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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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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

2,675 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,675
Reviews: 1,176
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 11.76%
Wants: 110
Gots: 217 | 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: 2,675 | Reviews: 1,176 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of thekevlarkid
4.53/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After hearing much about this beer I finally tracked it down! Out of a bomber this brew was an orange-amber color with perfect clarity and good rising carbonation. The full three-fingers of yellowish head displayed very good retention and consistent, very good lacing. This beer just plain looked great. The aroma was excellent, rich and complex- fruity esters, floral hops, pineapple, orange, pine. The flavors were equally complex, lots of citrus and citrus rind that then gave way to herbal and piney elements along with alcohol and doughy malt that balanced the beer nicely. The 11% was very well-hidden, it drank like a beer half its strength. The mouthfeel was creamy, soft and a touch oily, the body medium/full and the carbonation delicate. The hop complexity was impressive and the beer totally on-point for the style.

thekevlarkid, Apr 16, 2009
Photo of Tone
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear and inviting pale amber color. 2/3 inch head of an off-white color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells of strong hops, some sweet malt, and faint notes of earthy malt as well. This brew smelled amazing from the moment I popped the cap and only seems to get better. Fits the style of an American Double / Imperial IPA. Mouth feel is smooth and slightly thick with a high carbonation level. Tastes of a couple types of hop very nicely blended up front, then some earthy malt comes through strongly, there's a general sweetness (brown sugar?) that comes through, there's also a slight pine kick, and the finish is more hop flavor. A slight dryness is associated but not to a bad degree. The finish is very smooth and the overall flavor character is well blended. I highly recommend this brew.

Tone, Apr 13, 2009
Photo of nicnut45
4.6/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours a rosy amber color. It is suprisingly clear. A nice dollop of white head sits in the middle surrounded by thin whispy head.

Aroma: Piney, tree sap, some grapefruit. Vanilla scent in the background?

Taste: Piney bitter taste, sweet marshmallow, vanilla notes in the background. Nice balance of bitterness and just the right amount of sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Exceptionally smooth. The smoothness D.I.P.A. I have evr had. Light to medium carbonation.

Drinkability: I could drink these all night. Taste better then most D.I.P.A.'S that cost twice as much. I will buy this again.

nicnut45, Apr 12, 2009
Photo of tai4ji2x
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

RE-REVIEW

okay, well, now that i've had the sweeter, dry-hop-focused side of the spectrum (ie, pliny the elder), i'm beginning to understand how some DIPA's don't have to be so bracingly bitter.

this is where things fall into place for unearthly.

along with a nicer lacing this time around, i'm upping the scores.

appearance 4.0 -> 4.5
taste 3.5 -> 4.0
mouthfeel 3.5 -> 4.0

>>>>>>>>>>>>>
ORIGINAL REVIEW, 02-08-08

22oz bottle

clear orangy amber, head is decent but retention isn't great - fades to a few thin wisps. lacing is a bit sparse.

piney hops, some citrus, giving a fruity sweetness with hint of malt and whiff of bread.

fruity, citrusy hops come at you at the beginning of each sip, backed by a decent malt backbone. however, something all seems a bit subdued, almost "watered down". the bitterness backs off relatively quickly, barely lasting into the finish. a little more when things warm up, but still... is this a double/imperial?

pretty smooth, but again a sense that it's a little thinner than expected. is this really 11% ABV?

i suppose that you could give this brew credit for "hiding" the high alcohol so well. but i was also expecting something a little more aggressive flavorwise, especially with the bottle's own description.

tai4ji2x, Apr 06, 2009
Photo of ABOWMan
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22 oz. bottle a nice light fresh straw color. Easily produced a full three finger head of dense fluffy white foam. The glass was picture perfect and made my mouth start to water.

The armoa further teased my palate with fresh citrus, melon, and cotton candy (probably reminiscent of the spun caramelized sugar).

The flavor was a perfect balance of hop bitterness and alochol sweetness. I loved this beer and would gladly have had another if I had the foresight to have bought a second.

Mouthfeel was fresh, clean. Very easy to drink, although I am sure at 11% abv. it would catch up with you quickly.

