Imperial Red Ale - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial Red AleImperial Red Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

41 Reviews
THE BROS
87
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 41
Hads: 128
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 7.39%
Wants: 3
Gots: 10 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
Utah, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  7.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Wasatch on 08-08-2010

A boldly flavored double red ale. Combining caramel malt for sweetness mixed with nice alcohol and plenty of dry and late kettle hop aromas from three killer America strains create a beer that is tough to compare.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 41 | Hads: 128
Photo of RonfromJersey
2.34/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Body is red with brownish overtones. Four fingers of off-white rocky foam. Nice stretchy lacing.

Aroma requires a really deep sniff. Mostly a sweet alcoholic pixie stick.

Extremely sweet malt overpowers the tongue. Big taste of alcohol. Barely blunted by earthy hops at the swallow, with seem to be mainly cutting the sweet and the fire instead of making their own statement.

Many times we talk about how well hidden alcohol is in a beer. In this case, at least taste wise, it seems like there is even more booze than the posted abv.

This not what I'm looking for in an imperial red. Turn up the hops to 11 while bumping up the booze next time. (648 characters)

Photo of Gavage
3.25/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: pours a hazy dark red almost brown color with a 1" head that falls to some large bubbles clinging to the sides of the glass.

Smell: loads of caramel and fruit sweetness rise from the glass.

Taste: nice malty profile here. Caramel, dark fruits, some pine, a bit of grapefruit, and a moderate bitterness. Overall this seemed a bit unbalanced to me as the sweetness and bitterness seemed to battle each other rather that work together.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Light crispness to start, smooth and velvety at the finish.

Overall: slow quaffing beer that misses the mark for me. A very hoppy red ale that doesn't marry the sweetness and bitterness in a balanced fashion. (691 characters)

Photo of tobelerone
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer pours a cloudy reddish brown; small head with impressively thick lacing that clings to the side of the glass for the duration. Aroma is malty with traces of juicy citrus hops; faintly alcoholic.

Very nice tasting beer...expected a Nugget Nectar knock-off but this is something different. Sweet and malty, but offset by a subdued hoppy tang. Booze is there but it's restrained. The mouthfeel really shines on this beer; very creamy but not too sticky. Carbonation is on the medium to low side. Drinkability is somewhat compromised by the high ABV but overall this is really a nice beer and a somewhat pleasant surprise.

Best features: great lacing and mouthfeel! (668 characters)

Photo of oberon
4.42/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

8.1%ABV. per bottle label.

Poured into a stange a somewhat murky deep amber with a tight two finger sticky off white head.The aromas are just fantastic,first the "green" hops smack ya and then big fruity esters, telling you this is a ballsy big red even before trying it.There is some serious hop resin going on here,herbal and citric,the hops really jump out on the palate,a sweetish brown sugar malt base comes into play in the finish after the tirade of hops,even some earthy tones develop as I drink more.This is exactly the type of American style amber I like,hopped to the hilt but still with a hefty malt presence,I like it more than most.Gotta love the hop burps this beer gives off. (692 characters)

Photo of jzeilinger
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep dark cherry color with a very large, rocky, cream colored head with moderate carbonation. The head clings to the sides to the glass.

S - Mild citris in the nose with a moderate dose of piney goodness, toasted caramel malt, and somewhat earthy and mildly spicey.

T - Not as malty as what I expected from a red ale. Toasted caramel nips the tongue up front followed by a hoppy mixture of pine and citrus followed by a dose of alcohol effervescence which then gives way to a warming sensation as it glides down the throat. Buried deep down on the palette is a mild touch of chocolate and toasted toffee. Between the hops and the malt, not one dominates over the other, it's a nice balance. There's also a touch of spicy character to the finish.

M - Somewhat chewy, heavy medium body, quite smooth on the tongue.

O - I'm not one to enjoy the boozy effervesence of a beer but for some strange reason, it really lends an extra dimension to the character that makes it interesting and enjoyable. I also have to say I really don't like red ales because of their big malty character but Epic used the right amount of hops to bring the toasted malt character back into check. Nicely done. (1,200 characters)

Photo of claspada
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy deep ruby red color with a large, thick, creamy tan colored head leaving real nice lacing on the glass.

