Ard Ri | Upland Brewing Company

Ard RiArd Ri
Liked This Beer
3.7 w/ 142 ratings
Ard RiArd Ri

Brewed by:
Upland Brewing Company
Indiana, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
"High King" is an Imperial Red Ale

Added by Bitterbill on 10-09-2007

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 142 |  Reviews: 77
Photo of shirtless_mike
1/5  rDev -73%

Photo of jheiss
2.5/5  rDev -32.4%

Photo of Cresant
2.73/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured this 12 oz. brown bottle into a Sierra Nevada hops glass. Bottled on "F 09". The body was cloudy and deep golden. The mild head settled to a creamy cap.

Smell was sweet marmalade. Malty. Floral.

Taste reflected the aroma, only there was a strong alcohol presence in the taste. Not as good as I had hoped.

Mouthfeel was full bodied with less than expected carbonation.

 377 characters

Photo of AgentZero
2.78/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Reddish-brown beer that yellows on the edges. Small head with no real retention, sides left clean.

S - Lots of rye, some malts, big caramel. Smells like a big red ale.

T - Bitter with hops, there is a lot of caramel that becomes very sour. This beer gets progressively worse tasting as you go.

M - Medium bodied, lower carbonation.

O - Really hard to drink, didn't like this, taste is strong, but it's not a good thing.

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Photo of Sean9689
2.94/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Jason for this one. 22oz bomber poured into tulip.

A - Pours a copper reddish color, nice off-white head, lots of sticky lacing along the sides of the glass, thick ring around the glass, thin cap on top.

S - Huge malt bomb, lots of sweetness, caramel.

T - A shit-load of malts, huge sweetness, caramel, woody notes, alcohol, tons of rye, harsh overly oaked finish that's not so good.

M - Medium, soft carbonation.

O - Meh, not a good BW or Red Ale. The finish is overly oaky and harsh and the rye is overpowering. Can't say I'd have it again.

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Photo of FalconA
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of cosmonick
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of Klif
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of Mcvs1507
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of thewimperoo
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of Fettpopps
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of phishbfm
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of Wisconsinality
3.03/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into standard pint.

A- Pours a deep amber with a decent amount of haze to it. There is a decent sized head, about two finger's. The head sticks around for a while and leaves some good lacing on the side of the glass.

S- The sweet malt dominates the nose. There is a little bit of hop presence buried in there as well. A little bit of alcohol peaks out at the end.

T- The malt again, dominates the taste. There is a little sweetness to it as well. There is a better hop presence than in the nose. A slight bitterness and not much else.

M- Medium bodied with pillowy carbonation. There is a slight dryness on the tail end.

O- Not a bad beer but nothing that really sticks out about it. It says Imperial Red on the bottle which I get but it says American Barleywine on here which I can also see. Hops are a little lacking though.

 845 characters

Photo of WhiteRiverSuds
3.13/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a reddish/copper color. There was very little head even w/ an aggressive pour. Minimal lacing. Faint smells of caramel, toffee, malt & alcohol warmth. The taste is a malt and candy sweetness that quickly turns to a persistent and oily bitterness. The mouthfeel is slick with light carbonation. I thought this beer was fairly smooth, but a bit thin for me. Based on reviews from previous years/batches, I'd like to taste a different batch to compare with.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.23/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a deep clear ruby, with a finger of rich and creamy off-white head. This retains with a frothy ½ finger which leaves back a robust cascade of sticky lacing. The aroma smells dark and sticky in the nose, with roast, caramel, and green citrus all mixed in while ripe tropical notes and herbal character sits along the back. Some pine and leafy accents hang on the edges.

The taste is a sticky mix of toffee and tropical fruit, punctuated by a green citric bitterness that then segues into more of a roasty backend. The finish is dry and resinous with some lingering bitter pith and then a touch of sticky sweetness and char on the very end. The mouthfeel is medium to fuller bodied with some sharpness on the tongue but does get a bit more slick and creamy as this spreads out in the mouth. This does have some heady warmth to it that really sticks those hops to the palate and is overall getting a wee bit distracting at times.

This really came off as more of an Imperial Red Ale than a Barleywine and while I did appreciate the overall brashness of this in spots, the strong flavors of alcohol, bitterness, and roast just clashed a bit too much with each other to really keep this approachable. This was decent but I’ve seen the style done much better before.

 1,307 characters

Photo of iRun2Beer
3.24/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Photo of liamt07
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle shared by Sammy, 22oz bottle into a tulip. Bottled February 2011.

