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Full Tilt IPA - Harbor City Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Full Tilt IPAFull Tilt IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

33 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 33
Reviews: 32
rAvg: 2.93
pDev: 21.5%
Wants: 0
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harbor City Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  ABV ?

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: cokes on 11-19-2002)
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Ratings: 33 | Reviews: 32 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by ceeman:
Photo of ceeman


1.8/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Easily the worst IPA I've ever had. Tasted like a light macro brew lager. Avoid this at all costs. It's almost like the brewer had no idea what an IPA actually is. With so many good IPA's coming out of Wisconsin breweries, this is the most disapointing one I've come across.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2008 04:44:24 | More by ceeman
More User Reviews:
Photo of bpfrush


3.5/5  rDev +19.5%

11-14-2011 21:18:40 | More by bpfrush
Photo of wheatyweiss


1.8/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Poured from a bottle into a perfect.

Pours a light straw/apricot with a moderate cloud. One finger head recedes to a cap and leaves little to no lacing.

Aroma is of husky grain. Malt up front is adjunct and discerning. I smell what leads me to wheat, maybe corn? But I don't know for sure. Strange to say the least for an IPA.

Flavor is husky grain with a healthy dose of diacetyl. Hops in the middle are bitter are taste stale and not much more. There is absolutely no depth to the hop flavor. One dimensional and unremarkable, they are bitter like soap. Finishes husly and corny, like the mash was fortified with corn or the wort was boiled WAY too long. Not very well done at all.

Mouthfeel is crisp and carbonation is adequate.

Not a good flavor and the aroma isn't far behind. The hop and malt profile is abysmal. I would not buy this again. Not recommended. This is why BMC drinkers never venture out, tastes horrid.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2009 02:19:54 | More by wheatyweiss
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.08/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada Imperial Pint. No date or info.

A - It pours hazy golden yellow and, despite the moderate pour, the head quickly rises to a huge four fingers! It slowly drops to one of those crazy head-plateaus where the sides give way leaving a massive center. Great sticky lacing. Fantastic!

S - The pour releases a big aroma with little pleasure. A bit grainy and thin it smells kind of shallow for an IPA. A fine level of hops is there but uninspired. A bit of lemon citrus and some herbal aspects. It's not much to behold.

T - A lack of balancing malts in the flavor makes this beer like hop-water. I like it though! It's crisp and clean with a zesty citrus lemon and grapefruit flavor with a bland herbal and pine finish. It's just a bit too unbalanced.

M - Smooth and sharp at the end, it's a lighter-bodied IPA that has a crisp finish with a dry bitter feel too it.

D - Not bad but interesting. The malts play no role in this at all besides fermentable sugars. Their flavor is completely lost at sea. The appearance is stunning. I wish the rest of the beer followed suit.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2009 19:40:28 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of Onenote81

North Carolina

3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Received as an extra from BeerFMAndy in a recent trade. Huge thanks for the trade!

Poured into my conical pint glass. Pours a very cloudy copper gold with a big 2-finger off-white head resting on top. This sticks around a good bit, and leaves plenty of sticky lace. Smells of peppery spices mixed with a sharp twang. Not a big citrus or piney scent, very subtle.

The feel of this one is crisp and clean, but it sips well. Slight creamy quality to it makes it a pleasure to drink. The spices I got in the nose come out in the flavor as well. Definitely some big time bitterness going on here, but it's of the spicy variety. Dull black pepper start to this, that finishes more mellow and grainy. The semi-sweet citrus that I enjoy in IPAs is absent in this beer, but it's still decent. It's a different take on the style, and I commend them for it. I wouldn't want many of these at a time as the spicy nature would wear on me, but I'd have it again.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2009 15:55:06 | More by Onenote81
Photo of Rennpferd


4.33/5  rDev +47.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It poured a clear copper color with light activity and a nice frothy two finger head. The head receded slowly and left a very nice lacing on the sides of the glass.

Very fragrant yet mellow hoppy scent. Nice fresh aroma.

Nice malt beginnings that balance out to a refreshing hop finish. Smooth and clean. Slightly watery but good.

