Old 21 Imperial IPA - The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works

Not Rated.
Old 21 Imperial IPAOld 21 Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

139 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 139
Hads: 406
Avg: 3.9
pDev: 19.23%
Wants: 14
Gots: 42 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: aracauna on 06-06-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 139 | Hads: 406
Photo of nickapalooza86
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a light amber with a half finger of white head and a slight haze.

Smell is light sweet malt and tropical fruit, kind of weak smelling for a DIPA.

Taste is sweet orange, sweet malts, bittering pine, light tropical flavors

Mouthfeel is medium full with average carbonation

A good enough DIPA, no where near as good as White Rajah. But it will do. Has a lingering sweet bitterness in the finish that I have not decided on yet.

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Photo of zac16125
3.77/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a snifter
no born on date

Thanks to BMart for sending this one my way!

A: Pours a somewhat hazy apricot orange with 1 fingers width of bright white colored head. Head dissipates down at a moderate rate and leaves a few small patches of lacing.

S: Aroma is sweet malts and sweet tropical fruits hops like apricot and pineapple. The malts are reminiscent of loads of butterscotch and some mild caramel. The hop notes seem faded, this one may be a touch old or maybe its just the hop profile, but there is very little resinous/piney/citrus/floral notes. There is a somewhat off aroma as well that I cant particular place. Not bad but could be better.

T: Hops immediately more prevalent on the tongue, with a biting piney bitterness from the first sip. I then get a good amount of citrus rind. Malt backbone is present but not to the degree that the nose implies, and certainly takes a back seat to the hops. I also dont get much of the tropical fruit notes in the taste. Bitterness is huge though, in a good way.

M/D: Full body, carbonation appropriate, ABV is very well masked, and drinkability is above average.

O: Overall, a nice DIPA. Aroma could use some improvement as the hop profile is muted and there is an off character, but the taste is loaded with hoppy bitterness and is quite good. Id drink this again if it were available to me, but I wouldnt consciously seek it out. Thanks again BMart for the extra!

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Photo of twiggamortis420
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle courtesy of mgbickel pours a fairly clear gold color with a sticky white head. Good retention and lace.

Nose is honeyed malts with a touch of toffee and tropical/grassy hops. Fairly balanced DIPA with a strawberry preserve covered biscuit aspect I am fining intriguing.

Taste is pretty nice...there is plenty of malt, but the hops shine with nice flavoring additions - both old world herbal/grassy flavors as well as some American style tropical flavors. Bitterness is fairly tame and the alcohol is uber-smooth...would have never guessed 9.5%. Malts are biscuity with a slight hint of toast. This is a really tasty beer, I could drink a couple of these back to back...no problem.

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Photo of SerialHiker
3.91/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Light orange/copper…a few bubbles on initial pouring, but they didn’t stick around…no real lasting head to speak of...(3.5/5)

Smell: Orange, citrus hops…sweet, caramel under tones…mouth watering, that’s for sure…classic IPA, hoppy all-around, with soft malt backing…(3.75/5)

Taste: Very citrusy, with some floral notes…it’s sweet when hoppy and the malt flavor is fluid and blends so well…it’s got great flavor, well rounded and not overly bitter…(4/5)

Mouthfeel: Light and fluffy initially, then settles into a floral hoppiness on the tongue…slightly bitter finish and aftertaste but nothing too extreme…malt does cover the middle of my tongue, good overall feel…(4/5)

Overall: I like this beer…it reminds me of the classic summertime IPA, citrus, sweet and hoppy all in one…I’m shocked to look at the bottle and read 9% ABV, there’s no telling…the flavor covers most to all the alcohol taste that so many stronger ales fail to do…this is a great brew to take to a party and share with folks who need some good beer education…(4/5)

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Photo of kawilliams81
3.7/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Half Acre tulip.

A- pours a hazy lemon color with a 2 finger white head. Small bubbles and trails of lacing remain on the glass.

S- honey, caramel, sweet citrus, slight grassy aroma.

T- very sweet caramel and honey, some brown sugar, lemon, oranges and pineapple with some citrus rind bitterness.

M- medium body and carbonation. Creamy, gritty, syrup and semi-dry finish.

O- not a bad dipa, but very sweet. Not sure the age on this, may be older and turned more Barleywine like? Would like to try again fresh just in case this bottle is old.

