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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #39 - Vermont Spruce Tip - Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Not Rated.
Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #39 - Vermont Spruce TipHarpoon 100 Barrel Series #39 - Vermont Spruce Tip

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

103 Ratings
THE BROS
81
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 103
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 14.2%
Wants: 4
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

This hearty ale is a showcase for a traditional yet seldom used brewing ingredient: spruce tips. Harvested at their tender, ripe, bright green peak in Downer State Forest, Vermont, these spruce tips impart citrus, pine, spice, herbal and earthy notes. A host of malts, a hint of roasted barley and generous use of Chinook hops complement the unique spruce flavor.

We’d like to thank the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation and all of the many great volunteers that helped us with this unusual harvest.

38 IBU

(Beer added by: johnnnniee on 12-02-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #39 - Vermont Spruce Tip Alström Bros
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Ratings: 103 | Reviews: 43 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear amber in color and has a slight amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that died down and left a thin ring of bubbles on the surface around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of pine resin in the nose.
T: The overall taste has malty flavors with hints of lemon citrus and pine resin from the hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate to high amount of carbonation.
O: Nothing really stands out about this beer as being interesting but it is quite easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2012 15:35:27 | More by metter98
Photo of kjkinsey
kjkinsey

Texas

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

12-22-2011 04:52:53 | More by kjkinsey
Photo of Texasfan549
Texasfan549

Texas

4/5  rDev +13.6%

01-29-2012 10:39:49 | More by Texasfan549
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 12/11/2011 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a medium brown color with a short dense off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick on the glass.

S: The aroma is faint but contains maple, spices, caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste has a burst of spices and fruity sweetness up front followed by flavors of maple and caramel. The malt character is hearty and the hops presence is mild but complementary bringing a little bit of balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, decent kick, decent representation of style, it’s something a bit different but not a beer I would want to drink on a regular basis.

Serving type: on-tap

12-16-2011 02:34:58 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz brown bomber w/ a batch # on the label.

LOOK: Head is not shy at all and reaches three fingers high, clear amber color.

SMELL: Toasted bread, mild spruce, caramel, herbal hop, floral and fruity yeast, semi-clean

TASTE: Sweet, modest spruce, mild hop bitterness, herbal, earthy, caramel, estery, ripe pears, hint of hop oil, drying semi-bitter finish

Expected a bit more spruce on the palate or perhaps this beer could have been smaller. Still well balanced and a good quaff.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2012 03:33:08 | More by Jason
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fizzy 1/4 head fades quickly, crystal clear orange honey red color.

Nose is sweet malts, maple, candy syrup, juicy reddish malts, caramel, etc. hint of pine sap and resin.

Taste sweet with syrupy malts, reddish malts, caramel, candy syrup, maple, light gritty biscuit like. Then light pine sap and resin, and hops, earthy herbal hops with a light phenolic herbal taste and decent bitterness. Finish is more maple candy, sweet, not as sticky as I thought, and on the back of the tongue a pine taste that is like chewing on a fir tree and earthy dirt taste.

mouth is med bodied, lighter but dec carb.

Overall meh, not bad but not great, the spruce isn't bad at first but gets weird, and plenty of sweet flavors, although the malts add a nice heavy beer feel for winter.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2012 13:01:59 | More by jlindros
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautifully clear, deep amber color. Decent head that settles to a thin layer of bubbles. Leaves good ring lace.

Smells like a Scotch Ale with a very light pine touch--mostly light crystal malt. Relatively neutral.

This is a complex beer. It is sweet, yet dry (in the swallow). The evergreen comes through, but Ina subtle way. There's enough hop to provide bitterness, but is otherwise nondescript. Full bodied with a decent dose of carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2011 20:18:44 | More by smcolw
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber with best before dating(3-15-12)

Pours clear, light amber, with a nice dark orange hue, minor light tan head, fine bubble sheen and some delicate fine lace left on the glass.

Fresh herbs and a just a hint of pine/spruce in the nose.

