Apex - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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940 Ratings

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Ratings: 940
Reviews: 257
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 8.02%
Wants: 68
Gots: 99 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.25% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-22-2005

Apex: The highest point, the culmination or climax. In racing, the apex of the turn is approached differently as conditions dictate, but always with a forward looking mindset. This beer is the culmination of years of brewing and drinking hop forward IPAs. We reserve the right to move forward to the next Apex.

2009 California State Fair - SILVER
2009 The Bistro Double IPA Fest – BRONZE & PEOPLE’S CHOICE
2009 Night of the Living Ales Cask Festival – 3rd PLACE & PEOPLE’S CHOICE
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 940 | Reviews: 257
Photo of RickS95
4.72/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

It's the look you'd want your IPA to have. A cloudy orange pour with some darker brown notes mixed in because of the haze. The head is a stunner with it's bright white color and meringue-like peaks. Starts off a finger and a half thick, retains well, and leaves a bit of lacing behind.

You can smell the citrus the second you pop the cap. Grapefruit, pineapple, and orange rind fill the room. In the background, dank pine lurks. Amazing.

Hop forward, as you might guess. Like the smell, you get more citrus than pine, and I welcome that. The pineapple helps take this beer to the top. Whatever malts are used are completely an afterthought, because the west coast hops rule here.

As smooth as any IPA I've ever had, and that goes for Pliny . Yes, smooth. Bitter, but not a palate wrecker. Sweet and tangy up front from the citrus notes, then the bitterness starts to evolve. So easy to drink despite high ABV. Full bodied.

I may be being too harsh, this could be a 5. It really is world class and is easily as good a beer as anyone will ever have.

Photo of M_C_Hampton
4.51/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass, orange amber colored with a large white head that dissipates quickly leaving some lacing, hazy

S: grapefruit and citrus, slight pine, fruity

T: heavy on fruitty hops up front, orange and pineapple, floral hops, excellent sweet malt flavor blends with grapefruit peel and pine, finish is bitter and lasting

M: thick and sticky with good carbonation

O: my new favorite bear republic beer

Photo of BMMillsy
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bomber from Gator Beverage. Pours beautiful clear orange gold with a big fluffy slightly off white head. Lots of citrus on the aroma, mango, orange peel, grapefruit zest, pineapple, with sweetness in the backdrop from the malts. Flavor is mango grapefruit up front with a surprising punch of rich fruity caramel malts throughout. Big body, resinous, with medium prickle on the carbonation. Nearly syrupy and I was hoping for a brighter hop profile with a more subdued malt backbone. Nonetheless this is yummy.

Photo of VTEno17
4.76/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: a lighter caramel color, fairly hazy. S: very floral and pine T: grapefruit citrus but also sweet, not too bitter but not to sweet syrupy M: Perfection, not light and crisp but not thick and syrupy either. Nice carbonation and bitterness that leaves your mouth fresh and ready for the next taste. O: Awesome, I love racer 5 but this is even better. This is what racer x should have been. Pretty close to heady topper even! Will always pick this up when I see it.

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle opened on 2.26.14

A - Pours a clear, light orange with a small cream-colored head with good retention.

S - Very citrus strong - orange, some pine. Very nice.

T - Citrus, pine, melon, grass. A touch bitter, but very juicy.

D - A light body with good carbonation.

O - Very citrusy and juicy. NIce grassy bitterness.

Photo of Jadjunk
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

"Apex: The highest point, the culmination or climax. In racing, the apex of the turn is approached differently as conditions dictate, but always with a forward looking mindset. This beer is the culmination of years of brewing and drinking hop forward IPAs. We reserved the right to move forward, to advance the style to the next Apex." Brewed in the style of an American Imperial IPA. Available as a late winter seasonal in 22 oz. bottles and on draft.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a tulip glass. Served above 53º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a frothy cream head of a pastel white color over a moderately hazy copper-orange body with fine sediment. Retention is very good and lacing is medium-thick and spotty. 4.75

(Smell) Biscuity grain malt, pale caramel sweetness and a dash of light bready rye for a touch of depth and body. Big bold aromas of juicy grapefruit, bright citrus zest and peppery hops build a strong hop profile with a moderate bitterness. Overall a very aromatic and bright aroma with a ton of enjoyable character. Potency is medium-high. 4.25

