Head High - Kane Brewing Company

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Head High
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BA SCORE
95
world-class

524 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 524
Reviews: 81
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 9.35%
Wants: 103
Gots: 76 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Kane Brewing Company visit their website
New Jersey, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: bonbini26 on 08-27-2011

Head High is our interpretation of an American-style India Pale Ale (IPA). This beer is all about the hops; we use a blend of five different varieties all grown in the Pacific Northwest. A small charge of Chinook and Columbus early in the boil adds a smooth bitterness. A majority of the hops are then added late in the kettle or post-fermentation to produce a beer that is heavy on hop flavor and aroma. The combination of Cascade, Centennial, Citra and Columbus give Head High a noticeable grapefruit flavor with aromas of citrus, tropical fruits and pine. Our house American ale yeast ferments to a dry finish that accentuates the use of imported Pilsner and lightly kilned crystal malt resulting in Head High’s straw color and crisp flavor.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 524 | Reviews: 81
Photo of djspe
4.51/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

One of the best IPAs I've had in a while. Tremendous flavor without being overpowered by the bite of the hops -- which is all too common these days. You can really taste the fresh hops, piney, crisp, ever so slight citrus/graprefruit, and a bit of malt without being sweet. I believe this was unfiltered, adding to the rich mouth-feel and overall complexity.

Photo of cpetrone84
3/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pour is lightly hazed yellowish amber with a thin white ring. Nose has a light cereal with a hint of rubber. A bit phenolic with a hint of pine and citrus. Taste has a light bitterness and gentle carbonation. Grain an cereal on the light body with more citrus and a light pine. Bitterness lingers with some dirty wheat. Bitterness out weighs the other hop flavors an malts are a bit unrefined and unfocused.

Photo of StJamesGate
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

on tap at Garden State Diner, Newark Airport.

Rocky, crusty taupe head that sheets over goldenrod body.
Big green hopsack nose with lemon peel and some skunk - rocking.
Mango donut with papaya, overripe orange, and light rosin hops.
Tropical fruit salad finish and piney linger. Little hop resin-crystal comebacks.
Lt-med, creamy, round, touch of oil.

Cascade, Centennial, Citra and Columbus

Fruity, almost session strength, and way smooth. A bit thin - an APA, really - but the dry hopping really gets the best tropical character out of Citra. Auspicious début for Kane and a solid for NJ.

Photo of PeterParker
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Court Jester in Matawan.

Clear golden color. Half a finger of head, tight bubbles with good lacing.

Strong hop profile up front. Some pine is in there and maybe some orange peel on the tail end.

A hophead's dream. Complex combination of bittering hops that's tough to pinpoint. I get pine, grapefruit, and lots of spice. Aftertaste is lemony. Really nice.

Medium carbonation.

A real winner here. I, for once, am proud of a New Jersey beer! Not saying NJ beer is bad, but it usually doesn't quite stack up. Head High does stack up to the best of em.

Photo of Givemebeer
4.37/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Hazy golden color with a 2 inch head and great lacing.

S: Bursting with citrus flavor. Overwhelming smell of grapefruit.

T: Grapefruit, mango, orange, and some kiwi. Bitter IPA but with a small malt background to keep the bitterness in check.

M: Medium bodied, slightly chewy with a dry finish.

O: Just a great IPA. Lucky that this beer is fairly common in NJ.

On a side note, I was lucky to have this from a cask dry hopped with Citra and it was a magical experience.

Photo of MadCat
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Re-reviewed after having a fresh pint on tap

Appearance: Dark golden orange with a good white head, good lacing

Smell: Piney and resinous, some floral notes.

Taste: Earthy hops, bitterness, Citrusy hops, caramel bready malts. Well balanced

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation

Overall: Outstanding this time. A good local treat. Not sure why I didn't really like it so much the first time around, but this was fantastic this time. Reinforces the fact that Kane is a local brewery to watch.

Photo of Nugganooch
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On Tap at Old Man Rafferty’s in New Brunswick, NJ
12/11/13 – Standard pint glass

A: Light caramel orange hue with some chill haze slightly in effect. Thin layer of paper white foam rests on top for a few moments. Light ribbons and swaths of lace decorate the glass all the way down the drink.

S: Smells like a big ol’ grapefruit bomb with some mild tropical fruit notes. Mix in a bit of dank herbs, gooseberry, and a dash white wine grape. Really nice. There is some faint pale malt sugar making its way through that sweetens up the aroma. Overall a very nice fruity and floral bouquet. Definitely has some Citra going on which has me excited.

T: Nice hop flavors of grapefruit zest, gooseberry, unripe berry, melon, and some earthy herbals towards the finish. Resinous with a high level of bitterness and puckering dryness to it. Restrained malt cracker with some light sugary crumbs sets the stage for dem hops. Alcohol is noticeable but kept well in check throughout the drink. This is a pretty solid IPA. Digging it.

