1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Illumination - Central Waters Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
IlluminationIllumination

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

698 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 698
Reviews: 246
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 10.1%
Wants: 82
Gots: 50 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co. visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: CaptainIPA on 06-01-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 698 | Reviews: 246 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in March so not super fresh, so i'll have to try this again when very fresh.

Pours a nice fizzy 1 finger head that fades semi slowly with a decent lacing, over super hazy nectar orange colored beer.

Nose has that typical aged IPA candy hop aroma, earthy hops, citrus and a bit of tropical fruit, almost chewy hops as well, with some sweet malts, reddish caramel and nougat like malt aromas, and a hint of booze.

Taste is nice, lots of bitter hops hit right away, plenty of bitterness with a big IBU count. Hops bring tons of earthy almost spicy flavors, chewy and candy like aged DIPA flavors, and again citrus with a bit of tangerine and bit of orange rind. A really nice soft malt flavor with some reddish caramel and candy malt flavors, nice rich almost syrupy but not quite. A bit of a booze kick but not much as well, more warmth. Finish is even more bitter as it dries and gets spicy and earthy hop kick, with a bit more sweet reddish malts. The hops get astringent and salty/briny even, tons of earthy hops way on the finish.

Mouth is a bit heavier bodied, decent carb, and a bit of warming booze.

Overall nice, gets a bit astringent and briny, big sweet malt base with a touch of booze, nice hop flavors that I bet would be a whole lot better fresh.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2011 22:49:37 | More by jlindros
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at TJ's, Paoli, PA

Served in a snifter, a bright, somewhat hazy, golden orange color with a thin white head, minimal lacing. I really loved the aroma on this one: lots of fresh, citrusy hops, pineapple sweetness, orange, biscuity malts in the background. Another nice blast of juicy hops in the taste, orange, grapefruit, pineapple, honeysuckle, subdued bready malts. Some grassy and piney bitterness in the finish with a good drying effect. Smooth, medium mouthfeel, and quite drinkable overall.

Serving type: on-tap

03-31-2012 11:43:16 | More by Rifugium
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 7/9/10 notes. Had at a local DC tasting.

a - Pours a golden color with one inch of white head.

s - Smells of citrus fruits and hops, tropical fruits, and earthy malts.

t - tastes of grapefruit, other citrus hops, and tropical fruits.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

d - A nice IPA. Lots of nice citrus hops to it. Would like to have again.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2010 19:11:06 | More by mdfb79
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours slightly hazed amber with an off-white, lasting head. Plenty of lacing sticks.

The smell is hoppy - citric and tropical fruits greet the nose in a robust way. A hint of biscuit mixes in. Very pleasant!

The taste is of citric and tropical fruits with a hint of pine/resin. Hops supported by a firm, caramel-ish malty backbone. It has a spicy, refreshingly dry finish.

Very smooth. Medium-to-full-bodied, the alcohol is dangerously well-hidden.

A wonderfully hoppy DIPA. Great interpretation of the style! Also, it comes in a very reasonably priced 6-pack! Certainly recommended!

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2014 00:39:49 | More by jwc215
Photo of Rochefort10nh
Rochefort10nh

New Hampshire

5/5  rDev +23.2%

11-21-2011 00:50:39 | More by Rochefort10nh
Photo of mendvicdog
mendvicdog

Maryland

3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

05-21-2013 13:26:34 | More by mendvicdog
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draft at Capone's.

Pours a hazy dark golden range color with golden yellowish tangerines hues when held to a light and a one finger creamy white head. Good retention, slowly fading into a thin lasting ring that leaves sporadic chunks of soapy lacing behind.

Earthy and floral aroma with resinous oily pine notes as well as some sweet tropical and citrus fruit notes. Hints of tangerine, orange peel and dry soily hops. Subtle malt backbone but the nose is all hops.

Medium bodied with a blast of dry earthy pine bitterness that lingers throughout over the sweeter notes and malt backbone into a long dry finish. Lots of earthy pine and sticky dank hops balanced by grapefruit and orange peel. Slightly watered down with a decent malt backbone with hints of biscuit and toast. Nice dry finish.

