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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1,195 Reviews
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Reviews: 1,195
Hads: 2,904
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.29%
Wants: 134
Gots: 350 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,195 | Hads: 2,904
Photo of oakbluff
4.54/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber courtesy of HogTown Harry- can’t say enough good things about that beer swilling dude This is a kick ass beer. Plain and simple. My apologies to Fisherman34 for not saving this bottle to taste- its been a long week and I was in desparate need of hops. Sorry man Poured into a normal pint glass. Quite clear beer- usual IPA color with good head. Aroma is top shelf - a wave of amarillo hops hit me Sweet sweet amarillo hops. This may be the best aroma I’ve ever had the pleasure. Simply outstanding. My taste buds are watering at this point so time to dig in. Taste does not dissapoint. Hops assault my mouth, but in a very good way. Not astringent at all. The bittering hops are there don’t get me wrong, but the bitter holds its ground for just the right amount of time and then gives way to a malty sweetness and the aroma hops. If I had to fault this beer, it is on the sweet side, but given the 11%, not a surprise. Not overly sweet, I thought played well with the hops. The centennial and amarillo dry hopping is a nice touch and blend together wonderfully. This beer is all about the hops and hits the mark. Outstanding! (1,136 characters)

Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.66/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Michigan Brewing Company pint glass.
Poured a dark, ruby-brown color with only a slight head.
Beer looks very inviting from the appearance.
Smell is some slight hops. Not incredibly intense.
Taste is where this beer really shines. Very good hop taste and presence. Very bitter hops up front, buy very smooth on the mouth.
Mouthfeel is smooth, but not quite as refreshing as I like.
The label states that this beer is 11%, but it is nowhere to be found in either the taste or being felt.
A very good beer from Southern Tier. I'm still madly in love with their Jah-Va stout, but this is a nice change of pace. (627 characters)

Photo of blitz134
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Been wanting to try this for a while, finally got a bottle from jjayejaye, thanks...

Pours a nice clear copper color with some carbonation bubbles rising to the surface to support an eighth inch of offwhite head. Nice tight lacing left on the glass too.

Aroma is sweet and hop laden. Lots of caramel and candy sugar, a little sweet bubble gum and cotton candy. Floral and citrus hops dominate, tangerine and orange peels.

Pretty nice flavor with a lot of stuff going on, fairly balanced overall. A solid caramel backbone works underneath a lot of different hops flavors. Has a grapefruity edge and some bitter citrus pith flavors. Some floral hints work well with the caramel malts, but the finish has a nice bitter edge and a touch of pine sap to round it out. Good stuff. Alcoholic edge though.

Pretty thick mouthfeel, a bit oily. Carbonation levels are right on. Coats the mouth like sticky syrup, which for me hurts the drinkability a bit.

Good drinkability overall, a bit too sweet for me to have much more than this bomber. I like a drier, more resin-like DIPA personally. Its good stuff though and worth a try. (1,132 characters)

Photo of ommegangpbr
4.53/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This seems part of some east coast/ west coast hip-hop throw down. Take all the puns out of that as you like.
Unearthly Imperial IPA represents the east coast, yo.
Appearance wise, I can't ask for anything more from a double IPA. Beautiful clear copper color; I could watch tv through this pour if I so chose. Ample offwhite head that leaves lacing for days... or definitely will if I don't wash my glass right after I'm done.
Even when cold, vibrant citrus hop scents tackle the nostrils. Layers of scent develop as the brew warms; good quality marijuana comes to mind.
Flavors are juicy, fruity hop fluid. A hop bomb, yes, but with plenty of other flavors that tango on the tongue. Fresh pine, citrus oil blends, citrus juice blends; maybe even some Tropicana Orange-Strawberry-Banana juice.
Next to Great Divide's Hercules this is my favorite double IPA. I've yet to try the super upper class of the west coast IIPA's, but until then this will my standard. (959 characters)

Photo of blackie
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: The pour gives a low, white head that soon becomes a skinny ring. The beer is a rich medium-amber in color. Gorgeous color, but I would really like to see more head here.

