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

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Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

2,781 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,781
Reviews: 1,181
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.79%
Wants: 123
Gots: 260 | FT: 2
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: 2,781 | Reviews: 1,181 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Intimidtor
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked this beast (22oz bomber) up at Simmones Beverage in Lakewood Ohio for about $7.00. All I can say is WOW. This is one of the greatest DIPAs ever. I would have to call this Great Divide-Hercules on Steroids. What a wonderful creation. That you Southern Tier.
A-Poured from 22 oz bomber into 12 oz snifter in two pours of course. Poured with about a finger width of head. Nice amber color.
S-Sweet with hops, faint pine, caramel smell
T-Exceptional flavor, bold hops with proper balance of sweetness. I like the sticky head at the beginning. Alcohol is present but is carried by flavor properly with a strong finish.
M-Hops slam your tounge with perfect bitterness followed by the sweet finish. Drinks a little thicker and finishes perfect not to dry.
D-Very good. With 11% ABV you better take it easy. One bomber and I was feeling good.

Photo of vacax
3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This Imperial Caramel Pale Ale pours a rich caramel color with nice and creamy dense dark white head. Retention is legitimately appealing with good evidence of lacing left behind.

Aromas of sweet malts pervade this brew. Brown sugar, sticky caramel, and honey. In the background there is a resinous, sticky quality with some nice mango. Alcohol is present, matching the high level of malt scents. The aroma would well represent an American Barleywine.

The initial flavor profile has a rich caramel sweetness mixed with a pronouncedly bitter top note. Caramel and brown sugar mix with a sticky sappy bitterness. Finish brings herbal and menthol essences along with an alcoholic bite. Tastes like a hop forward American Barleywine. Fairly nice taste, though far from the mark of IIPA. Full body with medium-low carbonation. Again, feel is nice, though too heavy for an IIPA. Would be hard pressed to drink a full bomber of this one on my lonesome, but a nice full bodied brew to share with a friend.

Photo of tigg924
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear, orange-gold in color, moderate carbonation, minimal head

Smell: bread, toasted malt, and hops

Taste: piney hops dominate, with some citrus hops and a malty bready taste in the back.

Mouthfeel: first small sweetish taste before a big bitter taste that dominates. medium bodied, medium/low carbonation

Drinkability: I am not a hop head, but this did not do it for me personally. I think this is a one max per sitting beer. The bitter taste is dominant, but the bready backbone threw me off. I have had better in the style.

Photo of Hullabaloo2
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma - Immediately upon pour this beer gives off very nice earthy hop aroma. Some fruity esters. Soon after a heavy malt sweetness comes through. It almost smells cloying. It's an intense, but not complex aroma.

Appearance - Gold/Amber color with a white head the poured 1 fingerwidth. The head dissipated to just a light covering on top with a ring around the edge. Crystal clear with little visible carbonation

Taste - Mild bitterness at first. As the aroma suggested the malt sweetness is the dominant note in this beer. Very little hop flavor and smooth bitterness. Definite notes of alcohol, but not hot. Slightly cloying.

Mouth Feel - Medium/Heavy body. Average carbonation. Smooth. Noticeable alcohol, but again, not hot. Cloying on the finish. Mild bitterness all the way through.

Overall Impression - Judging by the gravity information on the side of the bottle they were able to ferment this down pretty far, but it is still a bit cloying. There is a definite lack of hops (both in flavor and bitterness) in this beer. More hops would also cut down on the cloying sweetness. It's a good beer, but I don't think it's worthy of some of the other notable DIPAs.

Photo of porterwoobie
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, poured into a standard pint glass.

A: ruby amber color, clear, large 2 finger off-white head that dissipates slowly, very good lacing.

S: bold pine hop aroma, some malt sweetness, slight alcohol undertones.

T: piney hop flavor before the bitteness settles in. the hops are weighted toward the bitter side, as the flavor is quickly overcome by the bitterness, which lingers for quite some time. mildly resiny. doesn't taste like an 11% beer, although there is a slight alcohol flavor and nose.