Aromas begin with caramel malts up front, a little sticky and somewhat sweet. There is a lot of oily hops, somewhat piney resign, and a touch of grapefruit. As it warms, I get some more darker roasted malts which I didn't expect.

The taste is really full flavored, lots of sticky sweet malts with notes of caramel and lightly toasted toffee. The hops transition pretty smoothly, resinous pine and hints of grapefruit. There is a nice subtle lingering bitterness but the subtle background roasted malts help to balance out.

The mouthfeel is quite thick and heavy for the style; almost drinks like an American Strong Ale or an American Barleywine. Plenty of carbonation and hop oil which helps this to finish pleasantly dry and crisp in the finish.

Overall I am pleasantly pleased with this beer, especially because it is so fairly priced at $7 for a 22oz. It is not mind blowing or revolutionary, but really solid in the taste. Lots of dark malt flavors surprisingly for the style. Much more so than your typical American Red Ale. I would classify this as an American Strong Ale if it was up to me; anyway. Good, fairly priced and tasty, what else do you need. (1,290 characters)

Photo of corby112
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Release #7

Pours an opaque, deep dark ruby color with mahogany edges and a 2.5 finger beige head that slowly fades into a lasting ring. Sporadic chunks of lace left behind.

Dank, earthy aroma with lots of resinous, oily hops. Lots of soily pine needle character that is countered by some sweet chocolate and other dark malts. Hints of chocolate, toffee, biscuit and caramel as well as some dark fruit, especially dark cherry. Decent balance of malt and hops without the malt profile overpowering things.

Chewy bodied and much fuller than expected for the style with a strong dry, bitter, earthy hop presence up front that lingers over the sweet malt backbone into a slightly dry finish. Some resinous floral/pine needle flavor that is countered by a very strong malt backbone with tons of chocolate and subtle roasted malt. Hints of toffee and biscuit as well as some tart dark cherries. The sweetness is a nice balance to the bitterness from the hops. The malts are a bit prominent for my liking but this beer is still well balanced and pretty quaffable considering the ABV. (1,078 characters)

Photo of stimulus
4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Release #7. 7.8% ABV.
Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep amber/red with a one finger tan head.
S: Hoppy with some caramel malt in the background.
T: Floral hops give way to sweet caramel and toffee malts. There is no alcohol bite and very low bitterness; the beer's focus is on the hop profile.
M: Smooth, medium bodied, and well carbonated.
O: For a style that isn't really well defined, I'll judge this based on the fact that it is listed as an Amber/Red Ale, and it is a slightly stronger, hoppier version of a Red Ale. This is nothing at all like Nugget Nectar, but it doesn't try to be; instead of citrus, floral and sugary flavors fill this beer. (680 characters)

Photo of Beaver13
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, release #6 - 7.9% ABV. Pours a hazy amber reddish brown with a small off white head that diminishes to a thin film that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is sweet caramel malts and reisny piney hops.

The flavor is sweet toasted caramel malts with some dark fruit and a good amount of piney resiny hops. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation.

Overall, a nice big hoppy red. It's more toasty than expected. (430 characters)

Photo of emmasdad
3.46/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this one on tap at Oskar Blues Liquids and Solids yesterday. Not all that impressive. Poured a dark honey brown color with a little white head. Aromas of caramel, sweet malt and a barely present hit or earthy hops. On the palate, this one was medium bodied, with flavors of sweet malt and caramel. (301 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-pours a slightly hazy deep ruby red color with a thick and creamy tan colored head leaving a light lacing on the glass.

S-notes of caramel malts up front, a little sticky and somewhat sweet, lots of oily hops, somewhat piney resign, and a touch of grapefruit. hints of booze in the back.

T-full flavored, lots of sticky sweet malts with notes of caramel and lightly toasted toffee. the hops transition pretty smoothly, resignous pine and hints of grapefruit. light herbal hop presence, faint bitterness in the finish and again a note of bourbon.

