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Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)

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2,621 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,621
Reviews: 1,170
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 11.76%
Wants: 108
Gots: 195 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: John on 02-24-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,621 | Reviews: 1,170 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BabyBastard

New York

3.8/5  rDev -6.9%

This is my second go with Unearthly. First time around I think my palate was not developed enough to fully appreciate the bitterness. Bomber pours into tulip a dark amber, almost reddish hue, with sizeable eggshell color head that leaves tremendous lacing about the entire glass. Surely is on the darker side for an IPA, but can be expected due to its "Imperial" status. Smells of light hop, and more malt than expected. Alcohol twinge also touches the nose after a hefty whiff. Taste on this bad boy is surprisingly malty, seems to be more pronounced than the hop bitterness. That malt backbone makes itself known, but is followed up sharply by a stinging slap of hops on the taste buds. Surely an interesting spin on the "Imperial" IPA. Feeling this one out is a real pleasure, tingly on the palate, also the slick and oily characteristic that is so often associated with IPAs is present. For such a "big" beer, the drinkability is certainly above average, just because it does taste so damn good. In my eyes, Unearthly has certainly redeemed itself. I may be picking up more bombers of this just to have around.

04-18-2010 05:04:28 | More by BabyBastard
Photo of imagineiii


3.8/5  rDev -6.9%

Just hit shelves in VT today.

Poured into a pint tumbler. pale amber. not much head to speak of. whats there diminishes quickly.

smells of pine, honey and some bitter citrus. scent is suprisingly sweet.

flavors are certainly big. carbonation and hop bitterness is immediately noticable. residual sweetness prevails for a moment while hops return to dry out the back of your palate.

mouthfeel is thick, and slightly abrasive. carbonation is too much. aftertaste is garlicy and dry.

this beer is very interesting approach to the style. sweetness and bitterness are balanced but dont necessarily play well with each other. i would prefer it to be fruitier.

03-06-2009 01:53:43 | More by imagineiii
Photo of Kadonny


3.79/5  rDev -7.1%

Poured from a bomber bottle into my European style glass.

A: A dark amber gold color with a thin one finger off white head. I don't see a lot of carbonation either. It looks good.

S: Wow, you can tell this is a DIPA right off the bat. Lots of citrus hops and earthly hops like pine and wood coupled with a malty sweetness. A hint of what is to come.

T: Again, wow. So much is going on with this beer, so complex. Hops start you off with strong flavors of citrus and pine with an almost oakey wood flavor followed immediately by the heavy malty flavors of bread and caramel and sweetness. Finish is a lengthy bitterness with undertones of malt. Everything about the taste of this beer is huge.

M: Full bodied absolutely with an oily feel. To me the 11% abv is there. Some say this beer isn't bitter, I will respectfully disagree.

D: For me, low. Again, to respectfully disagree with others the drinkability of this beer is puzzling. The first 8-10 ounces of this beer are heaven but from there it declines rapidly. I could never ever session this beer.

Overall this beer has me torn. I respect how complex this thing is and no doubt it's one of if not the biggest DIPA I have ever tasted, as I said earlier everything in this beer is huge. The thing that holds me back is the drinkability. The first few ounces are sheer heaven, but then the last few (of the bomber) are hell. It's like taste bud overload. By the end of the 22 ounces my mouth has had enough. I still have another 4 bottles or so and I'm going to see how age treats this monster.

Southern Tier is making some great beers though, and even though this one puzzles my taste buds, I still respect them for making it.


I had this from tap last night at Capones, and this beer is infinitely more drinkable from tap. Some of the harsh strong alcohol flavors I was getting in the bottle seemed to be much smoother on tap. I easily put down a pint of this and chould have easily had more. I upped the drinkability ranking for an overall better score. So in summation, this beer is growing on me and is totally kick ass.

****Update Again****

Everytime I drink this beer, I appreciate it more, there are few DIPAs that can live up to this excellent beer. Upping both drinkability and appearance, this beer is a solid 4.5-4.7 beer.

****Updated again****

Had another fresh bottle. I have come to realize that this beer is much more enjoyable from tap. In bottle form the sweetness really seems to pop more than tap, making the drinkability suffer a bit. As I said in the first part of my review, the end of the bomber the sweetness starts to wear. Still a great beer, just not a super guzzler. I think I need to move my tap review to be separate.

01-10-2008 15:03:32 | More by Kadonny
Photo of jeonseh


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Thanks to Bwyker for this beer that I picked up in a trade and poured into my Goose Island Tulip.

