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Alphalpha - Ithaca Beer Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

144 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 144
Hads: 225
Avg: 4.08
pDev: 11.76%
Wants: 68
Gots: 26 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: almychristopher on 12-30-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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firstprev| 76-100 | 101-125 | 126-150  | next → last
Reviews: 144 | Hads: 225
Photo of jm1229
3.73/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle with no date opened on 9/10/11 and poured into a Goose Island pint glass. Served at 55 degrees.

A- Pours a nice golden yellow/orange with a two finger, fluffy white head. Leaves plenty of lacing on the glass. I will repeat, very fluffy.

S- Wow, smells awfully sweet. The honey is really coming through. Some malt, too, but it's really sweet. Smells more like a barleywine than a IIPA.

T- It's initially hoppy (sorta), followed by the malt. Really a sweet beer, very sugar-y. Some pine, too.

M- Very creamy, yet light and fluffy, too. Very easy to drink (and that's a good thing when drinking the whole bottle alone).

O- Not really what I was expecting from this one. As a IIPA, it doesn't really work, but as a toned down barleywine (Doggie Claws from Hair of the Dog comes to mind), it's really great. Overall, a good, but not great, IIPA.

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Photo of regspeir
3.73/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 0z bottle (from Pinocchios) poured into a Duvel snifter. Beer poured yellow/gold with a two-finger, white head (aggressive pour). Lacing was light and fragile. Smell was floral and citrus with some sweetness (honey?). Taste was honey, caramel, lemon and orange. There is some hop presence in the finish and nice dryness but this remain sweet, even in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is crisp, medium and a little sticky. Carbonation is about average for the style. All-in-all a decent offering I would try again.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.7/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've been ducking this beer for so long. Seeing it on shelves for the past three years, I gave in on the newest batch made. #39. Into a Ithaca 10th anniversary pint glass.

Alphalpha Glides in the glass a light golden color almost reaching a straw color when up to the light. A nice amount of burnt sugar foam with decent retention and minor stick. A slight haze when towards the light.

Smell comes off semi sweet forward as alot of East Coast DIPA'S do, but there is a nice amount of aroma hops to fill the void. This seems almost subdued compared to some. Getting my nose in it, some light citrus rind, lemon, a certian malt profile builing with time. Some alcohol seeping through. blech.

Taste is nice on the 1st half of the glass. The hops take hold and do some work on the mouth, but it Alphalpha does not destroy. the honey kinda dulls whatever the hops may have done. It's a nice balance though, enjoyable.

There is a nice medium build to the body of this beer and the liquid has a small syrupy feel to it. Bitterness is subdued by the honey addition halfway down the glass. Again not a palate wrecker.

This is a beer worth trying. I wonder why this is not kegged more often, bottles seem to pop up every 18 months or so. I would like to try this off the tap with a bit more pop.

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Photo of kzoobrew
3.7/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch E!029, poured into Stone IPA glass.

Hazy golden orange body. Fluffy three finger eggshell colored head. Retention is quite impressive. Thick sheets of lacing left behind as the head recedes.

The aroma is dominated up front by intense hops. Resinous wet hops cones and candied grapefruit. Very organic grassy aromas pour out of the glass. Light pale malt sweetness provides a subtle backbone.

Strong grassy hop flavor absolutely coats the tongue out of the glass. A more subdued citrus flavors lingers just behind. There is an underlying sweetness present in which I am struggling to put my finger on. My first instinct was caramel malt but that notion has gone by the wayside the more I work my way through. Warm biscuity malt sweetness is present but does not account for the sweetness as a whole. I am reluctant to attribute the sweet flavor to the honey, as it would ferment out, though I suppose some residual flavor may be left behind contributing to the overall flavor.

Medium bodied, slightly under moderate carbonation. Very creamy texture leaves a bit of an oily residue on the tongue. Lingering sweetness and grassy hop flavor makes of a much longer finish than anticipated.

Good beer, but not great. I would be very interested to sample this beer uber fresh. I believe the fresher the sample the better this beer is. Drinks quite easy though the sweetness does catch up, one pour is plenty. Nice beer overall.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle

Appearance - Hazy yellow colour with a large size frothy off white coloured head. It's hard to make out the amount of carbonation and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, grapefruit, hops, herbal notes, grass

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and the taste is made up lots of woody/herbal hops. There is also a light maltiness, some caramel, and a a bit of lemon/grapefruit juice and zest. It ends with a herbal hoppy aftertaste.

