Harpoon IPA - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon IPAHarpoon IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

1,195 Reviews
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,195
Hads: 3,781
rAvg: 3.64
pDev: 12.36%
Wants: 70
Gots: 644 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-01-2000

Harpoon IPA is an interpretation of the classic English style using hops and malt grown in the United States.

42 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Harpoon IPA Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,195 | Hads: 3,781
Photo of GuinnessSmurf
3.33/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Typical color for an IPA. Nothing real 'wow'-ing. The nose...I expected it to be clean, but not this clean. Almost odorless.

The flavor of this beer was very smooth flavored IPA - strangely smooth. The bitters were there -but there was no bite!!! IPAs should bite you... especially when the waitress recommends it to you when they are out of Dogfish Head 90 min IPAs! (371 characters)

Photo of fdrich29
4.3/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This has been a staple of mine for a few years now. Bottle has the distictive Harpoon logo that looks like it a tatoo youre great uncle had from his navy days.

Amber in appearance with a sweet, hoppy taste and smooth and pleasant mouthfeel makes for its high drinkability.

Easily accessable in the New England area and beyond and reasonalbly priced for such a well crafted beer. Tastes best out of a growler fresh from the brewery in Boston, Massachusetts. (463 characters)

Photo of Southernbrew
4.12/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice copper color, very nice head that lasts a while.

Nice citrusy hops smell, very full aroma, smells just like an IPA should. Some floral notes as well.

Medium mouthfeel, very hoppy, slight bitterness. Strong citrus notes and a slight bitter-sweetness in the finish, as well as a bit of dryness.

Definitely a nice brew and a quality IPA. (348 characters)

Photo of rajendra82
3.23/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pale clear golden color with off white head that crowned to about two inches tall. Floral hop aroma is gentle yet strong. Delicate pine resin hoppyness with an assertive spicy bitterness. Hints of butterscotch and grapefruit on the palette back the hops up nicely. Medium to thin creamy body. Very drinkable. Don’t worry about what you might have read about this beer on some other site, this is a pretty good IPA. (415 characters)

Photo of Gasp100
3.97/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a very solid and enjoyable IPA. Poured a cloudy orange with a wispy off white head -- Nice lacing sticking to the side of the glass. The smell was of Hops and citrus fruit. The taste was lighter than I expected and not too bitter but the fruit taste was very well balanced and not as obtrusive as some other IPA's I've had. There was not much of a malt backbone, but overall I welcomed the lighter side of this IPA. Very enjoyable, spring time drink with a decent ABV and very drinkable. I believe I can find this brew in most stores on the East Coast so this will be added to the list as a nice, quick "on the road" brew. (631 characters)

Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a very nice IPA that looks good and tastes good as well. The body is a very clear dark golden color and the head is just one shade or so off-white. The head comes up about 3 fingers and dissipates, but slowly; lace deposits are fairly nice.

The aroma initially impressed me of malt but then the hops kicked and it was clear where we were heading. The hops flavor was notable because of the nice bittering sense thta seemed very well balanced against the malt. This manifested itself as a lightly fruity flavor and was nicely contained by the malting. The finish is more than a little bitter.

The feel was very good with nice clean crispness in the ending. Overall this is a nicely drinkable American-style IPA. (724 characters)

Photo of GeoffFromSJ
4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at Cheers the Bar of all places. (I was a tourist, I know.) This beer had a minimal head, but it had a nice color and a good aroma.

The big plus of the beer is its really good malt profile. This made this an exceptional beer. I've purposely not read the other reviews, and I assume most will say not enough hops. This is hoppy. But definitely could use more hops as an IPA. Very good though. You can find this all around town, which is a nice thing to say about Boston. (490 characters)

Photo of mac56
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: honey color, a good sized head that took a long time to fall, tight bubbles and very little lace.

Smell: slightly floral, slightly spicy. My wife said "marigolds".

Taste: very nice balance of hop and malt. Aftertaste can only be described as crisp and dry.

Mouthfeel: the hop bitterness hit me in the back of the mouth, then faded away ever so slowly to be replaced with a malty smoothness.

Drinkability: quite so. Finished one and immediately wanted another.

Overall: a very good beer of the style. I think this is what I expected the Sweetwater IPA to be like when I reviewed it last week. I will definitely drink this again. (654 characters)

Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.73/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured crystal clear golden. The head was large and lasting. It took forever to fall.

