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Thomas Creek Chocolate Orange IPA - Thomas Creek Brewery

Not Rated.
Thomas Creek Chocolate Orange IPAThomas Creek Chocolate Orange IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

41 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 41
Hads: 208
Avg: 3.6
pDev: 28.89%
Wants: 9
Gots: 18 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Thomas Creek Brewery visit their website
South Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ChainGangGuy on 02-01-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 41 | Hads: 208
Photo of metter98
3.62/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear and very dark reddish brown in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that quickly died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of citrusy hops are present in the nose—oranges seem to stand out in particular.
T: Like the smell, the taste has flavors of citrusy hops and a light to moderate amount of bitterness but notes of chocolate are noticeable towards the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. No crispness is detectable.
O: This is an interesting beer that starts off smelling and tasting like a citrusy IPA but then finishes with chocolaty flavors.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.31/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Clouded, rich mahogany-hued body with a thin, sputtering, white head.

Smell: Hewn grasses and a heavy-handed lemon scent -- the juice, pith, and peel. The modest toasted malt base and chocolate powder struggles to be noticed underneath the fragrant hops.

Taste: Only a light, fleeting sweetness in the fore along with tastes of toast, (faint) roast, and a little milk chocolate, assumably from the utilized malts as well as the added chocolate powder. Tang of lemon and palpably grassy with a moderate bitterness. One last nibble of toast. Dry, still firmly grassy, and still quite bitter on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-low carbonation.

Overall: You know, it's okay. Some of those "hey, look at all the IBUs" beers can be fairly harsh and, well, a bit distasteful overall. I want to thank and attribute this to the chocolate powder trying to smooth over the jagged hoppiness.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.64/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Chocolate Orange IPA? That makes no sense, but I am game.

Pours quite like a brown ale. Flavor is unique, of course. Earthy and rustic. I don't really get any chocolate and I don't really get any orange. If it is there, it's collided with the IPA character and given this rustic offering that I now am trying. An okay beer, I guess. Could/should carry more unique character, imo.

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Photo of chinchill
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz purchased and consumed near the brewery.

A: Clear, very dark ruby-brown-orange with a weak, bubbly head.

Aroma: appealing and moderately complex. Hints of orange peel, orange liquor, brown bread and chocolate.

Flavor: Moderately bitter. Chocolate malts and bitter hops dominate. A modicum of orange feighs sweetness for a moment before turning to bitter orange peel and blending with the hops. Lingering flavor of bitter chocolate, orange peel and faint hops. Enough orange to be easily detected but certainly not overdone.

Feel: medium body and medium-light carbonation.

O:A bitter-sweet Brown IPA with a touch of orange (peel) flavor.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear dark reddish brown in color with moderate amounts of visible carbonation and some ruby red highlights. The beer has a finger tall sudsy creamy light beige head that slowly reduces to a couple of medium sized thick patches of larger bubbles along with a moderate amount of very thin film covering about half of the remaining surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of citrus/orange hops.

T: Upfront there are light to moderate flavors of toasted malts with moderate flavors of citrus/orange hops which impart moderate amounts of lingering bitterness. There is a light hint of chocolate in the finish as the beer warms up.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: I found this beer to be interesting but not quite successful in my opinion - the combination of orange and chocolate is usually quite good but the chocolate is just a touch too subtle in this beer in my opinion.

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Photo of Bung
3.69/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Tap at Grapevine. A very dark brown/red. Nice frothy white head, laced the glass just a bit.

Aroma, quite a bit of citrus. Lighter herbal, pine and toasted malt.

Taste, Toasted malt an some herbal hops. There is a good chocolate presence after, especially as it warms. Some citrus but it is pretty mild. Kind of a bitter cocoa finish. It is different, probably better classified as a black ale.

