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Heavier Handed IPA - Two Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Heavier Handed IPAHeavier Handed IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

252 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 252
Reviews: 102
rAvg: 4.05
pDev: 8.89%
Wants: 35
Gots: 7 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Two Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Wet hopped IPA aged in new French oak tanks.

(Beer added by: emerge077 on 11-14-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 252 | Reviews: 102 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of aerozeppl

New York

4.22/5  rDev +4.2%

A: Just about picture perfect deep copper color with nice looking tight lacing. On the glass I can see each sip I have taken. Really cannot ask for much more out of an IPA.

S: Big hop bomb right up front. You do get the oak a little behind that. Quite subtle but I think it works well for the beer overall.

T: The taste is just really nice. Big hops with quite a bit of citrus. Little bit of orange in there as well. The oak and the hope are in perfect balance.

M: The best part of the beer. Very creamy while still having a touch of that hop thickness you want.

D: I really enjoyed this beer. I have enjoyed everything I have had from them and this is no exception.

12-16-2009 01:00:34 | More by aerozeppl
Photo of Dotcubed


4.3/5  rDev +6.2%

A big bottle of IPA can be a potent thing.
Too much of a good thing? Can't wait to find out.

Opened without much gas. Could be flatter than I'd like.
No date on the bottle so I assume it's a fairly recent release.
Fluff of foam came down to a nice ring of lace.
Amber color.

Resin scent. Reminds me of the bow rosin for string instruments.

Fresh flavor, Medium-heavy body. Not something that you find often, long mild hop flavor that isn't overwhelming. Piney.
Clearly more of a show piece. And it has the taste to back it.
The oak mellowed it, probably gave it a nice dark amber color.

Good low carbonation. Not a problem drinking this one, not like some IPAs. Just be prepared to pay for it in $$$$

12-15-2009 04:19:59 | More by Dotcubed
Photo of brow1901


4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

A- Clear medium amber copper color with a bone white one finger head. Good retention with some very pretty lacing.

S- Primarily earthy hops in the nose. It's a rather spicy hop smell kinda tingles the nostrils, I attribute this to the fresh hops used. The normal lemongrass citrus smell of fresh hops isn't around in this beer, perhaps its a bit too old.

T- Very light and smooth, not nearly as much of a hop bite as one would expect from the smell. Not picking up the oak really but the aging I'm sure accounts for the smoothness and toned down bitterness. The beer finishes with just a hint of sweetness left on the tongue.

M- Nothing really exciting to report, medium thickness I would classify as standard for double IPA's. I do like how it leaves the mouth mostly dry but just slightly slick, its a nice touch.

D- good drinkability, you would never guess this beer was 8% and it ends up sneaking up on you. Good smooth flavor that won't wreak your paleate, and I like the 22oz serving.

12-14-2009 02:37:37 | More by brow1901
Photo of paco1029384756


3.55/5  rDev -12.3%

Pours a nice copper orange color with one finger of fluffy, sticky white head.

Scent of bitter, grassy hops, caramel, sugars, and a hint of oak. Nice and hoppy with well hidden alcohol, but the sugar is too strong.

Taste of caramel, some spicy hops, and a hint of earth. It should not taste like this for being so fresh. It tastes as if it is already a few months old.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and clean with a good bite from teh carbonation.

12-12-2009 00:44:24 | More by paco1029384756
Photo of bonk0076


4.47/5  rDev +10.4%

Pours a slightly hazy reddish/mahogany color with a sticky white head. Aroma is dominated by pine and grapefruit notes with of caramel underneath it. Taste is dominated by hop bitternesss but balanced nicely but not completely by caramel malt. Finishes very short but sweet, literally.

12-10-2009 03:48:21 | More by bonk0076
Photo of optiontwo


3.63/5  rDev -10.4%

Two Brothers Heavier Handed

First review I've done in a while, excited for this one.

Appearance: Glowing yet hazy orange/amber with a ¼ off white head that dissipated fairly quickly but left sticky lacing all around the tulip I poured it into.

