The Ugly American | East End Brewing Company

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The Ugly AmericanThe Ugly American
35 Ratings
The Ugly AmericanThe Ugly American

Brewed by:
East End Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Belgian Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by WVbeergeek on 08-04-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 35 |  Reviews: 34
Reviews by scootny:
Photo of scootny
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Maybe the best bottle I have seen in years, perhaps ever. A golden brew. My first pour is clear but subsequent ones I introduce the clumpy, lumpy yeast. Nice head, persistent retention and nice lacing. Little carbonation it the Delerium glass.

FunkBaby! I love East ends penchant for yeast that has personality. Hoppy and tripel malt. A strong malt that balances the equally strong malt and funk.

Taste is Belgian IPA. Funky tripel backbone undergirds a grapefruit bomb that slowly mellows but never dies. Finish
is mellow with the malt taking the lead and fading into hops and bready malt.

Mouthfeel is on the heavy side of medium and gently carbonated. A touch of cream on the top.

Not one to slam but to savor the unique collision of flavors. Easy to get happy with the glass though.

Big thanks to RblWthACos for this great one! I have one cellaring for a review in a year of two.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of jcdiflorio
4.04/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served into tulip glass from a brown 1qt. flip top cap 2-way split.

Very hazy golden color,mirky looking.The head was a bit flat don't know why? A nice head at the brewery open house.
Aroma was citrusy,spicey,clove aromas, Grapefruit aroma asserted themselves as the beer warmed.Very nice complex aroma.Spent a lot of time with the nose in the glass.
An intense grapefruit taste, a sweet honey carmelly taste,hints of clove,a spicy yeasty taste. A well balanced taste for the blasts of flavor.
Very sweet tastes,like having a sugar coated tounge.
A medium to thick mouthfeel,yet an airy feeling in there,with a nice cloyingness.
Amazingly drinkable for the body of the beer. Could be a dangerous beer in the wrong hands. Smoothness that makes you want to keep on drinking. The Belgium style of the beer a bit overtaken by the hoppiness.
A very unique and interesting beer worth a try.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.27/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big ol' swing top bottle poured into a Mad Elf chalice with my beer drinking buddy jcdiflorio...appears a cloudy sunshine yellow haze with large particles floating all around my glass head was a bit thin on this bottle but at the Open House the head was a rip roarin' thicket of bright white foam that left delicate fine lacing around my glass then. Aromatics in this one have big leafy/grassy, citrus hop loads with mild tart apple and some tropical mixes of fruit mostly pineapple hanging out leaves a really vinous raw hop flavor on my palate but the seet spice base tripel is solid enought to survive the mix. Flavor is up front with the bitterness and huge hop flavor of grassy, floral, and citrus notes with sweet alcoholic fruit notes more of those tropical note really hitting home and mild spicy yeast tones that really flow with the overall mix of the beer...definitely on Ugly American. Mouthfeel is lighter than expected still feeling right around medium in body with carbonation that's a bit lacking quality control is hard when hand filling but that's my only gripe this one coats the palate with hoppy goodness meaning resins and oils plus tripel side of things was sticky with residual sugars...nice. Drinkability, this one is definitely a treat I'm glad I shared it with a good friend and also had my fill at the awesome East End Open House event, enjoy it while it's here.

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Photo of BocktownGal
5/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was fortunate enough to be one of the first folks to try this wonderfully ugly beer. And today being the eve of it's debut, I felt extremely honored. East End doesn't often bottle their beer, so get this one while you can! It is bottled in a one quart easy cap bottle with an extremely Ugly American on the label. One guess who.

This brew is extremely hopped, listed as a double IPA, but watch out for the Trippel! Hoppy, fruity, and believe it or not, smooth!

Today, I am sharing this one with a good friend as Scott always suggests.

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Photo of russpowell
4.29/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this from FreightTrain cheers Jacob! I think this third slam Bush I've drank, funny even to me as a conservative!

Pours a semi-hazed bronze/honey color with a finger of cream colored head. Fairly average head retention & lacing

S: Ripe orchard fruit & dirt, plus leathery funk, fades a bit as it warms

T: Green apple skins, a touch of funk & honey with lemons, white pepper & mushrooms up front. More funk, sourness & apple peels as this warms, plus tartness & a touch of coriander. Finishes dry with semi-boozey pineapple. grapefruit & funkyness. This one bridges a straight tripel & sour one to near perfection IMO, plus some American hops influnce as well

MF: Light/medium bodied with fairly lively carbonation. Carbonation is on point for the style, a bit boozey warmth helps round this out

Drinks fairly true to style, complexity does slow me down a bit

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Photo of akorsak
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 1 L swing-top bottle purchased at Capone's.

