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

Not Rated.
Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,088 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,088
Reviews: 565
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 12.78%
Wants: 55
Gots: 64 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-09-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,088 | Reviews: 565 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bheilman
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I like southern tier. This one makes me like the brewery even more. Unearthly is a good name for this one. It smells a bit oakey and has more of a barley wine flavor in that the hops doesn't bite so hard and has more of a malty smoothness. It might be the oak coming through. It definitely is evident in the smell. Caramelish aftertaste with citrus hints. It hits every part of the tongue. Doesn't have an overwhelming alcohol taste, but it is evident with a bit of a burn at the end. Probably wouldn't want to drink more than a bomber or so because of the strength. Delicious!

bheilman, Mar 26, 2009
Photo of spointon
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this one from a 22oz brown bomber bottle into my Fuller's pint glass.

A= This ale poured an extremely clear copper orange color, with a 1/2" bone colored head and very active carbonation release. The head quickly settled to a solid, creamy cap and left huge sheets of lacing down the glass.

S= The aromas of this beer were as you might expect. Some definite oak wood scent mingled with sweet biscuity malts and pine/citrus hops. It was surprising how little alcohol I could detect in the smell.

T= Lots of pale and caramel malty sweetness up front followed closely by a citrus/pine burst of hop resins. Then the wood kicks in with a dry oakiness, some vanilla, and a surprising spiciness. Though the oak stayed in the forefront and carried all the way through to the end, the hops and malts continued to wrestle in the background, bringing bursts of rich honey-like sweetness and solid base bitterness. The finish was extremely, full of a pleasant oakiness, and pretty dry.

MF= Just on the heavy side of medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and fairly crisp feel.

D= Wow. I am thrilled another brewer is discovering the beauty of oak that never had bourbon in it! This is how I have always imagined the IPAs back in the day would taste after making the long sea voyage from England to India. Very good balance of flavors, with the oak complimenting the hops very nicely. The ABV stays dangerously well hidden. A most outstanding ale that I will seek out again for sure.

spointon, Mar 25, 2009
Photo of mazdarx
4.88/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer was first brought to my attention at a party for which i was already a tad drunk. It made such an impression on me that i went out the next day and picked up a bomber of this fine ale so I could see if it was as good as it was the night before...and it was even better!!

A: Nice clean amber/honey tone with a 1/2 in head and beautiful lace.

S: This is one of my favorite smelling beers. The pine and oak mixed with the citrus from the hops was beautiful. For me, this is a perfect smell to accompany the taste to follow.

T: I love the way this beer tastes. I really enjoy the woody and piney tones that accompany the citrus on the pallet.

M: Nice dry sticky feeling leaving me wanting more.

D: MORE MORE MORE. I wish this wasn't a limited run beer. Is it?

I will probably run up and get another bottle to enjoy before they run out from my local spot.

mazdarx, Mar 23, 2009
Photo of Frosty80
4.7/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Color: sits a slightly burnt orange

Smell: lots of piny, citrus hops, but the oak and heavy sweetness lend great balance

Taste: great piny hops with rich sweetness to balance and the oak adds great character. bitter finish with touch of sweetness and a hint of yeast

Mouthfeel: low-full body. moderate carbonation

Notes: reminds me a lot of Hopslam. has a ton of hops but a solid, rich sweetness to give it balance and nice mouthfeel. love the oak character. awesome beer!

Frosty80, Mar 23, 2009
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.7/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright orange/amber color with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is full of floral hops and complimented nicely by fruity citrus and caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts with a very strong burst of grassy hops. Then sweet flavors of caramel and citrus come in along with the notable flavor effect of the oak aging which brings a little bit of a bite to it. The malt character is hearty and the high ABV is well-masked. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Very tasty and flavorful, goes down dangerously easily, not too filling, strong kick, excellent representation of style, while I think this is an excellent beer that is good to drink for an entire evening, the original Unearthly is one of the Top 5 beers that I've ever had and there wasn't much room for improvement. I don't think the oak aging made the beer better, but it did add a twist to it.

TheManiacalOne, Mar 23, 2009
Photo of hopdog
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle.

Poured a medium amberish color with a large sized off white head. Some lacing left on the glass. Aromas of pine, citrus, floral hops, some oaky/woodiness, caramle, and vanilla. Fresh plump oranges. Tastes of caramel, citrus, wood, pine, and some lighter earthiness. The oak was subtle. Light alcohol in the finish.

hopdog, Mar 23, 2009
Photo of TurdFurgison
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from a Southern Tier bomber, $8.99 in Columbus. This bottle is my first from Southern Tier with an actual label (not printed like Stone or Rogue). This is a great improvement as the ink on Southern Tier bottles never adhered well, the letters were constantly coming off.

