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IPA - Rubicon Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

174 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 174
Reviews: 104
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 14.21%
Wants: 7
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Rubicon Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-21-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 174 | Reviews: 104 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of alleykatking
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle from Mauerhan....thanks Topher!

A- Poured into my Bell's pint glass. Nice golden orange color with some slight haze to it. Good one and a half finger pretty white head. Left good amounts of lacing on the side that look like they are clinging on for dear life.

S- Nice bitter earthy hop aroma to it. Pick up on a little grapefruit as well. Some sweet malts can be picked up on the undertones of this beer along with a slight hint of alcohol as well. Nothing to overpowering but it lets you know it's in there.

T- Some of the hops have begun to fade but holy shit the first taste I took I puckered my lips a little from the bitterness. Good stuff for sure! The big bitter hops take full charge right off the bat and it's like a battering ram knocking up against your palate. The malts come through a little more in the middle of the taste which I think is nice but I'm sure if this was alittle fresher that wouldn't be there. I personally am glad it is. The ending of this beer has some more hops to it but not quite as bitter as the first taste would suggest. Kind of a one trick pony but at the same time it's a little more complex than that. Good clean taste overall though.

M- This is a medium mouthfeel beer. The carbination is dead on making this beer neither dance or walk across the palate. More like it floats it across. I enjoy it a lot. The hops make their residence on your tounge shortly after you swallow the beer. Nice clean hop aftertaste.

D- This beer is pretty good with some age on it. I would like to try on tap to get the full feel for it but a nice add to the IPA world as a whole. Good job guys!

Photo of jackorain
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I split this bomber between 2 large burgundy wine glasses to share with my wife.

Pours a cloudy but bright orange color with a ¾ inch white head that fell rather quickly but left a very tall collar and bubbly, splotchy coat.

Aroma of grapefruit and tangerine hit first. This is followed by a touch of sweet caramel Not complex but nice.

Flavor profile is a bit more complex that the aroma. Piney hops and piney bitterness hits 1st. This is followed by the grapefruit. The caramel and sweetness is not as perceptible in the flavor as the nose but it is there. Hop bitterness is not overly high but it is a bit harsh. The finish is heavy on the grapefruit juice and grapefruit like bitterness, which is a quality that I like.

Medium body with a medium carbonation. Sticky and oily feel

I suppose I could have a few of these, or more.

Photo of brentk56
3.93/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear honey color with a huge head that sticks well and leaves quite a bit of lacing, too

Smell: Pithy grapefruit and a hint of pineapple and biscuit malt

Taste: The hops don't waste any time dominating the biscuit on this beer and they continue to build through mid-palate, although a slight metallic tendancy is noted; after the swallow, the flavor is slightly more balanced, but this beer is a West Coast IPA through and through

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: This beer will wear out your tongue but it is still a very nice example of the West Coast style

Photo of Stephen63
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Blonde-ish appearance, reasonable head.

S - Sweet with mild citrus, pretty nice.

T - Bitterness comes in at the end but citrus flavours very apparent.

M - Nice carboation, quite sour on the palate.

D - Very moreish. Stronger than ones I am used to.

A typical IPA, well up with the best I have tasted. Well above the strength of UK IPAs. Recommended.

Photo of illidurit
3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into a pint glass. Hazy goldenrod with a light beige head that leaves some wispy film behind. Aromas of pineapple and toffee. Not especially robust. Flavor is malty and woody with zero citrus. Some hop bitterness but not a lot of hop flavor. Some herbal notes and astringency as well. Very dry on the palate. Tastes like an IPA that hasn't been stored properly.

Photo of htomsirveaux
3.18/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz. bottle tried 13 Mar 2009.

Poured in a Sierra Nevada pint glass. Very large, fluffy peach colored head. Light carbonation. Aromas of soap, pineapple, toffee. Starts with a buttery sweetness, hops come through as pineapple and light citrus. Some soapiness. Finish is bitter, earthy and citric. Aftertaste is a little sweeter, toffee and a lingering faint bitterness. Medium sticky body. Ethanol leaves a warming sensation.