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Photo of brentk56
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber with a couple of inches of foam; the retention was stellar, with a few patches of lace sticking to the side of the glass

Smell: Smells more malty than hoppy, with a butterscotch character dominant; pith and pine, underneath

Taste: Very sweet, up front, with the butterscotch dominating the flavor through the middle, as well, though there is an assertive piney bitterness that builds; the hops finally win the tug of war, after the swallow, though there is a lingering sweetness on the tip of the tongue in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Overall: Perhaps this bottle is old (though I just bought it in a highly rated Cleveland shop), but I was surprised at the understated hop presence; given how much I liked White Rajah, I was doubly disappointed that this beer failed to live up to that beer's example

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Photo of Knapp85
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured out as a clear looking copper color, with a thin white head on top and just a touch of lacing on the glass. The smell was loaded with hop aromas ranging from pine to tropical fruits and citrus. The taste of the beer was quite nice I though, big malt backbone with a punishing amount of hops in the finish. The mouthfeel of the beer was slick and oily. Overall this beer was pretty intense. Not as balanced as the White Rajah but still not bad at all.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a small bottle with no freshness date into a New Belgium snifter. Slightly hazy light amber-gold with a thin head. Not much retention, but decent lacing. Get a quick whiff of fruit, followed by more resiny, pine-like notes with a little bit of sweet caramel behind it.

The beer has a medium body and a firm mouthfeel. A fair amount of malt sweetness up front giving it a nice biscuity taste. Hops come in and join the sweetness, bringing the flavor more towards apricot and marmalade. The hops are not as aggressive as I had hoped for. Finish is a bit sweet and doesn't give much of a lingering bitterness.

Overall this is not a bad beer, but definitely too sweet for my palate. I'm not sure how old this bottle is, but I probably won't buy this again. I like IPAs and IIPAs to be much more aggressively hopped than this.

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Photo of rudzud
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Miketd for sending me this beer. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a nice crystal clear copper/orange hue with an almost one finger white head that fades to leave a thin white blanket and thin side lacing.

S - Rather dankish. Not boozey though. Sigh; one gets spoiled with the likes of Heady Topper and hill Farmstead and the knee buckling aromas those bring to the table. This has some light malt sweetness, some biscuit, light pine, some almost faded citrus. Clearly, at one point this had pineapple aromas but this is quite faded now.

T - Taste is...dang. Far too sweet for my liking. Lots of honey like sweetness, some light booze, hop oil, slight pine, old pineapple and citrus. The sweetness though, that malty sweetness...gah!

M - Mouthfeel is pretty dark good for a 9.5% DIPA. While I dont know if one can gulp this back its still damn impressive, even with how sweet this is coming off now!

O - Overall its good, was probably really good at one point. The malty sweetness though I just really dont care for in a DIPA.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer looks nice. Smells nice (citrus toned). Nice flavor tone. Very hoppy with salty and pine resin flavor characteristics. The delivery of flavor is consistent and long lasting on this one, and I like it. I feel like this an "easier drinking" dipa. Maybe it's easier drinking because it just stays consistent and there is no pretense about trying to be all showy. Anyways. I like this one. My second from Brew Kettle, and another good one. If you see it, definitely try it out.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.42/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

LOOK: Bright golden color with a fine clarity. Small but well retaining froth leaves snake eye bubbles all around the top of the snifter. Leaves rings of lace on the glass.

SMELL: Pine, spruce, herbs, and all types lush forest aromas of hop. Pineapple juice, alcohol, and a huge malt body shine through with the suggestions of ale yeast.

TASTE: Hoppy pine notes upfront, along with grapefruit and fresh orange peel sharpness. Has a bite with a solid bitterness right there but then gives way to citrus and fruitcake notes. There are suggestions of tropical fruit as well, pineapple,mango and papaya. Sweet big pale malt backing and ale yeast fruitiness and big hops. Brewed in a West Coast fashion I might say.

FEEL: Surprisingly light on the palate, medium bodied with a good solid medium level of carbonation. A touch drying.

OVERALL: A very nice double IPA from a regional but very well respected brewery. After brewing the stellar White Raja, a world class IPA, this has significantly greater strength but is not less tasty.

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Photo of mattcrill
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Fresh cut melon, light lemon zest notes, hints of stone fruit all up front in the aroma. No alcohol heat and clean fermentation character.

Appearance: Clear amber pour with a thick and sudsy off white head.

Flavor: Pithy orange rind bitterness up front. Light crackery malt character is quickly subdued by orange juice and piney hop character. Finish is clean and dry.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, slightly oily, medium-high carbonation. No alcohol heat.

Overall impression: A nice clean Imperial IPA. Brew Kettle is quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries. They have a solid line-up and continue to impress. Well done.

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Photo of barczar
3.81/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear deep golden color with hints of copper and a one finery ivory head that dissipates into a layer of foam, leaving little lacing.

Orange citrus hop and caramel bready malt begin the aroma, leading to citrus pith bitterness and a touch of pine.

