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Great Lakes Silver & Gold IPL - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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Great Lakes Silver & Gold IPLGreat Lakes Silver & Gold IPL

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BA SCORE
86
very good

363 Ratings
THE BROS
87
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 363
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 10.44%
Wants: 15
Gots: 23 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 06-18-2013

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 363 | Reviews: 76
Reviews by DeFaz:
Photo of DeFaz
4.21/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours with a moderate head leaving lacing with excellent retention. Tiny bubbles swim frantically to the surface.

Smell: Great complex smell. Pine and citrus are present, but there are more.

Taste: Pine, citrus, bread, grass, and some alcohol bite. Clean, balanced, complex, well thought out.

Mouthfeel: Pretty much perfect. Mouthfeel is medium/thick with carbonation on the lower side. It has just enough creaminess and while the hops linger in the mouth for a while and leave some dryness, this beer goes down quite easy for a strong and fairly thick brew.

Overall: Great Lakes is a company that seems to always deliver. While I'm usually not into the hoppier beers, I appreciate the complexity of this one and how, even with the bitterness of the hops, I can walk away feeling that everything is balanced and I want more.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Happy 25th Ann. to this old school midwestern brewery wich I still think is the best of the mid west...and Iam from Michigan!Poured into a becker a deep rich golden/copper with a large fluffy two finger white head that left multiple broken rings of lace as it settled.Caramel and doughy malts stand out most in the nose with a shot of spicy hops,to me it's like an amped up Vienna style lager in the nose.a smooth feel to the beer with just the right feel.Flavors of caramel and boozy fruit,the doughiness is alot like a bigger pale bock,the hops give a mildly citric but more spicy finish.This is a cool lager,it's Vienna like at one momint and maibock in another,then a big shot of hops come.Iam warming to this style a little and this beer helps.

Photo of tectactoe
3.59/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Almost completely opaque... not unappealing, per se, I guess I just wasn't really ready for it. Huge orange and copper body, even with some nearly red tints outlining the edges. Big-bubbled head, sloppy and dingy white in color; quick to reduce to a skin with a fair amount of wet spots that are left dripping down the sides of the glass.

Lots of faint citric hops in the almost, almost with a dank-ish character to them... Juicy, in a strange way with a fairly sizable malty underbody. Toasted, baked bread with a solid amount of caramel and Munich-smelling malt. It smells decent, sure, but does little to distinguish itself as a lager, or even as the "hoppy lager" it claims to be. It's hoppy, sure... but so what?

The first sip is pretty thin and crisp with a raunchy bitterness and a rush of hops that quickly creeps in; peppery, mildly dank, and full of wet, herbal hop oils. It's more "hoppy" on the palate than on the note, though some citric character was lost in translation (there is, however, a faint citrus pith and peel character that adds more to bitterness than actual flavor, it seems).

Once the hops run their short-lived course, the malts squeak their way into the mix; lots of toasted bread and only a very, very light amount of caramel malt here. Not as sweet as the nose implied, which, in my mind, is a good thing. Crisp, clean, bready finish from the yeast, although this beer has little else to discern it as a lager. Dry mouth feel, thin bodied and heavily carbonated.

It's a decent beer, and perhaps I'm being a little hard on it because I expect great things from Great Lakes, but there are too many other, rising "IPLs" out their now to ever really justify picking this one up again (especially with the price). Vapid lager qualities and not too standout-ish in the hop bill, either. It's okay, it really is, but I expect more from these guys.

Photo of generallee
3.59/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. The label lists the abv at 7.5% and there is a short description of the beer.

Appearance: It has a golden honey amber color with a slight haze. This is with a small creamy off white head. The head has good retention as a keeps a thin lacy covering all the way to the finish.

Smell: The aroma is mostly about its hops. There are earthy notes as well as piney and leafy hop notes with a touch of pineapple like notes as well.

Taste / Palate: The taste is the same with a smooth feel and mild bitterness in the finish.

Photo of Jason
3.87/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date.

Clear brassy color, tight tiny bubbled lace holds together well. Aromas of citric hops, alcohol, biscuity malt, grass, mint and peach pits. Smooth with an ample crispness, full-ish body. Agressive hop bitternes, warming alcoholic bite, grassy grain and a hint of yeast make for a pretty damn complex brew especially being that the flavor go well together. Herbal citric hop flavor is semi-pungent, maltiness is big enough to hold its own. Finish hoppy and semi-dry.

