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The Pupil - Societe Brewing Co.

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The Pupil
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75 Reviews
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Reviews: 75
Hads: 770
Avg: 4.44
pDev: 7.21%
Wants: 239
Gots: 75 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Societe Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: HopHead84 on 05-31-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 75 | Hads: 770
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap for the 2012 Peter Reeves Memorial Sourfest at Churchill’s Pub & Grille in San Marcos, CA.

Pours a hazy yellow with a foamy off-white head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of citrus fruit, citrus zest, and some tropical fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and pretty refreshing after drinking a bunch of sours.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.46/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

everytime i taste ipa thats so flavorful yet delicate, i think of vermont, and of the way the likes of hill farmstead, lawsons, and the alchemist make hoppy beer. they dont have that high resin feel, they dont have the sticky oily thing going on, and usually dont have the honey sweetness the hops can provide either. they tend to be well integrated, feature some amount of grain character, a softness of mouthfeel, bright aromatics, and a cleaner, less bitter finish. thats why i was so surprised to learn that this beer was made in san diego, it feels so vermont to me. so highly refined, well understood, and balanced brilliantly. its not that that hops or hop varietals are anything new to my palate, it seems a bit of new world tropical fruity stuff with the classic northwest high alpha C varietals. its the way they are dosed here, no harshness from bitterness or plant matter at all, and that softness that comes from baby bubble carbonation and really dry finishing yeast. the dry hopping is where the magic happens here. its so clean and yet big. the abv is really rather gnarly, but its never detected in the drinking experience of this beer. its almost more like a big pale ale than an ipa, considering its balance. beautiful beer, i could happily drink this one forever. great introduction to this brewery for me.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.22/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured out as a clear golden color with a foamy white head on top. The retention and lacing is really good. The smell is sweet and hoppy, nice malty caramel nose with a lemony citrus. The taste is nice, nice malt/hop balance, sweet and bitter. The mouthfeel is light bodied, with a good carbonation. Overall it's a pretty solid brew.

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Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks, Shane.

Appearance: Clear pale gold body topped by two fingers of frothy head.

Smell: Nelson seems dominant here, and that's perfectly fine with me. Notes of gooseberry jam, melon and white grape stand out. It's fairly catty and floral, too. Citra pops out a bit more as the beer opens up, lending it's signature tropical fruit bouquet. There's a slight biscuit-like malt character buried beneath layers of hops. Smells pretty damn excellent.

Palate: The citra/nelson blend is fantastic here, creating one of the more complex hop flavors I've come across. There's gooseberry, guava, grapefruit, white grape and melon, along with some floral undertones and a touch of spiciness. The mouthfeel is excellent - light and dry with no sign of alcohol. Bitterness is low-to-moderate, and malt is negligible beyond contributing body. This feels very Alpine influenced to me, which can only be a good thing. Can't wait to try more beer from this new brewery.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.32/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden color with a finger of white head. Awesome nose of grapefruit, pineapple, pine, and floral hops. A light tropical fruit note in there as well. Very little malt aroma. The flavor has a great fruitiness to it with all of the grapefruit/citrus and tropical flavors. A nice bite of bitterness to it from the pine. Just a touch of bready malt flavor, but still nice and dry. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of mactrail
4.01/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Blind Lady Ale House. Handsome amber color with plenty of carbonation and nice lacing in the glass. More than adequate sudsiness. Hugely fragrant, is the main thing that makes you sip up an notice this.

Sweet and spicy, and I'd go so far as to call it rich. It tastes even stronger than the ABV, more like a Double IPA, and it seems more substantial than the usual thin and harsh IPAs. Amazing spicy notes keep coming up. The aroma is sensational and carries over into each sip. It does get rather bitter, though it's hard to complain too much as this stuff is so full of flavor.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.38/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Growler shared by Chris (spycow). Served in a tulip of some sort at Tom's place.

A - Generous white foam settles to a thin cap, thick collar, and specks of lacing. Transparent golden body.

S - Citrus, lefty with dank herbs, touch of onion, tangerine, some sweet malts and tropical fruits, with a touch of buttered biscuit as well. Light alcohol note that's a surprise but I could be confusing a really sharp pine note for booze.

T - Taste is smoother, with a nice mix of citrus, sweet malts, tropical fruits, leafy herbs, grapefruit zest, and thankfully no booze or onion. There's an almost seltzer-y citrus juice quality to this one.

M - Smooth, dry, medium-full bodied, crisp and clean finish, pleasant carbonation, and minimal alcohol presence. Bitterness is surprisingly low as well.

