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Whole Hog Imperial Pilsner - Stevens Point Brewery

Not Rated.
Whole Hog Imperial PilsnerWhole Hog Imperial Pilsner

Educational use only; do not reuse.

42 Reviews
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Reviews: 42
Hads: 55
Avg: 3.58
pDev: 15.92%
Wants: 0
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stevens Point Brewery visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: madtowndmb1 on 05-04-2009

No notes at this time.
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Reviews: 42 | Hads: 55
Photo of brentk56
2.6/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a nice head; the retention and lacing were good but the color is all wrong for a pils

Smell: Very malty, with sweet caramel; little hop presence

Taste: Sweet caramel malt, up front, with the sweetness growing, like a malt liquor, through the finish; a lot of fusel alcohol in this one

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation; warmth in the gullet

Overall: Not sure what the brewery was targeting with this but it appears that this may be discontinued from the series - certainly understandable

Thanks, chocosushi, for the opportunity

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Photo of zeff80
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, golden-orange color with a two-finger, white head of bubbly foam. It was short-lived and left little to no lacing.

S - It smelled floral and of some sweet caramel.

T - It was fairly boozy tasting with sweet caramel maltiness. There was a subtle spicy hop profile.

M - It was crisp and fairly sharp. A medium bodied lager.

D - This is an okay imperial pilsener. A little boozy and lacking balance.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.48/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

Nice random find at a local shop. Never saw it there before, but figured it'd be worth a shot. It pours a clear orange-amber topped by a short-lived finger of dirty white foam. The nose comprises mandarin orange, caramel, and a touch of flowers. The taste holds notes of mandarin orange syrup, orange peel, caramel, hard water, and a stiff backbone of flowery booze. Man, does this kind of hurt going down... The body is a stolid medium (almost hefty-leaning), with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta syrupy feel. Overall, this beer did not sit right with me. There was very little pils character: It came off more like some kind of amped-up imperial amber or something, just poorly done. Boo this.

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Photo of russpowell
3.35/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up in Wichita

Pour an effervescent apricot with 2+ fingers of cream colored head. Good head retention & average lacing

S: Grassy hops & orchard fruit

T: Pears, breadyness, grassy hops & honey malt up front. Some grapefruit comes through as this warms along with a touch of green banana???, weird; plus boozey warmth as this warms, starting to remind me of a weizenbock...Finishes boozey, fruitty with more green banana, & pineapple. Straying a bit off style, .5 deduction

MF: Chewy, fairly soft carbonation, fair balance

Drinks easy enough for the style & ABV, but not one I'll be seeking out

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Photo of rhoadsrage
2.9/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

(Served in a strange)
A- The crystal clear orange body has a sea of microbubbles launching to the surface that is a thin soapy white head that soon fades.
S- This beer has a soft clean green noble hop hint.
T- This beer has a soft sweet malt flavor with a dry green finish and a faint pungent hint.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel and a tight fizz with no alcohol heat.
D- This beer has a very soft hop profile and no pilsner qualities. It is easy to drink but a bit lack luster.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.62/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a 5 (or so) oz taster glass at the Saukville Beer and Wine Tasting.

A - The bottle pours out a lightly hazy golden yellow with a dense off-white head. Bits of lace left on the glass with moderate retention.

S - The aroma starts with a light pale malt backbone with a fair blend of noble and other hops that impart pine and citrus with a low level alcohol kiss.

T - Big pale and pilsner malt backbone with a crispness and overlapping hop flavor that's noble it seems. A thin dry and bitter finish.

M - Highly carbonated and smooth with a dry and bitter finish to this medium-bodied pilsner.

D - This pilsner falls darn close to a sessionable brew. The medium body and "imperial" boost in flavor knock the drinkability down slightly, but not by a whole lot.