A: The ale is a a dark shade of yellow, fairly clear and possessing an enormous head. The head is worth mentioning for its billowy thickness that laces throughout the glass.

S: The aroma is spicy featuring coriander but has no big hop presence.

T: The flavor has the hallmarks of a Belgian IPA, a strong spice profile thrown against a biting pungent hop character. The spice profile is strongest at the front of the sip, showing some coriander pepper, some star anise, some candi sugar sweetness. As the tripel flavor fades away, some bitter hops pop up to counteract the sweetness. The hops are somewhat fleeting but assist the spices in creating a long finish.

M: The mouthfeel is stronger on the tripel aspect, skimping a bit on the bigger hop element. It seems to be better balanced though than some Belgian IPAs, to which I liken this ale.

D: The ale is engaging, big on spicy flavors with a nice bitter finish.

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Photo of wingman14
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow orange with a light white head. Smells mostly sweet with a good deal of hops. Some yeasty notes are present with some fruit notes as well, the alcohol is noticable. The taste is hoppy at first followed by the sweet fruit notes, maybe some orange and banana. The aftertaste is bitter with the hops kicking in again at the end. This is a medium body with a fair amount of carbonation. The taste is great, and the balance of flavor even better. This beer is fantastic. I would definitely get this again, but not something I could drink more than one per sitting, it is just a strong flavor I could see this getting to me. A good beer, with great characteristics. Enjoy.

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Photo of london1o1
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I bought this in a 1 Liter bottle with a resealable Grolsch-style lid at Harris' Grill in Shadyside (Pittsburgh, PA). It was a Wednesday and was the second time that week I had been at the bar asking if they have anything new and interesting. I don't think they like me very much. An off-duty bartender told me the night before that I should try the Ugly American, a Belgian Tripel Double IPA in a 33 oz. bottle. I asked if he'd ever had the Houblon Chouffe and if this was anything like that. He told me he'd never heard of it, but that it sounded similar. After that guy left, I asked one of the working bartenders if I could get an Ugly American only to be told that they've never heard of it and have nothing by that name.

My friend then spent the rest of the time we were out making fun of me for being tricked by the off-duty bartender into ordering the non-existant Ugly American, and I spent the better part of the next 24 hours feeling duped. Fortunately, I returned to the bar the following night, and was equally annoyingly pushy about trying something new and interesting, until someone who knew what they had in stock actually brought me this mythical beer.

And I was not disappointed. Though $25 was a bit pricey, I was quite pleased with the balance this hybridized beer struck between its two styles. Though the label claims this beer is "corrupted . . . with a completely inappropriate amount of US hops," and the hops were certainly evident, through the floral aroma and lingering bitter aftertaste, the sweet taste and nose of the Tripel was not to be outdone.
Though it's clearly not the best of either styles, this beer illustrates what's beautiful about American beer: the willingness to experiment, developing their own styles and putting new twists on other countries' styles, and occasionally doing both in the same beer (although, I suppose those crazy Belgians at Brasserie d'Achouffe did it first).

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Photo of NittanyBeerFan
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at the brewery the weekend of August 22nd. I was forewarned that this triple IPA was no longer an IPA, but a tripel. I was intrigued. Cracked it's swivel-topped bottle for a tasting yesterday...

A: Pours a clear golden color, without any haze at all. Head is minimal. No real lacing to speak of, but hey, its not an IPA anymore...

S: Belgian smelling yeasts and malts are dominant in this beer. They weren't lying when they said there was no more IPA, let alone triple IPA left in this beer. Only some mild fruity notes accompany the malts and yeast.

T: Straight up tripel. It is interesting, because you can tell that this beer is now a shadow of what it was, leaving some clues to its origins as a TIPA behind. There is a touch of floral hops among the yeast and spices that you would expect from a tripel. However, the malty character was somewhat lacking...I can't imagine this beer was meant to be enjoyed this late in its life.