The mouthfeel is nearly creamy. A finer carbonation than most, it is nice drinking with little alcohol presence. This was the best part for me.
Really a nice attempt at something different.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from growler into a Samuel Smith imperial pint. Poured a deep ruby red-orange (sort of a brown hue) with a half finger off-white (touch of tan) head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, milk chocolate, powdered chocolate, citrus hop, grass, and earth. The flavor was of sweet malt, powdered chocolate, spices, citrus hop, citrus, grass, earth hop, orange peel, and subtle earth. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent brew. They really did a good job incorporating the orange and chocolate flavors and aromas on this one. The citrus touch on this one was really quite nice as it helped to balance out the sweetness that the chocolate added. Probably one of the better IPAs to come out of Thomas Creek and definitely one of the most experimental. Looking forward to trying new things in the future.

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.6/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours like a thin brown ale with ruby edges and a one finger cream colored head. Aroma of orange peel and citrus hops, with some other spice aroma I assume is the chocolate. Flavor is toasty malts with a bitter--almost rye like--dry finish. Drinks like a black rye ipa. Medium bodied with plenty of carbonation. Actually not half bad, but certainly not chocolatey by any means.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.34/5  rDev -7.2%

12 oz bottle into a wine glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color - almost enough to be considered a black IPA, actually. The head is a finger high, with a light khaki shade. Retention is fairly good, with a semi-creamy texture. Not much lacing is left on the glass. (3.25)

Smell: I pick up a nice variety of notes in this. At first, I get a touch of citrusy hops, along with another touch of actual orange character. After a while, some toasted caramel malts appear. As a disappointment, I'm not getting much of the chocolate. In addition, the aroma is generally too mild to be great. (3)

Taste: I can definitely taste the darker malts at work here. It starts and finishes with touches of roasted coffee, brown sugar, and (yes) chocolate. The chocolate takes on a bitter-sweet tone here - those looking for a melted Hershey bar with citrusy hops, look elsewhere. Hops help to dry out the back end of any additional sweetness (in fact, it's quite bitter). Citrus peel also comes through on the finish. All in all, it doesn't work 100%, but it DOES work. (3.5)

Mouthfeel: The combination of roasted malt and healthy bitterness makes it very dry. Having said that, it has a fuller body than most standard IPAs. Carbonation is slightly subdued. (3.5)

Overall: Call it a brown IPA. While the chocolate and orange characteristics are too restrained, it somewhat compensates by successfully combining the dry bite of an IPA with the richer malt of a brown ale. I'd definitely drink it again, but I wouldn't go after it all the time. (3.25)

3.34/5: Fairly solid brown IPA, enough said

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Photo of Zach136
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red/brown. Thing white head and very little lacing. Nose is cocoa and caramel, touch of orange peel is definitely present, but hops seem to be lacking. Chocolate comes out much more on the palate. Bitter orange peel with a touch of piney hops and roasted coffee also make an appearance.

Overall a very interesting take on a hop-forward beer.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.55/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

20oz pour. Chestnut red/brown. Sudsy head with nice stick.

Citrus hops and a twangy malt backbone that conjures some toast and chocolate tones. Grapefruit, orange, pine, and roasted nuts.

Acidic hops at first, with a recognizable dark chocolate-covered orange finish. Definitive pine and citrus pith. The chocolate shows up late. So does a touch of booze.

Somewhat mellow, in that it's simple to drink. Everything is even keel. Feels good.

Strange, but a neat brew. I'm enjoying this one.

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Photo of n2185
3.74/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a clear chocolate brown with two fingers of eggshell head that fades into a thin cap with a little lacing.

S: Sweet nectarine-like hops up front with milk chocolate followed by earthy pine notes.

T: Earthy pine notes here as well with some citrus rind. The finish is more chocolaty, leaving a bitter cocoa and hop finish.

M: Medium body with lowish carbonation, this beer has an oily slick feel to it.

O: An enjoyable beer overall. There isn't much orange there, but a chocolaty IPA is an interesting and idea and mostly succeeds.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.17/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Reviewed from notes. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Russian River pint glass.

A: Pours nearly clear, medium to dark brown. Forms a good 1 1/2 finger's worth of tan head that lasts for quite awhile. Moderate visible carbonation.