Smell: Pungent fruity hops are definitely there, giving it an orangey/pineapple like aroma. The hop fragrance is very juicy smelling, makes my mouth water. There is also a subtle scent of vanilla that goes along nicely with the fruit.

Taste: The hop flavor is a little spicier than I expected seeing as they smelled sweet and fruity, but that's not a bad thing. The oak aging is way less detectable than I would prefer. Maybe they could have aged it longer, or maybe I could have held on to the bottle for a while. Now that I think about it, it does seem a bit contradictory to age a fresh hop beer. But I'm no beerologist, maybe they know something I don't. There's lots of bitterness to this one, which is very enjoyable. Finish is long and lingering.

Mouthfeel: If anything I think the oak aging added more to the mouthfeel than it did the flavor. I don't know if that's even possible but it feels creamier than the normal heavy handed. So that's nice.

Drinkability: Wouldn't guess that it sits at 8.1% ABV so that earns it some points. That being said I could probably force myself to drink two, but no more after that.

Overall: This is certainly not a bad beer, and it's definitely a good one for hopheads, but I find myself slightly let down by the lack of flavors the oak should have imparted. All in all it's no oak-aged Unearthly, but then again, what is?

12-09-2009 19:34:18 | More by optiontwo
Photo of rhoadsrage


4/5  rDev -1.2%

(Served in a snifter)
A- This beer has a dense deep orange body wit a thick foam of light tan on top. There are strands of microbubbles glidng to the surface.
S- This beer has a perfume green hop aroma with a soft oak hint burred in the background and finishes with a pine green hop note that grows a bit when warm.
T- This beer has a rich creamy caramel sweet malt flavor with a soft hop finish that is green and pin with a slight grassy note. There is a pungent green flavor that lingers a bit and grows more as the beer warms.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat noted.
D- There is a nice full green hop flavor with a mild bitterness making it a good IPA, but nothing special. Especially for the price and hype on the bottle. I didn't really notice much wood either.

12-07-2009 22:12:03 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of TaddyPorter


4.38/5  rDev +8.1%

We went on a random pre-birthday drive yesterday, and ended up amidst the strip malls of Blacklick, home to Blacklick Wine & Spirits. Their beer guy drew my attention to this, and since oak-aged IPAs and Two Brothers have done me so well in the past, I figured I couldn't go wrong. I was right! Great birthday present to myself. From the bottle: "This Artisan Beer is in celebration of our new French oak tanks, called 'Foudres'." I can't wait to enjoy some more brews out of those delicious foudres in the future. This one was foudrin' awesome!

A tawny golden brew with plenty of head retention. Maybe I expected less head retention because of the oak, but I should've reminded myself it wasn't whiskey-barrel-aged, just oaked. All around inviting to the eye.

Powerful piney hops dominate the nose of this beer, with a bit of sweetness from the malt that is quickly washed over by more hoppy tang. Rebecca described the smell as green, dank, and earthy. Cannabis-like, hop-oil scents float all over this one, provided by the "wet hops from Washington state" described on the bottle.

The taste is not as dominated by the hops as the scent would suggest, and the drying pucker of the oak comes through quickly to make its presence known. The tannins of the oak and dry woodiness come clearly through, making this a beautiful and successful example of oak aging for me. Truly a luscious wood-aged beer, and I'm happy to see more things getting aged on oak than just imperial stouts.

Smooth, fairly light on the carbonation, and again dominated by the dry pucker of oak.

I could drink this one all the time, absolutely delicious from start to finish, and the oakiness and hops continue to release nuances as it warms up. It would go great with stinky cheese or something sweet like chocolate and raisins. It has plenty of flavor to stand up to a pungent dish, but is certainly delicate and enjoyable enough to savor on its own.

12-06-2009 23:37:57 | More by TaddyPorter
Photo of EJNibs


3.68/5  rDev -9.1%

A: Warm amber color. Holds its head fairly well, with nice lacing.

