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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

(view ratings)
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 sinistermadman
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

'08 version.
Pours a slightly chilled copper color with a minimal off white head. Nice pungent, grassy hop aroma. Taste is citrus rind laden hop bitterness, with a toasty malt backdrop. Very faint residual sweetness. Slightly sticky, slick mouthfeel with lingering bitterness from hops. This one is a bit out of whack, but not bad at all. Cheers.

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 Tolann
1.63/5  rDev -54.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

A - clear amber with a mostly white head that thinned.

S - piney resin smell. Soured apple maybe? Certainly not what I expected.

T - Wrong. This bottle is just wrong. Taste is sour and maybe like something I'd find under the sink. Lysol? This bottle is only being difficult to review.

M - light mouth feel. Some carbonation. Still doesn't make this a good beer.

D - No. Don't do it. Don't think I'll be finishing this bottle and I HATE to pour out a beer. I think picking scabs would be more enjoyable than this bottle.

I respect Full Sail and I greatly appreciate their beers. I hope this was just a bad bottle.

Photo of josiahschlender
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at the Green Dragon in Portland. It came out with a minimal, quick-fading rocky head that left little lacing. Color was medium-old penny copper, with great clarity.

Smell was dominated by grassy, bitter, citric hops with a little bit of sweet malts coming through. Pretty aromatic, but not the level of many other double IPAs out there.

Taste was a little disappointing to me. It's dominated by the bitter, lemon peel hops, but without much else going on. With some concentration and effort I could notice some roasted malts between the initial hop assault and aftertaste. The malts also impart some sweetness, but I wouldn't call this a "balanced" double IPA.

Body was medium, maybe a little too bright and hot. A little too much carbonation and not enough masking of the alcohol? I love this style of beer, but this one just isn't doing it for me this time.

The beer came out in a smaller than usual glass (12-14 oz?) than typical pints, and I found myself almost sadly grateful it wasn't bigger. I'm not writing off this beer forever, but in the double IPA world, it's not very high on my list.

Photo of hophead247
2.95/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle...Just an average IPA for me, more of a regular one than an Imperial. Poured a nice clear copper color and instantly the head was gone. The smell was a little on the sweet malty side for me, with a faint smell of hops. Wasn't impressed with the taste, but it wasn't horrible. Didn't taste like an IPA to me, but a stronger amber ale. More of a malt character takes over this ale, and I was expecting at least a 50/50 hops to malt comparison. Easy to drink, but didn't taste like an IPA to me and will pass on it next time

Photo of BDJake
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- clear brown-orange with a quickly dissipating head that didn't lace much

S- hoppy citrus notes (orange peel, grapefruit) that is surprisingly mild underneath

T- bitter and hoppy, with some grapefruit, a little peppery, and two rows of malt, no more

M- thin for the style, with a lingering aftertaste

D- wouldn't be too bad, but the aftertaste kept me from going too fast with it

Photo of Chelsea1905
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice amber colour with a somewhat brown-tinged head. THe head soon disapaited and left a small white film that left minimal lacing.

THe initial smell is of bubblegum, or sweet candy! However, once that passes you're left with a mild hoppy backbone, then grapefruit and gooseberry!

The taste is really nice, sweet and citrusy up front, the initial sweet taste soon makes way. After a couple mouthfulls you get the malty backbone the more you drink.

Minimal effervescence, light mouthfeel to slightly medium

A little bitter in the drinkability, and not a bad ABV. Will drink bomber easily!


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

A well rounded, balanced IIPA. Not a killer hop bomb like many. Instead, it has a lot of lager like characters, but with a lot more complexity. It reminds me of a really strong session lager, with a lot more hops.

Pours crystal clear- a beautiful honey amber color. Big head, on a fairly aggressive pour. little lacing.

Smells like a super potent lager to me. Of course, with a lot more hops than normal. Citrus, pine, citrus.

Taste of malt and hops, pretty evenly asserting themselves. this is an approachable IIPA. A good place to start if you're not familiar with the style. Citrus, pine, toasty malt. Good Hoppy bitterness, but nice malty sweetness to round it out. Mild on the finish with a little twang of tart flavor. Really tasty.

Feels nice on the palate. maybe not as velvety as some IIPAs, but very good. I poured pretty aggressively, so that may have muted the carbonartion a bit, but it's really nice.

This is a very good beer. It's definitely in the major leagues of IIPAs. There are others that i would rather have, but most of those are at least twice as expensive. This is a fantastic beer value.

