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Allagash Hugh Malone - Allagash Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Allagash Hugh MaloneAllagash Hugh Malone

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

549 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 549
Reviews: 253
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 10.38%
Wants: 23
Gots: 32 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Hugh Malone begins with a grain bill featuring a blend of Maine grown barley, imported Pilsner, and raw wheat malt. At the beginning of run off, we add a portion of hops to the sweet wort in the kettle; a technique known as "first wort hopping". As the boil begins, a generous amount of Chinook hops are added for bittering. Later, in the whirlpool, the beer is hopped with a blend of Centennial and Amarillo, for aroma. This same blend is used, post fermentation, to lend additional hop character to the finished beer. The result is a complex brew with a malty palate, intense hop aromas, pronounced bitterness and a pleasantly dry finish.

(Beer added by: ppoitras on 04-27-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 549 | Reviews: 253 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TexIndy
TexIndy

Texas

4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml corked and caged bottle into a pint glass. No dating info . Opened with a loud pop. Good thing I had a tight grasp on the cork because it shot out of there. Label even has warning about it. Was a clear bronze color with a massive carb geyser coming from the bottom. Good lacing. Had a massive bubbly white head that very slowly settled to a thick foam that was constantly fed by the geyser.

The aroma was excellent. Sweet malt base, bready with lots of citric hops as well. Really enjoyed the sweet making it's way to the front. Too many of the American IPA's are dominated by the hops and could use a little more balance like this one has to it. The taste was also excellent. Again, great sweet malt base that was pretty well balanced by the hops. Towards the end the sweetness did start to take over which hurt the last third of the glass. Starts out smooth with the malt and then the hops kick in and finishes with a bit of bitter. This is my first Belgian IPA but if the rest are like this one then this will be a top style for me. Mouthfeel was good but a bit too much carbonation.

Overall, an outstanding beer that I highly recommend. Another homerun from Allagash. If avail here (brought this back from Indy) this would be in main rotation.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2009 02:47:48 | More by TexIndy
Photo of TheMistler
TheMistler

District of Columbia

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml into a Petrus tulip, this here beer had a pleasant copper / orange color with a white creamy head. A good amount, displaying nice retention. Thick ring with a nice cap, leaving behind good lacing.

Sweet nose, with restrained but noticeable hoppiness. Biscuit and caramel malts, brown sugar. Sweet citrus. Slight pine. A hint of lemon zest citrus.

As with the nose, so with the taste. Actually, having the chance to sit with the beer for while (thanks, large format!), I have noticed that hops take more and more of focus as the beer warms more than a few degrees. Nonetheless, while there is definite hoppiness, malt comes to the fore first and is noticeable throughout. Caramel. Grains. There is a slight yeast quality, as well. For hops, I detected some lemon rind. Grassiness starts building right as the beer hits your tongue and continues building throughout and reaches its zenith towards the end, bequeathing a slightly dry and piney finish, a bit of a pickled sensation, though not taste.

Crisp, with a pretty good and fitting amount of carbonation. Creamy feel and CO2 nicely compete for attention.

A less hoppy but nonetheless quite enjoyable take on the style.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2009 03:39:46 | More by TheMistler
Photo of JohnQVegas
JohnQVegas

Tennessee

4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draught.

Pours a hazy orange-gold, with a small off-white head and a wall of lacing.

Nose is citrusy, a little yeast also. Not a big nose.

Taste starts off with a citrusy hops and some lightly sweet, biscuity malt, just a bit toasty, made sharper by the firm carbonation, and a bit of a dry. Spicy yeast note. Hops turn more resiny around mid-palate, and then the yeast takes over with a big dryness - it's like the taste is just sucked into a wall of off-dryness, from which emerges a nice, lingering pine bitterness to complement the yeast. Dryness lets up just a bit after awhile, letting the flavor of the yeast peek through carrying just a bit of the biscuity malt.