Fresh and clean tasting, more light spruce, I also get some juniper, perhaps anise, and caramel maltings, all with some hops in the rear end to dry a chunk of the sweatness out. Pretty good stuff, one of my better experiences with this long running series of brews

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2011 02:22:22 | More by Billolick
Photo of InspectorBob
InspectorBob

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

03-16-2014 12:14:03 | More by InspectorBob
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear amber in color with some very light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall creamy light beige head that reduces to a skin with a small thin patch and a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate lacing is observe.d

S: Overall the aroma is very mild and a little more subtle than I expected. Light aromas of caramel and spruce.

T: This beer has a fairly strong malt body that contributes some caramel sweetness upfront. That is fairly quickly followed by some very light lemon citrus and some spruce. The beer finishes with a slight amount of hop bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation.

O: Easy enough to drink and an interesting brew... Not sure that I would want to drink this as my session beer but on the other hand the beer goes down quite easily. I do not think I will be likely to get this one again but not sorry to have tried it. I was expecting and hoping for a more pronounced spruce in both the taste and the smell and that aspect was slightly disappointing (though I can see how a little too much could have made this taste like a Christmas tree).

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2012 20:25:59 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of Kelp
Kelp

New Hampshire

3.25/5  rDev -7.7%

04-27-2013 09:47:17 | More by Kelp
Photo of sendbeer
sendbeer

Georgia

2.75/5  rDev -21.9%

11-03-2012 14:06:54 | More by sendbeer
Photo of THECPJ
THECPJ

Delaware

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

02-09-2012 19:24:32 | More by THECPJ
Photo of johnnnniee
johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium copper color with a huge bubbly white head that sticks around forever as well as to the glass. Smells of caramel and bready malt with a fair amount of non descript fruitiness. Slightly earthy hop aroma mixed with a bit of herbal and medicinal aromas. Really not what I was expecting when I cracked this one open. Taste is caramel and toffee malt sweetness balanced with an earthy herbal almost licorice flavor. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet slick mouthfeel. Decent brew, but not really what I expected. The spruce is there but its not overpowering and comes across as more of an herbal nuance in this brew. I enjoyed it enough that I would drink this again if I saw it on tap somewhere.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2011 00:57:47 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of avalon07
avalon07

South Carolina

4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a clear texture. There was an inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: Smelled of hops, malt, and a lot of pine.

T: Tasted predominantly of pine, with a lot of malt, caramel, and some hops in the finish. An interesting flavor that's pretty tasty, but definitely hard to pin down.

M: A fair amount of carbonation with a somewhat bitter finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This is one of those beers that's kind of familiar, but also kind of an oddball. Still, worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2011 23:24:08 | More by avalon07
Photo of puboflyons
puboflyons

New Hampshire

4.03/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a bottle with an expiration date of 03/15/2012. Sampled on December 29, 2012. It begins with an attractive darker-amber pour with a short-lived hea that disappears quickly. The aromas are finely balanced between sweet malts and earthy, piney hops, which makes sense considering how it was brewed. The body is medium to bold. The taste comes off stronger than the aroma with the same characteristics of pine tree, earth, and sweet malts with a vaguely dry finish. At the same time the piney flavor is something a little different and difficult to describe. Overall likeable.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2011 23:31:36 | More by puboflyons
Photo of Lare453
Lare453

Florida

3/5  rDev -14.8%

03-24-2013 18:32:45 | More by Lare453
Photo of Gmann
Gmann

New York

3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Pony Bar in NY.

Pours a clear golden brown color with a tight cream colored head that left a wall of lacing.

The aroma was weak and neutral. Some sweet malt with a subtle earthy spice. Nothing really stood out.

The taste was quite bready with some tea like malts. There was some brown sugar sweetness with a light spruce flavor. The spruce was not bitter at all. Some fruit punch berry sweetness as well.

The feel was smooth and balanced. The beer had a moderate body with light carbonation, slightly dry in the finish.

Not as sprucey as I thought. I thought there was going to be a lot of spruce like hop notes but that wasn't the case. It is tastey and very balanced.

