Oak Aged Mad Hatter India Pale Ale - New Holland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Oak Aged Mad Hatter India Pale AleOak Aged Mad Hatter India Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

161 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 161
Hads: 489
Avg: 3.71
pDev: 19.68%
Wants: 12
Gots: 43 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.12% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RedHaze on 12-26-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 161 | Hads: 489
Photo of ArrogantB
2/5  rDev -46.1%

A friend shared a bottle of this, I wish he hadn't. Dark orange-amber. Smells malty, oaky. Flavor is oaky, alcohol, actually pretty bad. Drain pour.


 172 characters

Photo of alleykatking
2.45/5  rDev -34%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Had on tap at Fiddler's.

A- Poured a amberish brown color. This one had no real head to it and therefore showed a little leg but no lacing at all.

S- I thought the oak came out in this one pretty good. Actually it seems to overturn most other aromas. Light sugary bitter hops to this as well in the middle to backing. Caramel malts also show up in this but add to the sickley sweetness that kills the aroma for me. To be honest it reminds of me a Southern Tier beer in the aroma.

T- Caramel malts and light sugary floral hops stand out in the this beer in the front. Barrel notes come in next but instead of wood I get more of rotting wood with light earthy dirt. Not very good. This flavor comes through toward the ending where the sweet caramel malts come out once again. Light bitter hopping in the ending can't balance out the flavors overall. Sweet alcohol flavor in the ending kills off any non sweet balancing flavor.

M- Medium-heavy mouthfeel. Carbonation was low for the style. Sweetness from caramel malts along with dirty oak are left on the palate. Aftertaste is sweet alcohol, wiht caramel malts and hints of bitter hops. Flavors were underwhelming and not balanced at all with this beer being more sweet than anything else. No off flavors per say but the oak barrel was pretty bad tasting. Medium alcohol drying on the palate.

O- This was the worst of the Hatter's that I tried that night or well just in general. I would like to see this one done in a fresh clean barrel and see how it turns out. But please for the love of all things holy New Holland stay away from all the sweetness on this beer. It was like a mini Southern Tier beer just not as good.

 1,675 characters

Photo of fear025
2.46/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Aroma:This beer doesn't have much of an aroma, but I do get a little orange.

Appearance:It's a tad bit lighter than the normal Mad Hatter IPA.

Taste:On the first sip of the beer, the oak hit me in the face. It's a musty oak flavor that overshadows the rest of the IPA through the fore and midtastes. The aftertaste does contain some maltyness. Even though this is a bourbon barrel oak, it only has a slight bourbon flavor.

Mouthfeel:A little alcohol burn because of the bourbon, but not too much.

Drinkability:The mustyness imparted by the oak is a little distracting, and hinders the IPA somewhat, compared to the Mad Hatter IPA.

 634 characters

Photo of OneDropSoup
2.48/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Excited to see this bad boy on tap at D's in Monroeville, PA.

Poured a light, brassy orange with gold highlights & about a finger of head. Little lacing (I guess due to the high ABV & oaking?).

Citrus was most prominent in the aroma, that orange & lemon zest that brightens your day. Didn't notice any oak in the nose at first, but halfway through the glass it was about all I could smell.

Taste had a huge oak presence, as well as bitterness from the hops & just straight booze. Now think of this combination: wood, bitter citrus, alcohol. Put it together, stir it around, & you got furniture polish, right? This is really what it started to remind me of after a while. Big flavor, but not necessarily one I enjoyed. The mouthfeel was tannic & drying. Too much!

I had difficulty getting through one of these babies. This feels like a worthwhile experiment, & I applaud New Holland for trying a relatively novel approach to a ubiquitous style, but I don't think it worked out for the better. I can't even say I'm "not impressed" with the taste -- I'm very impressed, overwhelmed even. Experimentation is good, but this is one specimen that mutated, broke free from the lab, & wreaked havoc on my tastebuds.

 1,211 characters

Photo of b3shine
2.61/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deuce to pint (frosty). Appearance was average -at best. Way too clear for its type, with virtually no head. Smell wasn't good. Cheap, wet wood. Taste was sub-par as well. Tastes like a flat, wooded (chipped) Killian's. Mouthfeel was its best attribute, and that's only because it goes down easily. Overall, a MAJOR disappointment.

 331 characters

Photo of jhoban19
2.71/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap, poured into a New Holland High Gravity Series tulip.