Mouthfeel is firmly carbonated, medium bodied, just a bit oily. I would drink this beer again, for sure.

Serving type: on-tap

02-05-2009 14:00:33 | More by JohnQVegas
Photo of kasper
kasper

New York

3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a murky brown, the color of cider with yellow/amber highlights; Fluffy orange-tinted off-white head about a finger and a half tall. Bits of wet lacing stick on glass.

S: Aromas of sour green apples, candi sugar, hint of spice, citrus hops.

T: Apple cider malts, carmel, tad of sourness, and various hop flavors all intertwined. Noticeable traces of Apple, belgian yeast, lemon, hard candy; Finish starts out somewhat bitter and sweet, but progressively grows more intense and dry. Lots of hops in there.

M: Medium body, mildly sticky, velvety carbonation, yield smooth sips.

D: Bought this by accident. Pretty much knew what to expect. This bitch is expensive at $18. It's a decent beer -- a good Belgian IPA. I'm not a big fan of the style, which I don't consider very drinkable. But was able to slowly begin to enjoy this brew for what it is, and it's not bad.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2009 03:08:15 | More by kasper
Photo of saintwarrick
saintwarrick

South Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a dark rusty red with a sizeable off-white head that goes down quickly and rings the glass. Aroma is at first very malty, with some citrus and Belgian phenols also making themselves known. Hoppiness is apparent as the brew has a citrusy bite to it, blending with usual Belgian-sugar and yeast taste with a tangerine like sweetness kicking in at the end.

Definitely a hopped-up Belgian brew, but I'll need to try a few others to see if the resemblance to an IPA is warranted.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2009 07:00:00 | More by saintwarrick
Photo of mj001jk
mj001jk

California

4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy amber/orange with plenty of carbonation and a thick creamy head that persists for at least 30 mins in the glass.

Nose is refined and balanced with levels of complexity. It has a slight tangerine citrus component with green grass, pine, biscuit and toffee, which adds a little sweetness. It smells fresh and inviting but not spritzy in any way, I really like the nose.

Medium bodied, great vivacity and creamy richness envelop the palate with flavors of citrus, golden malts and a nice smooth bittering with some spice at the end. Alcohol comes through just a tad strong after the beer warms up a bit, but the flavors are awesome and very well balanced. This is one of my favorite styles of beer, a bastard hybrid between an American Northwest IPA and a Belgian golden ale and this one hits a home run.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2009 05:07:02 | More by mj001jk
Photo of dqderrick
dqderrick

California

3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice 1/2" cream colored white head after pour. Beer was orange-brown in color. Smells of hop bitter... strong bitter. Maltiness scent extremely light but I'm pretty sure I picked it up.

This tasted very bitter from the hops. It definitely reminded me of an IPA/DIPA but had another flavor that I'm not used to picking up from those styles. Was it a maltiness... or Alagash's unique yeast strain? I don't know much about this particular beer beyond the minimal info on the label and my tasting experience. I definitely pick up a unique malt and yeast flavor. But do I like it? Not at first.

After 1/2 glass, I began to enjoy the unique flavor. Personally, I've never tasted anything quite like this which made it a great experience. This is coming from someone that hasn't found an Allagash brew that I'd buy again. But, I'm pretty sure I've only tasted a few. Also, if someone had an Allagash, I'd definitely want to get a taste.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2009 04:49:29 | More by dqderrick
Photo of Grabbin2nd
Grabbin2nd

California

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From Notes: 9/8/08 750ml Caged and corked bottle 8.5% abv.

