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Harpoon IPA - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Harpoon IPAHarpoon IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,905 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2905
Reviews: 1153
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 13.54%

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Harpoon IPA is an interpretation of the classic English style using hops and malt grown in the United States.

42 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-01-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 2,905 | Reviews: 1,153 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of scotorum


3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

a: Clear medium amber with a one inch white head which took its time shrinking to a heavy white surface film with some lacing. Impressive!

s: Faint fresh fruit.

t: Good medium plus hop bite.

m: Smooth. Attention-getting bitterness without being harsh.

o: Spot on for an IPA refresher, not overloaded with hops, although there is nothing wrong with that. Easy drinking and sessionable. This is an excellent IPA, especially hard to beat at its reasonable price point.

There was an extra label on the bottle which noted this IPA has been produced for twenty years now. Understandable after trying it.

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2013 04:31:39 | More by scotorum
Photo of charlzm


3.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Consumed on June 27th, 2013 from a bottle labeled "enjoy by 05.15/13. D'oh! Poured into a Samuel Adams "perfect pint" glass at 50 degrees F.

Beer is a profoundly clear, rich yellow-orange. A two-finger head of creamy, off-white bubbles forms during the pour. Provides clingy sheeting as the beer level gets lower...

Aroma is a little soapy, slightly sweet and graced with touches of citrus and subtle grass notes.

Flavor is mild and smooth. Husky grains rise up in the front with a splash of sweetness, then segue into a lightly herbal, grassy finish. Hop character is pronounced but not overbearing. What's the term so many American brewers forget about? Oh, yeah, BALANCED.

Mouthfeel is creamy with a little sharpness and dryness. VERY well executed.

I'll bet if I had this a little fresher, it might have been even better. As it is, a nice staple beer. We can't get this out where I live, but, if we could, I would be taking sixers of this to non-beer-geek parties.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2013 04:02:14 | More by charlzm
Photo of Oakenator


4.08/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours an amber to yellow color. Some head dissipates quickly. Minimal spotted lacing.

S: Hops - pine and citrus.

T: Bitter all the way thru - mild pine and a hint of citrus. Some malting present very late on the finish.

M: Nice carbonation on the to tongue.

O: Good but doesn't stand out above many other IPAs.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2013 01:15:46 | More by Oakenator
Photo of kojevergas


3.14/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Acquired today as part of a trade with the gracious michaellscoates - thanks, man! 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with uninteresting label art and standard branded pry-off cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its current ratings. Reviewed as an English style IPA per current notes. No ABV listed. "Best by 08/19/12" (acquired in a trade and served the day of receipt..)

Served cold, straight from the freezer. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a 4-5 finger wide head. Beige colour. Nice thickness. Decent frothiness. Slight creaminess; not enough. Pretty good (~4-5 minute) retention. Body colour is a clear pale copper. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Looks pretty standard for the style; not unique or special. I don't notice any overt flaws. Uneven inconsistent light lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Sm: Definitely English-style hopping; fuggles and noble if I had to guess. The malty end is dominant, with caramel and pale malts seizing prominence. A bit toasty and bready. A fairly strong aroma; certainly above moderate strength. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Appealing for the style; I haven't had an IPA with English character in awhile and this fits the bill.

T: Pale malts and caramalt; the malty backbone is strong here. Floral hops complement the simple body nicely. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Lightly bready with a hint of toasted character. Not much in the way of citrus. Not juicy, oily, nectary, or bitter. A balanced enjoyable IPA, but its simplicity does hold it back. No subtlety or complexity here. Just a barebones English style IPA with effective build. Limited depth and intensity of flavour. Average flavour duration.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Nice thickness. Not oily or harsh. Average/adequate carbonation. Decent presence on the palate. Suits the flavour profile generally well but doesn't feel custom-tailored to it. No complaints here.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable; very sessionable stuff. A no-frills English IPA that I could kill a 6er of. I doubt I'd get it again but I'm glad to have tried it. I wouldn't mind trying it on-draught at a good price. Hides its average ABV well. I wouldn't recommend it to friends, but it gets the job done and doesn't offend. Approachable pedestrian stuff. This would be a great beer to use to ease newcomers into the style.


Serving type: bottle

06-22-2013 04:18:00 | More by kojevergas
Photo of dmgeng


3.56/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Listened to the hype and gave it a try.

A - Very pale orange and crystal clear. Fine white head with some lacing.

S - Strong floral hop aroma dominates all nose.

