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Ascension - The Tap Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

32 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 32
Reviews: 27
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 13.66%
Wants: 0
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
The Tap Brewing Company visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 06-21-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 32 | Reviews: 27 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by PSUDREW:
Photo of PSUDREW


3.53/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to DrDogBeer for this
A: Pours a hazy golden color, little bit of carbonation, no real head to speak of
S: Spicy nose. Big dose of yeast in there. some malt odors as well.
T: Big peppery taste up front. followed by a bready sweetness. There is a herbal finish with hints of mint. the hop flavors continue throughout.
M: ok. nothing really to note
D: pretty descent all in all

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2010 02:02:52 | More by PSUDREW
More User Reviews:
Photo of Slatetank


4/5  rDev +9.3%

05-28-2013 16:47:56 | More by Slatetank
Photo of ms11781


3/5  rDev -18%

07-01-2012 03:27:37 | More by ms11781
Photo of cashbrook


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

02-24-2012 20:38:30 | More by cashbrook
Photo of PEIhop


4/5  rDev +9.3%

11-19-2011 19:04:21 | More by PEIhop
Photo of Flounder57


3.58/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked up this bottle when I was up at the Nerzx industry event last Friday. 22 oz bottle was poured into a Stella glass

Appearance: A hazy golden yellow with a one finger head that reduced to a thin layer. Tiny little bubbles are slightly noticeable. Some nice lacing on the glass too.

Smell: bready grains and malt, some sweet honey, yeasty aromas, and hints of apple and bear.

Taste: Bready, sweet honey, apples, pears, spiciness from the hops is very strog compared to everything else going on. Some bitterness towards the end too.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium bodied, slightly chewy, medium to high carbonation. I had no problems drinking this beer too.

Overall: This is a decent BIPA that might need a little more maltiness to balance off the hops overload. Still enjoyable though and will be drinking more in the future.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2011 03:48:02 | More by Flounder57
Photo of UncleJimbo


4/5  rDev +9.3%

11-15-2011 03:17:33 | More by UncleJimbo
Photo of rowingbrewer


4.03/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a light golden straw color with a huge off white head with fairly good retention. There is anniversary lasingmleft on the glass as the head recedes. The smell is lightly hoppy with earthy hops and a good dose of Belgian yeast notes as well as a bread scent to it. The flavor is again earthy hops witha sweet smooth Belgian flavor and ammild bitterness. The beer is rich and medium bodied with high carbonation. The beer is smooth and very drinkable. I will be drinking more Of this at the pub in the near future.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2011 21:43:16 | More by rowingbrewer
Photo of VelvetExtract


3.05/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ascension from Haverhill...right in the backyard.

A-Looks alright. Light orange color. Nice head.

S-Not overly hoppy. Smells yeasty which is expected. Unique smell but I didn't love it.

T-I much prefer American IPAs, specifically West Coast IPAs. This beer confirms my preferences. The beer is quite complex yet not exceptionally satisfying. Pretty bitter and spicy. Just not my flavor of choice.

M-Well carbonated with the standard medium body.

D-I wouldn't ask for more than one of these. But worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2010 22:27:00 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

3.25/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: The beer was a gusher, but pours a cloudy amber with a two finger head that has some stickage going on and leaves a few shards of lace

Smell: Rather malty aroma, with bread and candi sugar, up front, and some grassy hops on the back

Taste: Bready, sweet and grassy, which makes for a rough marriage, particularly as some herbal elements kick in at mid-palate; the finish is sweeter than expected, as well

Mouthfeel: Medium body with high carbonation

Drinkability: All over the place and more like a tripel than a Belgian IPA

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2010 19:04:37 | More by brentk56
Photo of ToasterChef


4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from my notes. Somehow Novare Res was able to get a keg of this...I took a few notes to record my impressions.

The beer is opaque orange. There is a small white head of tiny bubbles.

It has a sweet, candi sugar aroma. It's refreshingly crisp with a nice hint of malt sweetness.

The beer tastes sweet, not too strongly; it's at a good level. The bitterness makes an appearance in the finish. It's acidic and fruity.

It's body is on the lighter side of medium while the carbonation is slightly higher than average. There wasn't much coating left in my mouth.

It's drinkability is above average but not amazing. There were a few flavors that would be hard to intake repeatedly over the course of an evening, but this one glass is quite enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

04-27-2010 14:37:26 | More by ToasterChef
Photo of MisterSH


3.73/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A few days ago I really enjoyed haverhill's joshua norton. Tonight I'm trying ascension.

