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Heavier Handed IPA - Two Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Heavier Handed IPAHeavier Handed IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

107 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 107
Hads: 322
rAvg: 4
pDev: 4.5%
Wants: 35
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
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:
Beer added by: emerge077 on 11-14-2009

Wet hopped IPA aged in new French oak tanks.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 107 | Hads: 322
Photo of Thorpe429
4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a nice moderate amber color with a tiny bit of haze. White head and some lacing. The nose is pine and citrus. Good amounts of those without much malt in the background. What is there counts toward the caramel tally board as well as some slight bread dough. The mouthfeel is good and bitter, while still a bit sweet. Drinks quite well and is a nice brew from the folks in Warrenville. (411 characters)

Photo of wedgie9
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted from bottle. Pours clear, dark, amber with a thick beige head that recedes to heavy lace. Nose is nice caramel malt with some grapefruit hops and fresh red apple. The flavors are very well balanced with hops, malt, and fruitiness coming through equally. The apple flavor is rather strong and very unique to and IPA for me. The body is medium plus with average carbonation and a long apple and bitter finish. (414 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired from pochman, courtesy of BA Secret Santa 2009 so a big "Thank You" goes out to him. Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep golden brown color, with a large dense off-white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, piney hops and citrus.

T: The taste starts out very sweet with strong flavors of caramel, brown sugar and citrus. Then a hearty malt character comes in. The hops presence takes some time to take effect and it seems rather subdued, but it's certainly there and brings a good balance. There's also a little bit of an alcohol sting which is kind of strong for a beer that is just over 8:00% ABV. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, it's a solid 2IPA to drink for a while but there are others in the style that I would choose first. (1,047 characters)

Photo of SuperNova777
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A:First Pour is a see-thru copper color; second pour is a little cloudier with a nice aggressive head to it with scattered lacing down the glass

S:At first smell I get a lot of earthy grass tones and then after that hits a nice fresh piney scent to it.

T:Quite interesting, not too much up front until it hits the back of the tongue. Then those hops start to kick in with a slight malt backbone to smooth it out. Fresh tasting hops stick to the palate, leaving a sticky pine resin and all most slight smoky finish behind. Alcohol presence is fairly well hidden.

M:Had a fairly thinner body but I don't think what such a bad thing for what it seems like they were going for, good carbonation throughout.

D:All in all a very enjoyable threat for my Sunday night, a nicely put together fresh hop IPA. Interesting taste to the brew that leaves you very intrigued and wanting a little more, easy to drink and a well hidden ABV. If you could get a bottle of this limited release I would suggest it. (996 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Heavy Handed IPA has been one-upped in this robust Double IPA. As if that's not enough, Two Brothers decides to age and dry-hop the beer in their exclusive oak foudre.

The pour delivers a hazy deep amber color, releasing a dense creamy off-white head that retains and laces extremely well. A grainy appearance is due to suspended dustiness seen through the glass.

Pine, citrus, and soft woods play at the olfactories and give impressions of caramel, toffee, and English-like fruitiness. Piney hops remind me of juniper and gin.

Lightly syrup sweetness soon gives way to intense piney and grassy (hay-like) hops and tannic/tawny wood flavors. Agressively hopped, the wood aging refines the beer with a smooth marshmallowy creamy malt flavor; somewhat cask-like.

Weighted and syrupy-oily early, the beer's alcohols and woody textures lighten the beer slightly to allow for ease of drinking.

A very nice Oak Aged Double IPA but the sweetness and weight of the beer hurt its introduction. The finish does little to promote the beer further.

Thanks again Cheezdawg! (1,070 characters)

Photo of deereless
4.18/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The head on the beer exhibits some serious staying power, significant sticky spots dot the interior of the glass, the fact that it is unfiltered explains the signs of sediment, light to medium amber in color - 4.25, S: Heavy on the malts, mild oak perceived, perhaps some slight hops but my guess is that the aging really diminished the aromatics of the hops, there is a subdued sweetness that is faintly tropical - reminds me of the mountain papaya and a little like grape, soft fig aromas as well - 4.00, T: The palate has more hops than the nose and provides a mild bitterness, the oak smoothes out the flavor and provides a nice shot of vanilla and earthiness, very malty and caramelly, quite sweet while also having a dry aftertaste - 4.25, M: Syrupy-like body, quite velvety - 4.50, D: A very pleasant union of oak and IPA, much of the hops seem to get lost with the aging but still a very satisfying beer - 4.50 (921 characters)

Photo of Murchmac
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared at a tasting with some other BA's and turned out to be an excellent brew.

