Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Highland Devil’s Britches IPA - Highland Brewing

Not Rated.
Highland Devil’s Britches IPAHighland Devil’s Britches IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

53 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 53
Hads: 263
Avg: 3.67
pDev: 29.7%
Wants: 5
Gots: 49 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Highland Brewing visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BigTrubble on 01-29-2013

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 53 | Hads: 263
Photo of BigTrubble
4.64/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

You can’t go wrong with Highland Brewing Co. beers so I bought a six pack of 12 oz. bottles to try this beer. Devil’s Britches was released Mid January and I am excited to get my hands on it.
It pours a deep weathered copper. One finger of thick frothy head that is there throughout even resting on the bottom of the empty glass. Good lacing around the glass that hangs around.
The smell of this beer is amazing lots of sweet citrus fruit and floral undertones over a sweet malty backbone. As it warms the herbal scents really come out.
The taste up front is pure citrusy bitter hops that hit the tongue followed closely by the savory sweet malts. The flavor of this beer is very well balanced, awesome hoppiness that is well balanced by the toasted biscuity malt bill.
The mouth-feel of this IPA is slightly viscous compared to most with a smooth silky mouth feel. Just the right amount of carbonation to tickle the tongue and prepare the taste buds for the onslaught of flavor.
Overall Highland Brewing Company’s Devil’s Britches is and excellent beer. I could drink this beer every day and never grow tired. Not merely a hopped up red ale, but actually an amazing take on a style that is so popular and often underwhelming. Devil’s Britches is well balanced with an excellent malt bill that holds up to the Apollo bittering and finishing hops and Calypso dry-hopping. Highland describes it as a red IPA and a twist on the great American IPA which is a statement that it truly stands up to and surpasses. I have been very impressed by Highland’s beers and am happy to see Highland releasing new beers. I can’t wait to see what they brew next.

 1,666 characters

Photo of Romaniac
4.49/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bought a 6 pack in late January (Cary, NC.)

Appearance: Copper in color. Slight visible carbonation. 1/2 finger head.

Aroma: Moderate floral, citrusy hops, and caramel.

Flavor: Moderate hop flavor at first, slight sweetness noted, ending very well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth. Moderate carbonation, crisp and leaving you wanting more.

Overall: This is truly a well made IPA, not too thick, not too bitter. If you like tasty beers, this is a must try. Best IPA I have had from NC.

 489 characters

Photo of RyanPoff
4.39/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Review from notes a few weeks ago.

A: cherry wood color with about two fingers of white head with pinkish hue. Original and excellent

S: Strong piney hops. some light citrus. Terrific.

T: Again, strong piney bitter hops predominate. Wood notes. Some hints of fruit in background. A Classic IPA. No residual aftertaste

M: Medium body full of carbonation and life.

This is one of the best IPAs I've ever had.

 411 characters

Photo of CIBoy10
4.29/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look - pours an slightly orange red with nice white creamy head and lacing.

Smell - malt, a little citrus hoppiness.

Taste - Hop profile is more on the fruit punch side and I really like that. Solid malt biscuit flavors on the finish for a great balance. I'm a fan.

Feel - smooth, creamy, carbonated appropriately.

Overall - Because it isn't aggressively hopped I feel like it is underrated. A very nice well balanced IPA that impressed me.

 445 characters

Photo of farrago
4.23/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hits you with two fingers of highly whipped up and loose foam, quite delicate and dimples easily, sort of eggshell white in hue, leaves a lot of thinner yet sticky streaks of lacing. Bright amber red in color, immaculately transparent with a few scattered beads of active bubbles. The nose is peppery with a saline quality too, dried grapefruit and orange pith, rye, pine tar, gets more floral as it warms, same for the cocoa powder and apricot to peach fruit scents, complexity sort of sneaks up on you. Medium-bodied, tight weave to the carbonation, lively with erect posture. On the dry side yet there’s tang in the orange, grapefruit citrus and great support from the pine, pepper, black tea leaves, forest scrub accents. Has moderate malt backbone, mostly powdered chocolate, not that sweet, more texturally softening. Really grips the palate, sticky and resinous, even factoring in that carbonation. The fruit is mainly apricot, pineapple and peach with a hint of red cherry. Long aftertaste, hoppy bite refuses to let go. Pushes the hoppiness card but doesn’t overplay its hand, nicely balanced.

 1,106 characters

Photo of suspect
4.21/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Dogfish Head Snifter. Thanks to Bulbman for the hookup.

