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Decadent Imperial IPA - Ska Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Decadent Imperial IPADecadent Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

733 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 733
Reviews: 346
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 14.52%
Wants: 32
Gots: 70 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Ska Brewing Co. visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RockyTopHeel on 12-30-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 733 | Reviews: 346 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Norfawkers
3.97/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A complex, flavorful Imperial IPA without an overpowering maltiness that hinders other double/imperial IPAs

Appearance: Clear amber with sufficient head

Smell: Robust/floral, hops, malt

Taste: Malty hops, slight toast, a hint of sweetness

Mouthfeel: Smooth with lingering bitterness in the finish

Drinkability: Versatile, sippable, robust; a decent all around IPA

Photo of Cresant
3.08/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured this waxed 22 oz. brown bottle into a Sierra Nevada Hops glass. The body was bright golden-amber and clear. The moderate head left minimal lace.

Smell was sweet and spicy. Herbal, earthy hops. Alcohol blossomed as it warmed.

Taste was primarily a big sweetness of malts, followed by a grassy bitterness.

Mouthfeel was medium to full bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.48/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured out of a red waxed, 22 ounce bomber bottle into a pair of shaker glasses. Psycohops grabbed one, I snatched up the other. Appears a hazed rich apricot color with about an inch of dense, lingering off white foam. Nose and flavor are of pine, grapefruit, lemon, toasted grains, caramel malt. I was hoping for more from this one, I mean come on, it's wax dipped 8-l Body could be a tad fuller for an IIPA. Check it out if you must.

Photo of cbros
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving type- 22 ounce bomber poured into a mug.

A- Pours a murky red and orange color. There is no carbonation activity after the pour. A small one finger head that seems to disipate quickly. There is also little cling to the glass.

S- The smell is really muted to me. I am getting hints of hops and citrus but nothing is overwhelming or even normally present.

T- The taste of this beer to me feels more like an amber ale than a traditional Imperial IPA. I am getting a muted tsate of hops and I am really not getting any citrus flavor that I would expect from an Imperial IPA. This beer tastes completely different from what I was expecting.

I picked this up after passing it over at teh beer store many times. The price was finally what persuaded me to give it a try, at $5 a bottle I figured that I wasn't losing much. This is not what I expected and even after readjusting my expectations I am still not sold. I probably won't be getting this again but I still would like to try some more stuff from Ska to see what else they offer.

Photo of ledomelor
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass. The candle wax top is a has a great aesthetic look.

A: Pours a reddish-copper color, a little cloudy with a finger white head with a little lace that stays around

S: Grapefruit and other citrus fruits as well as a pine hop aroma, very sweet smelling, nice hoppy aroma and the presence of alcohol

T: It has a very sweet and hoppy bitterness at the same time, lots of citrus and pine hops that are countered by sweet caramel nodes. Wouldn't say that it ever created a nice balance between the sweetness and the bitter, however it did hide the 10% alcohol rather well.

M: Good full to medium bodied beer, a tad too carbonated, good after taste, a little sharp, however it goes down pretty easily

D: Fairly drinkable, just the bomber was fine for me. I was definitely feeling the 10% after I was done

Overall: Good IIPA, although I've had better, I would give this one a try.

Photo of bfields4
3.18/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light apricot amber opaque body with a yellow hue. Light lacy head.

Very citrus nose sweet pale and caramel malt follow.

Initial hop bite fades to a mellow sweet grainy toffee butterscotch and caramel malt flavors. Peppery hot alcohol finishes.

Lightly carbonated and heavy on the booze. I love hoperandi, but I'm not sure I can quite embrace this one. Not a bad brew, just was expecting something special from these guys.

Photo of COBeerBuff
3.23/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

One of the few SKA beers available now in Kansas...

Appearance: Pours a gorgeous clear dark reddish-copper with a finger and a half of white head that looks quite billowy as if it will remain around for a while. The lacing down the sides of the glass is awesome and picturesque all at the same time.

