Rogue Ales

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IPA - English
Ranked #6
Ranked #7,387
3.99 | pDev: 10.78%
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States
Very Good
Notes: Formerly known as Brutal IPA, Brutal Bitter Ale, and Portland State IPA (2010).

An Imperial bitter with exotic traditional floor malts, citrusy, hoppy flavor and stupendous hop aroma. Rogue brewmaster John Maier describes his Brutal IPA as a cross between a Very Extra Special Bitter and an Indian Pale Ale. Hedonistic!

8 INGREDIENTS: 2-Row, Carawheat, C15 & Rogue Farms Dare™ & Risk™ Malts; Rogue Farms Alluvial™ Hops; Free Range Coastal Water & Pacman Yeast.

15° Plato / 46 IBU / 81 AA / 13° Lovibond
Reviews: 1,135 | Ratings: 2,340 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheSarge:
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TheSarge from Virginia

3.7/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a .5L glass, and the brew creates about a three finger rocky thick head, which is off white in color. The body is copper in color and mildly hazy.

The aroma is over ripe orange, some lemon, and a little perfumy.

Taste and feel wise, it's like eating a powdery grapefruit with some caramel mixed into the batch. The sweetness keeps the bitterness at bay. Feels medium in body, dries the palate, but refreshing at the same time.

Jan 05, 2012
More User Reviews:
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monkist from Hungary

4.88/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I love Rogue for being outstanding, creative and brave in their way of artistic brewing and this Brutal IPA is simply fantastic! They managed to create a combination in the taste of hops that is like no other, and reminds me of nothing alike so far!
Putting it simply, it tastes as if it had been aroma hopped with bittering hops... makes no sense? But it does! Bitterness is the aroma, and its not bitter at all... has it been dry hopped with bittering hops? Anything is possible at Rogue...
A very well done and balanced IPA, though it might not be in the all-time Top 10, it sure is a classic. Though not Brutal... or rather brutally good? Definitely.

Jun 16, 2017
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feloniousmonk from Minnesota

4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: a bright, but hazy, apricottish hue, with a thick, bubbling, off-white lace-leaving head. Aroma: absolutely bristling with pine, pineapple, grapefruit, all sorts of citrus, very spikey, alert and lively, seriously delirious!
On the palate, a monsoon ensues, a blast of brilliant bitterness, that fades a bit, yes, but returns with every sip. Texture is a treat, tangy, delicious, smooth, but tasty. Long, even eternal, finish. Ultimately, very dry, mouth watering, thirst quenching...yeah! It got me to thinking...this is the hophead's "lawnmower beer"! And me, I've got to live in an apartment! It's an "anytime" ale, I say!
The name protests too much. It's not too brutal, but then I'm used to, and I welcome, a barrage of hops on my tongue at anytime I wish.
The label reads "an Imperial style bitter" (aren't "bitters" UNbitter, such as ESBs?) using exotic traditional floor malts (huh?) Free Range Coastal Waters (okay, I'm lost, free range chicken I get, but free range water?) etc., etc.
No matter my confusion, it's a damned great ale, not shy at all with the hops, and loaded down with flavor. Happily consumed from a generous 22oz. bomber.

May 16, 2003
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beerdrifter from Germany

3.75/5  rDev -6%

Hazy copper-orange pour with a two finger white head with decent retention and lacing. The nose is rather subdued, malt forward, and somewhat vegetal with hints of pine, caramel, and grapefruit. The taste is unique with the same vegetal notes noticed in the nose. Hints of caramel, pine, grapefruit, tangerine, orange peel, grass, and brown bread. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with slightly fizzy carbonation, decent balance,, and a bitter, dry finish. Overall, I kind of get the IPA/ESB thing the brewer was aiming for, but the vegetal thing was a bit off-putting for me. Still a decent beer...

Aug 25, 2014
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sstackho from Canada

3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz purchased from LCBO in Grimsby. Nice, but slightly restrained hoppy aroma. First taste is rich, with nice fruity hops. Very nicely balanced. Pretty much exactly what I was hoping for. More fruitiness in the hops than most IPAs, but not lacking in overall hop bitterness. Interesting to read that the only hop used is Crystal from Oregon.

May 03, 2008
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LilBeerDoctor from New York

3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 8/16/08. Bottle. Pours a cloudy dull orange with a small light tan head. Aroma is quite hoppy- lots of citrus hops, slight fruitiness. Flavor is similar- citrus hops, apple skins, tropical fruits, sweet malt. Palate is a little weak. Sweet, fruity, tasty.
7/4/8/3/14 (3.6/5)

Dec 23, 2008
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bob727 from Florida

4/5  rDev +0.3%

Nov 22, 2011
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hopkrid from Florida

4/5  rDev +0.3%

Oct 14, 2013
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Buffett from Massachusetts

2.75/5  rDev -31.1%

Dec 09, 2013
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DaveR514 from Canada

4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

May 30, 2013
Photo of LukeVolky

4.04/5  rDev +1.3%

Aug 13, 2014
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OldFrothingSlosh from Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at the Innsbrook Alehouse during the 7/24 gathering.

