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Imperial Pelican Ale | Pelican Pub & Brewery

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very good
29 Reviews
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Imperial Pelican AleImperial Pelican Ale

Brewed by:
Pelican Pub & Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jtfest on 03-01-2004

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 29 | Ratings: 128
Photo of snaotheus
3.33/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

22oz bottle at 41 F poured into a large mug. Poured some of the sediment in. Bottle 9/26/13, so it's a bit old. I'm diving in anyway.

Pours cloudy amber/orange with a biggish head, fades moderately quickly, leaves sheets of lacing behind. Smell is mild and nondescript.

Taste is a nondescript bitter. Some slight honey. Again, fairly mild.

Mouthfeel is smooth, nice. Overall, not bad, just kind of nondescript and unexciting.

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Photo of Zorro
3.39/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber colored ale with a medium sized off-white colored head.

Scents of caramel and menthol hop with some wood and tea scents. Slight syrup smell and an earthy mushroom aroma.

Starts out mildly sweet with a citrus flavor and a mild bitter finish. Gets a little more bitter as you drink it but it is far from harsh. Caramel, wood and tea flavors like the smell.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a tasty DIPA.

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Photo of lighthabit
3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

quick shot here -

clear, golden color, a bit lighter than i usually look for in my ipas (is it an ipa? it's under american strong, but tastes like an ipa to me. hops ahoy!). pretty good lacing, points for that. head has a dryness that presents well. smell is standard ipa, taste is, as well. a nice standard ipa, not sure how it's an imperial, though. nothing wrong here, just not much to write home about, which is too bad, since it probably won't get the recognition it deserves for doing a good job of representing the style. mouth feel is a tad dry, and i'd like to see a bit more carbonation . . . but i'm starting to think that's just me. hides its 8% fairly well.

note - as an experiment, added a third of a shot of maker's mark, and it livened it up quite well. i think brews that have a simplicity about them do better at this, rather than trying to fix an obviously bad brew, so kudos to pelican for providing a solid foundation. went great with carrot cake. :)

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Photo of jakecattleco
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Unknown age bottle into a Spieglau IPA glass. While visually appealing, I wanted much more from the nose. Flavor was OK, with a good finish. Won't buy again, nor seek out.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a finger and half of head on medium straw colored body.
The aroma is pine and more pine.
The taste is a bold pine bitterness with a good malt backup to balance it out nicely.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation.
An enjoyable and solid ale.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

not my favorite beer here, especially from these guys, not sure how fresh our bottle was, but it tasted a little overdone, and like it was starting to drop off. intended to be a bold expression of cascade hops, i think it shows us where the line is, or at least what it looks like to be on the other side of it. these hops are intensely oily in this thicker golden honey colored brew, spicy, even harsh at times, and thats before the gnarly bitterness sets in over the sweeter oils in the finish. classic case of too much of a good thing i reckon, this was overly pungent and a little less refined and not so easy to drink. i could do without a little of the grain sweetness, but its needed for balance, it just makes the beer taste and feel enormous, especially with the alcohol not so well hidden and the constantly increasing temperature of this due to my slow pace on this one. i like the idea, but they have pushed it a little too far here, and without the freshest of fresh in my glass here, im not sure i would want to drink this again. this is my least favorite beer i have had from these guys so far, although its not bad at all, just overly intense. maybe built for the hophead who likes the full on palate thrashing hop assault in place of more carefully refined hoppy beers...

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Photo of buschbeer
3.61/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in an oversized wine glass

This beer pours amber in color with golden highlights. It is topped with an inch of beige head that leaves some decent lacing

It has a resinous nose indicative of the west coast style.

The taste is loaded with bitterness. I really can't get much else due to the overwhelming bitterness.

Moderate mouthfeel

I am just not a fan of these bitter west coast style IPA's. I prefer my Midwestern juicy IPA's. I am so lucky to have so many juicy options in Ohio. Give me tropical and citrus IPA's any day.

 565 characters

Photo of mactrail
3.61/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Handsome pale orange amber color in the deep-dish chalice. Body has plenty of malty substance but is refreshing and on the light side for a big Imperial. A whiff of pine and orange blossoms in the nose. Spritzy and tangy on the tongue.

The taste starts with a puff of sweet malt on the lips. The resiny grapefruit peel takes over soon, but the malt develops a strong presence. Some alcohol taste along with toasted grains. Rather sharp with a zingy hop note that drives into the taste buds. Aftertaste is a lingering bitterness with something that makes me think of shelac.