Smell: Pine and juniper scents off the top. Some pineapple, grapefruit and citrus hide in the back as well, but this beer is overwhelmingly hoppy bitterness.

Taste: Abrasive hop bitterness doesn't really meld into a malty sweetness as one would expect with many of the more rounded DIPAs. This beer starts off as a bitter, citrus, hop bomb, and finishes as a bitter, citrus, hop bomb.

Mouthfeel: The fruitiness and sweetness of the beer create a very sticky mouthfeel. The beer, initially starts as crisp with the ideal carbonation, but the sweetness and the bitterness of the hops takes over and leaves a very interesting aftertaste.

Drinkability: The 10% ABV is not understated in this brew. The alcohol is not very well hidden, and the hop bitterness will pretty much destroy any palate so future brews will not be able to be enjoyed. I like the hop bitterness, but I wish there was a more complete mouthfeel and flavor profile. This beer just feels overdone.

Photo of webbcreative
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured dark amber color with white 3 finger head. A= caramel. Piney smell, pretty typical.
T= whoa that suckas sweet! Not hoppy enough to be called. DIPA, but there is some hop bitterness in there, this has got the bitterness of an IPA but the malt of a DIPA, my tastebuds say this is more barleywine-like, but yet it's still good. The alcohol isn't that dominante...at first, but you know it's there on the way down, gets ya in the throat.
M= reminds you this is indeed a DIPA, as it's it's pretty much exactly where it needs to be, well IMO at least.

Overall this is a decent DIPA, a little too sweet for the style, but it's hood for a beer. I would drink again, but probably not buy again.

Photo of KCHops
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours a clear burnt amber color. One finger head that subsides fairly quickly but leaves a thin layer throughout drinking.

S - Grapefruit and pine hop aromas with plenty of sweet, caramel malt. Picking up on a slight hint of alcohol as well.

T- Pinapple Citrus and pine hoppiness balance with sweet toasted, caramel maltiness. The bitterness is really mellowed out by the sweetness present. It is sweeter than the typical DIPAs I drink. Alcohol is present and carries in the aftertaste deep in my throat which is something I don't care for.

M - Pretty full bodied with a nice level of carbonation. Has a nice rich feel to it and is definitely smooth going down.

D - The alcohol lingering in my throat prevents me to think that this would end up in my fridge again. But I would be happy to drink it if someone else is providing it.

Photo of jrallen34
3.15/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from the tap into a pint glass.

It pours dark red almost vrown with a big white head, very good lacing, amber orange in color.

It smells like your normal IPA with citrus and caramel.

The taste is ok, but nothing special to distinguish from any other IPA. It tastes sweet to start but then is bitter and just sour.

Photo of aristeros
3.83/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First Ska brew. Cool bottle, with the Maker's Mark whiskey-style wax on top. Poured into my Bodum pint glass. I'm optimistic.

Medium amber, very active carbonation, excellent clarity. A finger of off-white head with some lacing. The sweet citrus notes and floral hops hit me from three feet away. Up close, the citrus breaks down into grapefruit, oranges, and a bit of lime, with the almost floral back. Sweet malts, too.

Citrus rind and slightly tart orange flavors up front, heavy on the sweet malts, almost a honey flavor to them. Some resins. Somewhat boozy on the back end, with a slightly dry mouthfeel. Sweetness and ABV hurt the drinkability a bit, but it's very well masked on the front end of the sip, though.

Not the DIPA I was expecting, but there's a decent amount of stuff going on here.

Photo of Goliath
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pretty clear amber color with a half inch slightly yellowed head. Retention is decent, and there is some spotty lace as well.

The aroma is delicious. Big hop notes smack you in the nose with bursts of citrus and pine. A light malt presence comes through in the background as well.

The taste is ok, but a little disappointing. There is a decent hop presence with a light citrus note and a big sappy pine note. There's a bigger malt presence in this one with a bit of caramel and a light breadiness.

Mouthfeel is really nice. It's full bodied, slick and oily, with a light carbonation. Really what I like to see in an Imperial.

