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Firewater India Pale Ale - Catawba Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Firewater India Pale AleFirewater India Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

156 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 156
Reviews: 67
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 13.51%
Wants: 4
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Catawba Brewing Co. visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: oberon on 03-15-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 156 | Reviews: 67 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GrapesofWrath


1.54/5  rDev -55.7%

Canned 164/2014 (sometime May-June)

Appearance is sandy blond with a nice, off white head.

The smell is straight biscuit malt
No hops, nothing of a vegetable, fruit, grass, weed, or environmental nature. As a cream ale, this would be acceptable- as an IPA- no.

Taste: Absolutely no hops- Just light malt. Imagine PBR with ale yeast. This is a pathetic attempt at an IPA. I've never had a homebrew this lacking in character...

Mouthfeel: Light and spritzy with acceptable carbonation .

Overall: Worst IPA I've ever had. Out of 1000+ India Pale Ales, this is the most pathetic attempt I've tried and I will never waste money on this again. I asked for and (after the beer manager gagged) received a refund. Shameful.

06-29-2014 02:50:58 | More by GrapesofWrath
Photo of JohnQVegas


2.13/5  rDev -38.8%

Draught. Pours a fairly nondescript gold, small offwhite head. Towards the end of the night - lots of astringent, medicinal quality where the hops should be. Finish is lots of aspirin. I did not end up finishing this - part of it could be a lack of freshness, but I cant be sure.

03-29-2009 14:58:04 | More by JohnQVegas
Photo of mwbrady12

North Carolina

2.25/5  rDev -35.3%

07-17-2013 01:00:32 | More by mwbrady12
Photo of zeledonia


2.44/5  rDev -29.9%

Tasted 20 March 2013.

Pours a pale golden straw yellow. Huge white head, thick and foamy. Good retention, nice lacing. Very solid.

Smell is grainy, herbal, and reminiscent of some kind of tincture. Smells like oils extracted from plants, with a dash of hop acid in the back.

Taste is thin and grainy, like pale boiled grains. An acidic chalky medicinal bitterness fades in, making it even worse. No sweetness, no positive flavors, no balance. It's not exactly terrible, but I'd rather not drink it. It's like everything in here is over-extracted, releasing all the acids and tannins and burning off the aromatics and sugars.

Feel is fine. Medium-bodied, appropriate level of carbonation. More lasting than I want it to be.

Not my favorite. Hate to say it, but this is the kind of beer that turned me off to IPAs. There's not much to it other than thin grainy flavors and aspirin-like bitterness with nothing to balance it out. I finished it, but I wouldn't drink another.

03-29-2013 04:00:13 | More by zeledonia
Photo of penguinboat


2.5/5  rDev -28.2%

08-03-2012 16:40:34 | More by penguinboat
Photo of fishrunner


2.5/5  rDev -28.2%

04-04-2014 22:38:07 | More by fishrunner
Photo of mattsdenney


2.63/5  rDev -24.4%

On-Tap @ SunSpot on the strip in Knoxville.

A: Golden orange in color, bubbly, thin head and lacing.

S: Citrus, sweet.

T: Hmmm, definitely bitter but not as much of a hop bite as I would expect in an IPA. Honestly reminds me of a SN Pale Ale knockoff.

M: Light, oily and a little slick.

D: Catawba must have amazing sales reps b/c I can't believe that any bar/restaurant would keep this on draught as their primary IPA, especially with the variety of options available within the style.

12-31-2010 15:17:15 | More by mattsdenney
Photo of nickfl


2.73/5  rDev -21.6%

A - Pours with one finger of white foam on top of a slightly hazy, golden body. The foam settles fairly quickly and leaves decent lace.

S - Some spicy to slightly sweaty hops and light malt.

T - A bit of pine and acidic malt up front. Some grain and burnt toast in the middle with a finish of pine and somewhat harsh bitterness.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, a dry finish and a touch of astringency.

D - Not very good. The hop character is almost all in the bitterness with a unfortunate lack of aroma and flavor. Couple that with anemic malt and harsh bitterness and you have a poor showing.

10-25-2012 03:16:12 | More by nickfl
Photo of pheelingIt


2.75/5  rDev -21%

07-11-2014 02:04:59 | More by pheelingIt
Photo of SportsandJorts


2.81/5  rDev -19.3%

Appearance: orange tending towards yellow color. A finger of a white head that fades and leaves the slightest lacing. Strong clarity.

Smell: lots of medium crystal malts. Mostly crystal sweetness with a slight caramel. Very light on the citrus and resin hop aroma.

Taste: opens with a strong crystal sweetness. Some grassiness, slight citrus and herbal hop. Some spiciness from hops as well

Mouthfeel: sticky, not too refreshing.

Overall: an overly sweet and dull hoppiness makes for a bad ipa. No refreshing qualities and rather bland in a world of lots of ipas.

05-01-2014 01:26:35 | More by SportsandJorts
Photo of AlexJ

North Carolina

2.85/5  rDev -18.1%

Light golden yellow pour with a quick white head that fades fast. Some light lacing left behind.

Aroma is grainey and flowery, not very IPAish. Only a trace of detectable hops in the nose.