White head, orange hues.

very balanced taste, hoppy fruity citrus, right amount of bitterness, caramel smells.

I've had a few beers from this brewery and none of them disappoint. (263 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to zdk9 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the orange and pine hops. The flavor is more of the same with orange and resiny hops with some oaked notes. The hop profile is heavier on the citrus hops. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. This was my first Two Brothers beer and I hope to try more from them in the future. (392 characters)

Photo of zdk9
3.45/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark orange in my Duvel glass. Shreds of head and lacing.

S- Suprisingly hoppy for an oak-aged beer. Some floralness and touches of sweet grapefruit.

T- Also way bitter. Caramel, bitter bitter pithy grapefruit.

M- Clingingly bitter.

D- If you like bitter beers this one is super bitter and for you. (305 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clouded golden/orange appearance. slim white head. lace leaving.

Gorgeously herbaceous aromatics, bristling pine, vibrant citrus. lemon and grapefruit. Mmm.

Tasting: Big bite of bitterness up front, followed by a flash of sweet, flush with flavor, filling the mouth, then slowly fading in intensity, but not without leaving hoppy trails in it's wake. Oak-aged leaves traces of woody texture, a definite difference detected. Good mouthfeel, nice play on the palate.

And every subsequent sip leaves me wanting another.
Fruit and wood join forces in every taste, hop delivery remains undeterred. Nice complexity, continues through the drinking.
Persistent puckering from never-ending hop attack.

Batch 3109, not sure what the hop was used, ..but I'm a fan of this one. I believe I'll have another. (800 characters)

Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.36/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this on 4/1 with my buddy Jeff. From notes.

Pours dark amberish orange, creamy head with nice lace. Pretty good appearance.

Wow the aroma is REALLY oaky. I mean, wood all over. Not really a distinct hoppiness, but you can still somewhat tell that there's an IPA under there... somewhere. A little more hop flavor in the taste than the aroma, but wood is still really the main component. Firm bitterness, but big caramel malt, oaky presence with piney hops. Full mouthfeel... medium bodied but somewhat exacerbated by the oaky presence. The ABV is well integrated... you can tell this is an IPA at heart, but the wood presence is just a little too potent. I would possibly be interested in trying the base beer down the line. (732 characters)

Photo of jeffthecheff
3.41/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cracked this bottle with Joe as my first winnings of my March Madness BIF.

Heavier Handed pours an opaque, hazy amber color with a good cap of white foam on top. Lacing and retention have good staying power.

The aroma is mostly oak. Not that it was out of this world strong, but it had enough to it to overpower the rest of the aroma. Behind the oaky wood, there is an IPA there, but it isn't impressive or balanced with the oak enough for me to tell you any hop attributes.

The taste is suprisingly oaky at first, but towards the end my tastebuds were numb to it. I would need a serious palate cleanser after this if I wanted more beer. It's got a woody flavor (of coarse), some slight pine sap, and a really bitter finish. Don't think the pine and wood flavors mend well together...it seemed more like a coincidence than a planned match. Overall, it's a little unpleasant.

The mouthfeel is smooth with a medium body. Carbonation is good. There is a little bit of a lingering flavor that didn't sit right with me. This beer isn't really my style, but it didn't impress me too much anywhere. It carried a good buzz factor, but I would pass on it. (1,150 characters)

Photo of portia99
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle received from AleWatcher in the "I'm never going to win one, so I'll just start one LIF". Thanks! Poured into a Dogfish Head signature glass.

A - Pours a slightly dark orange amber color, hazy with yeast, with a finger of cream colored head that dissipates quickly leaving a thin layer of bubbles with a couple of thicker islands, a thick collar and some nice lacing on the glass.

S - Nice citrusy hop aroma up front - oranges, tangerines, grapefruit...some pinapple as well. Some caramel malt, and yeasty breadlike aroma fills in behind the hops.

