1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Terrapin Hop Karma IPA - Terrapin Beer Company

Not Rated.
Terrapin Hop Karma IPATerrapin Hop Karma IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

997 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 997
Reviews: 542
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 9.97%
Wants: 78
Gots: 57 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

"The Terrapin Hop Karma IPA (formerly known as the India Style Brown Ale) is a head on collision between a hoppy, west coast IPA and a complex, malty brown ale. Brewed with 5 varieties of hops and 7 different malts, this hybrid style represents the best of both worlds." 65 IBU

(Beer added by: athensbeermaster on 04-02-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Terrapin Hop Karma IPA Alström Bros
Ratings: 997 | Reviews: 542 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of orcasteve
3.15/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

this was a great idea in prinsaple but dosent quite work in reality, i like the hoopy aftertaste and i like the heavy brown malt flavor but i am not fond of the middle of the beer ware one flavor ends and the outher starts. this is to carbonated for a brown. but their is a great amount of hops, that is this beers best quality

Photo of NCSUdo
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle

A: Pours a deep brown with some red mixed in, under a half inch worth of thick tan head. Nice retention and lace.

S: Smells of grapefruit hops, roasted malt, nuts and a hint of chocolate.

T: Taste is dominated by hops, but not overly bitter. A good citrus hop, mostly a light grapefruit. Hints of a toasted malt round out the taste.

M/D: Full bodied, smooth, carbonation is only slightly felt. A really good beer, entirely drinkable. Really nicely done.

Photo of TATTORSO
2.95/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle with a best by date of 01/09.

A standard pour in to a 16 oz. Imperial pint glass produced a slim, 1 finger coffee colored head. Chestnut brown with a warm, pomegranate glow when back lit.

S ~ Sweet roasted malts, grapefruit rind, dark rye bread, fresh cut grass, coffee.

T ~ Floral hops first - up front, tobacco, bitter coffee & roasted malts, toasted rye bread, citrus rind. Hard to separate...

M ~ Good carbonation with a lighter, uninspiring body. Sharp, dry finish with a lingering bitterness.

D ~ Probably a session beer for someone who appreciates this hoppy, hybrid style. A little bit confusing for me...the bottle says "A collision between a hoppy West Coast IPA & a malty English Brown Ale." More like a fender bender.

Photo of HopDerek
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jophish17 for the hookup on this.

Pours what appears to be a clear brown, but is really a dark rich red in the light with burnt orange hues. Two fingers of frothy light tan head has good retention and leaves some nice lacing. Smells of citrus, nuts, brown sugar, spices, roasted malt, and earthen hops. Tastes lightly of citrus up front followed by caramel and nuts, spice, roasted malt, light coffee and grass. Medium bodied with nice fizzy carbonation. Roasty and sweet with a great hop presence and a nice bitter finish. A surprisingly good brown ale with some kick, very refreshing and with a little twist on the style that I like.

Photo of Lordsloth
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, courtesy of Cashew70. My man. :)

Pours a nice dark brown, with a decent tan head. Smells like darkly roasted malts with a sweet hop aroma. Tastes like a good, malty brown ale, with a decently sharp hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium, somewhat dry, with a pleasant malt/hop aftertaste. Drinkability is good. I could go for another. Easy drinking, but packs a flavorful punch.

Photo of JDV
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle in trade from gford217. Thanks!
Pours a nice dark brown with a small amount of light getting through. Nice, lasting beige head. Smell is hoppy and bright, with molasses like sweet toasty malt. Very nice combination. Taste is hoppy and bright with a dark toasty malt background. Smooth body and moderate carbonation. I almost want a bit more sweetness out of it. Overall, a pretty nice and unique beer.

Photo of wedge
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark coppery-brown with a small, but thick and persistent off-white head. Roasted, lightly chocolaty and nutty malt aroma blanketed with a leafy, spicy dry-hop aroma. Much more pine than citrus. Roasted malt sweetness hits the tongue followed by a wave of well-integrated hops. Earthy, nutty, piney. A distinct hint of chocolate near the finish is nice. Medium bodied with a solid bitterness

Not quite as good as I remember it being on cask, but I'm glad they decided to bottle it...a good choice to have in the fridge.