Pouring the 22oz into a tulip glass. Pours a rich straw gold with a bubbly finger head. A fine looking brew indeed.

Wow, a great nose on this thing. Noble hops and yeast are my first impressions. I'm catching wiffs of dark, ripe fruit, perhaps some green apples. Also a sort of creamy vanilla in there. Slightly citric, predominantly herbal hop aroma. A hint of bubblegum.

First taste reveals a strong hop bitterness, with a fruity sweet note, and a fascinating aftertase that flashes between a cracker-like bready malt, citric hops, and sweet belgian-yeast inspired flavors. More drinking reveals a strong malt backbone in this beer, delicious. Hoppiness is not quite as herbal as I was expecting, there is distinct grapefruit and pinyness to it, but certainly the overall impression is of the noble saaz. The bottle had me expecting a spicy IPA, which this is really not. Any peppery notes the belgian yeast imparts are balanced nicely by the noble hops and the result is that there is no "stand out" belgian spice flavor, instead everything is quite clean and well-integrated. There is definitely a hint of sweet bubblegum, but again the malt is surprisingly assertive and overrides the sweetness from becoming too noticeable. The finish, which I initially described as a crackery malt, might actually be a combination of tastes accentuated by the belgian yeast. It reminds me of those black pepper crackers.
Alcohol is pretty subtle, but is noticeable on the finish and leaves a nice warmth on the palate.

Feels great on the tongue. Moderate carbonation balances what might otherwise be a slightly viscous brew.

Very drinkable. Things are really well balanced here, unusually so. This is one of those beers that presents you with a huge bouquet of flavors, but it's hard to identify each one individually as they are all so subtle and well-balanced that they play off each other and create one cohesive whole. At 7.3%, it's not a exactly huge beer, and it goes down so easily I'll have no problem finishing this bomber and wouldn't hesitate to crack another. Will definitely be having this again.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2010 03:59:43 | More by MisterSH
Photo of afausser


4.38/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a very deep amber orange with a nice finger of head that turns into a nice thin ring and sheet across the top of the brew. Decent if average lacing.

S: Extremely malty and sour, with a slight yeasty and biscuity scent in the nose. There's also a nice amount of cream and malts. Biscuity and yeasty sweet notes.

Taste: incredibly sugary and honey taste. Very nice, crisp, and simple, green apples blending very nicely with the honey.

M: very smooth, nice, and crisp, actually feels like crisp apples, very persistent tiny bubbles.

D: Quite drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2010 16:18:59 | More by afausser
Photo of wenkalman


4.38/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a tulip glass.

The first time I had this brew was on tap at the Tap in Haverhill, MA. I was so bummed to find out it was a limitd release, and I looked all over for it. Finally, months later; I stumbled across two bottle of it at Marty's in Needham, MA. So of course I picked them both up.

I am writing this review several days after having both bottles with a good buddy of mine (who happened to be the guy with me when I first discovered this beer) so I am going to refrain from a normal review.

Simply put, this is the best Belgian IPA I have found so far, and believe me; I have been looking at others. I am really hoping the brewers at Haverhil Brewing Co decide to brew this one at least seasonally.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2009 20:53:30 | More by wenkalman
Photo of alleykatking


3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Can't remember for the life of me who sent this to me but I finally cracked it the other night. From my notes:

A- Pours a nice semi-hazy golden orange color. Two finger slight off white head dies down in a minute leaving nice lacing rings on the sides of the glass.

S- The nose is a little muted I think but this could be from it being bottled a few months ago (6 I think). There is a light floral aroma from the hops along with a distinct Belgian biscuty yeast smell. Nothing really else I could pick up.

T- This is a bit more hoppy than what I first expected with the taste. Nice light floral and bitter hops crash into the palate followed by a good Belgian yeasty taste. Not too much in this maybe some light sweet malts in the middle of the beer.

M- This was a medium mouthfeel. Perfect carbonation levels for me. Almost creamy mouthfeel on the palate. Clean IPA/Belgian taste in this along with the aftertaste. Couldn't have been more happy with this.

