other flavor.

M- dry and alcohol laden. warm in the throat.

O- a very alcohol laden ipa in the nose and flavor. it takes away from other notes in the beer. Could be better but a little better than average.

Photo of CraftBeerTastic
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ba Review #232
Served On: 11/02/2012
Glassware: Duvel Glass
Labeled ABV: 9.0%
Date/ Code: -

This was a 12oz. bottle from a case I bought at Self Serve Beverage in York, PA. Was $39.99.

Look: The brew had a super clear dark honey color. Head was a 1-finger beige layer of frothy foam that eventually became a patchy film of random sized bubbles. Carbonation bubbles were at a respectable level. with lacing definitely forming on the glass.

Smell: Strong pine aroma mixed with some grassy notes and a sweet malt in the background.

Taste: First up was an astringent pine that quickly gave way to some mango and a syrupy malt sweetness in the middle. The finish had some bitterness but was rather clean for such a big beer. Some residual mango seemed to hang on. The sweet malts returned into the aftertaste. A very balanced beer given the ABV.

This brew certainly ranked up there with me. The high level of balance that was achieved is what sold me. To offer such an extreme beer while keeping it drinkable is exactly what I look for in a DIPA. I would almost compare this one to Hop'solutely from Allentown Brew Works, but with slightly more balance and less alcohol warmth.

Photo of fourstringer
3.77/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard pint glass. Moderately aggressive hand. The stamp on the neck is smudged, but I can make out a -"13" at the end.

A: Classic golden yellow-orange body with a slight haze. 2 fingers of sudsy, off-white head. Good retention. Moderate lacing.

S: Juicy, fruit-forward hop with elements of grape juice, tropical fruit. Light earth. Light brown sugar, caramel. Trace grapefruit, pine.

T: Moderately aggressive bitterness followed by a subdued maltiness. Transitions slowly back into a lingering bitterness and dry finish. Light alcohol presence for the 9% ABV. Occasional floral whiffs in the nose.

M: Smooth, moderate to light carbonation with a medium body. Drinks pretty well.

O: I had high expectations after enjoying a few preemptive sniffs, but in the end, it didn't quite live up to it's own olfactory hype. That being said, it was a good beer. I enjoyed it.

Prost!

Photo of smakawhat
3.24/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a Dogfish Head Ale glass.

A real nice creamy head, whipped up off white tan in color but only makes about two fingers and settles quickly to a one finger tall puck. Body is a crystal clear bronze dark amber, nearly hinting at hues of red and some very faint rising carbonation in the middle. Pretty solid looking.

Nose has a mushy sense of tropical hop angle, and fresh cut grass. Faint thick malts seem to be in the back, with a sense of boozy quality. Very large mushy fruit and heat.

Weird palate. First initial sip in the mid palate is full and syrupy thick with not much flavor, then swallow brings a quick lingering peppery hot and piney hop blast. Strangely for the thickness the beer doesn't really coat or fill the palate in fact all the flavor and sensation seem to barley get past my lips. Some noticeable heat that's about it.

Overall it is hop forward like a dipa but doesn't have much of a distinguishing hop palate or any body. THere's no fruit quality in taste to match the nose, no malt backbone, or even sweetness. Just a noticeable aftertaste of pine bitter. This is a weird one, it's sort of strangely empty so I'll pass on it.

Photo of Immortale25
3.79/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Haw River Farmhouse Ales teku glass. Bottleneck says Bottled 12/15/14.

A- Pours a medium amber color with a 3/4 inch off-white head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of sheer surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves large clots behind.

S- Sweet with a sharp hop fume as well as a noticeable alcohol presence.

T- The sweetness continues and the hops counteract with a pretty assertive bitterness. There's a certain honey-like aspect to the sweetness that makes me think more of a barleywine than a DIPA. A hint of citrus and the alcohol isn't as noticeable as in the nose.

M- Tangy and a bit oily with medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the lighter side.

O- Smooth enough for what it is: a DIPA that drinks more like a hoppy barleywine.

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Serum from DuClaw Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 469 ratings.