A - pours a dark copper color that has a light hint of dark orange and amber as well. Has a bit of the metallic sheen with some light carbonation as well. Has a nice one finger head as well that stuck around for a bit and is close to what I would call the color ivory with a light bit of head and leaves some nice lacing down the glass as well.

S - smell is a lot of hops that are a bit bitter with a light mango fruit presence but not too much of it.Also can pick up a lot of the alcohol in the nose as well.

T - hmm, this is an odd beer to me. It has hops but it seems to be bitter for almost the sake of being bitter. There is a little bit of a malt background but not enough to even mildly offset the bitterness of the hops as well. Lots of hoppy bitterness too but almost too much and seems a bit unbalanced to me as well. The taste is mostly the pine aspect of the hops that one would expect from the cascade. As this warmed up I could definitely get the maltiness that some of the other reviewers have spoken about and this is actually a bit too sweet afterawhile. The hops are still there at the end of the drink and complements nicely with the sweetness.

MF - Decent body on this one; not too thick or too thin. Has a nice amount of carbonation in there as well that attacks the tongue and goes well with the bitterness of the hops. The aftertaste is mainly a bitterness that sits on the tongue after the beer goes down the throat.

D - I felt like this is kinda of an average DIPA in my opinion. It seems a bit unbalanced to me too which means that I wouldn't be crazy to try to get another one. I think this is a a beer that I wouldn't go out of my way to get and would pass over as well compared to other DIPAs.

02-13-2008 00:28:42 | More by jeonseh
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

This is a dark amber, thick honey color with a one-finger deep, thick and frothy head, dissipates really slow and plenty of sticky lacing to boot.

Smell's like honey-soaked pale malt, pungent fruitiness of ripe red berries and sweet caramel.

The flavor is a huge pine-tree resin and fruity hop bomb! citric acid and leafy hops make an acidic bite but a very sweet, honey-like current mellows all that out. The heat is hot, sure 11% is high, but it's the sharpness that makes this one a bit rough around the edges.

It's medium to full feel...full for an IPA and medium to full for a DIPA. The boozy alcohol males it feel sharp on the palate as well.

I found this one a bit hard to drink simply becuase of the sharp bitter hops and high boozy heat. The malt balance is nice though.

07-22-2008 18:55:27 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of cokes


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Smoky copper-orange hued with a trim eggy lacework.
A vague caramel doughy vapor quickly cedes the nose to the more forceful whiffs of pineapple, lime leaves, mangoes, pine pitch, and ferns. There's a fairly evident- but congruent and non-obnoxious- alcohol flair of juniper-heavy gin.
It unfolds similarly in the mouth. A quick and generally nondescript caramel breadiness. Then it lolls for a moment in dough and yeast. The hops hit with a forward lime zest and pineapple-mango-papaya smoothie effect. There are elements of acrid burnt conifers and resin, but on the whole it is more tropical than intense bitter. But even the tropical notes don't have all that much gumption, as the subside to a grassier, stemmy pulpiness. Alcohol adds as much dryness and flavor as anything, with that same Gin quality from the nose.
Moderately heavy through the mouth, but levitated with a minor, ever-trickling CO2. There's an illusory hollow feel, even in this thickness but it's a drinker for sure in spite of it all.
I'm sort of torn on this. For 11% and god knows how many IBUs, it's drinkable and almost balanced. And that is the problem. IIPAs are "experience" beers, and this lacks standout qualities. It's not loud, it's not intricate or complex. It's strong (though it doesn't really taste it), and that's about it.
I feel similarly about their regular IPA, both are without glaring flaws and without shining assets. Both are simply and decently middle-of-the-road.
The price-point is attractive and it's friendly enough that I'll likely buy this again, but So. Tier does much better things.

11-26-2007 09:20:48 | More by cokes
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Pours a golden tinged brown color, clean and clear with a nice cap of off-white head. Decent retention and minimal sticky lacing. Scent is a muddled combination of carmel, earthy and floral hops with a background of light grapefruit, pine and citrus. First taste is a rather bitter bite of hops - earthy, floral are dominant with pine and citrus in the rear. Strong toffee, carmel and bready malt backbone, slightly sweet. Fuller side of medium body, oily and thick, minimal bitter aftertaste. A good dIPA that leans more towards the malty sweet end and the hops are slightly muddled.

