India Pale Ale (2012- ) | Shepherd Neame Ltd

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India Pale Ale (2012- )India Pale Ale (2012- )

Brewed by:
Shepherd Neame Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by StJamesGate on 11-09-2012

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Reviews: 18 | Ratings: 62
Photo of Ant777uk
1.87/5  rDev -45.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

Used to be a Belgian Tripel fan, now loving the IPA's...looking forward to this...

Head goes down quite fast, deep red ruby colour...

Aroma is a bit overtly malty, not that much hops and citrus or apricot coming through...

Fairly good balance of flavor, though much too heavy and dubbel like for an IPA...not the best example...and not a beer a would buy again...

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Photo of doktorhops
3.06/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Well, well, well, well... (well) what do we have here from Shepherd Neame, aka “The Other SN” or “Not Sierra Nevada But Its English Cousin”... an India Pale Ale with a fancy old school label that was first introduced in 2012 - how’s that for anachronism from Britain’s oldest brewery? Pretty good I say. Anyway what I’m expecting from this English style IPA (as opposed to the now default American style) is a malty forward ale with what I hope are English driven hop flavours such as: Earthy/floral and if we’re lucky - tea leaf characters... well here goes something.

Poured from a 500ml bottle into nonic pint.

A: Presents a clear spot-on SAE/ECE amber (think turn signals on a car) body with a decent tight 1 cm Ecru head, which dissolves slowly to leave a thin lace cover on top. A decent head for an English beer to be sure. 8/10.

S: Aroma is a mixed bag - strangely has the aroma of Gin up front followed by sweet toffee candy malt, a grainy centre and a hint of light earthy floral hops in the background. Nothing leaps out at you, just a pubish (like that of a pub, mind out of the gutter you) English IPA “Move along sonny” *in my best Pommy cop accent*. 6/10.

T: Sweet toffee/caramel malts are almost in your face but not quite, the mid palate is a bit ‘meh’ there’s not much going on past the malt, finishes with a slight medicinal herb bitterness. The whole flavour profile could do with an added hop character - something more floral or tea-like, as it is there’s nothing exciting enough to warrant a second purchase [wow I’m really getting snobbish with my beer recommendations these days]. 6/10.

M: Mid to light bodied, a tad watery for the style, with a light English pub carbonation - TL;DR Body weak, fizz good. 6/10.

D: Well it started out good with the appearance... too bad that’s the lowest weighing in my scores... otherwise TOSN* has done little to impress this almost outright beer snob, aka me [now]. Which is a shame because I usually enjoy TOSN brews, just felt a bit short changed by this soulless cash-grab of a brew [wow I’m really becoming a complete cynic these days]. Recommendation: Get Spitfire instead. Spitfire is great. 6/10.

Food match: If-I-had-a-son-I-would-name-him Stew.

*Read my introduction ppl.

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Photo of heygeebee
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

One of those beers where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. All biscuit malts, earthy hops, and, for a bottle, well done low-ish carbonation to fill the body out nicely.
Standout? No...
Beer geek territory? No....
Good beer? Yes.....

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Photo of FLima
3.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Amber copper color with a thin off-white head with short retention.
Aroma with notes of English earthy and tangy hops, distant grapefruit citrusy, caramel malts, nuts and lemon drops.
Similarly, flavor with notes of English earthy and tangy hops, lemon, grass, ginger, some resin and grapefruit, sulfur, slightly toasted and nutty malts, spices, flowers and tea bags. Fairly attenuated.
I like the fact that some English beers seem to mutate during your sips. Dry and bitter aftertaste.
Light body with appropriate carbonation. A bit creamy.
Refreshing and relatively easy to drink English IPA. Quite traditional, very English and with a good deal of Fuggle hops.

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Photo of Tapioju
2.6/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Do I sense minerals, even soap, in the taste? Weird - or maybe I just have used to enjoy different hop profiles. From the tap, this one, so the reason might ne there, too. People have described the taste as nutty, with a nice malt body. Maybe so, but it might just not be my cup of tea. Bitterness and aesthetics are ok.

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Photo of Lemreway16
3.95/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shepherd Neame have created some of the finest beers and ales in England so obviously personal taste dictates a pecking order. Excellent smell and as with all their beers a good looker. If I have a reason to rate it lower that Spitfire, Early Bird et al it is that it is probably too strong. In my opinion English Ale and Beer is at it best in taste and flavour at between 3.5 & 5%. This is a specialist beer rather than a refreshing hoppy/malty IPA.

