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Imperial Spruce India Pilsner - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial Spruce India PilsnerImperial Spruce India Pilsner

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

365 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 365
Reviews: 148
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 18.62%
Wants: 118
Gots: 39 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  7.15% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
Original batch (from Imperial Series--750 ml bottles) was 10% abv. New, 2010, 12 oz. bottles are 7.15% abv.

(Beer added by: hoppymeal on 06-30-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 365 | Reviews: 148 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dnh2
4/5  rDev +2%

dnh2, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of syrupjoe
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into pint glass.

Pours a light hazy golden wheat color with a one finger off-white head.

Nose is a pungent overripe mango blast, with slight pine and lemon notes.

Taste is very piney, juicy and peppery with hints of barn funk and strong bitterness.

Mouthfeel is slightly syrupy, with medium to low carbonation.

Overall a very very interesting beer - I have never had anything like it. Hard to drink a whole pint, but enjoyable in small amounts.

syrupjoe, Nov 12, 2011
Photo of Slatetank
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

thanks to akorsak for sharing this, this was the 12oz version.

The beer is deep golden like apple juice with great clarity and thick cream cap, carbonation is visible and lace sticks haphazardly. The smell is both vegetal and pungent like a fresh cut spruce bough, the hops seem to come through as more vegetal/herbal but the spruce really is the main aroma drowning out most of the malt aroma. The feel is smooth and spicy with slight hop bitterness which turns to a sharp prickly acidic spicy texture as it goes down.

The Flavor is intriguing to me, it tastes as you might expect with some bitterness present from the hops with slight citrus edge, but mild in relation to the deep woody and almost tannic sharp acidic and earthy pine-like taste that comes forward in the peripheral and lasts into the finish with only a mild amount of pilsner malt light cracker elements. Overall I found this to live up to the name, it was woody but not so astringent that it was undrinkable. I found the feel to be not very pilsner-like, but that really isn't the point of this. The spruce is conveyed in the taste more than any other spiced or other flavored beer and still compliments the base beer very well.

Slatetank, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of womencantsail
3.1/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Steve for sending me this one.

A: The beer pours a slightly cloudy golden orange color with a finger of white head.

S: Intense floral and herbal hop aroma with lots and lots of spruce notes. An almost lemon pine sol sort of smell to it. Candied lemon peel and a bit of sweet malt.

T: Tastes almost completely of spruce and pine needles. Very lemony as well. Quite a bit of woody, maybe a little bit of fruit, too. Some sweet malt and a lot of savory flavors, too.

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

O: Just way too much spruce flavor for me.

womencantsail, Oct 08, 2011
Photo of prototypic
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spruce Pilnser pours a straw color. It’s very hazy and looks a bit more yellow when held to light. A white head caps it off. It’s rather modest, rising to less than a finger in height. It’s also quick to dissipate to a surface covering. It held there for a bit. Lacing was on the lighter side.

The nose is alright. It could use a little more strength, but isn’t bad. It kicks off with a scent that’s very similar to pine. Must be the spruce. Not bad. Hops are noted and have a citrus lemon scent. Smells like pine too, but that might still be the spruce. Can’t tell. Smells a little malty and a bit sweet. Alcohol is blended very well and isn’t all that noticeable. Pretty good. Just needs more strength.

The flavor is interesting. I’m on the fence. It definitely has a strong, distinct spruce flavor to it. It does tasty a bit like pine. Pilsner malt is definitely noticeable and actually acts as a really nice backdrop. Tastes a tad sweet. Hops are rather strong in the mix. They feature citrus flavors of grapefruit, lemon, and pineapple. It’s definitely bitter and a bit dry. Maybe some pine, as well? Alcohol is a little noticeable, but doesn’t come through as strong. Finishes sprucey and a little bitter. I’ve now made up mind – this is good stuff.

Spruce Pilsner has a medium. Carbonation feels light and soft. It is nice and smooth. It definitely goes down easy. The spruce flavor grows a tad tiresome. I like the 12 oz. bottle serving size. Good call there.