Poured a reddish brown, some orange shades around the edges. Cream coloured head, thing film of retention and some spotty lace. Nose has some very sweet malts, bread, berry fruits and toffee. Taste is quite fruit-y (as per its nose), more berries, sweet malt and toffee notes. Dry breadiness, with a solid bitterness in the finish. Dry, sweet (almost cloyingly so), with a medium body and carbonation. Fairly plain and uninteresting for the better part. Surprised to see this listed as an American Barleywine, initially took this to be an Imperial Irish/American Red of sorts.

 651 characters

Photo of jhillwastaken
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of MordorMongo
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of amcaleh
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of macrosmatic
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to Matt for sending this one down! Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a Russian River pint glass.

A: Hazy copper, with a finger of off-white head and relatively low visible carbonation.

S: Sweet toasted malts and light pine hops - but there's minimal aroma overall.

T: Boozy hit on the first sip. There's a lot of flavorless bitterness here with the toasted rich malts. Finishes with a moderate bitterness from the hops. This doesn't have any complex flavors.

M: A nice roundness and heft to the body. Average levels of carbonation, and the alcohol is noticeable.

O: I'm not impressed with this one. Definitely needs some more dry-hopping, which would give the beer a lot more depth of flavor, as well as aroma. There's nothing terribly off about it, but it's not something I'd be in a hurry to repeat.

 824 characters

Photo of jrallen34
3.26/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle poured in my Narke glass... The body is a dark but bright copper. The head is fantastic, a bright off white that forms a great cap, and outstanding lacing that hands a full half finger above the base... A simple aroma, mostly malty with a hint of spice. Whopper malt, and toffee. I'm intrigued to see where this goes... The taste is a rye bomb, just dominating and makes its undrinkable, especially on the finish. A nice sweet malt note on the front is nice, but then its all downhill. Was this aged in an old oak tree?

I wouldn't have again.

 550 characters

Photo of Mistofminn
3.29/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this bottle as an extra from heliosphann. Thanks Scott!

Pours a beautiful red color with a nice tan one finger head with decent retention. Leaves sheets of lacing all over. Slow and laboring carbonation. I really like the color, hence the score.

The nose on this is the most defined "biscuity" character I've ever smelled. It literally smells like the Dough Boy just cooked up some rolls, blended them up and threw them in my beer. Other than the biscuityness, there is a caramel malt backbone, light hops and bready characters.

The taste is very very malty. A nice fruity character arises that I wasn't expecting, followed by a defined breadyness. A touch of alcohol in the end, followed by a lingering bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, definitely not what I was expecting. I was expecting a bite from hops, a more sharp mouthfeel, instead I got a smooth and creamy, easy drinking brew.

Overall, not quite sure about this one. I had no problem finishing my 12 oz, but I just wasn't feeling it. Maybe this isn't the freshest, and maybe this is supposed to be hopped up, but I gotta call it like it is. This is a malt bomb, and I'm not a fan of malt bombs in Red Ales.

Not a bad beer, just not something I would have again. Thanks Scott for the chance!

 1,278 characters

Photo of salvo
3.35/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a tulip off the tap at Black Sparrow on St. Patrick's Day.

Ard Ri hoppy red ale is rich and tart with just enough sweetness to hold the bitter herbal hops upright. Smells beautifully of ripe red rye malt with a hint of sugary clover honey. That honey is way in the background and subordinated to the hard rye and medicinal hops. Taste is bitter bitter bitter and keeps me upright with it's astringency and bitterness. Finishes long and clean like a strait-razor.

This is by far the best Upland offering I have tasted. I generally appreciate Upland, I'm grateful it exists, and I'm happy it has its fans. But I rarely enjoy and really never crave Upland's recipes the way I think about and long for Three Floyds, and Sun King, and (I'm finding, more and more, the new local) People's. Just doesn't compare to Mad River's Imperial Red.

 841 characters

Photo of tsauce2
3.37/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

P: 22 fl oz bottle in to an imperial pint

A: SRM is amber/brick red. Hazy. Head is off white, 1 in., fluffy, dissipates to line rim of glass. Light lacing.

S: Malt and carmel notes come through, followed by hops.

T: Initially malty, but followed by heavy hop notes and a touch of sweetness. Bitter aftertaste. The ABV is very well hidden.

M: Maltiness gives a very appealing mf at first, but hops seem to counter rather than compliment. Bitterness of aftertaste sticks to the sides and back of palate.

O: A hopped up imperial version of a traditional red ale. The maltiness was spot on, but the hops detracted from the overall taste instead of complimenting this beer. Upland did a fantastic job of making this beer 9.5% without being boozy.

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Ard Ri from Upland Brewing Company
Beer rating: 54.2% out of 100 with 142 ratings
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