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Evil Cousin | Heretic Brewing Company

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106 Reviews
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Evil CousinEvil Cousin

Brewed by:
Heretic Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by billshmeinke on 09-09-2011

User Reviews
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Reviews: 106 | Ratings: 463
Photo of Fatehunter
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%

Pours a thin head on a darker straw colored body.
The aroma is pine and grapefruit.
The taste is big pine, lemon and grapefruit bitter with great balance.
The texture is fairly soft with moderate carbonation

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Photo of Celtics17
4/5  rDev +3.9%

I got this bottle knowing it was bottled 7 months ago. The malt has taken over. I will review this beer again with a fresher date. Overall it could be worse. I get a slight orange juice feel, and taste.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.25/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a stemless wine glass.

a- transparent orange, almost has a pinkish hue to it, very soft. Thin head gone quick, oily. Spotty lace if at all.

s- sweet piny hop...soft alcoholic citrus.

t/m/o- fairly light bodied, but on the boozy side. Watery pine cone hop flavors. Not sure of the age on the bottle. Ok beer, but in a world of amazing IPAs and IIPAs why drink an ok one?

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Photo of gourmet_beer
3.39/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Hoppy, Citrus, Pine, Cloudy, Dry, Bright. If you are looking for a strong IPA then you should give this a try. I wish it had more nose but the taste makes up for it. It has a light and small white head that doesn't last for long. The first thing you get is the pine, almost a sap flavor which transfers to a bitter citrus taste My burbs kind of taste fruity, like plum or peach which is nice.

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Photo of heymikew
4.44/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25


I'm always trying new brews. It seems like every brewer makes an IPA (or DIPA or IPA3 or some other hoppy thing) these days and I've had a lot of "good" ones.
This one is a standout, one of the best DIPAs I've had in a while. Hoppy, dank & heady.

Pours out as a cloudy amber orange. Has nice upfront fruity/earthy-dank aromas with a hint of the malts.
The massive hop additions are noticeable in the density of the mouthfeel. Smooth, and almost creamy.

Intense hop forward flavor. Resinous pine, with a bit of fruit . The alcohol is not evident.

A bit too easy drinking for its abv... best not to have too many on hand....

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Photo of ESkirv
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought at City Beer Store in SF about a month ago. Beer is pretty in a glass...a nice honey color with a sudsy white head. The smell isn't particularly strong but it has a nice piney profile. The taste is pleasing...smooth & citrusy, & the hops do stand out. Good overall flavor but like the smell not real distinct. Good mouthfeel, and at an for an 8% beer it drinks easy for the full 22 ounces. Would get again if it were readily available in Indy...unfortunately it's not.

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Photo of SavvyStudent
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: 50% transparency that pours with a golden, honey color
S: A pine cone with some fresh grass and lemon
T: Starts with the green taste but has a sour yeast flavor that stays on the palate after initial drink.
M: Medium-heavy
O: strong presence in front and appearance but couldn't get over the sour flavor this leaves behind after initial drink.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Clear orange body. Nice white head. Thin collar and a single surface wisp.

Smell - Pine and grapefruit. An herbal component too. Toasty malt.

Taste - Grapefruit hops. Less of the herbal character. A little grassy, though. Sweet caramel. Toasty malts. Finishes musty and bitter.

Mouthfeel - Musty and bitter. Kinda sweet, but not too bad.

Overall - Less good as it warms. Too toasty.

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Photo of jj139
4.52/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On Tap at the Brewery

A - Very nice light copperish orange with an egg shell one finger head. Head disappears quickly and the lacing is long lasting. Pretty good carbonation

S - Plenty going on here with grapefruit, citrus, floral notes, pine, and sweet malt. There are also some "dank" elements going on in there which is very cool indeed. Reminds one of..of..of... I forgot what I was going to say ;-)

T - Big Hoppy flavors right up front, which are slightly tempered by the citrus and malt. Finish is bitter hops. Even though this is stockpiled with hops, it still feels balanced.

M - Full flavor with a slight, slight interesting oiliness to it. Pretty decent carbonation but that works perfectly on the finish to help round out the huge hops.

O - A real winner here, this brew will be a regular of mine. Outstanding beer.

