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Crazy Ivan - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Crazy Ivan
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BA SCORE
86
very good

127 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 127
Reviews: 54
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 10.5%
Wants: 2
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheEremite on 04-30-2008

This copper colored American IPA took a wild left turn when we fermented it with our favorite Trappist ale yeast. Charged with hops, followed closely by a clove and pepper Belgian yeast character.

70 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 127 | Reviews: 54
Reviews by Dixonian:
Photo of Dixonian
4.01/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the fort worth saucer. Poured into standard pint glass.

Was very intrigued when I heard about this one. I like both the racer 5 and red rocket, and I almost always love a belgian yeast.
This did not disappoint. Totally unique-cloudiness of an IPA and nice amber colour. Smell is the only disappointment I have-a bit subdued. Flavor is great-extremely smooth. Sweet and bitter. Like I said above, completely unique. Enjoyable mouthfeel and excellent carbonation.

Too bad twas only brewed once cause i'd seek this delicious bastard again.

More User Reviews:
Photo of magictrokini
3.47/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy amber with a thick off-white head. Hoppy and sweet aroma with caramel and Belgian yeast. More hops in the taste. Grapefruit, mango, and resin mix well with the earthy malt. The yeast brings a sweet funkiness that makes this more than the typical Belgian IPA. Very nice.

Photo of Auraan
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

Poured a cloudy reddish brown body with amber highlights and two fingers of thick, fluffy off-white head. It looks quite nice, a combination of a Dubbel and an IPA. Scents of fresh apples, pineapple juice, medium caramel, raisin and prune and medium-light grassy hops with notes of pine resin. Overall impression aroma is an interesting mix between aromas typical to a Trappist Dubbel with hop aromas from the West Coast US. More towards the Trappist side, but very pleasing and unique. Flavor begins bitter with notes of pineapple and caramel malt in the background with notes of pine resin, white pepper, raisin and dank, earthy hops. Middle is maltier but still bitter with notes of caramel, bready malt, white pepper, pine resin, dark fruit including raisin and plum. Finish is medium-dry with a still very present caramel and bready malt backbone, notes of citrus and orange peel, white pepper, light alcohol, light pine resin and spicy Belgian yeast. Aftertaste is bitter hops and white pepper. Overall impression of flavor is of a very unique IPA that combines the flavors of a Dubbel with those of a Belgian Pale and an American IPA. Very unique and it works well. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth, slightly slick feel and a drying finish with medium-light carbonation. Overall impression of mouthfeel is of a good, semi-dry ale. Very nice. Overall this is an excellent experiment that melds the Trappist yeast with an IPA quite well. The aroma and flavor benefit and the mouthfeel is pleasant. A unique, complex, very good ale.

Photo of Sammy
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on-tap at Cole's. This beer rocks. Dark fruit aroma. Dark fruit colour with a little white head and some lace dots. Served a bit too cold, a taste range as it warmed. Above average mouthfeel, and also above-average carbonation. Very tasty grapefruit, marmelade, a wonderful bitterness. So enjoyable.

Photo of Fatehunter
4.04/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured minimal head on a clearer dark straw colored body.
The aroma is great. Bright citrus, pear and Valencia orange.
The taste is complex with mandarin, moderate bitterness and finishes with black peppercorns.
The texture is smooth with moderate carbonation.
An outstanding beer that hits all the notes perfectly.

Photo of gillagorilla
3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had on tap at Max's Hopfest (from notes, 8/16-18/13)

A: Amber with lacing.

S: Bit of citrus but piney and malty.

T: All pine and malt. Airy yeastiness notes that are nice, but with a bit of spice.

M: Nice even coarseness.

O: Interesting and different.

Photo of bonbini26
3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Ginger Man 02-07-09. Served in an Imperial pint glass.

A - Pours a dark red/ruby with light to dark contrast from top to bottom, decent head and lace

S - Pretty mellow, but the hops and yeast come through on the nose the most, a little funk from the belgian yeast.

T - Starts out pretty mellow, on the belgian side, but the the hops/funk come through and finishes with a slight bitterness, in the herbal/earthy department

M - Not overpowering considering the mix of beers here, i guess the belgian yeast mellows it out, not much in the carbonation department either

D - I was expecting more from this beer considering the combo of racer 5/rocket ale. I guess the belgian yeast mellows this one out. I would like to try a mix of racer 5/rocket ale straight up. In the end the hop balance was pretty decent

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
3.62/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft served in a pint glass. $6. Listed as a "Belgo-American IPA" on Bear Republic's website, and I agree. (Not a Belgian Dark Ale as it is currently listed on BA.)

