Sneaky Pete Imperial IPA | Laughing Dog Brewing

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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 Ryan_Graham
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an amber read with minimal head. Decent lacing. Starts creamy, turns full-bodied. This is a solid beer. It goes down smooth and sweet. The maltiness serves to cover up the boziness well. This is a really decent beer. I'd give it a try if I were you.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.51/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

(bottled on 10 Mar 2014 - poured into a balloon)

NOTE: despite the label stating this is an "Imperial IPA", I believe they are mistaken, and this beer is more in the style of American Barleywine, with this being most similar to a SA Bigfoot

A: crystal clear liquid, surprisingly dark copper in color... dull, recycled paper white foam that just sits there for awhile... chunky, 3-D, crystalline lace... way too dark for an IPA - perfect color for a barleywine though

S: pine, custard-y fruit... the Centennial seems to poke out in the mix... a flash of dried berries and perhaps ginger snap that soon morph into a distinct raspberry sorbet scent... potent, inviting, smoothie-like... beautiful composition, but nothing too unique - textbook West Coast IPA hop aromas

T: noticeable dark crystal malt (80? 90? apparently, none)... mildly toasty... rich fruit syrup (Simcoe?)... large perception of sweetish, melanoidin-rich caramel in the aftertaste - hop-embellished... huge malts, potent hopping yet with a soft edge to the bitterness... smooth-ass booze with a hint of fusel

M: lusciously viscous up front, the alcohol draws it away quietly... the bitterness seems to enhance the dryness in the finish... heaven for malt-o-philes

O: summing up - definitely comes across most like an American Barleywine akin to (fresh) Bigfoot - it's gotta be a clone of it, or maybe they got their recipes or labels mixed up - either way, they oughta straighten that out and re-label the style... this is a very tasty beer, wonderfully dry, and exactly what I needed at the end of the day

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Photo of ksimons
3.43/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-much darker than I expected. A dark caramel color with a fingers worth of light tan head

S-caramel malt, raisins, and a light pine scent

T-taste is similar to the smell, more of a malt heavy IPA. Really getting a lot of caramel, raisins, buttery quality with a very light amount of citrus and pine hops.

M-medium body, mild to moderate carbonation

Overall too sweet for an IPA, not sure what it going on with this one, not one that I would revisit anytime soon

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Photo of Greywulfken
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: clear amber brown ale with a coupla fat fingers of beige head that laced the glass nicely

S: toast and faint perfume; woodsiness (is that a wood?) and some very faded dark grapefruit/citrus

T: pine and sweet resin, malty fruitiness; earthy and subdued; something caramel sweet; brown-tasting, if that makes sense

M: medium-weight, smooth, some coating and tack; almost smoky aftertaste

O: a decent beer, but I have no idea about the age - a random buy, I don't think it was ever in my stores before, but that doesn't mean it was fresh; in some ways reminded me of a very mellow SN Torpedo. Not typically one to go for IPAs or DIPAs this dark, so that may have skewed my review somewhat. Worth the try.

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Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
3.76/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours orange-amber, with just a hint of haze. Head was a solid finger of off-white with a touch of orange; it lingered fairly well, and left a decent lace clinging tp the walls of the glass.

S: Hops aromas dominate, with citrus oils, flowers, pineapple, and pine resin notes.

T: An explosion of cloyingly sweet malt, which is joined by fruity flavors of clementine and pear (but no diminution of sweetness). After a moment, tart and bitter grapefruit rind comes to the forefront, but even that fades to reveal the sugary sweetness again.

M: Crisp and perfectly carbonated. Slightly chewy, with the high ABV well hidden.

O: The hops were just about right, but the malt (and, I wouldn't doubt, adjunct sugars) just overpowered it. I've seen some reviewers mention that it's balanced, but they must have a serious sweet tooth to think so. That's not to say I didn't enjoy it, or even that I was surprised that a beer with the "imperial" name would have a lot of added sugar. I just think that turning it down a notch would have allowed the hops to really shine.

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Photo of Hopscat
4.37/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful amber-orange with off white head. Nice lacing and retention.
Smell is tropical fruit and floral hops.
Taste follows with big malt upfront to balance the well blended grapefruit pith / mango hops mid palate. Hops bitterness is welcome on the end to battle the sweetness of the malt bill.
Mouthfeel is med. toward heavy, oily.
Very enjoyable DIPA which hit all the high notes for me.