MF: medium bodied, medium carbonation. fairly easy drinking for the high gravity.

Drinkability: definitely a sipper. at 11%, this one will sneak up on you.

Photo of Onenote81
3.2/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle received as a kickin' extra from calise1122 in a recent trade. Thanks, Brett!

No date on the bottle.

Poured into my goblet. Pours a hazy amber/orange with an inch's worth of off-white head on top. Dissipates to just a ring around the edge. Leaves plenty of gorgeous sticky lace on the glass. The scent is a little underwhelming. Smells sweet, but the big hoppy citrus punch I expect is absent. In its place is a sweet graham cracker, brown sugar, molasses scent. Some light pine on the finish.

The mouth is slightly syrupy. Mild carbonation on the tongue. For the multiple hops used in this beer, and in what forms they were used, I am also a little underwhelmed by the flavor. Some light citrus tones at the onset, but very low bitterness. The sweetness continues here as well. Lots of caramel and toffee in this beer. Mild bitter finish, but it fades quickly.

Huh. I'm going to assume that this bottle had some age on it. Please regard this review as such. All in all, a good beer for sure, but just shadows of what I think it is meant to be. I would love to try a fresh bottle and compare my findings. For all I know this IS a fresh bottle. Still, I'd recommend this beer.

Photo of Lunch
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at ChurchKey in Washington, D.C.(11/07/09) in a 16oz. nonic pint glass at a desired temperature.

A: Pours a hazy, glowing, amber/orange with a half finger of an off-white head which disappears rather quickly leaving average lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: A piney and hoppy scent with a citrus bouquet combined with sweet alcoholy malt.

T: A smooth and sweet flavor which includes pine, citrus, wood, and a pleasant warming alcohol sensation. Fairly bitter, but the sweet malt keeps it quite balanced.

M: Oily and buttery with a fairly heavy feel and appropriate carbonation.

D: I must say that for being 11%abv this beer is quite drinkable. The flavors work well together and any sense of a hop harshness is all but eliminated.

Overall I find this beer to be a very nice east coast DIPA that is crafted with the utmost quality. Recommended.

Photo of kwakwhore
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased at Grape and Gourmet in VA Beach, VA.
Dark golden orange pour with a small but persistent off white head which leaves copious lacing on the glass.
Honey and orange blossoms on the nose, not much in the way of hops, but this is more than made up for when I start to drink it.
First on the tongue is a bittersweet hop and malt mélange which is followed by a big shot of grapefruit bitterness which combine to make this a complex and very tasty brew. For a short time the hops have a mint character but this is quickly overwhelmed by the bitterness which takes the hop character towards west coast dimensions.
For its strength this a very refreshing beer. The relatively light mouthfeel does have some oily hop resins which are quite persistent. Amazingly easy to drink, you would never guess that this beer has 11% ABV.
Whether you're an east coast or west coast fancier, this is simply an outstanding double IPA. I'm planning a trip back to VA so I can pick up some more.

Photo of Jeffo
3.28/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at De Bierkoning in Amsterdam.

From a bomber into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: Pours a thicker looking compact one finger off-white head with good retention. Color is tawny or burnt orange but is tangerine when held up to the light. Perfectly clear with lower end carbonation. Head quickly fades to a thin wisp with a good ring around the glass. Splotchy wisp and ring remains but leaves only some lacing. Poured the yeast in on the second glass, which obviously came out quite cloudy.

SMELL: Pale and toasted malt with a dose of flowery and soapy hop notes. Some sweet mandarin, honeydew melon, and citrus notes as well, but this part isn't as pronounced as I'd expect for the style. A little more mild than I'd like for a DIPA.