Arrived in an imperial pint glass with a wonderfully thick and creamy 2" white head over top a cloudy orange body. Distinct rings of lace all the way down the glass. Very nice. Aromas are hoppy, to say the least. Grapefruit juice mixed in with some floral notes dominate the old schnoz. Flavor is delightfully enhanced by sticking it on the beer engine. A smooth, yet deceptively bitter flavor that was the perfect way to start my day of quaffing. Only token sweetness attempts to control the eventual hop landslide that occupies your palate. Finishes with a resinous hop oil spill. Very, very smooth and pretty full-bodied. Massively drinkable. A great experience that was enhanced by the conditioning.

Jul 26, 2004
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numenor1 from North Carolina

4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, muted orange with a creamy head that holds a decent collar. Smells a bit of lemons, pale malts and typical rogue yeast. Taste is up front sweet pale malts, a touch grainy, then it melds with citrusy, piny hops, with a fair bit of spice. Hops do carry the show, but for all the flavor there is very little bitterness. Dries out in the finish with rogue yeast and slight pith. Very nice beer, more of an IPA to me than an ESB (no typical musty fruitiness and too much carbonation), but altogether refreshing. I do particularly like rogue's yeast. Body is medium with fairly spritzy carbonation, working to nice effect. Eminently drinkable. I still prefer their american amber to this by a long shot.

Nov 08, 2005
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exlex from Australia

4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Cloudy amber with little to no head retention

Aroma: Sweet caramel with light floral hops

Taste: Perfectly balanced sweet malt and hop bitterness, with a great lingering finish

A fantastic beer, good sesionability. The high IBU's create a refreshing bitterness while the sweetness of the malts give it the body it needs to keep you coming back for more. Highly recommend this one.

Nov 06, 2008
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spycow from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -6%

Mar 09, 2013
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Skye1024 from Indiana

4/5  rDev +0.3%

Dec 27, 2011
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prisdefer from New York

4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Sep 28, 2012
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Trish from Florida

4/5  rDev +0.3%

May 16, 2013
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Paul_Apsley from Michigan

3.61/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jul 22, 2013
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Justindemino from New York

4.06/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

May 17, 2015
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far333 from Connecticut

3.62/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden color with an orange head. The head was nearly two inches high. Not sure if that's typical or if the barkeep gave me a bad pour. Didn't expect that for a cask beer. Nice lacing down the glass as I drank. Aroma of citrus and pine, followed by a hoppy flavor with citrus tones. Taste is very hoppy from start to finish, but not overpowering, even when served at the appropriate temperature for a cask beer. A pretty drinkable beer, but with aroma and flavor just a bit above average for my tastes, it's not one that I would choose often.

May 04, 2003
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beersarang from California

4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper orange with light tan head. Nice retention, slight chill haze.

Nice grapefruit/lemon hop aroma, hints of alcohol.

Pretty big beer from the beginning, strong malt background, good citrusy hop flavor and bite. Hop bitterness is very India pale ale esque, but this is just shy of being an IPA. Overall quite not overly complex, simple hop bitteness, malt background, and mildly noticeable alcohol. Overall well balanced. However I do feel that this shouldn't be classified as an ESB because it is not truly an English style ESB. It definitely tends more towards and American styled Pale or IPA because of it's citrus hop character.

Smooth and drinkable, coats palate and goes down easy.

Apr 28, 2005
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mmcave from Illinois

3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tumbler, the body is the color of a yellowy orange light amber. The head is pillowy, not as full as the fullest of head, but nice and clumpy. It leaves lacing in patchy clumpy lumps. At first sniff it is hard to separate the integral elements other than the noticeable hop presence. The Rogue yeast strain is definitely present, nestled between nice semi sweet malts and balanced with hoppy piny scents. Smells like grapefruit, caramel, citrus, pine and all the sort of standard stuff. The taste is much the same, with compacted sweet bitter combo very well balanced a little sticky, medium crispness and into a dry bitter finish. I'm not terribly familiar with the strong bitter style, but this is definitely a nice beer, not one I'd buy all the time or always have around, but a good beer all the same.

Oct 30, 2006
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ATPete from New Jersey

4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle

Pours a chill hazy orange brown color with a monster off white head. Slight astringency in the nose along with loads of fresh bitter hops, more reminiscent of a strong English IPA rather than an ESB... dare i say Imperial ESB? Theres "Imperial" everything else so why not. Fruity with a grassy/herbal character and a sturdy semi-sweet malt backing. Crisp with carbonation but with a slightly grainy texture. Decent balance is achieved throughout but this beer is obviously dominated by a hops, beautiful bitter hops. I would definitely revisit this beer.

Jan 21, 2009
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nathanmiller from New York

3.21/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Apr 12, 2015
Brutal from Rogue Ales
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 2340 ratings