Photo of ToddKehoe
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%

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

A new beer from Full Sail. I have no idea if this is a limited brew or a seasonal brew. The color of the beer is a standard amber color. No real aroma emanated from the beer. The taste was hard to pin down. Sorta sprucy, sorta soapy, definately taste of alcohol. I guess the best way to put it is that it is 'bitter sweet'. Very thin head..even when the glass got bumped and not a bit of lace. Hard to say if I'll get this one again from the same pub. I may try it elsewhere and see if the 'soapy' taste returns or if the bottle version is any different also.

**Update** I did try this beer elsewhere and obviously the first place I tried this beer at does not take proper care of their beer lines. Tried this one at the Horse Brass Pub and there was not a bit of 'soapy' taste to it and there also wasn't a strong taste of alcohol either. Still a good beer though.

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 garthwaite
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber with slick orange/yellow label provided courtesy of skyhand - many thanks!

Pours a beautiful hazy amber with a perfect bubbly white head. Pleasant spicy fresh floral hops in the aroma, but considerably more subdued than I expected from the style. The taste is very complex & most unexpected. Nice malt backbone makes this enjoyably sweet, alcohol is evident along with flowery hops. Finish is mildly acidic with solid bittering & some fruitiness. Mouthfeel is full & crisp. To me, this is a very unique take on the style, not nearly as hoppy as I had expected or hoped for, but very complex & most definitely delicious.

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

pours a clear golden orange in color with egg-shell white head.

aromas of grapefruit, pine, faint light malt

grapefruit upfront with solid piney finish, floral notes at the tail end as well with a little maltiness, albeit very light

smooth, light bodied, solid finish

a solid ipa, a bit more citrusy than i prefer but its smooth, tastes like an ipa should, and is a very enjoyable beer

Photo of jtfest
3.33/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear, orange-hued amber with a small white head that diminishes to a thin layer. The aroma is hoppy, but not as hoppy as I would expect from an Imperial IPA (The Tsar is not pleased). The brew has a thick, full mouthfeel, but the taste is similar to the aroma -- good, hoppy, but somewhat lacking. This isn't even in the same league as the Pelican Imperial IPA that I reviewed recently, or the Rogue I2PA that I sampled last week. Drinkable, but in a "ho-hum" way. Overall, it's not bad, it just is a 90 pound weakling on the Imperial IPA beach.

Photo of HeroJH
2/5  rDev -44.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I don't know if I got a bad bottle or what. But I ended up dumping the last half of my 22oz bottle. I might have to try it again sometime, but some of the other low scores had similar thoughts as I.

A - Medium Gold, low head retention.

S - Sour hop, and B.O.? seriously. I had another person agree on that. So it was similar to being skunky but then add the sour and bitter of the hops.

T - One dimensional. Bitter. Acidic. Seltzer.

M - Finishes sour.

D - Didn't even finish it. And it pretty much blasted my palette so I couldn't enjoy anything else after.

Photo of Grabbin2nd
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

From Notes: 3/1/09
Full Sail Brewing Co.
Slipknot Imperial IPA
7.8% Alc.
22oz. Bomber

Appearance= Vigorous pour into Zaca Mesa oversize redwine glass. Good deep looking Imperial. Deep orange, Red/brown.

Smell= Good hoppy smell. Typical Imperial smell, just weaker.

Taste= Kinda harsh on the taste. Not bad, just interesting...Overall, I've had much better Imperials.

Mouthfeel= Typical Imperial feel. Pefect for the style.

Drinkability= Moving through the bottle with no problem. Can start to feel the alcohol. I bought this @ Whole Foods in San Ramon and I was surprised to see it there. Would not buy again.

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

From a bomber into a New Belgium goblet. A vigorous poured yields a honey/orange ale with ample soapy head which momentarily fades down.

Cascade and Centennial hops dominate the nose with nearly equal measure earth, spice, citrus, and pine characteristics. A hint of malty sweetness manages to work it's way through, however.

Flavors are hop forward too; especially piney and spicey, with that sort of "soapy pine sol" like character. The malts relatively balance the beer, and although the hops linger, the bitterness they impart isn't thouroughly palate-wrecking. A bit of bready/yeastiness is also detected.

Mouthfeel is medium light for the style, amply carbonated and a bit grainy. Somewhat like a cracker that has dissolved in the mouth.