A: golden color with some orange/amber hues when light strikes the glass. bartender poured a decent foam, which was fairly dense and bubbly. settled into a thin ring with some moderate lacing.

S: citrus hops - mostly lemon - and vanilla... lots of vanilla. I detected a bit of toasted malts, but I couldn't quite decipher the exact flavor as the citrus and vanilla really overpowered everything else.

T: taste is akin to what I imagine lemon bars would taste like if the baker used 20 times the amount of vanilla called for in the recipe. something else that came to mind was that of a chardonay with hops in it. too much vanilla and too much lemony hops (and I usually love a lot of hops, this just didn't work for me).

M: a bit overcarbonated and too astringent with all the lemon.

D: This beer looked good and smelled ok, but went down hill from there. I like a lot of New Holland's brews, particularly Mad Hatter, but I didn't care for this one. The hops and the effects of the oak-aging just didn't seem to work together.

 1,092 characters

Photo of bobhits
2.75/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

I feel like I've had this on draft and wasn't disappointed, but this bottle isn't doing it for me.

The flavors here are that of toffee, light hops in the back, some oak, and a good bit of bread that's nearing toast (undercooked toast).

The aroma and looks are all what you'd expect so no need go there.

The real flaw in this beer is the mouth feel is watery and runny. Their is a lack of carbonation which higher abv beers can get away with due to their intense flavors, but at under 8% this one needs something to liven it up. Instead the beer is unpleasant to drink.

If this were carbonated I think it would be a pretty decent beer all be it a bit over priced. As it stands however I cannot recommend it at all.

 721 characters

Photo of seeswo
2.82/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours a bold, clear copper with a large, fast fading tan head. Big swirls and huge whiffs lead to little on the nose. Just a touch of malt sweetness and a hint of alcohol, go along with a little bit of oak. Really shocking to get little in the way of hops or really much of anything. In the taste, there is some malt sweetness early, a touch of oak and vanilla and a kind of flavorless bitterness. None of this comes together well, as the finishing bitterness and oak tannins in back don't finish so well and the front is a mess of malt and not a whole lot else. There is an oddity in the early to middle part of this beer in that it is almost watery. The nice presence of oak and vanilla that comes out more over time improve the taste grade one notch. Mouthfeel is decent, I guess. Carbonated and thin to medium. I was really excited to pop this beer and I really do not like it. They should talk to the people at Cigar City on how to get wood flavors into an IPA without ruining the qualities that make an IPA enjoyable.

 1,023 characters

Photo of n2185
3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a clear orange with a finger of beige head that fades into a thin layer with no lacing.

S: Citrusy hops on the nose with orange and grapefruit mostly. That's about it.

T: Grapefruit and resiny bitterness on the palate as well with slight oaky notes.

M: Medium body with lowish carbonation, this beer is slightly watery.

O: Not a bad beer overall, but it was just . . . boring. I expected some complexity from the oak, but it's just a bland IPA. The very definition of mediocre.

 490 characters

Photo of devinoconnor
3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

As a fan of New Holland's regular Mad Hatter IPA, this was certainly a letdown.

Pours a dark brown and redish color with a one-finger of head.

Smell was nice, rich caramel, wood and hops flowing together nicely.

But the taste is when I discovered this wasn't my kind of beer. The beer, which is aged in oak barrels, tastes very sweet, and the oak tasted more like earthy soil instead of a crisp wood flavor.

Overall, nothing I'd search out. Other Hatter IPAs are much stronger.

 484 characters

Photo of Vierenner
3.06/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is stunning ... crystal clear, copper/red, and a dense foam head which dissipates to a thin, gentle lace. As far as taste and smell, I was hoping for more oaky overtones but I get none of that. It seems a bit watery, actually, and the smell is very much like any IPA I've had. I feel they put more effort into the label than the beer.

 345 characters

Photo of bradleyp
3.08/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber into a Homer Simpson pint glass.

A: Light brown with a large orange hue to it. light bubbles coming through. Head didn't last very long. Not a lot of lacing at all.

S: I can smell some woodiness to it. You can tell it's more a a light woody flavor to it.

T: Hard to say, but I can def. get some of the oaky flavors coming through it. No hop profile to speak of. It is an IPA, and there is some bitterness, but not a lot of hop taste.

M: Light, crisp, goes down pretty well.