Serving type: on-tap

04-18-2011 05:06:08 | More by corby112
Photo of MarkyMOD
MarkyMOD

Colorado

4/5  rDev -1.5%

05-23-2012 19:02:27 | More by MarkyMOD
Photo of tempest
tempest

Pennsylvania

3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Label notch tells me this was bottled in May. The hop character is really fruity and not terribly bitter, reminding me a lot of the big-hops beers from Avery. Pineapple dominated the hops with just a little citrus and spice round the edges. There's also a smooth bready malt backbone providing a bit of balance, but I think it's too much.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2010 16:10:17 | More by tempest
Photo of XmnwildX12
XmnwildX12

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

11-22-2013 05:18:25 | More by XmnwildX12
Photo of InspectorBob
InspectorBob

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -1.5%

10-30-2013 19:21:02 | More by InspectorBob
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I am not sure how old this one was, whether it came from a local trader or out of my cellar. As such, I employed a very gentle pour so as not to disturb any lees that may have been present. I got no head as a result, but it had NE-quality clarity in its light-amber color. Nose smelled of pineapple and caramel, again causing me to question its freshness. Mouthfeel was medium and the taste was of minty hops, caramel malt and HEAT! Holy alcohol burn, Batman! This held up really well and could have sat even longer. Jesus, I was openly sweating after my first mouthfeel. I wonder what this might be like young. After a couple of swigs, I began to settle into the spearmint/peppermint-like hops and the caramel sweetness underlying the hops. The heat began to subside, but it remained a big beer. Finish was literally breath-taking. Phew!

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2012 21:39:43 | More by woodychandler
Photo of duceswild
duceswild

Maryland

4/5  rDev -1.5%

05-21-2013 04:55:31 | More by duceswild
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this the other night side by side with PtE, but not decided to review it so I don't mess up any tastes.

Poured into Bruery glass.

Pours 1 finger of creamy beige head. Pretty decent retention leaving some sticky lace rings. Color is a hazed golden bronze.

Aroma:Very similar to pliny. Big hop bite right up front. Lots of floral and pine notes. Tons of citrus fruit flavors. Just a touch of bready malts show. A very nice aroma.

Taste: More bready malts show here than the aroma. A very big chewy taste to it. A strong floral hop profile with an instant rush of grapefruit citrus. Also has some orange notes in there.

Mouthfeel: Very bitter, but also creamy. This was one of the biggest differences when comparing the beers. Pliny didn't have this creamy feel to it. A fairly big body with a good amount of carbonation. Ends with a massive amount of hops in the aftertaste.

Overall, I was really shocked with this beer. It is a great dipa and something I would have a hard time believing came out of the midwest (despite the malts showing through a bit). It is pretty drinkable at 9%. Hats off to central waters for this one.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2010 23:26:43 | More by mothman
Photo of ejimhof
ejimhof

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -1.5%

06-30-2012 02:36:21 | More by ejimhof
Photo of BARFLYB
BARFLYB

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a weyerbacher tulip glass on the late late.

A slight hiss when the cap is popped CWIDIPA pours a bright orange color with a golden glaze within. Some sediment towards the end of the bottle makes it a shade darker. A small cap leading to a small island, no stick.

Smelling the hops from the bottle, in the tulip this just screams HOPS and lots of them. Citrus over malt, in fact I cant really detect any malt in the nose. Some grapefruit and a bail of pine. A splash of alcohol. Pretty one demensional.

This is a hop bomb in every sense of the word. Hop juice with citrus including alot of grapefruit. That's about it for the citrus, not a melange of tropics like the west coast runners. Pine is big and there is some alcohol in the back end. I cant make out any malt.

The hop juice sticks to the mouth and does not quit, long after taste of astringent grapefruit and pine needles. Swish this around a bit in the mouth and watch lupulus take hold. Barely any relief in the end with no bisquit malt or the like to even things out. This is not necessarily a bad thing though, just different. Body is medium and is carbed up nice like. Bitter as all hell.

At 109 IBU's I expected this to scorch the mouth and boy did it. All in all it's a double I that could use a layer or two more of different flavor. One sided, astringent, alcohol on the tounge. Some malt might help. Even though it's a bit unbalanced, I appriciate the biggness of it and I say to myself 'it is what it is'. Two steps away from being a total palate wrecker.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2011 01:35:19 | More by BARFLYB
Photo of John_M
John_M

Oregon

3.63/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at TJ's the other day.

