Slipknot Imperial IPA (Brewmaster Reserve) - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

Not Rated.
Slipknot Imperial IPA (Brewmaster Reserve)Slipknot Imperial IPA (Brewmaster Reserve)

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158 Ratings

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Ratings: 158
Reviews: 145
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 18.33%
Wants: 4
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A Brewmaster Reserve release - Spring 2008

(Beer added by: sinistersteve on 02-25-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 158 | Reviews: 145 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Mark
4.33/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a medium amber and had a slightly off white head. Retention and lacing were nice. Piney nose is very inviting. Hop storage room fresh! Same piney notes are present in the taste but balanced by a very nutty and biscuity malt profile that really is what made this beer work for me. A very nice Imperial IPA that is quite drinkable for the strength. Give the good folks at Full Sail some love and pick this one up. Good beer.

Photo of rayjay
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

West coast-style IPA with a medium pale body. Lightly hazy. Maybe a bit light colored for some, but I personally like my IPAs to be light in color. Grains are notable in the nose; it reminds me of Butte Creek IPA, although can't explain why, perhaps the same yeast? High-alpha hops are in there but not exactly in double IPA proportions. The body is light for a double, but it is a nice, drinkable, stronger than average IPA. The hops aren't especially resinous or aromatic, nor are they intimitating, but they are tasty and bitter and force the malts out of the spotlight and into the chorus. I guess I'm not very impressed by this beer, although I'm in no way offended by it. Refreshing and inviting. It's a good beer, and a good IPA, but just for comparison it couldn't really hold it's own in a match with the big boys. Cheers!

Photo of Zorro
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured in the glass this is a cloudy reddish brown beer without much head formation.

The smell is very sweet and fruity and really smells more like a Barleywine than a super IPA. Sweet and woody with the aroma of cherry, cinnamon, ginger, toffee, fig and leather.

The taste begins mildly sweet and bitter with lots of wood and toffee in the taste. After you acclimate to the bitterness this becomes fairly candy like in the mouth mostly the taste of toffee. This does have a wicked harsh aftertaste after a while though; too much high alpha acid hops were used. This tastes more like a barley wine than a super IPA; this is fresh Sierra Nevada Bigfoot type bitter.

The mouthfeel is thin and probably the weakest point of this beer.

Drinkability is OK here but not great. This REALLY isn't an IPA, this is a Barleywine. As a barley wine this is not bad with some mild harshness issues that should smooth out in about two years. As an Imperial IPA this simply doesn't cut it, it is seriously lacking in complex hop flavors and aromas. As an IPA this is at best a 2.5, as a Barleywine this is a near 4.0 beer.

Photo of msubulldog25
3.95/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle to a standard pint. From the "2007 BrewMaster Series" and touted as 7.8% ABV.

A: Hazy Golden-copper with barely a 1/2 finger creamy white head, fading to faint wisps of smoky film. Splotches of lace affix themselves sporadically across the glass as it drains.

S: A funky melding of bitter, almost grotesquely pungent, earthy hops and a hidden layer of malty/sugary sweetness from a toffee-ish malt.

T: Big hops upfront, a jumbled mix. Is it citrus, pine, spicy, earthy or herbal? The result isn't bad, it's just undefined. Some toasty sweet malts sneak their way through the hops, giving a nicer balance. Finish is pretty bitter, mostly a tangy/juicy grapefruit.

M: Medium mouthfeel with a gently prickly carbonation. Once the bittering hops die down, a clinging grainy malt sweetness lingers. Some warmth from the alcohol, but not inconsistent with the style.

D: A good IIPA, though not terribly complex. Certainly good enough to have again and worth grabbing when available.

Photo of Matthew
3.85/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber. Pours into my glass a murky burnt orange color with a sudsy head and lots of lacing.
Citrusy hops are big in the nose with some earthy, piney and apple like aromas against a backdrop of grainy sweet maltiness.
A kick of citrusy bitter hops, lemon rind, lots of pine in the tail end of each sip melded with the grainy sweetness described in the nose. Basically some big hoppiness and some semi balanced grainy sweet maltiness attempting to balance it all out. Not a super complex DIPA, hop profile not all that well defined, just sort of a bunch of hoppy flavors all hanging out in this beer, but certainly tasty enough to enjoy a bomber with some snacks. I'd grab another one of these especially at $3.99.

