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Tower 20 Double IPA - Karl Strauss Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Tower 20 Double IPATower 20 Double IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

57 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 57
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 12.5%
Wants: 4
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Karl Strauss Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
The saying “less is more” doesn’t apply to West Coast IPA’s. Less is a glass half empty and Tower 20 is a full glass of unrivaled hop character – a Double IPA where more is more. In brewing this hoppy offering, we took the best of Tower 10 IPA and added more. An abundance of high-alpha Centennial hops give T20 its resinous pine-like bitterness, while Oregon-grown Crystals and Chinooks lend zesty grapefruit and tangerine hop flavors. Don’t hoard this hop bomb, drink it fresh and we’ll brew more.

100 IBU

(Beer added by: mactrail on 10-28-2011)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Tower 20 Double IPA Alström Bros
Ratings: 57 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.2/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 oz. bomber,

A: Pours a burnt orange with a small white head, good retention, limited lace.

S: Sweet malt with a lot of citrus, mango and lemon rind.

T: Malt heavy with some juicy hops. Grapefruit, lemon zest and a fair dose of mint. Hint of tropicality, some light pineapple is in there.

M: Medium to full-bodied. Sticky, oily, and resiny. Some crisp carbonation that gets a bit spritzy in the finish.

O: An old school style Double IPA where the malt is to the forefront. Reminds me of something out of the Pacific Northwest. A solid effort, but too overpriced for what it is.

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2012 04:03:38 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

3.2/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

3/8/2012

Bottle picked up at Karl Strauss Sorrento Valley for $9.50, which is probably 50% more than it will retail for, if history is any indication. I couldn't be happier with the situation. Snifter.

A: Very dark orange and completely transparent with a mountain of beige froth. The head lasts for a minute and yields scattered lacing.

S: Pronounced bread and sweet caramel blend with orange, grapefruit, and tangerine flesh aromatics. It reminds me of an IPA from the Northwest. Pine resin is evident. This is the definition of balance.

T: Very malty. Bready sweetness is balanced by soft orange and grapefruit notes. Caramel makes an appearance. This is not only excessively malty, but the hops are pretty dull as well. It's also a little too alcoholic in the late palate through the finish.

M: Medium body with moderate carbonation.

Overall: This is not a Tower 10 take on a Double IPA. It's much maltier than I expected. I was definitely hoping for a much drier beer and not a Northwest style Double IPA. This comes across as bland and uninspired with excessive use of Crystal malt. It's not terrible, but with the hoppy choices I have in San Diego a beer grasping for mediocrity is one I will not buy again.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2012 03:34:43 | More by HopHead84
Photo of GraduatedCashew
GraduatedCashew

California

3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

08-28-2013 16:26:48 | More by GraduatedCashew
Photo of tobelerone
tobelerone

Connecticut

3.9/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer a good deal more than the BA consensus, it seems. Perhaps I got a particularly fresh bottle (thanks ChefBergo for the extra), but this was a good, though certainly not great, DIPA. It looks great; lightly hazed burnished orange color; fluffy white head, good retention and lacing. Very much a citrus forward nose; lots of orange or tangerine, as well as lemon and grapefruit, with some sweet caramel maltiness blending in well.

The flavor is also quite citrusy; surprisingly so, with prominent tangerine notes as well as the aforementioned lemon and grapefruit. True there is a prominent malt character to this beer, one that’s not so much in keeping with the typical San Diego style, but it didn’t seem overbearing or outshine the hop character. Lightly sweet caramel flavor and middle-of-the-road bitterness. Finishes semi-dry. I could see how this one might lean towards the overly malty if it wasn’t very fresh but my bottle certainly didn’t have that problem. Booze is well-hidden

The body is medium-full and carbonation is just a touch under medium; there’s a little bit of creaminess and stickiness to the mouthfeel. Overall this felt pretty spot-on. Again, not a great one and won’t outshine the truly outstanding hoppy beers from the region but this wasn’t bad at all. We had this in a side-by-side with Drake’s Hopocalpyse and preferred this by a small margin, much to our surprise. Worth a shot.

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2012 03:40:46 | More by tobelerone
Photo of mhaugo
mhaugo

California

4/5  rDev +11.1%

12-17-2012 05:57:15 | More by mhaugo
Photo of srandycarter
srandycarter

California

3.6/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got very curious when I saw the Tower 20 come out.

A- Pretty copper, fair off white head, some cling.

S - Bandaids. Hops. Malt underneath it all.

T - Large malt caramel center, wrapped by hops.

M - Medium body, good carb, ok balance.