M/D: Smooth, crisp, and satisfying, this probably isn't where you would turn for a tripel, but I would definitely want to try this beer fresh. It was very good at this point, but I am sure it has a whole lot more to offer fresh.

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Photo of weeare138
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jasonm for the trade. Opened up after Kennett during dinner. 1 Liter, swing-top bottle with an illustration resembling the U.S. president. I can't say I appreciate the illustration's tone considering if the same thing were done in other countries, the artist may have taken a permanent vacation b/c people found it offensive. The irony of freedom. No matter what political party you hold your allegience, it's a matter of respecting the position no matter what...but this is all about the beer.

Appears a hazy, light gold with a small white head that lasts. Streaky lacing is left all around the glass.
Smell is of sugary citrus, vanilla, cream, poached pears, and yeasty, sweet bread.
Taste mimics the aromas with a delicious, citrusy, vanilla, lightly tropical flavor that is backed up by the hops. Seems like a complimentary mix.
Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied, well balanced, and smooth going down.
Very good beer. I wish I had more.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.31/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter from the big ass 33.8 oz bottle.

3.0 A: Opaque brownish orange color. One finger of soapy head with less poor retention and some lacing.

4.5 S: Smells more like a farmhouse ale than a tripel. Hay-like funk off the top. Not as hoppy as I would have expected, but there is a healthy hit of citrusy hops. Overripe peaches and spicy, peppery yeast.

4.5 T: Taste is also saison like. Overripe fruit such as peaches, pears, and funk. Belgian spicy yeastiness with pepper and clove. Hops aren't present very much, but there is a healthy bitterness (much more so than a regular tripel). With every additional sip, I switch between thinking this is a tripel or a saison.

3.5 M: Medium body. A little under-carbonation (even for the style) and smooth. Slight alcoholic bite, which complements.

4.5 D: This is a shitty IPA, a good tripel, and a great saison mixed into one. Very drinkable if you're down with funk, which I am.

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Photo of Phatz
4.07/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks a million to yinzer. What a great guy. He brought this beer to me at my office after personally driving it all the way across the state. And a dozen others. I owe you big time friend. Thank you.

This beer, The Ugly American, was shared at our tasting at the Lancaster Home brew club on Wednesday so this review is from notes. I almost wish I had saved it for myself because I really enjoyed it but we got about 15 servings out of this 1 liter swing-top bottle (reviewed as a growler fill). The club members asked me "can you get more of this guys stuff for next time."

The only concern was on the label it says "Double IPA" and then it says - "Trippel Ale" and people kept asking me "is this a double IPA, really?" A few of the guys thought maybe a Belgian IPA indicator on the label would have helped but I completely understand Belgian DIPA Trippel. =) We had a bit of a debate though because someone else said no it is a hoppy Saison. It was compared to beers like Chouffe, Urthel, and Piraat; and not in my mind but also to (Golden Monkey - disagree but...) the point is this beer is clearly unique enough to caused the group of us to question. Even if I say no more you should all go buy two bottles one for now and one for later and see for yourself.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy lemon color decent head despite the small pours and a little lacing in spots.

Smell: Belgian yeast is evident with some zesty spices, lemon and clove, and grassy hops almost pineapple fruity then more grassy hops. It was like being down wind of a hop meadow. It made me think of the outdoors and sunshine on that very cold evening. I am not sure if there is any wheat and bread attribute to the malt (though I believe it was there) or if that was simply a product of the imagery induced in my mid due the extremely appealing aroma.

Taste: This one is hard to place. The flavors follow the nose. A hint of wheat malts provided a light base from which a Saison like spice attribute and a sweet Belgian yeast attribute build upon. Then of course there is the hops. Excessive? No. Not in my bottle. At least not on my palate =). I wonder when this bottle was filled. It had plenty of carbonation so I doubt it faded. I guess it is all relative. I enjoyed it tremendously. There is plenty of lingering bitterness in the dry finish that left me wanting more. Like I said, I wish I hadn't shared any. =) but then the rest of the group wouldn't be asking me to drive out to Pburgh and find more EE stuff for the club. Oh well. Another day…

Mouthfeel: Smooth easy light in the mouth.