T - Well balanced double IPA. Citrusy hops are definitely in the forefront of things. Grapefruit taking the lead and pineapple adds a strong presence and also some apricots. Bitterness is medium high, but not overpowering. A sweet, sugary and caramelly malt backbone is solid behind the hops. Some woody oak flavor kicks in for good measure...it is subtle, but definitely there, and puts a finishing touch on this fine DIPA.

M - Medium bodied with a soft carbonation that gives this a very smooth and velvety feel in the mouth. Hop resins fill the mouth with every sip and are covered immediately by the sweet, sugary malt.

D - Very well balanced DIPA and quite drinkable. The sweet malt cuts the hops quite a bit which makes this a very smooth beer. Lots of hop flavor in this compenates for the slightly lower than typical bitterness for this style. A good one to have with a meal, will hold up to lots of different foods and complement them nicely. (1,516 characters)

Photo of koopa
3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle offered at a recent tasting by beerloco and shared with mrsbeerloco, mikey711 and myself.

Appearance: Pours a fairly attractive glowing amber with a small white crown that shows moderate carbonation and lace.

Smell: Slightly bitter hoops over loads of tea and wet grass.

Taste: Same as the nose.

Mouthfeel: Well carbonated and on the lighter side of medium bodied.

Drinkability: Sessionable for a DIPA (413 characters)

Photo of Parrotbeak
3.43/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Cloudy amber, with a thin white head that quickly becomes patchy. Decent lacing as this one goes down.
Malts dominate the smell, followed by some hops, as well as pineapple and very faint citrus.
Hops flash up front, with a strong malt backbone that dominates the taste. Overripe pineapple and citrus, with a little pine and oak on the finish.
Mouthfeel is somewhat flat and sticky. Little bit of crispness on the finish.
Okay on drinkability, but this one just seemed a bit too muddled for me. (494 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Gorgeously glowing topaz with a faint yeasty haze and polished brass trim. The milkshake creamy crown is equal parts pale orange, eggshell and ecru. It melts in appealing fashion and is beginning to decorate the glass with scads of sea foam lace.

The nose is modestly caramel malty, doesn't have a ton of oakiness, and has quite a bit of orange peel hoppiness. Two Brothers used three different hops (Willamette, Cascade, Super Galena), but only one per batch. Trouble is, they didn't put any sort of identifier on the bottle or label.

Heavier Handed IPA is the latest version of the oaked (D)IPA style to remind me that I'm not thrilled with most oaked (D)IPAs. The wood takes too much of the flavor focus away from the hops, which should have almost all of it as far as I'm concerned. That said, let's see how things shake out with time and warming.

Two Brothers says this brew is bigger than an IPA and smaller than a DIPA. To my eyes, nose and tongue, it looks, smells, tastes and feels like a DIPA. Caramel malt sweetness is at least as prominent as hop bitterness, although the alpha acids are beginning to rough up my tongue now that the middle of the bomber has arrived. For comparison's sake, this bottle is now about four months of age (early November release).

Flavors include caramel-toffee, orange peel soaked in Stolichnaya, ripe apricots and more oakiness than is optimal. Less time in the foudre (a large French oak cask used for aging wine) would have garnered the next highest score for taste and drinkability. As is, they almost got there.

The mouthfeel is solid in all respects. It's closer to DIPA than IPA, is velvety smooth and has the soft sort of carbonation that makes drinking quickly or slowly equally enjoyable. The latter is definitely the way to go.

This beer's little brother, Heavy Handed IPA, is good stuff. How one feels about Heavier Handed IPA depends on how one feels about oak-aged DIPAs in general. While it isn't a trend that I fully support, there's enough hop flavor and bitterness that I don't regret a penny of the $7.99 purchase price. (2,087 characters)

Photo of blackie
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

passes this one up in a store in ohio, but the dirtman insists...

a: snifter serving, an attractive off-white head rests on a gorgeously deep orange-amber beer, retention is good

s: hefty caramel body dressed with a big tropical hop aroma, fresh young pine, juicy mango and red grapefruit, a little booze, really enjoy the oak presence here

m: carbonation is delicate and smooth - on the lighter end of medium, body on the medium-full side but not too heavy or slick

t: big oily hop flavors applied to a formidable caramel malt base, blend of tropical citrus and young pine, mild spicy oak pulls through in the finish with a strong bitterness

d: just fine (660 characters)

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.33/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - clear, dark orange brew. Light, light tan head, thin but sticky lacing with good coverage.