D - A very nice beer that straddles the line between IPA and IIPA. Eminently drinkable, but didn't wow me quite as much as I expected. A few years ago this would have been a slam-dunk for Top 10 but these days it's merely a very good IPA from an area of the country that has a lot of killer options.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.07/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

64 oz. growler poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Pours without much of a head. Wispy on the surface and a few bubbles at the edge.

Smell - Piney, resiny hops. Very nice. Some grapefruit too. Not my favorite hop profile, but it smells great.

Taste - Bright resiny hop, a bit more citrus here. Some slightly grainy malts back there, almost no sweetness. Dry bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Dry, medium bodied, low carbonation. That's probably the growler. I could drink a few glasses of this.

Overall - I don't love the hop profile, but I can't deny that it's a very well made IPA.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.42/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: poured a golden orange in color with yellow highlights and A nice finger of head that left some good bubbly lacing sticking to the glass.

S: nice piney floral hoppy profile with citrus grapefruit present, faint bready malts sweetness, pineapple fruit, hints of mango and slight grass aroma.

T: the hop profile was just as prominent on the palate consisting of earhty, grassy, piney, and floral traits, plenty of tropical fruit flavor, a good bready malty sweetness that balanced out this hoppy bomb, nice citrusy grapefruit that helped on the bitterness and pineapple accents.

M: the brew was medium in body with good amount of carbonation which had a fruity, hoppy, piney, citrusy, bready malty, bitter and oily finish.

O: very good IPA I must say. I didn't think it was going to be that good but was proved wrong.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.62/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


On tap at Society. IPA made with Nelson and Citra. That's all I know.

A: Yellow gold with an inch of white froth. Nice color and good clarity. Solid head retention and lots of scattered lacing.

S: Big white grape and gooseberry Nelson profile with mango, guava, orange, and grapefruit. Floral aromatics blend with earth and crackery malt. The hop aroma is outstanding.

T: White grape with mango, nectarine, gooseberry, and lightly spicy grapefruit. The fruit is mouthwatering and juicy. Apparently blending Nelson and Citra makes for an awesome flavor. Smooth moderate bitterness. Malt is crackery and lightly biscuity. The beer is dry with no alcohol flavor. Bitterness waxes in the finish.

M: Lower medium body with upper medium carbonation. Dry and sticky mouthfeel.

Overall: If you like Alpine's Nelson you'll love this. Excellent and highly drinkable. To me this is a step above The Apprentice. I immediately got a growler of this after my first glass.


6/2/2012 - Had this from the growler and I'm dropping the flavor by .5.


6/22/2012 - Had another glass at the brewery and I'm raising the score back to the original.


7/20/12 - I guess I'm updating my score again. The second batch of this beer is even better than the first batch. Apparently they wanted to take the beer in a different direction and go heavier on the Nelson. I'm going to be conservative and just improve the nose, but this second batch blew me away. By far my favorite beer from Societe.


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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured a crystal clear light orangish color with great carbonation coming from the growler. A moderate fluffy white head with some decent lacing.

S: Nose is very fresh and juicy citrus. Loads of citrus and tropical fruits with some underlying pine notes.

T: A nice dry, super clean citrusy note upfront with some tropical fruit, light dank and some pine needles. This beer is very fresh and immensely flavorful. It is dry from start to finish with a slight dry bittering hop profile. The booze is light and well masked, barely even noticed it.

M: Lighter bodied, all hops here, well carbonated. The plate and mouthfeel is once again all sorts of fruits. No slickness here. This beer is very clean which makes it so enjoyable.

O: This IPA was fantastic. Easy to drink and clean. One thing I always love about HF IPAs is the cleanliness and clarity of their beers. This beer has that just on a different coast. Well crafted!

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Photo of corby112
4.42/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Draft at Hamilton's Tavern in San Diego, CA. March, 2013.

Pours a very hazy, pale golden straw yellow color with banana hues and a 1.5 finger frothy, pillowy white head.  Nice retention, slowly settling into a thick, lasting ring.  The pint is left coated with streaks of soapy lacing.

Dank floral hop aroma with grassy pine and a ton of tropical/citrus fruit.  Pale biscuity malt backbone with cracker, bread and light fruit.  Resinous oils, dank buds and pine followed by hints of grapefruit, pineapple and lemon peel.  The earthy and sweet hop notes are countered by biscuit, bread and graham cracker.  

Medium bodied with a crisp, spicy hop bite that lingers throughout.  The mouthfeel is perfect. Light enough to pound  yet a touch creamy with a complex hop profile and subtle pale malt presence. Dry, dank and bitter up front with a perfect fruit presence.  Not overly tropical/citrusy like some other WCIPAs but just enough for great balance.  Some pineapple and grapefruit sweetness along with subtle citrus rind.  Pale malt backbone with biscuit, bread and cracker flavors that don't interfere with the fresh hop character.  This is a great IPA that very refreshing and easy to drink without giving up any complexity.  I would drink this beer all of the time given the chance.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Drank this on tap at Churchill's in November 2012, then at the Societe taproom in February 2013.