 454 characters

Photo of interzen
3.52/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml poured into a pint glass

Look: Deep, coppery red-brown with no trace of haze or sediment. Good fingers-width of white head which drops down to a foam cap over time. Some lacing left behind, but nothing extensive. Not massively fizzy.

Smell: This is definitely an English-style IPA, no doubt about it - hops are well in the background and the main smell is one of seet, roasted malts and a hint of nuttiness. This isn't the sort of thing that's going to assault your olfactory system so you're going to have to try pretty hard to discern anything other than the 'basics'.

Taste: Again, more malts with a light hoppiness which sticks around long after the malt flavours have faded away. On top of that, there's some fruitiness and nuttiness which overlays the predominantly bitter flavours. Overall, fairly bitter and on a par with similar British beers.

Feel: Medium body and bitter from start to finish. At 6.1% there's surprisingly little alcohol to be tasted or felt.

Overall: A bit 'meh' - as a supermarket IPA it does the job since it's pretty easy to get hold of. Along similar lines, this is probably about as 'traditional' a British-style IPA as you're likely to find. That being said, there are better examples of the style out there and they're not the sole preserve of the trendy craft breweries either. A good 'default' pint but nothing much to write home about.

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Photo of flyingpig
3.32/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle from Tesco (£2.39):
Caramel amber & a thin, bubbly head that is an off-white colour that turns to a very patchy lacing after a few seconds. Clear with some small bubbles rising to the surface.

Light malts, some caramel makes itself known soon after along with some earthy malts and English hops with a slightly nutty aroma rounding things off. The beer is quite subdued on the nose & fairly basic.

Earthy malts and light hops that features some sweetness from a little butterscotch and some caramel too. There is a bitter taste throughout with strong malts & a part fruity, part nutty taste.

Medium to full bodied, smooth & slightly nutty with medium carbonation and a touch of spice on the palate. The alcohol is fairly well hidden and the beer is a bitter one from start to finish.

Traditional tasting beer as you would expect from such an old recipe. Not a bad taste but not that exciting either. It was drinkable but it's not one I'd pick up again.

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Photo of dcmchew
4.15/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours amber-dark orange, one finger head, low(ish) retention.
Smells of toasted malts, fruity and midly hoppy.
Mildly sweet toasted malts, close to caramel, dark biscuits. There's a light fruitiness, mostly a hop-induced citrus, some apricot, low peach and faint raisins. There's a mild nuttiness, quite a spicy character but a bigger earthy feel throughout. Hops are nice and leafy, reminding of dry tobacco and citrus peel, with a nice bitterness lingering in the aftertaste, but darker, not fresh as in other English IPAs. A nice showing of the Fuggles hops.
The body is chewy, going to creamy, with just enough carbonation. Perfect for a session beer, although it has quite a rough and dry aftertaste.
Great example, high grades.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

500ml Bottle: BBD Jan 2014, poured into a UK pint sleeve on 27 Aug 2013.

Really took to this brew.

Looked fine, orange hue to it's amber/gold body, on top a full and lasting head.

Hoppy aroma, both spicy and fruity, with a mild malt ester in the nose also.

The taste is hop bitter, but not dry, the malts rearing their heads to make this a fairly sweet IPA compared to most: the hops however do rule the taste.

Nice body depth and the 6.1% ABV suited the beer well: overall a very pleasant beer and a lot better than I expected (some of Shepherd Neame's bottled brews have been poor to say the least)

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Photo of Mountainmanbrewing
3.05/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

This IPA poured as a clean copper/amber colour and formed a decent creamy off-white head.
Very light aroma of grass and subtle faint citrus.

Tastes of light caramel malt with a grassy hop character and a dry finish. Nicely attenuated, with some subtle candy flavours and a restrained, earthy bitterness. The mouthfeel is smooth with a pleasant level of carbonation.

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Photo of Hoppsbabo
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Amber.

S: A stocky, almost vegetable like stockiness. Hoppy but nothing fragrant. Citrus as it warms.

T: Ooh, aggressive. It's bitter but not hoppy fragrant. Has a bit of caramel and hints of that classic English gingery, prickly, butterscotchness. There's a bit of amonia too. As it warms I get some earthiness and also some cardboard. Not a lot of malty fruit and just hint of citrus. Gets better as it warms but I wouldn't go as far as to say it's nice.

O: Didn't enjoy this beer at all.