Very drinkable beer. It is a good representation of the style.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2008 01:12:33 | More by Rennpferd
Photo of WJVII


2.23/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass this brew is a light orange with a good amount of transparity. There is a slight white head but it fades fast leaving nearly no lacing. The smell is very faint, not much hops, or floral nose like an IPA should have. The taste is the same, not much flavor, some slight citrus and mild hops with nearly no carbonation. This is a poor example of an IPA and the style is not represented at all.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2008 02:42:02 | More by WJVII
Photo of keoki182


3.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Harbor City's version of an IPA is considerably less hoppy than most IPAs that come to mind. The nose is quite hoppy with citric/coniferous notes, but the ale itself is more flavorful than bitter. This is a pretty good beer, just not an IPA. Perhaps more of an American pale?

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2008 23:42:36 | More by keoki182
Photo of Homerbag


2.1/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Clear dark orange with finger thick white head that quickly disappears.

No aroma of hops what so ever. Mineral water and some sweet malt are prevalent, but no hops. Tastes of a high quality Macro lager. Some malt, mineral water, no hops. Feel is thin and clean.

This is a weak lawn mower beer at best. I hate to slam beers because no matter what it is someones hard work. But I hate being lied to. This is labeled as an IPA, which gives me something to look forward to because I am a hop head. But like I said before, there are no hops in this beer that are at all discernable. I won't drain pour, but I won't buy it again.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2008 21:28:05 | More by Homerbag
Photo of CaptainIPA


2.28/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured burnt orange with a thin, wispy head and no visible carbonation.

Skunky maple aroma with metallic notes. Absolutely no hint of hops.

Slightly sweet barley flavor followed by a light bitterness and crisp, dry finish. Balanced in the sense of equally non-existent hops and malt.

Very thin, under carbonated mouthfeel. Seemed too light for even a respectable pale ale designation.

Given that, I suppose the Full Tilt name is simply a reference to the angle of the sailboat on the label.

Unlike the ocean voyages of yesteryear, they used just enough hops to get this IPA across the harbor.

Stick a lemon wedge in and call it iced tea.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2008 20:44:44 | More by CaptainIPA
Photo of emerge077


2.68/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled at Captain Mike's in Kenosha, WI, review from notes.

Dull orange tone, some visible carbonation, but strangely no head whatsoever. Very nondescript aroma, not like sniffing a beer at all. You would think that an IPA might have some inkling of hops in it, but there was none to be found.

Dominant flavor of sweet barley or malt, but no hops at all. Very low level bitterness, but no hop flavor. Boo. It has low carbonation, and has more of a tea-like character. Ok drinkablility, but it was so dull I would never seek this out or drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2008 18:30:13 | More by emerge077
Photo of cdkrenz


1.85/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance - A thin eggshell colored head that swirls slowly away leaving a view of sporadically rising bubbles. The body is a hazy burnt orange color.

Smell - The scent is simple consisting mainly of malt but there is a hint of hops as well.

Taste - Mainly malt flavor with very little hops to speak of.

Mouthfeel - The texture is that I would associate with an IPA. It has a sublte coarseness across the tongue which would normally aid in brining out some of the different flavors.

~ I can't say I'd recommend this beer to any of my friends looking to enjoy a good IPA. The flavor is nothing like any of the IPAs I've had in the past. On second thought, maybe I should recommend this beer simply to give my beer-consuming friends a different type of IPA to sample. Probably not though.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2008 22:51:56 | More by cdkrenz
Photo of terrabyte


3.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a clear, chestnut brown with a huge white head.

The aroma smelled like grapefruit hops, with just a hint of nuttiness.

Flavor had a typical grapefruit twang. However, it was not accompanied by the usual tongue-lashing tart hops. This tasted like grapefruit juiced beer. Not really unpleasant, just seemed to be missing something for an IPA. Especially one at "Full Tilt".

Mouthfeel was just a bit over-carbonated, but it went down smooth nevertheless and was quite crisp.