Drinkability: Fantastically drinkable. I'll re-comment when I get a full liter to selfishly hoard all alone in a dark corner while no-one can see me or steal a sip ;-)

Hope this is helpful.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to egledhill for the chance to try this brew! noted as a belgian triple IPA. That's quite a combination. How'd it fare?

a - nice golden crystal clear brew with a solid white head
S - belgian esters, hints of spice and earthy tones.
T - belgian yeast notes, citric spicy hops, biscuit, belgian candi sugars and a earthy hop note.
M - medium full bodied, nicely carbonated with a nice residual hop note
D - This one blends in a harmonious and tasty manner. It's a breeze to quaff and a nice brew from first sip to last.

neat beer and I'm glad I had a chance to try this.

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Photo of OneDropSoup
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up from the brewery, a fall 2008 release. The guy behind the taps (I think his name's Alex), told me that holding onto it too long can ruin the effect: the hops fade & it turns into a "regular old" tripel. Duly noted.

I was afraid this was what had happened when I poured it: poured a nice, clear gold with about two fingers of head that dissipated & left a moderate amount of spider-web lacing. Plenty of bubbling action, looking like a champagne. Good stuff.

The smell smacked of tripel -- candy sugar, herbal, lavendar smells, some banana, with hardly any hop aroma. And just a tad funky, rounding it out a bit. I was afraid I'd "over-aged" it, however my wife had a whiff & sensed the hops. Not lost, thankfully; as it warmed up, the hops became more apparent & balanced out that sweet tripel character.

The taste carries everything promised in the smell, plus even more hop presence. At no point would I call this "bitter," but the aftertaste is definitely dominated by a slightly grassy/citric taste, coating the sugars & herbs. That, plus the alcohol is pretty apparent for a relatively low ABV tripel (or IPA, for that matter).

Very smooth mouthfeel, with a foamy/sugary nature. Coats the tongue with the sugars, which contrasts with the bitterness around the edge of the mouth. Not a bad drinker -- I'm looking forward to enjoying another glass this afternoon with some Port Salut. Overall I enjoyed it. Definitely leaning heavily toward the tripel end of things, with just a slightly hoppy tone here & there.

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Photo of bheilman
3.21/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Nice idea! It didn't work out that great this time, but I bet they improve something like that soon. Maybe it should just be called an imperial IPA. It has a fantastic golden hue. Not much head or carbonation. Has the smell of a triple, I'm thinking it must be the smell of triple yeast, because this does not taste like a triple. I have even waited about 3 months and there is still a very significant hop flavor, hardly any sweetness at all. I need that with a triple and it would be great to balance out this hops. The initial taste fades quickly and doesn't leave a very robust evolutive flavor. I can't really get through about 8 oz of this in a sitting; it's too sour. One more thing, I think this beer does taste a lot like other bitters from Belgium. If that's what they were trying to hit, they did a good job.

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Photo of John_M
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a golden amber color with pretty good head retention and lacing. Both on the nose and on the palate, this is one of the more unusual beers I've ever come across. The beer has the spicey honey flavor I associate with a tripel, but there is also some fruity malt and citrus that I typically associate with an IPA or DIPA. Flavors on the palate replicate the nose pretty closely. There is considerable sweetness, but it's kept in check by some considerable hoppy bitterness. The beer reminds me somewhat of the Houblon from La Chouffe, which I assume is what the brewer was going after. However, it's a bit sweeter, maltier and fruitier then the Houblon. Still, there is considerable hoppy bitterness on the palate as well, making for a very complex flavor profile. As the beer warmed up a bit, it smoothed out considerably on the palate. Alcohol is pretty well disguised; it's really the sweet malt more then anything else that detracts somewhat from the drinkability.

An interesting beer with some unusual flavors blended together. Not entirely too sure how well it works in combination, but I enjoyed having the opportunity to try it. Great label.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a. poured from a liter bottle into a chalice. some sediment poured in, bone white soapy head and lace.

s. belgian funky yeast and a strong hop aroma that is pleasantly inviting and seems familiar yet strangely unknown.

t. yeasty notes hint of banana and other ripe fruit. hops are there lending subtle citrus notes and a big time bitterness. malt body is sweet and balances with the grassy hop. alcohol is barely noticable.

m. mouthfeel is a bit slick, smooth and maybe just slightly flat.

d. this is a very drinkable beer and worth the purchase. i'd like to see what happens when the hops die down after a year or two.