I think the IPL is a bit of a confused style, one that I like a lot. I've had many that have a similar likeness to a very clean APA or ones like that that are pretty much an Imperial Pilsner. Either way, a whole lot of fun to drink.

Photo of bsp77
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into standard pint glass.

Appearance: Bright amber with decent off-white head.

Smell: Sweet citrus,with orange and grapefruit. Some spiciness. Toast and biscuit that is reminiscent of a Vienna Lager.

Taste: Very citrusy with orange and grapefruit. Like the aroma, the malt backbone reminds me a Vienna Lager, with toast, biscuit and caramel. Fairly bitter finish that is citrusy and spicy and about halfway between an IPA and a Vienna Lager.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, medium body with a dry, crisp finish.

Overall: Interesting hybrid, but this isn't really a Pale Lager. I would describe this as an Imperialized version of Eliot Ness with a boatload of citrusy hops. Which really makes sense as an anniversary beer.

Photo of MattyG85
4.21/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tall Summit glass. Bottle says enjoy by 8/31/13.

Appearance: Pours a deep copper amber orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid two fingers of off white head that slowly fade into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A zesty and bready aroma with a solid balance of malt and hops. Bready malts with hints of biscuit, caramel, toffee, toasted bread, rye, cracker, and lager yeast. Strong hop presence with citrus fruit esters of orange, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, and mango. Earthy hop hints of grass and pine resin spice. Fairly floral and oily as well. A pretty good balance of bready malt, hops, and spice.

Taste: Like the aroma, a bready and spicy lager malt profile with a big presence of earthy and citrus hops. Bready malts with a taste of biscuit, sweet caramel, toffee, toast, rye spice, crackers, and lager yeast. Big mix of hops with citrus fruit notes of orange peel, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, and mangos. Very earthy with a big grassy hop presence and some herbal pine resin and floral notes. A well balanced and pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Crisp, oily, smooth, and pretty drying on the finish.

Overall: A pretty good twist on a lager. Good biscuity rye spiced malts with a big helping of hops.

Photo of Brenden
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A brew with both brightness and clarity, this one is a pure copper color. It grows a creamy off-white head to about one finger and never subsides past half a finger, particularly compact and creamy. Lacing clings to the glass in patches after an impressive ring at the top.
The smell has an extremely interesting component that I can't quite place, somewhat herbal with some earth and grains, beneath a piney and grassy bitterness.
The bitterness is stronger, pithier and more resinous in the flavor. It leans a little herbal into the finish as well with a spiciness. It may be the yeast adding that interesting component, which is also present in the taste. The malts add some breadiness alongside the bitterness. The overall flavor softens a little leading into the finish, but does offer a lingering herb and flowery combination.
The body is light, almost medium, and deep. There's a good smoothness to the consistent crisp bite as each sip rolls on the tongue off a steady carbonation. It's clean overall and goes slightly dry into the herbal finish without getting too chalky.

Photo of CloudStrife
4.04/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Best by 08/31/13.

A: Pours a clear golden amber with a thin white head. Just a bit of visible carbonation. The head leaves some good lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: Aroma of a lager yeast with an heavy hand of hops. Malts are in the background providing some sweetness. Hints of green grape, peach and apricot.

T: Great blend going on here. Brings the IPA style to lagers with an immense hop bitterness. Bready, cracker like malts bring up the rear but are overpowered by the fruity earthy hops. As with the aroma I get a mild dose of light fruits.

M: Medium body with fairly low carbonation. Clean finish with only a hint of stickiness. Pretty easy drinking for the ABV.

Overall another solid beer from Great Lakes. Really digging this style and am excited to try any breweries take. Dortmunder Gold is a solid base to start with and it makes this beer solid. Give it a try if your into hops.

Photo of BEEER
3.96/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vibrant copper color with quickly diminishing white head and nice lacing. Aroma is malty with a light hop presence, but pretty weak. Flavor is huge compared to the aroma. It's got a powerful mix of bitter, piney hops, roasty malts, and herbal earthy notes. Mouthfeel is light with high carbonation that tingles. Overall it's a very good, unique beer.

