Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine?

Learn more about beer and save over 53% with a 3-year subscription.

Subscribe now →

Michigan Brewing High Seas India Pale Ale - Michigan Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Michigan Brewing High Seas India Pale AleMichigan Brewing High Seas India Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

168 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 168
Hads: 202
Avg: 3.76
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 3
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Michigan Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-19-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 168 | Hads: 202
Photo of Spiekerbox
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pale amber-golden color that pours with a thick beige head that lingers and leaves lacing.

S- Like you would expect from an IPA, hops are the dominate scent. The hops are floral scent and there is a light malty backbone on the nose.

T- Strong hoppy flavor, not all that much citrus or pine hops, more of an herbal, floral hop mix. Sweet malts come out in the middle before the bitterness takes over at the finish.

M- Medium body with a good amount of carbonation, creamy and sticky on the finish that keeps the flavor around for a long time.

D- The best MBC beer that I have had so far, pretty drinkable and I would be able to classify this as a session IPA. Quite bitter compared to many of the normal IPAs that you find, would definitely consider ordering this if I saw it on tap.

 790 characters

Photo of buschbeer
4.07/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured into a pint glass to two inches of off white head. The beer is orange/amber in color. The aroma is citrus hops. The taste is just the same with a nice hops finish. It's not real bitter, which is how I like my IPA's. This is a fine example of a midwest IPA.

 265 characters

Photo of BeerAndBourbon
3.22/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A. Amber with small globs of yeast floating throughout. The white head pours small and dies quickly leaving bits of sticky residual lacing.

S. Bread, yeast, some citrus hops, a bit of caramel

T. Quite bitter upfront with citrus and earthy bite. The malt finally makes an appearance in the tail end, but never quite balances the bitterness. The alcohol makes an appearance on swallow as well.

M. Medium bodied with a high level of carbonation.

D. A good IPA, but there are better ones that are more easily obtained in Southern Ohio.

 535 characters

Photo of morimech
4.08/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Best by 8/10/10. Has been in my fridge for a couple of weeks.

Pours a hazy amber color with a very large head that billows over the lip of the glass. The head slowly settles to a thick cap. Heavy lacing is left on the glass. Pleasant aroma of citrus hops and pale and caramel malt. Not the strongest aroma but it is good. Middle-of-the-road as far as bitterness flavor goes, but I was surprised by the alcohol warmth in the finish. I see the ABV is getting up there in DIPA range. The hops give a good dose of citrus. There is enough malt to carry the hops and makes this beer more than one dimensional. The body is a little larger than most IPAs. The carbonation is enough to add some pep to the beer while maintaining a soft texture. A very good balance. A good drinker that is only hindered by the high ABV. If I had regular access to this beer, I would see it in my fridge regularly.

 888 characters

Photo of deereless
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Huge head on an easy pour, head retention is decent and drops to a craggy mass of foam leaving some sticky spots all along the interior of the glass, color is medium gold with a dark carroty tone - 4.00, S: The nose has a faint hop aroma of delicate citrus, there is some orange and some bubble gum, very nice nose but a touch on the side of meek for an American IPA - 3.50, M: Sweet caramelly malt flavors balanced with a medium hop bite, hint of pine and possibly some tangerine, like the nose the palate is quite nice but timid - 3.50, M: Medium bodied with mild slickness - 4.00, D: A very drinkable beer, a touch on the tame side in terms of hops but based on other reviews - I may have an old bottle since most people were impressed with all the hops - it sure would be nice to have a bottling date, regardless High Seas IPA was a solid beer - 4.00

 857 characters

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

Pours a clear copper color with a huge, frothy light tan head. Head falls very slow. Big sticky lace.

Aroma is mostly of a nice floral hop. But of caramel malts in the background but mostly hop.

Nice mild hop taste. Flowery. Bit of sweetness in the background. Ends bitter.

Medium bodied in the mouth with rather simple carbonation.

Nice, easy drinking beer. Worked well at a park drinking it right from the bottle while staring at Lake Michigan.

 454 characters

Photo of Mora2000
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma is a mixture of various hop characteristics including floral and citrus along with some caramel malt and bready malt. The flavor starts off with piney and resiny hops but I also get some floral and citrus notes. The caramel malt backbone keeps the bitterness pretty low. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. I was surprised by how nice this beer was.