S: Nice, floral hop aroma. Not terribly intense--nor complex--but a nice nose nonetheless.

T: Honestly, somewhat disappointing. One-dimensional hop bitterness. This is an example of the intense bitterness and sometimes heavy feeling of hops that I tolerate without the citrus or floral notes that I love. The hops are dark and heavy on the palate; a tongue bruiser in less than an ideal sense. I know some folks love that, but not me. I think that a DIPA/IIPA should, indeed, be intensely hoppy, but these hops lack complexity; it's just bitter.

M & D: Full and frothy mouthfeel that isn't too heavy. The hops TASTE heavy in the full bitterness without floral or citrus balance sense, but the mouthfeel doesn't sit too deep, keeping it decently drinkable.

12-04-2009 03:53:03 | More by EJNibs
Photo of Vonerichs


4.03/5  rDev -0.5%

The body is a deep rusty orange with an absolutely huge head. The lacing is heavy and stays packed on the sides of the glass all the way through the last drop.

The smell starts with a pleasant vanilla sweetness, then the hops bust through. There's a pointed earthy spice, pine needles, and a floral aroma.

The taste does not carry as much oak as I anticipated, and in a good way. The oak lends just a light vanilla sweetness that cuts down on the bitterness of the hops. The hops were mostly of the pine and floral variety, giving a perfume aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is crisp with a dry finish.

I would have never guessed this is 8.10 abv. The oak seems to smooth this out quite a bit.

12-03-2009 03:05:45 | More by Vonerichs
Photo of bruachan

District of Columbia

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

bought this bad boy from the brewery. quite excited am i

poured a cold-hazy red-amber with a head low on quantity but insistent. quality lacing. and ooooeeee does what emerges from the foam smell damn nice: metric tonnes of wet hop dry hopping: sweeet tangerine citrus, sticky pine. honestly, this might be the finest hop aroma i've experienced in a beer. i can't prove that but i'll claim it now and do the research later. NOTE: i am not, in this analysis, advocating proponence in the more-is-better school of domestic craft beers; this one just has incredible nuance

a fine malt springboard is in place, i should mention, off of which the hops do their aerial magic. bitterness can't wait until the finish, its typical spot in the tasting chronology, to assert itself (though it cannot be appreciated in its fullness until the end). next up is fantastic bright fruit elements. the malts come next with a brief butterscotchy appearance, but gives way to more hop imperialism that imposes its will upon the cosmos of my glass. sweet juicy citrus

that's the best hop performance i've witnessed in quite some time. if only they'd let me fill a growler with it!

12-01-2009 03:21:04 | More by bruachan
Photo of jsh420


4.03/5  rDev -0.5%

pours a very dark copper orange with a 2 + finger head that leaves rings all down the glass - its a very clear beer for being unfiltered

smell is not very strong but a good presence of pine and grapefruit

taste - i dont taste the difference between this and the regular heavy handed - where is the oak? still good but

mouthfeel is very creamy and smooth bu t not flat

drinkability is good - but i would rather save some cash and drink heavy handed

11-30-2009 05:10:58 | More by jsh420
Photo of jrallen34


4.2/5  rDev +3.7%

I drank this from a 22oz bottle into my Rochefort glass.

The beer pours a dark orangy brown with a very light tan head that disappointly rises only half a finger and is gone immediately. The lacing is light.

The aroma is light for a dipa, there is a light sweet citrus to start then you get some hops, alcohol, and soap.

The taste is spot on with the aroma a little sweetness on the front, in the middle you get a lot of alcohol mixed with some hops and it finishes with a light hoppiness.

The mouthfeel is real viscous and lasting.
This beer is drinkable but you probably wouldn't drink more than a bottle yourself.

11-30-2009 01:44:16 | More by jrallen34
Photo of PrinceDarren


3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

On tap at Brixies. Pours orange/amber. Smells very soapy.