Vigorous Pour is a great looking 2 finger cake of foam
I get a very well balanced beer, Belgian throughout yet most intense at the start with the hops! The hoppy finish is necessary and not overwhelming. Great head retention. Could finish fatter. Is a little thin. Real nice flavor on the tongue as the beer warms.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2009 03:24:14 | More by Grabbin2nd
Photo of Durge
Durge

Connecticut

3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the bomber at room temperature into a pint glass, this one gives you a cloudy copper brown color with a solid but thin off-white head and excellent lacing. I smell easter ham here with clove and champagne grape. The first taste brings more of that champagne feel and flavor. Plenty of mellow clove and some malt. Belgianesque in taste and feel but relatively mellow and easy drinking. I like it as a nice change up, refreshing and kind of unique.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2009 06:05:11 | More by Durge
Photo of grub
grub

Ontario (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, corked and caged. sampled dec 31/08.

pours deep reddish amber with a huge cap of yellow foam on top. the head drops slowly and leaves spotty lace behind.

aroma is good. solid malty base - multi-grain bread, biscuit, bit of cracker. caramel. light alcohol. distinctive fresh belgian character. light fruit. floral hops.

taste is good. nice caramel and malty base. multi-grain bread, cracker, bit of biscuit. light warming alcohol. definitely in american ipa/barleywine territory so far. pleasant fruity and yeasty character. fairly low bitterness level, much lower than i'd expect for a belgian ipa. slightly floral. touch of pine.

mouthfeel is ok. high carbonation. medium-light body.

drinkability is fairly good. the high carbonation does detract slightly. this is a confusing brew - it's labeled here as a belgian ipa, but the description on the brewery's website makes it sound more like an english/american ipa hybrid and the taste has it borrowing from all three ipa types. it leans mostly to the american side, with higher (still too high) belgian carbonation and a bit of yeasty twang, yet not enough hops to satisfy any of the three. still, if you ignore the label it remains a tasty and enjoyable brew, especially once it's had time to breathe and allow the carbonation to settle.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2008 23:06:19 | More by grub
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Belgian style bomber, caged and corked, no bargain @ $18.99(!), @ Decicco Market in Ardsley, NY. No freshness indication dating system employed. Pours typical orangy amber, medium tan nice looking frothy head, shows better then moderate retention than dissolves to a layer of fine film and leaves some thick sheeting and splotchy lacing. Dull nose of some maple malt notes, light soap and resiny hop oils. Tasty creation, combing two sexy styles, IPA and Belgian ale. This one simply does not meet the mark of the heavy weights of the style. (which are all available for quite a bit less$ BTW) Here, the hops are muted, I found the hops to be limited to an underlying layer of resinous bitterness. Lacking of the heady floral bouquet and citric hop bite of Houblon Chouffe for example. Decent beer, for sure, but overpriced.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2008 00:39:34 | More by Billolick
Photo of yossarian14
yossarian14

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the best looking pours I've seen. Big white fluffy cloud of never-ending head. Its a slightly hazy bright amber. Maybe a little chill haze. It smells like a west coast IPA with the Belgian yeast spicy notes. Smells like a Belgian IPA should.

I am a little disappointed because the marks go down from there, but I still can't complain, because I love this beer. I think the hops and the yeast aren't blending as smoothly as they should. The taste is hoppy, piney a little bit grapefruit pith and ends spicy, yeasty. The mouthfeel is full, creamy. I love the style. The Belgian IPA, traditionalists be damned, is quickly becoming a favorite. Hugh Malone doesn't stand out in a crowd, of BelgIPAs. But what are you gonna do, half-assed breweries aren't attempting this. World-class breweries are. Try Piraat first, if your new to this style, and go from there.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2008 01:20:31 | More by yossarian14
Photo of tadowdaddy
tadowdaddy

Michigan

4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Cloudy golden color with an orange tint and huge eggshell head that had great retention. Lacing on the sides of the glass was superb.

S- Very floraly aroma. Also a bit of caramel maltiness in the backend of the smell.

T- VERY well balanced. Initial sweet malt taste followed by a burst of fresh earthy hops. Got a bit of a citrus and a bit of a pine taste from the hops.

M- Creamy and oily. Leaves a nice coating on the tongue.

D- VERY! No taste of alcohol and the beer goes down as smooth as they come.

