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

Not Rated.
Old 21 Imperial IPAOld 21 Imperial IPA

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BA SCORE
87
very good

369 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 369
Reviews: 135
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 11.6%
Wants: 13
Gots: 32 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: aracauna on 06-06-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 369 | Reviews: 135 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old 21 Imperial IPA makes it clear on the label that it pretty much hits you with on hop variety aka Simcoe. It's hard not to compare this to Weyerbacher's Double Simcoe IPA. Dank mary jane, pith of Grapefruit with the peels, super pungent hop nose here. A bit of sugar coated malt backing this label states there's 90 IBUs and 9% abv. This beer isn't messing around. Besides the lighter copper golden color this beer appears to have it pretty much mirrors the Simcoe DIPA from Weyerbacher. Full thicket of off white head forming thick bands of lacing. Flavor is super bitter with an earthy grapefruit/dank marijuana/earthiness that doesn't exist with any other type of hop out there. Super big malt layer stands up to the onslaught of Simcoe hops but just barely, again these guys are awesome homebrewers gone pro. They understand the brewing process and I'm excited to try the next variation of the same beer that they produce. Mouhfeel is medium bodied with a evident alcohol infused base that hasn't been there in any other variation of this style, pretty hot if you know what I'm saying. At least their small brewing operation can ferment out to this level, resinous oily texture from the hop additions brings on a full mouthfeel compared to most single to double IPAs old 21 isn't messing around it's a display of what this brewer is capable of. Overall drink more Brew Kettle beer if you're lucky enough to find it then you should be drinking it. I know that Premium Beverage out of Columbus has distribution rights but I demand to see more of this near my beer store in Steubenville OH, considering the great bomber prices people will try these beers and be thoroughly impressed.

Photo of Hojaminbag
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Brew Kettle Old 21 Imperial IPA has a light orange body with a good looking off-white head. The retention and lacing are both quite good.

The aroma has a mix of malt and hops. Pale malt combines with a bit of darker caramel malt. The hops are pretty noticeable, with grapefruit peel, orange and a some resin.

Fruity simcoe hops are all over the place, with all kinds of citrus and a resinous, yet slightly grassy flavor. These hops are paired with a good bit of pale malt, but also some sugar-cookie and caramel flavored malt. There is a moderate amount of bitterness. The finish has a little bit of boozy warmth to it.

The body is surprisingly light for the ABV, but somehow it manages to avoid being out of place.

This is a pretty balanced IIPA. To be honest, I don't have strong feelings about it one way or the other.

Photo of steve8robin
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one on a trip to OH. 22oz bottle...

A: A nice crystal clear scotch color with a small white head that fades at a decent pace to a lace atop the brew. Good.

S: Can smell from the table. A floral hop upfront quickly followed by a unique iced tea scent. Kind of a bready apple scent on the backend. Unique, but strange. Decent.

T: A very strong apple / iced tea flavor upfront with some hints of sugary malt and then a bitter earthy hop wall in the middle. Not really an IPA IMO. This should be labeled as an American Barleywine. They need to cut back on some of the malt backbone to get more into the IPA category. Either that or up the hops. Good.

M: Medium body with a very well hidden carbonation. A sugary malt finish. Good.

O: I'd say this brew is good, but not great. Not really a DIPA as advertised on here. More of a Barleywine type flavor / scent. If you like barleywines and have access, then give this one a go, you may enjoy.

Photo of UMNbeerhunter
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber on 2/28/11 into a Darkness tulip.

Pours a dark clear golden color with 2 fingers of foam that dissipates to leave moderate lacing on the glass.

Smell is a floral and citrus hops with a sweet malt backbone on the other side.

Taste is of earthy grassy hops. Malt is sweet on the backside.

Mouthfeel has little bite and it moves smooth through the pallet. Little resin leaves a pine hops taste and a little of the sweet malt.

Drinkability is good. Goes down smooth, not tough to drink at all. Could use a stronger hop profile in both taste and aroma but in the end its a solid brew.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Body is a completely transparent vibrant but slightly dark amber hue. Pours with a 2-3 finger foamy white head. Plenty of lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Nose has an emphasis of spicy hops. Grassy hops and a decent amount of caramel malt are in the background.

T- Grassy hops, a hint of spice, a hint of grapefruit, and a mild caramel malt backbone upfront. The finish is more sweet than bitter-with juicy citrus rushing through and a mild caramel malt backbone-the citrus impressions soon fade and a mildly spicy hop character. Juicy citrus and a mild bitterness linger.

M-Low to medium carbonation and a medium weight body that is quite juicy and slightly oily.