smell: A nose of primarily evergreen hops with a floral touch dominate the sweet caramel malts and provide notes of passionfruit. Just the right touch of ethanol. Notes of cedar. Loads and loads of hops, and I like how it avoids being tealike. The malt is actually quite formidable, and carries the hops well on various fruity aromas (fig and cherry to name a couple). Even a touch of honey in there....wonderful aroma nearing a 5.

mouthfeel: The carbonation is smooth, just below medium...and the body full for the style. I'd like to feel it a little more after the swallow, I think.

taste: Big green hops run over a solid candy malt backbone. A moderate-high bitterness does a great job of cleaning up the finish. That pretty much sums it up. I had the taste at 4.5 at first, but had to take it down a notch. It is really good, but it just lacks something in the follow through. I think the malt fades a little fast, for one.

drinkability: certainly easy, especially given the high ABV...should definately be consumed cool, not cold

the first beer sampled from my first BA Anny bomb...courtesy of BeerBeing (1,306 characters)

Photo of Tyrawlings
3.9/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Hazy dark amber with gold hues around the outer edges of the glass. Off white head pours one finger thick and rapidly dissolves into a micro bubble ring around the edges of the glass. A slight lacing shows it's presence.

S: Floral hops. Citrus fruit. Biscut and malts. Alcohol.

T: Extremely sweet floral and citrus hops with a nice hop bite that tingles the tongue. Tropical fruit and apple sweetness muscles over the malt wave. A quick fresh baked bread or yeasty taste is taken over by a warming alcohol.

M: Syupry and smooth. Minimal carbonation. Very dry and warming finish.

D: This beer definitly leans on the hop side. A tad too sweet for my taste but a fine brew none the less. The flavors seem to meld together alittle better as the beer warms. Recommended. (813 characters)

Photo of GimpyCane
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been wanting this brew for some time and found it in Cleveland. Boy this beer is excellent. Poured a clear amber hue with a 2 inch beige head that left a excellent amount of sticky lace on the glass. My lips were also smacking with a sticky and salty residue. Upon pouring, a blast of pine and grapefruit (chinook and cascade hops)hit my nose with a yeasty dough scent. Great caramel flavor beginning with a long grapefruit bitter aftertaste. Smooth, crisp with a medium body, soft cabonation somewhat syrupy and dry ending with a hint of alcohol made it perfect for a session. Overall, I could drink this brew all night. The aroma, taste, appearance and mouthfeel was a near perfect harmony. The bad thing is, I can not found it anywhere near me. Enjoy (758 characters)

Photo of MmmIPA
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very grapefruit color body with a ring around my wine glass.Sorta murky color.

Grapefruit hop smell and some floral hops.

Sweet,bitter hops but VERY bittering more so then sweet.The taste is very fruity.

Carbonation is very easy on this one and is very smooth for its type of beer.

I would have again for sure.I would love to have out of a tap for have Dry Hopped.But the hops are more then enough potent for me as of now. (426 characters)

Photo of Vancer
4.63/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Clear amber, but hard to see thru. This must be a thick as a brick brew. Massive pillow top of ivory goodness, the lace is sticking to the glass an 1/8 inch thick. Impressive.

A citrusly orange aroma swirls outa the Corsendork tulip (thanks Soloman420). And then, the sweet and sour floral sips really kicks in, this thing is covering all aspects of the tongue’s senses. The oil will leave a sticky sheen on the lips and gums – smack, smack, smack. Sharp and crisp as first, the oiliness does show up for a big finish. Oh, the 11% is no where to be found, it musta been a typo on the bottle.

Great, great brew that I’ve had the good fortune to sample as a result of <winning> super bowl o beer 2007 – and ol Mark, the TheManiacalOne, was kind enough to pay with. (778 characters)

Photo of ZimZamZoom
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice clear copper color with a white head that stayed put.

Aroma is a blend of sweet malt and big citrusy hops. Heavy grapefruit.

Taste is malty up front, then fading to a bitter hop and alcohol finish that warms you right up. This does not hide its 11% very well but that's OK with me.