Drinkability was high and could be regarded as a very refreshing beer. Probably a disappointment for those who enjoy highly hopped beers. This had the flavor, but could be considered the Unleaded version of IPA's.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2007 05:28:21 | More by terrabyte
Photo of woodychandler


2.58/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This poured creating a rocky, off-white head with low retention. It had a good, hoppy nose underlain by a mild sweetness. The color was a medium amber with a slight amount of cloudiness. The mouthfeel was medium with only a light hop presence in the mouth. The finish was highly effervescent (think a swig of club soda) with more malt than hops. This was supposed to be an American IPA? Oof. Highly disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2007 00:41:45 | More by woodychandler
Photo of BeerBelcher


2.65/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I'm not sure where I picked up this bottle. I'm also a little hazy on the difference between Sand Creek Brewing and Harbor City.

This beer pours a light hazy tan with a white head.

Aroma is a lot of sweet maltiness, only partially balanced by hops. Seems much too malty for an American IPA.

Flavor is sweet hops initially, with a very malty finish. Not bad, but not great.

Mouthfeel is full and appropriate for the style.

This beer is marginally drinkable...I don't really want another one.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2006 00:13:05 | More by BeerBelcher
Photo of badbeer


3.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pale golden color, small white head, some lacing. Strong malt base, some flowery hops, slightly grassy, a bit of lemon. Kinda different. Plenty of caramel and some biscuit in the flavor, slightly hoppy finish, and I mean slightly. Not a whole lot of flavor, but it did taste alright. Higher carbonation, heavier side of medium bodied. This was an alright beer, not very IPA-ish to me, but still a beer worth drinking.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2006 02:51:24 | More by badbeer
Photo of shivtim


3.25/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A golden honey color, a little bit hazy, with a wonderfully huge off-white head. The foamy head fades slowly. Smell is sweet citrus hops with grain. Taste is mostly grainy, with a nice gently hopped aftertaste but a little bit of metallic taste that distracts. Mouthfeel is just average, as is drinkability. The appearance and smell are the best points of this beer, which may work against it because expectations are set high and the taste just doesn't follow all the way through. Still a good beer though, not bad at all.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2006 04:41:29 | More by shivtim
Photo of tavernjef


3.28/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A clouded darker lemon yellow. Finger high capping of dusty white foam lays across the top with good might and stays present for length. Big inky blobbed lacing in patchy patterns.

Aroma is more like a hefe with a snappy yeast tone adding the unusual play of dulled lemon and wheat malt; for an IPA. Even though the aroma doesn't really speak IPA, its a fairly big and rounded.

Well this went nowhere real quick. The flavors don't say anything too impressive while at the IPA podium. Ummm...its plain,...clean, nothing IPA about it really, kinda lemony, crispened, flat finish with a small dryness of yeast and wheat-like malt. Quite skimpy for an IPA. No real off-flavors, just not alot of flavor, and nothing that says to me, IPA. More like a weakended pale ale, if that.

Feel is light/medium with a slight omff of carbonation and texture to get it going. Tenderly mild and semi sweet with lemony tones and faint drying finish.

Are they sure they bottle the right recipe here? Seem so much more like a weak Hefe mixed with a weaker pale ale. Strange for an IPA to labeled as so when it clearly is confused. As am I. Still drinkable and enjoyable, but as an IPA, I think not. As a beer to enjoy, sure, to a point of simple pleasure and more so, simple quaffing.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2006 23:32:48 | More by tavernjef
Photo of Erdinger2003


2.13/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

The head is foamy, white, falls quickly, and the color is golden and clear.

The smell is hoppy and has apples and other fruitiness.

This IPA is watery and not very hoppy, not very fruity.

Mouthfeel is a little smooth, but not very enjoyable.

Overall not very good.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2006 18:59:26 | More by Erdinger2003
Photo of maundythirsty


3.83/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

White and short-lived head over pure, clear copper-colored beer. Thin lacing keeps up for a long time. The smell just hints at citrusy hops. There's far more warm malt and some alcohol in there. The taste is a pleasant toned-down version of some of my favorite IPAs -- citrusy and sour-bitter with a commensurate malt taste. Not watery, but still thinnish. Carbonated well.