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Photo of Matt_Schlamann
4.94/5  rDev +28.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer deserves to be in the top 250 (In my opinion).
Appearance is nuclear orange, gorgeous orangy yellow.
Smell is very very faint, not much aroma on this one but a slight hoppy, slight dankness from it.
Taste is a citrus/hop bomb. So well-balanced and just a treat to drink. Can't say anything bad about this taste.
Mouthfeel is just like you started. Normal. It's like it came, it made you weak at the knees, then cleaned up after itself. Can't'get over the lack of aroma, burst of taste and flavor, and lack of significant mouth feel change. Bravo.
Overall: Definately "Dangerously Drinkable". This is instantly one of my favorites. "Would be willing to do a blind taste test with Pliny"

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Photo of Slatetank
4.57/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up at Whole Foods in Fremont, enjoyed chilled in a 1/2 pint, bomber shared with tenderbranson69.

The color is hazed golden with amber hues and thick off white head with fine bead. The smell is great, lots of tropical fruit with a citrus aroma reminding me of grapefruit and tangelo with slight dank herbal aspect with almost no alcohol inthe nose - pretty full on high alpha american hop smell. The feel is great -it is moderately carbonated and by the resinous texture you can sense they packed a lot of hops and dry hopped it well with moderate bitterness and mostly dry finish.

The flavor is great -way exceeded my expecations I sampled this side by side with 3 other Imperial IPA's sipping each and this was just a better tasting beer- lots of citrus and tangy tropical fruit juiciness but very mild astringency and low acidity with almost no alcohol in the taste, just pure hoppy freshness. This is a very well made beer, one of the most drinkable of the style I have had recently with subtle bitterness making it great for multiple tastes -I wish I had purchased more.

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Photo of SmashPants
3.51/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: big 650mL dark brown bottle, funky and funky, 'dark' label. A good package.

Appearance: poured into a tulip - pours a dark copper colour with visible fine carbonation. A thick one-finger head hangs about for quite a time. It slowly drops to a half-finger with good lacing.

Aroma: some usual hop aromas - big pine and citrus. A touch of biscuit malt backing. Enticing, but nothing as special as I would expect from Heretic.

Taste: plenty of citrus hops here as expected. Those malts come through too with some spices to boot. Again not exemplary but very drinkable.

Aftertaste: the hop bitterness comes through a bit stronger. Still esay drinking, which is a bit tough considering the dollar value.

Mouth feel: a moderate body with a clean crisp feel. Slightly dry on the finish.

Overall: a pleasant and easy-drinking American IPA, but one that is nowhere near as exceptional as its price tag. At AU$20 a bottle (2014), I would expect this one to rise above the rest. Though it is nice, it unfortunately doesn't do that.

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Photo of brewski09
4.84/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

22oz bomber my wife brought back to Ohio from a recent trip home to Sacramento for me to try. Poured into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter from my beer fridge after about a week of stabilization.

A - beautiful light orange with 1.5cm white to off-white head that dissipates relatively quickly with light lacing; just what i would expect from an IIPA.

S - wonderfully sweet hop aromas. floral, pine/grassy, mildly spicy and minty, just an edge of citrus that almost gets lost, but comes through more in the end. There is a bit of alcohol touched by mild malt.

T - pine and alcohol up front, followed by floral citrus and overwhelmingly hoppy, just like the aroma. I wonder if there is a small blast of rye in here because there is a small sharp peppery note throughout this beer.

M - Full, lightly oily, but not overly sugary or oily. The carbonation is maybe a touch high, but perfect to help clean this beer up on the palate and balance the residual sugars with the bitterness and preventing it from feeling too coating.

O - This is an outstanding IIPA. What I am most amazed about is that this beer is so impressive in a market that is already overrun with massive IPAs. Thank you for this beer, I will be getting more next time I am home in CA.

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Photo of andyfrancis
3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lacy, persistent off-white head on a clear pale-golden body. lots of bubbles.

Smells of piney hops, with just a hint of caramel.

A slow wave of pine across the tongue. Alcohol is well hidden and it finishes fairly clean. Some lingering citrus notes on the roof of my mouth.

For an imperial IPA, it's on the crisper, lighter side. Would pair nicely with a mild blue cheese.

Overall, pretty good. Imperial IPAs often feel like you shoved a handful of hops in your mouth, but this one is quite that aggressive. Probably won't make it a point to buy the bottle again, but I'd try it on tap if I saw it somewhere.