Drinkability is fairly high. The alcohol is high but very well incorporated. The flavor profile is decent, though it leaves me wanting for a bit more which is a bit uninspiring. It's a shame because the nose lead me to believe it would be something more. On a brighter note though, the mouthfeel is spot on for me. Overall I'm pleased.

Photo of GarrisWH
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a slightly hazy burnt reddish amber color. One finger head that subsides fairly quickly but leaves a thin layer throughout drinking. Leaves nice lacing.

S - Grapefruit and pine hop aromas with ample amounts of sweet, caramel malt. Picking up on a slight hint of alcohol as well.

T- Citrus and pine hoppiness balance with tons of sweet toasty, caramel maltiness. The bitterness is really mellowed out by the sweetness present. Slight alcohol in the flavor, but pretty mild for 10%.

M - Pretty full bodied with a nice level of carbonation. Has a nice rich feel to it and is definitely smooth going down.

D - Quite drinkable for 10% abv. I probably wouldn't need more than one bomber, but nicely balanced and tasty overall. I definitely see why they named this one Decadent, it is a very rich beer and an enjoyable offering overall.

Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear copper color with burgundy highlights. It had a thick, tan, two-finger head of foam that left some sticky lace.

S - It smelled of grapefruit and other citrusy aromas. The was also a nice pine smell with a subtle caramel notes.

T - It was very spicy up front with a sharp bitter hop bite. There was a nice burnt toast maltiness with sweet grapefruit flavor.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a very good Imperial IPA. I greatly enjoyed my first ever Ska brew.

Photo of jsh420
4.23/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a hazy amber orange with a 1 finger head that leave notches of lacing down the glass

smell is not powerfull but i pick up both tropical fruits little pine and and sweet malt

taste is much the same as the smell but strong orange and pineapple hops balanced well the the malts much like a hoppy barleywine with pine hops in the aftertaste

mouthfeel is good not heavy like you might think after the flavor but full medium body beer with decent carboantion that leaves a nice creamy finish

drinkability is good - but look out at 10% you may just want to limit yourself to 1 bomber or split it

Photo of LauraAlberts
4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

nice 22oz bomber with wax seal

Appearance: Decent lacing/retention - I've seen more in other DIPA's - nice dark/burnt amber color - Makes me think it's not going to be on the citrusy side of the style.

Smell: Malt, Salt, Sugar, hint of lime, hint of citrus

Taste: Hop essence there - but not the kick - alcohol innuendo perhaps? Sea Salt - I feel like I'm eating an oyster at times - this would be great with oysters. Some sugar. Grapefruit - melon - hint of peach - some citrus - lime - lemon drop

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied - thin but not watery. Nice mouthfeel - a little dry on the finish.

Drinkability: Sipper for me - not the most sessionable DIPA because of the maltiness and the abv - well balanced and great beer to celebrate a decade with. I look forward to trying more of the Ska lineup

Photo of david131
3.08/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- A slightly hazy orange liquid with a thick, creamy white head that leaves some nice lacing. Not too shabby.

S- Some pine and citrus with a bit of caramel. Slightly funky like a gym sock. Not too bad, but smells like an IPA, not a DIPA.

T- Pretty mild for a DIPA. There is some citrus and pine, but the sweet malt really shines through. The alcohol is not as harsh as you would expect, considering the mild flavors. Overall, it is a bit numbing and not all that memorable.

M- Sticky and sweet with a low carbonation level. Not really what I enjoy.

D- A very average beer. A little too sweet and bland. This will knock you on your ass too.

Photo of Mdog
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark orange-amber, big head.

Smell: Sweet citrus.

Taste: Nice sweet citrus, a little tropical fruit punch, not a lot of bitterness.

Drinkability: The bomber went down really quick. Not a bitter assault.

Another solid beer from Ska. This DIPA is kind of on the sweet/malt side instead of tongue bruising bitterness. That's not a bad thing, still gives plenty of hop goodness.

Photo of siradmiralnelson
3.15/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Where are the hops?