Photo of Strix
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown with a nice head, decent retention.

Smells delicious, rich dark bread and malts. A hint of hops in the smell, but not much.

Wow, this impresses. The malty goodness of a brown ale with a serious graprefruit hop presence. Bready flavors mix in with a nice blend of piney resiny hops.

Mouthfeel smooth yet chewy.

I was quite impressed by this one. Highly drinkable and worth seeking out.

Photo of Jason
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with a freshness date.

Three fingers of light tan head rise after a healthy pour, muddled tawny color that only shows some clarity when put to the light. Sweet toasted grain and a mildly pungent spicy hops meld well in the nose. Big on smoothness with a semi-creamy medium body. Big hop character with a pungent oilly flavor throughout of pine, tree bark, wild flowers and grapefruit rind. Maltiness holds a good foundation together with toasted bread crust, chicory and cracker like graininess. Finishes a little bitter and dry though refreshing.

Nice fusion of styles though they could have just called it a hoppy brown ... but that would have taken away from the whole scheme of things. Really good drinking here ... glad to hear it is year round!

Photo of silver0rlead
4.38/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice mahogany color with a creamy tan head that retains well and leaves nice lacing. The aroma is also nice, with a floral and citrusy hops character upfront, followed by a nutty and caramel like scent in the background along with a mild fruitiness. The flavor is similar to the aroma, with a nice citrusy and floral hoppiness initially, followed by a solid malty backbone with flavors of pecans, toasted bread and caramel, as well as some fruity esters. The mouthfeel is smooth with light carbonation and the drinkability on this one is off the scale. Overall a very good beer from terrapin (one of their best in fact), this one blows the DFH Indian Brown out of the water.

Photo of rtratzlaff
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

After trying this on tap and enjoying it, I sprung for the sixer.

Pours a clear deep rubyish brown color with a thin off white head (I wonder if this is due to the glass and not the beer).

Smells are grassy hops darker malt aromas.

The first sip leaves a good lingering bitterness of the hops on the tongue. The malt character isn't quite as assertive, but the flavors are definitely there. Interesting flavor profiles play on the tongue. Not like any beer I've had before, but yet very much like I would imagine a hoppy brown to be. Some orange rind like flavors come in late. The malt character was much more flavorful on tap than in the bottle.

Tobacco, dark toast, bitter chocolate, and a nuttiness appear as it warms. It just transitions from the India to the Brown between the first and second half of the glass. This beer gets better as it sits a bit.

Mouthfeel is medium and supportive. This beer would probably pair well with nearly anything from chocolate to a cheeseburger. It is a complex and tasty.

Photo of Floydster
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle acquired in a trade with gford217 as an extra, thanks for including this in my package, poured into a pint glass last night

A-Medium brown in color with a little bit of an orange, head is light tan and frothy, it is about 3/4 inch and stuck around for five minutes or so, nice retention, no lacing

S-Hoppiness, mostly grapefruit and lemons, lots of citrus, deep malt, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, cinnamon, candy, lots of sweet accents, a hint of vanilla, and cream

T-First sip was like a citrusy IPA with a heavy reliance on grapefruit hoppiness, then some malt was in the middle but not much, finish was a mixture of sweetness and bitterness which was quite unique, as it warmed it started to taste more like a brown ale, sweeter and more malty, hops were still in the aftertaste but not nearly as prominent, would have liked to see more complexity instead of just a sudden switch of dominant flavors but it was still good regardless

M-Sweet, dry, bitter, and coated mouthfeel, thin bodied, lots of carbonation, taste lingered longer while it was cold but still not very long, needed more fullness

D-Could drink three or four bottles of this no problem, light on the stomach, not too high of an ABV, smooth, taste is inviting, goes down easy, not too thick

This is pretty much a brown IPA, hence its name, and when I read the description of a hoppy brown I was excited, this stuff was pretty good, wish more breweries did this kind of thing instead of just relying on the malty and nutty flavors for their brown ales, another good beer from Terrapin and I look forward to trying more beers from this brewery in the future, would drink again, recommended

Photo of akorsak
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle courtesy of gford217.

A: The brown ale is predictably brown, a dark caramel or coffee color that resembles a still cola. A 2-plus finger head required two pours to empty the bottle and there are hints of lace around the glass.