Overall - A little too herbal/earthy for my liking, but still an interesting beer worth trying. It needs just a touch more sweetness or a fruitiness to be a repeat beer for me.

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Photo of beachbum1975
3.66/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750ml bottle - batch # E!013 - served at fridge temps with DrewOSU and newtonty.

I was drawn to the description on this beers label, so I had to try it (I love honey and malt).

To my surprise, this poured a super cloudy, fleshy apricot color with brown lowlights. The head is a 3/4 inch light tan monster with big bubbles.

The nose is relatively mild with pineapple hops and light, sweet malts. Pretty simple nose...

Pineapple hops presence takes the stage with an orangey flavor throughout. There's very light alcohol in the finish with a malt presence that comes through, as well.

The overall flavor profile was much more simple then I was expecting. I was hoping for a larger honey taste, but only got traces. Nice, but overall I was a bit underwhelmed.

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Photo of smcolw
3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear and dirty gold color. The head is reasonable while it settles slowly. Lots of "cloudy" lace (meaning more than spotty but less than a blanket).

High alcohol and moderate hop dominate the smell. More earthy than floral on the nose.

Strong hop bitterness in the swallow. The alcohol is very evident, particularly in the swallow. I do not detect any honey or mead-like flavors despite the "Double Honey Bitter" monicker except for a touch of sweetness. Otherwise, this is all peppery bitterness. Long aftertaste. The body above moderate with a corresponding level of carbonation.

Overall, I would describe this as a near extreme beer--lots of hop and alcohol, but little complexity.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.62/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer started off as a nice golden colored IPA. The further down the bottle I got the sediment actually changed the color to a milky looking yellow. Kind of gross looking actually. The smell was of earthy hops. The taste had a good hop bite to it and was too bad really. If this brew didn't have so much sludge on the bottom of the bottle it wouldn't be that bad. I found this brew to be a little too much for me and probably would buy it again.

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Photo of jpmclaug
3.6/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into my Duvel tulip. Picked this one up in Boston a few weeks ago.

A - Clear golden-orange body with a bubbly, soapy looking, white head resting on top.

S - Nice piney hop aroma with a nice honey sweetness mixed in.

T - Follows the aroma. Piney hop notes blend with a mix of honey notes. Kind of a lingering bitterness.

M - Really a bit on the thin side.

D - Pretty decent but kind of reminds me of a wannabe version of Hopslam, and really falls short compared to that monster. Enjoyable and I wouldn't mind drinking it again but I wouldn't seek it out.

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Photo of DrewOSU
3.56/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours dark yellow to light orange, topped with a ½ inch cloudy white head. Lacing is thick and sticky, on the side of the glass. After about 10 mins of sitting, a thick white chunk of suds forms in the middle. Amazing head.

S: Sweet floral and earthy notes. Nothing overwhelming, but has a nice fragrance. I thought by the pour, it would be a little more on the nose.

M/T: A lighter medium body on the tongue. Big hit of earthy, almost a farmhouse quality taste on the first taste. I get a hoppy presence, but the alphalpha and earth tones definitely drowns out the cascades. The honey also contributes taking the bite off the floral. You get more of the hop flavor after the swallow, as it finishes dirty, with a floral back lash that sticks to the roof of your mouth.

D: Great pour, great look, big hop flavor on the second wave. I was hoping for more, but you can't say this beer is boring or average. A unique flavor for sure. The drinkability is not superior as it finishes a little grungy, but with fresh ingredients are nice.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
3.53/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a meeger 1" head which quickly totally dissipated. Interesting hazy honey yellow color. Smell and taste are both hoppy IPA and frankly if they had labelled it as just that I probably would have been more supportive. But supposedly this has honey in it and honestly I'm not tasting that at all. And although it's hoppy I've had much hoppier. Nice beer, just not as nice as the label notes had hinted.

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Photo of UMNbeerhunter
3.52/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch E!019 poured into a Darkness Snifter 2/11/11

Appearance is a cloudy yellow color with the sediment settling quickly. Foam also dissipates very quickly leaving little lacing.

Smell is of carmel and hay as well as a little citrus in the background.

Taste is different and complex. I can taste the hops and a earthy grassy taste but their is also a taste I can not pinpoint and it leaves a strange after taste.

Mouthfeel is good laces the mouth and slight carbonation tingle on the way through the mouth leaving a tingling on the roof of the mouth.

