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Jamaica Sunset India Pale Ale - Mad River Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Jamaica Sunset India Pale AleJamaica Sunset India Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

147 Reviews
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 147
Hads: 250
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 12.57%
Wants: 7
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Mad River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-30-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Jamaica Sunset India Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 147 | Hads: 250
Photo of braski
4.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance- very naturaul cloudy orange color with a white foamy head.

smell- suttle sweet malts with lots of citruis hops,

taste- lots of hops up front that fad away to a sweet non bitter end.

moutfeel- very smooth medium to light and wet start to finish.

overall- a tasty ipa that is very drinkable and true to the style. (328 characters)

Photo of 57md
3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy light orange with a thin head that quickly dissipates. There is a light floral aroma that is quite pleasant and a light, but present hoppy flavor upfront. The finish is dry and slightly bitter, but this offering lacks the hop punch that I like to have in an IPA.

Bonus: This beer is proudly union made by the men and women of the IAM. (350 characters)

Photo of tdm168
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy orangish amber with 1/2" of loose, bubbly head that has good retention. The nose has notes of bread, pineapple, grapefruit, and faint soap. The taste is light, bready malt, pineapple, and faint yeast in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth with good carbonation.

The bready malt and pineapple are a nice combination, but overall, this beer comes across a little one dimensional. It's really drinkable though, and it's easy to have more than one. (476 characters)

Photo of californiakebab
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark orange, tawny amber, reddish golden hue with a dense white head that leaves ample lacing around the glass. I pick up hints of tropical fruit, orange, grapefruit on the nose, with a slight cat-pee sort of thing as well unfortunately. This beer tastes of fruity hop flavors and has a decent bite from the hops. There's some light caramel malt in the background for balance. Weight medium on the tongue, with good carbonation for great drinkability. Overall this is a very enjoyable west coast IPA, but as a hophead I would prefer more aroma hops, and maybe a more complex malt profile. (596 characters)

Photo of brentk56
3.81/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber color with a very nice head that leaves quite a few swaths of lace behind; impressive retention

Smell: Rather balanced aromatics with both caramel and pine/grapefruit hops commanding attention

Taste: Caramel malt, up front, followed by a piney hop flavor that evolves in a citrusy orange/grapefruit direction by mid-palate; after the swallow, the bitterness lingers into the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Quite enjoyable; Mad River has lifted their game with this one (537 characters)

Photo of BucannonXC5
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pink plastic cup. Tough to see in the pink plastic, but the color appeared to be amberish. Maybe ¾-inches of head, light film and light lacing.

Smelled sweet and citrusy. A bit hoppy sniff as well.

Initial taste was sweet and lemony, followed by an alcohol bite.

Medium body, high carbonation. Bitter ending, but the sweetness makes it slightly refreshing.

A so-so beer. I thought it was going to be a bit better, but I was feeling it after three of them. There are much better IPA’s out there. (530 characters)

Photo of kflorence
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a translucent amber with hints of orange and red. I poured this one aggressively and got about half an inch of frothy foam atop that dissipated to a thin layer of film that leaves a bit lacing around the glass as you drink. Carbonation levels look solid.

S: Lovely citrus and pine hop aroma with a bit of malt in the background. There are also some floral notes and maybe a bit of spice.

T: Taste follows the nose well. Hops hit first, predominantly citrus but definite pine notes in there. Roasted malts come through towards the end of the palate. Finishes dry and bitter with a bit of residual sweetness.

M: This is medium bodied with good carbonation and a bit oily on the tongue. A bit thin for an IPA, but not watery as it has a tiny bit of chewiness to it. I could use a bit more substance, but the thinness of the brew does keep it smooth and easy to drink.

O: Overall, I found this to be a very solid, refreshing take on the American IPA. While this one won't win you over with originality or complexity, it is quite palatable and would make a good session IPA. Some may find the hop levels to be a bit low comparatively to other West coast American IPA's, though I found it to be enjoyable. Another decent brew from Mad River. Cheers! (1,256 characters)

Photo of Spikester
3.36/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours deep amber with 1" cream color head, few lacings. Aroma pine needles, resins, herbal. Taste is good amount of citrus hops with sweet rich malts. Pretty well balanced for an IPA. Some winey qualities due to 7% abv.
Unknown age when reviewed. (247 characters)

Photo of meeekyh
4.27/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have been a fan of Jamaica Red ale for a long time now and was searching for the Serious Madness. Having found only one of the latter I opted to try the IPA offering from this really good beer producer.

I grabbed a pilsner glass and it reveals a orange hued golden beer, sunset colored if you will, with a light tan head that is full but leaves little lacing and dissipates quickly.

Smells are the grapefruit hops I remember liking in the Red, some wafting alcohol and fresh green grass.

Taste is bitter and lightly sweet with a nice malty roundness and a medium mouthfeel that holds the beer up for inspection and allows the flavors to linger. Clean citrus is the last note and the overall finish is dry.

This is a great IPA with awesome malt character reminding me that beer is essentially malt and that the hops are always going to be the follow-up act. Attempts to rewrite this paradigm fail regularly.