S: The ale has a nice blend of caramel and toffee malts and citrusy grapefruit hops. The hops have a sweet floral presence.

T: The ale's body is heavy on the malt side, thick with treacly caramel and toffee. Roasted nuts also add a dry flavor element. The hops don't stand out so much up front but as the ale continues to warm up the profile emerges. Floral hops has a medicinal, herbal flavor to the ale. Citrus flavors also come through, adding some grapefruit. The hop flavors, while strong, do not overtake the brown ale's malt qualities.

M: The mouthfeel is more brown than India, showing off the malts at the expense of the expansive hop mix.

D: The ale is quite drinkable, a nice brown ale pumped up with lots of hops.

Photo of jdubjacket
3.45/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bought at the Toco package store in Atlanta. Pours a deep brown with a decent head. Alot of lacing along the glass on this one. Good amount of malt in the nose. Taste is pretty well-balanced between the hops and barley. Taste is relatively subdued though. Mouthfeel is pretty watery, but this beer is drinkable. Overall, not my personal favorite. But this isn't a bad beer.

Photo of BamaBeerBuff
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"Best By" notch of Week 3 in December. This stuff was just bottled.

A: Pours a dark ruby color with a frothy, light tan head that settles fairly quickly to a decent frothy disc of foam. Not much lacing to speak of here.

S: Intense floral and citrusy grapefruit hop aromas. Sweet and lightly toasted caramel malts, some nutty aromas as well.

T&M: Initial bitter flavors of citrus and herbal hops give way to a balanced sweetness and a long, lightly bitter and roasted finish that showcases some nice chocolate malt flavors and light citrus hoppiness. Initially, I was a bit wary of such an eclectic blend of flavors, but it really works well for me. The body is medium with a decent amount of carbonation that helps accent some of the hop flavors.

D: Rather drinkable. The body definitely tends towards the heavier IPA side than the lighter quaffable brown-ale side, but the flavor is interesting and complex. I could make a mini-session out of this one.

Photo of rajendra82
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled Terrapin IBA, with a label featuring artwork depicting the eponymous reptile playing a Sitar, when poured into a pint glass, looked red tinged brown, and sported a small head. The smell was pretty much halfway between the two styles as the citric hops intersected with a nutty malt. The taste was wavering between these two styles as well before ultimately settling closer to an IPA. The mouthfeel was a letdown to me, as the body felt watery and somewhat weak. The finish was dry and mineralized. I am not sure why Terrapin chose to release this style of beer, but my mind just kept going back for a comparison to a similarly constructed but wholly superior Big Hoppy Monster from them. Worth trying and savoring, but not a spectacular offering.

Photo of arkhamresident
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz from Green's on Ponce. Poured into Terrapin snifter.

A - One inch light tan head that works its way down to almost nothing in little time. The brew itself is very dark, looks black but appears ruby when back lit. Scant lacing.

S - Piney, citrusy, caramel, coffee and a slight boozy bite at the end. Slight whiff of vanilla maybe? Makes me think this is what a caramel Frappucino would smell like if you added hops. Strangely enjoyable.

T - Upfront all hops. More citrus than pine but both present. Mid is more malty, caramel, but some slight hop bitterness shows up here too. Back is coffee and yummy pine.

M - Average carbonation. Mouthfeel isn't watery nor full. Average.

D - I could have a few.

It's good, it's weird but good. My tastebuds are still confused by this odd mash up of styles.

Photo of gabeerfan
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, dark brown with amber/red highlights. Nice off-white head that falls to a thin cap. Some lacing.
Light aroma. But there is some dark chocolate, earthy hops and hints of dried fruits.
Good flavors. Dark chocolate comes through first with hints of dried fruits, some earthy hops in there and a good balance of brown sugar/caramel/toffee sweetness.
Full bodied mouthfeel. Finishes fairly dry.
Very drinkable. A little too high in ABV to drink all night, but having a couple won't make you knee-walking drunk. Flavors aren't so overwhelming that you would get tired of this quickly.
Very good offering from a very good brewery. As the name "India" implies, it is more flavorful than most brown ales and it lives up to that label. Highly recommended.

