Ale To The Chief - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Ale To The ChiefAle To The Chief

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BA SCORE
90
outstanding

502 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

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Ratings: 502
Reviews: 378
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.15%
Wants: 25
Gots: 11 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed occasionally during election years.

(Beer added by: GilGarp on 07-22-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 502 | Reviews: 378 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rab53
3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

Photo of goatgoat
3.28/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber that pours with a thick creamy tan head which falls quickly to a thin cap. Very little lacing on glass. Aroma is strong earthy spice and citrus hops with a slight honeyish malt. Also a tint of alcohol. Flavor is more balanced than most double IPAs. Maybe because Avery bills it as a double pale, or possibly because of age. The hops are moderated by the malt, producing a pretty balanced flavor. The bitterness doesn't really pull in front until fairly late, keeping on in the aftertaste. Medium body.

A little light for a DIPA. I expect an over the top experience from this style and I didn't really get that.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.28/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazy, amber-hued body with a wispy, white head.

Smell: Aroma of juice-dripping tropical fruits ahead of the pale maltiness, hint of grass, and minor note of Oval Office dankness.

Taste: Pale and caramel malts with a sugary, candyish sweetness. A bit grassy. Fruity mix of tangerines, melons, and pineapples, then WHAM -- bitterness, a moderate hop bitterness, maybe even moreso. Light undercurrent of astringency. Finishes quite bitter, with a lingering taste of tropical fruits.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Oily, slightly sticky mouthfeel.

Drinkability: I vote 'no' on this hopferendum. Geez, could you imagine struggling through 8 years of this one?

Photo of vtfan77
3.28/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a light gold with an orange tinge and a decent off-white head that only sticks around for a few seconds.

S- Nice hoppy aroma with pine, sweet oranges, and a touch of alcohol.

T- There's a touch of sweetness upfront but the beer quickly dries out as the hops come in. The hop flavor is kind of hard to pick up; maybe a little pine sap, maybe some citrus... I can tell it's there, I just can't put my finger on what it tastes like. The nearly 9% abv is quite noticeable at times. The finish brings a moderate bitterness, lower than it seems like it should be. Overall, the flavor is pretty bland.

M- Medium-bodied with decent carbonation.

D- Too alcoholic and not enough flavor to keep me interested. I'd definitely stop at one.

I'd have to say this was a bit of a disappointment. Almost everything I've had from Avery to this point has been great, so I was expecting good things from this beer. What I got was a run-of-the-mill IPA with not a lot of flavor. It certainly wasn't horrible, but it's not even close to Maharaja, and I won't be getting it again. I wouldn't recommend it.

Photo of selecter70
3.3/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I grabbed one of these in November, awaiting Inauguration Day, as the bottle cellared awaiting me! The excitment & anticipation was I think, the best element to this no so exceptional IPA style ale. The pour was a vibrant & bright pale orange with 2 finger head that snuck away soon, leaving white lace & a floral-grass hoppy aroma. The mouth was smooth and the flavor a strong but not bitter hops, with heathery grass & lemon tones. Nice IPA but sadly not everything I hoped the Inauguration would bring!

Photo of number1bum
3.33/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a burnt orange amber color with a slight haze to it and three fingers of creamy light beige head. Lacing is very good, with a thick and very full lace and a ton of stick on the sides.

Smell is full of resiny pine, as well as earthy and bitter grapefruit hop aromas. Big malt presence as well, with bready and toasty grain as well as some caramel.

Taste starts off ok, with some caramel sweetness, toasted malt and a blast of pine. Midway through it starts to go downhill, however, with a gritty, very earthy and otherwise off flavor that I can't completely place. It becomes most acute in the finish, which is very bitter and tastes of soap scum, dirt and metal. I found myself needing to cleanse my mouth with another sip, the first half of which is pretty good, or a splash of water to wash the bitter, unpleasant aftertaste from my mouth. This off flavor really killed this one for me; it was so persistent that even a 3.5 was too high.

Mouthfeel is a bit more than medium bodied and pretty creamy, but not all that smooth owing to the gritty, dirty off flavor in the finish. Has a bit of a slick, oily feel to it but finishes chalky and somewhat dry.

Whether this is a DIPA, IPA, Pale Ale or somewhere in between two of the three, I must admit to being disappointed by this one. I'm a huge fan of Maharaja and Avery in general, but the off flavor in this one was unexpected and unpleasant. It's an ok beer, but doesn't come close to Avery's typical standard. I have another bottle in the fridge to share with my dad this weekend, so if this bottle seemed to be an anomaly I will revisit as appropriate. If not, I won't revisit this one again.

Photo of myost88
3.33/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bomber into Tulip pint.

