Apocalypse Cow - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Apocalypse CowApocalypse Cow

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471 Reviews
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Reviews: 471
Hads: 1,960
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 9.35%
Wants: 616
Gots: 291 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mdm46410 on 11-23-2008

9.5-11.0% ABV, 100 IBUs - This complex double India pale ale has an intense citrus and floral hop aroma balanced by a velvety malt body which has been augmented with lactose milk sugar. With this different take on an IPA we have brewed an ale that is both pleasing to drink and, once again, “not normal.” Cheers! June release.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 471 | Hads: 1,960
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Rick for hooking me up (again). Bottle purchased from the brewery and consumed fresh.

Apocalypse Cow is a slightly hazy beer with a light yellow-orange hue. There is an averaged sized white head that fades somewhat quickly, leaving spotty traces of lacing throughout the glass.

The scent is very similar to Dreadnaught, with hops at the forefront. I'm not sure if I could identify lactose in the aroma if this was a blind tasting. However, I can perceive it in the nose, knowing that it's there.

This is really a delicious beer and very well done. Again, I see many similarities to Dreadnaught. Apocalypse Cow has a slightly different feel and is noticeably different in the aftertaste, given the lactic aspect of this beer.

The feel is creamy and smooth, with the high alcohol percentage hidden very well. There is a slightly warming sensation in the finish, but the beer does not come across as too hot.

I plan on drinking this bomber by myself and don't foresee any issues with that. This is another terrific beer by FFF. They truly made a beer that is "not normal" with Apocalypse Cow. With many avant garde beers, the idea is fun and exciting, but the overall taste and drinkability of the beer can suffer. This is a unique beer that tastes great and is a lot of fun to drink. Cheers! (1,304 characters)

Photo of jera1350
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours into a tulip a cloudy orange that appears to glow. The head is thinner and tan but produces plenty of lace.

Immense amount of citrus fills the nose. Fresh squeezed orange juice and tangerine. Some pineapple and a floral hop scent similar to lavender.

The hops are plump, juicy and sweet. Loads of tangerine, orange and grapefruit, but not overly bitter. The malt has wheat like characteristics. The lactose is a nice sweet compliment to the hop profile. Minor noticeable alcohol.

Between medium and full bodied, this gem has q velvety smooth feel all the way through. Soft and supple.

Drinks like an IPA. Tough to set the glass down. A top notch DIPA. Highly recommend this even with the higher pricetag. (714 characters)

Photo of madelfonatree
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look - Mainly orange with yellow tint. Thick, small bubbled, slightly off white head. Good lacing. The body is hazy.

Smell - There is that strong dankness. Vanilla. Caramel. Pine. Pineapple.

Taste - The only difference in the taste is the bitterness and alcohol. A little orange and extra citrus thrown in there too.

Feel - Creamy. Milky. Small burst of carbonation but not too much.

Overall - 4.5s across the board. I need this side by side with Cimmerian to see which is my favorite Floyds DIPA (so far). I really like this beer's balance. (549 characters)

Photo of Stevem68
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poors a nice golden amber color. Has a hoppy aroma and you can definitely pick up a sweetness from the milk sugars. This translates directly to the flavor as it has a nice mouth feel of hops that are well balanced with a subtle malty finish. Definitely get the milk sugars but leaves a pleasant after taste. Really enjoyed this (327 characters)

Photo of dleigh
4.51/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was skeptical, but the lactose sweetness really works with the hoppiness to produce a beautifully sweet, creamy, hoppy IPA. Dangerously drinkable for an 11%er. (161 characters)

Photo of generalnotsew
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very milky medium coloring with a fat creamy head. Smell is very potent. Tangy, grassy, grapefruit with a touch of sweetness. The odor is very pleasant. Wowzer! That is the thickest and creamiest mouthfeel I have ever had. Taste is kind of a piney very citrusy and great bitter hoppiness. Much more hoppy bitter than a lot of people are saying. This isn't anywhere near a malt bomb DIPA like Great Lakes Monster was. Hop heads won't be let down. The lactose is slightly present in the nose and on the tongue. But it isn't off putting or overpowering. The mouthfeel is out of this world though! Unlike anything I had before. This is a must try. (643 characters)

Photo of YumYumGumGum
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Three Floyds Brewing Co. is the bomb.

