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Harpoon IPA - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon IPAHarpoon IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,533 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,533
Reviews: 1,184
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 13.81%
Wants: 55
Gots: 359 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (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
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Ratings: 3,533 | Reviews: 1,184 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of drotski
3.4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice thick foamy head, that thinned out quickly with lots of lacing.

Smell was alright, I expected to smell more hops. A definite sweetness to it.

Taste was decent, oakey but not as hoppy as some IPAs (a little less sweet and little more hop would of been nice).

Sort of a dry mouthfeel. Not bad overall.

Photo of danielharper
2.8/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Purchased from Great Spirits, Huntsville, AL. (New to AL!)

A: Pours dark yellow/orange color with a very thick white bubbly head. Clear carbonation on the bottom of the glass, slowly-rising bubbles. Very nice.

S: Sweeter than expected, strong sugary aroma, some oranges and a nice bunch of hops. Not exactly bad, but.. unexpected, in its sweetness.

T: About like the aroma, but with an unpleasant astringency on the backwash. Clean enough, but still a bit overly sweet.

M: Moderate thickness, a bit biting on the palate due to hops.

D: Reasonably drinkable. Not one I'll buy again anytime soon, but a decent beer that might make for a welcome change from other IPAs.

Might be better reviewed as an APA, though.

Photo of jwc215
3.4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap and in a bottle at a local bar...I asked the bartender to just place the two next to each other without my looking. I tried each and prefered the bottle. I have tried both before - and tried it on tap at other places. I thought it was my imagination, but the bottle is better. The tap isn't BAD, but lacks the fresh crispness that the bottle has.

Photo of tastybeer
3.18/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear tangerine orange body, white little head yet nice layer of retention. Smells sweet and doughy, lightly hopped, with faint grape beneath. Very mild aroma and not that exciting. Taste is also sweetly malted with mild hops and some fruitiness. The dryness stands out. Its not that dry a beer but there's not much going on so the dryness takes over. I'd genreally like more hop flavor throughout. Mouthfeel has a nice crisp carbonation, and otherwise is slick and dry. Flowing drinkability is a plus.

Alright, but not hoppy enough for an IPA to me. Goes down nice and easy though, probably a good end of the night beer. One thing worth mention is that this tastes like is should be more like 4.5-5% rather than 5.9%. A nice suprise.

Photo of harpo111
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance was golden yellow with a nice head...some lacing

smell..grain, hops, buttery

taste nice hops bite with a dry finish....left a nice taste on the palate

mouthfeel....not too thick, smooth and dry..good carbonation

drinkablilty...nice food beer, not overpowering...you can't do a dozen of them..but two would suffice for a meal...
will try this one again.

Photo of Phatz
3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This was not a mind-blowing IPA but it is very approachable, pleasant and drinkable. A worthy transition beer. Not all beers need to have fireworks; this one is certainly worth tasting.

Appearance: Pours completely clear light golden color with a slight amber hue. It had a decedent fizzy white head that fades quickly and moderate lacing. There is fairly active carbonation, rising through the center, throughout the duration of the beer.

Smell: There is a sweet yeasty buttery aroma in the nose. It is a bit muted and hard to find but underneath the grain and fruit there is a bit of floral hops.

Taste: Sweet malt and smooth grainy character up front. It seems to have a bit of a fruit juice attribute; then the gentle English hop character really steps up to bat. The flavor definitely grows on me with each sip building in bitterness left by the last sip. I think one of my favorite things about this beer is the splendid aftertaste that is ever so gently bitter hoppy with a raw sweetness as well. MMM.

Mouthfeel: This is a very tasty beer but as the medium body passes through the middle of my mouth it seems to fall apart into a light body beer. It seems as if there is a hole in the center of the body. It is nice and crisp around the edges and a bit smooth and buttery in the middle.

Drinkability: This is an extremely easy drinking, sessionable beer. What it lacks in glamour it makes up for in drinkability. This is a beer I will take (a case of) to a cookout, this summer.

Hope this is helpful.