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Photo of cokes
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Basically clear honey gold with a tight off-white head, though it gathers little rise, it throws some nice lacework around and down the glass.
Herbal and dried floral aromas, spiked hard with a pushy bubblegum sweetness and notions of candied orange. Some honey and golden raisin-like maltiness appears, especially as it warms.
Crackery up front, and dry, with a prevasive mien of barely damp hay that lingers for its entirety. Honey and peaches pop up and add sweetness. Bubblegum, again, flares up, and serves as a nuisance. The finish is full of pressed flowers and herb, iron, copper, and mint oil. Alcohol is hardly noted, but comes through a bit on the inhale.
The body is a fattened medium, rounded off a bit with a lively carbonation. It does get a bit sticky here and there, but for a brew this size, that's understandable.
This is drinkable far beyond it's listed strength, and has many things going for it. But- and maybe I'm over sensitive- the bubblegum esters on the nose and in the taste knock this one down a good deal. Subtract them, and you've got a nice, fat pils here....or at least a hoppy maibock.

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Photo of morimech
3.14/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden color with two inches of white head that had great retention. The head eventually settles to a thick cap. Heavy lacing is left on the glass. Unfortunately the appearance is the best part of this beer. Very tame aroma. Immediately after the pour I thought I smelled cooked corn but it was just briefly. Then it is just faint hop herbal/floral aromas and some cereal grains. The flavor is not that big considering it is an imperial, until you get to the finish. Then it is bitter and boozy. Not my favorite combination. Extremely dry. The body is rather modest as well considerly the ABV and bitterness. But it does have nice carbonation. I think the brewer missed the mark. Need more from the hops besides bitterness and a bigger malt bill. Nothing unpalatable about this beer, it could be so much better.

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Photo of alexgash
3.47/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle.

Very clear, clean, medium brass body. Small, short-lived, cottony white head. Fruity malt on the nose, with spearmint, pine, floral, and resinous hop notes. A little alcohol burn as well. Honey and toasted malt up front. Becomes fruitier and sweet, with notes of hay and cooked vegetables. Solid hop bitterness comes in midway through. Herbal, floral, and mildly citrus. Honey sweet finish with lingering herbal hops. Medium body with a slightly slick, oily feel. Not bad, but not the best imperial pilsner I've had.

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Photo of Vancer
3.43/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This big bad boy starts off with a semi-hazy amber in the Corsendonk tulip, eggshell marshmallow 2'inches thick, even with such a big brew. Nice lace on the way down, but then...

Aroma is a strange pilsner bird, sweet citrus malt is the key ingredient. Quaff does not match it; unfortunately, a sour and raspy wood dominates the malt backbone. I know it's a strong brew, and the alcohol does not burn through, but the taste is just not right

Four pack for $8 ain't a bad deal, too bad the brews just don't make a better showing.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.9/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a pale straw yellow color with a 1 finger head, leaves plenty of sticky lacing, clear

S: nose consists of lemon, grassy hops, toasted bread, caramel, and flowers

T: the flavor begins with a pretty big malt presence in the form of bready grains and follows up with grassy and lemony hops, very well balanced and well hidden alcohol

MF: suprisingly smooth and creamy, medium body, nice

D: this one sure beats the Whole Hog 6-ipa...overall a well constructed brew and a good representation of a pils

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Photo of garymuchow
3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired as a special from Big Top liquors.
Presents as in impressively big American-style lager. Strong malt character of American lager style and actually fairly subdued hops.
Appears heavy in the glass and is mostly clear with some rising bubbles. Dense white head settles with a few big bubbles in a small thin layer of white small bubbles. Also leaves considerable lacing as the drink proceeds downward.
Taste is heavy on malt flavor although there is a prominent bitterness which is fairly short-lived as a green hop flavor and contributes a small dry finish. Hops are more noted in taste and then in aroma and blend nicely with the malt characteristics.
A heavy body for a lager with carbonation that blends nicely.
This beer drinks nicely. As noted previously it's a big old American-style lager that is hopped up with some significance.

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Photo of Monkeyknife
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a clear gold with three fingers of rich off-white head.

Aroma of big floral hops, lemon, cereal grains, and bready malts.

The taste is classic pilsner. Rich floral hops, sweet lemon, and malty cracker and bread notes. Finishes clean, and the 8.5% alcohol sheds a touch of heat but is pretty well hidden.

Medium bodied, crisp and clean, with a sharp carbonation.

I really enjoyed this Imperial Pilsner from Stevens Point. So drinkable, and what I look for in a quality pilsner.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.99/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a dusky, golden-peach hue with a bit more yeast haziness than is appropriate for the style. Plus, the minuscule egg-carton white head recedes quickly to a thin wisp and ring of foam...not much lacing or retention. The aroma is an improvement, with a bit of grassy hay and pilsner malt providing a backbone for a bit of piny hoppiness that smells of pineapple and tangerine citrus fruits.