(Taste) The malt profile keeps fairly thin, with a lightly toasted caramel malt, a pinch of biscuity grain and a fairly mellow, if not understated sweetness. The hop profile holds up fairly well- strong citrus and peppery hop notes are the most prolific, whereas the zesty grapefruit takes a backseat. The hop bitterness is fairly accessible, likely mild for the seasoned DIPA drinker but fairly striking overall. The beer finishes dry with pithy grapefruit rind and an assertive bitterness. While the flavors aren't as impressively complex as the aroma predicted, the end result is still fantastic. 4

(Mouthfeel) The texture is light, thinly syrupy and clean. Carbonation contributes to a mild frothiness, lightening up the body a notch but not making anything alarmingly crisp. Body is light/medium for the style, medium+ overall. Balance is moderately bitter over sweet with a pronounced cleanliness and no off-characters. Alcohol presence is low. 4.5

(Overall) Bear Republic is one of my choice representatives of well-constructed, affordable and flavorful west coast IPAs. Although Apex doesn't quite hit the hop and bitterness highs of more hyped DIPAs, it is an excellent beer in its own. Not all that far from Racer 5 IPA, perhaps turned up a notch or two in flavor and intensity, it finds an excellent niche between the demands for flavor, bitterness and drinkability. Definitely worth a try. 4.5

Bear Republic Brewing's
Apex Special IPA

Photo of Ilovelampandbeer
4.39/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

best by 6/5/14-bomber

appearance is flawless...such nice amber color with a finger wide off-white head

smell is very good-typical west coast tropical forward ipa that also a funky flower note to it

taste is pretty dank...heavy on the mango and citrus with heavy hop afterburn

mothfeel is just about where i like it..vey full and chewy feel

overall i was very impressed by this brew...high quality west coast ipa and i imagine trying this more fresh would ease this into enjoy by category

Photo of CHADMC3
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a bright, vibrant orange body with golden hues beneath the pure white head which is very patient to dissipate leaving a consistent, sticky ring of lacing.

Plenty of citrus hops greet the nose. Orange, mango, tangerine - think very sweet fruits with orangy flesh. There is some bready malt there as it warms but this is fairly subtle. Some piney wood notes also sneak in there.

The citrus hops really coat the palate, again offering generous orange, mango, maybe a touch peachy as well. The bready malt is a little more up front on the taste as well. And I think I'm getting just a hint of flower petals. The fresh citrus certainly runs the show.

Medium to fuller in body with a fair amount of carbonation and a clean hoppy finish.

A great brew with a unique quality to the citrus hops which in my opinion tend to fall on the sweeter side. I hope I can catch this one again down the road.

Photo of Jimmys
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

bomber into tulip. best by 06/09/14.

A: a bright orange/golden hue. frothy white head. good retention. fantastic lacing.

S: really bright and citrus filled. very inviting. smells like the hop bomb while pouring out of the bottle. very American.

T: a lot of citrus. a lot. then it moves to a round orange flavor. a little bit of grainy soft flavor. a little bit of booze. really quite minimal though. bitterness lingers into the finish, but similar to the booze level, rather minimal.

M: ample carb on a medium/full bodied brew.

D: pretty tasty stuff. very drinkable. could do this one everyday with ease.

Photo of cjgiant
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle dated 1/29/2015:
Pours a cloudy orange-tinged yellow, hazy towards cloudy, Head is nice fluffy white, adding lacing. Nose is melon, some tropic notes, and some citrus notes. Standard or straightforward, yes, but nice.

Taste follows the "standard" as well, west coast style. Combination of tropical and citrus notes, tending towards grapefruit as the taste fades. Grapefruit rind dryness in the end. Feel is medium with light carbonation, body is maybe a tad towards fuller side of medium, at least based on how I am feeling today.

I had given this a straight 4.25 before. And I looked to find something to deviate from that, but I couldn't find anything. A rare across the board rating.

Photo of scotorum
4.21/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Best by 5/29/14. Another line reads "166 G 1429 2013" (sic? supposed to be 1229?) Probably approaching four months old at this point. Not good, only bought recently at the biggest and most popular store in my area, arguably the biggest in New England.