This is another outstanding offering form what has reasserted itself as among my favorite brewers. Well worth the premium for this very good IPA.

I would also like to note that my bottle indicates the beer is at 7% ABV as opposed to the 6.4% listed at the time of my review on this website.

Slainte! (1,218 characters)

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.91/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a little bit of a hazy yellow, almost homebrew looking for its lack of attractiveness, yet nothing glaringly 'wrong' with it either, you'll just be thinking you might have a hefe or pale wheat thing going at first. Good woodsy aromatic cascade hop aroma it would seem.

Good cascade bittering hop flavor as well. Light blonde body pairs well with the hopping. Not balanced, in a good way. One of the first ipa's I had back in the 90s that brought out tropical fruit flavor that paired oh so well with the hoppiness and light body. Really was one of the first ipa's in CA that was being bottled. Still a good choice, but its amazing to drink it now and think how this used to be one of the hoppiest beers around.

Today its just middle of the road in terms of its hop quotient, but it doesn't make it any less of a beer, its still a good choice. Freshness dating would be nice, as I have got an old bottle or two of this unintentionally before. (954 characters)

Photo of emmasdad
3.08/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Back in the olden days of craft beer, there wasn't the overwhelming number of unique and original beers on the shelves we enjoy today. Therefore, I had the time to sample quite a few of the pedestrian offerings from Mad River (getting better these days). This one was a rather uninspiring IPA, lightly hopped, more malty than most West Coast IPAs. (347 characters)

Photo of Knapp85
3.3/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This IPA pours out on the copper side, a little bit hazy and has a decent white head on top. The smell is pretty hoppy for just a standard IPA. The taste to me was ok, I found it to be just a little on the weak side. The mouthfeel was pretty good, it had some good transitions from hoppy to malty. Overall I found this beer to average to say the least. Would drink again if the price was right but wouldn't try too hard to get it again. (436 characters)

Photo of pitasoup
3.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to flexabull for this bottle.

A: Golden and slightly hazy with half an inch of foamy white head. This was clear in the bottle so the haze might be from the chill, but I did also notice some sediment at the end of the pour. 3.5

S: Hops. Pine and earthy hops. A bit of malty sweetness as well. Towards the end, fusel and oxidized notes come out. 3.5

T: Bam, tons of pine cone bitterness. A fair bit of grapefruit as well. It is as if I stuck my face into a forest. Lingering citrus, faint lemons on the tongue towards the end. Certainly american hops, perhaps simcoe and then a little fuggle? 3.5

M: Medium body. Head is consistently fine and this helps for a smooth mouthfeel. Slight alcohol as this warms. 4.0

O: Pretty fair IPA/DIPA. There was a lot more hop bitterness and not enough aroma to balance it - this could be a freshness issue. Still, this is very drinkable, I could pound quite a few of these, but I have a feeling the abv is deceptive. 4.0 (966 characters)

Photo of CHickman
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy orange gold in color with a 2 finger foamy/bubbly beige head that fades slowly and looks like a cloud as it goes down, leaving very good lacing and foamy rings; a fine looking beer.

Smells of citrus hops, sweet malt, sweet citrus fruit like grapefruit and orange peel, light grains, lemon zest, coriander and light spices, maybe some pepper, some funky yeast and a faint wet bread odor; a very nice and well balanced nose that smells very good.

Tastes of citrus hops, grapefruit, lemon, orange peel, floral hops, flowers, sweet malt, grass, hay, light grains, coriander, light spices like pepper and brown sugar, yeast, wet bread, tobacco, herbs and some minor hop spice heat; this is a very tasty and well balanced IPA that basically has a matching nose and taste, which are both very good. Not the hoppiest beer for an IPA, but a definite session beer.

Mouthfeel is creamy and crisp at the same time, with a zesty tingle on the tongue that washes down with a light bitterness and citrus bite as the hops give way to bready malts; the body is medium with very mellow carbonation and a real easy flow that makes this a great beer to drink all night. Very enjoyable overall, this is a sold beer. (1,213 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

another out of a mixed six pack at whole foods. i had been trying to get through their lineup forever.

nice pale amber color with a smooth even head of white and a clear consistency that allowed the carbonation to stream to the top rather nicely. aroma was nice light citrus hops with hints of orange, tangerine and touches of light grains and bready malts bouncing around. smooth and clean flavor with a bite up front that mellows and collapses into a nice dry finish with hints of citrus.

overall a nice solid ipa. nothing mindblowing but it will certainly work. (566 characters)

Photo of flexabull
3.55/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy orange color with a pretty nice white head.

Aromas are of hard candies, grapefruits, it also a bit flowery, and dusty.

Taste starts out a bit bitter, with mostly grapefruit notes. Bee then settle into crystal malts, that are a bit sweet, and creamy. Finish is dry, with some mixed fruity citrus and aspirin like bitterness. This beer is certainly on the bitter side, but the malts balance it fairly well.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, nice crisp carbonation, and decent body.

All in all, a pretty good beer, but a bit below others in the style. This comes off as just a bit one dimensional and lacking anything to make it really stand out. Still a pretty decent beer, at a fair price. (699 characters)

Photo of Hatzilla
3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: A clear amber body with a one inch foamy head leaving some lacing in its wake.

