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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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2,828 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,828
Reviews: 1,190
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.55%
Wants: 129
Gots: 287 | 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: 2,828 | Reviews: 1,190 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MrBendo
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to AdamB84 for the bomber. Clear orange color with a medium head. Spare lacing. Hoppy aroma of citrus (grapefruit, mostly), pineapple and other tropical fruit. Taste was nearly the same with just a touch of sugary, malt sweetness. West coast balanced, for sure. (Hop) Oily texture. Maybe the finish could be described at bittersweet, but I definitely wouldn't say bitter. An east coast winner.

Photo of doppelmeup
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This poured a sunshine yellow. The lacing stuck to the glass in little clumps, no doubt due to the very high ABV. The head lasted all the way down the glass, but was never huge.

Citrusy, orange, grapefruit and a sweet smell as well. I was expecting more of an in-your-face hop aroma, given the high IBU content. But this is more balanced.

Lots of hops great the palate, and the beer is surprisingly dry as it starts out. But as it warms, it definitely develops a sweetness. Alcohol is very well hidden.

A dry finish that slowly softens as the beer warms.

Overall, a solid brew, but the ABV definitely limits the drinkability. When I compare this other Double IPAs, I find it to be a very solid competitor, looking to breakthrough for a shot at the title.

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

If the 153 IBU’s is indeed accurate this is just one incredibly well-balanced IIPA.

Pours a bright and thick amber -orange color. Props up a pretty 1/2" off-white, creamy and dense head. Decent head retention prevails throughout the glass with only spotty lacing.

Aroma definitely is hop-dominated with rich, luscious notes of pink grapefruit, lemon zest, pine needles, fresh cut grass and spices. A whiff of lightly toasted malts sneak through in the background also.

Palate is just as silky smooth and creamy as can be. Subtle carbonation and a pleasant oiliness makes it just slide down the throat nicely.

Flavor is just so well balanced between the malts and 153 IBU’s its just incredible. I was expecting a big blast of hop bitterness on my first sip but was greeted with a pleasant caramel/toffee sweetness followed by the crisp, muscular "BIg C" hop presence in the finish.

This beer is a must try for any and all who can get their paws on a bottle. Just wish I brought a case back from NJ instead of just 2 measley bottles!!

Photo of umustdrink
4.52/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Got this in a trade from BeerTruth

A - A radiant dark orange color. Head faded rather quickly to a thick film, with a thick rocky ring around the edge.

S - Smell is a piny resiny hop with a bready, spicy and brown sugary sweet malts. Unlike a typical double IPA, the hops play background here...and the malts smell very nice.

T/M - Taste starts out with a sharp carbonation bite and an oily hoppy taste, again complemented by rich, spicy, cinnamony malts. Taste sweetens out a bit then finishes biscuity with the faintest sensation of warming alcohol.

D - A very well balanced IPA, which is always good in my opinion.

Photo of YonderWanderer
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: An aggressive pours yields a bold orange color with a finger of foam. Not much lacing is left behind.

S: Hops. Sweet, citrusy hops. Lots of fruit, lemon, grapefruit, and more. Some sugary sweetness is present as well.

T: Hops explode across the palate in a variety of citrus fruits, with some hints of pine and grass as well. A sweet malt provides a level of balance. The alcohol warms a little bit in the middle. Very well balanced for something this intense.

M: A crisp finish with a lingering hop taste. A bit of alcohol warmth lingers in the throat as well.

D: This is a tasty DIPA - not my favorite, but a really good offering. Very tasty and surprisingly balanced for the hop hit that comes through.

Photo of irishkyle21
4.67/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an orangish color. Fair size head, decent retention, good amounts of lacing mark the glass.

The nose is bursting with hops, citrus, orange, tropical fruits. All the good stuff.

An abundance of hops hit the palate. Lots of citrus, grapefruit, the malts balances everything nicely. A very highly drinkable DIPA. The alcohol is completely undetectable to me. This is an amazing brew glad to have had the opportunity to buy a couple.

Photo of edbeered
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle, this is a pleasing pale amber color, with a scant white head and minimal white lacing on the glass. There is a faint hop and butterscotch aroma. The taste is of intense piney and citrussy hops(grapefruit and lemon), along with a sweet caramel/butterscotch malty flavor, as well as a cherry/plum brandy fruitiness. The multiple flavors blend smoothly. The mouthfeel is amazingly light and refreshing for a beer measuring 11%ABV. While many will appreciate this IIPA for the hops alone, it is the blending of other diverse flavors into a unique whole that makes this such a memorable brew. Bravo!