Poured from the 22 oz. bomber into a Tree House snifter.

a: Nearly clear dark gold wiht a finger thick white head which receded to fairly even surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Intense citrus. Also some floral notes.

t: Bitter orange peel. Different and nice. Bitterness builds on the sides of the tongue. Bitter finish. Some throat burn also builds from the high c.9% ABV, but is otherwise well concealed.

m: Medium to full, very good body.

o: Excellent DIPA, tastes like I am chewing an orange peel, but refreshing too. First DIPA I can recall tasting this orangy. Me likey.

Photo of dar482
4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer comes in a hazy dark amber orange.

The aroma is pungent pineapple, peaches, mango, sweet orange with some honey and bready sweetness and a resinous pine and onion and garlic in the back.

The flavor follows with less obvious fruits, but again, of orange peel, grapefruit, pineapple, floral, and a bit of onion and garlic in there as well. A medium plus sweetness, but the beer dries off very well with this beautifully clean mouthfeel.

The mouthfeel for me is the highlight as the beer is very drinkable and cleans off nicely despite the bready malt and sweetness. Lots of hop juice that attacks at your teeth.

Photo of KornWallace
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Date: 4/9/14
Location: City Swiggers
Glassware: Tulip
Appearance: Amber in color with a large white head. Loads of carbonation and nice cascading.
Aromatics: Loads of fruit and hops. The fruit comes off as mango, pineapple, tangerine. The hops play as well resins then spice.
Flavor: The flavor starts with fruit-mango, pineapple. Then moves into the hops still floral then resinous and finally peppered. And boy does that pepper hit at the end.
Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is actually heavier then I expected. Really chewy and resinous.

Photo of ocelot2500
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper color with a tight, off-white head that leaves little bits of lacing.

Smells of caramel malt and some bright citrus.

Tastes of the sweet malts with a fruity hop character. Malts lead off with caramel and syrupy sweet notes. Hops come through and add some fruit with citrus and some tropical notes as well. Hops continue leading to spicy and pine notes. Finishes with a slight lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a nice DIPA, and I am glad they decided to bottle it.

Photo of BeerHo
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this beer first in a bomber and loved it! Then found it on tap at Canal Street, Reading, PA and really fell in love with it! Underrated IPA! Beautiful golden color. Heavy ripe citrus hops greet you instantly with lingering grapefruit, honey and lemon on the palate. Mildly piney with a good malt structure but by no means bready. Nice thick head with sticky lacing. The carbonation is on point! Great mouthfeel! The high ABV is well concealed within its balanced flavors! Great job Bear Republic on producing a world class IPA! I'm trying to find something wrong with this beer but can't! I'm on my 3rd glass which I typically don't do so that says it all! Cheers!!!

Photo of GilGarp
4.21/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bomber served cold into a goblet.

Apex is a slightly hazy amber color with thick white head. It has good retention and leaves some sticky lace.

Aroma is super hoppy and fresh. Lots of great citrus, especially grapefruit, with some pine in the background.

Flavor is also very hop-forward, as expected, but like many Bear Republic IPAs and DIPAs, it has some balance too. Some honey-like sweetness up front leads to a big hop bitterness that lasts from middle to end.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated.

Overall another awesome hoppy ale from BR.

Photo of vfgccp
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best buy May 2014. Opened April 2014.

A - Wow. This is what a DIPA should look like. Huge, glowing white head with great retention and nice lace. Beautiful, deep apricot golden wheat body.

S - Bright. A little green with nice west coast citrus and bitter herbs.

T - Sweet and malt forward for the style. Caramel, pumpernickel bread, and lightly toasted malt. Deep, earthy, plant-stem bitter backend. Touch of lemon, lime and orange zest around the edges.

M - Full frame, especially for the style. Thick body. Par carbonation.

O - The bitterness builds on your palate throughout the drink and balances the upfront sweetness. By the end of the pint the beer drinks beautifully. The big body makes it incredibly filling for an IPA.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look I've always had a love affair with the Bear Republic brews, especially Racer 5 when this came out as a tap only offering I've always hoped it would hit the bottles. The patience has paid off...west coast IPA in my glass. Ohio is definitely competing with this IPAs just within the Midwest now we have beers like 3F Permanent Funeral, Great Lakes Chillwave, Fathead's Hop Juju...yet this still has a unique west coast style use of the hops.