Flavor is an unbalanced tug of war between biscuity and cereal malts and undiscernable hops. Bitter, but not structured or even remotely complex.

Average body for an IPA, grainy, almost chalky mouthfeel.

10-02-2005 22:59:48 | More by AlexJ
Photo of humuloner22

North Carolina

2.86/5  rDev -17.8%

I used to love this brewery but I just don't know anymore. This beer was great on draft the best I can recall, now they are canning it. I found it along with the other two usual suspects in their lineup. Maybe this was a bad batch, but I found it to be underwhelming. The smell was hop forward, the color was a bit of a tangerine and gold color, which is typical and not that bad really, but the taste was not the best in the world and the mouthfeel was what really got to me, it was watery and had very little in regard to balance. The hops were there but it tasted like hoppy soapy light beer. I don't know if that is a good assessment, but I was sadly disappointed because I was excited to see this beer canned for convenience. It was much better in my memory on draft or at least the growler I had picked up, because this brewery can make some really nice beers, especially the saison.

02-05-2014 05:50:51 | More by humuloner22
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

2.9/5  rDev -16.7%

Had this at Barleys Tap Room in Asheville,I admit I was intruiged by the name,the beer was not anything great though.Kind of deep copper color with orange hue not much head,the aroma was mainley minty from what I got.Not real flavorful mainley hoppy not to much balance here,did go down pretty easy though.Wont try again.

03-15-2003 06:09:20 | More by oberon
Photo of JohnnyMc


2.95/5  rDev -15.2%

My first beer from Catawba Valley!

Pours out a bright yellow/orange with 3 fingers of off-white head.

The aroma is a mix of grassy/earthy hops and citrus notes along with a touch of caramel malt.

The taste is primarily the grassy hop notes along with orange and lemon peel, a slight white grape characteristic and a good amount of caramel and bready malt notes. Finishes very crisp and only slightly dry.

A light-medium body with a crisp mouthfeel. This is a pretty average IPA, but it's not bitter enough in my opinion and the hop notes are pretty subdued. Not a bad beer, but nothing great. Would love to try more from this brewery though.

01-05-2013 00:20:56 | More by JohnnyMc
Photo of farrago

New Jersey

2.98/5  rDev -14.4%

Pure white foam, mostly miniscule foam that evaporates as if it was hollow, dissolves down to a thin broken surface coating, the lacing forms a solid sheet down the glass sides, almost coats any free space. Deep golden hued liquid, touch of zinc orange, it slightly hazy but up close it’s not like the liquid is full of particulate, more like it’s filled with tiny bubbles in suspended animation with only a few random larger bubbles showing any movement. Simple nose, even on the clean side, displays hard crusted baguette, grapefruit and more earth than grass, light minerality, not much fruit but minor floral notes, on the soft side, easygoing. Medium-bodied, its general creaminess adds weight. Carbonation comes across as low. Lacking in bite but the herbaceousness does accrue by the end. No sweet citrus, rather on the malty side. Again, has a metallic, minerally side. Bready finish with some honey. Agreeable if dull and without distinct personality, could stand to possess a cleaner, more succinct finish.

02-27-2013 03:00:35 | More by farrago
Photo of dailyminefield

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -13.8%

07-19-2014 23:44:17 | More by dailyminefield
Photo of aleckpa

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -13.8%

02-28-2014 01:22:45 | More by aleckpa
Photo of freduardo


3/5  rDev -13.8%

11-23-2012 02:22:42 | More by freduardo
Photo of Cresant


3/5  rDev -13.8%

Served this 12 oz. can in a Sam Adams glass. No date. The body was a nice golden amber with a light haze. The off white head was soapy looking and faded quickly. A thin cap remained and created light lacing in the glass.

The smell was lightly citrusy with a mild malty/syrupy character. It bloomed a little floral as it warmed further.

The taste was gentle. Gentle bitterness and gentle sweetness. However, a second wave of bitterness appears and lingers a long time. Not overly hoppy and maybe a little south of fresh. This one was fruity and clean. It grew on me and I liked it better as I drank it.

The mouthfeel was medium to light with plenty of carbonation.

06-06-2012 12:15:35 | More by Cresant
Photo of MartzMimic


3/5  rDev -13.8%

04-16-2014 17:12:51 | More by MartzMimic
Photo of jaswilson2

South Carolina

3/5  rDev -13.8%

02-19-2014 14:18:36 | More by jaswilson2
Photo of inspektor

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -13.8%

09-05-2013 03:09:29 | More by inspektor
Photo of JohnParadee


3/5  rDev -13.8%

05-21-2014 15:15:38 | More by JohnParadee
Photo of ncstateplaya

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -13.8%

06-13-2014 12:36:45 | More by ncstateplaya
Photo of trecker


3/5  rDev -13.8%

On tap at a little sports bar that starts with an S and has $2.50 drafts on Sunday in Asheville.

This was very average. Not bad. Not notable though.

1 inch white foam head. Light copper color. Faint hop aroma. Very faint fruit aroma. Kinda hoppy taste.

Decent basic IPA. Maybe my review is unfair because I've been throwing back west coast IPAs lately.

02-20-2011 02:29:56 | More by trecker
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Firewater India Pale Ale from Catawba Brewing Co.
79 out of 100 based on 156 ratings.