A: Pours pure amber, crystal clear. Mostly aggressive pour leads to a thick, rocky off white one-finger head that fades reluctantly. Leaves sticky slug trails along the sides with bubbles clinging for dear life all the way down. Very nice looking beer.

S: Very nice up front hop presence. Brings the yin of the citrus (grapefruit, but one on the sweeter side) and some crushed pear and then brings the yang of the pine resin - almost like the smell left on your fingers from carrying your Christmas Tree to the curb once it has served its purpose. Malt background is nicely present and unique from other IPAs I've had. They eschewed the typical IPA malts for an Ashburne Mild malt and it really stands on its own nicely. Picking up some floral notes and a bit of the breadiness from either the yeast or the malts on the end of the nose.

T: I must have a very fresh bottle because the hops are beautifully blended with the malts. The Apollo hops do not overpower on the bitterness but slide nicely in towards the back of the tongue. There is a nice fruity flavor that hits in the middle and the bittering hops round out the tast. Good mix of flavors.

M: Sharp biting finish yet smooth and coating. Medium bodied beer.

O: An excellent take on the IPA and this one is most excellent. I would definitely buy this beer in quantity.

 1,420 characters

Photo of rangerred
4.2/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a pint glass out of a growler from Libation Station in Johnson City, TN.

Pours a clear dark reddish-brown with a thick off-white head. Really good head retention and lacing.

The aroma is full of pine and earth along with a noticeable roasty character. Also toffee and caramel all working in perfect harmony with the hops. A really nice balance and definitely more British than American.

The taste has more in the way of hops than the aroma with tons of pine along with a little bit of Earthyness and dank. Just a tiny amount of citrus in this one. Nice malt character with caramel and toffee and just a little bit of roast. Very assertive long lasting bitterness along with a full and creamy mouthfeel.

Overall, while this is only 6% it feels like a much bigger beer with the substantial mouthfeel. A great IPA and one of the best beers I have had from Highland.

 880 characters

Photo of shand
4.14/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Devil's Britches pours out a stunning crystal-clear red. The aroma is fantastic, there's a big pine and earth presence on the nose, along with some citrus hops and sweet caramel malts. The taste doesn't quite live up to the nose, offering a tasty yet less intense than expected piney/herbal hop along with some citrus notes and a quick hit of sweet malts. Aftertaste is minimal. The mouthfeel is on the light side, with a higher level of carbonation. Now, one thing I do like that doesn't effect the review is that I do rather enjoy that this is released as a late-Winter seasonal, giving a much needed couple of months until their fantastic Spring beer comes out.

 664 characters

Photo of BeerZack
4.13/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark copper color with nice off-white head that laces the glass. Smell is definitely hop forward, spicy, almost grassy, but very fresh with a noticeable sweet caramel maltiness right underneath with whiffs of burnt toffee. Flavor is similar to the aroma. To my delight the layered maltiness does not overpower the hops at all, but lends the beer an interesting balance. I like it.

 380 characters

Photo of tdm168
4.08/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A - dark amber with a big, pillowy, white head that has decent retention

S - herbal, spicy hop aroma with a bit of a peppery spiciness

T - light caramel, big spicy hops, peppery spice, some faint herbal notes, intensely bitter finish

M - medium bodied, smooth, well carbonated though crisp

This is a decent IPA. It had a different flavor profile than I was expecting, but I was basing that idea on their Kashmir IPA. This spicy hop character is intense and welcomed. This is a solid, balanced beer with great drinkability. I recommend it to any hop head or Highland fan.

 574 characters

Photo of thagr81us
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to one of our regulars that visits a shop I work at part-time for bringing a sixer of this for us! Served from bottle into a shaker. Poured a slightly hazy red-orange with a one finger slightly off-white head that subsided to a minimal amount very slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, earth, earth hop, citrus, citrus hop, and marijuana. The flavor was of sweet malt, marijuana, citrus, citrus hop, and earth. It had a light feel on the palate with high carbonation. Overall this was a good brew. When I saw the sixer of this come in I was rather intrigued as I had never heard of this one before at all. Fortunately what I found was definitely a really good representation of the style. Nice citrus notes going on here with a little bit of nug going on as well. It was really well balanced and quite easy to drink. Definitely worth your time to do so yourself.

 936 characters

Photo of scotorum
3.99/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Amusing name, bought for the Scottish brewery name and graphic and the fact that it was inexpensive and not available in my home state.

"Filled" 1/8/14. Three months old.