Photo of woemad
4.35/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big-ass 22oz bottle purchased at Jim’s Homebrew in Spokane for $3.95. No freshness date.

Poured a hazy orange color with a moderate, off-white head. Lots of lace. Looks a bit like an orange cream soda.

The aroma is of citrusy and piney hop goodness. Smells like this is gonna be a scorcher, and that’s fine by me.

The taste confirms the impression made by the scent. This is a sharp, bitter hoppy blast that starts out with a grapefruit flavor, then graduates to oily piney bitterness. There’s extremely reticent caramel sweetness in the background, but this is the hops’ show.

This is highly carbonated and has a “busy” mouthfeel. It’s definitely a medium bodied beer.

Not a bad IPA at all. I think it’s a little one-dimensional, but the dimension in question isn’t a bad place to hang out. The abv is a little high to use this as a session beer, but it’s still a fine beer for hopheads. I would definitely buy this again.

Photo of wcudwight
3.05/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Many thanks to xcondonex for the bomber.
Poured into a snifter a red/orange color with a sticky 2 finger head that quickly disappaited into a sticky off-white cap. Lacing completely covers the sides of the glass.
Smell is a mess of hops. It's very hoppy and that's good. I just can't distinguish the differences. Piney, citrus, floral, they are all there, but I can't tell what's what.
Taste is much the same. Dominated by the hops, with a nice alcohol finish. Still the hops are a mess on the taste buds. Attacking and wrecking havock. I love hoppy beers. But there is something about the others that this one is missing. It's almost like blending a bunch of colors until you just end up with black.
Mouthfeel is the expected oily and sticky, but just a bit harsh.
Overall it's not a bad beer, just seems confused to me..

Photo of RedwoodGeorge
4.38/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours out a hazy orange-brown with a one finger cream-colored crown. The head takes a while to dies off and leaves a good bit of sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

The nose is pine tar, citrus peel and a touch of peach schnapps. There's a subtle fruity sweetness in the nose likely helped by the alcohol. The nose has some of the interesting complexities of a British Pale Ale both from an earthy hops note and a sweet yeast aroma.

The taste is equally complex with the hop flavors predominating but a good balance of sweet golden malt flavors and fruity undertones. The hops predominate but this is a nicely balanced brew. Hops are both citric and earthy / floral leaving quite a few hop flavors to savor. Malt sweetness is present but mild with a biscuity grain flavor counterbalancing all the hop flavors.

Mouthfeel is wonderful. The beer is medium bodied and has a thickness on the palate like unfiltered apple juice or apricot nectar. The carbonation is fine, fuzzy bubbles that add to the delicacy of the experience. Hop bittering is moderate to strong and brings each sip to a clean, dry finish. No residual sugars on the tongue and just a tiny bit of enamel erosion with each sip.

I've spend quite a while thinking "this beer reminds me of something familiar -what?" and it finally struck me - this beer reminds me of Bell's Two Hearted Ale, one of my favorite IPAs. It's tough to compare anything to Two Hearted but I think this fares well in comparison. This is a very nice, complex IIPA with some interesting hop flavors and a mouthfeel that can only come from an unfiltered, bottle conditioned brew.

Photo of carln26
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured from a bomber into a snifter a bright copper color topped by a fluffy, almost chunky off-white head. The head leaves a nice lace as it settles into the glass. The nose has a mild citrus character, backed by light caramel. Uh oh, is that a little tea (read oxidation) I detect? The taste doesn’t show that oxidation. This beer displays a bit more balance than I expected. It has a light bitterness up front, followed by toffee caramel. Just a touch of orange citrus on the finish. It does show alcohol, along with a slick mouth feel. Decent drinkability, not great.

Photo of Tupperwolf
2.98/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a rather hazy, slightly glowing amber with a thin yellowish head; Little carbonation is visible in the murk, and the head fades immediately to a thin ring that leaves basically no lacing.