Flavor is huge citrus malt initially, grapefruit, mouthwatering, then turning decidedly bitter, with a hit of spruce and resin at the finish. There's a background grassy hop profile that is also oniony. Malt ties the hop flavor together, providing a hint of caramel sweetness.

Body is moderately heavy, with moderate carbonation and slight alcohol warmth. There's a hint of astringency.

Overall, initially a citrus hop flavor dominated, but bitterness quickly took over and controlled the profile. Booze was somewhat repressed, given the abv. Hops could've been more complex.

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Photo of oline73
3.45/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours a clear amber with a layer of off white head that goes away almost completely.

Smell: Sweet bready malt up front along with a citrus peel bitterness.

Taste: The bitterness dominates, unlike the smell. There is plenty of sweet malt in the background, but the citrus peel hop bitterness wins. The finish is quite bitter.

Mouthfeel: The body is a syrupy medium with very mild carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: Not overly impressed with this one. It's not a bad beer, but not particularly interesting either.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
3.96/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from the bottle into a tulip glass

A- Poured a remarkable clear dark golden orange color, no visible carbonation. Nice two and a half finger soapy head with big bubbles that leaves some droppy lace

S- Piney, earthy, resinous, floral, peach, and tropical notes. A lot going on, but not a very strong aroma

T- Big peach and tropical notes with some resin and earthy notes. Very big bitterness and lots of sweetness

M- Full bodied, the driest beer I have ever had, big warming sensation and alcohol presence. This beer has a big kick to it.

O- This is a big bitter and sweet DIPA. Drinks like a west coast DIPA

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

big thanks to TheBeerologist for sending this one my way. bottle label seems to have been updated since the current photo displayed, but this is defitely old 21...also says Simcoe TBK on the label. poured into an urthel tulip.

a - brew poured a crisp transparent orange witha generous offwhite classic frothy ipa head. some visible carbonation could be seen and the foamy head hung around looking chunky and creamy. lacing was fairly sticky.

s - nice citric hops could be smelled upon pouring the beer. closer inspection revealed some earthy graininess as well. lots of malt backbone.

t - much like the nose...lots of malts and simcoe. not sure on the age, but the bottle boasts about the malts as well as the simcoe so seems spot on. tastes nice, but for an imperial ipa, i tend to like more of a citric or sweaty sweet hop. the blend of the hop and malt works nicely and it feels kind of like juice. there is a toffee-ness to the malt that compliments the hop for a sweet pleasurable flavor.

m - medium bodied, soft carbonation. smooth, juice-like.

o - overall this is a good beer, but in the crazy world that is imperial ipas these days, there are better options. i did enjoy it thoroughly, but for the style...it doesn't lead the pack. great local that i'd happily have again.

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Photo of Rhynes2
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a great IPA for sure. i had it on nitro at the local beer shop and while I normally like beers on nitro i think it dulled this one just a little too much. It looks amazing with its thick dense head and the smell hints at the citrus like hops. The taste just didn't quite live up to what i was expecting. The nitro made it taste a little creamy and took out the bite of the hops I would expect from an IPA like this. It almost had a citrus cream flavor. Decent beer but not one i'm gonna rush to get again.

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Photo of stakem
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a pub glass. Cheers and a thank you to Kegatron for gifting me with a bottle of this. It takes a hearty pour down the middle of the glass to produce a head about a finger strong that looks off-white and rapidly dissolves to a thin film across the top. Rising bubbles of carbonation help sustain the cap a bit and a light swirl revives. The brew sitting underneath is clear with a copper color.

The brew smells of caramel malt mixed with a bit of buttery toffee. Then the onset of hops comes into play which smells floral and fruity. It is a little strange to take note of the malt character of a DIPA first, but im not gonna like, I actually really like the way the caramel sweetness intertwines with the floral and fruity qualities of this aroma. It really works well in an atypical sort of way.

The taste is no shocker when compared to the aroma. It contains a toffee to caramel-like sweetness before the onset of fruity and floral hops. The hops are juicy and full flavored before the bitterness settles on the tongue. Once I pick up on the bitterness and focus on that, it becomes a bit more herbal and borderline piney with a bit of a mineral inclusion. there is a mild note of alcohol showing through on the backend which is a bit solvent almost like a neutral spirit like vodka. It is interesting that this is the only point in the experience where that 9.5% abv starts to show itself.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. For the most part it is clean and easy drinking for a 9.5% brew. This was a nice departure from the DIPA norm but honestly it isn't something I would want to buy a bunch of if I was looking for a hop bomb assault. Overall this is an easy approaching and enjoyable middle of the road brew.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a crystal clear copper, with a finger of foamy bright-white head. This retains with roughly a ¼ finger of creamy froth, leaving back some good looking swathes of sticky lace. Floral hops and tropical fruit blow up in the nose, with notes of pine, grapefruit, spice, and a light dankness working themselves in as well. Grains had a soft doughy feel across the back. As this warms, the tropical fruit and herbal character picks up some strength.