Tastes decent, but still a little soapy. I don't detect any wood notes which is probably because it was actually aged in foudres as opposed to oak barrels (in other words, they did not use bourbon barrels or similar). I think the term "oak aged" is a bit misleading since the foudres are not meant to be reflected in the taste profile.

Mouthfeel is a touch on the syrupy side but still reasonably drinkable.

It think the following description from their website describes it accurately: "It is sort of a bigger IPA or smaller double IPA whichever way you want to look at it."

11-28-2009 19:57:56 | More by PrinceDarren
Photo of GbVDave


4.28/5  rDev +5.7%

Poured from a 22oz bomber into two generic goblets. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours a hazed, honey-brown color with a full two-fingers of light-orange colored foam on top. Head retention is excellent and it painted a bunch of lacey ropes and spatters all over the inside of the glass.

S: Delicious aromas of piney hops, blended with some vanilla, caramel, and a touch of alcohol. Gains a touch of brown sugar and tropical fruit as it warms.

T: See above. The only reason it doesn't score higher, to us, was that little boozy zing that got a tad too noticable the warmer it got.

M: Very sticky and juicy. I think we detected a bit of spicy oakiness. Hops are very fresh and pungeant.

D: We loved this beer! We also like how it seems like Two Brothers is throwing everything in their new Foudres!

11-28-2009 00:50:17 | More by GbVDave
Photo of Billolick

New York

4.1/5  rDev +1.2%

22 ounce bomber, pours hazed darker almond amber, with a dark orangy hue. Respectable, daker khaki head, stays around forever, thick collar, sheeting and plenty of bits of lace left behind. The old sniffer picks up a healthy dose of resiny and pine soaked hops, and a base layer of sweet malt. Dangerously easy drinking DIPA. A little less then full bodied, but flavorful and quite enjoyable. Crunching, citric hops abound, balanced out just a bit by whole wheat crust infused malts. Love the style, this one is smooth and easily approachable, well worth a try. Served as a fine night capper after a day of Thanksgiving eating and imbibing

11-27-2009 04:51:08 | More by Billolick
Photo of BeerFMAndy


4.47/5  rDev +10.4%

22 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. 19.2 degrees plato, 84.3 IBUs, 8.1% ABV, "unfiltered", "oak foudre aged", and "fresh hop harvest". Space for a date but none printed there.

A - The beautiful beer is an orange amber accented by golden highlights and slightly hazed by tiny floating particles. The head rose up to just under two-fingers fairly quickly. It went down with moderately slow speed and left two stages of off-white lacing in the glass.

S - The aroma is so fresh it's reminiscent of picking my Cascade and Chinook hops; resins coating my fingers. Fresh and moist, the American-smelling hops are bursting at the seams like the way they are portrayed in the label art. Lots of resiny pine, a mellow grapefruit citrus, and a perfumy floral aroma. A slight herbal spice is hinted at too. The malts are buff too, giving the hop nose a solid backbone to rely on. A strong malty sweetness of caramel and honey with a flaky, biscuity nose. A small earthy wood hint is there from the oak foudres (I would assume). Very well balanced and aromatic without a slap to the face like most other DIPAs.

T - As the aroma suggests, this is both a more mellow but complex beer as well as being very nicely balanced. A sweet malty beginning of biscuits drizzled with honey is slowly overtaken by the oaky hop flavor. A lot of earthy notes pull out of it like the oak foudres, resiny pine-needle flavor, and floral and herbal hints. The citrusy grapefruit flavor is last to come across and is met with a bit of pineapple. Both leave a dryness in their stead that combats the sweet malts.

M - This full-bodied DIPA has a lot going on in the mouth. The sweetness rounds it out and balances it well as well as making it fairly smooth. The hops give the finish a nice dry feel and lingering moderate bitterness that seems to get more intense moments after the swallow. Nicely carbonated for a lively feel.

D - Another superb beer from Two Brothers, it's extremely well-crafted and delicious. One I was surprised to see and happy that I grabbed. A great sipper and a good beer to coax less hop-inclined drinkers into the world of DIPAs (as if they would start there anyway). I'll need to collect a few more on my next run south.