I don't mind a little bit of soapy aroma or taste but there was a bit too much here.

Photo of Troyone
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy off copper color, on the lighter side, with a half" off white head and has some carb action.

I could smell the florals right when I opened the bottle. Sweet florals of pine and a carmel aroma.

There is a medium bitter grapefruit taste with a hint of English Tea and background of caramel malt.

The medium bodied mouthfeel has crisp carbonation with a very tolerable slight astringent finish.

This is brewed at a different place than their Brewpub. The IPA on tap at the Rubicon Brewpub is excellent and their flagship beer. I'm a Hophead so this is a session beer for me.

Photo of eelriverbrewfan
4.45/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hats off to my beer brother james for giving me this bottle as part of a birthday present package. This beer takes your tongue on an exploration to heaven and back again like dying and coming back to life. The subtelty of the finish is the best part...no bitter beer face

Photo of aforbes10
3.03/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at the Java Lounge in Sacramento. Pours a nice full amber-to-brown color with a thin white head. It's in a plastic cup, so i won't judge the poor head formation too harshly. Vague citrus hop odors and a hint of sweet malt on the nose. Big hoppy flavor on a sweet caramel malt base. Hops are again, this vague sort of citrus. Bitterness roars in towards the finish and sticks around for a while. Hint of something metallic like tin. Medium bodied. Bitterness is a bit overdone for my taste, but its a fine IPA, no huge complaints.

Photo of HalfFull
2.08/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A golden orange into a large wine glass I pour ye, with a half inch of off white head. Fair retention and lacing. Looks rather rich.

Orangey, buttery, sweet, bit skunky in fact on the nose. No hops in the house, how is this an IPA? This beer reminds me of Union Jack (in the bottle) but isn't as good. Is it possible the beer was just very old and the hops had broken down? Maybe, but I didn't get that impression. There were some cryptic markings but nothing I could interpret as for freshness.

Back to the smell. A rich sugary citrus oil odor emanates, not my favorite though apparently there are many fans. Similar to some Firestone offerings in that regard.

Taste follows with a buttery texture, rich and syrupy. Bitterness is cloaked on the finish as are hops on the nose by the sweetness.

Feel and Drink, yeah, OK.

This beer is like a dumb blonde to me. She's pretty and all but the reality comes hard and it comes fast. If you like the Cascade/Crystal combo with a rich buttery diacetyl flavor then I would consider this an average Pale Ale. Yet this is a strange one in the IPA world.

Photo of mattffrost
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into glass

Appearance Beer is a mostly clear amber/orange color. Head is whtie. Middle head dissolves quickly leaving outer head staying around outside of glass.

Smell Hoppy Citrus, Sweet Malt, earthy grass smells.

Taste Sweet up front, does not finish vey bitter. Not an abundance of hops. Nice citrus flavor, I would say a very mild American IPA. I have had better and worse, it's a good solid beer.

Mouthful Low carbonation, not really hoppy a nice mild American IPA.

Drinkablity Nice aroma and flavors makes this a nice mild American IPA nothing over the top.

Photo of xhcadamx
4.35/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - hazy orange with fluffy white head. The head was gone quickly but the lacing stuck around.

S - Piney Citric hops immediately. Some biscuity malt in the background.

T - Sweet tasty piney and citrusy hops with the biscuit malt. Nice toasted background. Bitter bite at the end.

M - Medium bodied that fits the beer well. Oily and slick from the hops but a dry aftertaste.

D - Perfect balance of everything I enjoy in an IPA.

Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - nice amber orange color with a solid white head
S - biscuit malts, citric hops and caramel.
T - a light biscuit / caramel base supports a solid bitter, citric / pine hop taste.
M - medium bodied, nicely carbonated, dry and medium hoppy
D - smooth dry finish and a medium hop bite makes this a good all around IPA.

