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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

2,825 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,825
Reviews: 1,189
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.55%
Wants: 129
Gots: 285 | 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:
Beer added by: John on 02-24-2006

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,825 | Reviews: 1,189 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bigkahunas4
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber served in the SA Boston Lager glass.

Appearance: Poured a light honey color with some copper highlights. There was an initial finger head, that eventually turned into a nice bubbly film. Lots of sticky lacing.

Smell: A very sweet nose - ton of sweet honey up front. Also picking up some woody hops as well.

Taste: Begins with a real nice, sweet malt profile. Tons of sweet bread notes. Moves to a slightly stale hop background - with hints of wood and grapefruit rind. Very nice balance, and really completely masking this huge ABV (uh oh).

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly on the lighter side of a medium body. Some subtle upfront viscosity, followed my some welcomed sticky tanins.

Drinkability: Fantastically smooth for such a high ABV. You really could fly through this - which is somewhat of a scare. Maybe not my favorite IIPA, but certainly up there with its own unique characteristics. Two thumbs way up.

Photo of beersheppard
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: orange, slightly cloudy, nice white head, good lacing.

Smell: malts and hops

Taste: piney, citrus, not overly hoppy, sweet with hop finish. The 11% alcohol is not overpowering, but present.

Mouthfeel: substantial, decent tingle.

Drinkability: very tastey IPA with a great malt back bone.

Photo of tadowdaddy
3.81/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Beautiful clear amber with finger length head. Left a nice spider like lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Fruity hops and tons of caramel malt. Couldn't get any other smells out of this one.

T- To me, tastes like it smells. I love hops, so this one was a pretty decent beer. Definitely not a super complex tasting beer. Could definitely taste the alcohol after swallowing it.

M- Felt great in the mouth. Not too thick, not too light. Very good aftertaste of caramel malts and alcohol. I liked the combination.

D- Not my absolute favorite beer, due to the lack of complexity, but drinkable enough. Would definitely give it another shot. For an over 10% DIPA, probably one of the biggest alcohol tastes I've encountered.

Photo of jwinship83
3.99/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- copper to amber in color under a modest off white head.

S- very hoppy with lots of balancing caramelly malts.

T- massive blast of hops on the finish. very bitter. lots of citrus/pine/flowers. decent amount of alcohol in here too.
its 11%, what should i expect? warms all the way down

M- sticky and coating. rather thick.

D- one bottle is enough. the bitter blast of hops at the end combined with the massive amount of booze will do that to you.
another solid offering from Southern Tier at a fair and reasonable price.

Photo of mnapier
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving Temperature, 50 degrees. Serving Glassware, 12 ounce tulip.

A copper & clear colored ale that pours a strong initial foamy head and quickly receding lace and no foam.
The nose is interesting in between the grapefruit citrus mixed in with some pine and a medium alcohol nose.
Pine hops, mild earth (grass like) tones and a dry finish and a medium mouthfeel.

Who's up for some ham and bacon.

Cheers

Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.78/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Nose is moderately hoppy - floral, fruity, and perfumy. Chocolate malt and citric notes.

Pours a medium gold with good clarity, moderate head with pretty good retention for 11%.

First sip brings sweetness, maltiness, fruity hops (V8-like), and a mouthful of bitterness. Doesn't at all taste like 11%. Pretty tame hop profile despite the over-bearing V8 fruit/vegitable flavor. Good tartness. Very dry with mild bitter/grassy hop tannin powderiness.Pretty sweet (mild-to-moderate). Mild grainy clean malt flavor, mostly dimensionless, Almost sticky sweet like fruit juice. There is indeed a lot of malt in here. Too much residual sugar for me.

Moderately-thick-to-thick body, mild carbonation. Sinister.

Not my favorite. Okay sipped, but in general it is way too sweet and just not hoppy enough.

Photo of bkilpatr
3.54/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a Chimay glass. 10/23/08.

Pours a deep orange-amber color with a thin half-finger of beige head. The head quickly faded to a very thin layer. Aroma is intense with caramel malt, citrusy hops, coriander, and grapefruit.

Taste starts with a lot of sweet caramel malt. That is quickly followed by bitter citrusy and earthy hops. Plenty of grapefruit, orange, and tangerine. Slight tea-like flavor as well with a touch of honey. The alcohol is very noticeable to me, detracting from the taste. Not as hoppy as some IIPAs, but still well-balanced.