Poured from the 22 oz. bomber into a glass tumbler.

a: Clear copper with a two inch tall offwhite head which receded to even surface foam and dense patchy lacing.

s: Caramel malt

t: Caramel malt with butterscotch notes and quite a bit of hop bite for balance. Bittersweet finish with some bitterness lingering on the sides of the tongue. Towards the end strong fruit notes emerge.

m: Light to moderate. Lots of carbonation tingle.

o: A deliciously different IPA, similar to what my ideal Scotch Ale might taste like but hoppier and with not as much body. Inexpensive too, the bomber was only $4. Wish I could get this in my state, but distribution seems limited to the South.

 853 characters

Photo of KYGunner
3.96/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark copper color leads to a stiff and thick white foam on top.

The nose is fruity with a lemon, grapefruit and tangerines. Slight pine and herbal hop character is notable.

The flavor is well balanced as the hops are herbal, floral and piney but a sweet caramel and maple malt flavor is evident. Not as much of the fruity hop flavor can be found but wisps of grapefruit hit you here and there.

The feel is easy and dry but has a bit of tart astringency.

This was a nice surprise. Highlands always makes good stuff but rarely are their offerings discernible with the rest of the pack. This on the other hand was done very well.

 630 characters

Photo of mattkoon
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

devil's britches ipa pours a reddish brown with white head. the smell is very hoppy. its pungent. the taste is very bitter with a strong dose of hops. there isnt much citrus at the finsh but i do feel like there is a hint of sweetness. over all a strong ipa. i like this one.

 275 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.92/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle of Devil's Britches, dated Jan. 2013, poured into a snifter.

Pours clear, dark reddish-brown in color, with a thin off-white head. The head has good retention and leaves ample lacing.

Appropriately hoppy IPA aroma is primarily herbal but also floral and with a bit of pine and a faint hint of citrus. A secondary malt presence adds some hints of baked bread and caramel. A well crafted mix which, happily, carries over to the taste. The flavor is very well balanced, although hops partially dominate the biscuity malt component, as should be the case in an IPA. Still, hop level is more like a PA than an IPA. The flavor is more earthy than suggested by the aroma, but not all objectionable.

M: Medium+ body with a smooth mouthfeel, soft carbonation, and a dry finish.

Overall: An excellent, satisfying and moderately distinctive ale.

 855 characters

Photo of Ryan011235
3.89/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into an Allagash glass on 3/27/13

Burnt tobacco; quite clear with a head just shy of two fingers. Thin, smooth retention and tightly speckled, sandy lace. Thick rings of lace further down.

Herbal and piney hop aroma with floral bleed. Full biscuit aroma sets the backdrop for the zesty hops. The taste is spicy with pine resin and brash herbal hits. The malts are full without being obtrusive. Bitterness is moderate throughout and rough on the finish. The finish is also a little dusty. Medium-full for the style with a resin-sticky feel is offset by fairly smooth, puffy carbonation.

I've had several of these and the Devil's Britches fit just fine.

 661 characters

Photo of thehooksman
3.87/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This red IPA pours a rather clear redish-orange that is just a little lighter than good southern sweet tea. The head was beige and foamy but only about half a finger. The aroma is very nice citrus hops, apple, and a hint of spice and the flavor is like it. It has a nice medium body that is sweet and carbonated up front that turns crisp and finishes dry as you would expect from an IPA. This is a very well-rounded offering from Highland. My favorites from this brewery tend to be the seasonals. This and the Clawhammer Octoberfest are among them.

 554 characters

Photo of coasterfreak75
3.84/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pour: Orangeish red with a nice creamy head that dissipated rather quickly and left a nice lace on the glass throughout the drink.

Smell: Heavy citrus hop oil smell with undertones of sweetness in the rear of the nose.

Taste: This is where this beer fell short to me. The front is a kick of hops that quickly gets overtaken by the sweetness of a red ale. The finish is a slight hop bite that lingers, but not too long.

Feel: Easy drinking, slight carbonation on the tongue.

Overall: This one fell slightly short in my book. It almost seemed that they had an overly sweet beer and tried to off set it with hops to create an IPA. Still a good beer, just not a great IPA.

 681 characters

Photo of silverking
3.79/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It pours a clear red with a tan head. Head retention is good with some very nice lacing. The aroma is, well, strange. Very earthy/woodsy. It smells like the forest after a big rainstorm. It tastes grassy with a slight bitterness. It's a lot lighter than I expected. The finish shows some grapefruit. The mouthfeel is light and dry, but the carbonation is low enough to make it all work. Strange, but good.