O- This is a good DIPA overall. It is not as in-your-face or bright as a lot of them-but its very juicy and has a nice balance of citrus, spice, and caramel malt with just a hint of bitterness. I'd like to try this fresh at the brew kettle-I'm sure its a bit bright when its super fresh. Its good as is though.

Photo of Sammy
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Cleveland. Orangey colour with lasting significant whte head, 3/8" inch. Very mild hoppy aroma. An orange taste, about middling mouthfeel. One imensional, slightly off-note. Its the style, a high IBU, its drinkable, but its marginal compared to what else is available.

Photo of buschbeer
3.55/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle
Served in an imperial nonic glass

A - It pours an orange/amber with two fingers of off white head.

S - It gives off a nice citrus aroma.

T - The citrus is there with a bitter finish.

M - It seems awfully thin to me.

D - It almost tastes more like an IPA rather than an imperial. I like the ABV, but it lacks the fullness of flavor and aroma that I would like to see.

Photo of dgugliuzza
4.22/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to pimpmyporter for this extra...Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a tulip.

A- Pours a beautiful orangy amber with bubbly tan head. Intense carbonation shooting from the bottom of the glass. Sticky lacing is rampant.

S- Smells of sweet piney hops. Loads of honey and fresh grapefruit. Fruity esters resonate in the nostrils. Very fresh and inviting.

T- Bitter hops up front followed by a slightly sweet honey finish. Lots of fresh grapefruit. Nice malt balance so that the hops do not overpower the palate.

M- Medium-bodied and insanely smooth. Not overly carbonated.

D- Awesome for an imperial ipa. So smooth and balanced. The 9% abv is a non factor. One of the more surprisingly great ipa's iv'e tried

Photo of TheHoppiest
4.47/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into an oversized snifter. I've had this in tap before at the brew kettle, and I've brewed their home-brew version of this in their brewery, so I'm curious to see how their bottled version compares to mine.

Pours a clear amber with a soapy white head. The clarity of the beer clearly indicates it has been filtered.

Has a wonderful hoppy nose, full of pine and white grapefruit. There's a subtle sweetness lying underneath the string hop aroma.

Has a spicy, peppery start, slightly sweet and warm, ending with a bracing bitter bite that leaves a warm trail down the throat and into the belly. Very pleasing tasting, this is not quite as warm, sweet or mellow as it is on tap.

Medium bodied, this beer leaves the mouth feeling bitter and dry.

This is an excellent brew, I definitely recommend you try this if you get the chance.

Photo of SaCkErZ9
2.85/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

No freshness dating. Poured from a 22oz bottle into a fluted pint glass with the designation that this glass was from, or should be filled only with Harpoon IPA. Pours very clear with a mostly white head of about one finger in size. A good dose of lacing clings to the glass.

Aroma is fairly weak for a Double IPA. Super earthy. This seems like an English IPA if you ask me. I know the bottle says "Simcoe through and through", but unless this is an older bottle, I get nothing but wet soil, slightly sweaty socks, and a touch of biscuit. Caramel malts play a pivotal role as the beer warms, giving me a not-so-warm feeling about this one.

Flavor is similarly English. Fairly sweet up front with minimal hop kick in the back. Sticky and nearly cloying with loads of caramel malts. Slightly fruity.

Although Brew Kettle says they hop this with Simcoe, I have the strictest confidence that this bottle is either out of date or the beer suffers from underhopping and "English masking". I didnt particularly like this one either; rather sweet. If one wants real Simcoe flavor, try Double Simcoe from Weyerbacher. The bottle asserts this beer has 90IBU. I object, your honor! If only the brewery would date their goddamn beers. A real shame.

Photo of AwYeh
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This tasting poured from a 22oz bomber into a 12oz snifter; no freshness date on bottle, though I would expect it to be 1-1.5 months old.

A: A beautiful beer; pours a crystal clear golden-amber color with a finger of foamy white head. Most of the head stays for the full glass, there's tons of lacing, and carbonation bubbles never stop flowing.

S: Sweet caramel and bready malts balance nicely with pine, floral, and citrus hops. None in particular really stand out, but all are present.

T/M: Sweet and hoppy- as this warms the sweet flavors really come out in perfect balance with the hop bitterness. More caramel, and almost a honey flavor; grapefruit, pineapple, and floral hops. Dry finish, with just a bit of lingering hop flavor. Medium body, well carbonated; smooth with just a bit of lingering stickiness. And, as a note, I assumed this was ~7.5% alcohol before I saw the 9.5 number at the top of the page. Completely undetectable.