A: Served with basically no head or film, just a collar. The body is brassy red and semi clear. Medium dark. Light tan foamy collar. Spare splatters of lace.

S & T: The aroma is not very forthcoming. Definitely hop forward but the Trappist yeast component is highly noticeable as well. The slightly fruity, heavily spicy, peppers and cloves jump out on the back end of the palate. Floral hops. Sweaty yeast. Toasted, lightly caramel malt backbone

M: The mouthfeel starts out slow and picks up speed. The carbonation level turns out to be adequate after seeming too soft at first. Even approaches lively. Very dry all the way through. Mild bitterness.

D: I was excited to try something new from Bear Republic (not many of their offerings end up in PA). But the overall experience with Crazy Ivan was underwhelming if not unimpressive. The idea of using the Trappist yeast strain with a blend of Racer 5 and Red Rocket wort was good in concept, but it didn't live up to my expectations.

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

a: tulip serving, bright orange-golden in color with a subtle haze, good head retention and some lace

s: citrusy hops on a body of pale and light caramel malt with a nice phenolic spice running through - easily perceptible but far from taking over, hop heavy with good balance of components

m: carbonation on the lower side and smooth, light-medium body

t: pale and a light dose of caramel malts bring a balanced sweetness and set the stage for a nice citrus-tropical hop flavor and spicy yeast, clove phenols most identifiable, moderately bitter

d: easy, not a standout belgian ipa but a very solid one at least, the yeast character at least is spot-on

10 oz pour at ChurchKey, DC

Photo of weeare138
4.17/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appears a slightly hazy light orange with a fluffy white cap that slowly fades into a film a thick collar. Scattered bits of lacing are left round the glass.
Smell isof heavy pine, herbs, citrus. Caramel, and vanilla.
Taste is of the aromas wiu a refreshing citrus flavor that has pine sap resounding in the aftertaste.
Mouthfeel is sugary, medium bodied, sticky, bitter but balanced.

Photo of joshuadlight
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap sandwiched between a Pliny the Elder and a Blind Pig. I thought the beer was a reasonably good representation considering this was a Racer 5 plus a Red Rocket plus a Belgian yeast strain.
There is no way to avoid the Belgian yeast influence. It is present in the appearance, smell, and taste. But, the beer still holds on to characteristics of all three styles poured into it. I found it enjoyable and drinkable enough. I would not rebuff another were it offered to me.

Photo of david18
4.6/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beer advocate lists this as a belgian dark ale but it is so different from that. At Amsterdam Ale House on the Upper West Side of New York City it was described as red rocket combined with racer 5 and fermented with belgian yeast. That's exactly what it was but so successful. Unlike Cali from stone or Le Freak from Green Flash, which i think don't work, the maltiness of the red rocket really balances the interplay between the ipa and belgian yeast. This is a great beer that I will order every day until their taps kick.

Photo of nickdago
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap beer pours cloudy with a yellowish red tint. frothy white head.

Smells of hops but a sweet scent. nothing really piney about this one.

Taste starts off with a sharp hop taste but mellows to a sweetness almost flatness

A rather sweet IPA as advertised by the bar.

Easy to drink. Enjoyable but nothing special

Photo of Thorpe429
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Churchkey.

Pours a moderate yellow gold color with a bit of haze and a few fingers of white foamy head. Lacing follows the brew down the glass. Nose brings some excellent Belgian yeast characteristics, but doesn't really integrate the hops at this point. Taste melds the two quite well, with some nice clove and spice banging against some citrus and herbal hops. Very nice touch. Feel is splendid with a good bit of bitterness matched up against a moderately carbonated medium body. One of the better examples of the style that I've come across in some time.

Photo of jlindros
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap @ Amsby Abbey

A: Decent fizzy 1 finger head over semi hazy orange red slight wood colored beer. Leaves a notch of lacing for each sip.

N: Some fruits hops, little spicy and floral hops too, slight sweetness with a touch of Belgian malt aroma and Belgian yeast as well, but lighter on the nose than I hoped.

T: Taste starts with more Belgian malt flavors, a little wheat even with slight banana and juicy chewy malt flavors. A slight Belgian yeast flavor (remnants of it, not the yeastiness), then come the floral, spicy, citrus and somewhat bitter hops. Slightly juicy hop flavors, with a touch of warming booze and a little malty sweetness. A slight creamy malt comes through, with more late bittering hops. A little Belgian candi sugar and caramel flavoring.

M: Medium body with lots of carbonation.

F: Finishes pretty bitter and slightly astringent, with more fresh hop flavors, some spicy hops, chewy even slightly, little tingly warming booze, mostly dry but a touch of sweetness, a touch of citrus lingering too with a very looong bitter finish, which seems to just go on and on and stronger with each sip.