TASTE: Pale and toasted malt with mostly floral hops and a bit of that soapiness again, though not as much as I was expecting given the nose. Some citrus and grapefruit flavors through the middle before some bitterness at the end. Finishes clean with a mild and short lived delayed aftertaste. Aftertaste is nicely bitter and floral, but unfortunately too mild to be memorable.

PALATE: Full body with medium to lower end carbonation. Creamy and almost chewy on the palate, goes down creamy smooth with a slight bite at the end to remind you of the ABV. Finishes slightly drier and warming. Very nice feel for the style.

OVERALL: A little underwhelming for the style, but that makes it quite drinkable. Not a hop bomb like a lot of these Imperial IPA's, and probably not quite as drinkable as their Hoppe, but a good beer on its own.

Photo of SirSketch
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Golden copper color with some orange hues. Pours a sticky, lumpy head with large lacing. Visually stunning beer.

S - A cornucopia of fruits, including grapefruit, citrus and pineapple. Slight alcoholic aroma. Complex malt smells. Butterscotch is apparent.

T - The first thing I noticed about the taste was it's acetonic quality that helped clear my sinuses. It is a bit much, but it almost blends well with the rest of the flavors. Taste goes from bitter to sweet and back. Nice fruity, resiny hop character. Finishes sweet.

M/D - Sticky mouth with a creamy sort of carbonation. Decent drinkability for such a high alcohol beer.

Photo of JohnL9013
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An exceptional beer from Southern Tier and a different take on "DIPA" than I expected.

A: Hazy, glowing pale orange with a big head and good lacing.

S: An unimpressive smell, surprisingly. I really had to stick my nose in this one to tell that it was a DIPA.

T: Once I took a sip of this stuff, all was forgiven. This is a superb DIPA that's extremely smooth. It's sweet, almost like a good whiskey that's been aged in wooden barrels. In fact, my overall impression of this beer is that it tastes like a whiskey combined with a DIPA. A very complex beer for sure, and, like I said, sweet and smooth. I have a hard time believing this isn't oaked, honestly.

M: Very, very smooth. Can't even tell it's an 11%. Low carbonation. Superb, but not quite dry enough.

D: Can't take too much of this stuff, but it is really smooth.

This certainly isn't your typical DIPA. It definitely lives up to its name. Worth the $8 I paid for it for sure.

Photo of adamette
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber that I bought at SAVE-ON Tobacco & Beverage in Mentor for $6.99 last week into my Cooperstown Beverage Trail pint glass. No "best by" date observed by me. 11.0% ABV written on the label of my beer.

A glowing orange translucent body under a nice, creamy light brown one inch head that I had to pour vigorously to get. Nice lacing left on my glass after my repeated sips. 4.0

S Ripe grapefruit hops dominate the smell but I get some nice, sweet malt in there too. Interesting, intriguing. 4.0

T Hops are first thing I taste but it was obvious in seconds that this is a nicely balanced DIPA with sweet malt washing over my taste buds. On the back of my tongue I get a deep bitter taste as well. I simply do not taste the 11.0% ABV. Really nicely done. 4.5

M Not the bitter, biting hops that so many DIPAs have. This one is full, smooth but not without a bite of hops. 4.5

D Surprisingly very good as other beers that I have had in this style have proven to be quite undrinkable. Really one of the most drinkable DIPAs that I have had. 4.0

Notes: This is a serious rival to ST Choklat as my favorite beer of theirs and also bumps up Southern Tier Brewing Company on my mental list of great breweries. Really well done!

Photo of cdkrenz
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Orangish-amber hue to the body with a pale tan head with nice stamina.

S - Grapefruit and citrus infused hops aroma. Just a hair sweet otherwise perfect.

T - Hops are of cedar and citrus with a backlash of alcohol toward the end and into the finish.

M - The feel is soft and easy flowing despite the alcohol.

~ This is a great brew. I'm lucky to have it. I recommend to all fans of IPAs, give it a shot. Thanks again to Mike and Ranee.

Photo of jgasparine
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Poured from the bottle with a thin, white foamy head, which quickly dissipated. The body was an opaque orange/copper color, with no visible carbonation.