Photo of Atlas1
3.4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice peachy-apricot golden color with a respectable head (which lasted about 2.5 minutes before noticeably subsiding). Pleasant enough aroma and taste, but neither were overwhelming (in good or bad ways). Hoppy, but indistinguishable as far as IPAs go. A crisp, refreshing choice for a hot summer day, but not a hop-head's dream come true. Still, there are less exciting IPAs out there, and you could do worse than Harpoon's staple.

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had a pint of this at Grafton Street in Cambridge, Mass. Its a trendy up market bar.

This IPA is a deep gold color, lighter than I expected. A big bubbly foamy head lasts for several minutes and leaves good lace trails. The nose is lightly hoppy and malty. Not very strong, but hops are on top. The taste is bristling with grapefruit and pine. A modest malt backbone provides great balance. The finish reminds me of lemon candy, sweet and citrusy. The mouthfeel is a little thin, with some hop pucker going on.

This is a great IPA. My only criticism is the hop bitterness is a little harsh and lacking in complexity and hop aromas are a little weak. Still, I can see why this is so ubiquitous in Boston, tastey stuff.

Photo of mcallister
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Impressive burnt orange color with an overly frothy half inch head. Smell of fresh hops and sweet pine.

Extremely smooth mouthfeel. Deliciously complex hop and malt balance. Fresh pine tree and cut grass aromas. A typical IPA.

Drinkable as hell. Thank you Nicholson's for the cask.

Photo of Ego
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

havent had this in quite some time so I decided to pick one up...

amber yellow hue, decent head that subsides pretty fast, crisp and clean looking in the glass. move along, nothing to see here

nice subdued hop character, mild aromas of hop florals, the malt comes through mixed in with a nice honey like character. a nice clean smelling straight forward IPA.

taste etc...
like the nose this is your standard IPA, I guess my buds are a bit burnt out on the super duper blow your ass to mars IPAs out now.. for those looking to kick back with something tamer this is solid. It has a nice malt background, has a little bitter kick and finishes very smooth and clean. It isn't over carbonated or offensive in any way shape or form.

you know what.. I might pick this up in the summer if I am not in the mood for a pils. It is easy drinking and just tasty enough for a nice summer afternoon. Of course at 6% maybe I won't suck them down all day but it's a nice change up from a prima pils or sunshine pils...

Photo of Fish113d
3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from a bottle into a pint glass and a bit too chilled in my opinion, it pours a nice crystal clear amber color with a nice frothy tan head. Some slight haze maybe, but solid overall.

Not quite as hoppy on the nose as I would have expected. A bit of caramel malts pop through but some citrus also comes along with it.

Bitter floral hops protrude from the body of this, along with a sweet, but tart grapefruit flavor (maybe a mix of grapefruit and orange peel). As bitter as the hops are, it quickly gives way to the floral and fruit flavors. Some flavor dies toward the end of this one which is a bit disappointing.

Very smooth IPA with a crisp body but smooth delivery. carbonation is managed well, as is the alcohol. NOt the biggest IPA I've ever had either...again, nice but a bit disappointing.

Overall, a nice session brew. This would go nice in a variety case and nice to share or drink a 6-er yourself.

Photo of shamus
3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this while I was in Boston. It had a nice colour and decent head but what I really liked about it was the hops. I wish we could get this in Ottawa. There's just too many lagers and eastern European blonde beers in this town.

It seems like there are a lot of great IPAs and APAs down south.

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

Clear pale gold color with a soft, thin pure white head that drops to a persistent film. Clean floral and sweet citrus aroma with some graininess in back. Dry, leafy/fruity hop taste - more sweet grainy malts in the finish. Soft, medium-light body - lightly bitter.

Refreshing but not all that exciting. A decent, pleasant session beer.

Photo of TastyTaste
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a bottle at RFD in Washington DC. Served in a tapered tumbler, something that I thought wouldn't help this beer breath much. Average clear copper color, small head, clean hops in the nose and flavor. The hops bite is there, but I was not overwhelmed by any one aspect in this beer, but I couldn't say it was bad, it's just not elite. A good regional IPA

Photo of Leon
4.3/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So here's a beer that has been surpassed by many others in the style, in various ways...or has it?