Drinking it out of a Petaluma Lagunitas mason jar that's bad ass. This bigger IPA sits a glowing orange copper in the glass with a slightly off white head, forms thick and cloudy textured fine even layered lacing lines the sides of the glass.

Aromatics deep fruit upfront...citrus, pineapple, passion fruit combo starts to bite with a bit of grapefruit peel if I have to pick a citrus fruit, along with dank fruity hop notes. Barely able to write home about the pale malts that basically let the hops shine, let's call it biscuit malt breadiness.

Flavors demand your attention in your face bitterness let's up a bit to let the tropical fruit notes arise ripened mangoes, citric pith again (grapefruit) bitterness of the zesty rind, numbs your tongue for just a second with hop oil bitterness and yet ends in a gentle wave of bready malts...really nice complexity aggression and balance all in one sip like a crashing wave of hop bitterness that settles out enough to enjoy some calm water between sets of awesome 7 to 10 foot waves meant to be ridden.

Mouthfeel is where the beer shines the resinous hop oils let you truly experience all of the hop flavors perfect natural flowing healthy carbonation without tickling your nares, you may experience the best hop burps ever off of this brew. Medium bodied, oily slick texture, chunks of hops floating in suspension like chemical nature of high school chemistry described.

These brewers were paying attention at some point in their education and because of their location and distance to the hop growing regions of California and the PNW, I'm guessing they have a healthy respect for marijuana as well. I don't partake, but this is definitely a first cousin with all of the Humulus Lupulin flowing. Overall, my love affair has been rekindled...amazing beer...definitely an Apex for them as a brewery for sure.

Photo of twiggamortis420
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle pours a nicely clear light gold color with a decent cap of white head. Sticky lace...not a whole lot for retention though.

Nose is sugared grapefruit. That is all. Fin. das Ende. Final. Akhir. Konec.

Taste is pretty much the same, with a sharp grain tang to go along with the hoppy flavors that flow from flavoring to bitterness with ease. There is so much greatness about the flow of this beer and the way everything is integrated that must be noted. The ABV is is so well masked. I love this beer, BR has some talented brewers for sure, its nice to see some mew(ish) stuff from them.

Photo of Flounder57
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle was poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a two finger head that reduced to a small layer. It is a pale orange with bubbles coming up through the whole glass. Nice nice lacing down the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Floral, pungent, tangerine, grapefruit, caramel, toasted, orange candy, pine, mango, pineapple, and resiny.

Taste: Awesome double. Hop characteristics are blended well together and there is mild tingly bitterness in the rear

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium bodied, medium carbonation, a little chewy, and mild tingly bitterness.

Overall: I like where this series is going. First Cafe Racer 15, now this. Bring it on Bear Republic.

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.11/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A-Pours a bright, clear orange. An aggressive pour brings about a thick, chunky, off white head. Splotchy lacing.

S-Obviously very hoppy. Apricots and candied oranges. Grapefruits and peaches. Caramel and bready malt.

T-Actually pretty balanced but still clearly very hoppy. I think apricot and candied orange and grapefruits are the best way to describe the flavor. A bit of green onions. Finishes with a bready and caramelly maltiness then a big wave of very bitter pine. It becomes sweeter over time.

M-Fuller bodied. High bitterness. Alcohol is evident. Softer carbonation.

O/D-Bear Republic is very good at brewing up hoppy treats. Apex is a beer that is far above average. I would pick a few more from bear Rpublic before I would choose this one but that's far from a jab at this beer. I would pick Bear Republic beers over most breweries flat out.

Photo of kojevergas
3.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

"Apex Special IPA." 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with generally appealing label and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired at a local bottle shop and served into a squeaky clean Pinthouse Pizza conical pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are quite high given the brewery - which is amongst the best in California in my opinion. "8.95%" ABV. Reviewed live. Reviewed as an IPA for obvious reasons.

Served cold - at fridge temp. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a 2.5 finger wide head of white colour. Nice even consistency and smooth soft complexion. Good creaminess and thickness. Nice even lacuing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is great for the high ABV - about 9-10 minutes.