The beer is clear, copper colored, with a wet spit-like head that laces dry onto the glass. The aromas are really good, centennial hops & chinook, sweet and juicy citrus-like. No oak in the smell, at least to my nose, but I can taste it for sure. This doesn't really taste like unearthly to me, I think the oak changes this a lot. I may have never tried an oak-aged IPA before, usually oak aging is reserved for strong ales, barleywines, and stouts. In this case it might take away more than it adds (not that this isn't a good beer or a great experiment). I just found myself wishing more for Unearthly or Gemini.

TurdFurgison, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of morebeergood
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Roadhouse in Brookline. Served in an 8 oz stemmed glass. Sunset yellow gold color. Very thin looking though. No head, and no carbonation showing. Smelled like a nice combo of hops and oak. Taste was surprising in a good way. While I am not a huge fan of IPAs, this one was quite good. The oakiness really helped to tame the hop profile, which made the flavor quite smooth and enjoyable. Alcohol was a bit noticeable, but not too much. Tad on the thin side for a big IPA. But, I must say that I like the beer they came up with here. An unusual combo for me to enjoy, but I did.

morebeergood, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of homebrewhawk
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. bomber served in a Duvel Tulip. Poured a brilliant clear gold with two fingers of white head. Plenty of carbonation. Big piney, citrus hop aroma. The oak comes out in the aroma as it warms. Hop bitterness jumps right out at you. There is plenty of oak character as well, mostly woody vanilla type flavors. Lemony citrus from the hops. Very drying long hop finish. Alcohol is well hidden. There is some malt there, but this is mostly a hop-centric beer. A little on the pricey side at $12.95 for a bomber.

homebrewhawk, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of KBoudreau66
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz. bomber poured in to a snifter.

Pours a very carbonated light amber color with one finger of bubbly white head.

Nose is piney, earthy and citrusy, mostly grapefruit, but maybe a little bit of lemon in there. No hints of oak which is really disappointing.

The taste is a lot sweeter then I was expecting with a hint of vanilla. Piney and citrusy like I had smelled. Definitely strong grapefruit undertones. I was hoping that the oak aged flavor was just hiding from my nose, but it wasn't, there really isn't much of an oak flavor to this brew at all.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and a bit syrupy. It also carbonated and has a crisp finish.

I was expecting more out of this brew. It wasn't a bad one, but I'm disappointed that there was no oak aged flavor to speak of. This is a new beer by Southern Tier, and my hope is that it will be better the next time around.

KBoudreau66, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of Gavage
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a clear orange color with a 1" head that falls apart quickly. Some mild lacing develops.

Smell: some pine, grapefruit, vanilla, and earthiness comes through easily to the nose.

Taste: caramel, pine, grapefruit, golden apples, and a hearty bitterness is wrapped in a earthy woodiness. Some vanilla arrives late. Alcohol is warming.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp to start and a bit smoother late. Aftertaste is warrming and long.

Drinkability: smooth drinking beer here with a big flavor profile. The bomber bottle is enough in one session. Pick this interesting beer up if you see it.

Gavage, Mar 21, 2009
Photo of caminiti
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another outstanding ST product. I was a bit hesitant, since usually the Oak in a name turns me off, but thanks to the guy at Westmere Bev for recommending this.
Poured into my usual stolen pint glass while watching Siena beat Ohio state, a light copper color, you hardly notice the oak in the smell, its more a floral and hoppy nose. Other reviewers noted some vanilla, and I did not get that, but I understand the reference to cake batter. A very drinkable beer, even at 11%, highly recommended, but not until I go out and buy one or two more.
By the way, did I mention Siena beat Ohio State?

caminiti, Mar 21, 2009
Photo of drseamus
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice copper amber body with a decent white head. It stays slightly longer than on most oaked beers or DIPAs. I don't actually notice that much of the oak in the aroma or the flavor. There is a touch of vanilla but mostly this is good old Unearthly. As always, I wish it was a bit more on the citrusy side and less on the piney side. That said, it's still a good beer.

drseamus, Mar 21, 2009
Photo of SFLpunk
3.15/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz brown glass pry-top. No date.

