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Heavy Handed IPA - Two Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Heavy Handed IPAHeavy Handed IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

817 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 817
Reviews: 394
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 11.75%
Wants: 34
Gots: 45 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Two Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-03-2002

Heavy Handed IPA is brewed to celebrate the harvesting of the hops every year. Within moments of harvest we add freshly picked "Wet Hops" to this IPA. Since the hops have not been dried before use, they add a wonderful character found in no other beer. A hop lovers dream. (Available September through December) Each batch is "single hopped" with a different hop variety.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 817 | Reviews: 394 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SmithwicksNut
3.52/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Medium Amber color with big white head. Lacing was good on the glass.

S: Prominent hop aroma with citrusy character. Some clean malty sweetness.

T: High hop flavor that sits on the back of the mouth with a malt backbone blended well. Some clean alcohol flavor comes through.

M: A medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Smooth alcohol warming can be detected.

D: A decidedly hoppy and bitter beer. The bottle had 65 IBU with 6.7% ABV. I enjoyed the beer but not one of my foavorites.

Photo of BgThang
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

thx to tytoanderso for this as an extra in a trade

The look is that of a solid ipa with a shade of red and with a head that died fairly quickly

The aroma is maple, pine resign, malty candy hoppy

Mouthfeel is creamy and hoppy goodness with a bitter finish that lingers afterwards

This is a good ipa that I could enjoy drinking slot of

Photo of CrellMoset
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of objectivemonkey - thanks!! Poured into a traditional American pint glass.

Appearance: A slightly hazy copper-colored beer with a creamy, even one-finger tan head with average retention that leaves a huge slick of lacing and a nice ring of solid lace in its wake. Even once the drinking begins, the lacing left is really nice. Carbonation is slow and sparse. Nice looking IPA.

Aroma: The overwhelming note that I get out of this is orange juice. That pulpy, vegetal, citrusy smell that comes from a good, fresh squeezed glass. It's interesting, if a little unexpected.

Taste: Very similar to the nose - it's like a nice class of orange juice with less sweetness and a few extra leafy notes. There's also a moderate level of balancing bitterness which more than handles a fairly dry, wholesome biscuity malt backbone. The citrus melds well with the bitterness, though it doesn't seem to be as complex after a while as it initially seemed. Fortunately, it's not "too" anything - too sweet, too bitter, too dry, too puckering. Balanced.

Mouthfeel: Big bodied and creamy, prickly, a little thick.

Drinkability: By the end of this one, I was wondering if maybe this was an American IPA with Fresh-Squeezed Orange Juice Added. It was a good beer, balanced, definitely interesting, and the alcohol was also definitely not a problem at all, but this is one I'd have to be in the mood for. Maybe breakfast? Forget mimosas.

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

12oz. bottle into Troegs Hopback glass on 10/27/08. Thanks to Deuane for grabbing me one of these on a recent beer excursion.

A - Clear orangey copper body with ruby highlights, ample carbonation and thin off-white head that receded to deposit spotty lacing around the glass. Nice coloration and solid head retention.

S - Fruity aroma with hints of citrus fruit, dark cherry and berries backed by sweet caramel malts. This has quite the sweet, fruity nose with a subtle hop character.

T - Like the aroma, fruity hops prevail with juicy citrus fruit at the forefront. Caramel malt, candi sugar and sweet dried fruit balances out the citrus bitterness quite a bit.
Finishes with a toasted grainy malt aspect and some sweet caramel with just a touch of medicinal herbal hops in the backend.

M - Medium, softly carbonated body with a smooth, oily texture that develops into a fairly bristly mouthfeel. A lingering bitterness picks up steam the more you drink, resulting in a moderately dry finish with a fruity sweetness on the palate.

D - Interesting take on an IPA. Drinks more like an ESB yet still retains a fairly hoppy profile, especially in the finish.

Photo of Monkeyknife
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a clear dark brown with orange highlights and a thick foamy beige head.

Aroma of juicy citrus, floral, and piney hops, candy sugar, and sweet malts.

Tastes of sweet malts, slightly bitter citrusy hops, candy sugar, and biscuit. Overall, it tastes a bit watered down.

Lighter bodied and lightly carbonated.

More like a pale versus an ipa. On the thinner side but a pretty good drinker.

Photo of joe1510
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle
$9.99 6-Pack
Rt. 6 Liquors

Lot #2678 Baby Cascades

This fresh hopped IPA is dirty copper as it leaves the bottle and there's enough chill haze in the glass to make it hard to see through, making it murky. Tiny but lazy carbonation swirls to the surface to keep the settled cap of off white foam in place. The head grew quickly on the pour and fell slowly to its final resting place leaving patchy lacing on its way.