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Photo of Alkey
3.71/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle to my glass a clear pale golden color with a large white head that leaves lots of lace around the glass. Smell is faint with some cereal like grains and a mild hops. The taste starts out wet and fairly sweet then turns dry with a bitter floral hop flavor. The feel is light with a touch of carbonation. This brew is pretty easy to drink even with the strong bitterness but I don't see this one being one of my regular go to brews.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy, cloudy golden body with a good white head. Ok retention, but only a little bit of lacing.

Smells very nice. A good dose of bitter, grapefruity hops with some bready yeast and candied sugar aroma.

Up front is a taste of some nice bitter hops, grapefruit and pine. Then the more traditional tripel characteristics come through. Bready yeast and candied sugar. Some fruit notes. Finishes with a little more hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with medium to low carbonation. Just a little oily and resiny.

Pretty drinkable. I've never been a huge fan of hoppy tripels, but I would recommend this one.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Off notes from close to a month ago.

Batch #2

Pours a foggy orange hued gold. Perfume and yeasty funky nose. Lots of citrus and a good amount of it on the flavor as well. Good dough character. A bit boozy though and it's a slight detractor. Feel has a bit of a slimy thick liquid feel to it and the carbonation is slightly lower but good. Overall a very nicely done ale. I'd let it age for a while before consumption though.

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Photo of gford217
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1L bottle, 2008 vintage, courtesy of Beerman6686, poured into a tulip.

Pours a bright, slightly hazy golden orange with a small fluffy white head than stays on as a cap and leaves good lacing.

The aroma is dominated by the fruity sweetness of a typical tripel, some bubblegum with lots of lighter fruits such as apples and pears. There is some tropical fruit hops mixed in but not too overpowering.

The taste starts with a little more hops than the aroma suggests, mostly the tropical mango-type sweetness of American hops. There is plenty of Belgian yeast sweetness in the backbone with pears, apples and other lighter fruits. The finish has a slight bitterness to it from the hops.

The mouthfeel is slick and medium-bodied with less carbonation than I was expecting.

This is a nice hoppy tripel from East End, though the hops have started to give way to the Belgian character in the beer. Still very tasty.

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Photo of wisrarebeer
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought at the brewery in the fall of 2008.

A: pale blond color
S: trad Belgium trippel, amazing since it was from PA!
T: big, bold, a bit of alcohol warming, very tasty, with yeast notes
M: cloying, a bit too lacquerish in the finish
D: too, too drinkable

Well done. Great Belgian character. Hops have subdued and that's fine with me.

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Photo of mikereaser
4.65/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Got this from a trade, just wish i was closer to pittsburgh...

A - pours a hazy orangeish copper color with an inch of foam that slow dissipated leaving a covering of bubbles

S - has a nice citrus aroma with floral hops

T - tastes of citrus, vanilla, grassiness fill the mouth and ends with a nice hoppy punch

M/D - Very smooth drinking. I could drink this often. Very good flavoring all around. A very nice beer that I'm glad I had a chance to try. East End Brewing is doing a hell of a job. Keep it up!

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Photo of corby112
3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes:

pours a dark hazy golden yellowish orange color with burnt orange hues when held to anlight and a frothy 1.5 finger white head that quickly fades into a lasting ring. Sporadic spots of lace left behind.

Crisp golden fruit aroma with hints of apple, pear and grape balanced by earthy, floral hops, pale malt and champagne like yeast. Estery frui notes and sweet alcohol phenol dominate the nose.

Fuller bodied than expected with surprisingly prominent malt backbone and subtle creamy presence. This helps balance out the sweet alcohol flavor and crisp light fruit notes. There is an unexpected earthy hop character that countered the sweet apple, pear and grape notes. Very well balanced with sweet alcohol flavor but not much heat at all. An interesting interpretation of the style.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is from the fall 2008 batch, and as such, the hops have not mellowed much at all. This is a hoppy ass brew.

Looks great, a nice golden color with a crown of head that releases scents of pine and sugar. On an aside, what a great label.

Taste is very similar to the smell, though the hops are definitely the prevailing factor. With that said, it isn't such a crazy amount of hops that it puts this brew off balance, but I wouldn't recommend hop-averse or hop-newbies start here.

Mouthfeel is strong with a medium body and carbonation. The flavor is enhanced rather than overshadowed here.

Drinkability is good but a fair warning: this one will sneak up on you. A very good brew.

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The Ugly American from East End Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.14 out of 5 with 35 ratings