Aroma - caramelly, dark fruit, figgy, juicy orange, mango.

Taste - lots of malty, biscuity depth, not often found in a DIPA. The sweetness is there, but usually for me it tends to downplay the malt character as the sugar transitions to the hops. Not so here. A lighter sweet allows good grain presence, and I dig it. The hops are citrusy, sweeter at first and growing more bitter on the swallow. Some nice oranginess stays around, pushing into that syrupy, dark fruit, barleywine-like flavor. Finishes with a light alcohol breath and some good palate drying. Is there supposed to be oak in here? Not sure if I'm tasting any of that or not. There's enough yummy beer flavor, I'm not sure if the oak is masked or just blended in to where i can't pick it out.

Mouthfeel - smooth, heavy but could be a little more sturdy. Well carbonated but comes across lighter, enhancing the smoothness.

Drinkability - a more sessionable DIPA than most, delicious stuff. (1,060 characters)

Photo of sweemzander
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle poured into a tulip. No bottled date.

(A)- Pours a cloudy amber color with red & orange highlights. Produced a large off-white head that stuck around for awhile. Left an intricate web of lacing behind.

(S)- Big burst of citrus: lime, pineapple, grapefruit, mango, lemon, & orange. Bits of wet pine and a big bitterness coming through in the finish. This is just dripping with fruity citrus.

(T)- Big & huge bittering dry hops up front. Very piney. Not as much citrus from the smell, but still present in some lime & pineapple. Some good honey/caramel-like maltiness that shows up in the middle.

(M)- A good carbonation level & balance. Has huge face melting hops with a good maltiness to even it out.

(D)- A solid DIPA with some good things going for it. Definitely has the shops to kick you in the face with a big malt backbone to even things out. Ive been very pleased with 2 Bros. offerings thus far & this does not dissapoint. (953 characters)

Photo of weatherdog
3.56/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a tulip glass

It pours a hazy burnt amber with a beige pillowy head. A huge coat of lingering lace lines the glass

The nose is pretty muted to me. Some orange and pine type hops with a large dose of malt in there.

The taste once again didn't attack me with the hops. I've had this beer on tap about 2 months ago and i remember it being much hoppier. Maybe the 2 months of aging in the bottle really killed it. The pine and orange hop is there but once again pretty muted. There is a large amount of bitterness up front but the sweet malt at the end is too much for my liking and tips the scales into almost too sweet an IPA for me. The oak is noticeable though and lends a redeeming quality to the brew and is more prevalent than in the draft version (785 characters)

Photo of prototypic
3.53/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Heavier handed pours a bronzish-brown color. It's slightly hazy and features some nice scarlet highlights with backlighting. It's topped off with a cream colored head that rises to about a finger. It dissipated quickly, leaving a moderate amount of lace clinging to the glass.

The nose alright, but isn't a stunner. Caramel and toffee notes are apparent from the first whiff. *sighs* There is a distinct oak smell that's not at all bad. Hints of vanilla follow. Hops are noted, but are way too tame. They have slight citrus grapefruit and orange scents, and are complemented with floral and piney notes. Honestly, it smells pretty well balanced. Not my favorite thing for a DIPA. Alcohol is noted, but isn't screaming. Above average sounds right.

The nose is an accurate indicator of what's to come. Heavier Handed has a somewhat sweet caramel malt base. That flavor's okay, but it really diminishes the hops' effect. The hops feature some citrus and orange flavors primarily, with a touch of pine and earthy flavors. At first it seemed bitter, but that seems to diminish quickly. Kind of weird. The oak flavor is decent enough, but it really doesn't improve it. It's just there. Not bad, but not much help either. Alcohol is stronger in flavor than the nose suggested. It's not masked very well. It's definitely warm, bordering on hot.