Appearance: Pours a very clear, pale amber with yellow tones (looks like a light ale/darker lager). Thick sudsy white head that stays for a long while.

Nose: Hops - vanilla - hops - vanilla - hops - etc. It smells like my local homebrew supply store. Lots of white chocolate, lemon, white cake batter, a little musty note. Smells thick and sweet.

Palate: Immensely sweet up-front with vanilla and cake batter dominating the flavors. Some bitter orange/grapefruit sneak in towards the middle and the hops claw their way back and try to stop the beer from being sweet, but alas. Body is medium to light.

Notes: Can't really get behind this offering. The oak seems to only mute the hop flavors while adding some really unpleasantly sweet notes. I keep coming back to white cake batter, and that's not really a flavor I like in my IPA's. Maybe in a wheat beer, or an old ale, but it's off-putting here. Going to stick with the regular Un*Earthly for now.

SFLpunk, Mar 21, 2009
Photo of jim102864
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from its colorfully labeled bomber bottle into my Scheider and Son 2007 anniversary pilsner glass. Very hoppy herbal and floral nose. Copper color with a single finger head. Smooth very dipa-ish in its mildness at 11 per no less. Caramel flavor. A little bit of sweetness. Nice mouthfeel. Worth the price.

jim102864, Mar 20, 2009
Photo of WesWes
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a beautiful amber color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is awesome. It has a wonderful medley of hops and oak that really compliments one another. The vanilla character reacts well with the heavy malt bill. The taste is good. It has quite the complex array of flavors here. The malt and hops hit you up front with a nice bitter explosion. It goes down easy with some warmth and then the oak really finishes it off. It's powerful, almost to the point of extinguishing the hop finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine beer. The oak character is a nice touch, although the original is fine without it. These guys just keep putting out the good stuff. Cheers!

WesWes, Mar 19, 2009
Photo of DefenCorps
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's

OA Unearthly pours a deep orange with a solid white head with great retention and lacing. The head lasts until I drain my glass. On the nose, OAU is how a good, fresh, DIPA should be - pine sap, mild sweetness, and plenty of hops to go around. Some citrus, pleasant bitterness. Up front, though, the oak comes through, with some tannic astringency that seems rather out of place. On the palate, it's similar - lighter in body than out of the bottle, plenty of outrageous hops with some malty sweetness (not too much) that goes towards balancing this beer. Oak appears mid palate before a long, hoppy finish takes over.

At 11%, I can't see myself drinking this too often, but it was surprisingly enjoyable.

DefenCorps, Mar 19, 2009
Photo of Bighuge
4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nice glowing orange body. Small bubbly ivory white head. Lacing is spotty in both nature and quantity. Nice blend of IPA smells and oak on the nose. It's like spilling a bigass IPA onto a freshly cut oak 2X4, letting it soak in for a few minutes and then taking a whiff. Good stuff. First sip tells me this is damn good. DAMN good. Bold flavors is an understatement. I haven't had many (if any?) oak aged DIPAs. This is a marriage that works very well, at least in this sample. The hop attributes are greasy and thick and resiny. Hop oils come to mind and to a lesser degree, pine oils. The oak is subtle, but definitely distinguishable. It adds depth. Malt base seems biscuity in nature. The alcohol is hidden very nicely in the context of this beer. In looking at the big picture here, this one has been designed and constructed very well.

Bighuge, Mar 19, 2009
Photo of feloniousmonk
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear, amber/apricottish hue, lovley white head, if small. Poured into a Maredsous tulip glass.

Aroma: bittersweet, lightly malty, pine and fresh citrus fruit...ripe orange & tangerine, splash of pineapple.

Taste: here's where the oak comes in, from the first sip...Big, wet, & woody. Lean body, long, oaky finish. Blankets the hops a bit, smothers them, even, and lets the malt stand guard. The regular Unearthly is a bitch-slap of bitterness. Oak-aging masks the spanks of the hops, tenderly covers it, and all is smooth and mellow.
Alcohol shows eventually, as it does with all of these ST Imperials.

There's no mistaking the oak in this, but I wouldn't have recognized it as Unearthly. A uniquely beautiful ale.

feloniousmonk, Mar 18, 2009
Photo of Gtreid
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Big thanks to reginaldo for a great brew. Poured the bomber into an imperial pint glass.

A: Deep orangish, caramel color with one and a half fingers of off white head that retained well and left just tons of sticky lace.

A: Citrus explosion of orange, tangerine, mango, and papya. The citrus hops are huge, but the sweet malt gives the nose a great balance.