Photo of waldoiverson
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tap to imperial point

a clougy ruddish brown with tight lacing

s caramel and orange blossom

t bright hops well balanced with caramel malts. Nice sharp bite but a very mellow finish, wished for more from bear

m smooth with a dry tingle but not too dry thanks to solid malt

d great for a hot day good hops but balanced

Photo of Katahdin
3.06/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a nice reddish brown color with a good creamy head that was whitish in color and held together nicely. Very hoppy smell initially but not near as hoppy in taste. Had a funny texture in the mouth and could definitely taste dried fruit but could not discern the type. A bit of a fight to get down.

Photo of smcolw
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%

Dark amber with a tinge of ruby color. Slight haze. Excellent blanketing lace.

I smell wet wood and pine initially. Second sniff brings out more evergreen.

Surprisingly smooth semisweet malt flavor with a strong toasty element. There's a biting black pepper (hop) flavor in the swallow that creates a long aftertaste. Smooth body.

Photo of Gavage
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: amber in color with a 1" head that breaks apart quickly to a surface foam.

Smell: yeast, caramel, and a citrus tone lingers around.

Taste: caramel, belgian yeast, grapefruit, lemon, and some fruity tones are most notable. Bitterness is hearty and balances this one out. Alcohol is well hidden.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lighty crisp throughout. Aftertaste is short.

Drinkability: this beer went down quickly for the style. Very enjoyable and well balanced.

Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nose has soft hop and clean fruit, soft malt. Smells good.

Pours clear amber with mild head. Looks good.

Flavor follows nose, hoppy like a strong APA. Moderate bitterness. Mild ale fruit, soft citric fruit. Softly herbal and spicy. Tastes good. Feels good. Good drinkability.

Not very Belgian, quite IPAish.

Photo of John_M
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours reddish copper color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is fairly mute, but I get some light citrus, sweet ice tea and some underlying spice. Flavors repclicate the nose, except there's more of everything. Also, despite some light spicey sweentess initially, the beer is dominated by a fairly hoppy, bitter finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a fairly long, fairly bitter finish. Drinkability is quite good, with the alcohol not the least bit noticeable.

Nothing extraordinary here, but this was still a pretty nice beer I thought.

Photo of DrDogbeer
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Roadhouse. Poured into a shaker pint.
Pours a dark amber with an off white head. Decent retention and lacing. Smells mostly of sweet malts- caramel, sugar. I dont get anything form the racer 5 side of this one. Mostly, flavor is similar. Good malty flavor. Fairly sweet with a slightly bitter finish. Nice overall flavor I can pick up some spice in the flavor as well. Very drinkable beer and one I would try again.

Photo of scottfrie
3.05/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Imperial pint on-tap at the brewpub.

A: Served a dark burnt amber color with a very dense, well retained, and long lasting vanilla colored head that faded into a thick foamy film leaving a sheet of streaky lacework down the glass.
S: Light notes of bready Belgian yeast and mild citrus hops. Not especially potent.
T: Tastes slightly old which is disappointing for being on tap at the brewery. Either that or this is very malt heavy for an ipa, Belgian yeast or not. Some herbal leafy hops come through, but caramel and bready malt dominate alongside peppery, earthy, Belgian yeast. Finish is sweet and very faintly bitter.
M: Medium body, normal smooth carbonation, tight bubbles, slick, greasy, mouthfeel.
O: Drinks well at least, good but disappointing. Definitely tastes old. Would not order again.

Photo of mactrail
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Tiger! Tiger! in San Diego. Quite distinctive appearance in the tall Fischer tulip. Smooth foamy cap and unusual dark red brownish amber color. Nicely sudsy on the tongue.

The next impression on tasting is the fragrant hops. As a Belgian IPA this is a great example. Rich with a lot of warm, roasted malt, and the zingy hop flavors. Moderate bitter aftertaste. some tangy, peppery hints. Something fruity with a touch of honey. Hoppy and sensationally flavorful. The Belgian yeasty flavors seem to get lost in the rush of hops, but it's quite drinkable. I'm glad to taste something by Bear Republic outside their usual orbit.

Photo of MisterClean
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Sac brew. This is a combo of worts: Racer 5 and Red Rocket with a belgian yeast strain tossed in for good measure.

A - Poured a depp amber wth 1 finger of orange-white head. Dissipated moderately fast and left nice lacing.

S/T - Caramel, flower, and bittering hops.

M - Full bodied, hop dominated, sweet, and lightly dry. Bitterness in the mouthfeel.

D - This is really good. I think I really enjoy the Belgian IPA style.

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Crazy Ivan from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 127 ratings.