D- This is very drinkable. I think the bomber was gone before I even knew it. Sadly, I don't have any more.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2009 03:30:12 | More by alleykatking
Photo of gfreed


2.38/5  rDev -35%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This has a bit more ascending to do for my taste. Nice cloudy amber color with a noisy, bubbly head that, while not very dense, lasted a surprisingly long time. There's a soapy aroma that's evident from several inches away, and it overpowers whatever other smells might be available-- is that apple? A little orange? Can't tell. Same with the taste: there's a hint of fruit and some yeasty malt, all overpowered by soap. Alcohol is also very strong, which gives a sour mushroom flavor. Also one of the more gassy (as opposed to fizzy) beers I've had in a long while. Gas, soap, booze and mushrooms. Next!

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2009 00:53:48 | More by gfreed
Photo of BuckeyeNation


4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bright kumquat orange with crystalline clarity... on the first pour and all subsequent pours. Atop the beer sits three fingers of alabaster colored foam that has a quality texture, even if it isn't exactly Belgianesque. Delicate sheets of stippled lace look fine and dandy too.

The nose isn't quite hoppy enough for the style. This ale was bottled exactly 5 months ago (April 20th), so the Saaz hops should still be impressively aromatic... assuming they were to begin with. Other ingredients include French malts and Belgian yeast. There isn't much Belgian yeastiness either.

Thankfully, Ascension Belgian Style India Pale Ale tastes hoppier than it smells. I don't know about 'massive amounts', as the brewery claims, but there's easily enough for the IPA designation. I would have picked something other than Saaz, but that's me. A more estery yeast strain would have helped as well.

Flavors include sugary pale malts, bitter grasses, snappy apples and pears, a miniscule hint of bubblegum and a surprising amount of white pepper pepperiness. The alpha acid load is still considerable, with an estimated IBU count of at least 50. Hopheads will enjoy a wee bit of tongue abuse. Don't wait much longer to drink it if you're hanging onto a bomber.

Although my first several mouthfuls had a solid 3.5 for flavor in their crosshairs, I'm now thinking 4.0. Solid malt support and a generous amount of hops (no matter what variety) get me every time. This stuff would be killer with something like Simcoe. Hey, Saaz aren't Belgian either.

The mouthfeel holds up its end with ease. It's loaded with luscious creaminess and has a sparkly sort of carbonation that matches the peppery and hoppy bite of the flavor profile perfectly.

Even though I'd make a few changes, Haverhill Ascension is a delicious take on the Belgian IPA style. As Leatherlips IPA proves, these guys are no strangers to hoppy beer. Due to a lack of access, I'll probably never drink it again, but those who can... should. Thanks again damienblack.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2009 21:09:56 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of DrJay


3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazed, light amber with a thin cap of off-white bubbles that quickly settled to a collar. Sugary aroma, some honey, bready, with a continental floral hop character that faded into something closer to mild citrus. A little fruitiness appeared as it warmed. Bitterness was on the low side, but had a pleasant citrus character. Bready malt with a hint of spice and orange zest, fairly sweet and a little peppery in the finish. Light, lingering bitterness. Mild alcohol warmth. Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Pretty good overall, but the bitterness was just a bit too low for my tastes.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2009 18:52:38 | More by DrJay
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another new one for me to try this afternoon. I am a big fan of their regular offerings, so was hoping to continue the trend. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 09/07/2009.

Very nice pour, light golden amber in color with a big head of white on top. Took forever to settle down though and the first few pours were on the foamy side I have to say. Aside from that though, nice side glass lacing and a rich look to it overall had me going in for another look. Light aroma, mild hops with a hint of bready notes to it right under the surface. This peeled back into light peach and banana hints the more it warms and a touch of light grain. Flavor was again interesting, bready and grainy at first with hints of lemon and orange sprinkled in. Warming seems to really mellow the hops completely and allow almost a spicy tone to take hold. Interesting. Decent carbonation and a light feel led to it being refreshing and not too heavy on a warm day.

Overall not bad. Not what I was really expecting at all, but I have to admit again, not bad. I would have no issue with trying it again. Very interesting style here and a good effort for sure.

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2009 22:57:45 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of Bierman9

New Hampshire

3.93/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stopped in yesterday (27FEB10) to The Tap with Alewife and Caitlin and had a 12oz glass of this on tap. Was a cloudy, medium golden/copper color. Head was white and thin, mostly at the edges, but lacing was superb. Nose had hopping present, and candyish notes - definitely a Belgian. Medium bodied, it was nice and smooth on the tongue. Flavor had lots of sharp hop bitterness, with the Saaz biting well. It's quite rindy, and there seems to be a hint of mint in there. Finish is a bit peppery, though the hops stick on the palate for a good amount of time. Much better vom Faß than a bottle! Prosit!!

look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | drink: 4

*** *** ***

08SEP09 - Picked up a 22oz bomber about a week ago, and enjoyed it this past Sunday (06Sep) while outside laxing on a warm, late summer day... Label has ingredient descriptions, but no freshness info.