 414 characters

Photo of nickadams2
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P_Pours dark orange with a thick sticky white head that dissipates to a thick ring with nice lacing.

S_Piny hops and citrus.

T_Strong hops and pine up front. Slight citrus and floral coming through. Malt backbone give this a nice bisquity finish.

M_Thick,sticky,dry finish.


Impressed by this offering from MBC.

 324 characters

Photo of salvo
2.73/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip glass: poured cloudy brown-orange with an inch of fine-bubbled head that dissipated to slight lacing and a ring that hangs around the glass. Citrus smell stronger than the malt, and a pretty pronounced alcohol nose. First sip is bitter - almost harsh - and the bitter after-taste is a bit tinny-metalic.

Waiting a moment for the beer to warm slightly.

As the beer warms, the taste starts a bit sour and the bitterness is more pronounced, and the metallic taste is still there, although joined by a little additional malt back. The beer is a bit gassy, but this is consistent with previous bottles (i.e., it's not an over-nitroed or CO2ed bottle). At 7.2%, it's not a session. I want to try one on tap for comparison.

 738 characters

Photo of RickS95
3.17/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bronze color with a thick, cloudy white head.

Smells sweet and citrusy; nice head retention. The citrus notes remind me of pineapple.

No taste dominates, it just tastes like flowers and tree bark.

Has the typical feel of an IPA, a bitter finish, but the citrus cuts into the bitterness.

As it warms, I can smell orange and/or tangerine.

I'm not a huge IPA fan, but I give this an average score because of the sweetness from the citrus.

 441 characters

Photo of divineaudio
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz into a tulip.

appearance is good with a thick, rocky 2 finger head that hangs around for a while. color is a deep rich amber. got a bit of sticky lace in this glass.

smell is sweet malts with floral hops and a bit of citrus.

taste is somewhat subdued compared to the smell, was expecting richer flavors. i'm getting mostly pale malts with some grassy and herbal notes. bitterness takes a minute to kick in but hangs on the tongue for a while after. not a whole lot going on here, but seems well balanced.

medium bodied with higher co2 content, but not fizzy or prickly feeling.

if the abv were lower i'd say this would be a great session ipa. as it stands, a solid example of the style and worthy of your hard earned dollars, especially on a hot summer day.

 768 characters

Photo of zeff80
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, light golden color with a small, white head of fizzy foam. It left minimal lacing.

S - It has a strong citrus aroma - mostly orange, with a nice caramel smell.

T - Good burnt toast and caramel malt flavors supported by a spicy bitterness with a touch of orange.

M - It was crisp, sharp and pretty dry. A light to medium bodied IPA.

D - This is a really nice IPA. Great balance and and easily be sessionable.

 435 characters

Photo of dbossman
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Brown/tea colored with a beige thin head; lacing is steady

S: A subtle but pleasant citrusy hop presence; a dull earthy pine quality as well; the bready malt backbone holds it together

T: A nicely balanced malt and hop presence; lemon and tea leaves persist at the back; there is a chemical-chlorine-quality permeating as well

F: A bit thin as it runs down the throat; carbonation seems slightly off as well

D: A pretty decent IPA all around

 448 characters

Photo of Haybeerman
3.63/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Orange-amber color. Poured a 1 finger off-white head with good retention. Laced in broken rings.

S: Prominent floral hops; plenty of citrus, pine and grapefruit. Bready malt backbone was eveindent.

T: Hop flavors a bit more muted than in the nose, but consistent. A little redsiny in the middle. Sharp bitter and mild spices bring into balance in the finish.

M: Medium body. Medium carbonation. A little resiny.

D: Great looking beer with great nose. Loses a bit in the flavor.

 484 characters

Photo of metter98
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: It poured clear amber in color,
S: There is a light aroma of citrusy and piney hops.
T: Hop flavors stand out in the overall taste, but are nicely balanced by the underlying malts. There is a bit of bitterness in the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and smooth.
D: The beer is relatively easy to drink and the flavor is interesting enough to make me want to have another of these.