Big time yellow pour, tons of haze, small 1/3" head on the top. Some of these mega hopped SD west coast ipa's now look eerily similar to a hefeweizen (albeit without the same head, lacing or retention).

Aroma, huge, the best of both worlds, you get the citra and the nelson hops in all their glory. Name the fruit, you can probably close your eyes and envision it in this beer. Mango, guava, pine, pineapple. Pretty much every tropical type of fruit out there, comes out in the nose (and taste, but more about that in a sec). I smelled the shit out of this beer, ramping up expectations until I could actually taste it.

The taste is very smooth, for all the hop glory in this, it has zero abrasive bitterness to it. Extremely light and dry cracker like malt addition to just stay the hell out of the way of the hops. Juicy. Alcohol is nowhere to be found. Very light bodied, high hopped, low bitterness libation. Tangerine and mango just rolls off the tongue. Very reminiscient of Pliny and Alpine.

This is the #1 beer you haven't drank. This is now a must stop spot when in San Diego. If it was anywhere else in the world, it would be the talk of the town, homerism effects etc. . . but since its SD, there's plenty of stuff to divide loyalties and keep these guys under the radar on the national scene.

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Photo of JohnParadee
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Unfortunately, this pour from growler was mostly flat...a gift from a good friend who just wanted to share the opportunity, but alas, by the time I had it, the beer had lost a lot of its freshness and punch. Looking forward to trying it again, but more fresh.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.49/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Societe. The belle of their lineup.

Big pungent tropical fruit and citrus nose, with a blend of pineapple, mango, ripe tangelos, juicy, tangy and fragrant, intense and pure in expression. The palate is rather devoid of malt, focusing instead on the resiny and pungency that hops can bring(yay!), intensely fruity and moderately bitter. Long, drying, resiny finish with really oily Minneola-like fruity, tangy, brightness. Most excellent.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.28/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very clean tasting ipa. Best way I can describe it. Juicy tropical fruit notes, almost non existent malt backbone and perfect level of bitterness. Super balanced and drinkable.

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Photo of dar482
3.98/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

The aroma offers bready malt, pine, resin, grapefruit, very malty on the aroma. Reminiscent of some breadier IPA like from 3 Floyds or Pipeworks.

The flavor follows of grapefruit, lots of bready malt, a medium sweetness, drying pine and grass on the finish. It's a clean brew, but a relatively unexciting IPA from a bygone era.

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Photo of maximum12
4.35/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes, I had this in the Societe tasting room. Taking a break from a long work week, I decided to spend the weekend in San Diego, & this place was at the top of my list of places to visit.

The pour is a very light yellow, like that big ball of fire in the sky we haven’t seen in weeks during a Minnesota February. Lacy, if you care about that sort of thing. Big tropical fruit & citrus nose puts me on notice: this ain’t no Midwest IPA. It whispers sweetly…nothings? Let’s see.

The Pupil I wasn’t digging after a couple of sips, but opens up like a Silversun Pickups album after a few sips. Rough pineapple & mango assault the senses immediately, stunning the tongue into silence & confusion. After a pause to collect my taste buds, I go back in. The fruit is followed by a bracing bitterness that scours the mouthskin like steel wool. Good, loving steel wool. And the bitterness just builds from there, until I’m casting about for a palate cleanser. So good, this is the one Societe beer that I went back for more. Mmmmm.

At first I thought this was a slow kid zone, but as it warmed, this beer gained mad respect. Anybody who can get the bright fruit & a wicked bitterness knows what they’re doing. Excellent & very close to world-class.

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Photo of ArrogantB
4/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at O'Brien's. Seemed like a good opportunity to tick so I ordered it. Looks sort of yellow but then it was nighttime at O'Brien's so I can't be 100% sure. Smelled quite interesting, a real melange of hoppiness, dank, west coast. Flavor sort of diverged from the aroma, very bitter though and as it warmed a bit of lemon goodness. Overall this was a good IPA, hopefully they bottle this in the future.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.52/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

i cannot begin to express my appreciation to beachstrength49 (cwhittle on IG) for sending me a full growler of this magical elixir as well as the properglassware to go with it (and sent in one of those stainless steel growlers no less!)

a - brew poured a semi transparent yellow with a thin fizzy head that didn't last long...definitely carbonated though (which i was slightly concerned about since the growler leaked a bit in transit (when i opened it there was about an ounce of space, but opened with lots of pressure).

s - in a word dank. resiny. pine coney. tropical...thick and rich.

t - WOW! i mean !!!!WOW!!!! again dank freshness. tropical thickness. resin. pine cones. just fantastic. the definition of a west coast ipa. just amazing.

m - nice subtle bitterness and a rich body. fairly dank, but not overdone.

o - overall, this is impressive. this one hangs with the big boys. for a single ipa, i can't think of many beers that hit it as spot on as this one.

