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White Hawk Original IPA - Mendocino Brewing Company

White Hawk Original IPAWhite Hawk Original IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

799 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 799
Reviews: 521
rAvg: 3.35
pDev: 15.52%

Brewed by:
Mendocino Brewing Company visit their website
United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-19-2002)
View: Beers (28) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 799 | Reviews: 521 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Boilermaker88


4.18/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presented in a 12oz brown bottle with a head and chest picture of an albino hawk on the label. Poured a hazy orange color with lots of carbonation and a sturdy, foamy white head. Head had some of the best retention I've seen; it never faded away and left nice sheet lacing.
Aroma was a pleasant blend of citrus and mild pine scents over a modest malt base.
Taste was plenty hoppy but not overpowering. Started with a solidly malty flavor which quickly gave way to a bit of grapefruit and pine flavors. Finished with a nice clean hoppy bite.
Feel was medium-bodied, smooth and clean.
A really enjoyable example of the style. Not an über-IPA with enough hops to snap your tongue off its rollers but rather a well balanced, tasty offering. Another solid beer from Mendocino Brewing.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2003 17:20:57 | More by Boilermaker88
Photo of Globetrotter


3.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was hand delivered to me in Moscow by a colleague from Washington DC, a special treat for a hophead trapped in the land of pale lagers. Comes in a standard brown 12oz. bottle with a pretty cool label featuring the white hawk (of course). No freshness info or list of ingredients.

Pours a dark clear gold with some bubbles under an off-white two-fingered head with good body but not much retention. Enough lingers, however, to deposit nice lacework on the glass. The nose is fairly mild for the style, but features flowery hoppiness. The mouth is a bit too carbonated and slightly heavier than medium. The taste is very nice, starting with some malts but quickly jumping to hoppy bitterness with a hint of grass and citrus. The bitterness gets stronger in the finish, leaving a mildly bitter aftertaste with hints of flowers. A nice effort.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2003 19:18:28 | More by Globetrotter
Photo of Gueuzedude


4.13/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pleasing copper color with some gold notes to it. Pours with a quickly disappearing head. Smells sharply hoppy, that has a slight floral and a bit of grassy notes to it. Very smooth tasting, finishes with a strong fruitiness that comes from a solid hop flavor, then one takes note of the solid bitterness. Very malty up front, which then succumbs to a great hop flavor and bitterness. A very well balanced beer. The hop definitely dominates this brew, as it should in an IPA, but there is a solid maltiness which brings this beer to another level.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2003 16:22:07 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of beerguy101


3.15/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Orange gold color, Medium foamy head. Big hop aroma. A medium bodied IPA. Hops, hops and more hops. Hoppy and then hoppy some more. Not a lot of malts. Hops dominate. A little grapefruity and hoppy. If you get the idea that this beer is hoppy, thank you. That all said it still tastes pretty good. Hoppy, but kind of smooth. Mouthfeel is full. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is bitter.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2003 02:20:19 | More by beerguy101
Photo of Jason


3.43/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Pale brassy golden colour, decent lacing with some stickage.

Smell: Big estery alcohol within the semi pungent hop aroma … not much for malt.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Pretty smooth and full bodied. Hop bitterness is there, pungent and piney with a prickly finish. Lots of warming alcoholic esters, hints of diacetyl and toasted grain. Citric tones influence the palate. Finish is much like the start, lots of hop flavour.

Notes: A typical American brewed IPA. Good drinking if you like lots of hops, a bit off balance IMO … the alcohol character gets in the way too much.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2003 23:03:40 | More by Jason
Photo of maxpower


3.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear golden-amber color, has a huge frothy white head that leaves a nice lacing, pine and citrus nose, average citrus flavors, some what thin with a sticky mouthfeel it is a bit unbalanced it is lacking something maybe a little bland, much better IPAs out there to drink, this is very average for the style.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2003 19:20:17 | More by maxpower
Photo of rabidawg


4.33/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Lemony, sunshine yellow with a creamy white head that disappeared quickly. Left minimal lacing.

Smell: Bright, citrusy hops. Definite sweet malt background, but the hops paint the picture. Nice spiciness, with peppery, wit-reminiscent notes. Yeast is apparent.

