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Overrated West Coast IPA | Surly Brewing Company

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Overrated West Coast IPAOverrated West Coast IPA

Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
It's been said; "Its easier to brew an extremely hoppy beer than an extremely balanced beer." And you know us, we are always looking for the easy way out, so we jumped on the West Coast IPA Bandwagon and brewed this dry and hoppy ale. "Surly's a little bit of a one-trick pony, they just brew gimmick beers," and maybe we are OVERRATED, but at the end of the day it's just a beer. If yo like it, great, so do we. If you only liked us when we were small, then leave this one on the shelf. Let one of the fanyboys grab it.

Added by MasterSki on 02-05-2013

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Reviews: 236 | Ratings: 1,624
Photo of dar482
4.73/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This pours out beautiful in a deep hazy orange that you can barely see through with a tight white head.

The aroma has big sweet pineapple, mango, very tropical, lot of pine. There’s some orange and bit of grapefruit too. Not a huge huge aroma despite being 7 weeks old (5/14/13), but quite wonderful smelling. In the back, there’s some of that cat pee or dankness. As it warms up, those last characteristics bloom out more and you just get some pure "hop" aroma. It's not specific really, but just flowery, big, dank hops.

The flavor hits you immediately with huge grapefruit. There’s a bit malt sweetness in there too, but not very malty or sweet. Not much of a bit palate there.

The bitterness on the end is very piney and grapefuit peel and pith. It really is that bitter pith. It’s really bitter and leaves the tongue extremely dry.

The mouthfeel is a good medium.

Wow, what a wonderful example of the West Coast style. Not very malty, aggressively bitter and dry.

In the end, I really like this beer. As a single IPA, I really would be happy to have this all the time. The lack of malt really makes this super easy to drink and that huge bitterness eventually becomes a highlight of the beer (though offensive for some probably). I won’t say it’ll blow your socks off, but for the style, this is where it’s at.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured out as a nice golden color, very clear looking with a fluffy white head on top. The retention and lacing are very nice on this beer. The smell has a solid amout of citrusy pine hop aromas. The taste is also quite hoppy but does have a solid malt backbone to it as well. The mouthfeel is smooth with a bit of boozy heat to it. Overall I enjoy it, I look forward to drinking the rest of the cans I got.

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Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a very impressive head (two inches and good retention) that leaves plenty of lacing behind

Smell: Citrus and hemp, with tropical fruit undertones

Taste: All hops and no malt, dominated by hemp and tropical fruit more than citrus; very bitter, after the swallow, with a touch of medicinal aspirin

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: Surly got what they were shooting for though from my personal standpoint, I would prefer more citrus in the flavor profile

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Photo of fmccormi
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Straight pour from a 16oz can to an oversized wineglass (my nice Tired Hands stem). Canning date of May 30, 2013 printed in black ink underneath the can (“CANNED ON 05/30/2013”), making this can 23 days old on the date of consumption—just over three weeks.

Appearance (3.5): Two and a half good fingers of cream-colored foam comes off of the pour, capping a nearly-clear, orange, honey-gold body that right now looks perfect. Moderate lacing (just some suds here and there), and decent but not excellent retention.

Smell (4.0): Nice, slightly vegetal, slightly herbal, weedy aroma, underlay by dry, bready tones like common crackers or dry biscuits. Also some clear, bright citrus tones, part juice and part zest, like lemonade and some grapefruit. Overall, a pretty nice aroma.

Taste (4.0): A solid, surprisingly multifaceted bitterness leads the charge and marks both mid-palate and finish: one part grapefruit peel, one part dank resin, one part herbal-vegetal bitterness. Huh. The middle also bears a modest dose of tangerine juice and papaya flesh, with a nice mix of toasted white bread and sugar cookies. The dry breadiness leaves lots of room for the bitterness, and the sugar cookies meld with the sweet citrus very well. Neutral American yeast character, with no booze detected.

Mouthfeel (4.25): Very dry with a soft, velvety but modest carbonation. The hop oils are clear and present but not overpowering, with a very nice drying action. The body could be a bit more active for my preferences, but this is ridiculously easy and pleasant to drink—it goes down way too easily.

