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Mass Rising - Jack's Abby Brewing

Not Rated.
Mass RisingMass Rising

Educational use only; do not reuse.

181 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 181
Hads: 1,421
Avg: 4.23
pDev: 22.22%
Wants: 87
Gots: 215 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Jack's Abby Brewing visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: rudzud on 09-07-2013

In the spirit of our local history we are revolting against the status quo. We are writing our own story by fueling the fire surrounding extra hoppy beers. We infuse Mass Rising with increasing amounts of American hops during the kettle, hopbock and dry hopping processes. Together, we have taken a journey to redefine the term 'lager.'
IBUs 100 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 181 | Hads: 1,421
Photo of predikit
2.75/5  rDev -35%

Pours a bright gold with a rather foamy head that leaves plenty of lacing.

Smells of grapefruit, and some apple. Standard hop fare here.

This beer bites back, citrus on the front, bitter finish. Not getting too much by way of complexities.

Medium body, crisp exit.

Not my kind of brew, but one of the better IPLs I've had.

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Photo of mynie
3.18/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was described to me as an East Coast Humulus, so of course I had to give it a try.

N-not quite. While Humulus retains just enough crispness to clearly differentiate itself from a double IPA, the back end of JA's second anniversary strays into the harsh medicinal nodes that mar most iterations of this difficult style. Thankfully the front end is still smooth and pleasant and the back-end never gets painfully sharp, but it comes too close for my liking.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.28/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Very pale yellow orange. Small white head. Medium collar.

Smell - Generic citrusy hops. Pilsner malt behind it. Doesn't smell like a whole lot.

Taste - Crisp citrus hop flavor. Aggressively bitter. Pilsner malt flavor. Grassy bitterness lingers in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium light body. Well carbonated. Very bitter.

Overall - The hop flavor isn't very distinct. The malt flavor is still interesting though.

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Photo of Brad007
3.57/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Somehow, I missed this when I first starting purchasing Jack's Abby products.

Pours a yellowish-blond color with a thick, frothy white head into my glass.

Lots of pine and perhaps citrus notes in the nose. Crisp and malty. At 8%, it's not something to laugh at.

Pine and grapefruit upfront, followed by sweet, biscuity malt.

If you'll notice, the texture of the beer changes towards the back of the throat. After swallowing, there's a good dose of alcohol heat.

A delicious take on a double pilsner. To make this beer REALLY stand out, I'd love to see a continuation of the texture, which was "pillowy" before the alcohol heat kicked in.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.58/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into SN hop glass. Thanks again AutumnBeerLove!

A: Pours a clear straw golden with a huge, dense, and fluffy off-white head that took forever to fade thick film that left tons of sticky, wispy lacing down the glass.
S: Clean notes of bready malt mix well with hoppy scents of citrus and fruit nectar.
T: I get hoppy notes of citrus rind, lemon grass, lager yeast in the finish, bitter pine sap, and sourdough bread in the aftertaste. There’s a splash of sweet honey and flower nectar, as well a light touch of herbal spice.
M: Medium body, even carbonation, fairly smooth but there’s a touch of alcohol in the finish. Fairly refreshing.
O: I was underwhelmed by this one. It was good and definitely drinkable, but it wasn’t the best of the few other hoppy lagers I’ve had from JA.

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Photo of brentk56
3.63/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Quite a bit of foam billows on top of the golden liquid; the retention and lacing action are great but the liquid is a bit out of reach on the first few sips

Smell: Doughy, with an herbal and lemony twist

Taste: Doughy, up front, with a touch of sugary malt; in the middle, the 100 IBUs arrive with force, bringing a grassy and pithy element, with lemon, green apple and tropical fruit flavors; the finish is a bit soapy and herbaceous

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate, but crisp, carbonation

Overall: I am a fan of this brewery but I am going against the grain on this beer as it had a number of elements that I didn't particularly like

Thanks, mj0126, for the opportunity

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Photo of breadwinner
3.71/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It's a step up from the harsh imbalance of Kiwi, but I still think it doesn't work as well as Hoponious. The lager yeast/heavy hopping combo creates a shrill effect. Losing hold of the malt character isn't super surprising for the style, but without it here the shrillness is especially stark. Wouldn't reach for this, deferring instead to the aforementioned Hoponious or another more balanced option from JA.