M: Moderate to lighter in filling with an even amount of carb giving a nice spritz to an otherwise smooth consistency. Bitter and resinous on the palate with some mild alcohol warmth. Crisp and dry with a long lasting linger.

D: This is my kind of IPA – West Coast in style with lots of fruity flavor and Citra goodness.
Nice find. Recommended.

Photo of alaimoa
4.51/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at the brewery and in growler same night
Overall this is an outstanding brew that can hold it's own against HF society 5. Initial thought was wow nose very similar with pine and grapefruit. Semi bitter with a nice citrus (grapefruit/pineapple) and earthiness. Nice depth and crisp dry finish.

Photo of corby112
4.32/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Draft at The Pour House in Westmont, NJ.

Pours a slightly hazy, dark golden orange color with tangerine hues and a frothy, one finger white head that had good retention, slowly fading into a thick, lasting ring.  Streaks of soapy lacing are left behind. 

Dank floral hop aroma with some oily resins and earthy grass along with pine needle, spruce tip, tropical/citrus fruit and pale malt.  Grassy pine needle character followed by mango, pineapple and grapefruit.  Some sweet malt underneath the hops with hints of caramel and toffee along with some bread and cracker.  

Full bodied with a blast of dank, earthy hops that provide the perfect amount of lingering, dry bitterness.  Crisp and refreshing with the resinous oils countered by sweeter hop notes and a pale malt backbone.  Lots of citrus, especially grapefruit and blood orange, along with some mango and pineapple.  The malt backbone is a little stronger than expected but doesn't interfere with the dank hop notes.  Some caramel and toffee flavor along with hints of bread, biscuit and graham cracker.  Very nice balance of flavors in this beer.  The hop profile is very complex and flavorful and there's just enough malt character, making this beer incredibly drinkable.  

Photo of thedoubler55
4.24/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: A cloudy orange color, with a nice frothy one finger white head at the top that leaves some nice lacing around the glass.

S: Very strong citrus notes up front, with slight hints of pine and brown sugar.

T: The taste goes hand in hand with the nose, lots of citrus up front a good bitterness from the hops, a little stickyness as well.

M: Medium bodied, tingly on the tongue from the carbonation.

O: A good IPA from Kane Brewing Co. was very surprised how good this beer tasted and very well balanced.

Photo of gregO59
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had it on tap at a birthday dinner. Asked waitress what kind of craft beer do you have? her response told me i'd be better off looking for myself. ok, no problem seeing is believing. Saw kane on tap and came back . others ordering drinks -wine -coors light-coors light-mojito= coors light i'm laughing at these beer drinkers and order a kane ipa. drinks come. Still laughing at the'' beer drinkers'' . sip sip I finally said anyone want to try some real beer? response was wow that's strong. wow that's different .wow whats that taste . I said that's beer, not beer water. oh I couldn't have more than 1 of those one said. this place just went on the map again.

usually drink darker styles, but couldn't pass up the kanes. loved the hoppy fruity taste and each sip was like a treat. a cant miss choice.

Photo of rp07090
3.94/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the Office in Westfield, NJ. Pale appearance, intense grapefruit smell and taste, nice hoppy mouthfeel and overall outstanding brew. It got better as I drank, the grapefruit got less intense and settled down to an overall drinkable and enjoyable IPA. I would definitely get again. At 6.5%, I can drink a few of these.

Photo of themind
4.79/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This beer is amazing!I have Pliny and Heady in my possession right now, having drank both very recently, this beer is right there with them. Pliny has more pine, Heady has a little less bitterness but in the end this beer is rocking! If you have a chance to try this brew...dont pass it up. Beer pours cloudy golden ( like Heady if you dont drink it from a can) the aroma is hops and more hops. This is a hop heads dream.

Bottom Line: Awesome, Amazing beer!

Photo of justintcoons
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

64oz growler poured into a shaker pint.

Appearance
Slightly hazed gold with 1/2 a finger of tight, white head. Lively carbonation.

Nose
Honey, grapefruit, tangerine, papaya, lemon and candy sugars.

Taste
Pink grapefruit juice, tangerine, papaya and lemon. Honey sweetened pale malts with notes of candy sugars. Finishes with pine resin and florals.

Mouthfeel
Medium bodied, crisp, smooth and silky.

Overall
As far as American IPAs go, this is top notch. Beautiful balance with a nice bitterness and hella-easy-drinking.

Photo of Samp01
3.85/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at The Office in Westfield with mikeg67. Poured an orange hued amber with a medium lasting white head, some lacing. Aroma and Taste of pine hops, tangy grapefruit, citrus with some splashes of orange, some caramel malt for balance. A medium crisp body, good carbonation. Finish is sweet caramel malt, pine citrus hops with a bit of tangy grapefruit and orange flavor. A well balanced and enjoyable brew.

Photo of KTCamm
4.02/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Morris Tap and Grill in Randolph NJ.