O: Pretty average for an Oaked aged IPA. I do prefer some of the other Hatters, like the Black IPA more. So overall this was not one of the better ones of the Hatter series.

 674 characters

Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.09/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a very clear light amber with no head or lacing.

The smell is mainly of oak with a slight bit of alcohol.

The taste is not very IPA like. Very little bitterness and just a touch of caramel malts. Lots of woody oak and a touch of vanilla coming through as well.

If it wasn't for the oak this beer would be terrible. Maybe I got an older bottle but I don't pick up on much IPA qualities at all. Also it was under $5 for the bomber which isn't a bad deal.

 462 characters

Photo of beerhan
3.12/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I am a fan of the imperial hatter but not the regular. I feel this beer is right in between. It tastes very very oaky with a maple syrup aftertaste. I had a 4oz sample last night and thought it was okay...I would never get this beer again but it was entertaining to try. I am more curious about the other hatter releases this summer

 332 characters

Photo of BeerLover99
3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: amber orange, trace head,

S: mild malt, vanilla, woodsy scent...very light smells

T: sweet malt, pine, mild smoke, dare I say hint of dill pickle? slow long bitter finish with hint of oak

M: med/light body, hint of sticky/oily mouth

O: For the price this is fine, but gotta say I'm
disappointed with this beer. Think it has loads
of potential, but just was ok.


 395 characters

Photo of divineaudio
3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

split a bomber with my girlfriend. poured into a pint glass

a - pours copper and gives me a thin cap of creamy tan head. retention is pretty good and leaves a few rings of lace in my glass.

s - vanilla and light pine resin.

t - piney bitterness with a toasty malt backbone. notes of vanilla, slightly phenolic, lingering bitter finish. kind of a weird combination.

m - a firm medium with just the right amount of carbonation.

o - my first experience with a barrel aged ipa. not a bad one, but not good enough to revisit this particular beer. if it weren't for the medicinal quality to the flavor i might actually seek this out.

 632 characters

Photo of eaker
3.19/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

A: Deep amber, cloudy, small amount of lacing.

S: Sweet with nice hints of oak.

T: Very upfront oak flavor that moves into a citrusy finish. Seems a little unbalanced between the oak and the hops…it just does not come together very well.

M: Loose, moderate carbonation that keeps the hops around in between drinks.

O: The oak aged barrel gives the Hatter a bit of a different experience especially given the IPA and Imperial Hatter profiles. It dulls down the bitterness and maintains a sweeter backend.

I was hoping that the oak would override the sweeter flavors with a deep resin profile, but to my surprise it did the opposite and muted the bittering of the hops and pushed a caramel flavor to the front. While I enjoyed the beer, I had a hard time reconciling the effect.

 787 characters

Photo of sidetracked
3.21/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a clear, orange-ish amber with a thin deep cream head that doesn't last long.

Smell is mostly wood--kind of damp and dank. Some caramel sweetness. Faint aroma of pine and floral hops.

Slightly sweet caramel, pine, and floral hops upfront. Flavors follow through to the finish where some wood and toffee are added. Finish is kind of earthy with damp wood. At times a little alcohol is present at the finish as it warms.

Medium body with medium carbonation and a clean finish.

Pretty good--reminds me of Hopivore a bit. Seems very different than regular Mad Hatter. Decent hop presence in the taste, but still more sweet than bitter. Wood flavor is kind of nice, but sometimes comes across as damp, rotting wood.


 732 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
3.23/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Walter Payton shaker pint glass.

I missed out on the tap versions of the Hatter series, so I was glad to see the bottles show up a few months later. This one pours a clear copper topped by a finger of dirty cream-white foam. The nose comprises caramel, buttery biscuits, pine, and light orange rind. I'm reminded of a good rendition of a slightly aged IPA. The taste holds notes of buttery caramel, light leek, light dank oak, and pine. Things do not sit on my tongue too well, frankly. The body is a light medium, with a light mdoerate carbonation and a kinda dry finish. Overall, I didn't enjoy this one as much as I thought I would: The flavor combination just didn't pan out very well.