ABOWMan, Apr 01, 2009
Photo of whitehouse50
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Andy's. Pours a relatively deep orangey amber color with about a 1 in. white head. Aromas of strong citrousy hops, slight hints of grapefruits.

On the first sip it was very hoppy, not bitter at all, big citrousy flavors similar to the nose. The hop flavor after taste lingers well after and eventually fades away nicely. This one does not violently attack your taste buds like other imperials or DIPAs.

M & D, this is a full bodied imperial that hits you with hops the moment it is poured until the after taste leaves you. A wonderful experience.

whitehouse50, Mar 30, 2009
Photo of techcommdood
3.28/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance
Poured from a bomber into a standard US pint glass. Dark golden or light amber in color with a half-finger of spongy head. Good lacing on the glass.

Smell
You get a ton of grains and malts on the nose. It smells very sweet, but only a trace amount of hops on the nose along with a little citrus. Reminds me more of a barleywine than an IPA.

Taste
The hops come through though they're more stringent on the back of the tongue; mainly bittering hops shining through, nothing floral about this beer. It's almost sticky sweet, with maltiness taking the back seat to the massive sweetness in this beer. No citrus to speak of in the flavor, despite the nose.

Mouthfeel
This is one thick, sticky beer going down, though leaves your mouth dry at the end.

Drinkability
I'm a big beer freak, so this one went down easy for me, though I can see others having trouble with this one. It's almost like drinking light syrup.

Overall
I think it's pretty good. It's definitely not a regular every-day beer, but good for occasional enjoyment. It's very unbalanced; hops just aren't there in the nose or in the taste up front, but come back to grab you after you swallow. A slightly acidic flavor afterward, this beer is sweet and sticky up front. A very heavy beer.

techcommdood, Mar 29, 2009
Photo of barnzy78
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22. Pours amber with a pleasant frothy off-white head. Excellent aromas of citrus and an explosion of piny hops. Initial flavors are grapefruit and lemon with a strong bitter hop finish. Alcohol is well concealed. Caramel malts with hints of honey aid the finish and balance towards the end of the bomber and actually, in my opinion, make it much more enjoyable than the beginning of the bottle. Worth the experience.

barnzy78, Mar 28, 2009
Photo of Brad007
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light copper color with a thin one-finger head into my glass.

Aroma is full of grassy hops that stand out in the nose, followed by biscuit malt.

Taste is full of grassy and floral hops upfront. They fade into a nice amount of biscuit malt underneath. Very well done.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering grassy and floral hops and biscuit malt.

It's not "hop juice" but it is very nice nonetheless. I have to admit that I prefer Gemini more but this stands out well on its' own. Pick up a bottle.

Brad007, Mar 28, 2009
Photo of jdgainor
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed at Al's of Hampden, Central PA. Very excellent beer. A bit high in alcohol content even for an imperial ipa and a bit sparse on both head and carbonation, but the hop and malt flavor was full and it balanced out the high alcohol content well. I'd recommend it indeed, but not to have more than one at a sitting. Delicious, but not a session beer.

jdgainor, Mar 26, 2009
Photo of beertunes
3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into bubble pint glass. Poured the typical orangeish-amber IPA color with about a 1/8 inch of of white head. The head semi-quickly dissipated leaving a lot of sticky lacing. A very floral-hop forward aroma with citrus notes. The taste is what the aroma led me to believe what it would be. Mostly hop flavors but some malt foundation for the hops to cling to. Body is average for an ImpIPA, as is drinkability. A solid, but not outstanding, version of the style. This beer very much reminds me of Stone IPA, but obviously with more of a kick. Since that is one of my favorite IPAs, this is a good thing. This beer is worth trying and I will certainly buy it again.

beertunes, Mar 24, 2009
Photo of Wheelinb
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had this on tap and in a bottle and it is consistently been very good. Strong hop and malt smell. It has a nice citrus flavor as well that adds some sweetness but all of the hops bring it back to the taste range that I enjoy. It can finish with a bitter after taste, especially when paired with food, which is why I prefer to drink this without food.

Wheelinb, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of spittingoutteeth
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Not sure what the last reviewer was drinking, but it certainly wasn't the same beer as me....