A: Great looking, dark yellow body with more lacing than you can imagine from a 22oz bottle into a bar glass. Two fingers on the first glass of pure white head.

S: Very smooth hop scent, not overwhelming with bitter notes, just smoother, like a cascade-kind of dry hopping effect might have. Lots of floral which I got just before smelling the hops.

T: Great IPA, very sweet, high recommend fresh. This beer didn't need a single day more of conditioning. Pretty different as far as DIPA's go. I haven't had one that I'd compare this to. This is a great one to include in a tasting for novices, because its very easy to breakdown and the taste is wonderful and sweet.

M: Sticky! This is a ultra heavy lacing sticky beer with a small amount of sediment. Very different but enjoyable!

O: Buy this for any occasion from high gravity tastings to summer day drinking. Kind of expensive, bout $13 plus shipping, but a great surprise! Worth the cash. (985 characters)

Photo of BitterPachyderm
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber (sweet ass artwork, with no freshness) poured into the appropriate SN pint glass...not sure why the cow on the bottle only has one eye...maybe I should read a bit more into the apocalypse. I digress...

3 fingers of frothy off white head with great lacing-very sticky. Great head retention...hazy orange (almost amber) body.

Whoa! Pineapple and grapefruit assault the senses here. Massive hits of spicy and peppery hops with an underlying smell of sweet citrus. My kind of DIPA...very floral!

Sweet citrus notes up front...sweet, sweet, sweet! There is a subtle bitter finish with a small bit of vanilla, but mostly just sweet hops and spicy goodness. Complex yet simple...

Slick, oily, creamy, and smooth=perfection!

I can quaff this from this cow all day long!

I wanted to make this a complex review, but this is just a brew that you have to have for yourself. FFF has outdone themselves this time...it's almost like a mixture of Dreadnaught and Gumballhead...but what can I say, because FFF knows their hops! (1,030 characters)

Photo of JamesS
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a great deep copper color with some very nice lacing and head. Horribly deep hop scent, mostly pine, with hints of floral, and a tiny bit of malt underneath it all. Excellent taste, a wonderful pale ale; deep bitterness, good use of American pine hops (I'm guessing); it's a lot like their Alpha King, but there is a nice slight sweetness from the sugars added that make it slightly different. Goes down way too easy for a 10% beer. If you're looking for a great pale ale, 3F's Alpha King is cheaper, but this one is a great try as well. (544 characters)

Photo of sleuthdog
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2012 Vintage poured into FFF Teku glass

Appearance: Cow poured a light copper-orange color with two fingers worth of head. Head is fluffy and a great brilliant white color with very tight small bubbles. It settles quickly and leaves some nice lacing behind.

Smell: Up front there is a definite tropical fruit presence with mango, melon, pineapple, some honey. Not at all resiney in the nose to me and to be honest smells "smooth" to me. It's as if the lactose milk sugar has thrown in a very unique twist here even in the nose.

Taste: Oh WOW I think I just found my favorite DIPA to date! I am getting the orange-tangerine, grapefruit, peach, melon, and mango. Just a ton of citrus and tropical notes but this is followed up by an awesome caramel and honey sweetness in the backbone that smoothes everything and makes this highly drinkable in a dangerous way! Alcohol is so well hidden I can't believe this is 11%.

Mouthfeel: Like I've said a couple times before this is one smooth DIPA and I'm thoroughly enjoying it! Hops are most definitely there but not in an in your face way. Carbonation is moderate and adds a slight prick on the tongue.

Overall: Well what more can I say? Simply amazingly well done FFF! Everything works in this beer and I really can not find anything wrong with it. Just plain stellar! (1,320 characters)

Photo of WankelEngine
4.52/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a tulip glass

A: Pours a hazy orange color. A fairly vigorous pour yields a light tan head of one finger which dissipates quickly to form a small circle of foam around the glass. There is light lacing and some small visible bubbles.