Feel is thick and syrupy. Carbonation is a tad low. Dry finish. Drinkability is alright. It tastes pretty good, but the alcohol is too high (11%) for me.

Overall, pretty good for a IIPA. Well balanced between the malts and hops.

Photo of Jwale73
4.29/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in my DT tulip. Poured a translucent copper with copious tiny bubbles present in solution. Quarter in foamy head quickly dissipated into a bubbly/soapy skim. Virtually no lacing on this one. Nose is piney, caramel and sweet. Some citrus character, but subdued; no grapefruit here. Taste follows nose - malt is picked up in the mouth, followed by sweet and culminating in a slightly bitter/astringent finish. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and slightly viscous, with a light carbonation burn detectable towards the back. Really easy drinking and tastey. I have to say that I'm not generally a fan of IPAs, but I am really starting to fall in love with DIPAs.

Photo of cvstrickland
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 22-ounce bomber bottle, courtesy of my LNBA brother-in-arms Lum, poured into a large tulip glass yields an orangey-golden amber body with a thick, glossy cap off creamy, bright ivory foam. The head hangs around, slowly settling, and leaves plenty of lacing on the glass.

The smell is citrusy, herbal hops with a rich, sweet-smelling toasty malt backbone. Peppery, spicy notes emerge as the drink warms.

The taste is deeply-toasted malts with a citrus edge and an herbal hop bite. The malt and grain profile is remarkably solid, taking toasty-sweet precedence over the drink, but the hops are undeterred by the grainy oppression and keep on coming on. Fruity notes of alcohol evolve as the drink warms, masquerading as either fruit or peppery spice at a whim. An earthy dryness brings a little dust to the finish.

Souther Tier's Unearthly is silky-soft, on the full side of medium-bodied, and damned near quaffable. I was surprised to find a brew sporting Chinook and Cascade in the boil, Styrian Goldings in the backing, and dry-hopped with C-hops a-go-go to be such a friendly, sweet and malty brew. Don't get me wrong, the beer is plenty hoppy, but I find I'm enjoying this maltier variation on the theme as much as any other of the monster hop-bombs endemic to the DIPA style. Thanks, again Lum!

Photo of Tolann
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Hazy golden yellow. white head and lacing.

S- Lots of nose. It's over there, and I smell it here. Lots of smoothed out hops. Big orangey up front and piney follows. All smoothed over with malt

T- Lots of hops and some malt at the end. Big bitter at the back of my throat. A bit of bready malt at the end of the sip

M- Kind of a dry sharp hoppiness. Then kinda juicy after the sip. Some after taste and almost a warming, tho not an alcohol heat. light to medium mouth feel..

D- Pretty nice! I love the big citrus nose on this. I wish I could get more!

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

Got a 22 oz. bottle of this beer in a trade with orcasteve. Thanks.

Pours a very clear light amber - beautiful beer. One finger white head which faded while drinking. Left lacing all the way down the glass.

A very hoppy nose with malt undertones. Taste is hop forward with a lightly sweet finish. Very good balance for this style of beer - many IIPA's that I have tried are too hoppy at first and too sweet on the finish.

Nice mouthfeel on the tongue - the hops work their magic on the taste buds. This beer hides the 11% alcohol well.

Overall a very good beer - hoppy with enough malt to balance it without being cloying in the finish. Very drinkable for a high alcohol beer.

Photo of erikm25
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: 22oz bomber poured into fluted glass. A glowing balance of peached amber and flame thrower orange coloring. Sits crisp and translucent in the glass with deep golden hues. Head is massive, billowing, and creamy. Abundant off white lacing.

S: This is sharp on orangey citrus hops and floral aromas. The cascade and centennial hops are heavy in the nose. Nice scents of spicy pine and and sweet ice glazed flowers with coupling malt spine.

T: Incredibly well balanced. The hoppy taste is there but balanced against sugary pale malts. Alcohol is not even present which is amazing considering the percentage. Grapefruit sting and piney hops with a light sweet honey malt . Spruced peppering and earthy tang making it not only crisp but varied and complex.

M: Moderate body and with medium carbonation to help keep this long lasting. Rich with a nice oily mouth feel.

D: Southern Tier delivers. 11% that drinks like half that. I'll leave it to the bottle to sum this one up: "To underestimate Unearthly is to trifle with the mysteries of the universe."

Photo of travisd13
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a N.B. tulip.