D: A very drinkable beer; if The Brew Kettle had larger distribution this is a beer you would hear about often. Holds its own against some of the bigger-name DIPAs (Hopslam, Double Trouble, etc.), I would love to see a blind taste test between this and those. And, at $6 or less a bomber, I'll be picking this up again.

Photo of zimmerbloke
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Split a bomber and poured into standard shaker pint.

A: Two-inch off-white head tops a brightly translucent golden body. Solid head retention and a little bit of lacing.

S: Strong floral hop aroma with a mild malt sweetness backbone. Some citrus hop notes hints as well.

T: More citrus flavors in the flavor profile with a well balanced sweetness. Oily hops dominate malt profile, which is predominately very lightly roasted caramel; fades to a pretty abrasive bitterness. No real notes of alcohol.

M: Strong carbonation and very clean mouthfeel. No coating or cloying oily/sweet notes, which I appreciate.

D: The bitterness was a bit too strong on the aftertaste, which hurt the general drinkability. That being said, it did a lot of things right and was 90% to where I want a DIPA to be.

Photo of jrallen34
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Barrel and the Bottle...Dark clearish orange, good light tan head, not much of note...The aroma is strong, lots of pine resin hops, oily a little citrus, but could be more balanced...The taste is slightly better, pine resin is the main player again but its got some citrus and caramel notes to help out. The finish to bitter though so its a little tough to drink.

Decent DIPA but not knocking my socks off. Hides the alcohol well but not very drinkable.

Photo of TexIndy
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 650ml bottle into a tulip glass. No dating info so not sure how fresh. Was a slightly hazy light amber color with good carbonation from the etching. Had a good sized head that slowly settled into a thick collar and foam cap. Good sheeting with lots sticking.

The aroma was citric and pine hops with good mango presence over a solid malt base. Bitter. While the aroma was solid, the taste was much more subdued and watery. The moderately bitter hops lead the way with less of the mango showing up. The malt is there but way down the list. Sorta one-dimensional and watery. Mouthfeel was watery with good carbonation.

Overall, I was disappointed in this one especially after getting a friend's recommendation on it and after reading some good reviews. Not sure if aged bottled since they didn't date it or if this is just the way it is. It runs in the middle of the crowded ADIPA pack for me. Worth trying for sure. Not avail here in TX so shipped back from my Dayton trip. Rotation - good but worth shipping again. If avail near me, I'd definitely try one more time if I knew it was fresh. Other than that maybe a rare purchase [RS;RS]

Photo of kellyst
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle it's an attractive copper color with light white head which quickly dissipates. Nice lacing. There is a medium aroma of tropical fruits and a whiff of pine. Not much aroma comes from the malts. Flavor is dominated by citrus and grapefruit. There is some pale malt sweetness in the background with a touch a caramel malt flavor. Bittering, flavor, and aroma hops are well balanced. The finish is pretty dry and mouthfeel is good for the style. A good DIPA, but not great.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle thanks to jampics2. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a moderate golden coper color with a white head. Some carbonation is visible. A bit of lacing. The nose brings citrus, tropical, and grassy hop notes as well as a bit of light grain. The taste isn't nearly as hoppy as the nose would suggest, and is quite boozy underneath the hops and accompanying bitterness. Mouthfeel is boozy, for sure. Drinkability is okay. Nice nose with a good flavor profile, but overall just way too boozy.

Photo of SykDoc
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this courtesy of in person trade at DLD and stored, but cannot remember person's name. Much thank and looking forward to future trades.

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. It pours a clear straw/copper mix forming a 1/4 inch off-white head that remains spotty throughout. Carbonation is readily visible and no sediment.

The aroma is a nice combination of caramel malty sweetness mixed with a healthy dose of citrus fruit and piney hops components.

The taste is again a blend of caramel malt sweetness combined with a more up front citrus hops with a finish of pine, which is very good.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a solid carbonation that levels the playing field of the hops. A strong pine dryness lingers with some alcohol and bitter notes.

Overall, this beer is easy to drink. The appearance is the weakest point but everything else is solid. A good option if you can get your hands on it and like hops.

Photo of jampics2
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ The Brew Kettle. Served in a 10oz snifter.

Old 21 is a beer that has been gaining a following around Cleveland lately. The beer is orange in color with some copper, amber, and yellow notes in the mix. There's just a film of a head and that hurts the score, but the color is great!

The smell is a Simcoe hop lovers dream come true. Peach and pine and a touch of catty scents come out of the glass, but, while the beer is a touch too cold, it's just too subdued. I'm assuming this beer is fresh since it's on tap at the source. But it's just not as big in the nose as I'd like.