Overall this is somewhat restrained and more elegant than the typical big slobbering DIPAs. Still, it's plenty bitter. From the 22 oz bottle purchased at Special Brews in Lynwood, Washington.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap into a tulip glass

A- Poured a semi-hazy dark orange color with visible carbonation, white head that glass coating lace

S- Big pungent grapefruit, orange citrus, pine, and sweet caramel malts. Pretty strong aroma and pretty standard for a DIPA

T- Big sticky grapefruit, pine, tons of sweet caramel malts. THe malt profile on this beer is quite strong and very sweet.

M- A little syrupy, some warming on the finish, prickly carbonation, and finishes semi-dy

O- A pretty good DIPA, not too adventurous The sweetness is a little more than I would like for the style and made it less drinkable than other DIPAs. Some light bitterness on the finish, but not enough to cut the sweetness..

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Photo of BastardKing24
3.74/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle says "EXP 10-30-2014, and its 8-10-2014. I guess it is still fresh by this date? Perhaps I will find out as this beer was hard to find, and I don't know how long its been at the store.

Pours a clear light orange color with a 2 finger white head that lasts 30 secs. Looks decent by my standards. 4.0

Smell is of ripe and over ripe grapefruit, orange, and lemon. Light hop presence , but still, it seems mostly citrusy. Nice biscuit malt smell as well. 3.75

Taste is kind of bland, but it is a nice balanced malt vs hop flavor. Rather generic though.
Much better than pyramid outburst. But that's not saying much. 3.5

Feel is spot on, can't really get more or less carbed, without making a mistake. 4.0

Overall this is not the best IPA I have had at the tune of 8%, but it is one of the better offerings where I picked it up. Decent flavor and kick, balanced palate. 4.0

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the bomber into a small snifter.
Pours medium clear amber with minimal head.
Smells good, not particularly hoppy in the aroma.
Tastes very much west coast with malt very present and lots of hop bitterness. Hops serve primarily to provide bitterness.
Mouthfeel is malty and a touch sweet.
All in all, a classic west coast style pale ale.

 348 characters

Photo of mr-jj
3.76/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From 8/31/15. Poured into an IPA glass from a 22 oz. bomber.

Color is clear gold with a large white head. Decent lacing and retention. Aroma is piney hops, maybe a bit of citrus, with some roasted malt. Flavor is more bitter than I expected from the aroma, but it balances the malt backbone quite well. Mouthfeel is medium-full with moderate carbonation. Overall, a very good DIPA.

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Photo of Spikester
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

New label celebrating 50 years of conservation at Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge.
Pours clear light amber orange with three fingers of dense white head that has staying power and leaves strong lacing all the way to the bottom. Smell is piney hops with a good amount of bready malts.
Taste the hops are strong up front somewhat dank and resinous. The malts are a bit behind matching or subduing the resinous qualities. Mouthfeel is fine with just enough carbonation and a long dry bitter finish.
Overall I was hoping for a bigger Pelican IPA. Well it is bigger for sure but the hop bitterness pegs my hop limiter. I like more spread to my hop flavors and this one just came on with the pine notes and little else.

 721 characters

Photo of SanFranJake
3.84/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark golden color with a dirty white head.
Nice crisp taste but not a DIPA flavor that I'm used to. I'm not able to tell you one hop profile over another, but this one isn't familiar to me...and that's okay.
The head, while rapidly dissipating, leaves a sticky coating of lacing with each enjoyable sip.
Much like the hop profile, the after taste is one that I'm not familiar with. Which too is okay.
All in all, glad I was finally able to try a Pelican beer. Might not buy this one again with so many other good DIPA's to be had, but a solid tick.

 564 characters

Photo of remingtonsteele1987
3.87/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pouring a 22oz into a snifter, you get a deep amber and slightly opaque color, along with a tan and foamy one finger head. Nice bright orange and grapefruit nose along with a hint of resin. Subtle vanilla sweetness on the tip of your tongue with a good amount of orange and grapefruit along with a lingering hop aftertaste. Texture wise, it's medium bodied with a creaming feel.