S- Citrus and piney hop aromas meet sweet and sticky caramel malt aromas in the nose... plain, simple, and BIG.

T- Upon first sip, the cirtus/piney hop flavors punch through the anticipated blanket of sweet/sticky caramel malt... then the hops begin the dominate the beverage halfway through... eventually, the hop flavors seem to "float" above the malt in two disconnected layers. (This "disconnect" between the flavors causes the beer to lose a Taste point in my book.) The finish is long, hot with alcohol, and a pronounced hop bitterness.

M- Big firm body- slightly chewy and textured with unattenuated sugar... lots of medium (slightly coarse) carbonation.

D- The disconnect between the hop and malt characters were a bit let-down for me... and at 11% ABV, I don't feel PARTICULARLY compelled to go out of my way again anytime soon... but I certainly wouldn't turn it down if a friend were offering!!

Photo of BigAl723
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Ashley's in Ann Arbor.

A: Beautiful gold with a splash of copper thrown in. Outstanding looking head that must have been at least an inch and a half.

S: Grapes, fruits, citrus, tangerine, as well as a little tart also. A very interesting smelling DIPA. I knew I had to dive right into it.

T: This was the most interesting aspects of this beer, the taste. I have very rarely had a DIPA where it hits you up front with the big DIPA taste and then seems to dissipate into such a smooth and relaxed finish. I seriously couldn't taste the 11% ABV at all. It's an outstanding tasting brew. Lots of hops, bitterness, and funky fruits like; orange, lemon zest, tart grapes, etc.

M: Medium mouth. Real smooth finish like I mentioned above. Very unique. Medium to medium high carbonation.

D: Well the smooth finish really gives this beer great drinkability. Because the ABV is hidden so well I give the drink at least an A.

Overall, I'm not sure if I liked this better than the Oak Aged or not. Both are very good but Unearthy seems to take the cake. I like the bitterness and the hops better than the Oak Aged taste. Another good one from Southern Tier.

Photo of JanM
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured in a nice amber color, and with little foam. The smell was of spicy hops, artificicial, foamy candy and sweet caramel. The taste was strong on alcohol, sweet, with a distinct licorice note and a dry end. It was the thick, solid taste of good quality brew but maybe not quite up to my expectations on an excelent imperial pale ale.

Photo of Freethyhops
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

almost half a 22oz bottle poured into a sweetwater pint.

A- there must have been some sediment at the bottom of the bottle. I got the second half of the pour and mine us much hazier and a lighter amber color. judging from my friends glass. dark near opaque amber. less than a finger of white head. not a whole lot of lacing for an IPA. looks to be nice and balanced.

S- not a huge aroma here. mostly fresh hops with a slight citrus twinge.

T- pretty much the same as the aroma with a good heavy bitterness. nothing exceptional in the aroma and taste. but definitely has all the right qualities for a IIPA. not in the elite class, but definitely a good one.

M- good crispness is provided from the carbonation. not extremely thick or resinous. but not thin. a nice viscosity.

D- definitely no problem taking down my serving. it's even later in the night, and it's still going down very easily.

Photo of Knecht
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is now the 200th bottle I've added to my collection (I turned 21 last December), so I finally feel semi-worthy of actually reviewing. This is my first review, so here goes...

Poured from a 650ml bottle into a tulip glass. Had a decent single-finger head that quickly disappeared. Was a very nice caramel color that looked quite enticing. Had a nice hoppy aroma that was fairly balanced between floral and citrus, and also some caramel sweetness. It's decent and inviting, but nothing terribly new or exciting.

On a first taste, it had a nice strong hop presence off the bat that faded rather quickly for a relatively soft finish (for a DIPA). The alcohol is definitely present (as one would imagine for 11% abv), but is not overwhelming and masked pretty well. The hops don't necessarily lean one way or the other between floral and citrus, and there's some caramel and maybe even a bit of smokiness.