11-24-2009 04:52:18 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of barnzy78


4.28/5  rDev +5.7%

12oz served in a snifter at The Bavarian Lodge - Lisle, IL

Poured a deep, rusty, orange-amber color with a foamy off-white head. Retention was good, and the lacing was fantastic! With each sip, a new ring of lacing was left around the glass - definitely nice to look at. Aromas of citrus, caramel, and toasty malt filled the nose. Flavors were full and complex with notes of caramel and some citrus with hints of mild oaky vanilla and slight toasted grain. A large dose of pine is present from the start and was carried through to the finish providing some astringency and bitterness. Nice balance here. Mouth-feel was somewhat on the thin-to-medium side when chilled, but as it warmed it became fuller. Overall, very impressed with the fresh hop - oak aged offering. I wasn't sure what to expect, but this was very well done!

11-23-2009 05:20:41 | More by barnzy78
Photo of brewdoc75


3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

A: Orange-amber. Mild to moderate carbonation. Awesome, fluffy, off-white head.

S: Orange, citrus, and a hint of pine. Slight caramel sweetness. A bit light in aroma.

T: Nice flavors in here. Light hoppy flavors with citrus and orange. The caramel malts are prominent and lovely. The hops trend to a faint bitterness. The oak flavors are very light and lend a faint vanilla flavor and some woody character. Would have expected more french oak character, but the subtlety worked out nicely.

M: Medium to heavy bodied. Smooth with light carbonation.

D: A nice drinkable, in-between IPA-DIPA. The oak adds some uniqueness. I wish the hop flavors and aromas were a bit more prominent. Otherwise, it was rock solid.

11-22-2009 00:29:26 | More by brewdoc75
Photo of nkersten


4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

A- Poured from bottle into NB tulip. Dark golden, almost amber color with a moderate head that fades just enough to cover the top of the beer for the remainder of the glass. Great lacing.
S- Lots of piney hops, a little bit of alcohol and minimal oak.
T- Excellent hop flavor, lots of pine and some tropical fruit. The oak is very understated and adds a hint of vanilla sweetness. These two flavors somewhat overpower the malt, but it is exactly what I would expect from an oaked IPA. I am very happy to taste the oak after the hops, more of a compliment then a showcase.
M- Medium body with just the right amount of carbonation. A little alcohol heat.
D- This an excellent IPA that doesnt overpower in any way like some do. Could easily finish the bomber on my own. If you get a chance to try this one I recommend it. Can't even imagine how good this would be from a cask.

11-21-2009 05:27:43 | More by nkersten
Photo of ChuggyMcBeer


4.08/5  rDev +0.7%

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

A: Deep copper with two fingers of sticky head.

S: Hop forward with a lot of sweetness in the back.

T: A little less hoppy than anticipated. I get a bit of piney hops, but the hop flavor is pretty mellow, with a sweet honey and malty flavor asserting itself.

M: Slick and a bit oily.

D: Goes down easy, which is mostly a byproduct of its unaggressive hop flavor.

11-21-2009 02:31:37 | More by ChuggyMcBeer
Photo of AgentZero


4.22/5  rDev +4.2%

Beer buyer at a store recommended this to me as something new. Was in the mood for an IPA so thought I'd give it a go.

A - Much darker than I was expecting, reddish brown, dark amber. Nice soapy two finger head that left some very solid lacing down the sides as it dissipated.

S - For an extreme IPA the hops in these are definately present, but nicely mellowed, maybe it's the oak influence? Nice light fruity hints, can't tell what it is, pine notes are there, but not overpowering, great balance.

T - Alright, you definately get the hops, but I actually taste malts in this, it's so nicely impressive for such an "extreme" beer. I think the oak really takes the edge off the pine and hops notes. Even get a little vanilla in there, very pleasantly balanced although very hoppy as well. Does have the nice bitter twist at the end.