It's a hair weak for my taste, but I could see many of the folks who are freaked out by my high-IBU favorites warming quickly to this. In that way it would also satisfy me when I'm not in the mood to push the hop envelope. I like it, and I'll keep it handy.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2006 03:48:36 | More by maundythirsty
Photo of BuckeyeNation


3.4/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Flecked dark butterscotch with orange juice accents. The cap is orangish ecru in color with a gently rounded rockiness. Small splotches and arcing strands of lace set up camp on the glass, but they appear to lack commitment.

IPAs should, above all else, smell hoppy. While I can appreciate hops in this beer, they're way too weak. Even if the name was Half Tilt APA, it wouldn't be hoppy enough. Maybe it should be called Quarter Tilt. Or, in pinball parlance, how about just 'Tilt!'. To be more specific, the aroma is mildly caramel malty and mildly fruity hoppy.

Full Tilt is better on the palate; at least the hops don't run away and hide. The beer tastes amazingly like pink grapefruit juice. I don't mean that in the usual 'hops taste like citrus fruit' sense, I mean that in the literal sense, as if someone squeezed a pink grapefruit into my glass. It's odd for a beer to taste like fruit juice, but I like it.

It's still recognizable as beer, of course, since the juiciness is a little watered down, allowing the caramel maltiness to peek through. The total amount of flavor is on the low end. What's present is pretty good though, as long as I don't think of it as an IPA. It's sweeter than it is bitter prior to the finish and is balanced when the finish arrives.

Bittersweet pink grapefruit juice lingers on the tongue in an appealing fashion. The mouthfeel is a bit busy, but it's a fine fizziness and is easily tolerated. This is an easy beer to drink. Even though I'm not bowled over by the flavor, the bottom of the bottle is fast approaching.

Harbor City Full Tilt IPA is a decent effort that is far from a world-beater. It isn't even a state-beater when one considers what's available in Wisconsin. It did grow on me though, and if it was distributed in Iowa, I just might pick up a sixer every once in a while.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2005 15:52:28 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of beveragecaptain

New Jersey

2.68/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle. This beer pours out amber colored with a large creamy head. The aroma is sweet and fruity, like pineapple. The lack of hop aroma makes me suspicious. The flavor is light, fruity, and nutty. There's a buttery flavor too. This beer is weird, and I don't like it. All of these odd flavors combine to make a mess. Not much hoppiness either. The mouthfeel is a little weak. I'm not at all impressed.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2005 02:37:59 | More by beveragecaptain
Photo of maxpower


2.78/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cloudy orange-copper color with a large frothy head that leaves some lacing in my glass, citrus and bready aroma. Hoppy fruity and caramel flavors with a mild hop bite, medium body with a creamy soft mouthfeel, finishes with a clean and pleasant bitterness, a very average english style IPA.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2004 21:46:06 | More by maxpower
Photo of ZAP


2.05/5  rDev -30%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Not much of an IPA here...nose is more butterscotch than hops....body is very thin....an OK malt component is there with a hit of some piney hops but it is so subdued and the body is so light this feels more like a below average pale ale to me than a very below average IPA...

This is not what I expect an IPA to taste like when I pour one open...perhaps Tyranena or New Glarus could could ship a few to the eastern part of the state to give them an idea...I did just get an OK hop burp so there must be some in this but they are muted by the butterscotch and malt..

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2004 04:26:24 | More by ZAP
Photo of GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

3.43/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured hazey golden amber with a very slight white head that fell quickly to the edges of the glass but laced it slightly.

The aroma was slightly malty with caramel and a slight hop impression. Slight fruit developed as the beer warmed mainly peaches or apricots.

The flavor was slightly malty with the balance just slightly toward hops and the bitterness increasing the longer the beer is savored.

The finish was dry with slight bittering lasting into the aftertaste. The body was medium to medium light a bit on the thin side.

12 ounce bottle, thanks to Skidz and BIF10.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2004 22:47:36 | More by GCBrewingCo
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Full Tilt IPA from Harbor City Brewing Company
72 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.