The aroma when first opened was earthy and floral. After a few minutes and the head dying down, the aroma is slightly malty and citrusy but not overpoweringly so.

The flavor is crisp and not very bitter. The malt and hops are very well balanced, but only a slight hint of bitterness shines through. The flavors are not overpowering.

The finish is dry and finally goes to some subtle bitterness. The body is medium and quite drinkable.



Haven't had a Harpoon in quite some time. This one was a 12 ounce bottle with markings on the neck that said XX/17/03. The XX was unreadable.

The beer could be more bitter and have a more pronounced hop character. (762 characters)

Photo of ADR
3.65/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear dark gold color, a little lighter than many IPAs. Head is steamed milk frothy, over 1/4 of an inch with lasting properties. Laces in big dripping blobs. Nice grapefruit pith aroma, not overdone but solid for style. Body is slightly thinnish, malt has a hard time generating a presence before a slightly oily bittering kicks in. Hops start well, but not as big as many, and are helped by the aroma qualities. The finishing aspects are slightly metallic and the mouthfeel turns a little watery at the same time. Not bad, at least its not one of those hop cartoons IPA that are flooding the market. Malt and finish could be better. Thanks to Liza P. and her dad for getting it, and Ken K. for bringing it back. (713 characters)

Photo of CBFanWish
3.47/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 12 ounce bottle from Beers of the World.
Straw color with medium head. The basic standard, really.
The smell was of floral hops. Definate IPA. Caramel also in there
The taste was hoppy, yet well balanced with caramel malt. Not bad, but not great. There are much better IPA's out there. It was smooth and I will drink it again. I just liked it better on tap. (363 characters)

Photo of PhantomVodoo
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brownish golden in color with an off-white head that left lace.
Big citrusy, floral hop aroma. Malt buried under the hops.

Taste shows a solid spicy, citrusy, floral hop flavor. Toasty malt falls a bit short of balancing this one. Solid hop bitterness lingers just a bit at finish.

Good mouthfeel and drinkability.

Overall, this is a good IPA with plenty of hop flavor. (379 characters)

Photo of Dogbrick
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On draught at Lazy Chameleon. Pours a clear amber-orange color with a thinwhite head. Decent lacing as well. The aroma is a really pleasant concoction of hops and fruit. Medium-bodied, and the flavor is surprisingly subdued given the strong aroma. There is a fair amount of malt in the flavor as well. The finish is fairly clean and bitter. Maybe it is the hop-heavy IPAs like Ruination, Buckeye '76 et al that are to blame but I like a higher level of hops than this beer offers, both in the flavor and in the finish. A decent beer nonetheless. (545 characters)

Photo of merlin48
4.32/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

This was from a 12 bottle sampler box that arrived at Lexington, Kentucky's Liquor Barn stores a couple of weeks ago, so it should be reasonably fresh. Pours out a medium gold, with an average head and moderate lacing. Floral hop aroma is pleasant, but doesn't knock you back like many American IPAs. Mouthfeel is just about right, medium carbonation and dry hops balanced perfectly with the malt. Taste is basically the same, impressive balance with notes of pink grapefruit and lemon. This is not an exciting or "big" IPA, but it is definitely a very well crafted, if toned down, American style pale ale. I'm impressed with its overall likeabilty. (649 characters)

Photo of goz
4.2/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark golden/light amber, with a large cloudy white head, lacing is superb in it's sheeting and strength. Aroma is mostly strong floral hops, with a bit of caramel malt holding it together. Flavor is slightly malty up front, with a big juicy hop finish that dominates the palate and lasts for a while. Medium bodied, extremely drinkable. (344 characters)

Photo of mschofield
3.82/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber with a thin white head. Laces passably with thin rings.
Floral and citrus aroma - not very strong.
Citrus flavor, a little lemon, and when it warms just a tiny bit of pine.
Nicely balanced slightly hoppy pale ale. It's a small one, but good - doesn't compare to the big boys like Stone or DogFishhead, but then it really isn't meant to.