T: Great! Again citrus hops dominate, but you also get some honey and sugar cane. The balance is really quite outstanding for this style of brew.

M: The oak aging gives this a very smooth mouthfeel. It is medium to full bodied, with just the right amount of carbonation.

D: This will be my only jab on this one. The high ABV and the caramelly nature of the beer limit the drinkability. One of these was plenty, but that being said, still a supurb offering from Southern Tier. Skal.

Gtreid, Mar 17, 2009
Photo of tavernjef
4.6/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A solidly clear ambery golden hue of perfect tone with a puffy large and in charge slighty yellowed foam that lasts only briefly before setting its hold on top in a slight skim and lots of fluff left around the edge. Big and tiny blobby things and spots of lace are flung across the glass and stick well.

Aroma is straight up mango juice with a nice twist of paled orange, tangerine, and strawberry. Highly tropical and lofty with a fresh juicyness.

Taste is immaculately driven in a firm balance of tropical juiceyness and whiskey sweetness. Full on mango juice marked with touches mixed in of manderine orange, tangerine, and sweet red grape. The oaky balance is super nice to behold and is well balanced with slight vanilla-esk whiskey warmth and sweetness playing off the juicy mango stuff. Its got enough beeryness to its juicy character to give it an impeccable dominion of pleasure and warmth, like somekind of super spiked tropical drink only found in the far reaching foggy foothills of Costa Rica.

Feel is fairly beefy, smoothly warm, and bold with a firm stint of a heavier mediumish body. Long, healthy, and tropically set in warmth and tender, juicy, hoppy tone and balance the whole way through.

Insanely drinkable and wholesomely yummalishious with a tropically set tone and warmth thats sure to quickly make you weary and slurry with its very well hidden 11%! Another keeper by Southern Tier! Yum!

tavernjef, Mar 17, 2009
Photo of shroompod
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a small head , no lacing. Clear amber honey colored.

Aroma of citrusy hops and perhaps the wood aging lend an earthy appeal that can only be described as "weedy".

I get less puckering bitterness than I'd expect , a decent malt backbone keeps this honest.

Mouthfeel is thick , carbonation is good.

A very nice IIPA I'd drink any day.

shroompod, Mar 17, 2009
Photo of klewis
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a brilliant copper color with a small bubbly head. A light halo but no lacing.

S: Malty caramel aromas with a strong vanilla smell. Isn't this missing something?

T: Strong toffee and molasses characteristics with prominent vanilla and oak tones. Sweet with a touch of bitterness in the back. Umm....?

M: Full-bodied and super sticky with light-moderate carbonation.

D: Did someone forget the hops? Not what I expected, but not bad. Not great either as the sweetness is getting a bit cloying.

klewis, Mar 17, 2009
Photo of DavoleBomb
2.8/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bomber poured into a tulip.

4.5 A: Ultra clear medium orange color. Two fingers of frothy head with excellent retention and good lacing.

3.0 S: Woodiness sticks out, but is a little weird. Kinda like pinesol with a lemony tinge. Floral hops supplement.

2.5 T: Strange woody flavor sticks around into the flavor. Lemony wood flavor, like pine-Sol. Plenty of hop flavor and even more maltiness.

3.5 M: Mouthfeel average overall. Good creaminess, carbonation, etc...

2.5 D: I like the original better. The oak aging adds a flavor I don't like. (But I do like wood aging.)

DavoleBomb, Mar 17, 2009
Photo of emerge077
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Unearthly is a great IPA, and i've enjoyed the few oaked IPAs i've had in the past...

This pours a bright jeweled amber, with a short foam cap. Lacing is pretty good, and it retains a slightly broken skim on the surface.

Amazing nose...melon, cantaloupe, rhubarb, ripe banana sweetness, orange zest, skunky hops, buttery oak. Like a wooden barrel full of some ungodly melange of turbo-charged fruit cocktail. Not in the alcoholic sense, more just in it's unique pungency. You can get lost in it easily, which is no small feat.

More cantaloupe and ripe banana in the flavor, some light bitterness, but with the buttery sweet finish, it feels more like an English strong ale or something. Leafy hops in the aftertaste, sort of steamrolled by the sugar and oak. Mildly drying, oak is noticeable in the finish. Low carbonation, sort of syrupy. A sipper for sure, and a really interesting experiment that could use a tiny bit of tweaking.

emerge077, Mar 17, 2009
Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,088 ratings.