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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.
BA SCORE
88
very good

376 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 376
Reviews: 148
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 18.37%
Wants: 122
Gots: 38 | FT: 3
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: 376 | Reviews: 148 | Display Reviews Only:
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.

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.

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).

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

A.

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!

S.

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.

T.

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.

M.

Medium bodied with great carbonation with a slightly dry finish.

O.

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.

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.

Photo of Wadsey
3/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Short's Imperial Spruce India Pilsner

Served in New Belgium globe glass

A: Pours clear pale gold with fluffy white head that falls quickly and leaves rings of lacing. Little effervescence. 

S: Strong spruce aroma, so strong that it borders on Pine-Sol. Some mint and solvent. A hint of ammonia or cat pee, too.

T: Starts off with a note of sweet, biscuity malt, which is immediately crushed by a felled spruce pine tree. I've previously described some beers as tasting like hop detergent. This sets the standard. Soapy, hoppy detergent joins Pine-Sol and rinses out my mouth. Additional tastes include: evergreen, pinecones, and Christmas cheer. High bitterness. Finish is a mouth full of pine needles and hop cones and seems to last for twelve days. 

M: Medium-high body with medium bitterness. Tingly mouthfeel and super drying. 

O: I admire the inventiveness of Short's Brews and the manner in which its brewers execute their inventiveness. They are brewing visionaries. I have no doubt the beer I am drinking is exactly what they set out to make. I just don't like that beer very much. 

Thank you, hurfer, for the opportunity. 

Photo of FosterJM
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

646th Review on BA
Bottle to Pilsner
12 oz.

Thanks to Kzoobrew for this one

App- A light mid yellow with a semi puffy one finger head. A little bit of a hazy, muddled color as well. Slow to recede with nice cling lines.

Smell- Wow, this thing is very aromatic with a lot of pine, resin. A little bitter on the nose and get some sweet notes.

Taste- There is a lot going on in this glass. Very layered profile of flavors with some pine, then bitter, some hoppy notes. It's a unique taste to this one.

Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbonated. A bit malty aftertaste but loses the bitter and pine.

Drink- This was very tasty little beer that was quite new and unique to me. I'm not normally a pilsner fan and even more a double or imperial. Shorts does some good stuff.

Photo of diybrun
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a wine glass

A - Golden yellow, robust head with slight lacing that lasts for the entire beer

S - Pine, citrus, not picking up much booze which is nice

T - Wonderfully complex and spicy, very bitter up front, a light but distinct malt presence keeps this beer from getting ahead of itself. Definitely doesn't taste like a 7.1% alcohol beer.

M - Moderate to slightly high carbonation which works pretty well with this beer. The hops and spices are potent while not cloistering the beer and bombarding the taste buds. This has a light body and it is high on the 'drinkability' scale.

O - I like this, and I look forward to trying it next year.

Photo of StoutHunter
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of Short's Imperial Spruce India Pilsner last week for $1.79 at The Lager Mill. I decided to give this just released beer from Short's a shot, I don't know how an Imperial Pilsner with Spruce tips will be but if anybody can make a weird sounding beer like this good, it would be Short's, let's see how it goes. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pilsner glass.

A- The label on this beer looks good, it looks like it is a drawing of a hop leaf with spruce tip in the background. It poured a nice slightly hazy golden yellow color with three fingers worth of fluffy white head that died down to a thick rocky layer that stayed the rest of the time and left some nice rings of lacing.

S- At first this smells like it is an IPA with a big piney aroma. The aroma is pretty much a nice mixture of citrus hops, with grapefruit sticking out the most along with a little bit of lemon, pineapple, and mango's. The spruce tips are pretty evident there is no missing it, the spruce goes good with the citrus hops aromas and comes together to make a pretty unique aroma, especially for an Imperial Pilsner.

T- The aroma gives you a pretty good idea for what your getting yourself into when it comes to the flavor. It starts out with with a great powerful mix of citrus hops with all the nice fruits that I picked up in the aroma mixed together with that piney and resinous flavor from the spruce tips, both are very bold and in your face and I like that. In the middle I pick up some sweetness from the pale malts that helps balance out all those hops and spruce tips. The finish was nice and it had a medium amount of bitterness to it, with Imperial Pilsner's I have come to expect a super bitter finish, this one was toned down a little and I liked that, I think a heavy amount of bitterness would be too much for this beer.