This Imperial IPA has a nice mouthfeel, not too carbonated and fairly light bodied for its strength. One of the few beers in this style that my wife finds palatable and that's saying something. Compare to Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA which she will never touch again. (564 characters)

Photo of ggaughan
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Drafting Room Best of 2006 night. Beer poured a red, amber color with a fairly thick white head. The aroma provides a good piney and citrus fragrence that is pleasing to the nose. The taste is similar with a nice big hop explosion on your taste buds, citrus and pine. There is a touch of malt on the backend and some real notes of the high abv. Medium body and a nice mouthfeel round out this beer so well. (421 characters)

Photo of Kendo
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bomber into a large Duvel tulip. The results: a clear coppery orange (more on the coppery side) with a 1.5-finger slightly off-white head that settles at a decent pace, leaving a pillowy film that is refortified by the bubbles that continue to rise -- slowly -- from the etched Duvel "D" in the center of the glass. The head ends up leaving some clumps of lacing at the top of the glass.

S: Immediately after popping the cap I detected grapefruit and bread dough. After the pour that doughy scent subsides and it's all about the citrusy, grapefruity hops. There's something pleasant that I can't quite put my finger on as well, but surprisingly the nose isn't all that powerful. The alcohol shows up in the scent as it warms -- frankly, given the 11% I was surprised it wasn't more evident sooner.

T: Mmmmm -- candy. Juicy Fruit gum, candied oranges and tropical fruits -- grapefruit, oranges and even mango. Noticeable bready malt early in the sip, but that is quickly smacked down by the fruity hops. Those sweet hops flavors are then smacked down by a dry, bitter twang that's not minerally or metallic at all (as you sometimes find with the finishing, bittering hops). That bitter taste really lingers, slowly coating the mouth with water-sucking dry bitterness, and yet there's still a sweet, fruity hop flavor somewhere underneath it all. Alcohol is immediately noticeable, not in the mouth but halfway down the esophagus. It does become evident in the taste as it warms, as does a pine or maybe sprucey hop taste that I didn't pick up at first. Nice balance and a lot going on. Very tasty.

M: Medium to full-bodied; perhaps a little closer to medium than expected given the stats on this one, and definitely lighter in heft than many of the DIPAs I've had. Decent level of carbonation, but overall pretty creamy -- even more so as it warms.

D: Very good. A hop bomb no doubt, but in a good way -- the dry bittering finish really seems to encourage that next sip, and the 11% ABV is very well masked in the taste.

Notes: a very enjoyable brew. I was tempted to give it a 5 in mouthfeel, but it wasn't quite silky smooth enough to warrant a perfect score. But it was darned close. Considered giving it a 5 in taste too, but I think it falls a little short of perfection there too, as those dry bittering hops take center stage at the end, where I think a little more balance would've been better. But I'm nitpicking -- all in all a very tasty, well-constructed DIPA. This one will please hop-heads, no doubt, but to this palate it wasn't just an over-the-top hop assault. Rather, the blend of hops used creates a nice drinking sensation, with different flavors at different stages of the sip and at different temperatures. Very much recommended.

Notes, May 17, 2008: Originally bought 2 bottles of this back in early 2007 (I think). Had #2 last night and it was still tasty. As expected, it had mellowed a bit and was more like a barleywine. But the hops were still there and if anything it was a bit smoother all around -- not much evident heat from the alcohol, and a nice balance between hops and malt sweetness, with the malt more dominant. So IMHO, this beer can be cellared, at least for a year to a year and a half. . . . (3,256 characters)

Photo of WeisGuy
4.32/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to BeerBeing for giving me the chance to try this great ale.

a - pours a reddish amber with a two-finger white head, retention around the edges, good lacing, fairly clear

s - big pine and citrusy hops dominate, malt presence, alcohol is prominent as well

t - sweet citrusy and piney hops explode in the mouth, subdued malt backbone, but it's there, quite resinous, alcohol tinges on the end with a long bitter finish

m - medium-bodied, moderate carbonation, fairly dry finish

d - for an 11% brew, quite drinkable, goes down very easily, but the combination of intense bitterness and alcohol probably limit overall drinkability

Great DIPA overall. Will definitely seek out another bottle in the future. (726 characters)

Photo of LvilleIPA
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this as a sample from a saleswoman - gotta make sure I thank her.

A - Very nice orance with a rocky white head that leaves excellent lacing as it slides down. Looks pretty much perfect.

S - Citrus. Tons of citrus. Tons of hops, and I mean tons of that good traditional hop smell.