Taste: More spicy, grapefruit hops. Surprisingly refreshing sweetness, with a lingering cascade flavor, but not as bitter and dry as most. Very tasty, and maybe one of the most drinkable IPAs I've had.

A typical AIPA? No. Enjoyable nonetheless? Definitely. Crisp and refreshing, and a perfect summer beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2003 03:16:11 | More by rabidawg
Photo of marburg


3.4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm pleased to see that my boss has taken to buying a variety of good brews for her parties, and this beer is one that I just sampled at one of those parties. Amberish appearance, slightly thin head. The aroma is surprisingly lacking in the hop department with very little of that citrus hop aroma that some of my favorite IPAs put forth so well. Some nice bitterness at the close. Pretty ideal for a hot day and not a bad IPA to share with friends.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2003 01:57:58 | More by marburg
Photo of OldFrothingSlosh


3.65/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz. amber bottle with the "how did an IPA come about" blurb on the neck label.

Appearance: Poured a clear and bright orange. Appearance gets an extra 1/2 point for the impressive head that formed, persisted, and laced quite nicely.

Smell: Snappy citrus aromas. Little bits of malty sweetness creep out.

Taste: Good dose of acidic, grapefruit flavor. Malt backbone is thin but the sweetness is noted. Bitterness is also quite evident. Gets more intense at the end, with an oily resin on the lips and lingering bitterness on the palate. The ABV remains hidden throughout.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. A nice level of smoothness before the btterness kicks in at the end.

Drinkability: Nothing too major with this one. Hoppy and bitter, but at a tame level. Just your average, middle-of-the-road IPA.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2003 00:40:30 | More by OldFrothingSlosh
Photo of WVbeergeek


2.83/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appears hazy copper amber tone with a nice billowing off white cream toned head, and the lacing seems to form nice trickled annular rings around the pint. Aroma is packed with some floral citrusy toned hops not any rushing malt tones to really note just some hops there that's about it overall nice and unoffensive. Taste however the hops are present as well just leaving my tongue with an upleasant oily bitter sensation just not balanced there is some malt sweetness just it lies in the background while the flavor comes off as being a little harsh. Mouthfeel is light for an IPA and carbonation is decent just nothing too impressive going on to note here. Drinkability gets hurt due to the unbalanced flavor profile and not much of anything spectacular going on just mediocre doesn't keep me coming back.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2003 12:00:22 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of RenoZymurgist


3.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew is bottle conditioned and i think they may have over carbonated it due to the fact that it was brewed at low elevation and then shipped up here to reno at 5000 ft. Amber golden color with a thin white head and very small particles that are either hops or yeast i am not sure but it dosent leave this brew cloudy at all. Aroma is light and floral. The carbonation gives the hop flavors more bite and i kind of like it. Citrussy with a little grapefruit leads me to belive that there is centennial and maybe a tiny bit of cascade in here. Finishes well with pleasant hoppiness and a nice warmth due to alcohol.
An average I.P.A. though the higher alcohol level makes this a brew i would buy again, especially if it is on sale.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2003 13:46:21 | More by RenoZymurgist
Photo of BeerResearcher


3.95/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dull gold in color with a 2" lasting head and some trailing lace. Mostly a floral hop aroma with a touch of sweet malt. Medium bodied malt with a hint of toastiness. Abundantly hopped with grapefruity and spicy bitterness. Slight caramel sweetness sneaks in as the glass warms. Contract brewed in Saratoga, NY.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2003 20:03:29 | More by BeerResearcher
Photo of longpondbeerman


3.78/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok, this is a new and unusual IPA. White Hawk is out of California, and this is the first brew of theirs I have tried. It's a worthy choice. It pours a light golden with a solid, almost pure white head that recedes into a fine, lacy residue. The smell is tart and hoppy, like most American IPAles, and the taste, though potent, is not overbearing. There's not a great deal of balance, however, in this ale; that is to say, not much to offset the bitter. I rather like that, but it's not for everyone. A decent brew--give it a try.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2003 16:52:28 | More by longpondbeerman
Photo of goz


3.53/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pale golden pour, large white head, mostly diminishing to leave goad lacing. Aroma is floral, pine, citrus - pretty much all hops. Flavor has mild malts to start, then big hops take over in the middle to the end. Body is medium. Pretty much a run of the mill IPA, nothing spectacular about it.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2003 11:46:17 | More by goz
Photo of freed


3.78/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Its been a while since I've had a Mendocinio brew, and I'm on a mission to find the best IPAs, so they're on the list still. The label is kind of creepy, despite my like of birds. The pour was nice, a breif head that thinned but stayed for the beer.