The scent is a mish-mash of strong hop aromas - very resinous and marijuana-like, it doesn't take on one aroma over another - there's grapefruit, pine, grassiness, and floral aromas, but they're all muddled up together so that the pretty colors of the smell are just kind of greyish brown. Very hoppy, but a bit unrefined. Heads hoppier than I might find it more pleasing.

The taste is similar - hops are dominant, and there are a lot of flavors there, but they are so mixed up as to just come across as oily, resinous, and bitter. This is how I imagine a regular bone-stock IPA tastes like when run through Randal. As it warms, a few caramel malts peek through, but bitterness beats 'em down.

The mouthfeel is somewhat interesting - this is the first beer I've had that actually does feel like it's stripping the enamel off of your teeth. It's slick and oily, and makes your jaw clench up reflexively with the sensation of the hops. Alcohol is also dominant, not in taste, but in perception - this is the first beer I've had that tastes warm when served at 45 degrees. It literally doesn't feel cold at all, it feels like it's lukewarm in your mouth. Swallowing, oddly, reminds me of swallowing toothpaste. The oiliness foams up with the agitation of swallowing, and it gets all fluffy.

For a beer, this is merely okay. For a double IPA, it's below par. Sorry, Full Sail.

Photo of bobarito
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a nice golden-orange color with a decent layer of foam. The viscosity of the beer could be seen in the CO2 bubbles rising slowly to the top. The beer is quite clear - possibly a bit light for the style I believe, but I personally love the color. The beer has a decent hop aroma, but not a whole lot going on. Nothing that really yells Double IPA. Slightly citrusy and sweet. The viscosity of the beer can be felt immediately with the first sip, and the beer sits on the tounge nicely, perfect carbonation. It seems well balanced (for a double IPA) and the hop profile works well. Not extremely bitter at the end and the beer actually passes down the gullet smoothly. The alcohol level is apparent but definitely not overwhelming.

Photo of meathookjones
3.18/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep golden amber colored body with a full foamy head that went a bit light on lace as it was consumed. Odd herbal smell with a weak citric hop bitterness. Light malty notes. Flavor started off with the weird herbal notes that seemed out of place and followed with some citric and piney hop bitterness. Some malt sweetness balanced the hops out. Light bitter prickliness on the finish. Solid enough body. Easy enough drinking but not quite as flavorful as I like my double IPA’s. Not bad just an average DIPA.

Photo of unklesyd
3.08/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hmm... I didn't really care much for anything about this brew, although I've had last years (2005) and thought it was better.

Overly pale for a beer its size. Very pale amber.

Citrusy hop nose, but very faint.

Extraordinarily unbalanced to the hops. Even for the style, this was way overloaded, to the point that the bitterness was astringent and cutting rather than crisp.

Because of the (lack of) balance, this tires the palate too much. It did mellow as it warmed, but not enough. Much better blend last year.

Photo of jamesdergen
4.85/5  rDev +34.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours a golden, honey color with a one-finger just off-white head.

Smell: I could smell this beer before I held it to my nose to take a whiff. Sweet, grassy hop aroma with hints of alcohol and honey.

Taste: Fantastically smooth hop explosion. Very grassy, but also with a nice bitterness to it. Perfectly balanced with a nutty, sweet caramelly malt backbone. Alcohol is very well-hidden.

Mouthfeel: Unbelievably smooth for the style and ABV. Light-to-medium bodied and perfectly carbonated.

Drinkability: I can't think of anything to improve the drinkability. Goes down easy, very smooth and well-hidden alcohol combined with a great tasting hop festival in my mouth!

I am obviously quite impressed with this brew, another find on I wish I could find this around here because it would become part of the regular rotation. If you can get this in your area, I am very jealous of you.

Photo of ElGordo
4.08/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright amber hue topped by a creamy white head, with little carbonation in the bottle. Nice, sweet aroma of fresh, fruity hops, with a ton of grapefruit, white grape, and grass blended with a touch of light malt. Palate is well-balanced between light malt and fruity hops up front, becoming strictly hops on the dry, bittersweet, lupulin-laced finish. Mouthfeel is very dry, but conveys the flavor quite well. Very drinkable for a beer of this stature.