T - Distinct and pungent floral hop flavor, as if eating a flower. Some grassy and herbal hints as well. Low to moderate malt that is mostly masked by the floral tones. Finishes crisp with low bitterness that sits on the back of the palate. No alcohol or caramel flavor.

M - low/moderate mouth-feel for an IPA with lots of carbonation. Carbonation adds a very slight acidity and a lighter body.

Overall, it's a nice change of pace from heavier or more citrusy IPA's. If you haven't tried it I would recommend trying it to understand the diversity that different hops at different times can bestow on a brew. I believe that this IPA's success is in it's novelty and less in it deliciousness. Don't knock it until you try it but not my favorite IPA.

Glass- English Pint

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2013 10:36:01 | More by dmgeng
Photo of MichaelRabdau


3.94/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Was really wanting to love this beer, having lived in Boston and love the town. I guess the fact that I had this immediately following Sierra Nevada's Torpedo Extra IPA, it really didn't stand a chance. I'll look at this again when there's no comparison, but on first blush, this is about as generic an IPA can get (consider the comparison)...

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2013 22:07:39 | More by MichaelRabdau
Photo of ChrisKayler


3.28/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Glass: Samuel Adams Perfect Pint.

Appearance: Perfectly clear pale yellow to pale orange. A finger of soapy bright white head is produced from an aggressive pour. Lacing sticks around beautifully and helps the rating here.

Smell: A bit of piney and citrus character, but overall relatively mild in smell. Nothing offensive, but nothing too exciting.

Taste: A bit of bitterness, with a relatively strong floral character. A bit of a "soapy" character in there as well. Malt is pretty balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with high carbonation. A slight oily texture.

Overall: This one is not bad at all, but certainly nothing special. It is pretty balanced, if that is what you like, but the floral character is not for me. Wouldn't buy this one again, but I wouldn't turn it down, either!

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2013 01:15:32 | More by ChrisKayler
Photo of dar482

New York

3.16/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had it straight from the bottle.

The flavor doesn't on spot for me for an IPA. It lacks generous hopping and a bitter tight finish. Instead it has big malt for a beer of the style. The mouthfeel is quite creamy.

In the end, it's a bit too mellow and middle of the road for me.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2013 22:13:31 | More by dar482
Photo of Zraly


3.94/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour a nice medium golden color with a two-finger white head. Nice floral notes upfront.

Clean, floral and citrus hop flavors resting on a sturdy malt backbone. Very well balanced and well made. Crisp and clean, finishes dry. Medium bodied. Carbonation is appropriate. It's not the latest and greatest, but it has been around since the 90s. I think that says something about the quality and consistency.

A nice, solid, easy-drinking IPA. I could drink several of these and not get tired; sessionable for sure. A great all-purpose beer for chicken, fish, and Indian dishes -- I'd love to have a dish with mango with this as I think the contrast would be nice.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2013 21:40:15 | More by Zraly
Photo of Eeroomnhoj


3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I don't have a fancy beer glass so I am drinking it straight from the bottle while listening to Richie Havens. The beer is a little but I think that is a good thing. I could drink more than one of these as they have a good flavor, not too strong and not too weak (a la Coors Light).

Unfortunately my Brother in Law is coming into town so I should probably hide the rest of the case before Friday.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2013 01:45:11 | More by Eeroomnhoj
Photo of CorvetteMike

Rhode Island

4.36/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

First introduced to this IPA at Brewery in VT. Sampled many Harpoon beers at tasting, and this is my favorite. Enjoyed this brew for many years.

a: Typical amber color
s: Citrus, and slight hop smell
t: Smooth taste, my favorite IPA
m: Medium body with slight citrus after taste
o: Favorite Eastcoast IPA

Will be visiting Harpoon Brewery in Boston soon.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2013 15:43:05 | More by CorvetteMike
Photo of Andrew041180


3.3/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a light amber/copper with 1 finger of head the reduces to a film, but never quite vanishes. Slight trace of lace on the glass.

S - I shoved my nose deep into the pint glass and smelled... nothing.

T - Unusual flavors for an IPA. Must be malt heavy, as it seems almost sweet to me, with a little bit of a bittery hop finish. The finish isn't half bad. No distinct flavors that I could point to. Tastes like a Harpoon. The beer. Not the whaling implement.

M - Thinner than I would like, but not too bad. A little above average.

O - For me this is one of those beers that I would order at a Boston sports bar when there are few better alternatives. And this does happen.