Photo of tjsdomer2
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Golden with incredible white foam and lacing. Very active carbonation and extremely frothy, especially for a lager.

Smell: I really can't pinpoint what this smells like. There is pine. There is citrus. There is a lot of dry hay. There might even be some berries. It almost smells like seawater. I was originally going to say sweat, but they would make it sound gross. This also might be the first beer that has made me sneeze.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Dry hay and floral hops. Has the flavor of noble hops with the mouthfeel and dryness of Dortmunder Gold. Clean mouthfeel. Medium-light body.

Overall: Definitely worth a try. Will please light and dark beer drinkers alike.

Photo of schmidtmattsays
3.29/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12oz brown bottle with a freshness date of 9/2/13 poured into a pilsner glass. Amber/orange with a golden halo. Thin head. Smells of American hops, burnt veggies, potpourri, and the 7.5% ABV comes through very clearly. Bitter clumsy taste. Finishes drier than expected - but not as dry as the Tank 7 by Boulevard I was drinking last night. This was my first imperial pilsner and my first from Great Lakes. I've now had the anniversary offerings from Goose Island, New Glarus, and Great Lakes. Are anniversary beers just categorically bad?

Photo of WoodBrew
3.18/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Not one of my favorites from Great Lakes. This beer poured a clear copper with frothy white head that is lacing quite nicely. The scent is faint but there is bittering hops and maybe a tinge of English malt. The taste is mostly dominated by alcohol...and it is very bitter all the way through the beer....not much malt balance. The mouthfeel is medium in body with decent carbonation....and very dry. Overall not a fan of this one....glad I split a four pack with my neighbor as it was a bit pricey.

Photo of prototypic
3.99/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Silver & Gold IPL pours a lighter copper or amber color. Looks crystal clear. It takes on a slightly orange look when held to light. There might be a slight reddish tint, as well. I like the color. It’s topped with a slightly off-white cap. It rises to about half a finger in height before falling back to a surface covering. It holds there for a while. Lacing was a little sticky, but on the lighter side.

It definitely smells good. The malt base is very biscuity and bread-like. There is a hint of sweetness, but it’s very subtle. Hops smell piney and citric. Grapefruit and orange are the most notable scents. They blend really well with the base. I wasn’t sure how the hops and lager elements would gel, but they sure smell good. Better than expected. Alcohol is noted, but isn’t all that strong. Smells good. I’m impressed.

At this point, it’s not a huge surprise. It tastes good, too! It definitely tastes like a lager out of the gate. The malt base is very biscuity. It does have just a touch of sweetness behind it, but it’s not much at all. The real magic here is the interplay between the hops and its lager qualities. They work well together! The hops have a nice citrus grapefruit and orange flavor together with just a little pine, as well. It is a bit bitter. I like it. Alcohol is there, but isn’t overwhelming by any means. Finishes biscuity, hoppy, a little bitter, and dry. Good stuff!

The body is medium. Carbonation is very light and restrained. The bubbles are nice and soft. It goes down soft and easy. I could handle two or three in a sitting easily.

Silver & Gold IPL is surprisingly good. It’s a really nice hoppy lager. It’s honestly much better than I anticipated. Great Lakes may surprise some with this 25th Anniversary release, but it doesn’t surprise me at all. Given that their flagship, Dortmunder Gold, is a lager…this is perfect. I believe Imperial Dortmunder was their 20th Anniversary release. Silver & Gold IPL is fitting for the 25th. Good stuff. Happy 25th!!!

Photo of Hopdaemon39
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint- pours a clear golden orange color with one finger of head, nice retention and beautiful, even lacing.

Smell is pleasant and intriguing- definitely get a big Dortmunder yeast smell, along with some bready malts and a little citrus hop aroma (I think GLBC likes cascade a lot).

Well balanced taste- bready malt up front, then there's a lot of hops. Yeast is present towards the end to duke it out with the hops but the hops win. A little muddled though.

Mouthfeel is very nice- medium body and moderately carbonated. A little resinous for my taste. This is certainly worth trying but they should do some more experimenting with this style.

Photo of smakawhat
4.01/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a tall pilsner style glass.

