Sneaky Pete Imperial IPA | Laughing Dog Brewing

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185 Reviews
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Sneaky Pete Imperial IPASneaky Pete Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
Laughing Dog Brewing
Idaho, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by CampusCrew on 03-28-2011

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Reviews: 185 | Ratings: 720
Photo of AleWynch
2.28/5  rDev -40.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A: It poured a hazy deep amber...1/2 finger head

S: Boozy, butterscotch, weak hops - uninteresting - and oddly day-old lawn-mower bag?

T: Just not doing it. Bitterness yes, but very direct and one-dimensional. Unbalanced, really lacks finesse of any kind. In your face, but not in a good way here.

M: Medium. Little heavy for my liking - gets cloying with the sweetness.

O: Disappointed. Won't be returning to this one.

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Photo of womencantsail
2.44/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottle shared by Bobby.

A: The beer pours a dark amber color with a finger of off-white head.

S: Horrible, horrible nose. Butter and booze are prominent and there is a ton of sweetness in the form of caramel, toffee, and brown sugar. Some piney hops and a bit of an herbal note to it as well.

T: The flavor starts off with a moderate bitterness from the piney hops and some citrus peel. But, there is a lot of butter and sweet caramel and toffee.

M: Medium to full in body with a medium carbonation.

O: Just too buttery and sweet...blech.

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Photo of harrymel
2.44/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottled two days ago.

Cherry red ale with a finger of fleeting off-white foam. Smells astringent and sharp with an acetone, boozy, sweet and chemical nose. Not getting the hops I expect from Laughing Dog.

Taste is sweet and fruity/estery. Has a slight flavor similar to the nasty flavor I get from DFH hi gravity beers - sour artificial grape and paint thinner. Although more subtle and more tolerable in this beer than in the DFH. Thin with moderate carb.

I'm not satisfied with this one. Glad most of it gets shipped out of the area.

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Photo of AustenFB
2.5/5  rDev -34.6%

After trying this I think I know why the dog is laughing. Another sucker, ha ha. On a more positive note, it seems like it has potential, meaning a fair starting base on which to build. It just hasn't been tweaked nearly enough. They gave up too soon.
It does have a distinct funkiness that's reminiscent of Ska Decadent Imperial IPA. However, if that's what you like, go for the Ska, which is far better. This one, unfortunately, is a real dog.

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Photo of PhilHeinricke
2.53/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Not My Fav

I love IPAs. I'd walk a mile in high heels to get some IPA. But this is probably one of the worst IPAs I've ever had. IPAs are known for their bitterness, but his takes the bitterness to a whole nother level. It was so bad that I ended up pouring the last few ounces down the drain, something that I have only done one other time.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
2.64/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

$3.25 single from Abe's.

A red/amber color, surprisingly dark and crystal clear. Creamy four-finger off-white micro bubble head. Good stretchy lacing.

A quick whiff of pine and a hint of citrus, but a rather disappointing aroma that leaves almost no impression.

Enjoyable semi-sweet foundation coats tongue. Juicy fruit. Hop nip at the swallow that increases in the aftertaste. Mid-level alcohol burn in the aftertaste, approaching high. Not enough hop and too much alcohol.

Medium mouthfeel is acceptable for style.

Overall, a disappointment. Hop sensations are only at a middling IPA level, and the alcohol the only imperial aspect.

Stay with Laughing Dog's IIPA bombers.

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Photo of u2carew
2.68/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz longneck.
A) Pours with a two finger thick head that has great retention. The body is mostly clear with amber and ruby hues.
S) Piney. Grapefruit. Subtle caramel / brown sugar aroma.
T) Citrus rind. Earthy and pungent. Lots of bitterness not much balance, although as the palate accustoms to the bitterness it does mellow some.
M) Creamy carbonation up front. Medium to full body. Dry with a gritty aftertaste.
O) A double IPA is supposed to have extra helpings of malt and hops to up the body, taste and ABV, but this sacrifices taste / flavor profile for the other two.