Poured into a snifter, the bier is a touch cloudy, and deep copper in color. Head is off-white, quite creamy, and with fine bubbles creating a little bit of lace. The nose has a touch of toasty malts, with hops being sharp and pungent. Intriguing so far. Body was a middle of the range medium, and the liquid was fairly smooth, overall.

Flavor has some light malt sweetness at the outset. Soon thereafter a lot of rindy, pithy hop characteristics come into play, though it's odd that Saaz hops are bringing this forth. There is present the distinct Saaz spicy bite, though, which lingers long and hard on the palate. Some fruitiness is also in the mix, in the guise of pear and apple. A decent offering, yet nothing earth-shattering here.


look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | drink: 3.5


Serving type: bottle

09-08-2009 13:32:39 | More by Bierman9
Photo of BraveUlysses


3.55/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Ascension fills the glass with a golden-yellow color and cloudy appearance and almost no head. The aroma is almost non-existent; I could not pick up any distinct flavors in the nose at all. The taste, however, is sweet at the front of the tongue with hints of very floral hops (almost flowery) with a lingering bitterness at the back of the throat to remind you that this beer is an IPA. The body is less than full with a fleeting mouthfeel; this is definitely a beer that can be sipped and followed by several others over the course of an evening.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2009 22:28:35 | More by BraveUlysses
Photo of u2carew


3.15/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bomber
A) Pours with a fairly mellow head. Thin and sticky lacing. Some haze. Rust orange in color.
S) Sweet floral notes. Very light grain aroma.
T) Lemon. Caramel. Alcohol. Earthy hop notes. Mellow bitterness in the finish. Grainy.
M) Lightly gritty. Dry. Alcohol effervescence. Medium body.
D) Alright but not a standout.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2009 21:13:23 | More by u2carew
Photo of indiapaleale


4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ascension pours a very dark amber, almost brown in color and rather cloudy and opaque. The head is a nice contrast as its bright white and sits nicely atop this pour.

The aroma is quite interesting. I smell oranges, some other sweet fruit, caramel, some hoppy citrus notes and some of those familiar Belgian yeast notes (banana and clove). Very unique and quite nice smelling.

The taste is very smooth, wow. Its got some nice citrus flavor, both lemon and orange, along with a good amount of sweet, caramel malt and those Belgian yeast flavors. Its a complex beer that is for sure, nothing to pour down your throat without pondering. I really dig this beer, its got a lot of flavors but they all work really well together. There's a nice crisp, dryness in the finish that wraps up each sip quite well.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2009 02:45:18 | More by indiapaleale
Photo of HopHead84


3.53/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Consumed on 8/16/2009 and poured into my Moonlight pint glass. Thanks for the extra jleblanc.

The beer is dark orange with a creamy two finger beige head. Retention is good and some scattered lacing is left behind after the head recedes.

The aroma is sweet caramel and bready malt. The Saaz hops are somewhat restrained, imparting floral notes and some lighter notes of orange and grapefruit. The beer is decidedly Belgian, which is evident by the yeast. It's also quite spicy, with notes of cracked pepper.

The flavor is immediately bitter and slightly sweet. Bitterness is at a medium level, with some Belgian yeast character. The hops impart floral notes and a little citrus. The finish is very spicy, in the form of white pepper at the back of my tongue. The finish has a strange plastic note in it, which I found off-putting at first. I grew somewhat accustomed to it and was able to look past it. It's definitely strange. As the beer warmed I enjoyed it more.

Medium bodied with medium carbonation and a sticky mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2009 03:57:09 | More by HopHead84
Photo of tpd975


2.93/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a rusty sort of brown hue with a tall creamy head. Nice retention and chunky lace.

S: Earthy aromas, with strong Belgian yeast notes and a blast of caramel malt.

T: Just okay. The yeast is there in a big way not really Belgian though. There is a dirt like flavor as well, that I don't like. The finish has a nice dose of bittering hops. Nothing really Belgian or IPA about this one.

M: Medium in body, good carbonation.

D: Not really. Slightly below okay overall.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2009 16:57:58 | More by tpd975
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Ascension from The Tap Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 32 ratings.