T - Hoppy as hell, yet it's not too too much. It's fairly well balanced, I think. You can't miss the hops, but it's a good full bodied brew. One of the better doubles I've ever had, that's for damn sure. I'm not even sure what else I can say, there's just so much going on it's hard to explain.

M - Full bodied, goes down alot easier than an 11%'er should. Leaves the mouth semi-dry, but there's lot of citrus and fruit in there. For as hoppy as it is, I'm suprised it didn't dry me out completely.

D - It is 11%, but during this review I drank a decent amount of this. I'm giving it a 4 right now, but I don't know if i could take on much more.

Find it, buy it, drink it. Actually, buy a few. I'm really not sure if this is "limited" or around all the time. Hopefully this is part of their usual lineup, it's damn good. (1,124 characters)

Photo of Fish113d
3.62/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass at 43 degrees (F), it pours a classic amber color with a finger-thick, decently dense, spongy, clingy (on the glass) head that is eggshell in color. The nose is quite pleasant and not too bold, but still enough hops. For 11%, not much alcohol hits my nose, but the hoppiness is clean and floral, and not overly big. Some slight sugary sweetness also hits my nose, but the subtle hops take over the aroma of this one. The sip reveals a quite sweet shot up front of some rock candy, with a biscuity flavor coming through that reminds me of mom's chicken and dumplings (YUM!!). The hope end up taking over with bitterness, along with a healthy dose of alcohol that comes and dries it out almost completely, leaving almost a bourbon aftertaste (feeling also). Carbonation is mild on the sides of my tongue and the bitterness makes me feel like I'm eating hops, and the alcohol makes this very dry. Overall, one bottle will do for me I think. I'm not a true hophead, but I enjoy hoppy beers, and this one gets kinda messy in my opinion. Maybe letting it age a bit would help. (1,114 characters)

Photo of BeerTruth
4.07/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Wow, bitter...but I love it. This color is a faded orange with a nice foamy head. It was a bit grainy which fits well with the "Unearthly" character. It reminds me a bit of Ithaca's Flower Power. Quite drinkable for a DIPA, if you're someone who enjoys your hops. I would definitely avoid this beer if you dislike beer with "bite". But it surely has character, and on tap is absolutely amazing (Blue Tusk). (406 characters)

Photo of Burt
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass from a bottle.

Appearance; amber with a nice head and thick lacing

Smell; hops, hops and more hops, strong pine and citrus

Taste; big hop kick, pine then citrus, a little sweet then the bitterness kicks in wow.

Mouth feel; thick and syrupy

Drink ability; can only have one at a sitting

This was a hop monster of a beer, blown away by this one. Big taste throughout. Recommend this one to only seasoned, big time, over the top hop monster heads. (486 characters)

Photo of klewis
3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

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. (435 characters)

Photo of Imstillthegman
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Brewfan for this bomber.

Crystal clear copper with a nice white head that is leaving nice waves of lacing down my glass.

Spicy citrus hops with a little bit pine as well. Smells strong and zesty. Slightest hint of caramel malts fight for recognition...but they should just give up.

This thing is a hop bomb. I believe them when they say 153 IBUs. Sure, most people may not be able to detect that high a level of IBUs, but I know I am experiencing most of that. Zesty citrus and pine rip the palate to shreds and it's worth every minute of it. I don't notice any malts even thought I know they are there. Yummmy.

Full body DIPA with a good amount of carbonation. 11% abv and you don't even notice it. Well, until after you finish the whole bottle anyway. Dry? Yup. Bitter? Absolutely. Should you run out and get some? You bet. Damn fine brew. Thanks, Jim. I gotta go get some more of this one. (914 characters)