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Photo of magictacosinus
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 22oz bottle. Given to me as a gift with Evil Twin about 2 weeks ago. No freshness or bottling date on the bottle, nevertheless. Grrr!!

Pours a clear, amber orange color complete with a large, thickened white head. I split this (as I usually do with bombers) and ended up getting some of the remaining sediment at the bottom into my glass, which actually substantially clouded up the beer. Carbonation is barely visible within the glass, although the head lasts almost forever and leaves behind a good amount of lacing. Sticky and oily in appearance. Despite the cloudy surprise, pretty solid.

The initial aroma reveals initial fruity hoppy phenols, ranging from mangoes, oranges, and lime, but it quickly changes as it warms up. While the initial smell is quite pleasant and fruit-forward, it soon becomes replaced with a piney, dry hopped astringency nearly makes the nostrils tingle each time. There's a brief touch of toffee malts, and perhaps a bit of graininess that adds a solid backbone to all the hops, but as soon as the alcohol creeps in, it gets far stronger. They weren't joking on the label that this was "aggressively" dry hopped - it nearly numbs all of the other aspects of the beer, which is only forgivable with the resinous, fruity flavors it produces.

The flavor is immediately met with an astringent, zesty bitterness from the hops, as well a robust sticky, syrupy malty backbone. In the early stages, it appears to be a solid DIPA, but as soon the aftertaste comes around, it quickly turns out to be very astringent, almost to the point of assaulting the palate with acidic, bittered resin. The orange, grapefruit flavors are a classic profile here as far as West Coast IPAs go, and while I *should* be used to the highly astringent finish in these types of beers by now, something throws me off here. Is it too syrupy? Is the alcohol way too present, almost to the point of making this a difficult drinking experience? Not too sure, and while the hope profile is fully lively, it does throw off the other flavors. The syrupy character makes this an easy drinking experience, and the carbonation is great here - totally solved compared to Evil Twin. Flavorful, but maybe needed some pruning.

This is a pretty straightforward West Coast DIPA, but there's definitely lacking a strive for balance here, no matter how great of a job the hops are doing. Based on this beer, I know for sure that these guys might start churning more interesting things in the future if they are to expand their selection... For the price, this is a good go-to DIPA option, but only if I'm looking for one that slightly locks me in the jaw in the process.

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Photo of MNishCT77
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz. bottle purchased at Ales Unlimited in San Francisco, CA, bottled on 3/11/13, poured into a hotel style glass and drank over ~30 minutes.

A: 4.5 - amber-brown coloration, could read blurrily through, white full-finger head subdues into subtle glass lacing, moderate alcohol legs for a 8% beer

S: 4.5 - pretty dank notes all around, lots of pine and cat piss from Simcoe, I'm sure; big time DIPA

T: 4 - the taste is pretty appropriate for the aroma; on the front of the tongue, there is a slap of bitterness that has an impressive lingering quality; in the middle of the tongue, the hop-forward qualities predominate - lots of pine, drank bittnerness, which continues to linger through the entire aftertaste

M: 4.25 - big, chewy qualities c/w a DIPA; nice alcohol notes

O: 4.25 - as much as I love Jamil, this beer is only a moderate imperial IPA that doesn't live up to some of the best imperial IPAs; I was unfortunately expecting more; Avery's Maharaja and Sierra Nevada's Hoptimum have similar notes but this falls short in comparison to those beers

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Photo of brewandbbq
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

22oz non-dated bottle from Bev Mo.

Pours hazy, dark copper with a thin, whitish head that dissipated to a few whisps on the surface. A few dots of lacing if you look for it.

Aromatics lead off with stale malt, wet cardboard, and faded, piney hops. Plenty of old caramel and dusty paper.

Medium bodied with a syrupy mouthfeel. Tacky, chewy, and slickish.

Malt-forward on the palate for the style, with more cardboard and stale pine bark. Medium bitterness and alcohol barely noticeable.

Finishes with lingering cardboard, wet paper, and faded hops.

This is the reason I rarely purchase a $8.00 bottle of IPA/IIPA without a bottle date. Shame on me. This beer is old, beat, and syrupy.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.82/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber with a fading head.
Massively hoppy aroma, smells like a freshly opened bag of hops. Some pine and resinous notes too, alongside sweet clean malt.
Very hoppy flavours too, but there's a fair bit of clean malt to balance things. Very resinous, with spicy hops too. Pretty tasty stuff.
Spot on moderately high carbonation.