Well, the answer is yes. And the answer is also no.

Appearance? Simply what you'd expect. Golden-orange, fairly clear, tight carbonation.

Smell? Well, this is really nice, actually. Clean as can be, distinctly orange,
extremely fresh.

Taste: It's all about balance, with a slight tilt toward bitterness. Just enough to adhere to the style. Not enough to be dominant. Big enough overall to be an American IPA. Good amount of fruit, awesome hop burps.

Mouthfeel is simply great. Just enough hop oil to keep it interesting. Not so much that you can't down it with ease. Sweet, subtle malt backbone is sublime.

Drinkability is rather ridiculous. I'd like to meet the beer drinker who can't suck one of these down, and I'd like to smack him in the mush.

Good in hot weather, good in cold weather, good at home and the bar. Maybe the ultimate session beer.

And maybe I'm prejudiced, because I can score this wonderful beer for $20.99 a case every day.

Photo of jdmorgan
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this beer on tap and it had a light appearance with a foamy head that quickly dissipated. The aroma really wasn't anything special and was quite light with a slight aroma of hoppy bitterness and a little bit of malt. The taste wasn't overpowering and was crisp with a nice semi-bitter aftertaste. The mouthfeel was about average and this beer wasn't too carbonated but seemed to be just right. I believe the drinkability was excellent as this beer had enough body to it to satisfy me, yet had a clean finish and begged for another round ;-) . Definately worth a try.

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

This was my first real IPA that i ever had a few years ago so it does hold a special place in my heart. However I must say that the taste has been changing and there is no consistency from batch to batch, at least from my tasting. I went to the brewery around Dec and it was the best i ever had it. So around Feb i went back up and got another growler that was keged about 5 days before and it was nowhere near as good. Then I got a 12 pack and once again tasted different. I dont remember if the old Catamount brewery makes any of this or if they just do the 100 barrel but that might explain the change in taste. I would say try this beer to break into drinking other better beers.

Photo of KyleVick4
3.4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Not a bad beer, I dont think it fits in with the IPA category, but Im also used to huge IPAs (read: hophead). great session beer, could easily drink a sixer of these brews and not get tired of them

A: Looks good. Crystal clear, kinda light for an IPA. Not straw but def a shade of yellow. Pours with a thick head that quickly dissipates. Leave good lacing along the glass.

S: A nice smell of hops, a little too citrusy for me, I would have used different hops but its a pretty decent smell

T: Not great for an IPA, but good for a beer in general. I think it would be better as a hoppy pale ale than IPA. Nice hop bitterness that quickly fades away. Not much malt flavors at all.

M: light bodied an maybe a little oily? Small amount of carbonation, but nothing special.

D: this is where this beer shines. As light as the body is and since it lacks heavy hoppyness and high alcohol, I could probally drink these all day if given the chance. A very good choice for a session beer.

Photo of MrSeth
3.25/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours with a light beige head over a golden body.

Smell is very floral, kind of reminds me of an herbal aroma. Ripe orangey notes underscore this really pleasant nose.

Sweet on the palate to start, warms up a bit as it rolls across the tongue becoming more complex and on the verge of being spicey. The flavor accumulates on the back of the tongue like cinnamon and corriander.

A little puckering, but in moderation it feels like a good old IPA. I know from experience that this is definitely not the IPA to over do it with. The hops and spiciness become very monotonous after more than say three bottles or glasses. I could enjoy these once in a while.

Photo of kmpitz2
3.5/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orange color with two fingers of bubbly white head that recedes fairly slowly, with a moderate carbonation from the bottom of the glass. Its a little light colored. The nose is dominated with sweet caramel malt with light piney and citrusy hop. The aromas are a bit light. I would like things to be more forceful. Flavor is full caramel, with a mild citrusy hop that fades to finish a touch toasty and with a mild bitterness. Balance is good and flavors are nice, but there is nothing that really makes this one stand out. The feel is on the light end of moderate with a moderate carbonation. Overall, this one is pretty drinkable. The nose could use a bit more boldness, and I'd like a touch more hop flavor, but this one would be a good session IPA.