Photo of emerge077
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served cold at 42º as the bottle suggests.

Pours a deep amber jewel tone into a fluted Ommegang glass. Skim of foam across the liquid, spotty lacing. A second pour has better results, two fingers of foam and sheets of lacing.

Fresh hop aroma, with pale malt in there too. Slightly herbal and sweet. Clean and inviting.

First impression is big juicy hops, countered by a deep earthy quality that is intertwined with maltiness toward the end. Grassy, herbal, resiny finish. It feels big, but the alcohol doesn't interfere.

Mildly viscous on the palate, saturated with hop oils. It is really super smooth.
Have one bottle yourself, or share with a friend. This one deserves the praise it gets...On a final note, please send JAH-VA to IL!!

Photo of hustlemuscle
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky and busy. Decent head, apricot color. As smooth a DIPA as I have ever had. Piney, candy and citrus melded together very perfectly. Balanced well by a gentle malt undercurrent. Easy drinkin' for a big beer, they should sixerize it so that one can do other thinks besides forget what they were going to do after drinking an entire bottle.

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

(Served in a Samuel Adams Boston Lager glass)

A- This beer pours a crystal clear golden-caramel color with a bubbly white head and a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles. The head last as a thin foam for the full beer.

S- This beer has a sweet malty smell with a light toasted note and a big green spicy hop nose.

T- This beer has big bitty green hops with a pineapple weed pungency and a slight earthyness. There is a spicy flavor to the hops at the finish. The smooth green bitterness lingers for a moment after each finish.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with no alcohol heat and a smooth finish.

D- This beer is a nice big IPA with some nice, no citrus, hops flavors and some good support from the sweet malt.

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

Clear copper apricot body with a dense finger of lacy meringue head, faintly khaki color. Bright citrusy hop nose with fresh grapefruit, tart pineapple, fruit cocktail, and boozy apricots. Butterscotch malt sweetness provides a nice contrast.

Toasted malt and "unearthly" hop bitterness up front. Some citrus and some light pine. Fruit cocktail, pear brandy, butterscotch malts, and spices mid-palate. Sharper, more herbal bitterness comes on strong in the finish, along with a noticeable alcohol kick. Careful with this one! Medium-full body with a very creamy, smooth feel. Very nice DIPA, if a little boozy.

Photo of ski271
4.6/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Zeno’s in State College, PA
A: Hazy, vibrant, slightly ruddy amber with a small, off-white, foamy head that quickly diminishes to a lasting film. Good lacing.
S: VERY inviting hops aromas. Pine with orange and grapefruit. Very mild malt presence.
T: An initial quick zip of malty caramel sweetness, which is soon joined by the intense hops flavors of pine and citrus. They stay in excellent balance (especially for the style) until the hops flavors and bitterness take over on the finish. Some warming alcohol on the finish as well.
M: Full body, dry texture, moderate-low carbonation
D: This is a very good double IPA. A hop bomb of wonderful flavors but with an excellent balance, something that is too often way off with this style. I loved this beer and would definitely have it again. Worth seeking out.

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

A: poured a golden/light amber color with a thick head, creamy enough to eat with a spoon. Sticky resinous lacing.

S: Citrus, Pine, resinous hops, sweet caramel malts

T: Loads of sweet malt and massive hops. Very well balanced for something of this size.

M: Creamy yet sparkling with oily resin

D: one or two bombers and you're good - REAL good. This was amazing and a joy to drink.

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

Deep golden colour, a bit murky with a touch of orange. Bubbly white head, half a finger and less. Very good lacing, cloudy. Hoppy nose, floral, spice, citrus, ether with slow but determined carbonation.

In the mouth, kick-ass hops and fire, reminiscent of Stone Ruination which, coincidentally, was the first beer I reviewed on this site. At times the mouthfeel is smooth and a bit citrus but your mouth is hot at the same time. Bitter aftertaste - wow! As it warmed, more heat in the mouth. I thought that the big alcohol backdrop detracted marginally from the drinkability factor. Nonetheless, this will not soon be forgotten. I'm reminded of the BA principle: "Respect Beer": this beer aggressively demands your respect. It's like drinking The Terminator of Imperial IPA's, as if to say, "I'll be Back!" ... and so it likely will be seeing as a trip to the States and back can be done in a day from here.

Drinking this bottle was like an event, the words "vigorously hopped" appear on the bottle and are an understatement. Thanks to my beer buddy for another 'hit out of the beer park'!

Photo of tpd975
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice amber color with a nice foaming head that leaves behind nice lacing.

S: Big sweet pine aroma. There is a hint of pepper and citrus as well.