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Photo of champ103
2.73/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a dark, but clear ruby red color. A one finger white head forms with little retention or lace.
S: Hop resin overpowers everything at first. Some burnt sugars, caramelized malt with a sweetness that builds. Really sweet and really bitter at the same time.
T: Hop resin, bitterness, pine. Blah. Like someone just added a bottle labeled "bitter hops." After that faint caramelized malts at first. The sweetness builds again and the lingering after taste is a mess of cloying sweetness and really bitter hops. Just over barring.
M/D: A full body with decent carbonation. Sticky and syrupy. Not pleasant at all. Way to much bitterness and alcohol to be enjoyable.

Over barring. Not something I enjoyed, and not something I am coming back to.

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Photo of argock
2.76/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. No freshness date. Purchased as 4-pack at World Market (Charlottesville, VA) for $10.49.

A: Crystal clear amber with nice almost 2 finger head with good retention and nice lacing.

S: Aroma is heavy with sweet caramel malt and hot, solventy alcohol. The hops are piney and herbal and not a lot else.

T: The flavor is heavy caramel and hot, solventy alcohol. The hops are piney and don't play well with the solventy, jet fuel alcohol character at all.

M: Very slick and and somewhat astringent due to the big booze factor.

O: Not very good, but I have a feeling this is going to be a lot better with 3-4 years on it with all the caramel sweetness and the heat. Definitely not going to have another fresh (?) one.

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Photo of drpimento
2.85/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Geez, I don't know - hope I'm not getting too old to appreciate new, cutting edge trends; but to me, these over-the-top hopped beers taste like they're just that: out of balance, over the top, hopped beers. Seems to be the reasoning that just adding more and more hops is supposed to make the beer better and better, but I'm not buying it. So to speak. Anyway, poured with a nice, fine, thick, creamy, light tan head with good lace. Aroma is HOPS, malt, citrus and more citrus. Flavor is like nose with bittersweetness and a little funk standing out. Body is influenced by the bitterness and not so great in that regard. Finish is like flavor and of course, too long. Not my kind of brew.

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Photo of Natural510
2.9/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle, no date.

Pours a dark amber-brown, with a small amount of head and a scant lacing. Quite a different look for an IPA.

Scent is predominantly sweet molasses, caramel and dark fruit. Very, very malty nose.

Flavor is heavy on a brown-sugar/caramel malt. Hops, while present, stick to the background and are mainly noticeable in the trademark DIPA palate-burn. Sticky-sweet profile, like cherry-flavored rock candy.

Mouthfeel is fine, as far as body and carbonation are concerned.

This one was better cold, which is not a compliment. By the time it warmed, the sweetness was nearly unbearable. Less malt and more hops would benefit this DIPA greatly.

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Photo of HalfFull
2.94/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a pint glass. Sneaky Pete pours a fairly clear light amber in color. A half inch of foam offers decent retention and light lace.

Aroma is heavy on the caramel/rancid citic notes of the great Northwest and thier 'IPA's'. Yes, I said that out loud. Hop notes are typically muted behind the caramel malts. Not a fan.

Taste is malty as well of course and a bit thick, way too ballistic on the caramel malts. I wish I had the beer the cute dog is holding court over. Sneaky indeed as this is a borderline Amber Ale in my view. Offers a decent piney hop aroma but again cut too deep by the malts.

Overall thie beer does drink fairly well for its heft as the malty underbody is more of an impedence than the alcohol, which is well hidden. But then it is a rather large and dark cloak of malt that this beer offers up, so that isn't a surprise.

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Photo of snipes1216
2.94/5  rDev -23%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

I also have a bottle dated 8/11/2015 and it seems off. No carbonation, very malty and sweet. Very boozy. Not sure if this is supposed to be what it tastes like but I will pass next time I see it on the shelf.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
2.98/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bomber split with JP while trotching the wives at euchre. Man, that never gets old.

Pours a brownish red with the head riddled with brown highlights. Interesting if not typical.

Smell is a power packed malt driven monster with the booziness evident from the get go. Hops presence is muddled and nondescript.