06-20-2010 18:42:34 | More by rfgetz
Photo of AgentZero


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

A - Slight head tha bubbled up nicely from the bottom, no real lacing. Orangish colored, hazy brew.

S - Citrusy and a lot of floral hops. Little soapy and gingery, actually get a hint of malts in there surprisingly.

T - A little sweet, very hoppy, pretty good, but not as complex as I was hoping for. Some carmel malts come through nicely to add a nice touch. Get a nice dose of alcohol on the frount

M - Would have liked it to be a little crisper. Medium bodied, decently carbonated.

D - Not bad, but high alcohol makes this hard to do tons of.

12-14-2009 04:28:34 | More by AgentZero
Photo of joeskirkie

New Jersey

3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Screen printed 22oz. bottle like the other Southern Tiers I've had, theres a grain bill listed on the bottle. Also "Serve in a fluted glass best at 42°F.

I chose my Duvel tulip.

In it, the beer sits bright orange, not much in the way of head, but still refreshing to look at.

The scent is decidedly citursy and husky. Theres some sweet bread in there as well, but the hops dominate.

Once I taste it theres an immediate bitter bite followed by a strong citrus and an almost medicinal alcohol. Theres an underlying note of sweet malts in there as well. It's a nice complexity.

There's a sweet ,sticky, creamy mouthfeel, not really heavy.

I've never had a Southern Tier that I didn't like, and I do like this one, it definitely has it's own distinguishing qualities.

04-03-2008 00:49:38 | More by joeskirkie
Photo of JackieTH


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Appearance: Coppery orange with two fingers of white foamy head.

Smell: Resinous pine and grapefruit aroma.

Taste: Similar to nose but more malty presence. Sweeter than expected. Becomes slightly cloying as it warms.

Mouthfeel: Nice. Medium bodied, creamy, with crisp edge to the carbonation.

Drinkability: Stronger ABV although the profile is standard fare, thus easy enough to drink but won't stand out in a crowd.

01-03-2011 02:28:52 | More by JackieTH
Photo of WJVII


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Thanks BA bud Cdkrenz. Poured from a bomber into a pint glass this brew has a nice orange amber color with a thick white 2 finger head with an aggressive pour. The head settles into a nice thin cap leaving sticky delicious lacing down the glass. The brews aroma is full of pine needles with nice clove and nutty notes. The taste is not over powering. There is a very strong hop start with a slight butterscotch middle and a mild bitter finish with some brown sugar and caramel malt balance. This brew is not the POW hop flavor I expected. It is balanced, sweet and spicy. Very good brew.

09-22-2010 00:32:46 | More by WJVII
Photo of klkatz


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

from a large bottle (what is that 20 ounces??) - poored into a National Mechanics Bill Cosby glass (I didn't steal the glass, a bartender gave it to me... wrapped it in paper too)

Gave Cosby a reddish gold look.... with a thick off-white head. I was celebrating Chinese New Year while drinking this and the bubbles were happy to meander to the top and show me there presence. Happy Chinese New Year!

Yes! Aroma was excellent. Hops. Grapefruit... floral... like a wet, lush morning stroll through the jungle crunching plants beneath your boots...

Taste - Boom! it's a slap in the face with bitterness... thinking at first maybe too much. Hmm... another sip.

Mouthfeel sits well... but kind of soapy...

Drinkability - is average... with 11% alcohol it is kind of impressive.. .but I think 1 (maybe) 2 is enough.

02-16-2011 01:35:39 | More by klkatz
Photo of klewis


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

A: Pours a cyrstal clear golden with a small thick head. Moderate lacing.

S: Mostly pine with a bit of citrus. A big whiff produced an alcoholic fume that burned the nostrils.

T: Raw and earthy flavors of pine needles. Unrefined and harsh. Perhaps slightly oxidized?

M: Thick, full-bodied, and syrupy. Sticky with a lingering taste.

D: Not bad, but not worth $8 a bottle. Great mouthfeel, but the taste is tiring and brash.

01-25-2007 06:28:12 | More by klewis
Photo of dtivp


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Pours a clear copper-orange with a finger and a half bright white head, good retention with moderate lacing.

Aroma of bready malt, citrus and pine.

Taste of citrus, pine, sweet malt , caramel and a very light hop bitterness.

Moth Feel was medium body, moderate carbonation, smooth and slightly sweet.

Overall this was an enjoyable beer, I was very surprised that there wasn't a stronger hop bitterness since this is an Imperial IPA.