The aroma is sugary candy sweet. The sweetness from the malts play off the cascades and create a dried pineapple and candied orange peel that jump out of the glass. Slight spicy booze and sugar cookie maltiness come forward from the rear. The hop profile has some of that fresh leafy greenness to it from being fresh hopped.

There's not as much forward hoppiness as the nose suggested, which is somewhat of a let down. The cascades still lead the way but the margin isn't as big as I'd like. The maltiness on the tongue comes across more caramel then the sugar cookie I was expecting and the candied fruits from the aroma lead the hop charge in the flavor as well.

The body of this IPA is nicely done. Medium bodied with a velvety texture and soft carbonation that glides along the tongue. The bitterness grows as I drink but never gets very big.

Drinking a few of these in a sitting is not a problem for me. This is a sessionable IPA that doesn't beat you over the head with bitterness.

Two Brothers puts out a solid IPA every year with their separate hopped Heavy Handed IPA. None of them are spectacular but they're all good and deserving of being picked up a couple times each release.

Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark auburn in color with about an inch of head. Smell is juicy hops. Quite floral and aromatic. Taste is slightly bittering and citrusy, juicy. Decent IPA. This is really easy drinking and enjoyable. Plenty of soapy lacing sticking to the insides of the glass.

Photo of marcpal
3.42/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Two Brother pint glass.

A: Mix of crimson and gold with a hazy shade. Lid like off white head with moderate lacing.

S: Grapefruit and citrus hops. Slightly malty but dominated by the citrus bitterness.

T: Bitter but well balanced. More moderate in hoppy flavors than their DIPA, with more of a malt taste- caramely. A tasty beer, not powerful IPA and almost lowered down to a PA. Among the dryest of IPAs I can remember and not quite a fan of that aspect.

M: Light and plenty bubbly. Not oily or clingy, but a little heavy on the carbonation. Crisper than most IPAs, particularly being from Midwest.

D: Not a bad offering. One that can easily be drank over a long session. Worth a try but not quite worth seeking.

Photo of Goliath
3.47/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear dark amber, almost ruby colored with a thin quarter inch light tan head. Decent retention and a bit of lace.

The aroma is ok, but not very big. A slight hop profile with a bit of citrus and pine.

The taste is ok but weak. A really gentle hop profile with seemingly no bitterness. Seems too low for an IPA, even a Pale. In any case, it's kind of piney with a bit of light malting. Somewhat earthy and slightly metallic Really indistinct qualities.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and lightly carbonated. The feel might be the best thing about this beer.

Drinkability is fairly high. It's a simple IPA and not that great. But the flavors are not offensive so it certainly is sessionable. I just wish it were a bit more aggressive.

Photo of KarlHungus
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a semi-cloudy deep amber color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes quickly into a firm cap of lacing. The aroma is of grapefruit, pine and caramel. The taste is well rounded and balanced for an IPA. There is a lot of grapefruit, a lot of pine, and a lot of malt. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a velvety texture and nice carbonation. Overall, this is a fine IPA that I will surely drink again.

Photo of KeefD
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy dark orange/amber color with a light tan colored head that leaves some pretty nice lacing on the glass. Clean aroma of bready malt and some citric hops. Flavor has a nice dose of caramel malt, slightly bready and biscuity, followed by a nice hop bitterness, with an underlying chocolate flavor, which is different but interesting. Slightly sweet at first, bitter in the middle and dry on the finish. I like that this beer is bottle conditioned, which gives it a nice yeastiness and good carbonation. Very nice IPA, and would certainly have this one again.

Photo of DukeofAle
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I haven't reviewed for quite a while, maybe a year or more, but this beer is so exceptional - I had to put down a few lines. Purchased (along with several other brews) at Blue Max in Burnsville MN on my way home from a business trip. This beer simply has no faults of any consequence and nails the IPA style. Plenty hoppy, even for an IPA, but not over the top. Not as citrus-tasting as some. My first sample from this brewry - I'll be trying more of their offerings. Add this to my favorites.

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

Appearance: It pours a darker bronze color with a slight scarlet tint to it. It's very clear. The head is off-white with a touch of orange. It's about two fingers deep. Retention was very good and a pretty impressive web of lace lined the glass.