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Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.53/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bug thanks to ehammond1 for this growler...

A: Pours a light gold, slightly murky, with one full finger of fluffy white head. The foam takes forever to settle, and thee is a ton of lacing as this bee drinks. The look of this beer is stunning.

S: The nose is really nice. Fresh hop vegetal, pine, and lime citrus. Really nice.

T: It starts off wet and refreshing with some really nice fresh hop flavor. It's bright and crisp with muted vegetation. As it moves to the back end, it gets sweet while simultaniously bringing out lime citrus and pine notes. The finish is big hops, but nothing astringent or burning.

M: Light bodied beer. Light and refreshing to start, hoppy and assertive, but not overwhelming. Super drinkable IPA. You'd think the abv of this beer was significantly less than 7.5%.

O: I am a fan. This beer is super drinkable, packed with delicious favor, and it looks beautiful. This one is a winner. I wish I could have more of this in my life.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.31/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Cocina Urbana in San Diego, CA. Also had this on tap at Societe the day before. Either way, this was served in a pint glass 12/15/2014.

A- Clear yellow, with a hint of orange and copper hue, half finger white head with nice retention time and lots of lacing. It looks especially refreshing.

S- Clean pine and grapefruit aromas, very minimal pale malt dryness. Not grainy or overly sweet. Just clean hoppiness. Not complicated at all, which I appreciate.

F- Citrus, grapefruit, pine. Straight up hops, with a very basic pale malt backbone acting as a blank canvas for the hop additions. Bitter pine on the finish that isn't resinous at all. It is all hop flavour rather than hop resins.

M- Medium bodied, although on the thinner side. Finishes very dry, as expected of the west coast style. Bitter pine finish that is clean without the resinous nature that a lot of beers bring.

O- Very nice example of the West Coast style IPA. Clean hoppiness with minimal resin and high attenuation, leaving a bone dry finish that remains refreshing. Very nice IPA.

Final score: 4.30

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.51/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On tap at The Local in San Diego. Pours a slightly hazy yellow. Big time tropical fruit aromas wafting up, with some light pine and sweetness. Flavor has big pineapple notes, some bitter grapefruit mixed in, a hint of raw vegetal hops (love this flavor), and a nice sweetness on the finish. Very light bodied with high carbonation. My first from Societe and this was an excellent brew with loads of refreshing tropical fruit.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.43/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16oz glass on-tap at The Rare Barrel.

A: Served a light clear golden straw color with a greasy bright white head that faded into a faint scum. Great sticky rings of lace were left down the glass.
S: Passion fruits and tropical hop notes are strong. There's also some slight wintergreen mint and something more herbal. Very fruity smelling.
T: Huge tropical fruit nectar hops follow the nose. Very juicy, sweet, and fruity. There's a touch of pale grainy malt in the finish, but not much. I also get flavors of mango, tangerine, and touch of pepper. The aftertaste is slightly herbal and maybe minty, but overall the fruit lingers all the way through.
M: Very clean with a drying finish; medium body with a nice greasy hop oiliness to it. Smooth and subtle carbonation. Not especially bitter.
O: An amazing ipa, and one of the better ones I've had in recent memory. I would love to drink this often.

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Photo of FosterJM
4.27/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

1797th Review on BA
Growler to Societe Goblet

App- Super light like a hazy wheat beer with a nice big white head. I am really surprised by the color on this one. A good head with frothy white bubbles. A good amount of sticky cling.

Smell- Tropical fruits and wheaty hops. The aroma is very light with the almost wheat beer esque aroma taking over. I get some pineapple, some wheat, some grass and a little bit of lemon peel on the nose.

Taste- I have noticed the last few IPAs I have had have been on the smaller flavor profile but wonderfully layered. I like how this has the tropical fruits with the pineapple, mango and lemon. The balance of the wheat and hops are striking to me. I like the flavor on this one. Different is definitely good.

Mouth- A smaller medium body with a medium carbonation level on this. The residual flavors of wheat, pineapple and lemon peel are quite nice. A smaller grassy flavor remains as well.

Drink- I can say this is one of a kind. A full growler IMO is the way to go. A glass just doesnt cut it really. I was very glad I made the trek back down to try this one. I will be sure to bring my growler back.

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The Pupil from Societe Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 75 ratings.