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Sweetwater IPA - SweetWater Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sweetwater IPASweetwater IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,268 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,268
Reviews: 786
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 11.53%
Wants: 139
Gots: 229 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
SweetWater Brewing Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-05-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,268 | Reviews: 786 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of projectflam86


4.28/5  rDev +7.3%

A- Pours a cloudy orange color with a thin white foam head that leaves some lacing.

S- Ruby red grapefruit nose with orange citrus and piney hop aroma. A fair amount of sweetness and esters present.

T- A citrus hop punch initially. A tangy grapefruit and pine flavor dominates the bitterness. A light sweet caramel malt character balances the finish quite nicely. Some faint floral and tea notes are appreciable as well.

M- Light/medium body with a low-medium amount of carbonation. Finishes smooth and clean.

D- Nicely balanced IPA. Refreshing and easily drinkable.

05-03-2009 13:55:07 | More by projectflam86
Photo of RblWthACoz


4.03/5  rDev +1%

Thanks to BeerMark for this one.

Pours a slightly gazed amber with a creme head. Flavor is heavy on the bitter with a pine and resin tone. Feel is well bodied on the liquid and the carbonation is fairly noticeable. This is a good IPA. Some might consider it rough around the edges, but if you are looking for something intense, I think you'll like it.

05-02-2009 02:36:58 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of tpd975


4.1/5  rDev +2.8%

One I had been wanting to try for a bit.

A: Pours a nice lively orange hue with a nice solid white head. Good retention with a nice smattering of lace all the way down the glass.

S: Very bold citrus aromas. One of the more fragrant IPA's out ther. Lots and lots of nice fresh squeezed Florida pink grapefruit. Simple but good.

T: Wonderful rich caramel malt, bold, bold grapefruit, lemon grass, and subtle pine. Really nice flavors.

M: Medium in body, smooth, refreshing with great carbonation.

D: Not bad. If they could push a bit more flavor out of this one it would be world class....

05-01-2009 02:01:15 | More by tpd975
Photo of mikereaser


4.13/5  rDev +3.5%

A - pours a cloudy orange-rust color with just a layer of fine bubbles on the surface

S - aroma of orange and grapefruit, citrus hops and sweet malts

T - not as pronounced as the aroma, pine and citrus with just a hint of malt

M/D - nice bitterness, taste and carbonation. I would grab one of these any day.

04-29-2009 17:03:16 | More by mikereaser
Photo of NCSUdo


3.75/5  rDev -6%

12 oz bottle

A: Clear copper under a small white head. Minimal lace and retention.

S: Nice, ripe citrus fruit, grapefruit, maybe a splash of pine. I'm not getting much malt, but the hop isn't overpowering.

T: A little smaller than the aroma. A piney hop, with some hints of grapefruit. Again, not picking up a lot of malt. Bitterness is about medium and balanced well.

M/D: Light to medium body, a little slick, carbonation is slightly prickly. Drinkability is good. A pretty solid IPA.

04-29-2009 01:05:01 | More by NCSUdo
Photo of donkeyrunner


2.45/5  rDev -38.6%

My first beer since the Boston marathon and the bottle says "the beer you've been training for." Ain't that somethin'.

Pours a clear, dark gold. Decent white head that leaves some lace but has good retention. Freshness dated for 6/1/09!

Smells of floral hop at first pour but as the head faded so did the scent. More of an herbal swamp muck hop. Very malty for an IPA.

Tastes like lemon iced tea. Very mild bitterness and very malty for an IPA. Hops mainly serve as a peppery twang to the lemon tea malt.

I had this on tap in Nashville awhile back and it was great. Not so good in the bottle.

04-23-2009 22:12:06 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of BrewerB


4.05/5  rDev +1.5%

Thanks to PerzentRizen for the hookup on this beer!

A - Medium orange/light copper. Slight haze. Thin off-white head with a small amount of lacing left on the glass.

S - Prominent fruity hops that include mango and grapefruit. There's also a piney/grassy note. Very modest esters.

T - Grassy/resiny hop flavors jump to the front with a touch of grapefruit beneath. Moderate-high level of bitterness and a dry finish. Slight toast malt character but for the most part a clean malt profile.

M - Medium-bodied and moderately-carbonated. Smooth.

D - Easy to drink IPA with a clean, dry finish and a pleasant grassy/fruity hop profile. Good balance and appearance. I'd definitely take a second if I had another bottle.

04-21-2009 01:20:58 | More by BrewerB
Photo of cadizkyguy


4.3/5  rDev +7.8%

My first Sweetwater brew. Pours wonderfully into my Sam Adams sensory glass. Nice frothy head and wonderful smell to match. I can definitely smell the hoppiness of this brew. The taste is magical. The bitterness matches the smell. I love the fact this beer is unfiltered, giving it a distinctive look, smell and taste. At 6.7 percent ABV, this IPA definitely packs a punch. But, like ROCKY, I can handle it. Definitely my kind of IPA. A wonderful beer. Thanks Sweetwater.