Smell: The nose is very citrusy and sweet smelling. There's a strong grapefruit and pineapple scent that's very refreshing and inviting. Some orange also appears to be present. It certainly smells like hops were generously added, as well. They're strong, citric, and piney. I don't know what the hop bill is, but it smells great. Smells like there's a good amount of caramel malts in the mix. The smell is secondary to the hop aroma, but I'm curious to see if it's balanced. I'm hoping it's not. All in all, it's a pretty good smelling beer.

Taste: Grapefruit, pineapple and orange citrus flavors are sweet initially. They've got a good, refreshing flavor. Makes me wish I was on vacation. Caramel malts actually follow up the citrus blast. They add more sweetness. Hops are citric and piney. They have an excellent bitter taste. But, that fine bitter flavor is negated a good bit by the malts. It's not balanced and has a residual hoppy flavor, but they're obviously minimized to a degree. It's just a little too much malt for me. There's an interesting, very light dark fruit flavor that emerges very late. It tastes like raisin. An odd, but interesting element here.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's medium bodied and has a nice feel. It's smooth and goes down easy. Carbonation is active and gives it a bit of crisp bite. I wouldn't characterize it as silky, but it's a nice feel. Drinkability is good. It is easy to drink, but there's two handfuls of IPAs out there that I prefer to it. It's not a bad choice, but there's much better out there.

Two Brothers has crafted a pretty good IPA with Heavy Handed. At the end of the day, there's a little too much malt for my preference, but it's not a bad beer at all. The hops are fine and have a nice flavor. Just less malt, please. Definitely worth checking out if you're into a more balanced IPA.

Photo of bonbini26
3.51/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on cask @BTAH 10-12-08

A- Murky Red/ copper in colour. Tight off-white head. Fades to a thin cover that lasts 'til the end. Good lace.

S- Citrus, orange peel. Tangerine, grapefruit. some bread, even pumpkin notes

Taste: Very fruity and citrusy. Biscuity malt in the background. The flavours are the same as the aroma. Moderate bittering, most of the hops used were aromatic/flavouring hops. A nice balance

Mouthfeel: Soft, but lively carbonation. Classis cask conditioned mouthfeel. Lots of small bubbles. Medium bodied. Nice hop balance not overpowering easy drinking

OVerall, a decent cask IPA, ive had much better where the hops come out more aggressively, this one was a little on the light side for me

Photo of jraycee
3.57/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a little hazy into pint glass a rust colored amber. Very thin head that doesn't stick around too long but the ring leaves tiny lacing.
Smell is citrusy, with a fresh mowed lawn smell and a bit of woodsy pine.
At first taste I am fairly impressed with the balance this beer shows up front. The grassy grapefruit hops are held up well by a nice toast and caramel malt base which kinda reminds me of captains wafer crackers. The fresh hops come back in the end with a big bitter grapefruit rind flavor. A resiny aftertaste.
Mouthfeel is kinda sticky and dry.
Drinakbility is average. The overall dryness surprises me and might keep me from drinking more than one a sitting.

Photo of mnj21655
3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass

Pours a clear and vibrant reddish-copper in color with about a finger of dense, somewhat creamy light tan head. Aroma is nice, piney and slightly citrusy hops upfront with an underlying malty sweetness that becomes a bit more evident as I continue to sip this brew. Taste is a bit like the aroma but the hop flavor is "sturdier" here and doesn't fade. The hop flavor is distinctly piney with mere suggestions of citrus. There is certainly a good malt backbone to this brew but the hops are the focus. At first I found this beer a bit sweet but as I drink it seems drier. Bitterness is solid but not overwhelming. With every sip I seemed to discover a new flavor or layer of complexity to this brew. Mouthfeel is good with a medium-light+ body with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is quite good. I happened to pick this up on a recommendation from Jamie at PHP and I was certainly not disappointed. This is a flavorful, easy drinking IPA that I'm glad to have tried.

Photo of oakbluff
3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Lot 2678- via piscator34- thanks Kris. Appearance- cloudy dark orange/red grapefruit, minimal head. Nose- sharp citrus and some toasty malt. Taste- hoppy twang initially which is quickly overtaken by chewy caramel malts. Quite thick in body for size of beer. Finishes with earthy dryness. Didn't have the fresh hop character I thought it would. More malts than hops in this brew

Photo of UA8
4.59/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a hazy amber color with a creamy off white head.

S- Smells like the rind of a clementine, aka heavy on the citrus hops, sweet citrus with a slight ruby grapefruit backer.

T- A very nicely balanced effort. Leads with orange rind and grapefruit, mid palate is a nicely roasted malts and then finishes with highly resinous and biting hops.