S: Smells strongly of tropical fruits. Pineapple and orange blossoms. There is also a notable undertone of grass cuttings and some light malt.

T: Tastes strongly of tropical fruits. Pineapple and citrus are key again as they are in the smell. There are also herbal notes from the hops and well as the taste of grass cuttings. As I savor, the bitterness from the herbal notes grows but the fruit flavors don’t fade. It peaks as a fantastically bitter and fruity combination which fades into a relatively short aftertaste which finishes cleanly.

M: Absolutely fantastic. Unlike many other strong IPAs and DIPAs, there is no oily sensation at all. It is clean, smooth and creamy with the perfect level of carbonation.

O: A great offering by FFF. Aside from being a very solid DIPA, the mouthfeel is outstanding. Also, the alcohol is hardly discernable making this brew incredibly drinkable. The lactose milk sugar not only makes the mouthfeel creamy, but it imparts a distinct sweetness to the brew. (1,271 characters)

Photo of Jammies
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- golden amber with two inches of foam. Phenomenal retention.

S- some grassy notes but a little sweet and citrusy

T- incredibly smooth. Terrific balance of hops. Sweet.

M- very smooth definitely hoppy, leaves the mouth dry.

O- Absolutely great beer. 3F rarely disappoints. (277 characters)

Photo of NewGeneric
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a hazy gold color with 2 fingers of white foam that fades slowly, leaving tons of sticky lacing everywhere. Wow.

S: Floral, citrusy hops.

T: Floral, citrusy hops. Pine, too. Mild toffee backbone. And cream.

M: Wow. Incredibly smooth and creamy. Bitterness is very nice too.

D: Would drink tons of it if it were more available. I might have to brew my own :) (398 characters)

Photo of Gushue3
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Nice, almost 2 finger head that has great retention. Body is a hazy orange thats a little darker amber in the center. Head is still there and some serious lacing is left around the glass. can we say pants tent?

S- Pine and bitter citrus, like white grapefruit. There's absolutely a malt presence in there as well as some earthiness. Smells more of a bitter citrus than fruity.

T- Much like the nose. Big wet taste upfront of bitter hops that has a very slight sweetness in there. The malt shows up toward the finish. Excellent taste in this one. The big bitterness I'm looking for with some light fruity taste.

M- Medium mouthfeel with a medium to higher amount of carbonation. Feels how it should.

O- This beer is serious. The appearance was almost a 5 and the flavor is insane. Another well made DIPA from FFF! (821 characters)

Photo of woosterbill
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewpub into a Goblet.

A: Clear, slightly reddish pale amber body under a finger of fine off-white foam. Good retention for the strength, and solid lacing. Stunning DIPA.

S: Candied grapefruit, plain and simple: big citrus hops mixed with prominent (and enjoyable, non-cloying) caramel malt. Delightful.

T: Opens with big, juicy, bitter grapefruit hops, followed by some malt sweetness, and finished with huge bitterness and some of booze. I wish this were the 9.5% listed on BA instead of the 11% claimed by the chalkboard, as the alcohol presence is the only drawback to this delicious beer.

M: Creamy, full body with lots of carbonation that starts prickly but smooths out beautifully. Very nice.

O: When I first had this beer during my first visit to the brewpub two summers ago, it was my favorite beer of all time. Two years of solid beer geekery later, and it's still pretty high on the list - I've certainly had a good number of beers I prefer, but there's just something about how perfectly the juicy, citrusy hops go with the malt and lactose sweetness. Even as an avowed lover of hop-centric, "West Coast" style DIPAs, I can't get over how damn delicious every sip of this beer is. This is by far my favorite of the three FFF DIPAs, and is certainly among my top 5 favorite examples of the style.

Cheers! (1,335 characters)

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into Bruery tulip, picked up at Chuck's in Bowling Green, KY.