M- Crisp, clean and medium light bodied with the perfect amount of carbonation. The mouthfeel was spot on for a Imperial Pilsner.

Overall I thought this was a pretty good and unique tasting beer. While Imperial Pilsner's are not the most popular or interesting style, it's a style that I like and I think Short's does to since they brew two good ones, when most breweries don't even brew one descent one. I was unsure how this style would take to the spruce tips but Short's as always proved that they know what they are doing and the flavors end up complimenting each other and being pretty complex. My only complaint with this beer is the drinkability. with all those bold flavors in your face it would be tough for me to want to grab another one, one of these is all you need. If I had to compare both of Short's Imperial Pilsner's I would say that The Curl was more drinkable, but this one had much better flavor, I think I liked both equally. After trying this I think I may go back and get a couple more bottles, I would get a six pack but with the low drinkability I may not be able to get to them all before they get too old. I would recommend this beer to most anybody, unless they hate hops, it's so unique that it needs to be tried at least once. This is another odd beer from Short's that may not sound the most appetizing but ends up delivering in almost every single aspect. Short's did a great job with this brew, I can't seem to say enough good things about this awesome Michigan brewery.
Edit* Just had the 2012 release and I am bumping the aroma up to a 4, it's full of blue spruce and grapefruit. I really like it, this one of the beer that I always anticipate Short's release, it one good and intense beer. Update, I just tried the 2013 release and this one is almost a different, it's so much more balanced without the tons of bitterness I have got in years past. I like this one almost as much as the other years, it's much more drinkable, but it doesn't have that super intense spruce flavor like years past, it's good and it seems like the intestity was toned down to enhance the drinkability, I think the Pilsener base shows up much more in the years release, it's still a damn good beer that I always look forward too.

Photo of DannyDan
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a light golden yellow with a white head that has very good retention and lacing. The carbonation is good also. The nose has a strong pine and citrus scent to it. The taste starts out with some pine and citrus hops that stay in the taste. The mouthfeel is smooth, but on the dry side and overall it is a nice pilsner that reminds me of a strong IPA.

Photo of pb9613
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: This beer pours a beautiful gold color with a nice white head. The body is a little hazy but while the head retention is excellent.

Smell: The aroma of the spruce hits like a sledge hammer but there is a slight citrus and floral note.

Taste: The bitterness of the spruce and hops are huge but the sweetness of the malt comes through in a beautiful balance.

Mouthfeel: Extremely light with high carbonation which is typical of a pilsner

Overall: Avery good solid beer with a huge pine aroma and flavor. I will definitely buy this beer again.

Photo of techfed87
4.63/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Head is slightly lower in the glass than I would expect from a beer like it. Color is a light amber, fairly normal for a pilsner-like beer. Smell on the other hand smells full of pine needle resin. Having had it before a while back, I'm really looking forward to the refresh.

First sip is very rewarding. All of the pine resin flavor that came off on the nose comes off as an excellent herbal addition to the overall flavor of the beer, carrying what would usually be an alright pilsner to new levels of awesome. Mouthfeel is great, as is the aftertaste, which diminishes nicely over time.

This really is one of my favorite Short's seasonals. You really should try this if you find it in stock. It really is an experience to be had.

Photo of goblue3509
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden yeloow color with a tight one finger soapy head which gives way to a little bit of lacing. The aroma is of big bold spruce, it is like sniffing a christmas tree, there are hints of lemon and citrus underneath, but the big star is the spruce. It is very inviting. The taste has a hint of lemon at first, but then big big spruce taste. Very piney and oily and very bitter. It is a very unquie taste but very enjoyable. The mouthfeel is moderately carbonated. Overall it is a very solid beer, it has a bigger bolder yet smoother flavor than other spruces I have tried, overall just a very good beer, it left me wanting more.