Drinkability is relatively low. I enjoyed the different twist on an IPA but this is not for me. Almost feels like a saison mixed with a citrus double IPA. Give it a whirl but don't expect to be dazzled.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a slightly-hazy yellowish color with a moderate white head and a spot or two of lacing on the way down. The nose carries some citrus fruits along with some tropical notes and a bit of light sweetness. The flavor has honey and semi-sweet malt along with a moderate citrus and tropical hop presence. Body is more toward medium with a bit of residual sweetness and a nice bitter finish. Solid brew.

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Photo of Katahdin
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a nice rich and robust color and the aroma is isntantly surrounding your senses. A definite floral/hoppy/slight fruity smell to the beer. The taste is all hops, both on the palate and going down. The floral nature of the hops overwhelms the taste and texture of the beer giving it a strong, lingering hoppy aftertatse. Not as exceptional as I had heard from others but an OK beer if you don't mind getting overwhelmed by Hops.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
3.38/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours an orange-copper hue, with a khaki head that looks like bubbly pancake batter.

S - Smells strongly of sour-grapefruit-y malt, fused with grapefruit citric hops. Kind of strong on the one grapefruity note.

T - Tastes the same as the nose, with some of the same flavors I tend to find in rye beers. The hop is not expressed in a manner that is diverse enough for me, especially considering how hop-forward and bitter this brew is. There is a very big sturdy malt, but it mimics the hop to a large degree, just as in the nose.

M - DIPA. A bit syrupy, slightly.

D - In an overcrowded style, why bother? Step your game up here, Ithaca.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
3.1/5  rDev -24%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Batch E!029 poured into glass at about 45-55 degrees.

Aggressive pour yields short, soapy white head that fades quickly over a cloudy golden body. Nice lacing.

Aromas are fairly faint for the style. Sweet with lots of honey, and floral/herbal hops.

Thick on the palate with low carbonation. Flavors carry a definite herbal bitterness, but the sweetness seems to be separated. It definitely goes from sweet fruits up front (mango especially) to increasingly bitter (minty & floral) in the middle, and then astringently bitter lingering finish (blood orange peel). Pretty sticky overall.

I feel bad giving this one "average" scores, since I'm sure Ithaca didn't necessarily brew this to be a true-to-form DIPA. It's pretty tasty overall.

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Photo of aasher
3.06/5  rDev -25%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I picked this bottle up at Jungle Jim's in Cindy. It pours a nice cloudy bright orange in color with a light white head. It smells of faded citrus hops and faded sweet malts. Fuck! The flavor is of pure citrus hops and malts. This bottle apparently wasn't stored like it could have been. It's a lost cause at this point, drainpour. I'll revisit this later. Bottle dates would be nice.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
2.75/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Batch E!019 courtesy of a great trading partner.

Sadly lacking much hoppy in the fridge, this beer met the expected before drinking criteria. While it seems this batch might be a bit dated, it doesn't seem too aged a bottle to constructively review.

Pours a very opaque, milky, pale yellow with a thin white surface film that last throughout: rather underwhelming.

Nose is yeast, pear, (maybe this is the honey?) , straw, and a faint and slightly muddled gumminess that I will attribute to a fading hop presence. As a Double IPA, this doesn't fit the bill.

Honey provides a strong base of sweetness. The yeast from the nose reappears and rides through til the end which finally shows off the Cascades used here. While welcomed, the hops here are almost to little too late. Everything here feels more like a wheat beer than are DIPA.

Mouthfeel is bright and bubbly and a bit over carbonated.

The overpowering yeat is giving me a headache. I'm not sure the remainder of this bottle isn't destined for the bottom of my sink. Disappointing and I don't think it's from the age.

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Photo of MLasoski
2.55/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured this into an ale glass. Two separate servings.

A: Light gold body, minimal head stayed around. The beer is opaque, unfiltered.

S: Malts, malts, and more malts. Cant really smell the honey per se; however, it does have a sweet aroma.

T: Its a bit flat. I didnt see much carbonation in the body so I shouldn't be surprised. It has a big malt character and the honey is subtle.

M: Malts upfront, finishing with a sweet honey flavor. I feel like I'm drinking alcholic tea.

D: I would rather drink an 8.50% ABV that has more taste, depth, and zing. A winter seasonal perhaps? Tis the season I suppose.

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Alphalpha from Ithaca Beer Company
91 out of 100 based on 144 ratings.