 702 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
3.24/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours a clear amber/orange color with a half inch off-white head that went away quickly. There's an average amount of lacing left behind on the glass. Aroma is oak, pine hops, vanilla, caramel and some citrusy hops. However, the taste isn't as appealing as the aroma. The brew tastes like floral and pine hops, oak and caramel malt, but the flavors are subtle and seemed to be watered down. It's not a bad tasting brew, but I'm disappointed that the flavor wasn't stronger. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit coating and has moderate carbonation. I wasn't impressed with this one, don't think I'll try it again anytime soon. Hopefully their Rye Mad Hatter that I'm drinking next is better.

 753 characters

Photo of JohnnyHopps
3.25/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is the first bottle in the Mad Hatter series that did not erupt over my bar for no particular reason. That said, Kudos to the good people at New Holland.

Oak Aged hatter was a measured orange color with an appropriate white head. It gave a malty aroma that spoke more for the oak aging that the IPA. The initial taste was woody malty flavor. There was some vanilla that comes with the oak aging, but it was fairly nondescript. The citrus notes or any hop action was virtually not present. This may as well have been an oak aged pilsner. The oak aging lends itself to a smooth mouthfeel which is the highlight of this beer. It is a drinkable beer, but not what the label implies.

 684 characters

Photo of wvsabbath
3.27/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Dark tan brown, very small white head. Not much lacing.

Smell - Oak, hops, sugars, very floral, pineapple, grapefruit, lemon.

Taste - Very wood, oak flavor straight up front. Oak has a odd flavor, maybe from artifical additives. Very piney backbone to this beer. Has a lemon and banana twist. After the overpowering oak, you get some sugar and hop bite.

Mouthfeel - The oak drenches mouth at first but the beer is rather thin and aftertaste is slighty bitter. SLight sweetness left on tounge.

Overall - The oak flavor is way to overpowering, and its not a good oak flavor at that. Probily the reason this beer is so affordable is arifical oak added to it. Id rather pay more money for a true barrel aged beer, or aged in better whiskey barrels. I wont buy this one again.

 816 characters

Photo of SerialHiker
3.29/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Awesome orange hue, a classic fall color…nice pour makes finger width head, but that fades quick…some bubbles…(3/5)

Smell: Can really smell the oak age, almost has a bourbon smell…the caramel stands out, but certainly not a pungent beer…(2.75/5)

Taste: Awesome initial taste in the mouth…the oak aged flavor is radiant but not overpowering…the hops are soft but noticeable…for me, it’s kinda like a fluffy cloud passing over my tongue…definitely some caramel and pine after tones…very drinkable…(3.75/5)

Mouthfeel: Medium body with little carbonation…not real noticeable in the mouth, I mean, other than the tremendous flavor…(3/5)

Overall: I like this beer…it has the bourbon stout, oak aged flavor, but it’s got hoppy undertones and drinkability that I love…I don’t know if I could drink a bunch of these, but one of these tall boys will do me just fine…I would recommend it to anyone who likes bourbon, oak aged brews…(3.25/5)

 985 characters

Photo of jsh420
3.3/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours bright clear golden copper with a 1/2 finger head that left no lacing

smells very floral - reminds me of 2 hearted but not as strong

taste is a let down - very watered down flavors of oak floral pine hops and sweet caramel hops

mouthfeel is very light thin body with low carbonation very boring

overall - not an upgrade over the regular mad hatter and not worth a second buy

 384 characters

Photo of VelvetExtract
3.34/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A-Pours a clear, dull orange color. Head is a frothy cushion with an off-white hue. The head dies slowly and as I sip, circular lacing stains are left behind.

S-Candied citrus hops, a bit of grass and some soap. The most prevalent aspect of the nose is the caramel. A bit of dried oakiness. My first thought: too sweet.

T-Upfront caramel and more unspecific sweetness. The oak is not as defined as I'd like. The oak is slightly woody and it also has a sort of spicy tobacco element but it's a secondary flavor. The hops are also a secondary flavor. Sweet, perfumey, candied hops. The sweetness is the most dominating factor.

M-Medium bodied with plenty of texture. Soft carbonation. Light bitterness. Lingering sugary-liquid feel.

O-When I think. An Oaked IPA, I first think that it's probably a bad idea. Then I automatically assume, or hope that either the hops and barrel influence are the most prominent flavors. In this beer, I find that neither the hops (what you crave when you choose an IPA) nor the oak (what you want to experience when buying a beer aged in oak) are truly the most defining aspects of this beer. In closing, far too sweet.

 1,153 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Oak Aged Mad Hatter India Pale Ale from New Holland Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 161 ratings.