Overall (4.0): I actually really dig this one. It’s not as crazily bodacious as probably most people were expecting (like a Baby Abrasive / Abrasive Jr.?), but it’s well-crafted, easy to drink, and has bitterness to spare. Hell, with all the no-bitterness hops schedule (D)IPA rage going on, it’s twice as bitter as some well-regarded (D)IPAs I’ve had. The bottom line is that this beer, at least in terms of flavor, aroma, and feel, does everything you might want it to, and very well. Its weakest point is without a doubt in the appearance, and the strongest point is its solid and surprisingly dynamic appearance (and crazy drinkability). A really enjoyable beer.

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Photo of zeledonia
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A new canned beer from Surly! Canned 10 April 2013, tasted 20 April 2013, reviewed from notes.

Pours a pretty pale clear golden yellow, much paler than most of Surly's beers. One finger of whitish head, decent retention and lacing.

Smell is very piney, and kinda thin. Has a medium-thin malty base, but mostly it's potent piney hops. It's kinda what I'd expect from the way this beer is marketed, but I want something more.

Taste is similar to smell. 3/4 bitter, most of the flavor is pine. Dry in the finish. Reminds me a lot of classic West Coast IPAs like Bear Republic Racer 5 and Green Flash West Coast IPA. Taste is a straight-up piney bitter, resiny. Good, but simple.

Feel is nice, medium-bodied, with a va-va-voom carbonation erupting in my mouth.

Good but not amazing. I think it hit exactly what they were aiming for - a piney hop-forward IPA. I like it, and could drink more, but I want something a little more developed.

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Photo of portia99
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16oz can (canned 5/08/13) poured into an Idle Hands tulip.

A - Pours a translucent pale orangey gold color. A one finger cap of creamy off white foam lingers for a minute and leaves lots of webby lacing on the glass.

S - Fresh citrus with grapefruit up front and some sweet oranges. Hops are front and center, but some bready and grainy malt comes thru as well. Actually has quite a good balance in the aroma. Nothing too complex but solid all around.

T - Bitter hops hit right away with some fruitiness behind it - grapefruit and some piney and resiny character. Very faint biscuity malt presence at the base. More bitter than filled with hop flavor, maybe even a touch medicinal in its bitterness.

M - Medium body with a medium to somewhat strong carbonation level. Hops are the focus with a big resiny bitterness throughout. A bit lacking in hop flavor next to the big bitter presence.

O - Overall a good IPA for me and very solid overall. Lacking a bit in flavor hop character with the bitterness overpowering to some extent. Very solid although I definitely prefer a can of Furious or Abrasive over this one.

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Photo of xmorgan
5/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a tasty IPA in the west coast style? It is very balanced and not overtly hoppy. It is a very well made IPA! My only complaint is it is in a can!
Pour it into a glass!

Apperance: Orangish amber forms a white head and nice lacing
Smell: hoppy citrus aroma
Taste: dry hop heaven it is well balanced and awesome I normally am more discriptive but hoppy and well balanced is all I can say
Overall: this is a well made beer and not overtly over hopped. Would dri no it again and again!

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Photo of jhawth
3.55/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Finished a four pack over the course of the week, this is from aggregated notes:

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass. Pours a slightly cloudy, golden yellow, fluffy two-finger head with good head retention.

Aroma: Citrusy hop notes, muted grapefruit, a little bit of pine resin. It's been a while since I had a Furious, but it seems to me that this has much less of the grapefruit and other tropical fruit notes that I get from Furious.

Taste: Malts up front, more than I expected. Almost a cereal character? Then moderate hop bitterness. Citrusy notes from the nose are not as prevalent. Some sweetness noticeable after the initial hop appearance.

Mouthfeel: Light. Light, crisp carbonation.

Overall: A very well balanced, very drinkable IPA. I'll probably drink more of this over the summer, and will come back to edit my review as needed. I'll be curious to compare it more closely with Furious, knowing that they are very different beers.

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Photo of mhksuccess
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a 3FFF teku glass
pours golden with about 1/2 inch of head
smell is that kind of fruity hoppy
taste is nice fruity hops very drinkable
has good bittering hops but i have been drinking some top notch amazing ipas
this is top level but just a not quite the upper ecehlon although is really good
maybe it could have been a bit fresher although with no comparison i tend to think
this one has not fallen off any and my review is accurate

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Photo of BobZ
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint can poured into a Duvel tulip. Big thanks to roon.

Appearance: Dark golden yellow with a nice 1" head that leaves very nice sticky lacing.

Smell: Piney hops with some tropical fruit below.