While I will agree that the nose leaves a lot to be desired (this is true of all Southern Tier brews; not sure why), the flavor is exploding with hops (lots of citrus flavor, which I wasn't expecting from a northern US IPA) and the mouthfeel is slightly bitter, but incredibly well-balanced with a subtle malt, creating high drinkability despite the high alcohol content.

The lack of an aroma to match the huge taste is disappointing, but not enough to keep this from being one of my new favorites. Highly recommended.

spittingoutteeth, Mar 21, 2009
Photo of BZero007
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Snifter, the beer pours a very Amber color with a medium head. Smell was of fruits and a very strong malt presence in my beer. Now I am not sure how old my beer was do to the fact there is no bottled date on it, it was purchased at a beer shop of the shelf. When tasted it reminded me a bit of the DFH 90min due to the Malt being easily detectable, though in this particular beer it was very prominent. Hops are right there along with it, but I feel that I had an older beer as they were not as strong as I have heard. Unearthly was a very easy beer to drink and very smooth. Medium body and carbonation that was very smooth, and it also did a very good job of hiding the alcohol percentage. It was a good beer and I would drink it again.

BZero007, Mar 20, 2009
Photo of israel
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- the color of jurassic amber, minus the mosquito-some nice lacing down the glass with what quickly turned into a very thin to non-exsistent head.

S- plenty of floral hops with a touch of citrus lingering in the background, also some sweetness detected in the nose...

T- hops dominate which would be expected but there is a healthy helping of malt here and this adds to the complexity IMO.very balanced for such a big beer.

M- velvety with body, body is medium to high with just the right amount of carbonation.

D- seriously, this beer is 11%..? hard to believe until you start feeling it a bit after a couple...very drinkable for the style..

israel, Mar 19, 2009
Photo of mbrasi
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted side by side with it's oak aged brother. Pours golden amber with a white head. Hops come out strong in the aroma from the dry hopping. Standard west coast variety hops, chinook, cascade leading to the familiar pine resin aroma. This brew is full bodied and smooth. Hops leave a slight bitterness in the finish but not too much, more of a refreshing bitterness. Solid brew 11% hardly noticable (thats dangerous) it's offset by a sweetness.

mbrasi, Mar 15, 2009
Photo of htomsirveaux
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle tried 31 May 2008.

Large lacy head. Clear bright amber color. Aromas of citrus, resin and ethanol. Starts well balanced with caramel and resin. Hops are green and nicely citric. Pineapple starts to develop and overtake the citrus towards the middle and end. Long lingering bittersweet finish. Sticky mouthfeel, medium body. Alcohol strong but not overpowering.

Quite tasty, would get this again.

htomsirveaux, Mar 14, 2009
Photo of Gtreid
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks go out to reginaldo for this one. Poured the bomber into a snifter.

A: Vibrant and true orange. A smooth pour only produces a half finger of white head that leaves a nice sticky lace.

A: Big floral hop presence jumps from the glass. There is definately some citrus, I'm getting orange peel and kumkuat. Sweet malts and honey round out the nose.

T: Man this is a tasty brew! Flowers and citrus up front, then the sweetness hits you in the back, along with a nice alcohol warmth. I am shocked at how balanced this is. Yes the hops dominate, but the sweet malts make their presence known.

M: Smooth, medium body, just the right amount of carbonation for the style.

D: Again, I am shocked at how drinkable this was, especially at 11% ABV. As the beer warms, it becomes slighty sticky on the palate, and the alcohol checks in, but this is one fine brew! Great offering from Southern Tier, will absolutley be seeking this again. Skal.

Gtreid, Mar 14, 2009
Photo of aerozeppl
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a very nice deep copper color with 2 fingers of head. The lacing was such that I could see every sip etched into the side of the pint glass.

S: Huge floral hop nose. Some pine in there are well. Only a touch of citrus but this is an east coast DIPA so that is ok.

T: What I like about unearthly is how it is a little bit boozy but that it works with the beer. The hops are certainly there and there is quite a bit of malt. I wouldn't call this balanced though.

M: Very thick and sticky mouthfeel. Smooth body though.