The ABV is low for a DIPA, still the cumulative effects of the hop bill would probably limit me to 22 oz. in one session and then I'd move on to something else.

A good, food friendly ale and a bargain at $3.49 locally.

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 LiquidSolutions.biz. 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 mjd83goblue
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber from Bottleworks(!) in Seattle for $3.69. 2008 Brewmaster's reserve.

Poured very clear with a large foamy head. Caramel colored with some shades of amber. A thin layer of foam stays with minimal lacing. Overall solid looking.

Smell was lacking. Some piney hops, but they didn't exactly jump out. Something soapy too? Unimpressive.

Taste is a different story. Huge hop bitterness. A lemony flavor (think SA Summer) and also some sort of light fruit (banana?). Also a rye-like bite. Hops finish abrasively, the malt doesn't stand up.

Mouthfeel is nice and clean. A little hot for only 7.8%. Nice to drink, if you are a total hophead.

Overall too unbalanced to truly be successful. I would recommend pushing up the grain and bringing it up to around 9-10% to even it out some. Or maybe let this one sit down for a year. Good but not great.

Photo of boogyman
2.4/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Picked up a bottle of Brewmaster Reserve 2010 at my local store.

A- Poured a strong copper color with a frothy white head that sticks around. Even after letting it sit for like 5 minutes it still has a strong half finger of head. There are bubbles that are constantly refueling the head which is pretty cool. Lacing looks to be promising. So far this is a good lookin' DIPA.

S- Right off the bat I get strong citric smells including the likes of grapefruit, orange peel, maybe a bit of lemon. I even got some banana going on there. So far a fairly typical DIPA in terms of smell.

T- Interesting... I am being hit on the palate by some unexpected bitter funk. It is almost like a weird mix of malt and hops. I can't really tell what it is but it definitely sticks around on the back of the tongue and mouth. It even kills the smells after drinking it. I kept this beer pretty cold, likely close to 35-40 degrees so I am gonna let it warm up a bit and continue.


After letting it sit for about 10 minutes or so, the taste has improved only slightly. There is still this weird funk that I just can't get a handle of and I am not enjoying too much.I have enjoyed many IPAs and IIPAs but this one just is not doing it for me in the taste.

M- Fairly high carbonation brings on a good bite with the strong bitterness. If only the bitterness didn't come with this weird funk.

D- I can't give this a very high rating here either given the taste. I really tried on this one and I will come out and say that IIPA is by far my favorite style but this one was just not that great overall.

Photo of peck95
1.93/5  rDev -46.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

i find most full sail products to be good and i had last years version of the slipknot and remember it to be much better. So with that i give you my rating of this years version of slipknot
this is one of the first times that i really wasn't impressed with an imperial ipa. the appearance is a very light amber with some decent head retention and lacing that is about the best thing about this beer. the smell is of a very light amount of mildew grass. The initial taste is bad a small amount of bitterness but no distinct hop flavor and some malt sweetness. mouthfeel is light with a little bit of alcohol burn. drinkability to quote my wife "i'd rather have a mgd" coming from her that's bad, although i did finish the 22 oz bomber so i gave it a 2.5

Photo of ThickestHead
4.15/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chilled pint glass (in intervals).
Mostly clear, medium copper color with a foamy off-white head.
Smells of pine and kind buds, plus something sweet like a bisquit with white frosting.
Tastes of bitter grapefruit and some bready malt.
Medium body with decent carbonation and a bitterness (which must be from the hops) that stays with me but isn't overly oily.
Nice brew, I could sit back and enjoy one of these in almost any setting and just forget the hustle and bustle that beckons.

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 jletts
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

Appears clean and clear, with a light amber hue and a good 2 finger head that quickly faded to a narrow band of off-white foam. No real lacing is noticeable.

Smells of citrus hops with some weak floral notes. Some hop dankness in there, a bit piney.

The taste is dominated by hops, strong on the citrus flavors. Hops, hops and more hops assault the taste buds. A little bready in the middle, the only real malt characteristic to come through in this brew. A bitter hop after-bite….you can really feel this one on the back of the tongue.

Drinkability is just ok. Not necessarily due to the high ABV, but more the flavor. Seems a little one-dimensional. I didn’t find this beer to be very complex, perhaps I just prefer my Imperial IPA’s with a deeper malt backbone and better balance. I wouldn’t drink more than one in a sitting. However, as a side note, I found last year’s offering to be a better brew. Unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to review it.

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.

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