T: Wow nice big sweet. Tons of Toffee, Brown Sugar, and Caramel. The hops do power thru though with citrus being the dominant flavor. Tons of flavor. What a brew man what a brew.

M: Nice and full bodied, wonderful tasting beer.

D: Off the scale here. The ABV is off the charts, but man this is a great brew.

Overall: The best ST brew yet. Tons of flavor man. SOOO complex. This beer is a beer that any brewer would be proud of. BeerTruth send more please.

Photo of david131
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- A perfectly clear golden and coppery beverage. A nice white head that leads to a thin coving over the entire top. Leaves some good lacing.

S- Grassy, piney, and citrusy. A nice strong caramely malt backing. No alcohol really in the smell.

T- Sweet caramel up front. A little peppery. Grass, pine, and citrus. Just a little warming alcohol, but not harsh at all. Very impressive for an 11% DIPA.

M- A little drying, but sweet, warming, and crisp. Good carbonation.

D- For an 11% DIPA this is damn tasty and really took care of business last night.

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

Poured from a 22oz bomber brought home from a recent NYC trip. Amber colored with a nice big three finger head. Smell hoppy with the standard pine and citrus notes. Flavor is big and hoppy. Piney and grapfruit hop flavors with a nice carmel malt to balance it out. Nicely balanced in the flavor department. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with decent carbo. Very drinkable for the style. The hops do not wear out the palate as bad as others in the style do.

Overall a great IIPA. I wish I had another!

Photo of far333
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Crystal clear and shiny copper colored with thin streams of bubbles rising from bottom to top. A lumpy head of fine off-white bubbles sits atop and about a half inch of foam stubbornly remains.

Big aroma of sweet malt, luscious brown sugar, and ripe fruit. Not overly hoppy, but scents of citrus rise up.

Flavors of sweet and mouth-filling malt, chewy and full of body, cinnamon and toffee, soft ripe fruits, just a light hint of the powerful octane that lies beneath. Grainy brown sugar, light caramel and butterscotch. More malty than hoppy. Actually surprisingly low hop profile, but some citrus rind does emerge in the finish. Expected more, but I am enjoying this beer because the malty flavors are fantastic.

Rich and full mouthfeel, not too tingly, moderate carbonation. Pretty drinkable for the level of alcohol that this one delivers.

Photo of geexploitation
3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very clear, dark amber with incredibly bright higlights of gold. Very little head -- just a collar. The nose is very minty, but the hops are joined by a barleywine-esque graham crackery, sweet malt note. The nose reminds me of Anchor Old Foghorn. On the palate, brisk carbonation and fruity, juicy sweetness crop up first, before being matched by minty hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is marked by big carbonation, big alcoholic burn and an almost cloying maltiness. Overall, this is a good double IPA. Not my favorite style, but good considering the competition.

Photo of cooncat
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving from an undated 22 oz. bomber. Review date of 8-29-07

On the pour, you get a copper colored brew, with an off-white creamy head that is huge. The head slowly shrinks, but leaves a covering all the way to the bottom. Sheets of lacing cover the side of the glass.

The nose isn't as huge as the advertised 153 IBUs would lead you to expect. Nevertheless, a piney/grassy hop presence is in the forefront and impressive.

The taste is well balanced. Pine/grassy hops blend almost perfectly with a caramel malt flavor. By swirling the liquid in your mouth, you can fully appreciate the complexity of the brew. The 11% ABV is noticeable in the taste, and with a bit of a warming effect. Enjoy responsibly! Mouthfeel is very full, almost chewy.

The finish is as balanced as the beginning, with caramel malts standing up to the hop onslaught. This is a massive brew, which could be a meal in itself. I think that if you have one bomber, you will be content to lie back in your favorite easy chair and enjoy the hop euphoria! Recommended!


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

A- Completely transparent medium amber colored body. Pours with a beautiful thick creamy off-white head. Head slowly tames to 1/2 finger and plenty of lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- Nose is a bouquet of different hop scents. I pick up a decent amount of floral, earthy, and herbal hops. Very subtle sweet caramel malt smell is noted.

T- Much like the smell. Herbal and earthy hops upfront with a solid but very subtle malt backbone. Finish is a very strong and refreshing mix of herbal and floral hops. Big herbal hop flavor lingers, along with a slight residual hop bitterness, an even more subtle sweet caramel malt flavor and alcohol burn. Surprised at the low bitterness and the lack of citrus hop flavor.

M- Medium to high carbonation with light oily body.