Short’s Brewing Company has a knack for blazing trails. Spruce Pilsner is definitely a unique, trailblazing beer. How is it? Good. Personally, the spruce aspect seems a tad old by the end of the bottle. But, it does work well with the pilsner malt and strong hop flavors. Definitely worth checking out if you have the opportunity.

prototypic, Oct 02, 2011
Photo of oline73
3.28/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this on-tap at the brewpub. Poured into a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a half finger of off white head. There is some really great looking lacing.

Smell: Mildly sweet malt with a hint of pine tree and some herbal notes. Pretty mild overall.

Taste: Initially mild, some malt and a strong pine taste. The finish is a bit earthy and a bit like chewing grapefruit rind rubbed on a christmas tree.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with mild carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: Way too bitter in the finish killing all the other flavors. Otherwise I thought this beer was quite nice and very interesting.

oline73, Sep 09, 2011
Photo of weizenbob
4.65/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this at the brewpub last month and was really impressed. I was excited to find this bottle at Jimmie Garant's in Alpena, MI. This was bottled on 8/20/11. It was poured into a pilsner glass...duh.

A moderate pour yields three big fingers of fluffy, bone-white head. Retention is fantastic. The brew is pale golden and hazy. Awesome amounts of lacing lines the entire glass.

Unfortunately this bottle is heavily skunked. I suspect mishandling at Jimmie Garant's as this was a loose single sitting near a window. I should have known better, but I've been craving this brew since I first tasted it. Skunking notwithstanding (my rating will ignore it), this beer smells quite literally of spruce. Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree! A tart lemony twinge manifests in the middle of the aroma. Supposed high-alpha hops are totally tamed by pine. I have smelled no other beer; nay, no other beverage like it. Your enjoyment of the aroma will wholly depend on your feelings toward coniferous trees and whether or not it weirds you out to smell it in drink form. I happen to like it...a lot

Descriptions of pilsner flavors often bring forth adjectives like "delicate" and "subtle". Make no mistake; there is nothing subtle about this beer. C'mon; this is Short's we're talking about. The flavor comes on blunt and strong with lots of oily spruce. Balancing out the spruce is a brutal dose of bitter hop oil. That's it: two alpha flavors slugging it out. Luckily the two flavors are distinct, complimentary, and manifest separately of each other.

It's a pleasant experience in the mouth as well. Riding the line between light and medium bodied, the feel compliments the flavors well and adds up to a beer that is thirst quenching and refreshing. Carbonation is pleasantly fizzy. It doesn't feel very pilsner-like, but it works on its own terms.

Short's does some weird things and most of their brews are hit or miss affairs. As far as Spruce Pilsner is concerned, this is a big hit. It is my new favorite Short's seasonal as well as my new favorite Pilsner. Absolutely awesome!

[As an odd side note, I believe that I'm having an allergic reaction to the spruce in this beer. I work in the landscape industry and throughout the years I've noticed that any time I come into contact with spruce trees I develop a rash. Both times that I have sampled this beer have been followed by an evening of itchy skin and difficult breathing. I don't care; this beer is worth the reaction.]


The Two-Schlitz Scale: (see my profile for an explanation)
For all their oddities, Jimmie Garant's had no Schlitz on hand. Regardless, I enthusiastically give two Schlitz for this amazing brew.

weizenbob, Sep 08, 2011
Photo of BBP
3.35/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A- There's a strong resemblence to lemon juice in the appearance. The only thing that ruins that is the slight film of head. No lacing is there to be found.

S- The aroma is quite strong. I could imagine finding this scent in a cleaning chemical. It smells crisp and nice, but the furthest thing from natural.

T- There is a ton of spruce in this, especially in the beginning. Imagine the taste of spruce and concentrate it. It's not subtle. The hops come out soon after as the spruce slowly fades. The drink is far closer in style to a IPA than a pilsner, but I can't say I've ever had an imperial pilsner before.

There's some biscuit malt as well as hints of caramel. The drink maintains a good amount of bitterness throughout.

M- Medium full with a dry stickiness from the hops that comes out immediately. It's somewhat rough as it goes down, but since it sticks around, the flavor lasts a bit longer. Fair enough tradeoff.