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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 GilGarp
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottled 6-12-13. Single 12 oz bottle brought to me by my brother in law from Oregon.

Served cold into a goblet, Sneaky Pete is a hazy brown amber with thick off-white head. It has very good retention and leaves some nice lacing.

Aroma is sweet and hoppy but not very fresh. Much more like a barley wine than an imperial IPA.

Flavor is big and bold but balanced. The malt bill is big enough to support the hops with a caramel and toffee sweetness. The hops are still there and supply decent bitterness but it isn't as intense as it likely was back in June when it was bottled.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated. The alcohol is there but it has settled in nicely over the past six months.

Overall a very solid barley wine but not what I was expecting given the label of imperial IPA.

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Photo of Scotchboy
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Partial, counter-pressure filled, marked 12oz bottle from an anonymous contributor...split with my brother into tulips.

A: Opens with a hiss, which is good considering the bottle is just over halfway full...clear golden color with big bubbles.

S: Big big tropical fruit component and a decent amount of citrus and super-fresh pine needle; in fact the pint is really nice on this one, and that is not usually something I'm a huge fan of. Slightly sugary malt backbone. Pungent.

T: Hop-driven here as well; tropical fruit basket, peach, mango, pineapple, citrus, orange peel, some pine, sugary/bready malt undertone, and pungent.

MF: Medium feel with moderate bitterness; this beer leans fruity instead of puckeringly bitter.

O: Really nice, remind me a lot of Lagunitas Sucks and other big tropical, malty double IPA's.

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Photo of joeworrall
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

comparing this tonight against Sierra Nevada Hoptimum and Firestone Walker Double Jack... tought competition!

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a wine goblet, the color is orange, and very clear, with at thin head. Aroma is citrus dominant with warm mouthfeel from the high alcohol content. The flavor is well balance, with a slightly bitter aftertaste, but very enjoyable.

This is a good IIPA, probably in my top 20, but against the other two I'm drinking tonight, it's in last place.

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Photo of Hokie888
4.45/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Randomly came across this beer the other day and boy am I happy I did. As a man that loves imperial IPAs, this one definitely is one of the better ones I've had lately. Good mixture of taste and smoothness. Most beers this strong (10%) would not taste this well but I came away very impressed. Must try for anyone who considers themselves an imperial IPA fan.

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Photo of dwren89
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: amber brown/reddish with fluffy off white head and good clarity

Aroma: citrusy with a little pine, grapefruit, caramel and toasted bread notes

Taste: definitely a hop driven beer, most of the taste comes from grapefruit and pine hop character, with slight toasted bread malt character. Some fusel alcohol taste present

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, medium carbonation

Overall: Definitely refreshing and delicious, this Imperial IPA is not too big and heavy that you can't have a few of them. However there seems to be a little body lacking to balance the hop bill. The beer comes off as a little too unbalanced, even for an Imperial IPA, but only slightly. The fusel alcohol notes are also present, though no totally unwelcome. Overall a good choice for a strong IPA, but I wouldn't say this is my favorite.

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Photo of chickenflea
3.91/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep amber, moderate to large tannish head, foamy, nice lacing. Strong resiny nose, pithy, slight alcohol and hops. Fruity malt aroma, not unlike a dubbel. Pours cloudy but settles quickly into a clear amber. Weird. Moderately sweet dark fruit flavor with hint of citrus. Hops are well blended and not overpowering as the trend seems to be lately. Alcohol is muted. Body is medium. Texture is chewy. When warmer, the beer finishes with a fairly dry mandarin orange taste. A nice double. Balanced in all regards. Good job.

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Photo of BaileysIrishTom
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

If this had a Stone label on it, I'm sure it would have a rating 10 pts higher.

At first pour, it appears very beer like, not too under beery, and not too over beery. Well I poured this one out of a bottle and in to my stomach, so I didn't really notice the foamy slowly slipping down the side of the glass. Hey I'm travelling and my favorite beer glasses don't pack well.
At first smell it smells very beer like, not too overpowering or underpowering. If I had to classify, then I would say it smells like beer.
It tastes and feels like beer. I'm pretty sure it must be beer. Note: some beers don't taste like beer. Beer shouldn't have chemicals in it.

If you've read this far, thank you. I'm comparing it to a Stone Brewed beer and that should speak volumes. It came as a "Total wine beer-geek" suggestion. I like it.