Photo of Muddybuddy
4.2/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2006 Brewmaster Reserve Sampled on 1-24-06

Appearance: Very transparent amber color with a generous white head that dissipates quickly, but leaves a thin white layer. Very clear and free of sediment and debris. Looks appetizing.

Smell: Very malty with a hint of orange. Much sweeter smelling than I expect an IPA to be, but as this is a double, I don't really know what to expect. Slightly yeasty, but still appealing.

Taste:The first thing I notice is a very nice herbal hops taste with a bittering that stays in check with the slightly toasty malt flavor. I don't think I have ever had quite as tasty a brew. This, in my opinion would go exceedingly well with herbal Italian dishes, spicy Thai or Indian food, Sushi (when using wasabi...) or pretty much anything worthy of a good beer.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is apparently in a relatively thin liquid as the carbonation mostly left with the pour, but this also helps to keep the drink from being cloying and sticking to the mouth. This has a similar consistency to a tea but will kick up a little carbonation if agitated by pressing the tongue to your palate. Much drier than I am used to beer being.

Drinkability: I really like this, but it is a special beer which I will save for special occasions. This wouldn't be a great session beer because of the alcohol content and the fact that I want to just savor it.

Photo of GClarkage
4.05/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

01/18/06- Purchased at Bottle Barn in Santa Rosa, CA

Presentation- 2006 version. 22oz bottle poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Perfect amber description. Full one inch head which quickly disapates to about 1/4 inch. Small rim remains throughout. Medium lacing left behind.

Smell- The first thing my nose catches is a nice toasted malt scent. Maybe a touch bready. Strong honeydew like scent along with some green apples. Plus the typical grapefruit. Not really any pine though.

Taste- Full bitter barage of apple, peach and grapefruit flavored hops. Nicely backed by a equaly amount of toasted malt flavor. Very nicely balanced.

Mouthfeel- Medium to a lower carbonated feel. Still have a slight bitter aftertaste.

Drinkability- Not bad at all. One of the better balanced DIPA's I've come across. Dare I say a session DIPA at only 7.5 abv? Tasty and easy to drink. Not quite as flavorful as the premeire DIPA's though.

Photo of czechsaaz
4.03/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Lots of floral hops. Not grassy fresh hops but mellow earthy and flowery. Light caramel malt backbone.

Amber, clear with a quick fading thick head. The small head that lasts leaves very nice lacing.

Interesting. For a quck second it's very bitter but then that fades almost immediately to the malt. Kind of Brown sugary flavor. Then mid palate it goes back to bitter and the aftertaste is malty and a little sweeter than I'd expect. But it makes for a nice balanced beer. Probably less hoppy than most people would want in a D/I IPA but it suits my tastes just fine.

Medium to full bodied with carbonation level is pretty low.

Nice well made beer. I would definitely drink it again. Not necessarily the first beer I'd go for but a solid choice.

Photo of Gruntlumber
4.38/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Although I love beers that are competitively hoppy, I'm not always in the mood for "shock value". It seems Slipknot would be more accurately labeled as a Barleywine rather than IIPA. This is excellent beer! Looks good, smells good, and I could easily drink too much. Very well balanced between a citrusy hop bite and a slightly sweet malty background. When I say balanced I mean for an IIPA where usually it's hops hops hops. This bomber didn't last long.

Photo of beerceller99
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle. Has an amber color with a huge frothy head. The medium strong hop smell is citrusy, flowery. Medium bodied and softly carbonated. A strong malty sweet grain flavor anchors and meshes nicely with a fairly strong citrusy hop taste.
A most tasty IPA.

Photo of RoyalT
4.08/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This one poured a clear, brilliant orange in color with a huge, frothing head that showed great retention.

Smell – The big, complex hop nose is spectacular. The pine is big but unusually smooth and the citrus is equally luscious and inviting. The orange and grapefruit flavors work in perfect harmony here.

There’s a light caramel smell as well, but this does not have a big, malty backbone like a lot of ADIPAs. This one is just a symphony of hops.