O- Yet another interesting beer from Shorts. I don't think I'd buy this one again, but I'm glad that I did try it. I would be curious how it would mix with other beers though, to perhaps round it out a little bit. This may actually be what I consider one of Shorts stranger brews, and that's saying something. Buying a single rather than a 6pk is highly recommended.

BBP, Sep 05, 2011
Photo of pmarlowe
3.3/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

No bottle date. Poured into a Mason jar. Yep. Thanks to scoot1969 for throwing this one in!

A: Pours a pale golden color with maybe a half finger of white foam. Pretty good lacing and so-so retention.

S: Smells like barbecue sauce. Straight up. I am not kidding. Maybe its just an unholy spruce/orange/pale malt aroma that is somehow coming off as barbecue sauce. I don't know, I'm not a chef. It mellows a little as it warms. A little lemongrass.

T: More in line with what I was expecting: very sprucey (?), a little crispness, with a moderate-high bitterness and pretty long finish. Actually, it's a pretty interesting, kind of like a cousin to a piney IPA. The bitterness lasts for several minutes. Pretty impressive.

M: Mouthfeel is very tannic. Carbonation is low and lightish body is overwhelmed by the bitterness.

O: Interesting, and bonus points for the novelty, I guess. I had trouble finishing the bottle, though.

pmarlowe, Sep 01, 2011
Photo of claminat420
4.88/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

got at short's a couple days ago.

A- poured a transparent golden color. frothy white head that left a nice bit of lacing.

S- just some crazy pine needles.

T- the pine needles are hit more with the hops i can tell. i drank a 12oz bottle yesterday and have to say that. really delicious.

M- seems more lighter bodied coming in the growler. good carbonation.

Drinkability- shoulda got another growler!

Overall- the growler tastes alil different than the bottle. like i said it seems like the hops are coming through more there. really tasty!

claminat420, Aug 19, 2011
Photo of ryantho00
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle to a nice English Man United pint glass!! It pours bright golden brown with a really nice foamy wwhite 3 finger that leaves a nice cloudy lacing throughout the glass and drink.

Instant spruce and pines hops from first whiff to last taste. This is really almost similar to a robust IPA, slightly like double crooked tree, but a little more intense and less grassy flavors and much more hops and spruce pine needles! Damn, its really throughout the entirety of the brew, those spruce needles and pines, but really well done and balanced on the background of the malt of the pilsner, which is just the right blend and balance to create this substantiallly great beer. There are nice hop overtures throughout which blends and adds to the beer with some bitterness and spice. I get some brassiness taste to the brew but not an offtaste which just adds to the drink; and a small hint of citrus, mainly grapefruit. Most of the flavors tasted here are also detectable through the nose and initial smell.

Really nice medium bodied fresh crisp beer that goes really nicely with spicy spicy food in the summertime. If you like bold flavored beers, and robust IPA'S I RECOMMEND THIS BREW, REALLY WELL DONE.

(I know this isn't an IPA, however, this imperial pilsner is similar and delicious, and BOLD)

ryantho00, Aug 17, 2011
Photo of dirtylou
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on-tap, Brickhouse - Madison

from notes

appearance: served in a shaker pint, bright hazed golden body, light filmy white cap

smell: spruce tips, floral citrus hops, pilsner malts. unique and potent

taste: ive had this a few times at festivals in the past and have always enjoyed - the spruce tips really make drinking this beer a cathartic experience that places your palate deep in the forest - green and fresh, earthy and organic, hoppy yet still traceable back to the pilsner malts. Nice.

mouthfeel: fresh and clean, medium-light body

overall: very nice

dirtylou, Aug 17, 2011
Photo of Tripphop
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden hue, glows in the glass. Whispy white head appears and fades to lace. Aromas are very piney. Good hop presence and the spruce wafts in and out. Flavor is very nice, very bitter and foresty. The spruce is nicely integrated, the massive hops carry it through and there is enough base malt to give a slight balance to it. Definitely hop forward but nicely done. Definitely the best spruce beer I've had.

Tripphop, Aug 12, 2011
Photo of litheum94
3.55/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Something is stamped on the label, but I can't read it at all.