Serving type: on-tap

12-18-2011 22:00:26 | More by Gmann
Photo of tigg924
tigg924

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

Appearance: 1/4 inch head that dissipates quickly, red-brown in color, clear, high carbonation

Smell: chocolate and light spruce—although the spruce becomes more fragrant as the beer warms

Taste: chocolate is the dominant flavor with spruce that becomes more dominant as the beer warms, light hops and other woodsy flavors.

Mouthfeel: sweet with a bitter spike at the end, moderate carbonation, medium-light bodied

Overall: This is a solid beer in the upper middle of the pack of the Harpoon 100 barrel series that I have tried. It has elements of a sahti in there. I do appreciate the woodsy element, but it is not as dominant as I would have liked. I would get this probably once a year in bomber format if it became a regular offering. A solid beer worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2011 15:51:01 | More by tigg924
Photo of jaxon53
jaxon53

Connecticut

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

06-25-2013 22:56:39 | More by jaxon53
Photo of DrinkSlurm
DrinkSlurm

Connecticut

3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into tulip. As all #39 - brewed on 11/3/11. Drank on 1/13/12.
Pours an amber clear, almost like a maple syrup. Nicely carbonated pour, but head disappears quick. Leaves behind some ok lacing.
Aroma is of sweet malts; almost quad like? but you smell a bit of hops, alcohol, and yes, pine.
Taste is very similar to the smell...sweet malts, again almost quad-like, but a bit more hops than I thought. The spruce is present, along with alcohol, in the aftertaste.
This is a really great brew...drinkable, unique, and just awesome that the spruce was harvested in Vermont, by volunteers. Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2012 00:39:34 | More by DrinkSlurm
Photo of donkeyrunner
donkeyrunner

Massachusetts

3.1/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pristinely clear copper colored beer with a quick to fade head. Smells like sweet malt, pine resin and log cabin.

Tastes bready, malty sweet and herbal. Lil' bit fruity. There's an odd herbally harumph in there which I'm guessing is spruce residue - now I know what spruce tips taste like.

My least favorite 100 barrel since the oyster stout.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2011 11:39:53 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of OtherShoe2
OtherShoe2

Massachusetts

3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours bright clear medium amber with a slight cream colored head. some nice foam clinging to the side of the glass.

Light toasted malt, a little caramel, maybe a little herb.

Uh...how does this differ from their pale ale? Moderate toasted malt up front, leading to a a bitter/and slightly tart palate clear -- bitterness has an herbal edge. Decent maltiness in the finish. Looking for something unique here- not getting it. Very decent ale, but could be any common pale ale.

Seems a bit thinner than I'd like.

Not horrible, but a very common, average brew. A little acidic and bitter in the end makes this different, but barely. Kinda disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2012 17:18:08 | More by OtherShoe2
Photo of Davepoolesque
Davepoolesque

Massachusetts

3.25/5  rDev -7.7%

08-25-2012 20:03:38 | More by Davepoolesque
Photo of Gambrinus1184
Gambrinus1184

Connecticut

3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bomber into a NOLA Brewing pint glass.

A: Medium, copper amber color with a thick, foamy head of off-white foam which causes a small bit of lacing to build up around the edge of the glass.

S: Semi-roasted caramel malt sweetness couples with a spicy, fruity ale yeast complicated by a pine and woody herbal hop resin.

T: Sweet doses of fruity, caramel malts up front which lend a bit of body and alcohol to the flavor. Up next is the spicy hop bitterness brought upon by the piney, spicy addition of spruce tips. The finish is a bit viscous with a touch of booziness but also a hint of piney hop goodness thanks to the Chinook additions.

M: Full-bodied ale with some spicy, bitter notes imparted by spruce tips and dry, Chinook hops. Pretty satisfying and easy to drink.

O: This 7% ABV essentially "American Strong Ale" for all intents and purposes, was not half bad. It has some balance and identity issues, but on the whole, I liked the spicy, floral, fruity and piney effect brought on by the Chinook hops, yeast strain and craftsmanship. Not the best in the series but certainly a unique and tasty one.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2012 03:59:07 | More by Gambrinus1184
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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #39 - Vermont Spruce Tip from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
80 out of 100 based on 103 ratings.