Flavor is much the same. Big alcohol, chewy and meaty with some minty notes and rich malts. The hops don't pop here like I'd like and the big mouthfeel and alcohol make this somewhat of a chore.

If this beer is highly hopped, its not well executed. It's a monster, but one that I'd prefer stayed in the closet.

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Photo of Lerxst
3.03/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle with no date, but I just picked this up today and my guy at the store said it just came in this week so it should be nice and fresh.

A-Pours a hazy deep amber with a small off white head that receded quickly but leaves a ring of lace as you drink.

S-Sweet was the first thing that came to mind. Hmmm, a DIPA and my initial impression is "sweet?" Sweet, bready malt hits first, backed by citrus hops and a hint of pine. It doesn't have the prominent hop nose normally found in the style. Its definitely more of a balanced nose than many DIPAs, but the hops are taking a back seat here-and thats not a good thing as far as I'm concerned.

T-Sweet hits once more, its syrupy, a bit of boozy heat coming in, big malt backbone, citrus hops, slightly resinous, initial blast of sweet gives way to a slightly bitter finish.

M-Medium body, syrupy, slick.

O-Not really overly impressed or disappointed with this one. Its a decent beer, it just didn't wow me.

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Photo of tempest
3.18/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had a bottle for $8 at the Trapp Door (formerly Tap & Table). The beer was a bit disappointing. It might just need a little time to mellow, but there was a sharp alcohol note with resiny oil without enough hops flavor. There was some nice, floral fruit punch, but the good stuff was too light.

My score might look harsh for a beer that isn't too bad, but there are so many great examples of the style, it'd be a shame to get stuck on this one.

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Photo of chaz410
3.18/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bright ruby amber/light red with a finger width, white froathy head.
Smells of simcoe, citrus hops, pine and heavy caramel malt and toasted biscuits.
Taste of thick caramel and medium roasted malt. It has a biscuity character as well as a slight caramel corn underlay. There's some heavy citrus, pine and grassy hops lingering throughout but not in the typical IPA or DIPA manner, the malt plays out more than expected. A dry and apple peel like character hits at the finish.
Fairly sweet then dry in mouthfeel.
Pretty drinkable considering the 10% ABV

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Photo of Popp24
3.18/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beers pours a cloudy amber with a finger of white head. The smell is of malts and I don't get much else.

This beer doesn't taste like most IPA's. The hops in this beer are masked heavily by malts and this just gives it too sweet of a taste for my liking. The alcohol is definitely hidden so I get the sneaky part.

The mouthful is not bad; kinda of heavy.

Overall just not a big fan of this one and won't drink it again.

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Photo of beertunes
3.21/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a lightly hazy orange-gold color with less than a half-inch of light khaki head that had low retention and lacing.

The aroma mostly had some sweet malts as a base, with a light pine hop scent on top. There was a bit of citrus hops in the background. On the tongue, there were the same sweet malts and piney hops. The citrus hop taste was a bi bitter on the finish.

The body was on the full side of medium, which was OK for me, but the bitter finish lingered too long. Drinkability was decent enough, for a 10% brew, and my 12oz was gone quickly enough. Overall, a pretty take on the style, worth a shot if you see it.

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Photo of teromous
3.25/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottled 12/04/15

Appearance: Right off the bat I notice a ton of carbonation. Be careful when pouring this thing. The head is massive and has a creamy texture with an eggshell white color. The body is very murky. I can't see anything through it. The body of the beer is a deep orange brown color.

Aroma: It has a big malty nose with a fairly strong pine resin aroma. It smells a lot like a Barleywine.

Taste: The flavor mimics the aroma. It has a lot of malt flavor that is mixed with this strong pine flavor.

Mouthfeel: It is a very smooth and thick beer. It has a fairly heavy and dextrinous mouthfeel. The finish is extremely slick.