The mouthfeel has a good level of carbonation and solid weight. With such a high abv, this isn't a beer you would want to pound all night long, but that's about what you would expect for a DIPA.

Overall, the beer has pretty decent balance with a nice malt backbone. The quick fade of the hops is a bit disappointing, but at least it packs a good punch at first. I think this is a solid, fairly standard DIPA; it's pretty decent and I don't really have anything negative to say about it, but certainly nothing to write home about.

Photo of HopBacchus
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank a pint on draft

A: Copper orange hue a nice fomay white head and impressive lacing

S: Hoppy with citrus notes

T: Extremely hoppy and pleasent its very diffuclt to detect any alchohol citrus notes and faint maltiness come through

M: surprisingly creamy with medium carbonation finishes a bit drier

D: for a hop bomb this goes down extremely smoothly i couldn't even tell that this thing was 11% wow i could get smashed on this

for someone who is really into malt bombs this is a great way to get into hoppy brews this beer was excellent

Photo of casemw
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep copper color with white, foamy head and sticky lacing.

S-Hoppy, got to be cascade in the last few hop additions of this one.

T-Very malty/sweet with tons of hops. Hard to find the alcohol in this one.

M-Pretty smooth with a bitter aftertaste.

D-Only had about 5 oz, but very drinkable given the abv. 11%?! Wow.

Photo of biggred1
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange amber with a huge creamy tan head that leaves rings of sticky lace behind on the glass as it slowly melts. The nose is citric hop notes and molasses. The flavors of grapefruit and orange with dark fruit and caramelized brown sugar work nicely together forming a really well balanced and different DIPA. The alcohol is very well hidden for such a big beer. The mouthfeel is medium heavy with smooth carbonation. A good drinking well malted beer that walks a fine line between barleywine and DIPA.

Photo of nick76
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The aroma has pine, wood, citrus, caramel, and incense. The appearance is hazy amber with a foamy head. The flavor is like the aroma with a robust hop character as well as plenty of sweet malt to balance. The palate is smooth and full. Overall this is a rich beer despite not being super complex.

Photo of Anthony1
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Copper color, very clear. No head or very little. Sticky 'tho. I would prefer more head. Maybe my pour was less than good.
S: wow, a very strong aroma. I could smell this beer without my nose being close to the glass. I get mainly hops, resinous and some grapefruit. I notice the alchohol.
T: Bitter in a strange, but good, way. I notice the hops but also the alchohol. Some notes of caramel, yeah caramel first then it has a bitter finish. Very well done.
M: Full bodied beer and very complex. Harmonious in the mouth.
D: Awesome for this kind of beer... and dangerously since it is 11%.

Photo of kurp001
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber bought at Shawan Liquors

A moderate pour yields a two finger cream-colored, rocky head that holds up pretty nicely. Body is a bright reddish amber.

Smell consists of a very strong citrus hop aroma, along with a very faint sweetness.

Up front I can taste more of a citrus hop flavor, accompanied by a faint biscuit malt presence. Unfortunately, I find the overall sweetness on this one to be a little too much for me, though.

Mouthfeel is pleasantly full-bodied, not too thick but just about where I like to see a double IPA.

I would rate the drinkability much higher were it not for the sweetness, but I will say that one major positive of this aspect of the beer is how effectively it hides the sizeable 11% ABV. Ultimately I'd say this is a good double IPA, but they didn't really knock it out of the park with this one.

Photo of Richardberg
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: amber-orange with a small white head.

S: very citrusy, sweet, floral, fruity

T: strong pale malt are front & center despite (obviously) ample hopping. Bitter but doesn't make you pucker. Alky amazingly well hidden for 11%. Slightly sweet, in a good way. Great balance.

M: fizzy and nice. Medium body.

D: surprisingly drinkable for such a high gravity beer. Not an IPA person but I'd buy again. Be careful, easy to overdo!

Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,781 ratings.