Got this in a trade as an extra! Thank you for the wonderful beer Miamifan1354. Would definitely purchase this beer if it were available in Michigan.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2008 03:31:18 | More by tadowdaddy
Photo of Bierman9
Bierman9

New Hampshire

3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A gift for my 50th from "Old Bro" Artied2... Poured from a caged and corked 750ml bottle, the cork easily giving up the ghost with a resounding "pop". Label shows some old Maine codger, and a partial chemical-schematic of "humulone", C21-H30-O5.

Filled my Rapscallion chalice with Hugh, the liquid being a touch cloudy and apricot-golden in color. Carbo was plentiful and steady within, and the head was a marshamallow-white dollop of mousse-like foam. The topping started at about 2.54cm before ebbing to a steady 1/4", leaving a lovely trail of lacing inside the glass. The aroma consists of some fruity notes, akin to pear and green apple, plus some hop grassiness. Almost Tripel-like. The feel on the tongue is light and airy, with a mild prickliness very similar to Bavarian Hefeweizens. The body is also on the lighter side of medium.

The taste hits you with light sweetness, with some subtle crackery maltiness. Fruit action follows, with a bit more pear and apple, along with a little lemon rind. Hoppiness has a smidge of spiciness, plus the grassiness noted earlier in the aroma. The finish is chalkily dry, with some memories of the fruitiness clinging to the palate. At 8.50% abv, it was rather weel-hidden, to me. I am just now getting to feel it as my chalice nears empty. An interesting concoction from Allagash.

My thnx go out once again to Artied2 for this "good luck in the over-the-hill club" gift. And, I am doubly-appreciative, as I know this bier is obscenely over-priced (I'd not personally shell out my own coin for this... anyhow...)... ;-)

Prosit!!

3.95
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | drink: 4

1096

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2008 22:49:04 | More by Bierman9
Photo of bruachan
bruachan

District of Columbia

4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

nice foam and lacing. good color, too: amber with nice orange highlights

brown sugar aroma with orange blossom honey and dates makes for a sweet richness that isn't over the top (and sports a tiny wheat cracker element). the hop aroma is all NW, which took me by surprise. it allows the belgian yeast characteristics to shine through and really makes for a nice aromatic experience

the sweetness is less pervasive when tasted and leaves more room for hops: mostly simcoe with a warrior clue. some of the heat blazes through and the malts do provide a slightly grainy character. for some reason i am having trouble identifying the malt's flavor responsibilities: a hint of bread, but really minimal. some of the sugariness, too, but again minimal

mouthfeel is appropriate. lively when it's just out of the bottle and it moves quick on the tongue. nice brew...can't decide if warrior and simcoe hops disqualify it from being a belgian ipa, but i guess the truth is that i don't really care

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2008 00:22:38 | More by bruachan
Photo of magictrokini
magictrokini

California

3.3/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours cloudy gold with a humongous white head. Rocky, nice lacing. Aroma advertises a great beer. Hoppy, peppery, some pine, and a fragrant, sweet Belgian yeastiness. Flavor does not carry through. Soapy, unbalanced hops with that medicinal herbalness (perfect call swoopjones). The crystal malt goes very well with the yeast, however. Don't get me wrong, the flavor was good, just not great. Probably could have been better without the dry-hopping.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2008 19:41:52 | More by magictrokini
Photo of PittBeerGirl
PittBeerGirl

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle poured into my Chimay chalice.

A- Body is a translucent golden yellow. Pours with a very foamy, 2 finger white head that eventually subsides to 1 finger and leaves plenty of lacing behind in the glass. Cloudiness is thick and somewhat dynamic, with some foggier spots than others. Bubbles constantly rising to the top.

S- A sugary sweetness comes through first in the nose followed by a ton of floral hops, a hint of phenols, and a bit of bready yeast.