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Photo of popery
3.72/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to jlindros. Pours a bright yellow gold color. It's quite transparent. There's some sediment at the bottom of the bottle, but a gentle-ish pour didn't disturb it and cloud things up. Big puffy white head. Lots of lacing. Big clumps on the walls of the glass. Excellent retention. Floral and citric hop aroma. Pale bready malt sweetness. Some peach, white grape, mango. It's all a bit mild, though, and really could be juicier. Surprisingly little lager yeastiness. Taste is similar. Some lemon, peach, grass, pine. Again, fairly mild. Moderate bitterness. Very clean. Some pale malt sweetness, doughy sugars. Little bit of solvent bitterness in the finish. Light and crisp, particularly for the abv. Pretty good beer.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.73/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale yellow with a white soapy froth that leaves a sheet of lacing of the glass. The aroma is hoppy but also with gassy, bready lager notes. Herb, bathroom, and lemon scent.

The brew is bready and also quite bitter with an earthy, dry hop flavor. A one two punch of lager sweet and hop carnage, Bitter, piney, herbal, bready and smooth. No trace of 8% alcohol really in the taste,

Overall, this is a nice full bodied double IPL with ample hop flavor. Not the most complex, but great for what it is.

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Photo of logicalparadox
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%

A: This head. Blows my mind! Thick pillow of sea foam atop a hazy, pale straw liquid. This is what beer should look like! The type of lacing you'd kill for and the head just won't die!

S: Grassy and herbal, with some light grapefruit and citrus, Smells dry and intense.

T: Surprisingly bitter and hoppy, but good. Lemon ring, grape fruit and grassy notes, with lots of pith and some herbal elements like marjoram and, even a hint of lavender. Mildly astringent.

M: Medium body with soft carbonation, the mouth-feel is sturdy, yet gentle.

Overall, a little bitter for my palette. Somewhat astringent and the herbals are a tad medicinal, but, sometimes you need your medicine! I'm impressed that this is a lager.

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Photo of joe1510
3.78/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz Bottle

A big thanks to Mark for surprising me with this bottle! Mass Rising glugs from the bottle to glass straw golden but when filling a larger area takes a peach hue with moderate lace. A big, billowing, purely white head grows to two fingers in height and as it recedes looks like someone jammed cotton balls in the glass. Impressive webbed lacing coats the glass.

A hefty dose of pilsner malt has wrapped itself around handfuls of American hops. The pilsner malt is fairly sweet with cereal graininess. A touch of clean booze in the middle actually sharpens up the hop fruitiness nicely. Tangerine, a touch of grapefruit, a squeeze of berries, and orange marmalade all play their role.

Citrus hits immediately. Orange and grapefruit lead the way, both pithy and sweet. Mid palate that sweet pilsner malt stands up while a touch of tangerine pushes through. The grapefruit adds a nice kick of lingering bitterness on the swallow. The best part of this beer is the swallow. Slightly sweet pilsner malt combines with the pithy citrus bitterness to produce a bright, flavorful finish.

Sweetness tends to linger on the palate. There's a nice frothiness to the larger than moderate body that cuts through a touch of the sweetness. Bitterness is moderate and lingers long after each sip. A soft, clean alcohol dryness cleans up the finish eventually.

Mass Rising is a solid beer. The sweetness is a little higher than I'd like but besides that it's an interesting combination of robust pilsner and heavy hopping. I would happily give a couple more of these a try in the future. Thanks again, Mark!

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Photo of DIM
3.79/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

a: Cloudy straw colored yellow; poured with a big sticky head.

s: Subdued citrus and some pine; some bready malt.

t: Tastes good but maybe a bit long in the tooth. Muddled, earthy, faintly citrusy hops. Moderate bready sweetness.

m: Light body and crisp carbonation.

o: Very good for sure, butI wish I would have tried this 2 months ago.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.82/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 fl oz bottle sealed with Jacks Abbey pressure cap.

poured into HF wine stem.

Appearance: Hazy and glowing straw bodied beer. 3 fingers tall white head with long lasting retention. Slowly drops down to a thick cap and leaves moderate lacing all over the glass.

Smell: bready malts, honey, and lager yeast.

Taste: moderate bitterness and bready malts to balance out the bitterness. Lager yeast is fairly potent as well. Grassy hops and slightly floral.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation levels. Carbonation is creamy and the beer is a very smooth drinker. Bot a little bit of a booze bite to it as well.

Overall: Not much complexity from the hop profile and the hops also taste as if they maybe on the borderline of being stale. Will have to revisit a bottle of this when I can verify freshness of the beer.

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Photo of tigg924
3.83/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: bright yellow in color, 1 inch head, clear, moderate carbonation

Smell: pine and citrus hops

Taste: pine and citrus hops, rind, and light toasted malt

Mouthfeel: medium bodied, moderate carbonation, sweet start with a big bitter middle and a less bitter end, dry

Overall: 100 IBUs and showing it. This will not disappoint those who love hop bombs. Much like the rest of Jack's Abbey's brews, it is very clean. Nice beer, but one is good enough for me.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.83/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

Thanks to drewone for sharing this one.