The taste is aggressive with grapefruit bitterness and pine, which mostly controls the profile the whole way through into a strong finish of dry spiciness and a deep resinous feel that penetrates the tongue. A sticky blend of sweet fruit, malt, and herbal tones helps to soften things a bit from underneath but the hops definitely have some power here. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied and sharp on the tongue, with a slick firm creaminess that spreads out into the mouth. Unfortunately you start to feel every inch of that 9% ABV as this warms, which kept s back immensely on the drinkability of this after it sits for a while.

This was pretty darn decent initially, with some powerful yet fairly well balanced hop power to it but that big ABV eventually started to rear its ugly head and ruin the party. My advice is to pop the cap and drink this within the half hour or so.

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Photo of Vonerichs
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky pale golden yellow body with loads of sticky lacing.

Pleasant aroma of tropical fruits... Pineapple, mango, and orange. Little malt presence.

A solid showcase of simcoe hops. Tropical fruit dominates the hop profile. Spot on with the bitterness.

Mouthfeel is sticky with low carbonation.

It's a solid DIPA and certainly quenches any hophead's craving.

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Photo of BB1313
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

I've had this one before a few times. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a clean transparent golden with a slight haze, eggshell white head fades, decent lacing and nice retention, nice looking beer. This one has some pretty dank aromas; Simcoe hops clearly dominate. Very tropical with lots of peach, mango, and pineapple. More tropical fruits in the flavors. Bitter, but there's a decent sweetness. Malt is there, but doesn't dominate at all and lets the hops shine. Juicy. I feel it could possibly use a touch of carbonation although it's there; somewhat flat and syrupy/resiny, but it actually makes for a smooth drink, I can dig it. Alcohol goes unnoticed, easy drinking and leaves you wanting more. Great DIPA..

If you experience this one fresh, it's extremely impressive. I'm really glad to see this one in 4pks now. This is a pineapple bomb, dank stuff!

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Photo of jmarsh123
4.06/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ninner00 for the bottle!

Pours a semi-clear orange with a thin white head and good lacing.

A little bit of citrus and tropical fruit hoppiness, but the nose is very subdued compared to others in the style.

Very impressed by the flavor after a non-descript aroma. Starts off with some very juicy tropical fruit. A touch of caramel malt balances out the hops and it finishes with a nice pine presence.

Good mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Very impressed by this one. It's not among the elite, but has some complex hoppiness to it and enough malt to balance it out.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.42/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a lightly hazy yellow to orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, pineapple and orange citrus hops. In the taste, dry pine like hops and a light malt, small notes of citrus. A small bite and medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a dry pine and small alcohol in the aftertaste. Big citrus in the nose, but dry pine in the taste, nothing more than above average.

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Photo of wvsabbath
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Golden tan/yellow, monster 3+ inch head and alot of lacing.

Smell - Piney hops, grapefruit, light malts, lemon, orange, a little bread and floral. Not overly strong aromoa.

Taste - Its a dipa so, huge pineapple/grapefruit citrus hop kick at first swig. Orange and lemon make up most of the floral fruit flavor. Malts are present but are masked a little behind the hops, which they should be!. Some alcohol infact does come out in the swallow. Has a spice kick to it also. Very complex actually and balanced also.

Mouthfeel - Big, strong, hoppy!. Whole mouth gets coated with hops. Tounge gets bittered from the hops, then warmed from the alcohol. palette gets hops and alot of sweetness from the hops and added sugars. Aftertaste is thick, piney, resin coated tounge and alcohol warmed.

Overall - Very well done beer, I paid 4.99$ for this 22oz'er and that alone makes it untouchable. But, give the fact its really tastly and well done, its a must try from a killer brewery! The alcohol comes out a little bit much, and thats the only negitive about this beer for me.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Clear amber body, on the lighter side. Nice fluffy eggshell head.

S - Prominent tropical fruit, light citrusy and piny hops. A sweet thing too. A nice nose, but a bit small for Imperial.

T - Some bitter and astringent notes, but A nice hop profile. Sweet tropical fruits, and then some bitter perfumy astringency. It's close to great, but not quite.

M - A biting feel from the bitterness and the carbonation. A little bit more intense than I like my IIPAs.

O - This is good, but not great. One of the more tropical fruity IPAs I've had. But, it does not live up to White Rajah.

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Old 21 Imperial IPA from The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works
87 out of 100 based on 139 ratings.