Heavier Handed is a misnomer in terms of body. It's on the light side of medium and feels too thin. Carbonation is mid-range. It's not bad, but it's not quite smooth. Drinkability is above average...barely. The flavor's okay, not great. I guess it goes down relatively easy. A bomber is more than enough. I wouldn't reach for another.

Two Brothers has an okay beer with Heavier Handed, but it's a little mediocre. The biggest problems are that it has too much of a sweet caramel malt flavor, a diminishing bitter kick, and a little too much alcohol flavor/warmth. Meh. It's not bad. Despite all that, it's still above average. But, I probably wouldn't pick up another bomber. Disappointing effort after the excellent Red Eye Coffee Porter. (2,081 characters)

Photo of Ryan011235
3.77/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter on 12/7/09

Copper colored with highlights of deep amber. Though slightly cloudy, it still has a sharp & enticing looking color. Unfortunately, it poured a marginal head (even with a fairly aggressive pour) that all but disappears. Period swirling revives a thin layer; such is retention. Lot of small spots of lace for the first half or so; it does have better swaths of lace by the end.

The nose is interesting; while not being overly complex, it seems well-structured. Pine aroma is at the fore - it by no means smell like a hop bomb but it should suffice. Floral with hints of mixed citrus - I'm pulling out a little bit of orange. A sweetish malt background offers up caramel & undertones of toasted bread. The smooth aroma of oak is apparent throughout & serves to sound out the rough edges.

As I suspected based on the nose, absent is a scathing hop attack. However, there is reasonable amount of piney bitterness upfront. That said; the bitterness is mostly short-lived with a tad finding its way to the finish. At this point a prominent malt profile kicks in via caramel & toasted malts. Some floral hits work their way throughout. The oak notes help pull the flavors together & provide some interesting overtones.

Heavier Handed is on the heavier side of medium bodied. Carbonation is smooth & creamy. There is quite a bit of resiny grit. It's a fairly dense brew that allows for a lot of lingering residual flavors.

I think it has good drinkability. I'm sure many will find it lacking too much in respect to hoppiness; that may be so, but it still has a good flavor profile. It's worth checking out if you get the chance. (1,659 characters)

Photo of cameraman
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A deep amber color is pored in the glass, with a thick off-white colored head, that is an inch and a half high. A grassy fragrance strikes the nose at first scent that is followed by wood esters like vanilla. Then the aroma finishes out with lemon and citrus scents. The taste has a malty sweetness then the hints of wood and vanilla come through. It all finishes with a grassy, earthy, and citrus (mostly pineapple) flavors dominate and linger on the palate. There is syrupy consistency as it touches the lips then moving towards
a medium bodied feel, gradually blending to a slightly more heavier feel. A medium dryness coats the middle of the palate and spreads to the back. This beer is definitely not a session beer, mainly due to the taste. A fragrant aroma, a hearty feel, and cornucopia of flavors, you want to just sit, sip, and savor this beer. (855 characters)

Photo of tasteegood
4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into 2 snifters. No freshness date on bottle.

A: Amber color with one finger head that holds some retention. Lacing clings to the side of the glass.
S: Fresh hops and grapefruit
T: Hoppy goodness, alcohol, and some hints of oak and a light sweetness from the malt backbone. Definitely does not taste like 80 IBU beer and the alcohol is not overwhelming.
M: Residual bitterness left in my mouth; however, it quickly dissipates to leave a nice smooth finish.
D: A nice sipper than can definitely be destroyed by one person or shared with a friend. A very palatable DIPA. (594 characters)

Photo of jwc215
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours copper with a thin tan head that holds up pretty nicely. Trailing lace follows the body down the glass.

The smell is minty/spicy with woody notes, vanilla and some citrus. Some caramel backing comes through.

This is a barley-wine-ish DIPA. Caramel, pine, vanilla/oak and fruity alcohol mingle. Sweet-ish, but with a bitterish bite that shows more in the first few sips. Oak and booze dominate as it progresses.

It hits full bodied - not too thick. Has a rawish kick, but pretty smooth despite that.

The booze and oak aftertaste. It has a strong malt, hop, oak and booze character. An interesting sipper - a pretty intense one. (636 characters)

Heavier Handed IPA from Two Brothers Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 107 ratings.