A- Pours a cloudy burnt / copper orange with 1/2" off white head.

S- Aromas of citrus fruits...from the cascade hops? A sweet malt presents along with a hint of alcohol.

T- The 11% of this beer is very well hidden behind sweet malts and some hops. I'm wishing the hops had more of a presents.

M- Medium to thicker mouthfeel for a DIPA...also a little on the dryier side. Pretty sticky.

D- Pretty drinkable...for 11%! Not my fav for the style but still a very nice offering.

Photo of Beerzebub
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a big wine glass at 50 F/ 10 C.

Bright golden-orange color, finger of dense eggshell colored head, solid lace.

Smells like sweet doughy malt, citrusy and tropical hops, tea, and a bit of brininess like sea air. Cohesive and pleasant.

Tastes like sweet candied orange, grapefruit, and a bit of pineapple. Sweet malt and fresh hop flavor harmonize. Alcohol is detectable, but quite mild. A bit of black tea flavor. Medium bitterness. Dries out somewhat towards the finish, achieving some balance. Lingering bittersweet spicy fruit. Tasty.

Smooth, leaving some stickiness. Quite drinkable, considering the huge malt bill.

I enjoyed this.

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.2/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Originally reviewed in 2008 with a 3.4 overall.

New review from 10/12/2012. Thanks to angrybabboon for sharing the bottle.

Appearance: Deep amber/orange. Head is white, loose and creamy. Tiny collar. Some lacing notches. Clear and clean.

Smell: Malty. Biscuity and sweet caramel. Orange flesh and grapefruit oil. Citrus flesh as a whole. Juicy, super juicy. Some underlying mint. Rind and some pithy bitterness. Big sweetness from the malts. Mildly tropical as in slight hints of tangerine.

Taste: Gritty malts. Earthy and herbal. Some backing floral elements. Super malty. Caramel sweetness. Biscuity. Dry faint spiciness. Densely herbal. Grapefruit rind, oily, pithy bitterness. Lingering sweetness. Mega malty. Fresh, it's big and sweet. As it warms the malts tend to dominate as the hops thin out and just feel spicy and vaguely herbal mixed in to a sweet malt juice.

Mouthfeel: Body pushes full but ultimately ends in the medium range. Carbonation is moderate, but it struggles to pull through the borderline syrupy and smooth mouthfeel. So smooth.

Overall: It's like going to kill a Colossus and realizing it's just a garden statue.

So sweet it's distracting. This is a dessert IPA. So much sweetness with a struggling malt profile. This was a titan of my first year of drinking. Time is a cruel mistress.

Photo of deanhead
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice Gold to medium Amber color
Smell is earthy and musty.
Taste is earthy, and hot with fusel alcohols,
Extremely bitter. this beer's bitterness clings on through to the end.
Medium bodied, dank beer.
This is an okay beer, not the greatest IPA, and certainly not the worst. In this world of beer were IPA's are seeminlgy ubiquitiuos this one chimes in as average

Photo of rkuhnel
4.63/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A huge thanks for Andy in NY for trading me this great beer. This poured in to my Duvel glass a very clear copper color with a nice solid and long lasting head that left great lacing on the glass. This was at 42 degrees as recommended on the bottle. Nose was very strong with lots of citrus, pine, and some fruit. Very rich and almost slick mouthfeel. Flavor is powerful and full of solid flavors that tend toward ripe fruits. Long bitter finish. This is a complex beer which might not please everyone but I like this kinds of brew. The alcohol is present but at 11 percent what can you expect. This is not the same as Pliny the Elder which I had a bottle of the night before, but in its own way is almost as good. Thanks Andy for a simply superb beer.

Photo of explosivebeer
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a nice light orange with a thin white head. The aroma is loaded with hops but balanced with some malty sweetness. It has a full body with solid bitterness to balance out the imperial maltiness. It finishes well and leaves you wanting more. Overall, a very good beer.

Photo of lpayette
4.44/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yet another ST brew in my quest to try their full line up. How many beers do they have anyway? And how many are amazing like this one? It seems they all are

The appearance is pretty average as far as double IPAs go. Nice clarity, decent head, but not much lacing and retention. Can't complain about it though.

Smell is straight up hop bomb with an emphasis on cascade. Deeper whiffs reveal layers of sweet almost honey-like malt.

Taste- The taste is well... unearthly. You would never guess this was 11%. Maybe 8 or 9, but not 11. I could see this being off the charts if there was a slight vanilla/oak taste to it. It's actually got a decent malt and hop balance.