04-19-2009 07:07:14 | More by cadizkyguy
Photo of Yesac


4.1/5  rDev +2.8%

A- Clear. Copper in color with small bright white head.

S- Big bitter dry hop aroma. You'd think this is a double.

T- Very Piney. Strong bitterness. Bready malt finish. Well balanced and refreshing IPA. Grab a few of these after mowing the lawn. Thick bodied but watery tasting.

M- Thick bodied with a palate feeling as if this is high IBU's. Piney taste is left on the palate.

D- Very well balanced and crisp. Great bitterness and just an overall easy drinker.

04-16-2009 21:32:03 | More by Yesac
Photo of PeterLemonjello


2.65/5  rDev -33.6%

Had in bottle and on draft.

Good looking beer with nice carbonation and a decent head. Dark golden, hints of orange color. Unfiltered IPA so it's not crystal clear (kudos).

Smell is very citrus leaving the senses anticipating a big hoppy experience.

Taste is where I get lost after such a great smelling beer. Sweetness from the residual sugars combined with the big/particular hop flavor (as opposed to hop bitterness) have me thinking I just cracked open a can of pineapple juice.

Mouthfeel is appropriate for style.

Drinkability for me is very low as I'm just not a fan of this beer.

Quality brewery and I'm a fan of some of their other offerings (Sweet GA Brown & 420)...but I'll always pass on their IPA.

04-15-2009 03:29:30 | More by PeterLemonjello
Photo of jjanega08


4.65/5  rDev +16.5%

A= Pours a golden amber color with a nice one finger head that leaves great lacing on my glass and lasts till about halfway through my drink where it falls into a ring around my glass.
S= Very pungent. Pineappley is one of the main things I smell. Lots of grapefruit as well with some pine. There's a very very subtle grainy caramel malt odor as well.
T= Great taste! Very hoppy up front with strong bitter pine notes. Some grapefruit comes in as well. The finish is beautiful on this beer. Buttery delicious bread sort of aftertaste lingers on the back of my tongue.
M= Smooth Lower carbonation and a crisp clean finish
D= Very high. I really like this beer. I think it's got great balance for a hop forward IPA. The finish with the malt is ridiculous. Great IPA

04-14-2009 00:37:07 | More by jjanega08
Photo of wmthorne


4/5  rDev +0.3%

Consumed from a Sweetwater glass from a flying saucer brewery night.

Pours a golden orange with a thin head. Nice lacing as the brew level recedes.

Smells of citrus and hops. Couldn't place which citrus fruit until another reviewer mentioned grapefruit. That is it exactly.

Good carbonation. Goes down smoothly. Would be great to enjoy in the sun or shade on a spring day. I am a sweetwater fan so I was looking forward to trying the ipa. It didn't disappoint me on this hoppy kick I am on.

04-12-2009 21:59:09 | More by wmthorne
Photo of rlcoffey


2.98/5  rDev -25.3%

Poured an orange/copper color with a nice white head. Great lacing as it goes down.

Nice hoppy aroma with a orange citrusy predominance.

Taste is moderately bitter, underbitter for an IPA. Hop flavor is mostly orange with a touch of mango. Malt sweetness is barely present, allowing the hops to shine, unfortunately, they dont. A bit too subdued.

Mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side with a hop slickness hanging around.

Good, I wouldnt turn one down if handed to me, but not sure I would choose it over very many other IPAs.

04-09-2009 23:09:01 | More by rlcoffey
Photo of mday


4.15/5  rDev +4%

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A :: Hazy orange with a slight copper tint. Frothy, quickly dissipating head.
S :: Pleasant citrus with a subdued pine aroma. Fresh and crisp. They should bottle this fragrance.
T :: Nice up front hop bitterness that leaves you with an interesting, but still good, slightly sweet grassy-citrus-pine flavor. As it warms the hop bitterness pushes through with a grapefruit undertone.
M :: Moderate carbonation, smooth and light-medium mouthfeel. It leaves you with a slight sticky residue which makes you want to drink more to clean the tongue.
D :: Very drinkable. The alcohol is well hidden and I had to check the bottle again to be sure of ABV.

If you've seen this brew and haven't had it yet...you really need to go get some.

04-03-2009 22:32:19 | More by mday
Photo of goatgoat


4.45/5  rDev +11.5%

Thanks to UGADawgGuy for the opportunity.