A real looker. Deep mellow bronze copper gold and crystal clear body, with super slow rising carbonation, it's as the beer is in suspended animation. Head is creamy tan, and thick with island like clumping in the small glass. A real beautiful looking beer.

Nose is quite nice but if slightly muted. Slight toasty caramel, a dry sense of malts and light brown sugar. Hop angle is quite solid but not overkilled with a minor grassy touch. Thick. Interesting to see where this leads.

A mellow since of caramel, and a good hint of grass like hop. Hop angle fades on the swallow as dense malts take over. Sticky. Good amount of pine like resin leftover on this. Semi arid finish but with a good density. Large hop aroma left in the mid palate after swallow.

Overall a fun brew from the Great Lakes brewery, let's hope there's still 25 more years left in the tank.

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle purchased and drank at Acme Bar and Pizza in Rochester, NY.

Pours a bright golden yellow, with a billowy 2 inch head and lots of good lacing down the glass.

Smells quite grassy and floral, with some light juicy citrus.

The taste is similar. Midly bitter, with some mild lager yeast flavors, there's a bunch of orange and pineapple hop flavors, plus some grassy bitterness and leafy hop flavors.

Light to medium bodied, crisp mouthfeel, low carbonation. Very drinkable.

This is a new style du jour, and I love it. This is a worthy entrant into the arena.

Photo of Emnmarko
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 8/31/13 enjoyed 3/30/14

A- Rich copper in color and clear. A one finger head reduces quickly to leave a light halo.

S- Sweet malts, tropical fruity hops. Smells great!

T- Strong sweet bready malts come on first with a hoppy kick in the middle. A dry peppery hop aftertaste lingers on.

M- Lighter than medium bodied. Nothing crazy or unexpected. Goes down smooth.

O- A great tasting IPL. Easy to drink with a huge helping of hop bitterness.

Photo of buschbeer
3.84/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle
Served in a pilsner glass

A - It is a lovely amber color with golden highlights. It is clear and topped with an inch of off-white head.

S - It has a cooked vegetable smell with some metal mixed in there for good measure.

T - It is very light on the malt. The metal from the smell carries over into the aftertaste. I also get some floral hop flavor. There is a little citrus in there as well.

M - Moderate

O - The IPL is a fairly new style to me. I had my first one about ten months ago and have only had a handful of varieties. I find it an interesting alternative to an IPA. It has a lot of flavor and goes down quite easily. I am kind of a Great Lakes homer, so of course I like this beer.

Photo of mfnmbvp
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, with best by date of 09/02/2013. Excited to try this newest offering from Great Lakes Brewing Co., a brewery that has quickly become one of my favorites.

Poured into a Firestone Walker pint glass.

A - Pours a light bright coppery orange colored body. Almost an IPA-like appearance. Some fine sediment floating around the glass. About two fingers of doughy off-white head on top. Thick, scattered lacing.

S - Smell is a little different than anticipated: faint earthy hops, some bready malt presence, a bit fruity & floral and a bit of a spicy peppery smell are the most prominent scents here. Bit of soapiness and smells a bit like stale perfume, as strange as that sounds.

T - Taste is of spicy bitter peppery hops, some earth, fresh squeezed peach / mango, clean toasted bready malts, and maybe a hint of rye on the finish. A bit more full-bodied than expected, and exceptionally well-balanced flavors. A bit of alcohol warmth on the finish, with some coppery / metallic aftertaste.

M - Feel is of bitter hop resins, and some alcohol heat. The bottle describes it well: with a dry finish, yet leaves you feeling refreshed. An exceptionally smooth and drinkable beer.

Overall, a highly palatable and interesting beer. Very unique and well-balanced flavors going on here; this is not at all what I was expecting. Bitter and sweet, dry and juicy, fruity and malty, with a modest 7.50% abv, this is definitely another job well-done from Great Lakes.

Great Lakes Silver & Gold IPL ---4/5.

Photo of rlee1390
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A-Clear orange, not much carbonation and one finger head with some lacing.

S-Bread, straw, very lager-like. Not much of the hops here.

T-Very earthy, balance is slightly off, some hops and bitterness. Caramel and other malt. Some pine.

M-Medium bodied, some carbonation, tad bit of hop resins.