The flavor mimics the aroma nicely, although a hint of soapiness creeps in among the dusty pilsner malt and bitter, grassy German hop notes. Hops linger in the finish alongside a bit of spicy, medicinal booze. Mouthfeel is crisp and bubbly, and has a nice weight for the ABV without becoming overly taxing or syrupy on the palate. In sum: a solidly built Imperial Pilsner, and one I'd quickly reach for again.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.62/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Pours a slightly coudy copper color with a small white head that vanishes quickly and very little lacing.

Smell- Lots of alchohol, floral and citrus hops, fig. Very strong overall, almost fels like it could clear your sinuses.

Taste- Isn't as overpowering as the smell. Citrusy hops jump out immediately. The bitterness stands out but it is complemented by a caramel sweet malt. Imperial pilsners like this are interesting because the bitterness of the hops and sweetness of the malts strangely work well together.

Mouthfeel- Thick. Almost a syrupy aspect. carbonation is well balanced.

Overall a good tasting Imperial. Smell and mouth fell might be a little overpowering at times but taste is well balanced.

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Photo of sholland119
3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a clear copper gold with a very thin white head that leaves a small ring of lacing.

S-Sweet caramel and biscuit malt with a light hop background.

T-Sweet in the front with a nice floral hop bite in the finish.

M-Medium bodied with crisp carbonation.

D-Very tasty and delicious. I would gladly have another.


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Photo of Mdog
3.43/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Gold, lots of particles, good head.

Smell: Bready, tea-like aroma.

Taste: Similar to the smell, bready, with an interesting bitterness that I can't quite describe. Not really what I'd expect from a big pilsner.

Drinkability: More of a sipper or nightcap style beer.

There aren't a lot of imperial pilsners around, and every one I've had has been different from the rest. This one was interesting, but maybe a little old as I don't get the flavors other reviewers note. Let the experimentation continue!

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Photo of stephens101
3.03/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours reddish-orange with a flurry of bubble activity that results in a diminutive off-white head which fades quickly leaving little to no lace behind. Smells malty and grassy with a little fruitiness in the very back. The palate is nearly overwhelmed by a huge spicy alcohol heat, but a few notes of malt and citrus emerge just before a nice little hop bite shows itself. After a while some sour notes emerge as well. Goes down crisp with more alcohol brutality on the throat, and felt immediately in the stomach. Don't get me wrong. I like to taste the alcohol a bit in my big beers, but this one really doesn't have much going on in the balance department. That being said, as it warms up, and I get used to it, it doesn't seem as harsh. The Imperial Pilsner, as a style, doesn't seem to be doing it for me, and this one doesn't help the cause.

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Photo of paco1029384756
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden orange color with one finger of foamy white head.

Scent of fading hops, light caramel, earth, sugar, some fruit and sharp alcohol. Not bad, but not great.

Taste of strong grain, caramel, light fruit, and some alcohol. A bit boozy, the other flavors fail to hide that, it isn't an unpleasant taste though.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good bite of carbonation, very enjoyable.

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Photo of botham
4.2/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass. Pours a light amber color with golden highlights and one and a half fingers of tight white head. Good retention and light lacings on the glass.

Aroma is of floral hops up front (mildly rich), with a pale malt base and notes of cereal grain and a bit of bready yeast. Nicely composed in the nose with a fresh quality.

Taste follows the nose with an alcoholic tinge and a bit more of a malt presence, albeit small. Finishes on a dry floral hop note. Taste profile is true to an imperial pilsner; all that a great Pilsner should be only dialed up in intensity.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a mild bite from alcohol and a dry finish. An alcoholic tinge comes through as the brew warms a bit, but does not take away from the rest of the profile.

As already said, this brew is exactly what an Imperial Pilsner should be. Floral and lightly malty, with a satisfying quality and crisp finish. All this is present, only the brew is very flavorful and carries an 8.5% APV tag. Very well crafted and pleasant to drink. It is a wonder that more of this style has not been seen. Cheers!

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Photo of samie85
3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a hazy orange color with two and a half fingers of white, thick, dense head.