Scent: A malty, bready scent with some inviting (but not overpowering) earthy citrus hops.

Taste: More bready malts, with more of the aforementioned earthy hops appearing in the taste than the nose.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, nice mouthfeel with medium carbonation.

Overall: A nice, inexpensive IPA (7.99 for the 6 pack). Worth seeking out for the budget-minded IPA fan, especially if overpowering hops are not your thing. (540 characters)

Photo of Bfarr
2.89/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Hazy orange amber with some sunny edges and medium frothy head with great retention and good lacing. Little citrus and malt aroma. Big spicy/peppery hop evens out quickly with a low to moderate lingering that's slightly unpleasant. Sharp bite and a little foamy.

I like the peppery taste but not much more than that. Taste dissipates rapidly and doesn't offer anything but a tacky linger. (389 characters)

Photo of felipe2toes
3.63/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours copper orange with thick white head--leaves plenty of lacing and crust.

Smells of floral hops, some sort of fruity sweetness, though very mellow for IPA.

Some pine and citrus flavors, maybe even some sweet honey, but not the usual in-yer-face hoppiness in American IPAs. still good.

Good mouthfeel as well, medium-bodied, crisp finish. (344 characters)

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.43/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, hops, mainly pine with a hint of citrus. In the taste, pine hops and a nice malt, not too over the top hops either. A hop bite and medium to light bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry pine hop in the aftertaste. Quite mellow for an IPA, but nice and enjoyable. (325 characters)

Photo of Morey
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper-orange color with a one finger off-white head that hangs around a bit, and produces some pretty decent lacing.

The aroma is on the mild side for an Ipa (although I'm not sure how fresh this bottle is). Some hops in there for sure, but there is also a mello earthy maltiness going on too.

Taste is pretty balanced. Nice hop bitterness up front, but the malt backbone quickly comes in to round things out. No big citrusy flavors here, but it taste pretty good none the less.

Medium body, with a good carbonation level.

I could easily drink several of these. My bottle says that this Ipa is 7%, so Mad River must have recently upped the alc. content on this one.

Morey's Bottom Line: A pretty good Ipa. Nothing ground breaking, but a solid representation for sure. (787 characters)

Photo of WYVYRN527
4.14/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip from a 12 ounce bottle.

A: This beer pours a hazy orange color with a frothy white head that leaves decent lacing. As with other brews from Mad River, this one also throws some serious sediment.

S: The aroma is well balanced, although hops call shotgun in this beer. Floral, with notes of tropical fruit and citrus. Malts lend a sweet, caramel-like aroma in the backround.

T: Taste is bright and vibrant with a rush of citrus, pineapple, and mango up front, but mellowed out by sweet malt notes reminiscent of caramel, honey, and fresh baked bread. The finish is dry, with a pleasant bitterness that stays on the palate for some time.

Notes: Jamaica Sunset IPA is a medium bodied brew that is full of flavor, yet balanced to the point where everything melds together perfectly. Alcohol gives some warming character, but it's low enough that makes this beer incredibly easy to drink. Very well-made! (926 characters)

Photo of beerphan
3.98/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle -> goblet
no date

Pours a cloudy bright orange with a thick tight white head that settles to a rocky blanket and sticks around until the very end. Chalky lines of laces. Carbonation appears steady and abundant.

Nose: Floral, a tad soapy

Creamy smooth body. Starts with a quick toffee centered malt base that ends up caramelly and sweet. Grapefruit and oranges kick in quickly. Good rich balancing bitterness completes the brew.

A lighter IPA that borders on APA or perhaps a tad hoppy version of an English IPA. Will drink again, would be interested on trying a pint or three or 6 on tap. (608 characters)

Photo of DrDemento456
4.1/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had a fresh 2010 bottle which happens to be 7% abv now

A - Bit of a haze on the light amber but I did get a half inch of foamy white head.

S - Semi hoppy with a nice malt backbone. Sort of more pine forward.

T - Sharp bitter pine at first then it rounds to a moderate bit of bready goodness with a sweet malt but falls back to a bitter pine finished. Enjoyable.

M - Moderately medium body but is very hoppy.

D - Man California has some great beers and this is one great one as well. Not sure how old it is but it has a pretty nice hop forward goodness. Could have a few a sitting no problem. (596 characters)

Photo of boss302
3.74/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A Orange color, clear, but there are quite a bit of dregs left in the bottom of the bottle. There was no head to speak of, and I poured it rather aggresively.

S Flowery sweet with some dried fruit, apricot?

T Slight maltiness, with some caramel in the aftertaste. Not as strong a hop flavor as other American IPAs, probably closer to British versions and probably what the brewer intended, i.e. British IPA. Finishes clean with very little hop astringency.

M Medium body, not much bite due to the lower carbonation level. There is a little warmth from the alcohol.

O A good red ale and hopped more appropriately for a British version of the IPA. Recommend. (660 characters)

Jamaica Sunset India Pale Ale from Mad River Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 147 ratings.