 398 characters

Photo of roddwolff
4.52/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Once served in my bayern mug. Look: Orange color, many sediments, creamy foamy head with a finger thick, good durability and lacing. Smell: Fruity and perfumed with floral hops, peach and bubble gum, such as yogurt hop. Taste: Lots of floral hops, earth hops, roots and peach juice, like the smell but with more hop character. Mouthfeel: Dry and fruity, extra bitter with high carbonation and robust body. Drinkability: Excellent IPA.

 434 characters

Photo of BuckyFresh
3.47/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a large wine glass. The beer has a light haze to it and is golden in color, with maybe a touch of amber. There is an off-white, one-finger head that recedes pretty quickly. The head leaves behind a pretty even ring of lacing on the glass. Moderate carbonation rises up from the bottom.

Smell: Pretty nice smell to this one, with the typical citrus and pine notes indicative of the variety. The hop aroma is perhaps a little deeper than other IPAs; it has a spicy quality to it, and the citrus character is a little less bitter. I'm picking up a bit of sweetness, but the malt presence is not very pronounced.

Taste: The flavor falls a bit short of my expectations. There is significant bitterness, but little in the way of decent hop flavor or malt presence. The body is also a bit watery and adds to the perception of unbalance. The taste just isn't that complex; in fact, it seems pretty much one-dimensional. The bitterness seems to hang on into the aftertaste a bit and flirts with being a little astringent. Maybe it's just personal preference, but with bitterness like this, I would prefer more of a malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and a touch watery. I could have used more punch here. The carbonation was adequate and the bitterness, although pronounced, wasn't unbearable.

Drinkability: Due to the balance issues, I'm not sure how many of these I could tolerate. It's one of those beers that seems to get more astringent as you drink on. All in all, I give it fair drinkability marks though.

 1,555 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.81/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber color with a massiv head that sheets the pint glass as if it were a Belgian

Smell: While there are some nice citrusy hop elements to the aroma, there are also plenty of sweet and fruity maltsas well as a less appealing vegetal aspect to the malts that verges on DMS

Taste: The graham cracker and toffee malts provide a pathway for the citrusy and piney hops to walk right over, which they do through mid-palate and after the swallow; lots of fruit character to join with the sweeter malts, as well, but the aftertaste adds an odd, medicinal dimension, as if there had been some angostura bitters mixed into the wort

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Very drinkable and the beer works, unless you try to deconstruct it into its elements, in which case some less appealing aspects intrude

Thanks, wagenvolks, for the opportunity

 901 characters

Photo of jahilgen
3.27/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A local brewer in my area with series of good, high quality beers.

Poured into a imperial pint glass where it devleoped a dark orange hue compared to other APA, left a two finger head some lacing.

The beer smell terrific strong hops and malts right off the top with hints of citrus and complex spices (which my novice nose cannot identify). Once poured I was excited to see how the presentation would continue.

However the taste and mouthfeel did not match the expectations from the presentation. The hops and malt were present and enjoyable, but the rich cirtus and spices I expected did not transfer to my palate. I seemed to lose the complexity the presentation offered. After a few drinks the only thing I could recognize was the hops and malts.

Still the beer was enjoyable but did not impress me over other pale ales. A good beer for anyone who enjoys pales ales but nothing unique or spectacular.

 907 characters

Photo of CHickman
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Came with the Beer of The Month Club. Pours a hazy light orange gold in color with a 1 inch off white foamy/creamy head, that stayed around for a few minutes. Decent lacing sticks to the glass as it goes down. Strong hops up front on the nose, with both floral and piney hops, followed by the smell of potent citrus like lemon, orange peel and grapefruit, flowers, caramel and grains or yeast. A very nice floral hop aroma leads the generally inviting odor, which leans towards the sweet side.

Tastes of sweet malt to start, then the caramel and bitter hop attack begins, with floral and piney hops, lemon, grapefruit, grains, yeast, pine, and then a wave of grainy malt that leaves a spicy and bitter end when combined with the hops. After my second beer it seems that the hops dominate the nose and cause the bitter finish, but the malts play as much a part of the flavor as the hops do. The citrus and grainy flavors bridge the gap between the malt and hops, but this beer seems unbalanced as so many tastes come through that there is a sensation overload, even though there are not a lot of ingredients in the mix. The one thing that the sensation overload does well is hide the ABV, which is not apparent at all. The mouthfeel is light and crisp and creamy on the tongue, but the overall beer is medium bodied, yet still seems to go down easy with a crisp lager like ease.