T- A big floral hop flavor comes through with a substantial, but well hidden background, of yeast and sweetness. The finish is somewhat bitter with floral hop bitterness, a grapefruity resin, and a hint of alcohol, but is very dry. A faint resiny bitterness lingers along with the slightest alcohol warmth.

M- Medium to high tingling carbonation and a bone dry light body. Body consistency is a balance between alcohol and yeast.

D- This is a very good, very complex Belgian IPA. Due to its $ I probably won't trade for it again but will have it again if I see it in stores. Another great brew by Allagash that I was impressed with.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2008 19:49:34 | More by PittBeerGirl
Photo of Reagan1984
Reagan1984

Massachusetts

3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A really nice looking beer. Enjoyed this one from a tulip glass. It had a huge/creamy/well structured head that showed some impressive retention. It did fade away eventually and did leave little lacing behind. I was careful not to disturb the sediment and yet the beer itself was fairly cloudy. A honey/Amber color that was too hazy to see any carbonation that may have existed. A decent looking beer.

Yeasty aroma with some spice notes. The tiniest touch floral as well.

Flavor was actually very nice. And I thought it showed some excellent balance. Some nice malt notes up front with a doughy to biscuity flavor, them some sweetness with a touch of honey. Finally the hops take over and present more of a pine flavor. In the background you can sense and taste the yeast as well. Some fruitiness, but not a great deal.

Mouth feel was a bit lighter in body than I had thought. A touch dry at the finish.

Really nice drinkability. I wish I had another bottle to pop open.

Good one. I again show myself that I love Belgian Ipa's!!

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2008 20:06:56 | More by Reagan1984
Photo of tmoneyba
tmoneyba

Ohio

3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from River's Bend.

Poured a hazy amber color with an average fizzy off-white head that was mostly lasting with good lacing. Moderate tart citrus and yeast aroma. Medium body with a sticky texture and thin particles. Medium balanced citrus flavor with a medium bittersweet finish of moderate duration.

Good, not great.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2008 13:49:22 | More by tmoneyba
Photo of hopdog
hopdog

Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle.

***Thankfully I had the foresight to open this one up over the bathtub. Mr. Malone gushed everywhere.***

Poured a medium amber color with a large sized off white head. Aromas of yeast, peppery spiciness, caramel, and lightly fruity. Tastes of yeast, fruity, and lightly spicy. OK, but not worth the $15 I paid.

Notes from 1/15/08

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2008 19:19:41 | More by hopdog
Photo of dnichols
dnichols

Washington

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured a 750 ml capped and caged bottle into a large tulip glass.

A: It poured an amber tinged dusty orange body with a massive two finger off-white head. The head receded slowly leaving a thin layer over the liquid and supporting a layered lacing that trailed the liquid down the side of the glass.

S: It had a floral and spicy profile that rose above a strong base of sweet malts and candi sugar.

T: There was athick and creamy sweet malt and light Belgium candi base that coated the front of the tongue. Just as the sweetness settled in there was a wave of bittering hops that included piny and citrusy hops. It hid the alcohol well.

M: It was medium to heavy bodied with a creamy smooth body and a biting, warm and clean finish. Very modest carbonation.

D: This is a nice balance between an American IPA and a Belgium Tripel. Solid candidate for a session beer for ale lovers.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2008 13:11:41 | More by dnichols
Photo of ommegangpbr
ommegangpbr

New York

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The notion of a Belgian IPA is a happy little combination of seductive styles.
The use of hops in this guy works very, very well with typical Belgian pale ale characteristics. The hops bite and the Belgian smooth is very appealing. Allagash does a very good job of walking the fine line of merging styles.
This resembles an IPA more than it does a Belgian pale ale as hops are on the aggressive side but the finish is more... yeasty and subtle.
One particularly noteworthy point is that this is pretty easy to guzzle for something that is 8.5% strong.
Allagash hasn't always delivered for me in the past but this guy is something I would like to revisit.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2008 04:30:44 | More by ommegangpbr
Photo of lpayette
lpayette

Vermont

4.53/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another one of those, "I can't believe I haven't reviewed this yet" beers. Time to finally roll up the sleeves for a bit and write a review. This particular bottle is probably around 6-8 months old.