S-Smells of fruity white wine notes with some light malt and herbal hop notes.

T-Tastes like a sweet, fruity, slightly corny with some piney and herbal hop notes reminiscent of an old IPA.

M-On the light side of medium bodied with relatively low carbonation and a slightly drying wine-like finish.

D-Pretty easy drinking... I was expecting more of a German hop punch in the face with some corn and graininess in the background. An interesting beer and a style that I'd like to try again.

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Photo of dstc
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep gold color with a big white head. Head falls slow to a small one. Fairly decent lace.

Not bad aroma with sweet grainy malts and mild hops if you get your nose in it.

Decent taste. Rather full malts that are pleasant. Ends with the hops and a lingering bitter mild aftertaste.

Thin to medium bodied and rather smooth.

Nice beer. By far not the best imperial pilsner I've had (thinking of Golden Revolution) but nice for an old brewery like Point. I can see having several of these although deep down you can tell it's another WI lager.

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Photo of madtowndmb1
4.27/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I tried this beer as a sample with a friend the other day.

A: Poured a hazy straw color with a 1/2" foamy white head.

S: Smelled of grassy hops and had a very clean smell about it, but not in a bad way!

T: Very enjoyable! It had a nice malt backbone and just enough hops to add a touch of bite to it. The hops had a grassy taste but not like chewing on your lawn clippings, more of that enjoyable smell of the hay at a pumpkin patch or something.

M: Very clean finishing beer and had a good little lingering after-taste.

D: It would've been a 5 but it is 8.5% beer and I take a little away from that since it is so high. I'd recommend trying this beer even if your not a fan of the style!

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Photo of ZimZamZoom
2.97/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. twisty poured into a pint glass. Imperial or not, I like my pilsners nice and clear. This one fails, coming in a pretty hazy looking light orange-amber color. Thin white head fades to a ring that hangs around for a bit.

A bit of a piney hop spice in the aroma, and there is the promise of a big malty presence in the background. Overall there is balance but aroma is very subtle. Taste is big on alcohol, which overpowers the hops though there is some noticeable fruity spice present. Alcohol owns the middle of this as well, though some malt roundness sweetens things up a bit. Briefly reminds me of a tripel with an interesting bubble-gum flavor...then hops bite bitter in the end as the mouth dries out with alcohol.

Big bodied but really just too much alcohol to make for a nice mouthfeel. Some beers hide the alcohol well...this is not one of them. Not a very drinkable impy pils.

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Photo of Chaz
3.92/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber-golden ("dark straw") in color, topped with a puffy one-fingered off white head which recedes very gradually, leaving behind a good bit of lace. Coarsely-filtered, but otherwise quite clear.

Pungent, rich blend of malts and plenty of Noble hop presence. Musty/yeasty, and rather Bock-like; this one very much reminds me of certain strong European lagers (Hevelius Caper from Poland, to name just one).

Insistent malts and a light booziness on the first sip, this initial impression fades to a blend of grainy malt character and lingering bitterness after a minute or so.

Not-quite soft on the palate, there's a depth and complexity to this one which is due in no small part to the malts used in the grain bill; hop use is obviously consistent as per the 'Imperial' aspect if the style, and yet there's less and less of them (aside from the bitterness alone) throughout the drink.

I'm not big on the idea of an unfiltered imperial pilsner, but I've enjoyed a handful of zwickels and Landbiers with plenty of character due to the fact that thy were unfiltered, and as such this beer hews close to these stylistic characteristics while also being based on an American stylistic invention: mouthfeel is better than average, to say the least, and the drinkability is very nearly exceptional.

---End Note---
I first tried Whole Hog Imperial Pilsner at the brewery, and shortly after its initial release. It was a real eye-opener at the time! The bottled version (and this sample in particular) has held up quite nicely considering the time it has spent in the bottle. This is especially poignant considering the fact (or my opinion, rather) that the Six Hop IPA did not hold up as well. Of course, we all know that the hop profile of Imperial or Double IPAs diminishes with the consequence being that the overall flavor profile diminishes, too, but these were interesting beers from a heritage brewery, and make me wonder whether you can't teach an old dog new tricks!

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Whole Hog Imperial Pilsner from Stevens Point Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.