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Imperial IPA - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial IPAImperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

69 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 69
Hads: 308
Avg: 3.81
pDev: 23.88%
Wants: 12
Gots: 35 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
Utah, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BarrelO on 02-10-2011

This beer is the epitome of Epic’s IPAs. This hard hitting brew manages to pack a punch while still providing that fantastically complex IPA flavor. Slightly floral aromas hit the nose while resinous flavors dominate the body, finishing with the ideal palate cleansing bitterness.
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Reviews: 69 | Hads: 308
Photo of LiquidAmber
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a light to medium golden amber with a one finger white head with good retention and solid lacing. Aroma of citrus hops, grapefruit, mild sweet malt. Taste follows aroma, dominated by citrus and somewhat herbal hops supported by a nice caramel malt body. Flavor starts with hop bitterness which persists through the taste, finishing with residual citrus bittering hops. Medium bodied with a pleasant creaminess. Nicely integrated hops and malt; although the hops do not stand out in flavor intensity, the overall flavor progression is nice and inviting. I will watch for this again.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a light copper colour, thumb of fine bubbled head, solid retention and nice sporadic lacing.

S - Sweet citrus hop notes, solid caramel malt undertones, lemon sugar on the finish.

T - The citrus hops dominate, offering up a resiny flavour, hints of metallic lemon rind and a solid caramel malt on the finish. A sour citrus flavour lingers alongside a hint of ABV sweetness.

M - Medium bodied, a tad prickly and a touch of ABV heat on the finish.

O - Overall a solid DIPA and probably my favourite of the Epic brews that I picked up. The bitterness is certainly prominent and the ABV could be a bit more subdued, but all-in-all a solid DIPA worth seeking out.

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Photo of rustymoore
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Green Dragon in Portland OR

poured a creamy orange with minimal head but good lacing in a Chimay glass

Smell is full of hop notes as well as sweet fruits. Orange as well as banana

Taste is remarkably muted with hop flavor given the level of alcohol by volume. I was expecting an ethanol tinge but did not get that

Mouthfeel is smooth for the most part but is also acidic on the finish

Overall this isn't something you can drink all night but certainly give it a go if u get the chance

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Photo of beergoot
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Release #29/9.3% ABV per the label info. Experimental hop 1210 (Lemondrop) used at various stages per their web site.

Deep golden color with a foamy, sticky white head. Citrus and pine hop aromas intermingle with rich malt underpinning. Malt flavors quickly take a back seat to an intense hop bitterness and alcohol bite. Medium bodied and smooth mouthfeel; semi-dry.

Call this one a hop monster! The aroma is classic DIPA with the bitter taste fully asserting itself. Little subtlety with this one, so if you want an 'in your face' IPA, give this one a go...

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle to Duvel tulip.
Batch #14 - bottled Dec 5, 2011 --> so a fairly old bottle.

A - Light to medium orange with a big golden glow. Translucent. One finger of thick cream-coloured head with decent retention and some lacing.

S - Big citrus and pine aromas up front - grapefruit, tangerine, pine and some light grassy aromas. Some caramel malt sweetness in the background provides some balance. Smells fairly fresh.

T - A huge bitterness up front with grapefruit, orange zest and pine flavours. A fairly prominent malt backbone provides some sweetness and a touch of caramel. After a few sips the hop flavours started to completely fade away but the bitterness was still there in spades and the malt presence became much more noticeable. The finish was extremely bitter and dry.

M - Medium body and full of sticky hop resin. Light carbonation.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the ColLAboration beer fest at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles, CA.

First tapping in California!

Pours a hazy light orange with a foamy beige head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin streaks of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of citrus zest and herbal hops with a slight vegetal aroma. Taste is much the same down to the slight vegetal flavors. There is a mild bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good DIPA with lots of hop aromas and flavors.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this is a monster of a beer. has a hectic nose of diverse hop varieties, including some citrus elements as well as some earthy heavy meadowy type hops. there is also a considerable amount of caramel malts and english style malts happening in the nose, making it smell heavy but well reounded. flavor matches the nose about equally. huge hops, very bitter throughout. some sweeter fuller bodied malts trying to cut through, but the hops arent to be defeated here. this beer has a very heavy and contrasting mouthfeel which im not sure whether i like or not, but it is rather different and challenging to the drinker. overall a very well made imperial ipa, but another epic brew thats good to share. a whole one of these might have me shitfaced and full and tired all at once. not bad on a hangover either!