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2013 11:30:37 | More by Andrew041180
Photo of M_C_Hampton


3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a nonic pint glass, honey amber colored with a large white head that dissipates leaving some lacing, clear

S: piney peppery hops, slight malt, citrus

T: nice grapefruit flavor that fades into pine, dry throughout, bitter finish

M: medium body with good carbonation

O: nice IPA with a crisp finish, refreshing and light

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2013 01:30:25 | More by M_C_Hampton
Photo of alexgash


3.71/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle. Enjoy by 05/15/13.

Clear and clean medium copper body. Bright orange highlights. Small, gauzy, off-white head. Not much lacing. Fruity malt aromas peppered with spicy, piny hops. A little cookie. Smells of good balance and reminds me of a 90s American IPA (not necessarily a bad thing, mind you).

Toasted malt and herbal hop bitterness up front. Mix of fruit and caramel malt fill in. Slight sweetness. Hop flavors and bitterness pick up toward the finish. Herbal, spicy, and a little piny. Drier in the finish, but with plenty of lingering maltiness. Again, well-balanced, but hoppy enough to merit the IPA badge. Moderate body with a prickly feel.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2013 23:38:13 | More by alexgash
Photo of CapH

New York

3.09/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

A- Light amber, almost dark golden color. Nice head eroding to crisp ring.

S- Astringent malt followed by slight hop bitterness.

T- Fruity malty frontline followed by bitter hop tones in the back.

M- Crisp almost light mouthfeel. Not much body, high effervescence.

O- A solid IPA. More traditional English style than true American. Not bad at all. Nice drinking, enjoyable beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2013 22:02:42 | More by CapH
Photo of Goldopelgt


3.81/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Poured, from bottle, into my Duvel tulip (c'mon, give me a break, it was the only clean one!)...Deep amber hue, with a frothy white-ish head...Decent lacing on the glass

S: Some citrus hops upfront, with a good amount of toasted malt too...

T: Hop presence throughout, but not over powering...Slight heat of alcohol...Buscuit and hops linger on the palate...

M: Crisp, not overly carbonated...nothing to complain about here

D: A decent brew, wouldn't complain about revisiting this IPA, but, being somewhat of a hop-head, I kinda wish there was more of a hop presence...Really, just splitting hairs at this point, definitely worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2013 22:53:24 | More by Goldopelgt
Photo of bottle

3.11/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Characteristics: low carbonation, slightly hoppy, medium sweet (sweet aftertaste), very dry. No really dominating/characteristic taste, very balanced and average.

Overall a average IPA, not outstanding but not bad either, something you can have in the fridge.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2013 00:28:40 | More by bottle
Photo of micromaniac129


3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Harpoon IPA is pretty light for an IPA. It's more the color of golden amber. It has a small head and lightly carbonated.
Aroma are light too, with husky malts and minimal hops.
Taste bring backs those same husky malts with some bready or grain notes and not much way as far as hops are concerned.
Rough on the palette.
All in all drinks like a chain restaraunt IPA, solid but bland.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2013 16:04:54 | More by micromaniac129
Photo of EORS


3.76/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Golden with almost no head (what little there was was pale) and very minimal carbonation.

Smell: Herbal hops right out of the gate, with some honey/caramel/raisin sweetness as the beer warms up

Taste: Lingering bitterness balanced well by the malt body - a hint of citrus but mostly more of that herbal hop.

Mouthfeel: Light, would be crisp if there was more carbonation.

Overall: Don't know if the bottle that I had was a little flat, but a very drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2013 22:43:03 | More by EORS
Photo of scottbrew4u


3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Drank this so many times and am realizing now I have never reviewed this one.
A: Pours into pint glass a clear, orange-light amber color with a frothy half-inch head that settles nice and slow.

S: Hops up front with pine, tangerine, red grapefruit, and light floral notes. Soft sweetness from crystal malts with light caramel and doughy aromas.

T: Nice balance of pine and citrus hops and a semi sweet caramel, fresh bread and light roasted grains. It is easy on the palate with not much of an alcohol presence.

M: Crisp carbonation on a medium body with a dry finish.

O: This beer is a great easy drinking IPA that can satisfy a hop lover and also introduce a newbie to the IPA style. It is good any time of year and with just about any food. Try and enjoy!

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2013 01:47:06 | More by scottbrew4u
Photo of Davidjames321

5/5  rDev +38.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the first time I tried the IPA, and it is one of the best I have tried. The taste is very smooth and goes very well with the smell. I think this might be my new favorite beer company.

From the label I would have not thought to try it, but I do know most IPA's are good. However this one has a perfect balance of taste, smell and feel. I will surely try it again.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 20:23:56 | More by Davidjames321
Photo of mfnmbvp


3.05/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, says to enjoy by 02/15/2013. Poured into a Boulevard tulip.