The beer pours a copper orange color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is also fairly attractive, showcasing orange citrus and considerable tropical fruit. Given the aroma profile with this beer, I was sort of expecting a sweeter style DIPA, and that's pretty much what I got. There is a lot of tropical fruit flavor in this beer, and it tended to overwhelm the hoppy bitterness. There was some bitterness on the finish, and I appreciate the fact that this beer isn't too boozy (a frequent problem with sweeter style DIPA's), but still.... I really felt the sweet malt in this beer dominated the flavor profile, to the point it was a bit difficult to drink. Mouthfeel was medium bodied to full, with a fairly long, malty, slightly bitter finish.

A decent DIPA, but just not made in the style that I appreciate.

Serving type: on-tap

07-18-2011 13:29:33 | More by John_M
Photo of brandoman63
brandoman63

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

01-16-2013 23:23:18 | More by brandoman63
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

- double ipa. reported 100 ibus. bottled apr. consumed sept.

A: Murky cadmium orange in the vessel is topped off by a thick, frothy, tan head. Slow rising carbonation builds the head, lacing is speckled band with a moderate rate of retention. Covering is skim til the end.

S: Fresh citrus, pine of average strength, grapefruity toasted grains.

T: Flavor was grapefruit flower and toasted grains. Nice level of bitterness, some fresh citrusy flavor, spicy, toasted grassiness with everything blending nicely together. Woodsy toasted pine, the malting is very well done here.

M: Creamy malty, lush mouthful, tight tingly carbonationdry with a flowery citrus coating teasing the tongue. Spicy pine bite afterwards.

O: The nose could of used some more backing, but the balance of malts and hops flavor/bitterness wise made amends. The mouthful was decent. Consumed 5 months past bottling this still held up and showed a strong hoppiness with little fade. Nice balance of lightly dry bitterness mingles with some wet hoppiness with no aging effects. Maybe even better when fresh. worthy a try.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2013 22:53:14 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of mdaschaf
mdaschaf

Washington

4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to mnbearsfan for the opportunity!

A: Pours a hazy golden/orange with a white head on top, moderate retention, leaving a solid cap on top. Thin lacing forms all around the glass.

S: Lots of juicy citrus, grapefruit, orange, orange zest, and a little bit of grass. There is a little bit of bready/caramel malt on the back end.

T: More citrus fruits, similar to the aroma with orange zest and grapefruit. Very faint bready malt undertones reel this one in a bit. There is a little bit of grass on the finish.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinks smooth and easy for 9%.

O: A pretty good DIPA. Not as exciting as I was hoping, but still very good, nothing wrong with it Would be happy to drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2012 00:54:57 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of Bighuge
Bighuge

Minnesota

4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Murky looking body of orange/copper. Thin dirty white head on top. Lacing is quite full. Balanced out aroma that isn't too forward in any specific area. There's pine, but also citrus. Hop resin and also fruitiness, with tangerine and orange providing the underlying fruit aromas. Flavor is quite good and quite balanced as well. Malt base is crystal based and the hops provide a little of everything...subtly. Grassiness, bitterness, fruitiness, smokiness....good stuff all together. The bitterness is not scathing at all. It's there, don't get me wrong, but not too abrasive. This is a well done DIPA. Wouldn't expect anything else form these guys.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2010 04:14:44 | More by Bighuge
Photo of Gonzoillini
Gonzoillini

Illinois

4/5  rDev -1.5%

08-31-2013 22:07:12 | More by Gonzoillini
Photo of Latarnik
Latarnik

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -1.5%

06-01-2014 01:09:42 | More by Latarnik
Photo of zestar
zestar

California

4/5  rDev -1.5%

05-05-2014 08:36:40 | More by zestar
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz single - probably my 4th sampling of this new DIPA

appearance: tacky label featuring a bright green hop - bright orange-copper body with a nice foamy white cap and strong retention

smell: bright citrus hops - tangerine, ruby red grapefruit, pine, bready

taste: impressive DIPA from a brewery that has never really offered up a great hop-centric brew. Very fresh waves of citrus flavor - tangerine, grapefruit, orange, lemon peel, pineapple. What makes this one a little different is the spicy rye kick and rustic bready notes. I dig this one - keep the special releases coming CW

mouthfeel: big, moderate bitterness, smoothness from the abv, spicy

drinkability: good

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2010 00:54:49 | More by dirtylou
Illumination from Central Waters Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 698 ratings.