Body colour is a clear translucent copper of above average vibrance and excellent clarity. Appears well-carbonated. It's a clean appearance; there's no visible yeast sediment or anything.

Overall, it's a good looking beer and fits neatly inside style conventions, plus it boasts an impressive head. I'm excited to try it, but in fairness it's not a unique or special appearance for an IPA. There are many beers that look just like this does.

Sm: I dig the fruit - peaches, apricot, and tangerine. It could be fresher and juicier, but the fruitiness is nice overall. It's also got some nice floral hop character, some mild resins, and a kiss of pine. Though it boasts some impressive and diverse hop character, the hop bitterness is well balanced by malty undertones - caramalt, sweet pale malts, and clean barley.

No yeast character, alcohol, or off-notes are detectable. It's not the dry, arid, stale aroma of many bad IPAs.

It's a clean, pleasant aroma of moderate strength. Soft. Aromatic.

T: It's got a lovely hop profile - that much is immediately obvious. Soft fruity tones of pleasant peach, apricot, and tangerine. Floral hop character. There's some citrusy zest on the finish which unfortunately flirts with the stale orange juice character I always hate in IPAs; luckily this is pretty tame. Onion/garlic. Lime.

It's got a bit too much caramalt and pale malt sweetness in general, but luckily this sweetness covers up any hop bitterness. As a result, it's got a general cohesion and a decent balance, but it's not quite the fine-tuned carefully built brew I've come to expect from Bear Republic.

No yeast character, alcohol, or off-flavours come through.

Above average depth of flavour. Average duration and intensity of flavour. I like that it doesn't have biting bitterness. It's not the most intricate or complex IPA I've had, but it's superior to most IPAs. I just wish the hop profile was a bit more interesting.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Sleek and soft. Approachable. Medium-bodied. Mildly filling. Lightly oily. Slightly overcarbonated.

Not boozy, hot, gushed, astringent, harsh, rough, or scratchy.

Overall, this beer has a good presence on the palate and the texture complements the taste nicely, though it doesn't quite feel custom-tailored specifically to this flavour profile.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable. Hides its ABV well; I'd guess it was maybe 8%. While I did expect far more given Bear Republic's mastery of hoppy styles, this remains an enjoyable IPA which is worth trying once. Personally, I wouldn't get it again, but I'm glad I got to try it and I'll have no difficulty finishing the bottle.

I will say I can see how this may have been one of the best limited release IPAs out there when it was first released.

High B-

Photo of Beaver13
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle. Pours clear golden orange with a big big pillowy yellowish head that retains well and leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is tropical fruits, sugary malts and a some resiny hops.

The flavor is sweet bready malts with lots of tropical fruit and some dank, resiny hops with a lot of bitterness. The mouthfeel is a little thin.

Overall, a solid DIPA.

Photo of DenverHopHead
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle with a best by date of 6/5/14; into a tulip.
Appearance - gold, swirling storm of carbonation bubbles that build a towering foamy white head. Lacing is nice and sticky on the glass.
Smell - powerful citrus with a hint of some stone fruit.
Taste - strong, bitter hop kick, but proves to have enough of a malt foundation to keep it relatively balanced.
Feel - light to medium body with obvious carbonation; bitter and tangy hops.
Overall - another terrific IPA from BR; DIPA fans will enjoy this!

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

bear republic has the ipa thing down pretty well by now, and apex is sort of the culmination of the racer series, a citrusy and strong bright ipa with a wonderfully soft mouthfeel and a long fruity finish. i agree that this is more evolved than many, but i find it rather similar to the citra heavy racer 15 they recently put out. blonder in color, pale and a little washed out, but with a faint orange hue and a beautiful head that holds on forever in my globe. it smells like citrus hops and pale malt, rather basic on both counts, but its the execution and the hop schedule/dry hop program that make this what it is, and that is a bright and bold floral hoppy california india pale. delicate carbonation and just a pillowy feel throughout. fun beer, insanely easy drinking, familiar though, but darn good. you would never know its so strong either, a bomber goes down like a 12 ounce. cheap too at under 8 bucks.

Apex from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 940 ratings.