P: Hazy, saffron body. Fingers worth of bone white head. The thick cover settles to a smattering of bubbles. Not much lacing.

A: Smells like walking through a grove of spruce trees. Lots of sage spicing. Can't really smell much past the evergreen aromas.

T: The first sip is absolutely overwhelming with sage and hop bitterness. It was a true punch to the face, and I was a little scared to take another sip. It does mellow out afterwards. Forest flavors of spruce and pine needles, with a dash of sage. Dry, cracker malts mid-palate, with a slight honey sweetness. The finish is extremely bitter, completely drying out my mouth. Some herbal and pine hop flavors absolutely destroys the mouth.

Wow. The bitterness runs rampant in this beer. The spruce adds a nice touch, but it needs some more balance.

litheum94, Aug 11, 2011
Photo of phishisphunk
3.03/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A bottle generously provided by Strangebrew321. Thanks Adam. Much appreciated.

Served out of the refrigerator at about 45 degrees-ish into a pilsner glass.

A: This one pours a light to concentrated yellow. Almost neon with intensity. Neither hazy or opaque, but not translucent either. A huge fluffy white head presents it self and quickly implodes into it self. Looks as if some placed a melted marshmallow right on top of my glass. Very inviting brew.

S: Everything you would expect to find on the nose is there. Broken down into components one is greeted by a light, vibrant floral nose with whiffs of pine needles and citrusy hops. Together, they meld to create a Pine sol/Lysol aroma thats becomes difficult to shake once recognized. Not sure whether to be off-put or intrigued by this. But I expect nothing less from Short's as their beers tend to be rather intense.

T: Hmmm, I'm struggling to find that clean, crisp lager build I was expecting and I'm instead imbibing a very aggressively hop forward and bitter bruiser of a beer. I imagine the use of the spruce tips amplifies the impression of hops. Mid-palate presents a very juicy and citrus hop bite that I rather enjoy. The finish is piney and dry, almost like biting into a grapefruit rind. Lingers long and bitter. Tends to lean more towards an IPA, but not quite. I rather like it, however, that Pine-Sol flavor is in there as well. Definitely an interesting take on a "Imperial India Pilsner" or whatever that means.

M: Carbonation is pretty standard here. Helps lift the flavors through the palate. Nothing to detract form the overall experience here.

O: Another beer that presents what Short's does best. Lots of intense flavors without feeling too convoluted. Couldn't drink more than one or two a night, but could have no problem revisiting frequently. A little off the mark for a pilsner, but the basic pilsner premise is in there and creating one is an exact science. Short's just took a mad scientist approach. Enjoyable and recommended.

phishisphunk, Aug 08, 2011
Photo of scottfrie
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into SA perfect pint. Thanks to jbck109 for this one.

A: Pours a slightly hazy lemony-yellow with a very dense bright white head that took forever to faded into a long lasting frothy film that left a ton of lacing down the glass.
S: Dominant notes of spruce but I also smell sweet peach juice for some reason. I smell a lot of peach actually. Strange.
T: Nice bitter flavor with very ‘green’ notes of spruce and leafy hops. The sweet peach is right there in the background as well. I get a few notes of pale malt, but for a pilsner, this tastes a lot like a pale ale.
M: Thick frothy carbonation over a medium body creates a smooth and full mouthfeel.
O: Pretty interesting beer all around. It’s definitely got a clean, sharp bitterness going for it which sounds like what the brewer was intending. One of the better beers I’ve had from Short’s. Thanks again, Jay.

scottfrie, Aug 06, 2011
Photo of baconsausage
2.75/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Have you ever put a bit of spruce sap right in your mouth to see how it tastes? Having spent a lot of time in the woods I have done this on many occasions, cause I like the taste. I cant say the same of this beer.