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Photo of Beerandboards
3.47/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, no bottled date

A - darker orange. Smaller amount of white head.

S - dank pine, some rich citrus, orange, some alcohol.

T - thick bitterness kind of takes everything over. There is a piney hop note, sappy almost. Bitter orange. Aftertaste is dominated by bitter citrus.

M - under carbonated. Oily.

O - gotta say, not great. Certainly not bad, but I the world of plentiful top notch IPAs, this one is not quite up to a snuff.

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Photo of GuzzLah
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - pours a hazy orange with a short white head. No lace. A few bubbles.

S - weak intensity for the style. Citrus, floral and mild onion/pine hops. Relatively strong malt note.

T - orange and grapefruit with some malty sweetness. Nice citrus forward flavor.

M - medium body with low-medium carbonation. Slightly oily. Low-medium citric bitter finish with a medium sustain. Tangy.

O - this is a fairly conservative DIPA that won't impress people looking for extreme examples of the style. Not dank. Not very bitter. On the sweet and malty side. However, it does have a nice flavor and it didn't have any fermentation flaws. Smooth 8% abv.

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a DFH IPA glass. Brewed 11 February 2013.

A: Light head fades quickly. The beer is a hazy amber.

S: Massive amounts of Simcoe-ish hops hit first, full of onion and sharp citrus. Underneath, there are more pleasantly fruity notes, but the main element is still earthy and bright.

T/M: Much maltier than anticipated. Sweet oranges and subtle pine don't quite prepare for the aggressively bitter endtaste and dry aftertaste. A mostly sweet/fruity taste with a hopbomb right at the end.

O: I liked this beer, but it wasn't necessarily well-constructed, and I doubt it would find wide appeal. Would have again if I didn't see anything else around.

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Photo of MacHeadBeer
4.09/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a gift, so unsure as to the price paid or value for the price.

Overall a good IPA, but a little weak for a DIPA. I was expecting something stronger in ABV and flavor with a name like Evil Cousin. But overall, a good beer that I would gladly drink again.

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Photo of Arbitrator
2.85/5  rDev -26%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Chilled bottle into a glass. From notes.

A: Pours a hazy orange body. Modest head, poor retention, some tendrils of lace.

S: Spicy with mild tropical citrus -- I specify 'mild' because I expected a billowing, pungent aroma. The bottle is only 2 months old.

T: Spicy onions with some citrus and pronounced, but not overwhelming, bitterness. It's not my favorite flavor profile in the DIPA category, but it's not awful.

M: It's a little boozy, and the spicy onion makes it more noticeable. Could use improvement.

O: Sad to say it, but at this point, there's enough local competition in the DIPA segment that an $8 bomber of just-all-right beer isn't going to cut it for me. I drank half, threw the rest out, and switched to something else. I'm pretty unlikely to pick this up again.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22-oz. bomber into a pint glass at my house on Nov. 13, 2012 (purchased at Mission Trails Market for $7.99 on Nov. 13, 2012). Caramel amber with three fingers of thick frothy white head.
Decent wet foamy retention on the top and the sides.

Smelled a nice dose of citrus hops. Got grapefruit, tangerine, lime, skunky pine and caramel (light). The skunk lingered on.

Tasted very hoppy right from the get-go. Got tangerine and grapefruit bitter hops up front with a strong bite of orange peels and alcohol lingering after. I kept waiting for the aftertaste to be good, but it never really came. Definitely missing something.

Medium body. Creamy texture. Lively (above average) carbonation. Skunky, bitter finish.

Was a bit disappointed overall, especially for the $7.99 price tag. It was missing something, came up just a tad short.

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Photo of JesseLara
4.44/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I hit the Hofbräu tonight knowing Heretic brewing was on tap for pint night. I've had the Evil Twin before and enjoyed it so I was hoping I was in for more of the same, and I was not disappointed.

Solid 1 inch head on the pour.

Aroma was solid citrus, heavy orange, some grapefruit. Nice.


Solid double IPA, hoptastic! Stuck in the back if my throat with heavy heavy pine notes.

If you like hops, you'll like Evil Cousin. Solid contender for one of my favorite hoppy beers.

Looking forward to the Torment!

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Evil Cousin from Heretic Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 106 ratings.