M - Very resiny, it almost coats itself and then breaks into a somewhat oily feeling liquid. Not unpleasant, works well for this brew. Heavier end of medium bodied.

D - Pretty drinkable for something that is this hoppy, could do another bomber, which says a lot for this brew. Surprisingly complex for this type of beer.

11-18-2009 04:21:35 | More by AgentZero
Photo of MasterSki

Ontario (Canada)

4.2/5  rDev +3.7%

Picked up a super-fresh bomber at Armanetti's today. Shared with d0b and served in my Kuhnhenn tulip glass.

A - This is one dark brew - transparent mahogany/amber body with a big conical stream of tiny bubbles rising up the top of the glass. Two fingers of orange-tan foam that laves nice concentric rings of lacing and dissipates slowly to a thick cap.

S - Tropical hoppiness, sharp oak spice, a hint of pine, some light vanilla, and a nice toasted bread malt and caramel backbone. The nose isn't super big and the hops smell faded, which isn't surprising considering this was oak-aged.

T - The taste starts with a nice mix of vanilla and melon sweetness, but then quickly morphs into some sharp wood flavor. There is fairly strong residual hop bitterness mixed with some tannic notes, but it's under control and dissipates fairly quickly. The malt backbone is even further in the backdrop, with a bit of bread and not much else. I'm not getting a ton of dry hop character.

M - Slick, oily, hop resins. Smooth, medium body. A bit of warming, but not too hot. Lower carbonation.

D - My 11oz went down pretty fast. It's an interesting and pretty unique DIPA compared to the other local selections. I'm not generally a huge lover of oak-aged/barrel-aged hoppy beers (other than Exponential Hoppiness), but this is a pretty successful one.

11-16-2009 23:36:44 | More by MasterSki
Photo of bluemoonswoon


4.18/5  rDev +3.2%

22oz bomber picked up at the brewpub.

A: Pours a slightly hazy burnt orange with reddish pink highlights, honey yellow with a heavy dose of orange. Head is thick, dense and incredibly stick, leaves behind a ring of lacing after each sip.

S: Ripe melons and pine, there seems to be less of an oaky sweetness evident in the bottle than the on tap version.

T/MF: The oakiness comes through more in the flavor than in the aroma, it adds an underlying creamy smoothness to the rougher edges of pine and sweet, ripe melons. It acts as a kind of butter that slides over the dank hops and waves of gooey malt sweetness. The feel of this thing reminds me more of an American barleywine than an IPA, feels dense, sticky and chewy with only an inkling of dryness near the finish.

D: Each sip is a pleasure and brings forth wave after wave of fresh, sticky hoppiness. But in terms of rating to style this beer is a bit of a tweener, it drinks and tastes heavier than the majority of IPAs but not as over the top as a DIPA. Whatever this beer wants to call itself is fine by me. Also I think I like this beer better out of the bottle, but I'd like to give it another try just to be sure. Great beer regardless, can't wait to see what else they have planned with these fouders.

11-15-2009 05:05:03 | More by bluemoonswoon
Photo of jwinship83


3.93/5  rDev -3%

22oz bomber bought and drank the same day it hit the shelves in my local store. poured into my sierra nevada hop tulip glass.

A- this one pours out a clear but dark golden amber colored body with a small eggshell colored head. the head fades quickly, but leaves solid rings of lacing behind.

S- starts out with caramel malts. theres some oak/vanilla in the middle. finishes with citrus and pine hops.

T- as with the smell, it starts out with a decent amount of sweet caramel malts. the oak aging comes through as well with some vanilla and oak. slightly astringent. lots of piny hops and a little bit of citrus at the end.

M- medium bodied with a nice subdued level of carbonation.

D- easy to finish and it leaves me wanting some more. glad i didnt have to split this with someone. an interesting approach to fresh hopped beer. the oak in this one wasnt as overpowering as some of the oak aged IPAs ive had. good to see that.

11-14-2009 19:24:42 | More by jwinship83
Heavier Handed IPA from Two Brothers Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 252 ratings.