Taste – Amazingly, all the big, smelly hops from the nose made there way to the taste buds. You get the smooth pine, creamy orange, tingly grapefruit, and a few other flavors that I can’t nail down. Again, the malt is well in the background here and consists mostly of sweetish caramel notes.

Mouthfeel – This one is only medium-bodied, which puts it on the light side for the ADIPA style. It’s very dry though with a creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability – If there’s such a thing as a session ADIPA then this is it. It goes down incredibly well yet doesn’t fill you up. I got a 2005 vintage so it is very fresh. I’m thinking you could cellar this for a few months to “malt it up” if you wanted.

Comments – Because this doesn’t have a big malty backbone like a lot of other examples of the style, some may “pooh-pooh” this effort by Full Sail. However, the hops profile here has taken things to a whole new level.

Photo of alexgash
3.23/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Mandarin brass body. Quite clear and clean looking. BIg, creamy, light khaki head. Nice lacing. Pitchy, douglas fir sap, citrusy, Northwest hop bill aroma, with a candied fruit and toffee malt backbone. Not as over-the-top hoppy as I would expect from an Oregon brewed DIPA. Hmmm...balance? Yessir. Taste starts with brief malt sweetness, it's very quick so it's hard to tell, but seems fruity. Big astringently bitter hop bite crashes down. Jesus. Numbingly bitter, but there's not much taste. Minor pine and citrus notes, but mostly just bitter. There's a big alcohol burn acoompanying the hops that is just too much. It makes this 7.8% brew taste like a 12%! Medium bodied, decent mouthfeel.

Photo of charlatan
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Beer sampled on tap at the Basement Pub (recommended for scruffy types) in Portland. This was a Monday night so I was fortunate enough to receive a proper (imperial) pint.

Head stuck around for a while, but left little in the way of lacing on the glass. Colour was difficult to assess in this dingy establishment, and my sniff test was affected too, but I did detect a sweet, citrusy whiff.

Syrupy sweet grapefruit flavour with a tinge of apricot gradually gave way to more bitter aftertaste. Alcohol was rather more apparent than is desirable, but the beer went down pretty easily. I could have happily gone for a second. The India Pelican Ale (available at the same venue) is a little more to my taste though.

Photo of GreenWBush
3.15/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Aged penny in color, this beer sits in its vessel already starting to form a modest lace.

The nose is rich, deep, and not surprisingly pretty hoppy. Reeks of alcohol at cold, but the smells wrap around the woody hop eventually.

Toasty rich grain maltiness aligns well with mellow "near noble" hops. A medium mouthfeel leaves a little to be expected, and its lack of serious hoppiness and overzealous presence of alcohol make this one only a middle of the road offering.

Photo of Mitchster
4.35/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out to a very hazy orangeish-copper, forming a tall soapy and creamy off-yellow head with excellent retention and gorgeous lacing, as expected for an oily Imperial IPA. Aroma is wonderful...piney, fruity, resinous and oily hop bouquet that doesn't burn the nose, and smells like it's nicely in balance with chewy amber malts, fruity esters, and a clean ferment. Carbonation is moderate. The taste is a nice representation of the aroma, starting with sticky and oily hop resins...tastes like some Mt.Hood, Amarillo, and Northern Brewers hops in there. The up-front hop taste isn't caustic and is nicely balanced with chewy malts and lots of fruity esters. Bitterness is peacefully moderate in intensity and has an interesting peachy/banana twang towards the finish. The finish is both wet, in the sense that it goes down easily and has a smooth feel, but with a slight astringency in the edges of the mouth. Cleanly fermented with no appreciable off-flavors or perceptable alcohol.

This may not be as forceful or intense as other Imperials IPA's, but this is good news in my book. Don't get me wrong, this is rich and potent, but also nicely balanced for the style and not like drinking pine needles stewed in bile. At $3.99/22oz bomber, this is a pretty good deal and I would gladly buy it again. Very good stuff, and it totally gets you messed up. Seriously.

Slipknot Imperial IPA (Brewmaster Reserve) from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
82 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.