D: I love this beer. I grab at least one bottle a month. Just a really nice example of a big east coast DIPA.

aerozeppl, Mar 11, 2009
Photo of woemad
3.53/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber purchased at Huckleberry's in Spokane for $6.49. First time I'd seen it there. No freshness date. According to the label, I'm supposed to serve this at exactly 42 degrees Fahrenheit. So, if at 41 or 43 degrees, the effect is ruined?

Poured a dark honey color, with a decent-sized, white head that hung around for a while. Rings of foam left on the sides of my glass.

Grapefruit and pine from the hops are what first greeted my nose. Gradually a caramel maltiness also became evident. There's a slight, musty odor way in the background that makes me wish there was a freshness date.

Starts out piney, but is almost immediately matched with a subordinate (but still evident) sweet maltiness. The malts actually seem slightly overdone, but not to an unpleasant degree. Dry, medicinal hop taste at the swallow. This tasted like it was perhaps not as fresh as it could have been.

Medium bodied, with a coating mouthfeel that nevertheless seemed slightly too watery for the style.

A decent DIPA, but not an essential one in my book. It goes down surprisingly easy for it's abv, but I think the hops could stand out more, or at least the maltiness could be dialed down some. Southern Tier is one of those breweries I've been hearing of for a long time, so I guess I was expecting more when I finally got to try one of their beers. Perhaps it's been around for a while (though not at where I bought it, where it's a recent arrival).Not bad, but I can drink better DIPAs around here, like the locally brewed Alpha Dog.

woemad, Mar 07, 2009
Photo of Bung
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. Bright golden pour, white head that diminished pretty quickly. Sticks to the dimpled mug very nicely though. Standard piney citrus, more piney aroma with some malt. Malt and biscuit is a little more present in the flavor, with some yellow rainin, which balances out the piney hops. A well balanced big beer, with well hidden alcohol. Not a complete hop bomb. Finish is bitter, but not overly and lingers nicely. This is pretty drinkable, I'd be real careful with the 11% hiding in there. Prefer ST stouts, but this was pretty good too.

Bung, Mar 07, 2009
Photo of SFLpunk
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Just off the truck in Vermont! Barely had time to chill it down before I cracked it open. 22oz brown glass pry-top. The box was dated 2/10/09.

Appearance: Crystal clear light amber hue. Poured into an Imperial pint with two and a half fingers of bone white, frothy bubbly head that took a while to recede and left lots of lacing and whatnot.

Nose: Sweet brown sugar and hop oils galore! Ruby grapefruit, fresh Douglas fir, light rye bread fresh from the oven.

Palate: Immediate bitterness on the sides of the tongue followed by a lot of center palate sweetness. The malt lends a medium body and carries through the center of the bold pine-y hops on either side of the palate. Loads of bitterness, but sweet at the same time. The carbonation is light (maybe because of the pour). Long finish dominated by evolving and changing hops notes. The sugar never goes away, so the beer's never astringent despite it's high IBUs.

Notes: I love this beer. This is one of my favorite Imp IPA's (along with Avery Maharaja). It's a bit sweet, but the 150 some-odd IBUs take care of that.

SFLpunk, Mar 07, 2009
Photo of StJamesGate
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours bright orange with a soapy orange nose. Candied, tropical fruit malts balanced by citrus and some pine in the hops. ABV very well hidden. Creamy feel, clean finish.

Not extreme; very much not a West Coast IPA. Great balance, no bitterness. Considering the strength, amazingly drinkable.

StJamesGate, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of imagineiii
3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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.

imagineiii, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of jayczar
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I finally had a chance to try this tremendous IIPA and it does not disappoint.

Nice clear, medium dark amber coloring with excellent lacing that hangs out to nearly the last drop.

A very pungent grapefruit and fruity aroma with a hint of pine and plenty of hops that attack the senses and is synonymous with a good IIPA.

The taste has a nice hoppy bite and again the grapefruit is there with plenty of spice to back it up. A hint of alcohol lingers but is nothing you would expect from an 11% abv. overall very nice.

Mouthfeel is the most exciting part as all the flavors bite at once and has a kind of spicy aftertaste which I really like.

This is overall an excellent beer and I highly recommend to anyone looking for a true "Unearthly" hop experience.

jayczar, Mar 04, 2009
Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,675 ratings.