Appearance: Copper along the edges with a reddishe hue center. Two finger. Very cloudy. Excellent lacing like tinsel strung on a christmas tree.

Smell: Citrus hop aroma dominates the smell. Huge sweet malty presence as well. Slight floral aroma. It smells great to be honest.

Taste: Hops are almost nonexistant, though to be fair I am drinking this almost a year old. Very sweet is the only way to describe this. It's almost sugary. I would think this one was always on the sweet side. Were this an amber ale, the taste would have been spectacular. But as it is an IPA it is no longer appropriate for the style.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth. Not highly carbed and peppery like many IPAs. I have to say this has aged very well in this regard.

Drinkability: Alcohol remains well hidden. Proof that the malt profile was and remains remarkable. At almost 9 percent, one bomber is plenty. Gulping is appropriate.

Overall: I have given this beer marks which I believe to be fair. It is no longer hoppy as one would think, but I believe that to be an aging issue. I still thoroughly enjoyed drinking this beer. Had this been an Amber Ale I suspect it would have received top marks. If you still have some, I recommend you drink it ASAP as age will not benefit it any longer.

Photo of illidurit
3.35/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bomber shared at the July Santa Cruz tasting. Pours hazy bronze with a light tan head. Aroma is chiefly caramel malts and aged hops, a bit dusty but still with some life to it. Flavor displays some big pineapple notes, just as strong and hoppy as a lot of fresh double IPAs. There is however plenty of aged character with muddled crystal and caramel malts and mild isovaleric notes. Respectable bitterness, heavy syrupy body. Not bad for an ancient DIPA.

Photo of HalfFull
3.38/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours on opaque orange amber into a pint glass with a frothy half inch head. This beer has very little smell initially(served rather chilled) yet opens up as the beer warms. Notes of caramel malts and light hops initially. Yet Belgian yeasts soon dominate.

Taste is somewhat malty, yet this is no Maharaja, and that is a good thing. Not nearly as complex in the malts nor as sweet as Maharaja, this brew offers a nicely balanced malt structure. And with a touch of Belgian yeast sourness. Anyway, that aside I find this brew neither enticing nor enthralling.

I would consider this to be an oddball of an American DIPA and more of a Belgian IPA with a well disguised ABV, perhaps a 'White Rascal' on malted steroids.

Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.4/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - this Avery beer pours an amber/copper color with a thin light tan head and average amounts of visible carbonation

S - aroma is pretty basic, the hops have faded a bit as this is about 8-10 months old, but still balance the malts pretty well, there is another characteristic that my buddy and i cannot place, and some background sweetness

T - the roasted malts lend a particular nuttiness to the flavor, which are dominant over the hop profile, which has been diminished some over time, also a rich sweetness, like molasses or brown sugar

M&D - smooth, time has mellowed the hops to balance the malts into nearly a light barleywine-esque-ness, it was smooth and medium bodied, even after time, this is a nice beer

Photo of jbphoto88
3.43/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Behind a smart and witty label lies a 22oz bottle that contains the 2008 Avery offering. The pour yields a cloudy haze of a beer that is amber/ orange in color with a thick white head. Some nice webbing coats the edge of the glass.

The scent is sweet and hoppy. It smells like one great IPA with layered hop scents like grapefruit and other citrus like fruits mixed with a little floral earthiness. There is also a freshly milled pale malt scent that is very nice. I can't wait to drink this beer.

I wouldn't say the taste is a disappointment, its just not this beer's best feature. There is a solid malt backbone that initially assaults the taste buds but it is quickly eclipsed by a strong astringency that basically over powers everything else. A shame because there is a nice underlying floral and citrus flavor that should be more available to the palate. The finish is a malty apology for the overall bitterness but you have to wait for the bite to subside.

I wish this one followed through on the flavor. The taste and mouthfeel really drop the ball. It has an unbalanced bitterness that obliterates all the great malt and citrus flavors. Almost unbelievable that the smell of this beer doesn't deliver in the flavor department. What a shame. Despite the one sided aspect this beer isn't to bad of a drinking experience. Its worth buying for the scent alone and by the time you get to the bottom of the glass you won't notice the Über bitterness.

Photo of Murchmac
3.43/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a one finger head nice lacing, golden orange. Like the doilies on the lincoln bedrooms couch.

Burst of hops hits your nose like the secret service bum rushing you. Malt, straw, lemon?

Sweet floral, sweet hops, not too full bodied. A little thin. More Paula Jones than Monica Lewinsky.

Some burning alcohol finsh. Some sweetness.

Overall an ok beer. I think it says its a double pale ale, kinda confusing, like how our current regime gets away with what it does.

Photo of damienblack
3.43/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Big thanks to HopsAreOverrated for getting this to me by Inauguration Eve!