Photo of aforbes10
3.61/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

THis is my first Southern Tier....picked up a bottle at Capone's outside of Philly. Pours light brown, muddy clay color. almost no head. looks strong with sticky lacing. Not a terribly odiforous beer really. Hops are obvious on the nose, but they are drenched in boozy sweet malt odor. Oily hop and alcohol flavor. hops are the defining flavor and there is a good amount of bitterness but not a ton. I wouldn't call it a complex beer, but it definitely qualifies as a double IPA so it lives up to that. Not exactly "unearthly" though. I'd have another of these but it's not my favorite. (586 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Certainly a tremendous beer. It offers an extremely bold, yet delicate balance of intense malt sweetness and hop intenisy and flavor. The dryness of the hops, combined with the pronounced alcohols leaves a very spicy and dry sensation immediately. The flavors, though rich with caramels and barley, are thinned by the alcohols and citrus hops. The hops deliver strong citrus, pine, and earthy flavors of higher proportions. Along with flavor, the hops give a serious bitterness without the soapy, metalic flavors expected in big ipa's. The feel is full and rich, but I stop shy of saying 'thick or heavy'. Finishes with a focus on the dry, spicy hops with back-up tones of carmel malts and smooth fermented barley. Well balanced and strong flavored. Not for the timid, but pleasant after getting past the bitter shock. (818 characters)

Photo of Damian
4.54/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Drank from a 650 ml. bottle purchased at Liquor World, Somerville, MA

Poured a glowing, crimson-amber with a small, fizzy, off-white head. No lacing.

The aroma was hoppy initially, but milder than expected. As the beer warmed, the hoppiness became more intense. Zesty and citrusy cascade hops were apparent, along with candi sugar, ripe fruits and a touch of sweet caramel malts.

Like the nose, the taste was quite hoppy yet perfectly balanced. Some smooth, sweet, creamy maltiness up front before the hops took over. Potent (yet palatable) cascade hops displayed esters of ruby red grapefruit. On the back end, the beer seemed to be less hoppy and notes of brown and candi sugars were noticeable. The aftertaste was aggressively hoppy and left a piney, resiny flavor lingering in my mouth.

The mouthfeel was less carbonated than expected. Nevertheless, the beer turned to a rich, creamy froth once it hit my tongue.

At 11% ABV and 153 ibu's, I never would have expected the alcohol to be so mild, nor the beer to be so well balanced.

Overall, this is an incredibly flavorful and drinkable DIPA. Truly an outstanding example of the style. (1,144 characters)

Photo of jamie2dope
4.37/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I love Double IPA's and this one is no exception to the rule. I can't really say anything negative about the appearance on this beer. It has a good amber looking color, with a sticky white head that is just the right size. Smell is big on the sweet syrupy hops, but also has a bit of bitterness as well. With some warming, a nice grapefruit/tangerine aroma pulled through. Taste was sweet up front, with the oily hops in the back. Aftertaste was a mix of fruit and resin like hops if that makes sense. Mouthfeel is pretty big for a Double IPA....not huge, but certainly big. You can taste the alcohol on this one, but it is so damn easy to drink that it can be easy to forget. This is my buddy Ian's favorite IPA out there. I gotta say that he is right that this is a great example of the style. Definitely not my favorite, but really good in my book. I bet it would pair well with a whole list of cheeses. Cheers (913 characters)

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.45/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bright shiny copper, crystal clear body, with scattered carbonation streams. Topped by a thick slab of levle white froth. Good lacing.

The aroma hits the nose from a foot-and-a-half away, and holds up when sampled up close. Pine trees abound, and somewhere within lurks several fruit groves, including grapefruits and oranges.

Taste kicks off with a rich deep caramel/toffee with hints of dark chocolate foundation. Fruity juicy hops rise on the foundation with bits of orange, mango, tangerine, and grapefruit, and construct a skyscraper on the tongue, with is then cleaned with a sandblasting burst of a hop bite at the swallow. Gentle blanket of warming (but not biting) alcohol in the aftertaste.

Medium, maybe medium-plus mouthfeel. Not one to chug the bomber in one pull, but don't baby it either.

A very well composed IIPA, well integrated, tasty, drinkable. Highly recommended. Southern Tier is not second tier. (924 characters)

Photo of tempest
3.86/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I don't know where those 153 IBUs are hidding, but this is still a pretty awesome big beer. Overall the taste and aroma were surprisingly sweet. Smelled almost medicinal with a bit of spicey hops coming through. Candy-like malt flavor mixed with citrus hops made up a flavor that came off a little creamy, probably from the red wheat. Maybe the most drinkable DIPA I've had, no hint of the 11% as the beer warms. (412 characters)

Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,195 ratings.