Peach and pine from the nose carry into the taste along with juicy grapefruit. The malt is sweet, adding just a bit of pale sugary goodness. The flavor is much more powerful than the smell. It almost reminds me of Snapple peach tea :)

The mouthfeel is very good for this beer. Medium body with perfect carbonation, adding just enough bubbles to keep the beer feeling fresh and not sticky. There is some medium bitterness that lingers in the finish. This beer has great flavors but could use more expressiveness. I've had a batch or two that were just a bit more popping, but, even in the state reflected in the snifter in front of me, this is a beer hop heads should seek out. With just water, simcoe, pale malt, and yeast, this beer has a huge amount of depth. Beware of old bottles, go tap on this one!! It's certainly deserving of its recent buzz, head down to Old 21 and grab a glass straight from the source.

Photo of Bonis
4.3/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A nice deep orange, almost clear as water. Not much head, a little lace. Least impressive aspect of this beer, IMO.

S - Very nice. Intense aroma of pineapple with hints of mango and other tropical fruits. A nice mesh of citrus and pine hops, not surprising as this is brewed with Simcoe. A touch of caramel malt makes it's way in the aroma occasionally, but the hops are big here.

T - Follows the smell. Thick and sweet, bitter and hoppy. This is a pretty bitter beer, but not too much for me. Seemed to be nicely balanced with a healthy dose of malts adding to the sweetness in this one. A banging bitterness lingers in the mouth, but not overwhelming... Almost spot on.

M - Sticky and bitter alcohol, but crisp and smooth like an IPA.

D - Drinks good for an IIPA, wouldn't want more than a pint of this in a night, however.

Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber shared with Bonis.

A - A crystal dark orange that's bordering on sienna.

S - Fruity, mango and pineapple come up front with some citrus and dank resin following.

T - Lots of that fruit and resin. Such a hop burst with only the Simcoe in the hop bill. There is a malty sweetness which balances this beer without making it overly syrupy.

M - Pleasantly coats the mouth with a tingling layer of bitterness that lingers for a while. Slick and clean.

D - I could kill a few of these, but then I'd be pretty drunk. Nice.

Photo of palmdalethriller
4.43/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

What a pleasant surprise! Had this beer in the middle of a very long road trip and wasn't expecting to have a first-rate DIPA in Ohio, but this was great.

The grassy and floral hop character is the dominant flavor, but it is nicely balanced with a rich, carmely malt backbone. I thoroughly enjoyed this beer.

Photo of btorsdog
4.83/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Use to live right off of 21 so this stikes home for me, Any way ... What a pleasant brew. Right on for the style and very well crafted. Brew Kettle did an outstanding job balancing everything out nicely ang still leaving a complexity that keeps you wanting more and more. If ya see it grab it sure is a tasty treet!

Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bomber from Vintage Estate. I've gotta get to the brewpub on my next trip...

A: The DIPA is an amber color, like dried brown leaves in the fall. At times radiant, the ale doesn't give up its translucence. A finger plus of off-white head laces in thick patches about a finger below the mouth of my glass.

S: The nose is medicinal and oily, excess pine is soft but definitely present. The more I linger, the more resiny and citrusy the aromas get. A very tempting sniff.

T: A good dose of Simcoe hops but an equally strong caramel presence, all good things are about balance after all. The simcoe grabs hold early, resiny with pine and citrus kick. For a DIPA, the hops aren't too concentrated. Instead they carry the ale without fuss. Check that, there is a hint of boozy heat near the end of each sip but it is easy to overlook. Despite that hiccup, I'm a fan of this ale.

M: The mouthfeel is hop driven but it isn't prickly and hot. The hops are at their most resiny, smoothing out the ale considerably. But they are strong and leave their mark.

D: More, please! The third pale ale incarnation from The Brew Kettle that I've really enjoyed. A strong DIPA any way you look at it.

Photo of sixerofelixir
3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Draft sampled at The Brew Kettle in Strongsville, OH. Review from notes.

Super clear light orange. Head retains OK. Huge, cony hop flavor. Taste is very crisp, but with a surprisingly smooth finish. A bit warm and alcoholic on the end, but all in all a very nice brew.

Photo of squaremile
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now how about this for the surprise beer of 2010 for me? Pours your standard imperial IPA orange with a respectable head. Nose could benefit from some dry hopping but has some hop presence in the form of pine. Taste is piney bitterness up front, followed by an pleasantly understated sweet malt and yeast combo, with a nice bitter finish. Like a lot of midwest and east coast IIPAs they are bitter rather than hoppy, but this one does it just the right doses.

Old 21 Imperial IPA from The Brew Kettle Taproom & Smokehouse / Production Works
87 out of 100 based on 369 ratings.