S: Some pine and orange citrus hops and brown roasted maltiness. There isn't much chocolate on the nose that I can find.

T: Bitter orange and a touch of resinous hops, a somewhat biting acidity, and toasted malts with hints of light chocolate. Moderate resin bitterness in the hang.

M: Thin body and a somewhat watery mouthfeel. Average carbonation sensation and moderate alcohol presence given the high-end ABV for style.

O: This sounded like an adventurous take on a common style. But in the end, one that just didn't work. Flavorless hop bitterness too prominent, and the promised chocolate and orange were not present in an amount to warrant mention on the label. It just didn't deliver.

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Photo of 57md
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On one hand, there is no way that I can pass up a beer called “Chocolate Orange IPA” when I see it in my favorite beer store. On the other hand, I had a sinking feeling that I was going to be disappointed the moment I bought it. True!

This baby poured brownish with orange edges and a finger of beige head. The nose had hop notes, but no chocolate or orange essence was present. No orange or chocolate was upfront in the flavor profile either. There was a trace of bittersweet chocolate on the finish along with the hop bitterness, but that was hardly enough to satisfy my need for a cocoa fix.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.34/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up in Totowa, intrigued by the thought of having a IPA with chocolate and orange notes in it. While this was not a bad beer per se, those aspects of this were quite tough to pick up and this turned out to be a relatively generic dark IPA that was lacking in hops and bite, while still being relatively easygoing to drink. Thankfully, there were only 4 of these in the pack and this will serve as a weaker member of my late-Summer rotation.

The pour to this was a somewhat dark brown, with a moderately fluffy head and hardly any lacing to be seen. Surprisingly, there was a good amount of lacing as I made my way through this but the aroma wasn't really that strong to accompany that. At first, this tasted like a weak Scotch Ale since this was quite sticky with some hint of peat moss and stickiness to it. The only chocolate that I could taste here was the remnants of some bitter powder and the orange was the juiciness of the blood type. No citrus hops or bitterness could really be found here and some chocolate malt could have given this beer some more body and strength, even though the alcohol here was a bit higher than I anticipated.

While this was stronger than I would have liked it to have been, the alcohol wasn't so overpowering that the other flavors couldn't come through. It was just that the notes here weren't as pronounced as they should have been. This was something different and experimental that would have been an outstanding beer had everything been turned up a notch or to. As is, it was a relatively enjoyable beer that calls for a good valencia dessert pairing to enhance the attributes that this had, since this didn't quite stand up on its own.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.31/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

The pour was orange red in color, clear, and formed a thin head a little less than one finger tall. The smell was typical of an East Coast IPA, in the earthy, herbal, soothing quality. The taste was where the chocolate first revealed itself, as there was a splash of cocoa across the tip of the tongue before the hops overcame if with spicy pungency. There wasn't much orange peel flavor, except maybe a hint in the finish. This was certainly a good deal more complex than a run of the mill IPA. In fact I would on or to say that it was more a hoppy red ale, like the Terrapin Big Hoppy Monster, than it was an IPA. The feel of the body was thicker than most IPA's, as there was a heft to it. I liked this experiment quite a bit.

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Photo of Budinetz
3.82/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle

A- pours an interesting ruby/amber color with an off white head that hangs for quite a bit. Nice lacing throughout, sip after sip.

S- hints of citrus, a slight orange tone, with some hoppy notes

T- very subtle, but sweet chocolate on the front with a citrusy orange and bitter chocolate finish. Pretty impressive blend really. One of a kind.

M- a bit harsh up front with strong carbonation and Dryness from the hops that make my mouth pucker a bit. After swallowing and licking my lips I taste the slight chocolate presence with orange, but also delicious hops and biscuity malts.

O- very interesting beer. Definitely not a sessionable brew at 7.5% and with all the flavor it will do a number on your palette. Definitely worth trying!

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Photo of AdamBear
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The curiosity is killing me...

A-dark brown with a sticky tan head.

S-orange creamy hops with just a hint of cocoa in the background. Pretty good strength.