Pours a hazy light orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, citrus zest, and some earthy hop aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty but has a slightly better hop aroma in my opinion.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.84/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle opened on 10.16.13

A - Pours a hazy light orange with a huge light tan head that fades slowly.

S - Lager yeast and some earthy-grassy hops.

T - Grassy hops with an earthy lager finish.

D - Good carbonation with a light body.

O - Hop forward lager, pretty dirty grass and earth.

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Photo of Florida9
3.84/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Hazy pastel light yellow in color. Forms a rather sizable fluffy white head. Good retention. Lots of lacing.

S: Aroma smells like a hoppy pilsner. Citrusy lemon, some lighter malts, and just a hint of pine.

T: Taste is like an amped up pilsner, but in a mostly good way. Lighter malts. Bright, crisp flavors. Green apple, lemon, green-grassy hops, citrus zest, pith. Slightly herbal. Fusel alcohol on the finish.

M: On the lighter side of medium. Very crisp. Medium carbonation. Light-medium bitterness. Fusel spice.

O: A pretty good beer, though the lighter qualities of the beer do little to hide the aggressive alcoholic qualities of the beer. That said, I am typically not a fan of the Imperial Pilsner style and while I am not entirely sure this was brewed to be in Imperial Pilsner, I can say this is my favorite example of the style that I've come across.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

.5 liter bottle
Served in a pilsner glass

A - It is yellow in color with a chill haze. My pour yielded about six inches of eggshell head. The head is rocky and clings to the sides.

S - It smells like biscuit-y. I also smell a little lime.

T - The taste is a combination of biscuit and bitterness. The doughy start is offset by the hops bitterness.

M - Moderate

O - I fear I may have neglected to drink this beer at its prime; however, I had a Hoponius Union that I bought at the same time, and it was fine. This may have been on the shelf longer. I am not sure. What I am sure of is that I liked the Hoponius Union much better. Regardless, this is my celebration of National Lager Day.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hazy opaque yellowish golden colored beer. Judging this as a lager, should be clearer. Egg whites is what the head looks like, not tight carbonation but pretty. Plenty of lacing. Aroma is big, pine, lemon pinesol, pithy citrus. What more can be said? The aroma blasts out of the glass and is the strongest aspect of this beer. Tastes good! Hoppy in the citrus and pine variety way with a slight grassy quality married with hidden sulfur. Clean malt profile, the hops lead the way. Somewhat one dimensional in taste and a slight let down. Medium bodied, medium carbonation, medium all the way around in the mouthfeel category. Clean, clean finish, slight bitter hop, but with the clean palate expected of a lagered beer. The finish is another strong aspect of this beer. It's good, period.

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Photo of Bosoxfan20
3.86/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A- Clean golden with a 2 finger head that's very white. Solid retention and soapy lacing. Fine looking Pils.

S- Smells of huge west coast hops. Citrus abound. Biscuit malts. Touch of caramel.

T- Follows nose well with the hop forward notes of citrus and grass. It carries throughout the drink, but mostly generic malty base of biscuits and honey come through as well. Some caramelized notes again. Dry. Hops come back for another round in the finish that creates a slightly harsh bitterness.

M- Dry, light body close to mid. Strong bite in the finish. Prickly on the tongue with nice carbonation. Similar to an IPA, but the body of a pils. A bit thin and oily to stand up to the hop punch this one is smacking me around with.

O- A ballsy take on the style as we have come to expect from J'sA. Bold hop profile pushes the edge of a hoppy pils. Only knock is the malt base seems to be rather bland and hindered the balance/drinkability. Overall, a very solid showing, but not my fav imperial Pils. I'd like to think of it as a west coast imperial pilsner.

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Photo of smcolw
3.86/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Small but lasting head that leaves rings of lace after each sip. The color is dirty gold with a bit of a haze.

Mild smell. I didn't detect the bittering hop I was about to taste. What I did smell was quite floral with a bit of pale malted barley present. Unusually, the smell intensifies as I drink the beer.

This is a hop bomb with plenty of grapefruit rind style bitterness. There's seemingly no malt base. The swallow is lip puckeringly bitter, giving this beer a very long aftertaste. The body is heavy for a pilsner but the higher combination makes it feel appropriate.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.89/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Slightly opaque orange/amber color. I got a massive head but I think this was due to a not fully cleaned glass (long story). The bottle lists 100 IBUs and 8% ABV. The date, on the neck, is totally unreadable.