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.91/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Release #21

A: Pours a hazy to cloudy golden peach in color with some moderate amounts of visible carbonation and some apricot + peach highlights. The beer has a finger tall creamy beige head that slowly reduces to a medium thick patch of medium-large bubbles, a very thin film covering the majority of the remainder of the surface of the beer, and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: There are moderate aromas of citrus/grapefruit/orange rind and pine/resin hops with lighter notes of pale & toasted malts. Light hint of vanilla.

T: Upfront there are light to moderate flavors of pale & toasted malts with a light amounts of caramel sweetness. There are moderate to strong flavors of citrus/grapefruit/orange rind and pine/resin hops. Moderate to strong amounts of bitterness that linger for a long time and fade slowly.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Creamy upfront with resiny stickiness and moderate dryness in the finish.

O: This is a big beer, the alcohol is pretty well hidden but after enjoying a glass of this beer I can not see myself being able to drink much more of it without getting tipsy. The bitterness is pretty agressive and limits the drinkability.

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Photo of Mdog
3.91/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy gold, huge head.

Smell: Not too strong, citrus.

Taste: Lots of caramel backbone, reminds me a lot of barleywines like Bigfoot. Bitter citrus does show up but is nicely balanced.

Drinkability: Not too heavy for a big beer.

A new DIPA in Minnesota so I'll give it a try. Very balanced, gives you plenty of hops but also plenty of caramel sweetness. I like sweeter DIPAs so this hits the spot. Worth a try.

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Photo of Docer
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Release #17 22oz. bomber 8.7% ABV

Appearance: (4.0)

- I like the golden straw yellow color when pouring. Nice frothy white foam with big bubbles settles quickly to a big bubbly and lace ridden mess. Looks great. The brew is rather cloudy, and there is certainly a lot of chunky yeast sediment suspended in the brew. For me, yeast sediment is a negative as I like most beers filtered... at least the big chunks. Yeast in that amount can wreak havoc a day after drinking the beer. Don't even get me started on brett.. though I love the beers too much.

Smell: (4.0)

- Kind of a tart and fruity IPA. Grapefruit is the first thing that comes to mind. Aceto is the next, though not so sure that is what it is. Light sweet malt presence, some bready grassiness, some mild caramel. Overall not too bad.

Taste: (4.0)

- Lovely citrus and grapefruit hop flavors. Fruit and glorious hops with a nice grassy and earthy bitter hop. The malt agenda seems pretty basic, but is nice in that it isn't some sweet and loaded with caramel. It's a nice balanced light sweetness with some good bready and yeast character to it. Solid and certainly hop forward. Still though, can't tell if it is the abundant use of hops, or perhaps a slight aceto 'early-pull' type flavor going on. Certainly some pine for sure.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)

- Nice chewy medium bodied brew which is perfectly carbonated and a touch drying from the bittering. Overall easy to drink, and a touch chalky though from the mad yeast.

Overall: (3.5)

- Solid grapefruit and citrus character.. nice bready notes with a malt that isn't overly sweet. Only beef is perhaps an 'aceto-like' flavor hidden far in the back, and the serious chunks of yeast all over in this brew. It would be even better if the yeast would just settle in the glass, but it doesn't. It's like snow in a photograph.

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Photo of metter98
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is very hazy golden yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation near the edge of the glass. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and the sides of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of grapefruit and orange hops are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the overall taste is very hoppy and has flavors of grapefruit and orange along with hints of pine resin. There is a moderate amount of bitterness and the grapefruit flavors linger through the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is a very hop-forward IPA but it's not too difficult to drink because it manages to hide its alcohol very well.

Note: Release #25

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Photo of kagent777
3.86/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle picked up this weekend, so new that the website does not have info yet for this batch (#33). I poured this one into my beer goblet.

Appearance: This one is a little hazy and darker than other IIPAs that I have had. It also has little head on my pour. Other than that, no problems.

Smell: Floral, but also dank and resinous hops abound. Big hop flavors, as expected, with little else to get in the way.

Taste: Hop bitterness with a solid backbone of malt, a touch of caramel, overall huge huge flavors.

Mouthfeel: There is a slickness to this beer that must be from all the hop oil. The bitterness on the finish goes on forever.

Overall: A solid IIPA. I am not sure is any thing exceptional, but you wont go wrong picking this one up.

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Photo of dc55110
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Epic arrived on the Minnesota beer scene this week, and this is my first opportunity to give their wares a try.