Its a nice bronze color with a slight haziness. The aroma is not all that inviting, but the first sip confirms that it is an IPA. Its got a nice range of bitterness, and a very pleasant malt body. I'd dare say its crisp. Its a very filling beer, probably due to its body. I wish I had some food to see how it paired. It seems like a decent match for something spicy. If you can get over the label (its judging me!), its worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2003 19:38:50 | More by freed
Photo of hyuga

North Carolina

3.8/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A hazy pale orange, almost yellow brew. I had to pour this carefully, there was a lot of yeast sediment in the bottle. The white head on top disappears almost completely eventually, so retention isn't great. The aroma is subtle, but with a good dose of hops, giving it a spicy, piney character. Malt in the nose is sweet and grainy. The taste is much more impressive, again, very spicy hops and well-aimed bitterness all around. Mostly rind-like and grapefruit-like in specific character. Malt is grainy, biscuity, and very sweet. In the front, it's very hoppy, while the back is definitely much more malty than hoppy. Very interesting. It goes a bit more hoppy once again in the finish. It's mostly English, but there's some American "west coast" character in there as well, from the hopping. They could have done better, but it's a pretty good beer, definitely enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2003 23:41:51 | More by hyuga
Photo of elmocoso


3.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a golden straw-like color with not much a head, but a decent ring and faint covor of lace.

a very citrusy nose that is nice and crisp. There is also a noticable malt smell. Pretty well balanced smell to this one.

taste is decent. quite a bite of bitterness on the back of the tounge but i've tasted better.

mouthfeel is also decent. quite a bit of sting from the carbonation.

overall a decent beverage, but i doubt i would seek it out in the market.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2003 19:20:34 | More by elmocoso
Photo of Gusler


3.5/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a stuporous golden amber color, the head massive and frothy in texture, the lace a thin sheet to cover the glass. Malt dominated nose with a light floral undertone, crisp and fresh with a lightly sweet start, the top medium in feel, the finish moderate on the carbonation and the hops persistent in their spicy bite, dry and long lasting aftertaste. I would classify it as a middle of the road IPA, not a “Big Daddy”, but not a “Weenie Light” beer either, just plain old average.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2002 15:39:35 | More by Gusler
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


3.1/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours with a huge head, frothy and rocky and it stays that while for quite some time. Golden color - with exceptional clarity. Plenty of hops in the nose, and this travels through to the mouthfeel. High alcohol punch at first that makes way for a hoppy bitterness that does linger, but not as long as I would expect. Good hoppiness but lacks the refinement of a good English IPA for me, neverthless a reasonable beer, an average example of a well hopped beer.
I know there is a difference between English and American IPA's, and I think after 12 months in the USA I now know what it is - but, I am not convinced this beer does, it tries to be both in my humble opinion.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2002 14:09:34 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of sinistersteve


3.9/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Not a horribly bad IPA, but surely not one of the best. A strong hop flavor to please most hop heads. The aroma isn't as strong as most IPA's are, although the aroma seems to belong to a strong ale and not so much for an IPA. Very clean looking in the glass and there wasn't much of a head once it was poured into my glass and there was, diminished rather quickly. All in all, I wouldn't make a special trip to get this beer specificly, but it would be a nice addition if you're getting several different styles of beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2002 17:16:17 | More by sinistersteve
Photo of Mark


3.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

English style ale is my favorite but this brew is just O.K. Color was very pale and lager like. Hoppy finish clashes with a noticible alcoholic presence. Decent lace and mouthfeel, packs a punch at 7.0 abv. Not bad but not great.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2002 19:53:40 | More by Mark
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White Hawk Original IPA from Mendocino Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 799 ratings.