Taste: Tropical citrus up front but the pine resin from the hops is the dominant flavor on the finish. I would say the pine flavors outweigh the citrus notes overall.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, well carbonated, and the hops leave the palate clean.

Overall: A nice take on a west coat IPA, having the fruit flavors under strong piney hops seems spot on.

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Photo of Kadonny
4.39/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I got this via trade with my good friend Ted from Minnesota (NuBrewm). I'm lucky to try this.

Poured from a can into a pint glass.

A: A light to medium orange color with a 2 finger off white head. Nice full glass lacing.

S: Tropical fruits dominate the nose with mango, pineapple, grapefruit, tangerine and some slight pine notes. Slight, slight sweetness.

T: Wow, a big difference with this compared to Furious. Huge tropical fruits dominate with the mango, pineapple, grapefruit, some tangerine and lemon hints too. There is some slight pine notes, but they are overwhelmed by the fruits. Sweetness is there, but barely. This is one hoppy brew that balances on the hoppy side of the spectrum. The malt holds it together, but it's not near as malty as Furious and it's more of an afterthought on this beer. Finish stays super clean, dry and crisp with some real nice bitterness. Great beer.

M: Clean, crisp and dry but still medium overall at it fills your mouth with flavors. Not much alcohol is detected.

O: A fantastic beer that is a great contrast to Furious. The can says it's West Coast style and unbalanced, most of which is true. There is some balance there that makes it very, very drinkable.

Brew this one again Surly, you have a winner here. Love the crispness of it.

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Photo of jeonseh
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at DLD

A - Light orange with nice white head to it. Slightly hazy body

S - Orange and grassy. Actually smells a bit like weed with a rich and earthy grassiness.

T - Pine and grass up front. It also has a nice citrus aspect to it as well which tastes a bit like orange juice. The finish is very grassy and earthy from the pine.

M - Medium carbonation with a resiny aspect that lingers on the finish

O - Solid grassy and resiny IPA that is dominated by wet and juicy hops. Another great IPA from Surly.

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Photo of chanokokoro
4.19/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16 oz. tallboy can into a Surly Brewing Company branded shaker pint glass. Thanks to Oboogie for both the brew and glass

Pours a slightly hazy golden amber with light orange highlights. Fluffy, yet sticky clean white head; great retention and plenty of lacing. Big hops notes on the nose. A cornucopia of tropical fruit: pineapple, mango, orange, and pleasant piney accents. Tangerine, mandarin orange, pineapple, and mango initially. Papaya joins in midpalate and is met by bitter grapefruit flesh and rind. Medium body with ample malt backbone; smooth, soapy and oily body with some creaminess. Very enjoyable, a bit more balanced than expected. Excellent for the style.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.87/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Can from kjyost. From notes.

A - Poured hazy golden. Soapy two finger white head on top. Good carbonation coming up. Decent lace rings and a film of retention.

S - Lot's of citrus. Boozy apricots maybe? There's definitely an alcohol note there combined with lot's of big juicy citrus fruits.

T - Pungent dank hops. Apricot, grapefruit, marijuana, alcohol soaked fruits.

M - Very dry. Bitter up front and in the finish. Good carbonation and a medium body. Solid feel.

O/D - A nice IPA. Very dank and bitter. If they were going for West Coast, they seem to have nailed it. Good stuff.

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Photo of woosterbill
4.36/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

16oz can from exactly one month ago, poured into a Duvel tulip. Thanks Dan!

A: Clear orange body topped by two fingers of dense off-white head. Terrific retention and lots of sticky lacing. Gorgeous IPA.

S: Pungent hoppiness, with a 50/50 mix of sweet tropical fruit and aromatic pine, verging into spruce/fir territory as it warms. Really nice.

T: Floral and fruity up front, with resinous piney bitterness following a brief moment of caramelized malt sweetness. Long, citrusy aftertaste. Complex, more balanced than the can would suggest, and thoroughly delicious. Really drinkable for 7.3%, too. Great.

M: Creamy, fairly light carbonation in a rather oily medium body. A bit stickier than I'd like for the style, but just fine.

O: Wonderful IPA, and if anything I'd say it's currently underrated. Reminded me quite a bit of Ithaca Flower Power, which is a high compliment in my mind. Really glad I got to try this.