Photo of gnemesis
3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Drank a 12oz bottle poured into pint glass on 7/28
Golden Hue with a thick white head.The nose is full of hops. Some citrus, herbal, pine (spruce), slight sweetness buried somewhere beneath. The taste follows suit and the malt quietly attempts to add balance but lets face it- this one is hop forward and heavy on the spruce. This brew had a medium body and had medium carbonation. I liked this tasty treat but perhaps too much spruce for me to have more than one.

Photo of stakem
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Review from notes taken 1/13/10. Bottle I believe care of goryshkewych, thanks!

Poured into a sniffer, this brew appears a perfectly clear golden yellow color with a finger of fizzy white head that quickly recedes. It leaves lacework on the glass that is a bit leggy.

The aroma of this brew is hoppy with lemon scents, a bit earthy and is strikingly reminescent of a holiday wreath. A big, bold scent of spruce sits overtop a light amount of fruity esters which seems a bit out of place for the style but overall is enjoyable in that Short's different kind of way.

The taste of this brew is herbal with lemon and quite a bold, oily and resinous feel. The spruce is not subtle at all, it is very bold, bitter and lasting. Somewhat grassy in flavor to an extent as it warms, this brew is significantly more bitter than expected with a lasting spruce taste inside the mouth.

This is a medium to light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. The spruce brings out a lemon and oily bitterness which is very bold. Certainly not your typical pilsner, this brew was a little rough going down. Interesting take on the style and certainly something different that is worth a try.

Photo of drabmuh
3.48/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle shared by Thorpe recently, this was not easy for me to drink, it is a liquid tree. I did not like it as much as others.

Beer is yellow and hazy with a nice head of small and medium bubbles, some lacing, interesting.

Aroma is spruce...like pine extract...super strong.

Beer is too dry, too high in alcohol, and too....much like a tree. I do get everything you'd expect from licking a tree including wood and spruce needles, it's just way too much for me. Congratulations, it's a tree, you've done it.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge, huge thanks to jale for giving me this bottle just because. Thanks again!

Pours a slightly-hazed golden-orange color with a good white head with mild retention time and a slight collar on the way down. The nose is incredible with ginormous amounts of heavy spruce and pine. Really quite awesome. The taste follows down the same path. Not sure how else to describe this other than to say that the spruce character is nearly overwhelming and I absolutely love it. Bitter and resinous, the mouthfeel is killer. I could drink this until my mouth completely dried out. Delicious.

Photo of SpdKilz
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours into a generic tulip with a golden color. About a finger of slight tan head is achieved with a relatively vigorous pour, which dissipates at a moderate pace leaving nice looking lacing.

Smell - So many hops, so much piney goodness! No joke I put my nose in the beer by mistake while smelling it. A perfect smelling beer for Christmas!

Taste - Not as heavy as the nose but still right in your face. This is a bit older than when I first tried it (had it this summer and has been sitting in my cellar ever since) but still has some great bitterness and amazing pine.

Mouthfeel - Medium to lighter bodied, moderate carbonation.

Drinkability - Relatively so for the style. I love Short's because of their impressive way to make a beer that sounds like it would be bad, to be damn good. Cheers!

Photo of billab914
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish shaped pint glass. It poured a slightly cloudy, pale golden color with a bright white head already sticking to the sides of the glass. The head continued to stick to the glass as I drank it to leave some great lacing.

The aroma has a great mix of hops and spruce to it. I get the spruce first with a fresh, pine, forest like quality to it. The hops give it a big and bright citrus flavor that really compliments the spruce nicely.

The taste shows the spruce throughout the beer as well. It has more of the resiny, pine, fresh quality to it. The hops again really make the beer with the complimentary citrusy, grapefruit flavor. It's moderately bitter in the finish with a little dryness as well. The spruce lingers for a bit.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, I really liked it. I've had spruce beers before and wasn't impressed at all, this one however is different. I really liked how they mixed the spruce with a lot of citrusy hops. It was very drinkable and added some very cool flavors and a twist to a hoppy beer. Very nice beer overall and I have to say I'm surprised I liked it so much.

Imperial Spruce India Pilsner from Short's Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 376 ratings.