Pours medium golden brown, with a spiral jet of air weaving its way up the center of my goblet. Big light-peach head is sticky, doesn't leave much lacing. Yet it smells soapy. Slick. soapy and flowery, with the smell of a mango-like tropical fruit backing a big pine scent. To my untrained nose, the soapy smells dominate, and the hops and things I should be smelling take a back seat. I'm not the biggest fan of IPAs, so this will be interesting.

First impressions: Slick and soapy. Malts lead to a slightly sweet body before the hops kick in. It's not a hop bomb by any stretch, once that grapefruity pineyness kicks in, its a slow burn to the finish as the alcohol also makes itself very evident. There's a lot going on here. As time goes on, it makes for a better experience, but to me, the soapiness up front detracts from the experience. I'd rather it be drier, and without the cloying stickiness/soap taste. Nevertheless, I'd give it "good but not great" marks across the board. If you can look past that facet, I like how the hop sensation lingers without overloading you. Medium bodied, good carbonation and feel, and for me, okay drinkability (even though it's a sipper here), as it really takes a hit with the unpleasant soapiness.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.45/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a four-finger thick, frothy, light tan colored head. The beer is a bright, amber-copper hue that shows a full copper hue when held up to the light. The aroma is clearly hop focused with stick ruby-red grapefruit notes, lighter lychee, sweetened orange zest, a touch of tart grapefruit towards the middle / end and some not quite ripe orange notes. The malt character provides a dusty, crushed cracker, pale malt note that has just a touch of a snap to the finish.

Much stickier and sweeter than I was expecting, the body is quite viscous and thick as well. This definitely has the heft of a Barleywine to it. The amply sweet malt definitely accentuates hop flavors of lychee, tropical fruit, ripe peaches, and sweet orange zest. A touch of warming alcohol, some toasty pale malt and medium bitterness that is not enough to cut through the sticky malt are all present in the finish. A touch of pine is noticeable towards the finish as well, though it seems to get drowned out by the sweet malt character at times. This is a very clean beer, almost devoid of yeast character, which is to be expected from Avery.

I wasn't expecting this to be quite so sweet as it is, it is not bad, but I expected something calling itself a "Pale Ale" to try and capture the drinkability of said beer, even if it is an amp'd up version. The vibrant hop character is nice, but it can't hide the overt sweetness. This does get quite a bit less sticky as it warms up from its initial 50°F / 10°C serving temperature, but it is still a bit much.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

Photo of scottfrie
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into Duvel tulip. Old, but worth a shot.

A: Pours a deep amber with a thick, slightly oily tan head that slowly faded into a thin film that left a sheet of sticky lacing down the glass.
S: Strong scent of citrus hops. Notes of lemon and caramel malt.
T: The hops have faded a bit with this one. Notes of caramel malt, alcohol, sweet fruits, orange rind, and lemon zest. This very much tastes like a barleywine. As another reviewer put it, I guess that's what over a year and a half does to this beer. The hops lend a touch of bitterness to the finish.
M: Medium syrupy-slick body with a wet finish and tingly carbonation. The alcohol is noticeable in the finish with a touch of warmth.
D: I wish I hadn't waited so long to drink this one because now it really does taste like a barleywine. As a barleywine though, it's not bad, but this isn't the greatest beer.

Photo of sonicdescent
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

In Celebration of our chief's speech!

Pours a beautiful golden color with some thick fluffy head that leaves great lacing.

Smell is unusually weak. I smell citrus hops but it is barely there.

Taste is not weak, in fact one of the more robust dipas that I have had. Very bitter with citrus hops.

Mouth is medium in both carbonation and body.

Drinkability is low as this is kind of harsh after more than a few sips.

Photo of jjanega08
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A= darker orange color hinting on brown. Decent lacing and a respectable head that falls quickly to a ring.
S= resiny pine and citrus hops. Grassy with a little malt sweetness coming through.
T= just like the smell with the tasty hops. Some alcohol is detected late.
M= Good. Less creamy than most doubles however.
D= pretty high. This beer was ok... Not totally impressed with it but I suppose it was worth trying. This is my first from Avery and prolly not my last. I won't buy this one again but I can see myself exploring more of their beers.

Photo of alkemy
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

(From notes)Hazy orange/copper with a big whipped off white head. Hops is there, but in an earthy pine and orange scent. The caramel malts dominate. Taste is much of the same. This may or may not be the brewer's intention. After all, this beer was brewed some 10 months ago so I'm sure the hop character is not as it was at that time. Some odd flavors here and there. Hints of honey and maybe grilled pineapple. Liked the slick feel, but just couldn't get totally into this.

Photo of theCoder
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of BRLockwood
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of Hellpop65
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of ms11781
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of ScottyC54
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev -13.4%

Ale To The Chief from Avery Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 502 ratings.