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Photo of EmperorBevis
3.25/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottled and coupled with a double stout as part of a premium (price mainly) ale range in Tesco
It looks the part with its bottle and Pours a golden body with decent enough white head
But the aroma belays a distinct lack of hops
& very little flavour

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Photo of wl0307
3.69/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Coming in a 500ml brown bottle, at 6.1%abv. only; BB 04/2014, served cool in a straight imperial pint glass.

Appearance: pours a clear, light chestnut brown colour, coming with a light beige foamy head retreating fast to a thin blanket, on top of a mixture of large and tiny fizziness.
Smell: spicy and faintly earthy hops, toffee-ish and semi-nutty malts, edged by a wee touch of prunes and fruit esters; given a good swirl, more pronounced nutty malts come forward. Overall, the hop content comes actually milder than the maltiness, always with a sound level of acidity aside. Interesting.
Taste: quite effervescent initially, the foretaste is full-bodied malty yet without too much sweetness (signs of a decent level of attenuation), immediately contrasted by an uplifting flavour of earthy-grassy bitterness, toffee-ish & tea-ish undertones, and mildly chewy tannins; the finish has a bit more spicy notes and a lingering, dry-ish herbal/earthy bitterness to linger nicely.
Mouthfeel & Overall: lightly carbonated, smooth on the palate, moderately flavoured with a good malt backbone and a moderate level of hop bitterness, while hop flavour is not too assertive, either. All in all a decent product by Shepherd Neame, and I’d look forward to try the cask-conditioned version.

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Photo of thierrynantes
3.77/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Beer bottle (50 cl.) purchased from Bière & Chopes, and tasted in 2013.

Appearance : clear amber color, with white foam head (w nice thin bubbles).
Smell : fruity aroma.
Taste & mouthfeel : fruity malty and hoppy flavors, with bitterness finish.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style India Pale Ale.

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Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.56/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of March 2014. ABV stated as 6.1%. Picked up recently from Morrisons. Described on the label as a historic ale that is heavily hopped with Fuggles. I've been looking forward to trying this since I heard about it - SN have recreated an English IPA in a manner that is supposed to reflect the original style. I don't know if it's based on an old recipe, but the labelling has a traditional feel to it.

Poured into a tulip pint glass. A clear orange-amber colour with medium carbonation. Forms a decent head of creamy off-white foam that lasts for a few minutes before subsiding. Aroma of light hop notes with notes of white grape, melon, pear, grass, faint citrus and subtle spice. Underpinned by a hint of caramel malt and fruity yeast esters. A whisper of diacetyl in the background.

Tastes of light caramel malt with a grassy hop character and a dry finish. Notes of white grape, melon, grass/hay, spice, fruity ale yeast, faint caramel and stewed hops. Well-attenuated, with some subtle candy flavours and a mild hint of diacetyl in the background. A restrained, earthy bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and faintly spicy, with pleasant carbonation. Body is OK but a tad insubstantial. Somewhat astringent, with an aftertaste of bitter stewed hops, grass and faint fruity yeast esters.

A reasonable stab at an English IPA, and a shade better than much of SN's output. The hops are certainly on display, with a dominance of fruity, grassy notes in the aroma and flavour. The malt is rather weak and very much relegated backstage. The twinge of diacetyl is disappointing but not entirely surprising. The style is captured quite well, but it would be nice if the malt were more prominant. In addition, the appearance and body are OK but not outstanding. A fair effort from SN, and worth trying, but don't expect to be blown away.

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Photo of vinicole
3.61/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clear amber colour. Thin head. Looks appealing.
Gentle malt and hop aroma.
Caramel malt is obvious with a touch of hop. Fading tobacco and quite bitter.
Medium body. The ABV does it a favour.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.6/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Palest amber-gold with lumpy, creamy froth that fades fast but trails.
Fresh orange marmalade nose with some sugar cookie dough underneath - bright but simple.
Toasted peanuts, whole wheat crackers, dried apricots then tea, tobacco leaf and Seville orange rind hops - very Fuggle-y.
Stale Jaffa cake finish and lingering birch bark bitterness. Medium, slight chew, salty.

I've got SN pegged as resolutely mediocre, but hope rises anew to see historical recipes with throwback labels. Too pale, smells good, too toasty but serious IBUs: all together, a bit above the usual if not exactly compelling. Good effort - for them.

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India Pale Ale (2012- ) from Shepherd Neame Ltd
3.44 out of 5 based on 62 ratings.
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