Seems to have gotten a little weaker over the past couple of years. More of a pale ale than an IPA now. It also hasn't ever been as good on tap as in the bottle. I used to buy the bottles quite often, I'd go more with Stone or HopDevil now. (589 characters)

Photo of barleypop
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was lucky enough to try this on tap at Buckowski's while in town for the Stammtisch festival. It poured a burnt, golden colour. Not a whole lot of carbonation to be had. The tiny head left its mark down the glass as it was devoured. Understated floral scents on the nose. The initial port like sweetness mellowed as the hops gently let themselves be known. I feel this ale more closely resembles a British IPA than a typical american IPA. Not spectacular, but very drinkable. Yummy. (484 characters)

Photo of ZAP
4.22/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Update...frsh bottle bottled about a month ago....similar thoughts...very fresh hop flavors...leafy...juicy...not real bitter...great tobacco/canibus like nose...very balanced and drinkable....I could drink this all day every day....almost has some celebration Ale hop flavors and feel to it....thanks a bunch to Johnny P for the freshie....
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2-25-03
I decided to pour this along side a Tyranenna IPA...it pales in comparison in regards to hops on the nose and the buds...the Tyranena rocks...huge citrus invade at first pour...this one is different but good in it's own way...the hops and malt are very balanced...almost even...it is highly drinkable..I see the hopping as more of a sweter, floral style than a tight citrus flavor...I like it...Good in a lot of ways and I like the sweeter mouthfeel as a changeup IPA...Almost more of an APA like Summit Extra Pale Ale rather than a full fledged IPA.... (910 characters)

Photo of waughbrew
3.77/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This is a beer for long sessions. Very yellow in color compared to most IPAs. Aroma is big on the floral and citrus character, my guess is from a healthy dry-hopping. Taste is kind of like budweiser with a ton of cascades added to it. (I mean that in a good way) It tastes well-made with a beatiful balance to it that fades evenly. The only real malt character to speak of is a little breadiness and graininess. The feel is a little thin and fizzy. I felt like I could have drank about ten of these in a row. Pleasing in flavor yet light and drinkable. I have had this beer on tap and it is not nearly as good as the bottled version. I was pleasantly surprised, and it just may become a regular bottled beer for me. (715 characters)

Photo of Running4beer
3.55/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured out a copper color with a medium white head that lingers around for quite a bit. Aroma was straight up hops although not powerful but noticeable. Taste was hoppy with a malt backround fairly balanced out. This was rather smooth and pretty good. (251 characters)

Photo of beergeek279
3.68/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in the 12 oz. bottle. The color is copper, with a bit of head Smell is a very light hop. The taste is mostly of hops, though not nearly as much so as other IPAs, more like a pale ale, and it has a very nice malt base so at least it's more or less balanced. Mouthfeel is smooth. As for drinkability, I could have a few drinks.

This seems to be more of a pale ale than an IPA. Still, not a bad beer. I could definitely have a few more of these in the future. (467 characters)

Photo of nixhecks
4.07/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright golden color, a little lighter than other IPAs I have tried - this looks almost like a pilsner. The head was medium sized with medium retention, wilted down to a thin film that stayed for the remainder of the glass. The aroma is very good, a full, spicy, floral hop bouquet, with lemony-citrus note. The taste is also very good. Started off mellow and sweet and blended into a crisp, citric hoppiness that left me smacking my lips. Mouthfeel was full bodied, smooth and semi-dry. Good all-round IPA. (514 characters)

Photo of jermar
3.16/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I have to think those of you who don't think this is anything special aren't getting it fresh! So much of the enjoyment of this beer is from the incredibly floral hops matched well with a toasted maltiness/alcohol blend. My only complaint is that this IPA seems to get me hung over more than others, thus the lower drinkability rating. And, for some reason, this beer makes me sneeze!

-- on re-review, it seems that Harpoon has dumbed this down for the masses, with a much more watery taste and diminished hoppiness. Not the classic it once was. (548 characters)

Photo of mzwolinski
3.07/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

"Surprisingly Weak" For some reason, I expected good things of Harpoon. Maybe it's just my West Coast enchantment will all things Eastern. But this beer was just "blah." Poured clear gold in color with rather little carbonation and not much of a head to speak of at all. Aroma contained very little malt and only a muted leafy/grapefruity hop boquet. This grapefruit taste comes off in the flavor as something more like grapejuice -- sweet without any significant hop bite. Not much of a malt body, either. It's drinkable, but so is water. (539 characters)

Photo of pezoids
4.03/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a golden yellow with a dense and cream-like head. Buttery and crisp is an accurate way to describe this beer. Dry and oily with a slight oily aftertaste. Alcohol presence with a bit of citrus tang. Well rounded body and full of flavor. Nice IPA. (252 characters)

Harpoon IPA from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
82 out of 100 based on 1,195 ratings.