Pours a hazy orange gold. A thick frothy tan head falls quickly to a cap with conglomerate islands of larger bubbles clinging together. Strands of lace artfully decorating the glass.
Aroma is fantastic. Floral, pineapple, citrus, an aroma showcase. This is why I love the hops, brews like this.
A fairly hefty malt presence for an IPA, honey like sweetness. Then the hops, just as the aroma promised. A long, strongly bitter finish, without any harshness.
Medium body, but a little watery in the feel. Definite resinous feel.

I'm a huge hop-aroma fanatic, especially this sort of blend of hops. I'm not sure what's involved exactly... cascade, amarillo, others I'm sure. But I love it.

04-01-2009 23:28:31 | More by goatgoat
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.8/5  rDev -4.8%

Vivid, bright orange with a light brush stroke of tawny. Leaving the beer unfiltered has left it with the impression of looking very dense. A film of white coats the surface while giant cotton ball like bubbles puff up the circumference. Lacing is glinty and resilient. This looks good enough to be an India Pale Ale playmate of the year.

This brewery is American and clearly proud of it. The aroma reeks of tangy, fruity hops and resiny pine sap. It's probably both the nature of Columbus hops and the method of dry-hopping that is to thank for this sharp and citric character. There's an indication of some toasty malts but clearly more attention is to be paid to these wonderfully lively hops.

For all their aromatics, the alpha acids and sappy resins don't show up much in the taste. Perhaps I could expect more if the sample were a little more fresh but it's a slightly curious case of disappearance. (The tangy pineapple and zestful orange peel are still present, but subtle). In its place, a malt bill of toasted bread and caramelized sugar steps in.

The mouthfeel must be the result of some careful calculations. The bitterness outweighs the sweetness by just the right proportion, the ratio of malt:hop is within the right range and the carbonation is tuned to the ideal level. The only miscalculation seems to be in regards to the serving size - this is far too drinkable to come in only a 12 ounce serving.

Sweetwater urges "don't float the mainstream". Although this offering diverges far off the path of commercial macro products it doesn't stand out in the stream of America's flourishing micro breweries. I liked this a lot but the fact is: there's plenty of fish in the sea. That being said, I'm happy to have caught it - this isn't one you'd throw back in!

04-01-2009 01:57:56 | More by biegaman
Photo of barleywinefiend


4/5  rDev +0.3%

Poured a deep yellow color with a small white head. Nose is hoppy, citrus, floral with lots of hops. You can feel a dry hop in this beer on the taste. Lots of floral and light citrus notes. Pretty big and tasty IPA overall by Sweeetwater. Worth a try for sure.

03-28-2009 03:49:22 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of Proteus93


4/5  rDev +0.3%

A: What a nice, frothy head topping off an ever-so-slightly hazy golden brew. Nice rings of lace on the way down, good and sticky.

S: A little floral, a little herbal, a little earthy, and a little malty. There's nothing to explosive going on in the nose, rather a number of more subdued scents blended nicely together.

T + M: Slightly spicy and herbal hops, with a nice bready backbone. It's not incredibly pungent, but quite flavourful and treats the palate quite nicely. There's a little sharp carbonation on the front, but it smooths out very quickly to give a feeling of crispness and it goes on to allow the flavours through in all their glory.

D + notes: This is a good offering. It has some English IPA qualities to it in some ways, with the more subtle and balanced flavours and scents. I quite enjoyed this beer, and would look forward to another.

03-24-2009 02:43:39 | More by Proteus93
Photo of sublimesipping


4.43/5  rDev +11%

I guess that a layover at the airport does not mean the dirth of good beer, au contraire mes amis, quite the opposite this BA experienced stranded in Atlanta Hartsfield- never been to this airport before or Atlanta or GA for that matter so did not know what to expect, WOW did I find a great beer to help me pass the time...
Served in the airport special 20oz size, very very fresh , excellent glass lacing and a honied amber color. great aroma of fresh cut grass, pine, and floral aromas. the taste reminds me of Pliny(slightly watered down and not quite as deep) but no matter, a comparison to what for me is a world class IPA says a lot about this beer. Had some other tastes of this brewery's beer and very suprised. If I am ever in atlanta I will seek this place out. Very good beer but this one stood out above the rest. For a BA who prides himself as a discerning hophead, this was a great IPA. worth drinking anyplace, anytime, airports included. Seek it out and you will not be disappointed. Cheers to the Sweetwater brewers!

03-21-2009 01:08:48 | More by sublimesipping
Photo of scifan

North Carolina

4.1/5  rDev +2.8%

Pours a beautiful golden honey color with a nice two finger head that fades fairly quickly into a foamy ring around the glass leaving some nice lacing.
Smells great. Nice floral and citrusy hops and some nice sweet maltiness. Taste similar to smell great hop flavor, very citrus almost lemony and some nice malt too balance. Tons of awesome hop flavor and not too much hop bitterness. Well done Sweetwater.