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Photo of AltBock
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16oz. can with a somewhat patriotic design. A red, white, and blue (mostly blue) design that has fireworks, stars, fighter planes, and cheering fans at the bottom. It's hard to miss the large bold "Over Rated!" in the middle. The back of the can contains a description of the beer. On the bottom is a born on date of 04/02/13. Happily consumed on May 25, 2013.

When poured into a Cigar City pint glass, this west coast style IPA that was made in Minnesota poured a semi hazy and bright solid golden orange color. I thought I saw a few yellow highlights, but I think that was the gold shining in the light. There's gold in this beer. On top of this golden brew was a fluffy cotton white 1/2 an inch head of foam. This head of foam had modest retention that managed to leave behind a dim string of white rings and a large island of foam in the beer. I'm a fan of gold so I enjoyed the appearance of this beer.

When you say "West Coast Style IPA," I'm expecting a large whiff of bitter citrus hops and citrus fruits. This aroma had those aromas, but they were more on the tame side. The aroma kicked off with the bitter citrus hops. These bitter citrus hops lasted a few seconds before it let through the citrus fruits. My nose didn't pick up on my citrus fruits. I picked up bitter grapefruit, a dab of lemon, and a splash of orange. Following the fruits was a little pine, some floral notes, and a gentle whiff of toasted malt.

The taste started off soft with a tiny amount of pine needles. Then out of nowhere, in comes a huge bitter crispy taste. This big bitter taste had a good mix of citrus hops and floral hops. It was a bit on the interesting side. This hop taste lasts for a while before it lets through anything else. Following the mixed hop punch was a taste of bitter grapefruit, a splash of lemon peel, and a tiny gentle taste of toasted malt. Not much hiding behind the hop punch, but I'm fine with that.

This was a medium bodied West Coast Style IPA that had plenty of carbonation to keep your to tongue entertained, and a mild citrus/floral bitter aftertaste. This aftertaste contained a small amount of the citrus/floral hop bomb from the initial taste, a pinch of bitter grapefruit, and a nice toasted malt taste at the finish line.

A very good West Coast style IPA from the Midwest. I would like to thank fellow BA Lionssoccer for hooking me up with this nice canned IPA. Would I drink it again? I'll never say no to a Surly.

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Photo of garymuchow
4.19/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Fresh hop aroma that is smooth and not heavy. Pale malt background. Clean and enjoyable.
Light colored AIPA. More golden and slightly cloudy. Big frothy head that settles out and leaves lots of lacing.
Well done bitterness, which is foreground but not excessive. The hops flavors blend in nicely and are like the fresh aroma. Supporting pale malt with little sweetness or marking. All pretty much supportive. At times the hop oils can get a little passed the nice mark for me, but overall they are held in check.
Smooth drink with a nicely done carbonation. Lighter side of moderate.
Surprised this is a smaller beer as it doesn't necessarily drink bigger than Furious. A nice AIPA. Enjoyable all around.

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Photo of Treebs
3.79/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to iadler for the beer! 16 oz. can served in a Midnight Sun chub.

A: Pours a clear orange color with a thin white head forming on the pour. It recedes to a thin ring that leaves some splotchy lace down the glass.

S: Nice notes of citrus with some orange pith. Sweet pale malts balanced out the beer.

T: Same as the nose. Nice bursts of citrus fruits with some lingering bitterness on the back end. Slightly piney with a hefty dose of orange pith to dry it out.

M: Medium to light bodied with a medium carbonation level. Light bitterness on the finish.

O: Not the best thing I've had from Surly. Pretty one dimensional in the flavor department.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16 oz. can that was poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. Liquid comes out a slightly darker than straw yellow. It has some pretty good clarity to it, glows when held up to the light and you can see right through it. Thick white head with many different sized bubbles, great lacing, stays there the whole time.

Smell is really good, has it's own distinct aroma profile, but has some similar characteristics of any quality "West Coast IPA." Very hoppy without being abrasive (no pun intended) or over powering. Plenty of pine, citrus zest (primarily grapefruit) and some slight floral notes. As strong as the hopes are there is still a noticeable sweet malted barley tone as well, it's very nice and well balanced.

Taste is on point, they nailed it. There's a big speech on the back of the can talking about how Surly is jumping on the bandwagon because it's easer to brew a hoppy beer than a balanced beer. Yes this is certainly a hoppy beer, but I was pretty impressed with the balance on this hoppy IPA. There's a nice initial sweetness has some toasted caramelized pale malts. After that it's balanced out with plenty of citrus, grapefruit zest, and a sweet sticky pine flavor. All good and even though it's hoppy, it still maintains a balance.