Label on the bottles says: "RELEASE #4 9.9% ALC./VOL" The label also tells me I should go to epicbrewing.com to "explore this limited brew's precise details."
Here are it's precise details:
Imperial IPA Release #4
Brewed on April 18, 2011.
For release four we lowered the added mass amounts of Simcoe hops.
The Malts: Briess 2-Row Brewers Malt and Muntons Carapils.
The Hops: Columbus, Simcoe, Centennial, and Amarillo.
ABV 9.9%

Pours an nice cloudy, rusty, gold. A solid finger/finger and a half of off white head rises to the top. As the foamy bubbles reside, a nice lacing is left in their place.
The smell while nice is nothing to get too worked up about. There will be no ingestion of beer through the nose with this beer (unlike Abrasive, Pliny, Hopslam, etc...) trying to get as much pleasure from it aroma as the taste. It has a nice piney, resinous, slightly citrus offering to your nose.
This is nice west coast style IIPA. Nice and piney, with just enough citrus in the hops to not make it unbearable. It is followed by the right amount of malt to balance out the flavors.
While not thick, the beer does stick around for a while, and for me with IIPAs, that is just fine. This is not tongue and palette destroyer just a very well balance IIPA.

I'm hoping the relatively low price point ($5.99) is a permanent thing and not just a introductory teaser. I will be picking this one up again!

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Photo of MUTINY
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bomber into my Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a just-slightly hazy gold/copper with 1 1/2" foamy white head that recedes slowly. Retention & lacing are both excellent.

S: Herbal, fruity hop character jumps out of the glass. Some caramel-like sweetness. Melon. Brown sugar. Citrus. A bit of a resinous quality. Impressive.

T: Comes on malty with more brown sugar & some peppery spice. The mid palate reveals more & more hops, both in terms of citrus & overall bitterness. The finish is a slightly dull combo of lemon/lime & molasses.

M: Moderate carb married to a slick malty body. A bit soapy.

O: I actually think I like this quite a bit.

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Photo of JG-90
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

22oz pured into glass gives a medium/large creamy almost pure white head, that becomes slightly rocky as it recedes. The beer is orange in color and pretty hazy. Leaves moderate/heavy lacing. Has a stale bread/uncooked dough aroma, floral hops, and a bit of orange and lemon.

Tasts starts with a bready/doughy taste, then floral hops,a good amount of lemon, a little orange. Has a resinous, floral, bready, malty, sweet finish. Mouthfeel is moderate/heavy with an average amount of carbonation for a DIPA. The resinous/floral parts of the finish sticks to the mouth, along with a little doughiness.

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Photo of Monkeyknife
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Release #16. Poured from the bottle a cloudy nectarine-orange color with a finger of silky white head. A light sheet of lacing was left behind.

Aroma of fresh orange, lemon and sweet caramel malts.

Found this to be more malt focused with sweet caramel malts upfront followed by a bite of orange. The 8.9% abv was well hidden.

Medium bodied with a stickiness and moderately carbonated.

Not one of the top IPAs but definitely one that I found enjoyable.

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Photo of BarrelO
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter. Release #1.

A: Medium orange body with a pretty big head that leaves a bit of lacing.

S: Plenty of citrus. Almost like sniffing an actual grapefruit.

T: Citrus and pine. Some earthy notes, I think from the Columbus hops. Candy-like sweetness.

M: Medium-bodied, pretty syrupy.

D: This one didn't do a whole lot for me, but Simcoe/Amarillo is pretty hard to screw up, so it turned out OK overall.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer #64 in my great Utah Brew Hunt.

This is a decent double ipa. A bit too high on the malty sweet edge of things. But that seems to really calm down as time goes on. Unfortunately, it's replaced by a boozy burn kind of thing (I'm sensing a theme here).

A passable dipa, but nothing really worth noting.

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle, volume #16, from Drake's Party Center in Kalamazoo.

Pours murky gold with an orangey hue and an inch-plus head of bone. Plenty of spongy lacework and a partial skim coat on the surface for the duration.

Piney hops with bready malt and some wet cardboard on the nose. A hint of forest floor and honey-drizzled paper follow through.

Medium bodied with a slick, tacky mouthfeel.

The palate leads off with sweet, doughy malt and pine resin. Hints of grapefruit and citrus fruit follow through.

Finishes with a mild bitterness, somewhat sweet, and pine-rubbed cardboard.

This beer is a bit sweet and faded. The hops are subdued and one dimensional, with oxidation running throughout. Certainly disappointing for an $8.00 bomber. Freshness dating on beers should be a law.

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Photo of jellikit
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Appearance: Orange. Clear. Thin, fuzzy head. Nice lacing.
Smell: tropical fruit. A bit of alcohol.
Taste: pine sap and alcohol followed by pine tar. Grain bill comes through in the middle. Basic two-row flavor.
Mouthfeel: medium- high carbonation. Medium body. Dry. Bitter.
Overall: pretty good imperial IPA. Big hops and big alcohol.