12-22-2011 02:47:59 | More by dtivp
Photo of psunate


3.78/5  rDev -7.4%

Poured from a bottle into a tulip.

Minimal amount of white head that dissipated quickly on a nice, red-orange tinged body. This DIPA, unlike some others, is pretty pure as I can cleary see my hand on the other side of the glass.

Can definitely smell the hops but not nearly as much as some other hop-bomb DIPA's.

Hoppy citrus flavors up front, orange and grapefruit, that quickly turn to a malty sweetness. Almost candy like sweetness at the end.

The drinkability is excellent for a beer listed at 11% ABV. Overall, it seems that this DIPA, in attempt to avoid being unbalanced on the hop side of the equation, leans towards the malt backbone that dominates quickly into tasting. Not my favorite DIPA due to this, but still a delicious beer. Would be a good DIPA to introduce someone new to the style with.

12-30-2008 02:21:43 | More by psunate
Photo of Stofko1992


3.76/5  rDev -7.8%

08-20-2014 05:01:54 | More by Stofko1992
Photo of artoolemomo


3.76/5  rDev -7.8%

Appearance- Pours up good amount of head which has okay retention. The head is off-white with hints of yellow while the body is a pale to medium amber which appears as a pale amber when held up to the light. Spots of lacing then a sliver of sheeting around the surface of the beer. Lots of lacing after a while.

Nose- Nice but doesn't have much complexity or presence. Citrus (mostly orange) with some pine hanging around the edges. The glass shows a good amount of caramel which fades and shows more of the orange from the bottle. Swirling shows more of the caramel.

Taste- Starts off with citrus while pine, resin, and matchstick flirt around the edges. Slight note of lollipop or lemon or both- kind of like a Jolly Rancher. This fades quickly to show a huge amount of woody bitterness- the pine, resin, and matchstick show up big here. This, however, is contained by a large amount of pepper on the finish. I don't think I've ever tasted this much pepper in any beer before- even beers brewed with pepper. Very spicy hop finish. Some caramel on the front which is quickly overtaken by the wood and gives it taste of burnt caramel. A good IIPA just not the type that I like. I do appreciate that the hop bitterness is manageable and has no real linger.
Caramel (mixed with the lollipop, almost lemon drop flavor) starts to show up on the back end and give this beer more complexity. Above average to good beer. I'm leaning more toward good because the citrus, caramel, and pepper really give a lot of depth to what could just be another bitter IPA.

Mouthfeel- Between light and medium bodied with a bit of syrup to the texture. Mild carbonation.

Drinkability- Pretty easygoing for what I thought, at first, was going to be a pretty hoppy beer. No sign of the 9.5% and at a little over 6 bucks for a bomber at Grocery Outlet, a pretty good price as well. However, I'd rather pay for Sucks this time of year.

Overall- Above average to good but mostly good. A very serviceable IIPA- there's nothing special about it but I would give it a try.

12-14-2013 04:30:23 | More by artoolemomo
Photo of sabitu


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

01-09-2014 01:49:26 | More by sabitu
Photo of Cynic-ale


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

07-30-2013 10:56:47 | More by Cynic-ale
Photo of MVG666


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

03-08-2014 01:55:21 | More by MVG666
Photo of kwkdmk


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

03-21-2014 01:33:33 | More by kwkdmk
Photo of rdilauro


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

In this situation, the pour was better than the beer. The color was a deeper rich amber orange hue, what I've expected from most IPAs and Imperial IPA. In fact maybe a shade darker. Not sure where it fits on the SRM scale.

The nose was so very typical of a hoppy IPA. All the grapefruit, citrus came flying towards my nose as well as some lemon and melon. I could have just sniffed this one for a couple of hours, a real treat.

The first sip, big big and bigger and soft, filling my entire mouth. But it was somewhat unbalanced. The hops were there but no malt to offset some of the bitterness. So, the finish was just a strong bitter flavor.

A bit too malty for my taste with an IPA

Again, I am glad I tried this, its always fun to experiment, but this is one I will not be asking for again.

01-29-2014 19:02:15 | More by rdilauro
Photo of clevelandhops

New York

3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

09-15-2013 14:40:49 | More by clevelandhops
Photo of aztraz


3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

03-27-2013 14:51:05 | More by aztraz
Photo of chrishiker1409

New York

3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

07-31-2013 16:14:50 | More by chrishiker1409
Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,621 ratings.