Photo of magictrokini
3.93/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A pleasant surprise in an un-hyped, plain bottle. Pours orangy-gold with a frothy white head. Clean pine hop aroma, with some citrus, a la the west coast style. Great taste of grapefruit and oranges. Bit of bread in the back a is a slight resiny tang. Dry finish. Nice.

Photo of flexabull
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of BrewMonkey, thanks again!

I've had this a few times on draft, but never in a bottle, so here goes.

Beer pours a bright clear gold color with a nice big rocky white head.

Aromas are of fresh pine, hard candies, and resin. A pleasant beer to sip.

Taste is dry, kind of herbal, and with a real slight sweet and creamy malt backbone. Finish is crisp with a bit of mineral hop bitterness that lingers nicely.

Mouthfeel is pretty good. The carbonation is about right, and the beer has a decent full feel to it without being to heavy.

Drinkability is nice. This is a good solid IPA that is well worth trying, and I could easily see myself having more than one in a session. Good stuff.

Photo of katan
4.08/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber - no date but certainly aged in my cellar for sure

A - Pours a dark golden color. Head formation is quick and vigorous - light white in color. Dissipation is slow which leaves a light lacing and film on top. Haze is apparent from yeast (bottle conditioned?)

S - A quite hoppy nose - a combination of spice with earthy grapefruit. Floral in nature.

T - Starts off very balanced with a straight barely sweetness offset by bitterness and some noble hops tastes. Finishes with a floral hoppy note. The aftertaste is certainly quite bitter from the leftover alpha oils.

M - This beer has a solid body to it - very coating. Leaves much residue on the palette for solid "aftertaste". Carbonation is present but not overly biting.

D - Against the grain of the body and flavors, I find this beer not to be particularly filling. The ABV is higher than normal, but workable. Lastly, the hoppy flavors here are quite potent but not off the charts too far.

I feel disappointed that I let this one sit in the cellar that long. A quality beer that I would find in the same class as a racer 5 from Bear. In fact, since I can't get Bear, this is a great addition to my rotation.

Photo of MisterClean
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the source.

A - Hazy, golden orange, off-white head, dissipates moderately, and leaves random trails of lacing.

S - Malts with piny and grassy hops.

T - Citrus, pine, malts, and earthy hops.

M - Well-balanced, but bitter enough to remind you that it's an IPA.

D - Really good stuff. This is the go to beer at the Rubicon.

Photo of grub
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Viggo shared this one. thanks eric!

22oz bottle. sampled sept 28/08.

pours a nice clear orangey copper colour with a small fluffy white head. the head drops fast and leaves lots of lace.

aroma is good. light alcohol. white bread. touch of biscuit. orange. grapefruit. pine. bit of pineapple and mango too.

taste is nice. medium bitterness level. bread and biscuit. grapefruit and pine. light alcohol. hint of orange, but less citrus and tropical fruit than in the aroma. the alcohol warmth starts to spread fairly fast.

mouthfeel is good. medium body. medium carbonation level. nice drying finish from the hops.

drinkability is good. nice balance. this bottle seems to be a little past its prime, with the taste and overall character suffering a little. i bet this one would have been great fresh. will have to keep a look out for another bottle.

Photo of Viggo
3.53/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up this 22 oz at a Bevmo in San Francisco.