03-14-2009 03:47:24 | More by scifan
Photo of FtownThrowDown


3.25/5  rDev -18.5%

Pours a dark amber in color with a very nice, frothy, bubbly head.
Smell is very green, sticky icky hops. These come through even more in the taste. Don't know if it was intended or the hops just weren't ready. But it's a bit too much to get past. Different.

03-14-2009 01:09:44 | More by FtownThrowDown
Photo of spointon


4.33/5  rDev +8.5%

I poured this one from a 12oz brown bottle into a tulip pint glass.

A= This ale poured a cloudy orange-gold color with a 3/4" white head that slowly dropped to a thin sudsy cap. There was a huge amount of sticky lace left behind on my glass.

S= This beer smelled like a sweet caramelly burst of biscuit malt blended perfectly with a big pine and citrus hop wallop. Very pungent yet beautifully aromatic and balanced.

T= Wow this ale impressed me. The biscuity sweet malts lead off with a healthy dose of caramel shot through. The hops soon came crashing in with all their fresh pine and citrus beauty. Lots of fruity esters present in the flavor as well. The finish got progressively drier as it progressed toward a lingering hop aftertaste.

MF= Medium bodied with a relatively crisp mouthfeel.

D= For a beer that I had never even heard of and that I acquired as an "extra: in a trade, this was a freaking awesome beer! Totally flavorful, and i could drink a bunch of these in a sitting for sure. Wow!

03-13-2009 05:00:37 | More by spointon
Photo of LilBeerDoctor

New York

4.43/5  rDev +11%

Bottle, best by 3/30/09. Pours a clear orange with a small white head. Aroma of sweet citrus, tropical fruits, grapefruit, and grassy hops. Flavor of sweet oranges, some grapefruit and caramel malt. Incredibly fruity and awesome. Super smooth drinking. Wow, this beer just awed me! I need a case of this stuff!
9/4/9/5/17 (4.4/5)

03-10-2009 16:32:41 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of BigBry

Alberta (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev +2.8%

Picked up this bottle at the Total Wine and More, Raleigh. Best before 5/29/09. Label as pictured above:
"Don't float the Mainstream - This mammoth IPA is defined by generous quantities of premium hops. Extensive dry hopping contributes to its very intense hop character. This beer is unfiltered and as always unpasteurized to leave all the natural flavors intact. The beer you've been training for!"
Pours a clear, copper color with a light and bubbly head. Foam recedes slowly leaving a thin sheet of lace. Fruity hop aroma, grapefruit and orange citrus, flowery sweet hops. Love the smell.
Hop bitterness to start, but sweet toasted malts keep eveything in balance. Then piney, resin hops finish the profile. Bitterness matches the malt very nicely. Solid mouthfeel, creamy with decent carbonation, lingering bitter aftertaste.
A very well made local IPA.

03-09-2009 23:49:27 | More by BigBry
Photo of Bounty628


4.22/5  rDev +5.8%

Sweetwater IPA is a generous 6.7% ABV and is a nicely balanced IPA that hides some of the 6.7% behind a crisp hop freshness. As the beer ranks in somewhat moderately at 6.7%, Sweetwater IPA is a great selection for a session beer.

The pour yields a brilliant and bright orange color that has the right amount of haze to it. There is a moderate amount of carbonation in the pour. A nice white head of about two fingers fills the top of the pint glass nicely and there is an ample amount of lacing left along the glass throughout the offering.

There is no hiding the nose once this beer is poured into the glass. Immediately an inviting mixture of hops and citrus is recognized in the nose but the hops certainly take the ribbon in terms of winning out. Though there is a pleasant sweetness to the citrus that invites you into tasting the beer, really what impressed me with Sweetwater IPA was the fresh hop smell at play.

One need not fear that all the hops present in the nose would somehow bow out when it comes to the taste. Au contraire! The same inviting hops that were there in the nose come racing through on the taste and the beer shines as a true example of a solid American IPA. There is a nicely crafted pine hop complexity at work in the Sweetwater IPA that matches itself to hints of both grapefruit and oranges. There is a sense of a smooth beginning to the taste that ends up with a more citric, quasi-acidic finish that is worked out in such a way to not offend.

There is a rather nice mouthfeel to the Sweetwater IPA even given the intense hop nature that is in the taste. With a moderate carbonation level, there is a nice smoothness to the beer that works its way across the palate nicely. Though a strong IPA in nature, the mouthfeel is certain well balanced enough to have plenty of different beer drinkers find this offering as being a well rounded IPA.

03-07-2009 00:14:47 | More by Bounty628
Sweetwater IPA from SweetWater Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 2,268 ratings.