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American Beauty - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
American BeautyAmerican Beauty

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

946 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 946
Reviews: 151
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 10.7%
Wants: 69
Gots: 185 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: slvrmon82 on 10-09-2013

An Imperial Pale Ale brewed with granola & All American hops. 55 IBU

Collaboration with the Grateful Dead.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 946 | Reviews: 151
Reviews by slainte35:
More User Reviews:
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a snifter)
A- This beer pours a crystal clear deep orange body with a quick carb. There is a sticky thick beige head that last a good bit.

S- A flinty granola and oat aroma leads to some pine hops blended with citrus skins that have a perfumed quality to them and some silage aroma that comes through as it warms.

T- Full resin hops with a musty character to it and some granola flavor comes through as it opens. There is a green cinnamon hop spice that lingers a bit after each sip.

M- The light mouthfeel has a nice alcohol warmth in the finish that helps cut the soft sweetness.

O- This is a nice drinking complex Imperial Pale Ale. Good malt character with full hops that have nice depth and the alcohol and sweetness are softer than the hops but support each other.

Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.24/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a rich golden color with a thin fizzy head that trails the glass. The smell has a bit of toasted malt from the granola as well as a decent amount of citrus from the hops. The taste was very bright with hops being the focal point with the granola coming through in bits and pieces. Very well balanced and hides the heavy alcohol content well. Would definitely try again.

Photo of Kendo
3.96/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 11-14-14; consumed on 1-9-15, making this one about 7 weeks old.

A: Poured from the bomber into a Piraat tulip/snifter-type glass. Body is clear coppery-orange with a thin off-white film of head on top. Nice, bright look to this.

S: A faint mustiness detracts from the overall impression. I get tropical fruits over sweetish malt.

T: Tropical fruity hops (mango and pineapple) up front, then after the swallow I get a balance of caramel malt and hops, with a touch of lemon showing up along with the tropical fruit. Lingering spiciness too, plus heat from the ABV felt on the way down.

M: Medium to full in heft with moderate carbonation.

O: Good. Nothing phenomenal, however. A bit sweeter than I like my DIPAs to be. Too heavy overall to be drinking till the morning comes.

Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours into an imperial nonic a deep rich golden with a large blooming white head that really takes it's time settling slowly into a frothy mass,great carbonation.Aromas are lighter with some citric hops and nutty notes.To me this is DIPA all the way on the palate minus residual sweetness,caramel and nutty malts run into dry resiny hops with some more sweetness in a lingering finish.Not bad,not overly sweet just amp up the hops a little and this would be great in my opinion.I like this beer alot more than the Dead.

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
4.19/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle poured into a NB snifter.

A - Pours a soft, subdued pale straw yellow. A two-finger head of dense, eggshell-white foam sets up immediately and then takes its sweet time slowly collasping, leaving a generous ring of lace around the sides of the glass. After awhile, the surface is left with a large circle of loose, sudsy bubbles and a very fine sheen over the rest. Held to a full-spectrum light, the beer is a soft, muted sunset orange and somewhat cloudy, with a broad column of bubbles rising from the bottom center of the glass.

S - Gently toasted wheat crackers, oatmeal, and dry roasted nuts. Richer toasted malts in the background along with hints of caramel sugars and honey. Floral and herbal hop notes sit atop a faint trace of the ABV at the top of the glass. Overall, the nose is rich and is what communicates the imperial strength of the beer.

T - Toasted light whole grains touched by honey/light caramel sugars immediately balanced by herbal bittering hops. Individual taste components are nuanced, and make the labeling as an imperial pale ale rather than an IPA quite appropriate. The ABV is very well hidden - this glass is not the least bit hot - but the residual sugars in the profile suggest its there. As a bonus, they match the toasted malts exceptionally well. Finish offers echos of a honey-nut granola bar surrounded by light herbal hops - it's a great effect that encourages additional tasting. At times, it even drifted toward peanut butter. Big props to executing the original concept very well.

M - Rather fizzy, with good, pronounced carbination. A bit fuller body than expected, and components complement each other without being tightly integrated. Nice structure across the taste profile, offering each its own moment at the mic. Finish is moderately dry, but provides a sweet spot on the back of the tongue to savor.