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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 bunkyzzz
4.75/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

my girlfriend gave me a 4 pack and it made me very happy. what can i say, it's from idaho. what else comes from Idaho that you would drive 30 minutes to get? it's strong enough to let you know it, but no unpleasant over-alcohol flavor.
great color, great head, great first gulp. fills the nose, fills the whole head.
for Imperials, this beer stands up with Lagunitas Sucks..
definitely try it. you will like it. especially if your girlfriend gives you a 4 pack.

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Photo of MikeWard
3.44/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

poured from 12oz bottle into standard pint glass. Bottled on 2/10/13, so a bit older than would be preferred.

Knew I was in trouble upon cracking open the cap and the beer foamed over. Not a lot. but you wouldn't expect that from a beer that's been upright in the fridge for 2 weeks.

Appearance was ok, deep amber, quite hazy, slightly off white head which retained. Most lacing was around the original head. Faint but persistent stream of bubbles.

Smell was soapy with a few floral tones.

Taste & mouth was not what I expected, or perhaps I should have. Zero hop taste, but loads of malt. Alcohol taste toward the end, then bitter on the middle back of the tongue. Semi thick cloying syrupy feel on the tongue. Sweet, but not in an appealing way. Later, the 10.0 alcohol kicked in. No, I am not liking this one bit.

Overall, not something I enjoyed. Perhaps it would be more pleasing in the winter months. Upon reading the label, this beer was "bottled and brewed for" their Virginia distributor. I am in PA, and Shangy's distributes out here, but I can't think of any reason that should matter in the taste. Guessing their beers get redistributed out east as needed.

Hopefully I have an opportunity to taste a fresher one in the future. Otherwise, it's adios to Sneaky Pete.

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Photo of brentk56
3.65/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: The liquid pours a clear amber and is topped by an impressive head that does its job on the lacing front

Smell: Big, biscuity caramel malts with spearmint and pine sap

Taste: Up front, the taste buds are overwhelmed by the malt - caramel, biscuit and some spicy rye; in the middle, the hops come on strong, bringing an aggressive bitterness that verges on piney but is generally just bitter; in the finish, the malts dominate though the hops don't give up

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Overall: As others have noticed, this beer comes off more like a Barleywine than a DIPA; I don't really care for the hop profile and I prefer my DIPAs to be a bit more one-sided in favor of the hops

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Photo of mvanaskie13
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a pilsner style glass, color is darker amber, opaque, with copper edges; head is light tan, very dense and thick, presenting about 1" thick then lingering with feint lacing.

Smell is lightly boozy, with very balanced amounts of malt and piney bitterness, touch of grapefruit; malt scents are light toast, caramel and biscuit.

Taste is surprising for this strength, pretty well balanced, very bitter but not overdone. Malt sweetness is present and flavors are similar to the nose, toast and caramel hints of biscuit.

Mouthfeel is lightly cloying and strong on the tongue, but expected at this strength and with this color, maybe a touch too much for my preference.

Overall, very well done dipa, surprising balance for its strength; presents with a hint that it might be to sweet, but the great bitter and hop flavors clean it up well.

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Photo of hackmann
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: amber blood orange body with a one finger, if that, bone white head and little to no lacing

Aroma: citrus and grassy hops, little fruity – mango like, very aromatic, lightly toasted grains,

Flavors: rich caramel malts; toasted sweet grains; a solid combination of grapefruit, little pine, and sweet pink peppercorn;

Mouthfeel: fine fizzy carbonation feel, almost creamy, sticky hops, nice bitterness, balanced with an earthy sweetness, nice alcohol warmth, pink peppercorn and red grapefruit on the finish, full-medium body,

To the Point: this is a very nice Imperial IPA; it gets better as it warms up; this is a must try; and I am personally feeling the 10%

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Photo of Ego
4.26/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a nit over one finger of foam, a deep ruby red tone with a mere smattering of bubbles rising up, lacing is a really nice drape of microbubbles of equal proportion, some legs are apparent from the ABV, pretty good looking, the hue is definitely different from many DIPAs passing through these parts

some big pine and citrus (grapefruit), definite malt lurking underneath that melds with the alcohol, you can sense the alcohol but it is like smelling a barleywine, you kind of expect the scent and enjoy it rather than it being a distraction from a brew that is to hot alcohol wise, the hop aroma is by no means a bomb destroying you with hop-dom, I would guess this is not dry hopped but that is fine, I like the balance here, I suppose it reminds me of Bigfoot but yet without that barleywine twang if you know what I mean

taste etc...
thick and juicy booty, very subtle carbonation.. it almost lulls you into thinking it has none but it has just enough to carry the weight, the massive amounts of malt really carry the water here, loads of body and backbone support the medium strong hop punch, this is not a mouth destroying hop experience, the balance of the hop varities is really nice with the malts chosen, for the ABV this is remarkably smooth, it has a sweet finish which masks the alcohol hit but you do get the nice bittering at the same time, this really hits on all points
hop punch
malt sweetness

it is in balance which is not always the case with beers in this ABV range/style.