 381 characters

Photo of FFreak
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Costco purchase at $5.49 for 22 oz bomber. Poured into teku glass. Clear golden-orange with ample off-white head that dissipates quickly leaving spotty lacing. Tons of caramel maltiness in the aroma with some hints of pine, resin and marmalade. Taste follows with piney, resiny, dank and malty tones, followed by caramel candy and ample bitterness. Mouth is medium-to-full bodied, with medium carbonation, and a silky finish. Overall, a big, malty, dank, medium-bodied double IPA - what I would consider a good example of the west coast style

 549 characters

Photo of Bitterbill
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange gold with one solid head of long lasting foam.

The smell and taste is of a solid malty backbone and tropical fruity hops. Balance is nicely done with a very smooth mouthfeel. Delicious.

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Photo of draheim
3.99/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz into a tulip. Pours a slightly hazy copper color w/ a big fluffy white head, spotty lace.

Aroma is big sticky hop resin: grapefruit, pine, some tropical fruits.

Taste is likewise chewy resinous hops layered over a canvas of pale biscuity malt. Just a touch of detectable booze.

Mouthfeel is balanced and medium-bodied; clearly the hop bill is elevated to counter the big hop presence.

Overall a really solid, straightforward, clean imperial IPA. Enjoyable.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium coppery amber with a fine one finger off-white head with great retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, piney and citrus hops, hint of dankness. Flavor follows with a nice caramel malt base supporting resinous piney and citrus hops. Lingering mildly herbal hop bitterness in the finish. Medium bodied with light creaminess and active carbonation, great mouth feel. A classic Northwest style IPA with a good substancial hop component that delivers flavor and assertive bitterness. Nothing really ground breaking, but tastes great on this 80 degree day when I really needed a strong, flavorful, quality IIPA. Well done.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours amber with a large head.
Aroma of pine, grapefruit, sweet clean malt, some soft pineapple.
Aggressively hoppy flavours, lots of piny, resinous notes and a fair bit of clean malt underneath.

 195 characters

Photo of gandres
4.11/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From tap to glass at the Brewery at Cape Kiwanda, Pacific City, OR
Appearance: Amber, hazy, big white foam
Aroma: very fragrant, hoppy
Taste: very bitter
Mouthfeel: lively carbonation
Overall: very good beer ok to repeat and look for, better than umbrella
Drank: May 6, 2016

 279 characters

Photo of Jeffsta1
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Beautiful unfiltered golden/tan ale, pretty white head, fine foam.

Very bitter on the approach, hints of peach and resin, then a long, piney, bitter finish.

Moderately rich mouthfeel, well integrated with the carbonation. A quality beverage.

Bracingly bitter though. BIT-TER. It's good, but how much of it do you want to drink in a sitting? Me: 8 oz. is fine. Dunno how many IBUs it is, but in terms of perception, this is a harder beer than (say) Dogfish Head 90.

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Photo of Dogbrick
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to cmaruschak for sharing. The beer is a clear dark orange color with a medium ivory colored head with decent retention. Patchy lacing. Citrusy hops aroma that also has a good amount of sugary sweet malt. Rich and smooth body with a nice citrus and hops flavor. Strong malt base as well, plus some pine notes. The finish is hoppy at first with a lingering aftertaste of sweet malt and spices. Really good, but honestly did not impress me as much as the India Pelican Ale.

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Photo of edmundfitzoil
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pelican Imperial IPA cask conditioned at the Rose and Raindrop in Portland and poured into an imperial pint glass.

The beer was served a cloudy brown/amber with a small head of big bubbles that retained throughout the first half of the beer. The nose was all hoppiness. The taste was again largely hoppy, but it was well balanced with a maltiness. A full bodied brew, with a very slight alcohol bite at the end. This one was insanely drinkable, and a true treat when pulled from the cask.

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Photo of jtfest
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This seasonal offering was sampled at the brewery on the Oregon coast -- so good, I brought home a growler.

It pours with a big, creamy white/tan head that leaves a thick lacing on the glass. With a beautiful orange/amber color, the first thing that hits your senses is the aroma -- pure hops, big and powerful. The full, creamy mouthfeel carries a well balanced flavor that is surprisingly lacking in bitterness and actually somewhat light -- until the aftertaste, when the hop bitterness takes hold and grows. Never biting, however, it is a smooth, clean drinking brew that I could enjoy a lot of. The growler may have made it home with me, but it is unlikely to survive for long.

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Imperial Pelican Ale from Pelican Pub & Brewery
3.87 out of 5 based on 128 ratings.
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