Pours a beautiful glowing apricot - sort of a bright copper with an orange tint to it. Very thin off-whit head on top settles into nothing but some scattered bubbles, with not much in the way of lacing or retention. Beautiful color, but the head could certainly use some work.

Nose is near perfect. Massive, sweet, rich, juicy tropical fruit (mainly pineapple, tangerine - almost candied, largely due to the alcohol), big, bold alcohol presence, bit of a citrus rind bite, and just enough pine to rein this one back in when you think the rich fruit notes are just going to run crazy - absolutely fantastic. Everything about it is massive and perfect.

Taste is excellent as well. Huge caramel notes provide a sweetness that's just enveloped by the waves of pineapple and orange, grapefruit rind, finishing with a lingering piny bitterness that sits firmly on the tongue. Intensely sweet, juicy-fruit wrapped in bitter pine, with a long, full finish that provides probably the only hint of lactose that I get from this one, and it's faint. Between this and Apocalypse Cow, I think 3F have absolutely mastered this style. My hat's off to them.

Mouthfeel is full bodied, big, sharp carbonation is still held in check by how chewy this one is. Maybe a bit sticky (could definitely feel it on my lips), but not so much as to be a real detriment, and less alcohol burn than expected. Finish is very long, lingering bitterness is fairly all things considered. Very well done.

Drinkability is good. Still, the alcohol is in full force in this one, and the hugeness of both the hops blast and the balancing sweetness means this score can only go so high. Still, given the style and how tasty it is, above average for me.

Very nice beer, and yet another in a long list of positive impressions from 3F. These guys really know their shit. (1,906 characters)

Photo of JohnnyChicago
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Split a 22oz bomber with the girlfriend; poured into oversized wine glasses.

A: Pours a clear golden with a fluffy white head. Smooth lacing and lasting head.

S: Nose is clean and fruity. Orange/pineapple hops with a milkshake sweetness.

T: There is no "opening, middle and finish" for this beer. The flavours hit you all at once and mix and meld perfectly from start to finish. Tropical fruits and sweetness. It has the distinct flavour of an orange cream smoothie. Just incredible delicious and complex.

D: Alcohol is hidden and the beer is very well balanced, If only this came in sixers (I can dream right?) Mouthfeel is perfectly heavy and smooth.

Overall: This is honestly one of the best DIPAs I've ever had. The West Coast/East Coast debate forced you to choose between bruising bitterness or cloying sweetness. That's fine; being extreme is as American as apple pie. This is something else, though; a rare DIPA with perfect balance. It's sweet, no doubt, but it always has that strong, spicy hop presence that you feel prickling on your tongue. True to style and at the same time, unlike any other brew. Damn you FFF for making these so expensive. Even at 11 bucks, I just have to buy another. It's just that good. Another home run from FFF! (1,255 characters)

Photo of Durtdiggler
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 220z bomber into La Chouffe snifter glass. Purchased at brew pub 1 week ago.

Light orange and cloudy with 2 finger head. Retention is nice, sticks to glass.

Much more citrus rind overtones than pine and floral. Very complex orange, pineapple with some honey. Slightly sweet, soft. Big malt backbone and not too sweet.

This is the most balanced dipa I've tasted. The hops, the sweetness or bread character doesn't overwhelm each other.

Mouthfeel is by far the best I have noticed. So soft, creamy. Bitterness lingers just a bit on your tongue. It goes down fast for a beer of this profile. So drinkable. Despite the IBUs, don't notice it as much.

Overall, beer is brilliant. Different take then the Dreadnaught or Arctic Panzer Wolf. Not better/less but different. The lactic sugar balances the flavor more, softens it and provides more citrus overtones. I love 3Fs. (886 characters)

Photo of notchucknorris
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy burnt orange color with a creamy eggshell colored head.

S: Mango, candied orange, 50/50 bar, grapefruit and some citrus hops. Really nice.