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Photo of cjgiant
3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I believe my tastes have changed, as I really enjoyed this beer according to my previous rating. The beer is decent, but the alcohol comes through more than I'd like and I think detracts from the overall appeal of the beer.

A: yellow to yellow golden, with a nice film of sustaining head, thicker at the edges that yield nice lacing.

S: grainy, hay, meadow. It smells like the part of the brewery where mashing happen - in other words, fresh and spent grain. I get the slightest bit of grapefruit as well.

T: sweet, perhaps a little too much so, little honey-syrup-y along with the grain tastes that I get from the smell. The bitterness is the grapefruit I got in the smell, but the grain (perhaps tanins) and alcohol bite add together with this to cut the opening sweetness. Unfortunately, the combo has a saccharin kind of feel.

M: the beer is quite smooth, but the ending feel is a bit oily.

O: I enjoy front sweetness in a DIPA usually, but this either started too sweet or didn't provide a depth or bitterness to counter it. I assume I had a fresh offering, but perhaps not. I probably need to give this one more try to see if my previous higher rating or this one is more appropriate.

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Photo of bbarrows
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Release #1, 22oz bottle poured to pint glass

A: Clear amber; 1/2 inch frothy white head, not persistent, but lacing present from first sip to last

S: Strong citrus and mango, slightly spicy

T: Not as intense as I expected from the nose. Lots of grapefruit and mango. A little resinous pine to finish, along with a crisp almost carbonic bite. Not much malt backbone to balance the hop flavor or bitterness.

M: Watery, a very well-attenuated beer.

D: It's a good beer, but one pint is sufficient

At $8.90 for a 22oz, I'm not going out of my way to buy another bottle.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on-tap at Bailey's Taproom in Portland, OR.

Pours a rather cloudy and colour-wise pretty standard golden hue. Head is good and thick, forming a foamy, bubbly crown for the beer. Sheeting lace over a lightish body. Not bad all up.

Mild, smooth citrus on the nose, along with a slightly breezy vanilla-imbued malt character. Slightly earthy and organic. Pretty smooth and pleasant.

Tasty on the palate, but slightly skewed and off-colour as well. Light crisp citrus on the front, which morph into some sharper, phenolic notes mid-way through. Slight harshness on the back. Malt is solid, but it lends no real flavours to the beer as a whole. Some apricot is noticeable, but it's a weird amalgam, and slightly harsh and rotten when you get down to it.

Feel is light, but clingy with excess booze.

Not bad all up, but I've had better beers. This one suffers from the harshness which is unnecessary.

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Photo of Ego
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

nice frothy white head, rising up to 2 fingers, cloudy light orange, a small amount of carbonation is visible, really sticky lacing, while my description here does not exactly light up the word sky I would be remiss if I did not say that this is one damn fine looking beer.

big pine and honey notes, just a trace of the alcohol is apparent, this smells heavy, laden with hop oil, a nice nose

taste etc...
pretty thick stuff compared to most IPAs (of course the non filtered aspect lends to this), lots of malt presence to balance out the big hops and big ABV, the alcohol is pretty up front but the other notes are so damn big that this thing does balance out, some real nice bitter flavor, ABV warming, dark honey notes, long linger, pretty damn big beer but I would prefer more hops than booze.

tell em large marge sent ya!
this is pretty damn big in all categories, for me personally I would like a little more hop kick to really set this off, that said this is a good bold beer and worth checking out if you like such things

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Photo of argock
3.61/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 22oz brown bomber into a Duvel tulip. Batch #13 on the side of the front label (bottling date Dec 27 2011). Purchased at Peabody's Wine and Beer Merchants (Boone, NC) for $9.09.

A: Very hazy peach-orange with a thick 1-2 finger off-white head with good retention and copious craggy lace.

S: The aroma could be a lot more stout with the malt and hops too close to call. The caramel and pale maltiness is very sturdy and projects a fair amount of aroma. The complex hopping does not really come through to the extent it should as some citrus, floral, and strong herbal notes come through.

T: The flavor is solid but not spectacular by any means with a good dose of bittering and floral, lemon-orange citrus hops. The maltiness is not shying away with a lot of crackery and light caramel flavor. Not the stiff hoppiness found in the best of the best.

M: Creamy with a slight tackiness. Body is full with light-medium carbonation.

O: This Imperial IPA is nothing special. It is solid but nothing more and overpriced like most of the Epic line. I am going to steer clear of Epic from now on and buy tried and trues when tempted like 2 Hop Stoopids instead. How can Lagunitas price Hop Stoopid at $4.49 and Epic at $9 in the same category with Hop Stoopid better-to-much-better? That is truly a mystery and a sign that Lagunitas is going to last and Epic may be a flash in the pan.

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Imperial IPA from Epic Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.