Blood Of The Unicorn - Pipeworks Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Blood Of The UnicornBlood Of The Unicorn

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

343 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 343
Reviews: 53
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 9.65%
Wants: 62
Gots: 34 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Pipeworks Brewing Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MasterSki on 05-29-2012

One of our original hop beasts of burden makes its whimsically triumphant return. Blood of the Unicorn is Pipeworks Ninja vs Unicorn's hot redheaded sister. Loaded with fruity and piney American hops this rouge equine always delivers.
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Ratings: 343 | Reviews: 53
Photo of KFBR392
3.26/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: on the brighter side of a red amber imperial ale. Thin head with some very light lacing throughout. Slightly below average carbonation.

Smell: smoked malt and a thick caramel aroma. A crispy hop presence.

Taste: the front is a smooth thickness of caramel and molasses. Some sweet sugar accents really kiss well on the front end. The body get overridden by very bitter hops which stand out too much. Not as much of a dry finish as I expected aftertaste after the body.

Mouthfeel:I the freshness of this beer creates a very clean mouthfeel.

Overall: a little disappointed by this brew. I thought the red ale aspects of this beer got a little lost overall.

Photo of spointon
3.57/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I poured this from a brown bomber bottle into a 32 oz glass mug.

A= This ale poured a super cloudy reddish brown color with about 1" of off white head. Seriously, the clarity of this beer, or lack thereof, is a tagedy. The head retention was excellent.

S= Smelled like rich malts, toffee, alcohol, and a nice mix of piney and citrusy American hops.

T= Started off with a nice rich malt base, fairly sweet but with nice complexity, followed by a big pop of alcohol and a firm bitterness. Hop character was all American in nature, with the pine staying just in front of the citrus. Finished boozy and dry.

MF= Medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a fairly dry feel.

D= The overall drinkability of this beer is ok, but the look is pretty mediocre.

Photo of Keyportnick
3.58/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is great with a nice copper/amber color

Smell- biscuit and Suttble pine/citrus hops

Taste-biscut and strong pine bitter hops

Mouthfeel- nice medium body good slightly stronger carbonation.

Overall- nice overall red ale. Lots of hops and great malt body

Batch#42

Photo of 2beerdogs
3.59/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Thanks @Kevinpitts
This one didn't grab me as much as some of the other hoppy offerings from Pipeworks. Poured very leathery brown swirling cloud with a hint of ruby. Tan head, not too densely packed. Aroma is a bit earthy bitter and and piney. Taste is a very earthy bitterness. Pine barely peaks through. Malt is there but doesn't quite find a balance with the bitterness. Finish is much the same.
Overall, I liked the aroma best, the piney came through more there than it did in the flavor. Pretty good, but I won't trade anything big for this one to get a repeat.

Photo of JohnnyHopps
3.65/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - For a red, this is not exactly red. I supposed it could be the blood of a unicorn that has started to dry. Enough with the semantics!

Smell - The grassy hops get my attention most immediately. I do not really detect the malt in the aroma.

Taste - The beer itself is very hop forward. There is some sweet citrus to the hops, but the sweetness from the malt stays masked. There is some biscuit texture and even a note or two of dark fruit. Mildly resiny hops are present in the aftertaste and actually linger quite nicely. This red does not really fit the style, even for an imperial.

Mouthfeel - The beer is thick enough to linger, which allows the hops to tickle the tongue a little longer. Modest carbonation is present.

Overall - I have had better imperial reds than this one. After waiting patiently to try this one, I am mildly disappointed.

Photo of Grohnke
3.71/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear, deep copper. With the mix of browns and reds, it actually looks like a snifter full of blood. Persistent and creamy egg-nog colored head. Light lacing forms on the glass

Nose is bursting with pine and tropical fruit like citrus. Massively hopped. A sharp caramel note supports the hops. Light bready/biscuit malt is buried beneath. Light trace of alcohol.

The sharp caramel note that was in the nose comes out a bit stronger in taste and carried by an onslaught of bright, resiny citrus and pine hops. There is a surprisingly great balance of bready malt, caramel sweetness and hop resin that come together very well on the palate. Hop bitterness is strong, but not overbearing. The finish is moderately dry . The aftertaste is long and reverts back to the balance of the nose, where the hops are in the forefront with subtle caramel sweetness in the background.

Medium body, medium carbonation. Very smooth and creamy. Theres a residual stickiness that lingers on my lips that feels equal parts residual sugars and hop resin. Light trace of alcohol warmth.

Although on first sniff this beer seems like its going to be massively dry, and hop-centered, it turns, the malt profile was ample enough to level things out and make a wonderfully balanced imperial red.

Photo of cnbrown313
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

To start, Pipeworks has some of my favorite bottle art, and this one was no exception. I wish there was a picture up, but there is a unicorn skull on a black label that looks very dark and ominous.

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass

A - This was my favorite part of the beer. It pours almost like a blood red, with a straw colored 2 finger head and nice lacing. Looks beautiful in the glass.

S - Smells a little bready and hoppy. Maybe a little pine smell too.