Rerview. 22 oz bomber.

The beer pours a weak golden color with a 2-finger head that falls fairly quickly to a finger over the brew. This one is very clear, and there is a modest carbonation working up. The aroma brings a nice caramel malt base with a mild peppery and slightly piny hop. Its not overly complex, but it smells pretty nice. The flavor is right on with the aroma. There is a pretty strong caramel sweetness that is interrupted by a solid pine and lighter citrus hop. The bitterness is a bit rough, but it fades pretty fast into the sweetness. I find the sweetness to be a little over the top and out of balance. Mouthfeel is moderate with a moderate carbonation. Overall, this one is a easy drinking brew that could easily find its way into my fridge every so often. It would be a good change of pace to some of the standard IPAs we have around here. Not bad at all. I'll leave the values as they were before.

Photo of doppelmeup
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a bottle into a pint glass.

Nice looking beer. Half-inch head with moderate lacing.

Pleasant smell. Definite hops, but not overpowering.

Tasted dry as I was expecting. Tasted the hops. Not a lot of malt.

Moderate amount of carbonation. Dry, crisp finish.

Overall, I liked this beer. I'd definitely drink more of these!

Photo of Blakaeris
3.13/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a thick creamy white head and a slightly hazy golden-copper body.

Smell is citrus hoppy and slightly sweet.

Taste is grapefruit with with a slightly oily feel. Robust malt character adds sweetness. Finish is light and crisp. Pleasant but not as bitter as expected.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth.

Overall a decent brew. However, I feel the flavors are not as balanced as they should be. The maltiness isn't bad, but is slightly inconsistent with the rest of the flavors until it warms a bit. A good session beer.

Thanks to Bashiba for sharing this brew.

Photo of danielocean03
3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a coppertoned golden color from a 12oz bottle with a fizzy white one finger head that gave way to moderate white lacing. Aroma is rich of floral and citrus hops, hints of grapefruit also present, light maltiness finishes out the nose. Taste is primarily characterized by bitter floral/grassy hops almost balanced with some caramel malt flavors. Hops do not overpower in this brew, however, they are much stronger smelling than tasting. Mouthfeel is moderate to heavy carbonation, leaves a slight slick oily coating on the mouth and throat. Drinkability is high, lower abv and nice level of complexity coupled with the refreshment this IPA offers will keep me coming back, will purchase again.

Photo of OStrungT
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a clear golden yellow with a thin white head. The head fades quick, leaving very few laces.

This beer has a floral hop aroma. It smells of grapefruit. Cascades? It also has a slightly surprizing malty aroma. It has just a tough of earthy yeast aroma also. This is not your typical IPA aroma.

This beer has a floral hoppy flavor. Not too piney or grassy. It does taste slightly of grapefruit. As with the aroma, I taste a slight malty sweet flavor.

This beer goes down smooth. It is crisp and clean. The flavor in not overbearing. It leaves a slight floral hoppy aftertaste. It is just a little bit undercarbonated, but not so much that it detracts from the flavor.

I think this beer would make a great session beer. It is not high in alcohol, so that wouldnt be a problem. Also, the flavor is not overbearing. I would drink this beer again, if it was available in So Cal.

Photo of ridedammit
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I am fortunate that this is my local "macro" brew. You can get Harpoon in nearly every bar, restaurant, liquor store, and some grocery stores (Wholefoods on River Street has a good beer selection). I am a big fan of IPA's, this one is a nicely drinkable beer. I wish it was a bit more hoppy, but when you get a fresh Harpoon its a real treat. Like Jason I prefer the bottle to the Keg, mainly because it tends to taste fresher, and because I often have it in my fridge as my default beer.

I used to always have Sierra Nevada as my standard offering for friends and visitors, but with a great local brewery like Harpoon it was an easy move to stock the fridge with the IPA.

I realize my scores are kinda odd, with taste being average to good and drinkability being excellent, but the reason is because I know I can always get a six pack and have a few of them and be perfectly happy, especially on a nice warm day outside.

Harpoon IPA from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
82 out of 100 based on 3,533 ratings.