Photo of atsprings
4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Village Draft House in Raleigh, served a nice dark brown with an off white head that lasts as a thin layer and leaves spotty lacing. Aroma is pine hops and some nutty malts. The taste is a great balance of pine hops with a plethora of malt flavors; caramel, toffee, chocolate and dried fruits. The beer is on the light side of medium with just a touch of carbonation. This one is very enjoyable and I must say, I'm glad they will be bottling it and will likely make this a regular purchase.

Photo of everetends
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on cask at the J. Clyde yesterday. Served in an imperial pint nonic.

A: Came out a beautiful dark red/brown with a huge off white head that lasted the entire beer. Great to look at.

S: This was the down side of this beer. Only thing I got was oak. There was a little trace of malt but the oak really overpowered the nose of this beer.

T: The taste was a little more complex than the nose. Had an heavy dose of oakiness but nothing sickening, especially once it warmed. Nice malt character with some great earthy hops. Had a slight brown sugar or molasses sweetness to it.

M: Had a creamy consistency that really coated the mouth. Light carbonation. Really coated the mouth and allowed the flavors to mingle with your tongue.

D: I could only have one of these in a sitting. The oak is a little heavy and makes it a bit taxing with that nose. Still I would drink this again.

Photo of tiger88
4.35/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep brownish red with a nice size whit head that lasts a while longer than average. As the head dissipates, a light lacing is left randomly around the glass. The subtle smell of nutiness is wrapped around the hops and the caramel scent comes through. This is a great tasting beer. Like a perfectly balance between nutty brown ale and hops. Terrapin has outdone themselves with this one. Easy to drink several in a sitting.

Photo of paulthebeerguru
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Terrapin India Brown Ale
Draught at The Ravenous Pig for the Terrapin Beer Dinner

A: poured into a straight pint. deep rich mahogany color with a nice light tan head. moderate head retention with fair lacing.

S: smooth and malty aroma, with a nice nutty texture, with some earthy hop aromas.

T: very nice malt backbone, solid nutty flavors with a nice molasses finish. a slight spicy hint, but nothing too serious. some solid earthy hop characteristics.

M: smooth and creamy mouthfeel. good carbonation level with a medium body.

D: very nice treat for us in Orlando. well worth a try. I enjoyed this brew a lot.

Photo of gford217
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap in a pint glass at the Mellow Mushroom.

A: Pours dark brown with hints of amber with a dense one inch head that showed solid retention and very good lacing.

S: Smell is much more typical of an IPA than a brown ale. There's a huge resiny pine hop aroma up front with a decent amount of citrus thrown in as well. Only a hint of sweet malts in the nose.

T: Much like the smell, taste is dominated by the hops - pine, grass, grapefruit. There is a little more sweet malt presence with some caramel and bread. Still, for a brown ale, this is really hoppy.

M: Very smooth but extremely crisp in the finish with a hop bite in the aftertaste.

D: I really liked this beer though I have a hard time comparing it to brown ales. Either way, this is one I will buy again.

Photo of RustyDiamond
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16oz pour at the Raging Burrito, in a std pint glass. Nice 2 fingers of almond colored froth. Aromas of roasty malt and floral hops.
Really nice balance of nutty malt with a very noticeable hop flavor. Great lacing in the glass. Very drinkable for this non-brown ale fan.

Photo of dhd1491
4.33/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on-tap at Mellow Mushroom with a couple slices of Hawaiian. I've had a couple of brews from Terrapin, and they're a local, so I tried it. I was a little apprehensive since I usually don't love brown ales. The name "India Brown" had me worried that, in trying to marry a brown ale and an IPA, they wouldn't get either right.

Boy, was I pleasantly surprised. Good dense reddish-brown color and firm short head of tan bubbles let me know this was going to be a beer of substance. But how would it taste? Floral, orangy citrus hops burst forth like a really good IPA. But wait, there's more. Malty, nutty, smoky mid-tones like a brown ale. All of it well balanced between bitter and sweet. Very flavorful, very easy to drink. Terrapin's India Brown has just joined the "short list" of everyday favorites for me.

Terrapin Hop Karma IPA from Terrapin Beer Company
88 out of 100 based on 997 ratings.