M- Starts velvety and full with a very nice mouth coating texture.

D- This is a really good IPA. Runs up there with the best of them and nears being a DIPA. Very tasty and sessionable.

Photo of dancinwillie
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich amber, with tight beige head. Good head retention, some bigger bubbles popping slowly, leaving a rocky presentation.

Aroma is sticky pine resin, and with an underlying citrus smell. Also a good amount of the malt coming through.

First taste reveals hops of course, piney and citrusy, as noted in the aroma, but also a very good showing from the malt. Pretty balanced, with the hops proving a bit stronger, as should be expected. Very bitter on the front end, with the malt soothing the tongue on the back. Citrus becomes more pronounced as the beer warms up.

Creamy, thickish mouthfeel, bitter finish.

Overall a good drinker, probably won't blow your mind, but a very tasty, sessionable beer that is well crafted.

Photo of AylwinForbes
4.87/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Drank at source, served at cellar temperature in a 16 oz glass. This is kind of drinking experience is why one goes to the pub rather than stay at home and save money with a sixer. There is no substitute for a well-made beer served from the cask. An everyday experience in the old country, it is relatively rare here. Fortunately we live near the Two Brothers and there is always one on the cask.

It turns out there are several batches of the Heavy Handed made this year using different species of hops. The tap version was made with different hops from the ones (Cascade) that appear in the cask form. The difference is profound.

Beer appears almost clear warm walnut color with about a half inch of thick creamy head. Ebullient perfumed aroma fills the glass. On the palate there is a wonderful balance of fresh fruit (a hint of citrus but not overwhelming) and long-lasting bitterness.

It's not really high alcohol, but stronger than the average IPA I think; but it goes down with breathtaking ease. Dangerously so.

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

Had this on tap today at Sheffield's in Chicago.

A= This ale poured a nice deep reddish copper color color with a 1/2" off-white head. The head quickly dropped to a skim and left a nice web of lace down the glass.

S= I found the obvious pine and citrus hops notes up front but also discovered a big ticket of caramelly malts too.

T= Much like with the nose, this produced piney citrus hop flavors with a moderate bitterness. On the sweet side, a bit of toasted grain flavoring and bakery malts balanced the hops quite well.

MF= Medium everything (carbonation, body, feel).

D= Definitely an easy drinking IPA. I appreciated the balanced hop flavors, bittering, and aroma. While I don't feel that this is a standout IPA, it is certainly a damn good one.

Photo of Jerzy86
3.57/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I like this beer a lot, but there's something with about it that just doesn't fit. I think that the malts may be overpowering the hops a little, but the hops are definitely there. Two brothers makes a great beer in general. I just like a more crisp and fruity IPA... But a great drink; would recommend...

Photo of SRFeldman79
4.08/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle, poured into a pint glass.

Pours a great orange-red color that I've started to associate with maltier, more balanced IPAs. Nice 1/2 inch head, a creamy looking light tan (can't think of a better word at the moment) one that slowly falls back into the beer. Fair amount of bubbles hints at a decent amount of carbonation, and I've always found Two Brothers' beers to have just the right amount of carbonation.

Smells delicious. The hint of toasted and/or caramel malt goes nicely with a piney hop aroma. Definitely smells sweet too.

The first sips evoke a sticky pine needles, good bitterness, and a definitely caramel-sweet and earthy hop flavor. I understand this is U.S. Tettnang hops for the "wet" hopping that is the trademark of Heavy Handed, and I definitely want to experiment with this hop on my own. Perfect carbonation for an IPA. The toasted caramel hinted at in the aroma is mostly noticeable in the aftertaste, along with hops bitterness.

Definitely easy to drink two of these, but then, depending on your tolerance for the bittersweetness of this beer, you might need to make a beer change.

Photo of orcasteve
3.66/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

a very yeastey ipa that has a great color and flavor, this is hoped to a nice citrus stile bitter finish, the malts in this one have a flavor of apples in the begining. ther is suttle sour hints in this one from start to finish. this is a decent example of this stile of beer that i am extreamley happy to have goten to try this brew. hope to have more in the future

Photo of barefootbrewer
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This beer poured a golden color with a huge creamy head.

S: The aroma is sweet with hops quite noticeable.

T: This brew is hoppy and bitter, but it also has a nice balance from the sweetness of the malt.

M: Medium-full bodied...lush!

D: Good balance makes this an easy brew to drink. I'd definitely buy this by the 6-pack if given the opportunity.

Heavy Handed IPA from Two Brothers Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 817 ratings.