S: Grassy with some malts.

T: Grassy, spicy, slight citrus. Tangerine and apricot. The 100 IBUs is balanced enough to not be a punch in the face.

M: Clean and crisp with a dry hop finish.

O: This is a really enjoyable beer. The mouthfeel is clean and crisp. There are malt and grass notes that make the taste very nice. I was worried about the bitterness at 100 IBUs - but it was nicely balanced. Also the 8% ABV was hidden well.

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Photo of argock
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%

Served on-tap in a 10 oz clear glass snifter at The Reservoir (Waterbury, VT).

A: Clear honey-golden with 1/2-finger cap of foamy, light beige head with good retention and a think collar of lace. (4)

S: Noble hops dominate with grassy, minty aromas combined with slightly sweet pilsner maltiness with a light grainy edge. Alcohol is well-masked. No yeast esters. (3.75)

T: Clean and crisp despite the high ABV, it drinks more like 6% than 8%. The minty, herbal nature of the hops carries through all the way from early to the finish with a clean lightly grainy and sweet pilsner maltiness that is bready. The flavor, while enjoyable, is not terribly complex. Bitterness is medium at most. (4)

M: The feel is amazing for this big of a beer -- still crisp and drinks lighter than its true heft. (4.25)

O: I liked this beer but wish it had more complexity -- it is a one-trick pony flavor-wise but it does that trick with noble hopping well.

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Photo of maximum12
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again to mjg0725 for my second bottle of Jack's Abby. Same funky label on another 12 oz. bottle.

The pour is rabidly carbonated; just like my job, I have to take two breaks in five minutes so the liquid/foam fits in its alloted glass. It doesn't fall hardly at all, either. Looks like snow. Body is an unclear orange-yellow. Nose is more peaches & cream than a typical hop profile, sweeter, too. Echoes of dankness.

Mass Rising is a creature with a number of faces. As the visual would suggest, this is carbonated right to the edge of insanity, which impacts the mouthfeel negatively & detracts some from the tastes as well. Tastewise there's plenty going on. And really weird because I can just think of something - pine, lemon, citrus, acid - & bam, I can taste it. Either it's as complex as The Synergism Hypothesis or my taste buds have become one with my imagination. All that's in there & there's a touch of spiciness & a moderate bitterness. Prickly. But sooo easy to drink, not buying the ABV. Gotta be half that.

If the label didn't insist, I wouldn't even notice the lager yeast, it's subsumed by layers of tastiness & hops. Tame the carbonation & this would be excellent; as is, an easy-drinking, very good beer.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.93/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jeff for splitting the Jack's Abby goodies. The 2nd Anniversary Lager pours out like liquid sunshine; golden yellow with a moderate haze that swims throughout the entire body. Surprised by the lack of clarity, but it still looks decent enough. A soapy, beaming white head rises up and only take a few moments to gather into a thick collar and thin ring on top of the pale brew.

As expected, based on the description as well as their regular IPL, the aroma is filled with pines and peppery spice. There's some pretty dank hoppage going on, and even a mild cat urine aroma that's floating about. I'm thinking Simcoe and/or Summit are being used somewhere in here. White pepper covered white grapefruit peels (wut) with mild orange and other, more nebulous notes of bitter citrus. Nothing in the aroma notes at much lager yeast or even malt. This bad boy is all about the hops, through and through.

Resinous and full of pine is the first sip with a tongue clenching bitterness that strikes immediately and takes its time mellowing out into a much softer, underlying, bread malt sweetness. When the raw, oily hop flavors start to fade, they also begin to reveal their fruitier side - citrus, grapefruit, orange, more on the bitter side still, but a touch of juicy flesh is hidden in there somewhere. As mentioned previously, cracker malt is notable in the finish.

So far, it seems like a hoppy lager that might as well be an ale, since the only real tell that this is a lager is the crisp and dry finish. Carbonated well, thin bodied, and super clean after each sip, though the initial look might not hint at that exactly. I wish for a little more taste from the yeast itself, or perhaps even a stronger, bready malt presence from start to finish, though the beer is still pretty nice if your goal is to have something indefinitely hoppy.

I've enjoyed the three Jack's Abby lagers I've had up to this point in my beer drinking career, although I've gotta say that many of them could probably pass for ales. They've all got a nice, crisp, clean finish, but I've seen similar palatable qualities achieved with ale yeast, or at least close enough to not require extended and cooler fermentation. In any case, another good brew, though I prefer the less aggressive, more drinkable Hoponius Union.

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Mass Rising from Jack's Abby Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 181 ratings.