T: Not everyone I tasted this with was crazy about it but I loved it. Tangerine and apricot flavors upfront with a slight hit of peppery citrus hops in the middle. Huge caramel malt and mango on the finish. The mouthfeel is unbelievably creamy. I wasn't sure the lactose would do it for me in a DIPA, but this was amazing. (472 characters)

Photo of VncentLIFE
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Interesting concept from 3Floyds. On tap at 4th Street Cafe in Columbus.

The body is a bit darker than usual with a smaller than average head. The smell is loaded with a balance of fruit and pine with a good amount of resinous flavors as well. The taste has the same quality as Blackheart, but different. Blackheart has oak, but this has Lactose. The lactose works wonders balancing out what would normally be a overly bitter resinous beer, and magically you get a very creamy balanced slightly fruity and resinous IPA that drinks WAY below the 11%. (550 characters)

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.55/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: A very vibrant, only slightly hazy tangerine and golden color. An modest ivory colored head forms in the glass - not a huge head, but the head lingers, especially considering the ABV, and nice lacing absolutely coats the glass.

Smell: Floral and juicy grapefruit hop aroma erupt out of the bottle as it opens. Wow, what a great primer that already has my mouth watering. Not much malt enters the nose, but the lactose provides an interesting sweetness that I really enjoy.

Taste: Very sweet from the lactose and some light maltiness to start. Slightly spicy floral hops enter the picture softly, as they are wont to do, with the full force of the tangerine, apricot, mango, and grapefruit hops storming in right after. The lactose seems to cause the sweetness to linger, so the finish is sweet, juicy, and a bit bitter.

Mouthfeel: The body is deceptively full, given the color and the juicy hop flavor. The carbonation is creamy and does not allow for any crispness, but it is quite smooth.

Drinkability: I was absolutely blown away by this beer. Even with a bit of time since this was released, the hops still pop, and the alcohol has faded to obscurity in the taste. (1,228 characters)

Photo of wagenvolks
4.56/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many, many thanks to mikeyv35 for the generous extra. 22oz bottle into a New Belgium goblet.

The pour presents a murky, peach-colored brew with a scant cap of cappuccino foam. Aroma positively bursts with tropical fruit: pineapple, mango, papaya, sugarcane, apricot. It's a hophead's delight, and I am reveling in it.

The flavor announces that the hops have taken over, and my tastebuds welcome the coming Apocalypse. Big, juicy hop cones spray sap and resin across the palate, palpable in their greenery but not overwhelmingly bitter. The fruitiness is not lost either, as it accentuates a slick backdrop of caramel & toffee malts. Mouthfeel borders on burdensome, but blends the booziness well with a biting carbonation level and behemoth body. This may well be one of my new favorite Double IPA's. Highly recommended. (822 characters)

Photo of roger617
4.56/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into snifter

A: 4.25 Pours bright golden with 1 finger of head. Great lacing.
S: 4.5 Powerful hop aroma. Nothing short of what I'd expect from 3F with this style.
T: 4.75 Amazing flavor profile. Great hop flavor balanced with a strong bitter sweet malt. The lactose is present, but by no means dominant.
M: 4.25 Silky smooth, well carbed.
O: 4.5 3F never ceases to amaze me. This is one delicious beer that I would recommend to any fan of the style. (468 characters)

Photo of blackearth
4.57/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased from the Blatz Beer Cave in downtown Milwaukee. Poured a clear, bright golden body with a white head. Aroma was piney -- smelled like Christmas even -- with hints of sugar. Mouthfeel was full bodied with medium carbonation to keep it on the smooth side. Good malt sweetness with a little oak, balanced with a more subtle hops approach that lasted far beyond the finish. No detection of alcohol in the finish. This beer was pretty much amazing. (453 characters)

Photo of Lemke10
4.57/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This pours a hazy, golden orange color with a thick foamy head. The aroma is mild but has a decent aroma of hops. The taste is big, bold, and delicious. The texture is smooth, milky but has quite the bite when it comes to hops. This is perhaps one the best beers I’ve had from Three Floyds. (292 characters)

Apocalypse Cow from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 471 ratings.