T - This was not my favorite part of the beer. I am all about hoppy beers, but it was too bitter for me without enough sweetness to balance it out. You get that piney hop taste, but it kind of lingers on the palate for a long time, and not in a pleasant way.

M - The mouth feel was nice. As usual with Pipeworks, the carbonation was perfect.

O - Overall, I would definitely give this beer a try. But it wasn't my favorite from Pipeworks.

Photo of koutkid41
3.79/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A : Beautifully clear and reddish brown color with a nice white head with a lingering head.

S: Faint smells of citrus with some toffee and pine with some caramel toasty bready notes on the backend. Smell doesn't blow you away in intensity but what I can get smells great.

T: You get some citrus upfront with some piney notes, but for the most part it has a dark caramel raisin flavor with some sweetness.

M: Nice mouthfeel, however pretty sweet.

O: Overall, I like it. With amber ales they can be overly sweet and way too caramel forward but with this one you a nice balance with it and a slight hoppy flavor upfront.

Photo of vic21234
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter, Batch #42.

A- Pours a hazy mahogany color with a half to full finger of an off-white head. The head leaves a thin film along the top with some sticky lacing along the sides.

S- Great hop presence in the smell. The aroma is very fruity and citrusy, with grapefruit and mango notes dominant.

T- This one surprised me with the amount of hop kick to it. The hops overwhelm in this one. Tons of pine and citrus hops. The taste of sweet malts are there slightly, but drowned out by the hops.

M- Medium bodied, well carbonated, bitter, very dry finish.

This one drinks like a DIPA in my opinion. Good stuff, just more hoppy than I would have thought for a red.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to GRG1313 for sharing this one at his tasting.

Batch # 70.

Pours a murky orange with a foamy off-white head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. A foamy curtain of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, and citrus zest 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 mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with some solid aromas and flavors.

Photo of Jaycase
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

batch 42

a: very dark caramel. insane khaki frothy head.

s: caramel and bready. piney hops.

t: combination of caramel maltiness crossed with piney hops. The malts quickly fade leaving the piney hops to remain. finishes with some good bitterness which seems to last as long as sound emitting from a cymbal does after being hit with a drum stick.

m: thickish mouthfeel. carbonation seems spot on. finishes very dry.

o: a good functional brew from Pipeworks. Alcohol does not hide itself. In their unicorn series, I definitely prefer Ninja vs Unicorn but glad I had a chance to try this.

Photo of csparace
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Smell (4.00) – Super hoppy. Light hop smell – citrus and pines. Something sweet hidden in there.

Appearance (4.00) – Pours a hazy brown with a large caramel tinted head. Super even color throughout. No real carbonation rising to the top. No clarity through the glass.

Taste (3.75) – Lots of roasted malts up front. A real dark bitterness that lasts through the finish. Super dry bitterness that commands the entire taste. Seems like a really dark or roasted pine flavor. Something lemony faintly going on too.

Mouthfeel (3.75) – The tons of bitterness doesn't really translate into a super refreshing feel. Good carbonation levels.

Overall (4.00) – interesting flavor. I think this is quite successful as an imperial red but I may just not like the style. I heard that this was like an IPA but I can't really agree with that. The hop character is completely different. What I don't really like about it is the bitterness and how it corresponds with the mouthfeel.

Batch 141 in the new red bottle!

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep red/brown color ale with a large light brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of citrus and earthy hops is dominant with medium sweet caramelized malt notes. Taste is also dominated by earthy and citrus hops notes with some semi-sweet caramelized malt notes. Body is quite full with good carbonation. Nicely done with good hops punch and a solid malt bill.

Photo of draheim
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz (batch 16) into a tulip. Pours a murky mahogany w/ a monster khaki head, great retention, lots of sticky lacing, moderate carb.

Aroma is really unique & wonderful. Somehow, it smells red. Ruby grapefruit, pomegranate. Has a tart, refreshing quality. As it warms, more floral hop aroma takes over.

Taste is heavily malty with a sharp hoppy bite. Caramel malt, sweet fruit, bitter hops.

Mouthfeel is thick, heavy, luxurious but a little sticky.

Overall a solidly crafted imperial red.

Photo of socon67
3.96/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Batch #22 cracked for the Superbowl.

A - Pours a dark amber with strong red hue. Lacing is nice as is the foam retention. Bubbly head pours high and settled slowly.

S - The initial smell from the glass is of earthy hops and similar to a DIPA. As it warmed there was more of a light malt and berry smell.

T - Some initial sweetness of light fruit that is balanced by a strong hop forward bitterness. This is very close to an IPA in an amber label. Very similar to Troegs Nugget Nectar in that the sugary flavors and malt profile is dominated by blended hops.

M - Feels lighter than it is and is lightly carbonated. I think one was enough however because of the strong hop forward body.

O - Fun beer and from an emerging brewery. If I lived in Chicagoland I'd take this fresh over Nugget Nectar.

Photo of cvm4
3.96/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very cloudy copper with a very light tan head and okay lacing.

S - Malts at first, hoppy, grapefruit, caramel and pine.

T - A big helping of malts followed by a good dose of pine bitterness. It's really a good mesh of the two.

M - Medium bodied and medium carbonation.