Poured from 22oz bottle into Tulip.

A- Huge frothy head appeared when poured. Redish/orange color. Nice lacing on glass.

S- Suprised that the first smell I got was the sweetness from the malt. Playing second fiddle is the hop aromas of pine and citrus. Definitely not the hop blast that you get from other DIPA's

T- Not surprising after smelling, is that the first taste is sweet. It was actually hard to detect the bitterness of the hops over what I got was a biscuity malt taste. Hop presence is very muted for a DIPA.

M- Light/Smooth. Low carbonation.

D- Big let down for an interesting looking bottle, and what I thought was going to be a "Imperial IPA".

Photo of snpub540
4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After an agressive pour I got a 3/4" khaki colored head that lasted for quite sometime. The beer is a slightly hazy reddish bronze with some copper tones when held to the light.

Smell is of grassy, floral and citrus hops. Smells exactly what an Imperial IPA should smell like, ALL HOPS!

Taste was very smooth which I wasn't expecting. I expected a harsh bitter hop assault but it never came. The hops are piney and grassy with some grapefruit notes. The malt backbone quickly steps in with a sweet taste and calms everything down.

Mouthfeel is almost creamy. The alcohol is hidden very well in this beer and doesn't seem like it is a 10% beer till more than half of the bomber is gone. A very good Impy IPA in my opinion.

Photo of bigbelcher
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color is a copper color with a big billowing off white head. The head has good retention nice belgian lacing. The aroma is is malty sweet with a bit of a citrus scent. The flavor is sweet and malty like the aroma. Only a light amount of bitterness for a double IPA, most balanced towards the high abv malt. The mouthfeel is full bodied with light carbonation.

Photo of jwinship83
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a rereview of one of my first beers here on BA. 22oz bottle without any freshness info poured into my duvel glass.

A-This one pours out a dark amber colored body with a skim of off white colored head. no retention, and mediocre lacing left on the sides of my glass.

S-Strong smell of piny, citrus hops with a nice caramel malt backbone. small whiff of alcohol

T- starts out with sweet caramel malts, and then come the hops. lots of pine and citrus flavors. the alcohol comes through stronger than in the nose.

M- full bodied and rather syrupy. strong warming from the alcohol. low level of carbonation.

D-Goes down pretty easily and is an inexpensive hop fix. glad i revisited this one, it shows me how much my palate has changed/evolved. one is plenty for a sitting.

Photo of SFLpunk
3.32/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to my coworker and friend Val for hauling this one back in her suitcase!

22oz brown glass pry-top with red wax over neck. No date.

Appearance: Incredibly clear, ever-so-slightly reddish amber with a thin white head that leaves lots of lacing.

Nose: Hop candy! Dusty dry hop flowers, an underpinning of a medium-malty aroma, white sand, and something a little like an old house in the winter without the heat on. (?!)

Palate: Really bitter up front, but subduing quickly into a malty sweet, light- to medium-bodied IPA. The carbonation is light and the flavors are of dried leaves, gritty "shake," malt-fruit, something a little wax-y, varnished wood, and maybe candied orange peel. Finish is moderately long.

Notes: Seems to me the crowd is right: a decent beer, but not as huge as it could be. If this was their standard IPA I'd be more impressed. It lacks body and mouthfeel, and the finish is a little simple. The lack of body is equal with a lack of complexity or intensity in flavor. Oh well.

Photo of nick76
3.54/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is very hoppy with citrus and pine as well as caramel malt. The appearance is light amber with a small and sudsy. The flavor is like the aroma with plenty of alcohol and bitter hops. The palate is average. Overall it's good but not great. Still worthy.

Photo of rye726
3.33/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Was not overly impressed by this offering. Pours an amber color with a tan head. The nose has malts, unbalanced hops and booze. The taste is also a bit boozy for the style. Hops are again way out of balance. Medium body is over carbonated. Not a bad beer, just needs a little work.

Decadent Imperial IPA from Ska Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 733 ratings.