T-comes in with a creamy taste of some cocoa but mostly orange. It has a good amount of bitterness more so than any hop flavor. It's a good unique drinkable flavor.

M-dry medium carbonation with a nice dry finish

O-a very drinkable beer. Definitely a black IPA more so than IPA. Sounds more interesting than it really is.

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Photo of elgiacomo
3.55/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16oz Growler from Beverage World. Served at around 45F.

Pours dark brown with red highlights and a one finger beige head that recedes to a light cap and leaves some globs of lacing behind.

Aroma is big on the orange, the most prominent factor, other citrus such as grapefruit, somewhat floral and herbal, if you sniff it long enough you’ll start to pick up some hints of cocoa powder, but its subtle. Good strength overall.

Flavor is orange and grapefruit citrus up front, caramel, roasted malt and chocolate in the middle offering a hint of sweetness, finishes with strong citrusy bitterness and very mild alcohol.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with somewhat sharp carbonation.

A unique brew no doubt, and it’s actually pretty good stuff. Wasn’t sure going in but I thought it came together nicely. The chocolate is a bit subdued but is coming out more as it warms. Should be classified in the Black IPA category IMO, as this is quite dark, darker than any other regular IPA I’ve seen.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - From the look, I would suggest this to be a black IPA. It was a brownish black color with a slight white head.

Smell - The aroma showed the greatest hint of chocolate. I can't say whether it was more of a dark or mild chocolate, but the chocolate was an attention grabber.

Taste - At the front was a bitter chocolate taste. The citrus was more toward the back of the taste, but I would hesitate to call it orange. The taste grew progressively more bitter with a resiny aftertaste emerging.

Mouthfeel - The mouthfeel was thick enough to be an American IPA and demonstrated modest carbonation.

Overall - As I see it, this is a decent black IPA, with little special about it. The idea of chocolate and orange is fairly misleading.

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Photo of pagriley
3.04/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2

Pours like a brown ale with a thin white head. Nose is odd, not much orange and a waft of burnt cocoa. Taste is more of the same with a bit of astringent hops on the finish. Overall a very odd beer

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Photo of jpro
3.55/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

32oz growler from CBX. Poured into a DFH shaped pint glass...

A: Dark ruby / copper; light beige, one-finger head; nice retention, but not much lace; really dark.

S: Piney hops and citrus peel; not much else.

T: A little cocoa dances on the tongue, followed by some citrus hoppiness; finishes with some wet cardboard blandness.

M: Medium-full with high carbonation; pretty good feel.

O: Pretty good except for the blah (cardboard / paper / dirt) finish; not too much “chocolate” really.

*from notes (4/30/12)

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Photo of xShoWTeKx
4.35/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured from bottle to pint glass with a two finger white head that dissipates quickly and leaves minimal lacing. Color is a darker brown with a slight redish/orange tint.

S: Strong smell of orange and slight smell chocolate sweetness, strong citrus hop smell light earthy undertone.

T: Similar to smell with a strong citrus/orange taste with very light chocolate, nice earthy and citrus hop back.

M: Medium bodied, good carbonation, and a dry finish.

O: A very good beer, something a little different for an IPA but good. Had this a lot already and will keep enjoying and definitely recommend others to try it.

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Photo of StevenMilligan
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Disappointed by the subtlety of both the chocolate and the orange. Plenty of bitter hops, smells like chocolate, but there's minimal orange flavor at all. I'm an IPA drinker, but I think this lacked a good malty backbone. The over-bittered hops are unchecked by malt.

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Photo of Daktah
3.41/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Updated my prior 'had' after buying a four pack this week. Poured a deep amber with a frothy off white head; good lacing left behind. Not as much in the nose or taste as I remember from the tap pour at Hickory Hops a year ago, but still pleasant. Roasted malt, subtle hops and definite chocolate powder. Taste is consistent as it warms and is overall solid. Nothing too sweet or chocolatey. A good beer, but not something I'll seek out again.

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Thomas Creek Chocolate Orange IPA from Thomas Creek Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.