O - A delicious creation that captures the spirit of those crunchy granola tripsters who worship The Dead. Give the finish some time to settle on the tongue and you'll swear you just ate a Clif Bar. Judged solely as a beer, I can see how some would want a stronger hops profile in order to better clean the sugars, but doing so would turn this into an IIPA, and would drown the taste the recipe has successfully achieved. Because of that, I recommend tasting this alone rather than attempting to pair it with food.

Photo of tigg924
3.12/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance: 1/3 inch head, clear, amber in color, moderate carbonation

Smell: earthy hops and caramel

Taste: burnt caramel and earthy hops

Mouthfeel: bitter with slight sweetness, light bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall: A slightly hoppy grainy and earthy average beer. Does not rank too high on the scale of DFH beers I have tried. Nice to have tried, but I think I will pass in the future.

Photo of Cavanaghty
3.76/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Clear reddish amber color with a thick beige head that lingered.

Smell: Surprisingly mild smell of hops.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth medium bodied. Taste of mild hops and mild malts.

Overall: I was surprised at how mild this beer was, it was good, but very mild in my opinion.

Photo of Irishrover58
4.9/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Just had my first it won't be my last

Photo of pat61
4.41/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dogfish head brewed American Beauty with almond honey granola and all American hops and it sounds outrageous. It has a fruity, granola, almond honey nose. Pours orange tinted amber under a 2” quickly dissipating lightly tan tinted white foam cap with clingy lace. On the palate it enters nutty and slightly sweet with honey and light sugars balanced by a moderate hop bitterness on the finish. The finish has an underlying layer of honey and leaves a little honey stickiness on the lips. The beer is very creamy with above average carbonation stuffed into a medium full bodied beer. The granola is definitely there throughout but it is never too much to be cloying and is nicely balanced by the other flavors in the beer. It pairs well the the background pale ale graham cracker flavors and is well balanced by both the hop flavors and bitterness. The alcohol is unnoticeable.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

25 ounce bottle of the dead bear hoisting a mug as American Beauty's emblem on this DFH label I am listening to the album American Beauty, the beer is crystal clear copper amber with a fine khaki head forming thick. Aroma floral hops citrus notes beautiful American hop bouquet I'm a fan going forth with this beer. Big honey notes of earthy grain from the granola additions this is a beer for hop heads and dead heads alike no worries there's both here to party. Flavor wise there's big hops with hints of whole grain granola hanging in there, it's a big beer experience the grains don't take away from the American hops in anyway I'm enjoying every last drop, slightly resinous hop oils reign supreme here, mouthfeel has an oily complexity medium bodied at best with rolling hints of big hops making it through in this big alcohol beer. Overall I'm thrilled to be party of history this beer is going to sell out in all markets due to the strong Dead following whether the beer is worth it's weight in gold or not. However, I feel that both parties are going to pleased with this offering.

Photo of chinchill
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Dogfish Head event with Sam Cagliogne at Barleys in Greenville, SC

Orange-amber body topped by a soapy, off-white head.

This "Imperial Pale Ale" does seem properly classified as an Amer. IPA.
Hoppy and moderately bitter, with a high ABV that is partially hidden. The contributions of the granola are also mostly hidden, although there are hints of honey.

Photo of Fuzzycuffs
3.49/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: This is a beautiful beer to look at. The initial pour showed unexpectedly good head retention, even for a sticky APA like this one. A rich, rosy amber colour with fluffy, white head, and very minimal lacing (unsurprising given the 9% abv)

Smell: The honey granola is immediately apparent, didn't pick up on the almonds like some others. Hops are understated, but sweet in the nose of this one. Kind of a sweet smell, overall, with not much complexity to it.

Taste: Good, but falls short of great. The taste of almonds and granola are apparent, but seem trapped beneath the intense hop flavors. Very little honey shows through, but I'm okay with that. The factor that holds this brew back from greatness is the lack of harmony between the flavors. Rather than the sweet nutty start, and clean floral finish I expected, I was left with a muddled mix of flavors that seem to taper off simultaneously.

Feel: I really prefer a stronger body on a brew this strong and ambitious. I feel like some interesting malt characteristics may have held the flavors together nicely, but was instead left with mild, understated mouthfeel. The carbonation is very apparent, and the well-concealed boozy-ness makes an appearance at the back of the throat. Other than that, the mouthfeel is nothing special, if not weak. This would be a great feel for a less ambitious brew, but with such a pronounced flavor, the contrast is somewhat unsettling.