O - Enjoyable and easy to drink.

Photo of PBRmeasap1980
4/5  rDev -1%

22 oz bottle batch 310/311

Decent imperial red. Batch 310/311 is probably a bit old by now (10/15/14), still pretty good.

Photo of WoodBrew
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a very nice hopped up red brew! The beer poured a clear amber with white head that left a nice lace. I poured the beer carefully out of the bottle as to avoid any sediment. The scent was hoppy with a pine/citrus flare. The taste was a great amber/malt base with adornments of pine and citrus. The mouthfeel was full body with decent carbonation. Overall this was an absolute solid offering and I would highly recommend it to those that enjoy hopped up reds!!!

Photo of Vonerichs
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a nice, clear, rusty red-orange hue. Assertive head leaves no lacing.

It has a pleasant aroma of ruby red grapefruit covered with sugar, caramel, and brown sugar.

I'll be honest, most hoppy reds are indistinguishable to me. This is no different. It has a nice grapefruit hop bite backed by a strong caramel malt backbone.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and clean.

Overall, a fine hoppy red but nothing that separates it from the pack of this style.

Photo of TMoney2591
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Local Option cervoise.

Okay, this is a damn badass label... Anyway, the beer behind it pours a dark, somewhat hazy ruby topped by over a finger of dirty, pale khaki foam. So this is what unicorn blood looks like... The nose comprises ruby red grapefruit zest, sweet caramel, pine resin, and a tiny touch of leek. The taste holds notes of grapefruit rind, pine resin, cilantro, and light biscuit. A strong bitterness pervades, though it's not enough to detract too far from good thoughts. The body is a lithe medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a dry, sticky finish. Overall, a very nice red, easily one of the best I've had in a long time. Good times.

Photo of inlimbo77
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz, 3/12/13
Batch 102
HF wine glass

A: Pours a hazy orange, reddish amber color. Initially about a finger of off white head. Leaves some sticky lacing sheets as it fades into bubbles on the top of brew.

S: Earthy and piney hops for sure. Getting a really spicy aroma too. East coast/Mid-west IPA like nose. Some breadiness from the malts, but not as much caramel or nuttiness.

T: Bitterness on tip of tongue. Those crisp earthy piney hops are right there. Really delicious meshing of the malt bill mid-mouth. Works well with those spicy hops. The finish is dry with lingering bitterness.

M: Big medium bodied brew. Drinks more like IPA.

Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark copper brown, when backlit it has a reddish glint. Pouring in the last bit it becomes even darker. Lasting light tan foam, heavy on

Earthy and lightly fruity aroma, bready malt figures largely.
Tea leaves, eucalyptus, and sandalwood.

Big caramel and crystal malt flavors, bready with plenty of spicy, bitter hops to back up the malt bill. Resiny, full bodied, packed with intense flavor. Pine needles, caramel, herbal tea. Slick, lingering bitterness in the aftertaste. Overall pretty burly and solid, as if Alpha King and Bigfoot had a love child.

Photo of MasterSki
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from West Lakeview Liquors. Served in the matching Pipeworks snifter.

A - Two fingers of orange-tinged tan foam that settles to a thick, creamy cap, leaving behind sheets of lace. Dark, lightly hazed, ruby-brown body - really dark for the style.

S - Tons of piney and earthy hops here, with a touch of grapefruit rind and dankness. Very hop-forward, with only some mild bready and sugary cookie malts popping up in the periphery.

T - Malt shows up a little heavier here, with crystalline sugar, toasted grains, and red fruits supporting the earthy and spicy hop flavors. There's a vaguely European vibe to the hop bill, but with restrained bitterness.

M - Slightly grainy, medium-full body, pleasant medium-low carbonation, and an oily and resinous finish. Alcohol is quite well-hidden - I get a touch of warmth after most of a glass, but that's about it.

D - A really nice Imperial Red. The Pipeworks guys said they were going for an 'Imperial' 5 AM Saint, but I think this is much superior (although it's really tough to get fresh Brewdog here). I prefer Ninja vs. Unicorn by a small margin, but this is also quite enjoyable.

Photo of SomethingClever
4.04/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22 oz poured into Can Glass

A: darkest amber color I've ever seen on an amber beer looks almost ruby red and absolute perfect clarity

S: some toffee and burnt sugar smell with some piney hops

T: lots of maltiness and some hops very bitter on the finish a touch sweet

M: it's not bad nothing extraordinary

O: It's a pretty good amber surprising amount of bitterness

Photo of SportsandJorts
4.04/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance:deep orange color tending towards red. Very hazy and opaque. A finger of a tannish head that fades to just about nothing

Smell:toasty and caramel malts. Not too sweet and pretty toasty. Citrus and resiny hops. Hop aroma is pretty strong. Good balance between strong malts and strong hops.

Taste: mirrors the nose exactly. A bit more citrus and resin though. This pushes the balance to hoppy.

Mouthfeel: fairly bitter but in a good hoppiness. Fairly sticky. Good thick body.

Overall: a well brewed imperial red. Nothing too special but it is tasty. Another well done pipeworks beer.

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Blood Of The Unicorn from Pipeworks Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 343 ratings.