Appearance- Is there any Allagash beer that isn't absolutely beautiful? You've got to love pouring their bottle conditioned beers because it seems you can make the head do whatever you want it to. Pour it hard or soft, you're still going to end up with lacing all over the glass.

Smell- Citrusy hops with a nice spice melody. Black pepper in the deep whiffs.

Taste and Mouthfeel- Excellent balance between hops, malt, and spices. Really quite exceptional the more I make my tastebuds think about it. Surprisingly hoppy for Allagash (citrusy), but certainly not overdone and less hoppy than any others I've had in this style. A hint of honey in the middle- just a hint. Lots of orange peel near the end, and a peppery and near-dry finish. Carbonation is subtle and just strong enough to make its way through the medium thickness of the body.

Drinkability/Conclusion- Well go figure, I finally figure out how much I love this beer on my LAST bottle. Looks like I'll be snagging up some more of this when I get a chance.

Allagash sets the bar high with their interpretation of this emerging style. Surprisingly, this is more 'Belgian' tasting than examples I've had from Belgium... but now that I think of it, maybe I shouldn't be surprised at all since Allagash is probably the best maker of Belgian beers outside of Belgium.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2008 02:28:07 | More by lpayette
Photo of nick76
nick76

Florida

3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma has lots of hops compared to most Belgians. It's also got malt, yeast, pepper, herbs, and spice. The appearance is amber with a foamy head. The flavor is like the aroma. The palate is smooth. Overall it's Pretty good. I am just not sold on Belgian IPA's for some reason.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2008 14:23:39 | More by nick76
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Blurry apricot topped by a massive crown of sandstone colored foam that looks authentic for the style. Allagash is one of the few American craft breweries that, more often than not, creates Belgianesque heads. This one is whipped creamy and is blanketing the glass with boatloads of sticky lace. Whatever else Hugh Malone is, it's a looker.

Simcoe hops was a fantastic choice. An undercurrent of Belgian yeastiness lends a warm spiciness akin to cardamom and clove. Although the nose easily qualifies as good, it isn't great. More power and complexity are needed before the big scores are brought into play.

This Belgian IPA is not one of Allagash's better efforts. There isn't enough barley for the hop load, there aren't enough yeast esters, and the alcohol is too prominent. Given Rob Tod's brewing skill, Hugh has to qualify as a big disappointment... whose flavor score is only salvaged by my hopheadedness.

The lack of complexity and the less than stellar mouthfeel keep the beer from soaring like it should. The flavor profile collapses shortly after contact and does not allow the drinker to patiently probe the various nooks and crannies that ought to be present. Part of the reason is less than expert carbonation. Bottle conditioning (often hit-or-miss) ends up a miss in this case.

A lot more pale malt and a little less crystal malt would have helped build a more delicious and more solid foundation. Although plenty of alpha acids are present, Simcoe hop flavor isn't as bold or as bright as it could be. Think white grapefruit pith, orange oil and spruce tips. Given the current price of hops, it's now obvious why this bottle was almost $20.

For want of a better mouthfeel, a beer was lost. Not quite, but it certainly does dampen one's enthusiasm when feel lets down flavor. While HM isn't flat in a literal sense, it isn't creamy or expansive in the least.

Hugh Malone is all about humulones. Ordinarily, that sort of focus would be right up my alley. However, a well-crafted Belgian IPA is much more than Belgian yeast and a huge hop load. The best versions (Urthel Hop-It, De Ranke XX Bitter and Houblon Chouffe Dobbelen IPA Tripel) have absolutely nothing to worry about.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2008 22:32:07 | More by BuckeyeNation
Allagash Hugh Malone from Allagash Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 549 ratings.