The beer pours a nice golden color with a thin head of white bubbles. Pure spruce in the nose, with just a hint of hops and sweet malt. This has all the apperence of a beer, but almost none of the taste. Like eating spruce sap right from the tree. Way too much spruce for me. I drank half of my half of the bottle and topped off my glass with whatever pale ale I was drinking, and that was about as much spruce as I wanted in this beer. I was looking forward to trying this (as I do alot of Shorts beers), and was dissapointed (as I am with a lot of Shorts beers).

baconsausage, Aug 03, 2011
Photo of SupaCelt
3.45/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pours with all of the golden beauty pilsner malt graces us with. gold beers with big character are so awesome. very little noticeable carbonation and some lovely stark white cling wrap for the sides of the glass.

the nose reminds me of Christmas as blue spruce has been the traditional tree of choice of in my family. and of course beer smell is generally in the air as well. it takes me away. definitely spruced up and sappy smelling.

the taste seems to cause vacillation in opinion. love at first gulp gives way to a creeping tarnish. the unique and spruced up quality suddenly becomes clouded by thoughts of pine sol and even vick's vapo rub or halls cough drops. you could puke and then scrub the toilet bowl with it.

the mouthfeel is appropriate. medium heft. the carbonation bubbles are sparse, but the tongue prickles nicely and things feel velvety.

overall, this is another head scratcher. I appreciate the pushing of the envelope and the sheer novelty this brewery has been known to pump out, but repeating an experience with this brew has proven to be a chore. a single bottle may have left a better taste behind, but an entire sixer is a cumbersome load that lingers without a solid place in the rotation. buy one try one or buy six and trade five and let others get a taste.

SupaCelt, Aug 03, 2011
Photo of matt20102
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow- where to begin? You don't come across a beer like this everyday. If you didn't know that it was a 'spruce' beer you'd be forgiven for thinking that it was a really strong IPA without much bitterness- but everything else that American hops contribute to a beer. This beer is resinous and hoppy but not necessarily bitter. The word 'resinous' keeps coming to mind. This is an odd beer- there's no ignoring this fact. It is good, though. The malt is well-managed and plays the right second fiddle to the hops and spruce which is meant to be center-stage. The spruce is interesting is that it really isn't 'piney' at all. Once again, it is the resinous nature that is the overriding flavor component.

The aroma is really quite faint, consisting mostly of pine resin. Pours with a short head that dissipates quickly to a thin lacing.

Definitely try this beer, if only for it's unusual nature, although you might be best advised to split that 6-pack among friends. That being said, it does what it's trying to do exquisitely well.

matt20102, Aug 01, 2011
Photo of GRPunk
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (filled a little low in the neck tsk, tsk, tsk) poured into a pilsener glass. Labeled simply as "Spruce Pilsner"

A- A conservative pour created a 1-1/2 finger, white head. The body was a fairly clean gold color, just a step or two past straw (much lighter than the full flavored beer would suggest). Moderate carbonation. The head sustains at a nicely covering film. Wide rings of lacey stick are left on the glass.

S- That's piney. Resin, needles, cones, seems like they are all in there. Generous hops too. No way the malt is missing either. Sugary, sweet, and bready. It all comes together like something of a toasted slice of rye bread at points. Hints of citrus poke through once in awhile.

T- It starts off hoppy, has a malty middle, and boom goes the pine at the finish. I was initially thinking this was a full-flavored IPA before the burst of pine. The malts are a little grainy and sweet. Later in the glass, the pine becomes more prominent, even a little overwhelming by the end.

M- Full bodied, chewy even. Moderate carbonation. There's a significant bite and drying effect from the hops and pine. Any higher ABV is well masked.

O- This is another great experimental brew from Short's. The actual spruce tips work with the hops to really showcase what a pine profile can accomplish. That said, as the pine qualities build, this becomes a single serving sort of beer. I won't hesitate to crack open my second bottle at some point, but back-to-back would be a bit much for me. The pine does overwhelm or become a little long by the end of the bottle.

GRPunk, Jul 31, 2011
Photo of Roke87
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle, chilled and poured into a pilsner glass

Appearance- Pours a light yellowish colour with a slight haze to it, but not enough to call it a hazy beer. Gentle pour yields about a finger of white head that quickly dissipates to a very thin almost afterthought of a head with a nice ring around the glass leaving minimal to no lacing throughout till finish.

Smell- Lots of resin and pine needle aromas coming from this one right away, a nice fruity flavour comes forward next and smells a lot like apricots, the nose is very interesting with lots of sweet notes and a bit of bitter aromas to balance it out as well, a good start.