I can't say anything bad about the mouthfeel and this is yet another outstandingly drinkable beer from Southern Tier. My only question is when can we expect to see distribution in VT? We're not too far away!

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

Deer copper orange with a thin white head. Aroma of grapefruit, caramel malt and pine. Oily at 1st hen there is a big hop bite and a dry finish. Alcohol is somewhat noticeable. Very good imperial. This is a complex beer which might not please everyone but I like this kinds of brew.

Photo of ckeegan04
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Cloudy light bronze color with a one finger off-white head. Decente retention and lacing. Looks like a good DIPA but not great.

S - Aroma of tropical and citrus fruits from the nice mix of c-hops. Aroma is not as strong as many DIPA's, but it smells darn good. Hints of alcohol underneath.

T - Nice brown sugar sweetness initially before being overcome by candied grapefruit and pineapple tastes. An excellent job of balancing while still giving a nice hop kick. Finishes with a mild bitterness and dark sweetness that lingers on the tongue.

M/D - Medium to full bodied beer that coats your mouth in brown sugar sweetness. The bitterness is strong but doesnt knock you out keeping this beer very drinkable. An exceppetn DIPA.

Photo of jkdrummer
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice copper golden hue. Nice thick head that slowly dissolves into a thin lace. Aroma is nice and hoppy as one can expect. Initial is one of ALCOHOL! Wow, some bitterness and creamy flavors including vanilla flavors and pine notes. Alcohol warmness dominates. Not the best IPA but one hell of a wallop. Recommended.

Jk

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

An amber to golden color, with a two finger thick head, cream in color; dissolving away slowly, leaving a white lacing down the glass. A floral fragrance at the start, with a touch of grass and pine in the scent. There is a hint of malty sweetness at the end. The comes out out the start of the taste, then the hop onslaught begins. The hops bring on the flavors of pine, blending to a strong grapefruit and earthy flavors. A light to watery feel at the front, but it quickly gains weight to become a much more heavier feel. A strong Imperial IPA, with an incredible aroma, an intense flavor, that is never overwhelming. Throw this at some hot wings, some really hot wings, or some spicy pad thai.

Photo of trbergman
3.94/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

10 oz pour on draft at the GCB in Providence.

Appearance - Copper, with a white head that quickly reduced to a fine lace.

Smell - Tons of hops! Grapefruit, pine, and pineapple.

Taste - Bitter up front with sweet maltiness in the middle. Caramel, maybe a little toast. A real hop bomb with plenty of grapefruit and pine flavors.

Mouthfeel - Chewy, medium body. It's ok, nothing really special for a DIPA.

Drinkability - A little too hoppy and alcoholic to drink more than one, maybe two.

Photo of ommegoose
3.71/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I continue to work through my mission to try all of Southern Tier's big beers. They need to start dating their beers though.

Does a lot better with head retention than many other ST brews. Leaves rather thick and even sheets up the back half of the glass. Color is a clear golden orange. Well done.

I'm a little surprised to be hit with sweetness at first, like an earthy honey, followed by mint. The overt malty smell makes me wonder if this has some age on it, but I have no way to know. Some caramel malt. Less resinous hops than expected, but they're there. Usual C-hops.

This surely must pack a ton of IBUs. It's like the bitterness stings my entire tongue. That, and the 11%. I can't say it's especially well hidden. The hop profile doesn't strike me as citrusy or fruity all that much. Lots of leafy, herbal, grassy flavor. I get more mint leaf here than in other IIPAs or IPAs I've had. Some pine. Some bitter grapefruit rind. It took some time before I started to really experience a fruity blend of hop flavors, but even then, the heavy bitterness renders them unfamiliar. Malt profile is sufficient. Caramelly sweetness, enough to add some balance. Finishes with heavy dry bitterness and a long-lingering herbal flavor. Despite some features I don't like, it offers enough complexity and interesting flavors to enjoy.

This is just kind of hard on the tongue. Some richness. Not too slick.

Eh, I was expecting way more here. As it stands, this doesn't come close to Hoppe for me. I've got many more IIPAs to try before I come back to this one. If I know I'm getting it fresh, then maybe another try. Gets a few points for just being interesting, and worth examining again and again. It's boozy though, and probably one to split unless you have some time to spare. If I ever want something especially harsh and extreme, I know where to go.

Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,825 ratings.