D - Nice offering. Def. sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2012 04:27:59 | More by srandycarter
Photo of jenray
jenray

Texas

3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

12-30-2013 01:12:56 | More by jenray
Photo of HalfFull
HalfFull

California

3.4/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into a globe glass. Pours goldenrod with a touch of orange haze and offers a half inch of whitish foam. Moderate retention and some artsy lace.

Aroma of malt and some resinous hops, giving way to a notable orange citrus underbelly. Bit of caramel and yeast. Fairly well integrated but not overly robust in the hops department, yet the ABV is well cloaked behind the somewhat malty delivery.

Flavor is more neutral with some pale malt and just a hint of caramel and with a spicy hop character. Bit of citrus spice on the finish and with a moderate lingering yet soft bitterness. Malt is obvious but not overdone but gets a bit rich over time.

Feel is slick and a bit oily with orange and a bit of caramel. Carbonation is lighter than the pour might suggest but firms up a bit with warming. Overall a decent brew that improves with warming and worh a visit.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2012 05:45:29 | More by HalfFull
Photo of vermilcj
vermilcj

Ohio

3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

11-29-2013 04:53:44 | More by vermilcj
Photo of djaeon
djaeon

California

3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

10-19-2013 03:31:07 | More by djaeon
Photo of hooliganlife
hooliganlife

Missouri

3.25/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pour was a a cloudy golden yellow with thick creamy and foamy head, about an inch or so.

very malty on nose with some light hops. not a lot of depth except for sweet malt.

flavor was similar, this was far more malt forward than hop forward. no idea what the date on this is. lots of sweet caramel and toffee, faint slight bitter citrus hops.

full body, mild bite, no trace of alcohol burn. pretty smooth.

overall, not what i want in a double IPA. it was not bad, but was not stand out.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2012 23:40:10 | More by hooliganlife
Photo of khargro2
khargro2

Georgia

3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

07-09-2014 01:49:44 | More by khargro2
Photo of beagle75
beagle75

Iowa

3.25/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy, light amber color with less than one finger of diminishing custard-tinted foam head. Light scattered lacing remains on the glass.

S: Rich caramel and toasted grain make this smell like a barleywine. Evidence of hops manifests as fairly dark mixed citrus fruit. Trace esters add to the fruit effect. No alcohol is detected.

T: Begins off-dry, with dense pale malt that is cakey and toasted. Hop aromatics are not only herbaceous and spicy, but also distinctly minty, in addition to some more typical dark citrus and pine. Flavors become shallower in the middle, more foliage and slight plastic; malt flees. The finish is only mildly bitter and much cleaner than expected, compared to the beginning. No alcohol is detected.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, changing from an alkaline coating at the front of the palate to an acidic burn in the back of the throat, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: This large and malty DIPA may have received a true doubling of the grain bill, going by taste and smell alone. Unfortunately that leaves it unbalanced away from the hop component, with little evidence of serious dry-hopping detected. Otherwise it seems to be assembled by-the-book, very predictable. It fails to eclipse Karl Strauss' long-running Big Barrel Fall seasonal DIPA, which remains the best of their high gravity beers.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2012 02:21:57 | More by beagle75
Photo of pin
pin

Australia

3/5  rDev -16.7%

06-13-2013 23:04:59 | More by pin
Photo of funkel81
funkel81

California

4/5  rDev +11.1%

01-07-2012 04:49:24 | More by funkel81
Photo of kristougher
kristougher

North Carolina

3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

11-04-2013 16:50:02 | More by kristougher
Photo of BucannonXC5
BucannonXC5

California

4.08/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22-oz. bomber into a pint glass. About two fingers of head. Color was caramel honey toffee. Brownish white lacing with some bubbles on the top. Wet, uneven and sporadic film on the sides.

Smelled lemon citrus hops up front. Also some lime piny notes in there. Sweet floral notes. Fairly malty, but still refreshing on the nose.

Very balanced taste, could hardly taste the alcohol. Lemon citrus hops really came through here. The maltiness seemed to balance the citrus hops out. So smooth.

Medium body. Average carbonation. Slight bitter, but smooth finish. Refreshing feeling.

Really liked this beer as I do with most of the ones from Karl Strauss. Smoot h and very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2012 04:59:36 | More by BucannonXC5
Photo of rawfish
rawfish

California

3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Careful pour nets a rocky two finger high head of off white foam. Retention is near infinite, got to the bottom of the glass and the head was still nearly half a finger. Leaves some sticky lacing on the glass.