Overall: It drinks like an under-attenuated Barleywine but it has a very characteristic "East Coast" flavor. The flavors are good but the texture of the beer is way off. It is just too thick and syrupy. It is still drinkable and I can sit here and finish the beer but it just isn't a solid enough beer as a whole for me to want to drink it again. I don't really recommend it either.

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Photo of mactrail
3.27/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark orangey amber in the tall tulip. Modest foam with a pleasantly spritzy mouthfeel. Aromas of pine and herbal tea.

Strong flavors of malt as well as hops. Something like sugar cookie dough with a big dose of hops. Fruity and aromatic at first sip. Tasted like candied hop cones after a while. Rich and quite sweet. The hops are on the dank side with sharp and spicy flavors. On the whole quite strong, very hot, tasting of alcohol.

The murky and herbaceous type of big DIPA, though even sweeter than many. From the 12 o bottle purchased at Total Wine in Huntington Beach. Label says it was bottled 4/27/12.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.28/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

This bottle was brought to me from Florida as a Christmas present. About 8 months old when reviewed. From notes.

A - Two fingers of dense off white head sat on top of a copper/grapefruity coloured body. Cloudy. Great lace rings and a finger of retention.

S - Sweet candied, fruits, caramel, lot's of hops. Not the greatest DIPA aroma. Obviously faded.

T - The hops have definitely faded in the flavour. Sweet candy, barleywine style hops, big malt balance, honey.

M - Good carbonation, full body, nice bitterness with some alcohol.

O/D - Not a great DIPA. Good for its age but it's obviously lost something. It went down easy and wasn't too bad, but I'm sure it's much better fresh. Not a great showing.

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Photo of bound4er
3.31/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From a bomber.

A. Dark amber to reddish brown appearance. May be the darkest DIPA I've seen. Puffy, fluffy off-white two finger head. Lacing is good.

S. Leans to the malty side with cracker and bread aromas. A bit of Bing cherry, soap and a booze also emerges. Missing some of the characteristic hoppiness that most DIPAs possess.

T. Fruity upon entry with some grainy malt. Turns bitter and biting fairly quickly.

M. Next to the appearance, this may be this beers 2nd best attribute. Really feels nice in the mouth and is appropriately carbonated.

O. Average DIPA at best. Glad I only bought a bomber instead of a 4-pack that was available.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.31/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: A very interesting look, a great pinky of off white head and some nice lacing, but a semi clear dark crimson look...without the head would look like a cherry lambic. Good looking, but not exactly true to style.

S: Piney resinous hops mix with almost leathery fruity malts that seem to kind of smell like spoiled fruit after a while.... Certainly a good dose of wild honey smell in there that takes some from the hop bite. Some other kitchen spice like aromas pop up as well and the rye is there as well. Would like more hop character and less strange fruit.

T: Follows the smell in that honey really seems to dominate with other caramel sweet flavors and a bit of fruity citrus hops. Not a huge amount of bitterness, but there is definitely a bitter hop presence at the back, though its not the open hop flavor i crave so much and it seems to be over shadowed by the sweetness and the dry rye malts.

M: Sweet up front and bitter back, a little bit of an alcohol tinge in the feel for sure, a little burn over the tongue not too much though.

D: Eh, not an amazing beer, a little oversweet and not enough hops to back up the caramel malts and fruity notes overall.

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Photo of John_M
3.33/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours an orange amber color, with good head retention and lacing. The beer is a bit darker than I normally expect from a DIPA, but otherwise it looks attractive enough. The nose is worrisome, as there is considerable sweetness, along with a flowery, perfumy aroma profile. On the palate, this beer is a borderline disaster. It's very sweet, and tastes as if it's seen some serious oak aging (something that I generally think is a bad idea for an IPA/DIPA). There's some orange citrus and bitterness as well, but it's not nearly enough to counter and balance the sweetness and all too obvious alcohol. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a long, fairly bitter, alcoholic finish.

Thank God I only got a sample glass of this. Can't imagine trying to down a pint of this stuff.

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Sneaky Pete Imperial IPA from Laughing Dog Brewing
3.82 out of 5 based on 720 ratings.
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