Overall: Pretty good, but from this brewery, I expected much more. Dogfish Head is an industry leader when it comes to Pale Ales, and I'm not sure how they went wrong with this one. From any other brewery, I would be thrilled to find this beer. Unfortunately, by a very slight margin, my expectations were not met.

I'm not sure whether I would pick up this brew again. I don't want to say it wasn't good( because it really was quite good), but any store that stocks this is bound to have something better for the same price tag.

Photo of Brenden
4.19/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A heavy bronze color in the snifter, American Beauty shines a bright medium orange in the light, letting it in but not through to remain completely opaque. The head, barely off-white, seems to never fall past the creamy, heavy full finger it begins with. Extremely creamy webbing to nearly the bottom of the glass proceeds from a thick ring at the top.
The smell is sweet and fruity up front, lots of jammy berry with an earthy tone and leafy hops adding balance. A little bit of a honey note accentuates the sweetness, with nut giving some more depth.
The berries and earth are first on the tongue. While I wasn't sure going in how I felt about granola in a beer, in the middle it tastes like I'm crunching on it and it works here. Leaf and flora add a light bitterness to balance, and I find lots of nuttiness in the finish. Overall, it's really juicy and fresh, and I really like it. There's complexity, layers to discover and lots of flavor overall. The ratings seem a little low, but it's subjective to a point.
It's lightly crisp all the way through. The body is medium and there's a flowing creaminess on the tongue. Neither the crispness nor the smoothness ever waver.

Photo of dertyd
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a real nice IPA a little on the sweet malty side I think from the honey granola with a little nutty finish really really good IPA from Dogfish Head

Photo of Roguer
3.81/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Huge, huge frothy flat white head from a too-turbulent pour (my fault). Fantastic lacing; clear orange/copper brew.

Sweet aroma, honey and - dare I say it? - granola. (It's possible that this kind of malty sweetness is present in IPAs/APAs all the time, and DFH has put "granola" into my brain rather specifically.) Bright, floral hops, some pine, a bit of dank resin, and some light caramel malt for balance. A lot to the nose, but relatively subdued in strength.

Very, very sweet; wow, extremely sweet! Honey and floral notes on the front end; a bit of bitter pine followed by a massive dose of sweetness at the end, which the high ABV surely has a hand in.

Very light carbonation; no sting. Very little balance overall. This contributes to an overall slow-sipper despite a medium-thin feel overall.

This beer is simply too sweet for me. I agree with the concept of "Imperial Pale Ale," here: higher ABV, some bright hops, but a massive, massive dose of malty sweetness. It tastes good, but it's just a sugar overload for my palate, at least compared to what I was expecting in this kind of beer.

Photo of McNealc31
4.4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Great head and really nice color. Honey, orange, and hops in the aroma. Flavor is similar, though the hops are more noticeable and there is a lingering sweetness. I know this is brewed with granola, but the nuttiness you might expect is very subtle. The orange, grape, and honey are firmly there. In fact, getting some hints of Midas Touch here.

Once again, Dogfish Head goes bold and doesn't disappoint. Really tasty brew. Shame it's a one-off run.

Photo of tempest
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I'd call the "imperial pale ale" description accurate, calling it a strong ale or barleywine works too. It's just a big beer with a lot of everything. The hops aren't on par with Arrogant Bastard, they're a softer citrus punch. The malts are toasty with a granola-like sweetness (or maybe I'm imagining that because it's on the label). Very smooth and balanced for the strength, it feels at home in a red wine glass. It's a good trip.

Photo of sjones5045
4.06/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

4/10/15

Pour copper red with a nice head that lasts. Taste is a nice balance of hops and malt. Nice aftertaste and pretty smooth. Enjoyed a bomber on my own. Would love it in 12oz bottles.

Photo of Vonerichs
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Clear and dark gold color. Billowing white head with spotty lacing.

Not much hops in the aroma. Light grassy and citrus notes. It's mostly grainy and nuts.

Grassy and citrus hop flavored pop a little more in the taste but are still subdued. There's a light sweetness and again, grainy.

The mouthfeel is by far my favorite part. It's crisp and drinks light yet still has a soft, full body (if that makes any sense.). Clean.

A very nice beer. It's not as hoppy as I would have liked but it's highly drinkable, especially at 9%. Very clean, too.

Photo of selimoidar
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At this time I have sampled this beer both on tap and bottled. The first thing you notice is the color. Appearing like a slightly cloudy Rose' wine, it is a very beautiful beer as it settles in to its head.