Pretty even battle between malts and hops, a touch bready that moves towards sweet honey and blends seemlessly into tangerine, orange and pine resin. Centennial hops add earthy tones. Overwhelmingly orange citrus, earthy and sweet.

Crystal malt provides alot of heft in the malt bill along with sweet rolls, and honey. Hop profile is strong orange citrus and pine, not overly resinous, good bitter kick but the finish is quickly overwhelmed with some abrasive solvent alcohol. Dries well in the finish with some bitter pine and residual caramel sweeteners.

Medium bodied, adequate carbonation and very smooth going down. Loss of some points for alcohol rearing its head on the end of the drink and a rather stick sweet mouth coating.

Pretty decent beer, the parts are all there but it's delivered in parts, malt, hops, booze. Could be a bit tighter. Perhaps a bit overly sweet as well though I'm not bothered by it, Karl Strauss does a good job keeping the ABV down in the nose and the head retention is amazing.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2012 04:39:55 | More by rawfish
Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
OBeerMeGreatOne

California

2.9/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a nice gold/orange with about an inch of head. It leaves a decent amount of sticky lace behind.

The smell is blood orange, mineral and light malts. A bit of booze peeks through which makes me cringe a little (and I heart big beers, so it normally isn't a problem.)

I get pale malts right at the start with a heavy slap of citrus and mineral hops soon after. This would be fine if a heavy alcohol heat didn't follow the hops. I like the hop punch but wish the alcohol wasn't as noticable. Goes down hot and hard.

I wish there was more to this brew. It has the hops but doesn't deliver them as well as I would have liked. Not a drain pour, but I won't pick it up again unless they tinker with the recipe a bit.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2012 02:38:59 | More by OBeerMeGreatOne
Photo of SoCalBeerIdiot
SoCalBeerIdiot

California

3.75/5  rDev +4.2%

03-03-2014 04:07:18 | More by SoCalBeerIdiot
Photo of Nugganooch
Nugganooch

California

2.93/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bomber to pint glass
*Consumed on 05-12-12

A: Tower 20 pours an amber color that is caramel-orange, almost copper hued, displaying some excellent clarity. Big froth of ivory foam head. Some sporatic patches of dots and lace.

S: Pronounced caramel malt aroma. Sugary grains with some super faint underlying pine and florals. An unfortunate precursor of things to come.

T: Balance is malt forward with a heavy handed use of Crystals. Caramel sweet malty bread and just lacking the hops to counter. Does have a moderate bitterness level. With a bit of work I can pull out some hop flavors by way of pine and orange fruit. The alcohol asserts itself in the finish. This is just plain not good. In dire need of a much dryer finish and absurd amount of dry hops to counter the malty sweetness here.

M: Medium heavier body or at least seemingly that way from the sugary malts. Finish is a bit wet with some slight sticky residuals.

D: A caramel malt bomb if that is to your liking but just not the DIPA for me. I expect much more from a founding San Diego brewery.

I don't know how Karl went wrong here. Tower 10 is such a nice IPA and as others have stated this is not a double take on that beer.

NOT worth hoarding!

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2012 16:45:42 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of alienlifeforcecube
alienlifeforcecube

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

08-09-2013 03:12:32 | More by alienlifeforcecube
Photo of Raziel313
Raziel313

California

4/5  rDev +11.1%

01-30-2014 10:48:01 | More by Raziel313
Photo of Teleweizen2
Teleweizen2

New Jersey

3.01/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - pours a crystal clear orangey auburn color. 2 fingers of thick off-white foam dissipates rather quickly but leaves a web of lacing on the glass.

S - the nose seems a bit muted overall. Lots of warm, gooey,sweet caramel notes. Hints of candied citrus peel and grapefruit pulp. there is quite a bit of leafy green and vegetal notes as well.

T - crispy bread crust and chewy caramel notes dominate the front plate. Hints of sweet cherries quickly add a bit of depth to the flavor. Snappy citric bitterness comes forth mid palate along with piney and herbal qualities. Finish is warming and piney with a hint of cherries.

M - creamy textured full bodied with high carbonation.

O - an alight beer but i definitly did not drink it in the time frame i should have. But to be honest i feel i have a decent idea of what it would taste like if it where fresher and while i'm sure its much better i doubt my scores would change much.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2013 01:30:40 | More by Teleweizen2
Photo of Mister_Joshy
Mister_Joshy

California

3.5/5  rDev -2.8%

05-30-2012 05:38:32 | More by Mister_Joshy
Tower 20 Double IPA from Karl Strauss Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 57 ratings.