D- This DIPA is all about the hop flavor and has little hop bitterness. Its pretty ballsy of Southern Tier to release a DIPA that is 153 IBUs with such little bitterness (Its a good thing). The 11.00% ABV is almost undetectable by this brew. The taste suggests 6-7% tops. This is a good, drinkable DIPA that I will have again.

Photo of jackorain
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I purchased this beer in a botttle shop in Syracuse, NY last April and got to it this summer in August. I didn't see any date on the silked screened bottle so I don't know the age. More on this later.

A-Bright red, orange, near clear, really great color, it almost glows. 2 inch off-white head from semi aggressive pour into my duvel glass. Very good retention, the head took about 5 minutes to recede as I contemplated this and admnired the beauty of this one. The lacing was also nice with a splotchy swiss cheese and spiderweb combo all over the glass after the head receded. lace did remain as nice after each swallow. At this stage the lace was washed away and only left fleeting sheets of lacing on the drinking side of the glass.

S-Beautiful green and citrus hops. Tanbgerine and blood orange notes abounb in the nose of this one. Carmel and biscuit malts, some raisans are here as well. This beer is has a very complex aroma that increases in complexity as it warms. A more fruity aroma began to come out and the malts began to take over. While the citrus notes remained, it began to smell like a citrus salad sweetened with caramel. Very interesting nose I must say.

T-while the 1st hit was of citrus and green hops with slap of bitteness, it quicly subsided and was pushed back even further by a big sweet caramel malt center, with dried fruits here and there and some toffee. The citrus and hops retrurned for the finish but the bitterness did not linger as long as I would have expected given the bottle's pronouncement of 113 IBU's. As this baby warmed up it started to taste more like a barleywine. Maybe, I let this one sit for too long after purchase and the hops have subsided some.

M-creamy, oily medium to fill body for the style. Carboantion is present but does not overpower.

D-Well my 1st inclination was to give this a 4.0 on drinkability but as it warmed up and I'm sitting on my deck on a hot summer evening, it began to taste like a barleywine, and that was not what I was looking for. So I had to drop it down some. Also, at 11.00% ABV, how drinkable can it be?

Photo of bennetj17
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear copper appearance, half-inch head of off-white foam supported by medium paced streams of carbonation below. The foam holds nicely. Bright citrus hop nose, light sense of alcohol, with some caramel malt mostly staying in the background.

The toasty caramel sweetness comes out stronger in the taste, and the hops are milder now. The alcohol does get a bit drying, but it's well hidden otherwise. The finish leaves a pleasant bitterness. Medium thickness, lightly foamy on the palate creating a "full" mouthfeel, not thin.

I thought this beer had good balanced flavor, and it was pretty drinkable although it didn't blow me away. This one could age pretty well I bet. I usually like when a beer strikes a nice balance but for some reason I was hoping this one would have been more of a hop bomb. Recommended...

Photo of joe1510
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber

Recieved in trade via AdamB84. Thanks Adam. Southern Tiers Unearthly pours a glowing polished copper that is absolutely crystal clear. Streams of carbonation bubbles rise slowly to the two finger dense off-white eggshell head. Leaves sticky drink lines after each swig. Really good looking brew.

Big caramel malt backbone keeps Unearthly somewhat balanced but the hops still manage to grab the spotlight. There's layers of hoppiness. A solid dose of pine needles kick things off followed by sweetened grapefruit and even a hint of pineapple. From what I remember the only other beer I can remember having any pineapple aroma is Brian Boru. Very welcomed sugary sweetness to the aroma.

There's not much I can say about the flavor that hasn't already been said about the aroma. Every flavor melds together flawlessly. Smooth with a tremendous malt-to-hop balance letting the hops show through just a little more. Excellent!

Medium bodied with a heavenly lush, velvety mouthfeel. Just enough carbonation to ease this beer along. Gives a nice hop wash making the tongue slightly numb. Very nicely done.

For such a huge beer the drinkability is unbelievable. No trace of alcohol besides the warm cheeks. I could definately see me getting in trouble if this was sold locally.

My first offering and no matter wht I have to do wont be my last from Southern Tier. This is an incredibly tasty well balanced IIPA. I need to find somewhere to deliver a case of this to me. This beer is simply not of this Earth.

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

Poures a great golden copper with a nice head that carries great retention. Looks delicious. Smells of citrus, grapefruit, large hops, some floral and a tiny bit of sweetness. Tastes like grapefruit with a big hop finish. A lot of flavors in here but the hops are predominant as expected, and delicious. Not too bitter nor dry. Feels full in the mouth with great carbonation. Cant even detect alcohol. This is a classic and well balance DPA. A must try.

Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,828 ratings.