Taste- Interesting tastes as well, very bitter right off the bat from the resin and pine needle tastes, some bready malts in the middle, that finish almost sweet in the finish from the fruity grapefruit and apricot aromas that transfer into the taste. Although some notes really remind me of eating a pastrami sandwich, not sure why that’s just what I’m getting out of it?

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied with average carbonation this one goes down smooth and crisp with a bittersweet finish to it.

Overall- From the aromas in the beginning right down to the last drop of deliciousness left in the glass, this is a very enjoyable beer and probably one of if not the best pilsner that I have had to date. Very enjoyable and a very well balanced and complex pilsner as well, great bitter flavours from the resin and pine needle, a nice mixed of hops and bready malts, and finishes with a somewhat sweet flavour of apricots and grapefruit. I was pleasantly surprised by this one as I had somewhat low expectations when I first picked it up at the liquor store, but am now wishing I had picked up more than just a review bottle. Would definitely pick this one up again and will be on the lookout my next trip down to Michigan.

Roke87, Jul 31, 2011
Photo of merrittwithmerit
4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Short's Imperial Spruce India Pilsner

A. A lovely golden color, slightly cloudy, with a finger width head with lots of lacing.

S. Wow! Super piney and sweet with fruity undertones.

T. Exactly how it smells, with a bitter chaser. Light and smooth.

M. Light and very easy to drink. A pleasant bite lasts after the last sip.

O. I love this beer. It's different enough, exciting enough to be exactly what a summer evening calls for. Piney and sweet, and just right.

merrittwithmerit, Jul 28, 2011
Photo of warnerry
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear straw/golden brown. Moderately vigorous pour yields only one finger of head. Lots of sticky lacing.

S - Huge resinous spruce and pine with a strong presence of grapefruit as well.

T - Slightly astringent taste with massive spruce/pine bitterness. I'm really enjoying it. Grapefruit hops eventually come through. Leaves a long lasting bitter finish.

M - Oily, resinous mouthfeel coats the palate. The bitterness on the tongue seems to last for hours. Intense but good.

O - This is a very good offering from Short's. The strong bitterness may not be for everyone, but I really enjoyed it.

warnerry, Jul 26, 2011
Photo of cetherid
3.48/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip


Slightly hazy pale gold color which a huge amouth of pillowy white head. Great lacing going on the sides of the glass as the head dissipates. A nice looking pilsner!


Nose is freshly picked spruce ends with a little bit of lemon and menthol (like some vick's vapor rub). A slight booze presence is noticeable as well. I was expecting a bottle of pine-sol but it smells like you're in a pine forest. Surprisingly enjoyable nose.


Here is the Pine-sol I was expecting. Some pale malts right up front with a huge overpowering pine solvent taste afterwards. Literally like someone added a few drops of Pine-Sol to your normal Imperial Pilsner. Bitterness is pretty much from start to finish and the pine-sol lingers around for what seems like eternity.


Medium bodied with great carbonation with a slightly dry finish.


Wackiest beer I've had from Short's. There are parts that are enjoyable to this beer but the taste is a little too much to enjoy more than a bottle. I recommend people to seek this out however because of the novelty/craziness of it. Obviously there are many people that enjoy it given the A- grade here on BA. I wouldn't turn down a pour/bottle of this but doubt I'll seek it out.

cetherid, Jul 24, 2011
Photo of king75
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- This one is a medium to dark gold in appearance with about a solid inch of off colored foam head that sticks around with plenty of lacing.

S- This one smells strongly of pine needles, a slight hint of hops, and a slight hint of grape fruit.

TM- This one is really bitter and has a bite all the way through. The pine needle taste is overwhelmingly the dominant flavor, with hops and citrus nodes making an appearance throughout as well. This one leaves the palate feeling extremely tangy and dry.

Overall, this is a hophead or spruce lovers dream! Very memorable and unique enough that one is not quick to forget it. Overall, a very solid beer and very indicative of the style.

king75, Jul 24, 2011
Imperial Spruce India Pilsner from Short's Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 365 ratings.