Pours a hazy golden copper, nice thick white head forms, drops a ton of lace on the glass, good retention, looks like a solid IPA. Smell is okay, citrus and grapefruit, some caramel, light pine, bit of brown sugar, lightly fruity, a bit subdued which makes me believe this bottle isn't as fresh as it should be, but the aroma is decent. Taste is sweet and malty, caramel, some orange, grapefruit and tangerine, a bit sugary, herbal bitterness in the finish, quite balanced. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Standard IPA, would like to try this fresher because I would think it has some potential.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.93/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

What should really be said here? Rubicon's IPA is a very straightforward amber-colored American style IPA. It has an aroma of citrusy Cascade hops combined with softly sweet biscuity and caramelish malts. The flavor is basically the same with some more pine-like hop character (it's a bit floral as well). It's solidly bittered but balanced. If anything, it could be a bit more refined (the bitterness does tend to stick at the back of the throat), but as it is, it's still far more in-check than many of the examples on the market today. A straightforward, balanced, and drinkable American IPA.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
2.08/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a dark burnished orange-gold with a rocky head of meringue-fluff off-white foam. Lots of tiny carbonation bubbles around the edges. Not much lacing.

Piney hop resin character on the nose, with a very unpleasant undertone of diacetyl. Yuck! Menthol and citrus are there, but the sickly sweet butterscotch character burrowing underneath just puts me off. Blech!

Taste is unfortunately rather similar. Really unpleasant caramel sweetness infiltrates what is otherwise a clean hoppy IPA bitterness. Truly, the sweet character in this is unwelcome, and hopefully unintentional. Mouthfeel is ok, light sparkling character, good for an IPA, but it doesn't have much to work with here.

Too much sweetness, and even if the hops do try to cover it, they don't succeed, and it tastes like there's something fundamentally wrong here.

Did I get a bad bottle? Is this a bad batch? Or is it just a bad beer? Well, with so many other beers to try, and much better IPAs out there, I'd be wary of even giving this one a second chance. Sorry, Rubicon IPA, you blew it in my book.

Photo of GJ40
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I bought a 22oz bottle at Bev Mo while in the SF area and took it home with me.

A - A lighter golden color with good clarity. A thick, creamy off white head. Some lacing.

S - Very nice floral hop aroma. As good as it gets for a bottled beer.

T - Nice hop presence with a good grapefruit taste (just as I like it). It echoes in your tastebuds long after you've swallowed it. It's a bit on the sweet side though.

M - Nice low carbonation with a good body.

D - This is very much my style and it's very easy to drink. It may be a bit on the sweet side but I really enjoyed this beer.

Photo of beerbrewerdan
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Somewhat cloudy copper orange. The bartendress suggested the beer was unfiltered. Very nice grass and citrus nose. Flavor hits with hops. Bitterness is subdued and the malt is present though slightly drying at the end. Could drink a lot of this. Short review for a very good beer.

Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Deep golden amber with a slight haze. Thin white head that sticks around and leaves nice lace.

S-Rich perfume like citrus twinged hops. Nice amount of sweet caramel following.

T-Another malt/hop battle....with hops just pulling it out. Good citrus kick with a tangy acidic background.

M-Medium body, tangy with a good lingering bitterness.

D-A nice citrus tangy, malt balanced IPA. This isn't quite west coast to me but it gets close. Easy quaffable in large amounts.

Photo of ffejherb
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. bomber into 12oz. glass. Thanks to Deuane for sharing.

A - Hazy burnt orange body with slim white head that retained quite well and seemed to swell up with each swirl of the glass and left some sparse lacing. Minimal bubbles of carbonation.

S - Perfumy aroma with sweet floral hops and some peppery spiciness as well. Malt is primarily caramel with a mild burnt quality and some sweet syrupy qualities.

T - Starts off on the hoppy side with a perfumy hop profile and some floral attributes, then quickly melds into more malty territory with hints of burnt caramel and a mild toasted grain character. There's also some bitter citrus rind in the finish.

M - Medium body with a smooth, creamy texture and moderate carbonation. There's also a bit of alcohol warmth on the palate. Finish is mildly metallic and moderately bitter on the tongue.

D - Good IPA with more of a floral/perfumy character. While I prefer IPAs with citrus and piney hop profiles, I found this to be quite drinkable and balanced. Overall, this is a solid brew.

IPA from Rubicon Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 174 ratings.