 405 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.79/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a deep, dark, toffee coloring. Crystal clear with a slow, steady carbonation throughout the body and a filmy, low-profile, off-white head. Nose of floral hops, citrus highlights, dark resinous characteristics, and some roasted notes. Flavors are heavily roasted as well, with a strong resinous backbone, rich toffee blend, and sharp citrus highlights, heavy on the grapefruit. Heavy on the palate. Smooth, robust body, with a roasted sweet and darkly resinous aftertaste that transitions into a bitter, drying finish.

 570 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.77/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Lighter and crisper ales can often times get a fair nod. And the hoppier IPAs obviously find favor on the beer scene. But its the "balanced" American Amber Ales that usually get left behind. Well, the talented brewers at Highland have reinvented the style and, in doing so, developing a taste that's uniquely American.

The ale pours with a frothy dark amber color with redish-brown tones seemingly of mahogany. Its near-bright character highlights those chestnut highlights beautifully. Topped with a creamy and semi-firm foam cap, the beer's bone-white froth retains sturdily and trails with broken lace in its wake.

Toasted malt and hops frame the ale's overall scent. Grapefruit and fresh orange peels give the ale a vivid and snappy scent. Its backstage support from over-cooked caramel, bread crust and roasted pecans allow for a slight candied but toasty scent to balance the citrusy hops. A moderate scent of burnt pine needles rise as the first drink draws near.

To taste, much of the same transpires- its malty-sweet upstart is caught between caramel and toffee. Weave in those toasted nut flavors and the taste of "Cracker Jacks" candies come forth. Its middle palate introduces the hops which take command thereafter- pink grapefruit and orange zest become playfully acidic, as the ale trends crisp, refreshing and dry late. Its developing bitterness is sharply resinous with pine and freshly herbal mulled grasses. Its finish is short except for the lingering acute bitterness.

Medium-dry for Amber or IPA, the ale's short-lived sweetness quickly releases its carbonation and gives the ale a lift right from the get-go. This leads to a toasty-dry finish that's assisted by hop resins, moderate alcohol warmth and its mild hop-derived astringency.

The ale works beautifully as it more of an Amber Ale that retreats from the maltier and heavier versions of Ireland and England and trends drier and hoppier for that American attitude that's quickly emerging.

 1,972 characters

Photo of Onenote81
3.77/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Stopped in to Finnegan's Wake here in town, and saw this one on tap. A new one for me. Came out a rusty amber, rather than a pale orange that characterizes many IPAs. Small beige head on top. Excellent lacing as I sip this one.

Fresh floral aroma with mild citrus and faint piney notes. Moderate body, really easy to drink. Carbonation is spot on. Slightly dry on the finish. Nice bitter snap right away that lingers a bit on the palate. Semi-sweet grapefruit, bitter rind, touches of candied malt.

This one isn't gonna melt your face with bitterness, and that's just fine with me. Where there's surely a place for that type, this one brings the bitterness, but in a toned down way that makes this a fine easy-drinking ale. Nice work, Highland.

 748 characters

Photo of avalon07
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a copper color and a clear consistency. There was a small amount of foamy head that quickly dissipated. Pretty good lacing.

S: A very underplayed aroma of hops, pine, and some malt.

T: Tasted of malt, light hops (less than you might expect from an IPA), pine, and a little tinge of citrus. Like the aroma, the flavor was very mild. Almost seemed more like an English IPA than an American version.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a prickly finish. Light- to medium-bodied.

O: A little on the tame side as IPAs go, but still worth a shot. Drinkable, but there are certainly other IPAs I would go for first.

 653 characters

Photo of bcsbeer
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured dark amber almost brown. Big light tan head with good retention and lacing. Picking up on the hops in the nose. The taste favors the sweet malts, biscuit, caramel followed up with some floral hops. Mouthfeel was thick and creamy with good carbonation. After taste was a little soapy. This was very malty for a IPA . Based on the taste and appearance I would have put this in the American amber/ Red ale style.

 416 characters

Photo of mntlover
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark reddish copper color, clear. Head is cream colored about thumb sized that leaves behind some good lace.

Aroma is floral, some light tropical fruit, pine hints. Overall its not bad but not very strong hop aroma. Hops are on a biscuit malt base. Not a bad smelling beer just not as hop forward as an IPA should be.

Taste is better then the nose at least as far as hops go. Good dose of hops on a biscuit malt base. Nice floral notes to start then moves to tropical fruits and finishes out with citrus and a pine resin bitterness.

Mouthfeel is big medium seems little fuller then it should with a pretty decent kick of carbonation.

Overall not bad not great as far as IPA's go but a decent brew. Love Highlands they brew a great many beers but IPA's are not their strong suit.

 790 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Highland Devil’s Britches IPA from Highland Brewing
83 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.