M-very syrupy and soft texture, a little thin in the back with a light carbonation.

D-this is a fairly strong beer with notes of booze and a nice balance of malt and hop. assertive hop presence and sweet malt backbone, pretty good stuff. (789 characters)

Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.6/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into an Odell 90 Schilling imperial pint glass. Release #3, 7.4%. Around $7.

A: Fairly cloudy, red/brown in color with a light tan head about three fingers worth or so. Huge gobs of lacing as the head recedes. Decent retention. Pretty nice looking beer.

S: Pretty big pine note in the nose at first that leads into some more resinous hop notes. Really a lot of pine in the nose, a few malty smells but they're dominated by a strong hoppy nose.

T: Interesting, lots of hops and a huge bitterness at the end and a decent amount of malt, some caramel and a little bit of burnt/roasted malts at the end. Very resinous in the hop profile and a ton of pine. Unfortunately, I get some very odd esters from the yeast at the finish, almost like it fermented a little bit on the warm side maybe a touch cidery. Tastes a lot like my imperial red ale that I made that fermented a little warm. Decent.

M: Medium body, perfect carbonation, and just a bit of boozy warmth on the finish. A little sticky on the lips. Not bad.

D: Overall pretty easy to drink, leans a little towards the hoppy end of the spectrum, but that's okay and I like that in the style. Not a bad beer, but could use a little work to push it to the next level. (1,238 characters)

Photo of Douglas88
4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle picked up at the brewery. Pours a pretty picture; very dark red mahogany hues with a large tan head. The aroma is huge wet hops, pine and lighter citrus- like a massive IIPA. A really nice flavor; creamy, strong caramel, dry malts, light sweet fruit, lots of pine and citrus hops balance it out. A fine American Strong Ale. Smooth and very drinkable with a very large hoppy bite. (395 characters)

Photo of bishopgary
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into pint glass from 22oz bottle.

A: Dark amber, with brownish orange tones. Medium amount of head, with some lacing that stays around for a bit. Slightly less than clear, in an intriguing way. If you had not read the label you may wonder what you were about to drink. Nice

S: You can really smell the caramel malt, with warm bread aromas. Noticeable but not strong hop aroma.

T: Tastes like it smells. Somewhat sweet up front, but balanced nicely by the slight hoppiness. The malt flavor is what you should expect from an amber.

M: Slightly more body than most ambers, but still nice. Dry finish that runs counter to the sweetness upfront.

D: Very drinkable, one of the more memorable amber/reds have had in while. (729 characters)

Photo of kagent777
4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber. Release #2 (7.8 % ABV) of this particular beer from Epic was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Wow, this is one pretty lady! She had a huge, long lasting thick head, that let some gorgeous lacing. The color was almost brown with flashes of amber and red thrown in for accent.

Smell: I can smell the bitterness of some hop perfume as well as some nice caramel malt. Since this one is 7.8 ABV, I can also smell a little of the alcohol.

Taste: Matches the smell. First, you have the malty sweetness. Once it fades, the various hops kick in and linger for a bit longer. I wish I could put more words to this, it is simply really tasty. Very balanced.

Mouthfeel: This is a big beer. I suspect the final gravity is quite high. Has a heavy feeling on the palate, but not overpowering. The carbonation and alcohol give it a lift.

Drinkability: This is probably not a beer for beginners. It is very good. Unfortunately, this one is a little pricey. So when I have extra money and the brewery is stocking it I will be sure to grab another. I wonder what this would taste like when aged a little? A very good offering from Epic. (1,140 characters)

Photo of Wasatch
2/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22oz. Bomber
Exponential Series
1800 Bottles Produced
Release #2
$6.89 ea.

Pours a reddish/amber color, carbonation, one-finger head, with some sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some hop notes, and caramel. The taste is sweet, malty, hop note, bitter, caramel. Medium body, the finish is dry and bitter. Would not buy this again. (351 characters)

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Imperial Red Ale from Epic Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.