The aroma is remarkably floral, but still contains a very nice hoppy presence on the nose to eliminate any fear that this beer will come off as sweet.

Again, presenting floral on the first taste, this is an exceptionally well maintained balance of subtle or implied fruit forward sweetness with a slightly bitter, but more dry finish. A full flavored backbone supports all the high notes like a well arranged harmony (It is a Grateful Dead inspired beer after all).

I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a mild IPA, or even a more malty lager. At 9%, this is dangerously drinkable no matter who you are.

Photo of gillagorilla
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had on tap at Max's during BBW 2013 (from notes, 10/27/13).

A: Lacing! Amber copper.

S: Quite hoppy. Piney. Sweet oat, almost like wort.

T: Hoppy. Decent pale. Piney but not much to say here.

M: Smooth with a bit of coarseness.

O: Ok, not what I was expecting at all. It appears that nobody can agree on the style either. Max's had it listed as an Imperial Pale and RB had it as an American Strong Ale. I really only got the granola in the scent.

Photo of acostuhhh
2.68/5  rDev -30%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Just not a fan. Thought it tasted terriblen especially the aftertaste... Which was papery? Not really sure. Thin, and just smelled kind of funky. Somewhat bitter, kind of foamy so the pour might not have been great, but good color. Trying again when I can.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle, bottled on 9/25/2013. Served in a Dogfish Head IPA glass, the beer pours a clear orange/amber color with about an inch off-white head that stays around for a long time. There's also a good amount of lacing. Aroma is nice, it smells like citrusy hops, honey, grainy malt, oats, and some light berries. I think the taste is mostly like the aroma, it tastes like citrusy and light floral hops, grainy malt, oats, honey, and a bit of berries/fruitiness. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and creamy with moderate carbonation. I think it's a good Imperial Pale Ale, and it's certainly worth trying. $11.99 a bottle.

Photo of philbe311
3.99/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - A fairly standard pour yields three plus fingers worth of rich creamy whipped densely packed frothy goodness with a number of big chunky bubbles mixed throughout... Excellent retention... The froth turns creamier as this one continues to settle... Much paler than expected... The color is a very light caramel that displays some pale straw when back lit... A limited to moderate bit of slightly sluggish carbonation... A good bit of carbonation clings to the sides of the glass...

S - A strong malt base at the forefront... Caramel... Cereal grains... What I'm assuming are notes of the granola... Some light mentholyptus noted buried way beneath the surface... Very little or no hop presence...

T - Malt, malt and more malt... Loaded with cereal grains, biscuit, granola and light caramel... Surprisingly, that is enough to adds layers of rich complexity with each and every sip... There is a slightly medicinal presence on the finish which is rather refreshing and really pleases the palate... Again, little or no hop presence...

M - A completely luxurious and smooth experience... On the fuller side of medium bodied... Rich and creamy throughout... Smooth and sophisticated... Limited carbonation...

D - A really enjoyable American Strong Ale... It's like every beer you've ever drank, but it's also completely unique... I don't have a single complaint... Also, while I have no superlatives the unique dimensions make this one completely memorable... I would drink this on a regular basis if I were able to... A job very well done by DFH...

Photo of fourstringer
3.46/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a Brewer's Art goblet. Moderate hand. No identifiable date on the bottle. Wouldn't exactly call myself a Dead Head, but let's see how this beer goes...

A: Honey-amber body with good clarity. 1 1/2 finger of off-white head. Good retention. Moderate to light lacing. Good looking beer.

S: Vaguely fruity hops. Interesting malt character - must be the granola. Some grape and berry. Raisin faintly. Light overall.

T: Unexpectedly light hop bitterness with breakfast cereal-type malt. Granola. Fairly strong oatmeal maltiness on the back end. Semi-dry finish without much definition. Some maple syrup notes. Indistinct hop bitterness in the aftertaste. Minimal alcohol - 9% ABV is well hidden.

M: Moderate carbonation with the typical, full-ish DFH body. Fitting.

O: Inoffensive, but not particularly endearing. The granola is present and interesting, but overall I find this experiment to be a bit underwhelming. A paucity of scents and flavors renders it somewhat lackluster. On a positive note, I crushed this big bottle in a flash. Very easy for a 9%er.

Prost!

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American Beauty from Dogfish Head Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 946 ratings.