I had tried various things from this brewery in the past and was actually unimpressed, well, paint me silly and call me hoohah, this is one damn awesome brew, a definite sleeper this thing just seems so easy going that it will tank you without you noticing, but the main point is how well rounded/crafted this is. is it a pure DIPA ? eh... who cares, it is a damn fine beer. and as far as I know dogs can not laugh... but I have seen them smile.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours an amber brown leaning more towards amber with a full head. Head retains well. Chunky lacing on the glass.

S: Piney hops, sweet caramel aroma.

T: Full flavor - starts sweet - nice malting. Caramel, grapefruit, pine. Bitter hop aftertaste and really nicely balanced.

M: Good, but falls somewhat short of other ratings. Not as full as expected but still nice.

O: Great brew.

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Photo of Esstman
4.39/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sneaky Pete's is very comparable to Hopslam but runs about 60% the cost and is available late spring and all summer. It is a great imperial IPA with an abundance of hops and a smooth finish. At 10% it is strong but by no means shows its high alcohol % in its taste. A great starter to any evening of drinking.

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Photo of dbl_delta
3.99/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle dated 8/23/15 into pint glass. Pours a slightly cloudy deep amber with an off-white head. Initial impression is an interesting balance of a) hops, b) booze, and c) malt. Really thick, sticky mouthfeel - too much for the style, although I didn't find it off-putting. Alcohol is pretty evident - this is not sneaky by any standard. Moderately bitter finish.
This is really pretty good, all things considered. It's not the best IIPA I've had, but it's certainly enjoyable.

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Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.69/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

32 oz. growler filled today from a freshly tapped keg where the line was cleaned during the change, poured into a NB snifter.

A - Pours a rich golden brown. A one-finger head of eggnog-white loose, fluffy foam with lots of pronounced bubbles falls at a moderate pace, leaving a ring of broken lace around the glass and islands of soap suds bubbles on the surface. Held to a full-spectrum light, the beer is a vibrant, almost neon orange red and rather opaque, although a tiny column of effervescence can be seen rising through the middle. Rich, sugary legs coat the glass as it's finished.

S - Woody hops weave into rich caramel malts, which weave into citrus / tropical fruit hops. Hints of white pepper spiciness jump to grapefruit and pineapple and then to caramels with notes of orange and honey. Just as a particular scent emerges, it disappears and turns into another. It's a complex and interesting effect. As it warms, the rich sugars of the malts come forward; it's almost a hopped-up Scotch ale.

T - Woody bitterness on a blanket of rich caramel-toasted breads. Lots of underlying malts to transport the hops, but the two sides of the coin aren't really one. Finish is dominated by a sense of dried flowers, with the bitterness giving the malts the taste of somewhat burnt light wheat toast. Still, that toast also comes with orange marmalade and honey. There's an overall rough edge to this taste profile that offers a backend that wants to kiss and make up. The ABV on this beer is very-well hidden and there's no suggestion that it's the alcohol providing the edge. As it warms in the glass, some rather subtle suggestions of tropical fruit appear in the finish, but even then they're nowhere what the nose suggests they might be.

M - Somewhat fizzy with moderate carbonation. Moderate body and with a somewhat loosely integrated structure where the malts and hops are in the same neighborhood but not closely joined. Decently long finish that's dominated by the hops but allows occasional echos of the caramel sugars on the tongue.

O - There's clearly lots of rich ingredients in this brew, but the forwardness of the woody hops along with the rye malts gives it a roughness, like a rip saw thru old lumber, that isn't overcome by the rest of the flavors. This beer screams for barrel-aging to take this edge off. It would have also been nice to get the grapefruit and tropical fruits present in the nose fully into the taste profile, but it seems they get overrun from roughness. The nose was really interesting in the way the various components kept darting in and out around each other, but this translated into a loose-jointed brew when drinking rather than an integrated one where the tastes transitioned elegantly.

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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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