Pours a medium color with some foam attached. Strong grapefruit nose, very pushy. Very nice nose. Toffee malt taste, little sweet, subtle hop fade out. Smooth flavorful progression. Citrus. Quite good. One of the better ones tasted that evening.

Photo of Jmamay22
3.68/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Beer pours a copper hued orange with a thin foamy cap that dissipates to a few bubbles. The scent hits me immediately upon opening my growler. Strong smells of orange peal, pine and a touch of caramel. The piney citrus scent from the hops is absolutely wonderful.

The taste is not quite as strong as the scent. It begins with a touch of citrus that moves toward the pine like resinous character, but refrains from becoming very bitter. The malt has a caramel hint, but largely remains a backdrop. The mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium and a little thinner than I would prefer. All in all a greats smelling beer that falls short of my expectations on the palate, but still enjoyable all around.

Photo of MDDMD
4.24/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-light amber color with a decent white head and good lacing

S-citrus, orange, mango, pine, grassy, malt

T-bread dough, grapefruit, tropical fruit, pine, grassy, moderate bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, crisp

O-really good IPA, nice flavor and balance

Photo of metter98
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Little Town NJ, Hoboken, NJ

A: The beer is clear yellow in color and does not have any visible carbonation. It poured with a thin white head that died down, leaving delicate lacing covering the surface and a thin collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderately strong aromas of pine resin and citrus hops are present in the nose.
T: The taste follows the smell but also has initial flavors of tropical fruits. The pine resin hops seem to be a little more prominent and linger through the finish. A moderate amount of bitterness is present.
M: It feels medium-bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is packed with lots of aromas and flavors of hops but isn't overly bitter. I really enjoyed the combination of hops because the three different types (citrus, pine resin and tropical fruits) made it rather complex.

Photo of mikeg67
3.85/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On Tap at The Office. Pours orange with a long lasting white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of piney hops, orange marmalade, caramel and bready malt. Body is full and very crisp. Taste is very similar to aroma. Finish is long, bitter, grapefruity. Very nice IPA.

Photo of Ysgard
4.81/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Hazy Orange, on the lighter side. A perfectly persistent pearl white blanket of head, trailing delicate lace all the way down the pint. Not grapefruit, but honeysuckle, mango and pine. Randomly found this gem on tap at the attached restaurant at the Courtyard Marriott.
The aroma is great but not amazingly difficult to find. The rare thing about this beer is the perfectly balanced body. No caramel thank god, just the slightest toastiness, with a balanced quaffable thickness. It is as if it was designed to drink at the optimum speed to enjoy these beautiful hops.

Can not wait till this is distributed in bottles and I can bring some home.

Photo of Jimmys
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

growler filled 3/9/13 at the source. served in a nonic pint.

A: a hazy orange body. very hazed. bubbly off-white head has good retention. thick lace left on the way down.

S: citrus, melon, a little bit of grapefruit. a little bit of vanilla. this thing is mostly hop forward. a lot of hop resins.

T: bitter, orange juice. lots of melon. enough grain to provide a backbone, but the hops are the forefront on this brew. a lot of citrus, but enough earthiness that it is not overwhelmingly hoppy.

M: average carb on a medium/full body. this thing is meaty.

D: a really good ipa from NJ. hoppy, yet balanced. awesome and worth trying.

Photo of EgadBananas
4.47/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: sunny, light orange, lots of clarity, off white finger of fluffy head.

Aroma: tropical fruit, manga, peach, nectarine, pine needles, grass, pungent citrus.

Taste: medium bitterness, tropical fruits and citrus, light toasted white bread, light pale malt sweetness, grassy, piny, soft linger.

***Just wonderful. Carbonation was fervent, and the body was medium and oily, clean and crisp. The growler was enough for a several hour session. Delicious!

Photo of neighborhoodguy
4.79/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

What a great IPA. Like a 60 or 90 minute, with a sharp, crisp hop front. I'd say that the citrus was more of a back taste than front, but that would make me sound like an ass. I also liked the aroma and texture. It was slightly creamy, but felt unfiltered at the same time- go figure.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.37/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Growler poured into a tulip

An orange hued body with a fluffy off white cap. The cap rose one finger and left some big sip marks inside the glass.

The nose is of big tropical fruits and pine. Grapefruit, pine needles, mango, tangerines, and apricots over a bed of light biscuit malt with a touch of caramel. The balance definitely leans towards the hops, but the malts are definitely present.

Grapefruit, tangerines, and mangoes rush onto the palate. Juicy fruit before malt carries through the middle. The finish is a good dose of citrus and pine bitterness. A nice balance within the hopping of juicy, sweet fruits and bitterness.

Medium body with a dry, bitter finish. Smooth with just a little bit of an oily/resiny feel.

My third offering from Kane behind Rye Head High and Overhead. They definitely know how to use their hops over there. This is a damn fine IPA that could easily dance in some of the elite circles.

Head High from Kane Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 524 ratings.