Each time I lift the glass I get the hop odor, but the malt, citrus and grain taste that follow make this kind of perplexing in its creation. I found this beer to be very drinkable, and while it was bitter it still has good flavor, but it just seemed like an IPA with too much malt in it. I'm glad I tried it, but it's average compared to most other IPA's.

 1,738 characters

Photo of crhensel
3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(12 oz bottle into pint glass) Pours a beautiful clear orange with a one finger heat that falls slowly, leaving a beautiful lacing on the glass. Aroma hits you with the hops, as well as a little bit of earthy grass and pine. You know you are in for a treat here! Taste is very bold with the hops as the star, a nice sharp bitterness that plays nicely with a little bit of the pine, giving an added layer of complexity that sets this apart from some other IPAs I have tried. Finishes rather bold, and the taste sticks with you or a while, making for a very pleasant drink.

 571 characters

Photo of jzeilinger
3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque yellowish orange color with a massive three finger billowing white rocky head of foam that almost spilled over the sides of the glass, no carbonation at all. Within five minutes the foam subsides to a rocky one finger head and stays that way.

Smells predominantly of fresh pine with some citrus notes and very mild hints of malt and some lemon.

Taste is mildly malty, a little spiciness underneath as a backbone and then a wallop of bitter piney grapefruit bite that hangs on the tongue and stubbornly stays there for a long linger that doesn't want to let go. I'm not tasting the malt character in this that others have mentioned.

The texture is a little watery, I would really love for this to have more body to it, is really smooth.

I do have to say though, the 7.2% ABV blows me away because it is completely hidden in this beer. For those who drink this beer and wasn't aware of that, it will creep up really fast. Kudos to the brewer for masking that. Again, would liek to see more body to this IPA, I do like the hoppiness.

 1,052 characters

Photo of bonkers
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured from a 12 ounce bottle into my SA perfect pint glass. It is amber to gold in color with a very sticky, rock hard white head. The aroma is a little lacking, some pine. The flavor has much more hop character than the nose. Upfront there is a nice fruity citrus bite that mellows to a lingering bitter finish. The beer is well balanced and medium in body. An overall solid brew.

 384 characters

Photo of claminat420
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- poured a dark copper color. solid white two finger head. medium lacing.

S- orange citrusy and spicy hops. you can notice the malt just slightly.

T- alcohol is very well hidden. the malt pulls through more on the taste than the smell.

M- medium bodied. good carbonation.

D- could work on a six no prob.

Overall- not to shabby of an ipa. reminds me more of an english style with the malt character. much better michigan ipa's out there but still a thumbs up in my book.

 475 characters

Photo of OneDropSoup
3.49/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Got this one in a December BotM club shipment.

Pours into a pint glass a rusty orange body with 3 fingers of souffle head, that drops to 1 finger & leaves heavy lacing. Translucent but cloudy.

Great IPA smell of citrus zest, a fresh, resiny hop smell, like concentrated pellets. Maybe some lemon cake? (flour-like, with lemon & sugar). Later on a strong grape fruit presence emerges. Nice!

Taste is orange at 1st, with some grapefruit sourness with sugar, then orange zest, piney. Bitter green/leafy flavors with some citric acidity, slight wheat-like sweetness develops in the smell & taste. Plenty there but nothing special.

Mouthfeel is active, foamy & prickly at the same time. Full-bodied, makes a big impact on the palate.

Drinkability & overall: Eh, not bad, but not worth the drag on the palate. Maybe this one suffers from where I am in my own personal "beer journey," but I'm getting a little tired of IPA that smell great & fragrant & then assault you with aggressive, tongue-battering bitterness. I know that's the name of the game, but I don't want to be punished every time.

 1,094 characters

Michigan Brewing High Seas India Pale Ale from Michigan Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 168 ratings.