O-The balance of the hops and the Imperial Pils did not go together.

Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.02/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Green's tulip. The pour is really beautiful. It's light copper in color, crystal-clear, and sports a well-formed white head with good retention. The nose is a mix of malty bready notes and spicy hops. There is also a cidery sweetness to the nose.

The beer is light-medium bodied and has a balanced flavor. Clean malt hits the front of the palate first with a pleasant grainy sweetness. The hops rush in very quickly and push the bitterness just beyond balance. The bitterness is herbal and botanic, not dry and stony. Very satisfying with a few rough edges and a starchy, husky lingering bitterness on the finish.

Silver and Gold Imperial Style Pale Lager is a 25th anniversary beer from Great Lakes. Pilsners are not my favorite style, but I do enjoy (traditional) lagers with their clean malt flavors and nice peppery finish. This one is like Dortmunder Gold with a generous dry-hopping. Experimental? Possibly. Successful? I think so. I could definitely see myself enjoying the earthy bitterness of this one just before a meal.

Photo of ChrisB
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Smooth, bright, citrusy grapefruit. Nice full-bodied mouthfeel and crisp aftertaste without being syrupy. Very drinkable. One of the better beers I've had this year. A 6 of these could go down very enjoyably which is not something that you can say about all 7.5% beers.

Photo of carlborch
3.49/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep golden, brilliant pour with 1.5 inch creamy, off-white head. The initial nose suggests citrus, malt, and biscuits. Rich palate with medium-full body and extended hop and malt notes. Floral hops and a slight hint of soapiness. Modest carbonation. The head has settled to 1/8 inch, leaving beautiful Belgian lace. Well balanced malt and hops on the palate - some spiciness. The ABV is not noticeable. Fresh.

Photo of fmccormi
4.34/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Straight pour from a 12oz pry-off bottle to my DFH IPA glass; freshness date of August 31, 2013 printed in white ink near the bottom-right corner of the label (“For freshest taste, please enjoy by: 8/31/13 11722GE”). Based on a 90-day freshness period (give or take), that would make this bottle about five weeks old. Hey, it only popped up in our market this past week, so blame the distributors, I guess. Still pretty damn fresh.

Appearance (4.0): A solid two fingers of pale tan-colored head rise off the pour, capping a rich, honey-amber colored body with warm, orange tones. The head is thick and fluffy, dying down very slowly while a steady stream of bubbles come from around the glass to refresh it. As the head does down and the body recedes, it leaves spots of lace here and there and a couple of collars early on. Overall, it looks pretty damn good for the style.

Smell (4.25): A very nice balance of hops and malt comes along easily, with a bevy of juicy, rich citrus fruit aromas (the classic notes of ripe pineapple, red grapefruit flesh and zest), with a more subtle, resinous pine note. The malt is nicely toasted and moderately rich, with nutty and almost buttery aromas (freshly-toasted and -buttered white toast), but the hops are so juicy and bright that they steal the show.

Taste (4.5): This more or less follows the nose, and it delivers all of that character in spades: the hops move from juicy citrus to pungent resin and grapefruit zest, delivering an earthy tobacco note with a solid punch of slightly weedy, strongly grapefruit-peel-y bitterness and flavor. Really, really nice. Meanwhile, the malt is moderately rich with a buttery, toasted breadiness up top with undercurrents of pecan-like nuttiness, rich, toasted bread like challah, and fresh-baked biscuits. The finish comes along with that flash of grapefruit zest and resin, and hangs on for a moderate length of time.

Mouthfeel (4.25): Great Lakes always does a good job on the mouthfeel, regardless of style: a soft, full carbonation that foams modestly and barely tingles here and there, complementing a medium-weight body with drying hop oils to lighten the finish. Quite drinkable, but it still retains the heft and richness expected for the size of the beer.

Overall (4.25): Strikes me as a fuller version of Dortmunder Gold with a very solid IPA-styled hop load. It’s got the characteristic notes of what a good lager should be in my mind, with nutty, toasted malts and a clean, snappy finish. Add to that a well-styled, well-structured, and appropriately bitter hop character, and the various parts of this beer add up to an exceptional example of the style. Personally, I really, really dig this beer.

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Great Lakes Silver & Gold IPL from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 363 ratings.