A - Pours a clear copper color with one finger of head that disappears quickly. Steady column of bubbles rushing up to the top.

S - Malty and lightly hoppy. Smells hoppier than it actually is, if you ask me.

T - Taste is way more malty than it is hoppy, which is kind of disappointing. It is well-balanced, but I definitely wish it was more bitter and hoppy. Has a vague apple cider taste to it also, which is kind of strange.

M - A nicely bodied beer, with a nice resinous mouthfeel, and the lingering taste of green apple.

Overall, it's not a bad beer, but I like my IPA's to be ridiculously hoppy, and this beer disappoints in that arena. Nicely bodied, and tasty nonetheless, but as an example of the style it is a little bland. Solid 5.90% abv, and I got this 6 pack on sale for $5.99 so I guess I can't complain.

Harpoon IPA ---3/5.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2013 02:51:40 | More by mfnmbvp
Photo of rangerred


3.35/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear straw yellow with a smallish white head.

Strong pine in the aroma along with a little bit of light citrus. Some pale malt sneaking in there as well.

More pine and citrus in the flavor along with light bread. Some lighter caramel notes and biscuit along with a moderate bitterness. A nice balance between malt and hops. Mouthfeel is quite clean finishing a little sticky.

Overall, an extremely average but tasty IPA. Really I think this should be classified as an APA as it really doesn't quite make it to the IPA threshold.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2013 16:00:28 | More by rangerred
Photo of BottleOfPills

West Virginia

3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My serving type was a bottle poured into a Pilsner Flute.

My appearance was a quick forming one half inch head that quickly diminished. (I can relate to that). But a constant flow of carbonation was can be seen in the darkened amber fluid. I would say the color reminds me of a cherry stain or something lighter. (3.5)

Smell - if you've followed my other reviews, well you know that the smell of burnt hops is not something I write home to mom about, but this beer isn't over powering and in my opinion is quite light in hoppiness odor. (3.5)

However that "quite light in hoppiness" would not describe the taste as the hops come through in spades! Not over powering to me. I don't taste many of the florals that others have described, but that's typically not the way I describe things anyway. The taste is strong, but not over powering by any stretch. I could enjoy this with a steak. (3.5)

Now this beer is crisp in the mouth, and you know that makes a high score for me. 4.. I like. It tingles and cracks, and goes down easy.

Overall I got to go with 3.5 - it's better than I expected, and will buy again, maybe I'll aquire a more filling taste for it, maybe I haven't paired it with a great food. Not sure, but it is a good beer and I will definitly have again.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2013 00:46:23 | More by BottleOfPills
Photo of Maxwell


3.5/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a very clean golden color, bordering on amber, and displaying light pinkish tints. The beers body is very translucent and particle free, but the head is tiny and nearly nonexistent, which is too bad. What bubbles do appear, appear to from a small scrim-ring around the glass and are an eggshell white. The lacing on the sides of the glass is spotty and quite slick, only staying briefly before they return to the beer. On the nose, the beer smells of grassy and hay-like hops with a good sweet and slightly stale bread malt base and a light citrus touch. On the tongue, the beer tastes bitter with a great malty sweet playing alongside of it, but never fully meshing with the bitters. The beer begins with light caramel sweets and a faint bitter bite before the bitters open into a nice little punch with very slight citrus, grass, and hay notes. As the beer rounds out the bready malts build in the mouth to play alongside the bitters, and in the finish there is still a great bitter tingle with a fading sense of the bready sweet malts. Just as the beer drops down the throat there is very quick emanation of cereal malts, which quickly returns to the bready sweet aftertaste. On the mouth, the beer feels thin to medium in body, with a little tingle of fierceness from the carbonation, and a big bitter bite on the tongue. The mouth is left clean but for some slight saliva on the edges of the mouth and a bitter tingle in the tongue. Overall, this is a solid middle of the road IPA. It has a little more of a bitter bite than a true English IPA, but not nearly enough pine or citrus to be considered an American IPA. I think this is a terrific introduction to the world of hops and IPA’s, and definitely a recommendation for anyone trying to slowly convert someone else to the hops. The malts and bitters work beautifully side-by-side, but never quite mesh, which isn’t entirely bad. A great intro IPA, and a good beer that can be found outside of craft beer bars.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2012 19:50:39 | More by Maxwell
Harpoon IPA from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
82 out of 100 based on 2,905 ratings.