Mouthfeel is really good. Lighter bodied and less full than Surly Furious. Like I mentioned before, even though it's hoppy, there's a nice balance. Starts off sweet and has a nice dry, very dry bitter finish. This beer is crazy, super drinkable. I'm jealous of those who have this available to them year round.

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Photo of emerge077
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bright saturated orange, slightly hazed, sticky foam all around the glass.
Huge citrus pith in the aroma, very citric hops high in alpha acids.
Bitter grapefruit, bittersweet orange marmalade. Slick green resin. Super drinkable.
Rivals the best of the West Coast. Get some!

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Photo of facundoCNB
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

a beautiful clean orange/copper pour with a full 2 fingers of white head which dissipated slowly giving off some great lacing. smells of piney grapefruit hops, caramel, bready/biscuity. not overly hoppy flavor, meaning the hops are there bu si in the back of the palate. the hops are grassy, herbal, mint-like, with notes of pine, grapefruit citrus, the malt profile is bready with hints of caramel sweetness. medium body, creamy mouthfeel, with modest amount of carbonation.

really enjoying this one. perfectly balanced ipa.. never a disappointment from this brewery.

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Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.24/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16-ounce can into a DFH IPA glass.

A: Pours a clean, pale gold color with ample carbonation and a slight chilled haze. Creamy, two-finger head of bone-white foam lingers well into the brew and leaves a weak web of clingy lace.

S: Very nice bouquet of spicy, floral and fruity hops with overtones of grapefruit, lemon and tangerine.

T: Delicate, creamy toasted malt up front imparts a biscuit flavor and cushion for the blend of herbal, spicy and citrusy hops that wash over the palate. Quite bitter but well-balanced, the hop bitterness washes into a resinous finish with a solid-enough malt backbone to lessen the burn.

M: Light-medium bodied, slightly creamy and well-balanced characteristics make it a very nice-drinking IPA.

O: This 7.3% ABV pop of hops from Surly only lives up to its name in the sense that you've probably had some better American IPAs, but maybe none as clean, well-balanced and decidedly West-Coast as Over Rated; I am looking squarely at you, California. Definitely worth trying out and grabbing if you can.

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Photo of BeerNutz324
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can into a pint glass

Ap- pours clear and is golden/yellow/orange in color. the thin white head has decent retention for a beer of this style

Ar- citrusy hops, grass, earth, grapefruit with a sweet biscuity malt backbone

T- same as the nose almost to a T

M- bubbly, light to medium bodied, resinous and a bit dry, you can get a hint of booze on the hold too

O- a really good beer but it's not amazing, still a good offering at a good price. I like the complexity of a Furious better

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16 oz. poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Clear golden orange. Small white head leaves wisps and some lacing.

Smell - Lots of pine and grass. Malt comes through behind it. Straightforward IPA aroma.

Taste - More grassy hops than the nose, even. Lots of pine and grass. Drops off to a sweet malt. Big dichotomy. Low bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium body but as soon as the hops drop off, it gets sweet.

Overall - Meh. Not up to Surly's IPA standards.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.21/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had this on 2013-05-20 in Columbia, PA. Special thanks to Matador677 for sharing this brew. Had this again on 2013-06-11 in Maple Grove, MN

A - Lightly-hazy, golden-orange with a 1-finger strong white head that leaves good, sheeted lacing.

S - Sweet orange and not-quite-ripe peach. Hop floral. Light pine. Not dank. Smells good. Strong but not aggressively so, like a Heady Topper.

T - Hop bitter bite followed immediately by sweet orange flesh (almost candied), mild caramel, good amount of pine, orange blossom tea, light pale malt. More lemon-zest-bitterness in the finish than initially or mid-quaff.

M - Light-medium body and medium carbonation. Prickly and somewhat resinous. Dries nicely.

O - I really enjoyed this brew. It is moderately-balanced; at least for someone that really likes a citrus-pine-bitter finish. When I think of a balanced IPA/DIPA, Pliny the Elder comes to mind. This doesn't have as much malt. I'd say it is more like a fresh Ballast Point Sculpin but with a Surly-twist. Glad I travelled to Minnesota this summer so I've been able to have this again.

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Overrated West Coast IPA from Surly Brewing Company
4.07 out of 5 based on 1,624 ratings.
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