Little Thumper Ale | The Defiant Brewing Company

very good
19 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
The Defiant Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by maddogruss on 11-10-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 31
Reviews by dherling:
Photo of dherling
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Neil, the brewer, says this is a single malt, single hop beer. It's not malty enough to be an APA, not bitter enough to be an IPA, sort of a hybrid and just short of both. Looks lovely, golden with a big head and even bigger lacing. The beer is aged below freezing for a month for a tighter carbonation and smoother head. The nose is like smearing the pith of a white grapefruit up your nostrils. When I tasted it I swore I was drinking white grapefruit juice, not the shitty concentrate kind, the good fresh squeezed kind. The lovely thing about it is that there's some good malt to back it up, so the balance is spot on making this immensely drinkable.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of JC333
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of TheycallmeTim
3.28/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a cask growler into a tulip pint.

A--Bright yellow, lemony body with a ring of salmon roe on the top. Light and cloudy, a little lighter than I'd expect.

S--Huh. This is English? Or English-style at least? It almost has a Belgian nose. No pepperiness or spice, but there are some definite wet hay and grass notes here. I also pick up a background of something herbal. It's not funky, just really, really straw-like. Like a saison with English yeast or something.

T--Again, a little bit of a mystery. I guess these are English Goldings, but they taste more like Styrian Goldings to me--sharp straw flavors followed by a bright mintiness on the finish. Middle is boring--a little crackery, a little blah.

M--Mouthfeel gets saved because it's cask. Nice and creamy. Drinkability? Yeah, I guess. Didn't really impress on its own, and didn't pair real great with beef stew, with which this style should be a natural.

A better malt backbone would make the hops shine, I think.

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Photo of zillo043068
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of Gmann
3.77/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear straw color with a small wispy white head. The aroma is light and fruity. Some lemon and apricot scents, crackery malt, and grassy hop; a touch grainy. An apricot/citrus hop hits off the bat, followed by a light crackery malt and bitter grassy hops. Some hay and grain characteristics are present. The feel is quite light and summery, the malt takes a back seat in this one. A nice and very drinkable brew. This would be a fantastic summer brew. Nice hop presence.

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Photo of scootny
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A cloudy orange gold with a white fluffy head. Smell is grassy and citrusy with an earthy backbone. Malt is sweet with light caramelnotes. Taste follows the nose but with a very dry graininess in the finish with a lingering breadiness an hop oily grapefruit. Feel is light and gently carbonated with a light fluffy softness. Quite drinkable as my growler is gone in an instant.

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Photo of Skibum211
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of metter98
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin white head that died down and left some bubbles on the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of fruity yeast, bready malts and grassy hops in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the taste; the fruity flavors stand out in particular and there are also some notes of butter.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is easy to drink and is quite flavorful for the style.

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Photo of plaid75
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewery.

Poured a hazy medium straw hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell featured a touch of sourness, perhaps some wheat spice and a grassy hop.

The taste consisted of a light grainy malt, lemon, and a grassy hop.

The mouthfeel was toward the lighter side of the style.

Overall a tasty and very quaffable ale.

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Photo of maddogruss
4.8/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Second of Neil Acer's Horsemen of the Apocalypse, this pale ale is awesome. Brewed with Kent Goldings hops and grapefruit, this single malt brings you the none too overpowering balance of hops and grapefruit. The grapefruit aftertaste is unbelievable: both pungent and sweet.

Beatifully golden color with a thick white head that allows the grapefruit aroma to rise up to the top of the beer. Smoothe taste with a delectable grapefruit aftertaste. Pleasant mouthfeel; not too think, not too thin. A very drinkable beer as all are at Defiant.

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Photo of CBPAS
1.5/5  rDev -60.6%

Photo of tobelerone
3.16/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at the brewery. Nearly clear, yellow bodied beer with a decent cap of foamy white head that settles slowly. Decent lacing sticks to the glass. Aroma is fairly mild; pale malt and some grassy, floral hops. A touch earthy, almost dirty.

The flavor is on the bland side; again there is a dry, crackery pale malt taste with mild sweetness, followed by earthy and floral hops that are pretty subtle. Low overall bitterness, lacks an assertive character or any particularly distinguishing flavors.

Medium-light body, moderate carbonation, smooth enough in the mouth. Drinks fairly easily but not exactly a refresher. I’m afraid this one was a bit forgettable for me. A decent session-style ale but fails to make much of an impression; additionally, the earthy, dirty aspect muddles things a bit and takes away from what could have been a cleaner drinking experience. Not the best offering in my limited experience with this brewery.

 938 characters

Photo of bob727
5/5  rDev +31.2%

Photo of EPseja
4.52/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I'm calling this review for a growler even though it was bottled in a 22ozer straight from the tank last night.

Served in a pint glass at just below cellar temperature.

A - Honey golden in color with a light haze and soapy bubbled white head. Retention isn't very good, but then again, given it's serving type, that's normal. Lacing, however, is spot on and surrounds the entire glass.

S - Sweet, crisp English hops - straight Goldings if I'm remembering what Neill told me. Nice, fresh bready Maris Otter malt backbone with tremendous presence. Wonderfully enjoyable!

T - Biscuity malts right up front - just sweet enough to work with the hops that come straight afterwards. The hop profile is simple, and provides just the right amount of bitterness to balance the malts. Finish is very tasty, with a pleasant, almost citrusy aftertaste.

M - Carbonation is a bit low, but that's just a byproduct of a too-slow bottle fill and capping. From what I remember last time I had it straight from the tank, it was smooth a silk and super creamy. The swallow is so so easy and leaves you wanting more!

D - This beer is ridiculously drinkable. Simple, but so well balanced that the synergy between the single malt and single hop combines to produce a much more complex product. A supreme session beer, and a Neill Acer signature offering.

 1,349 characters

Photo of malfunxion
3/5  rDev -21.3%

Photo of tgbljb
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served directly from the tank at the brewery.
Served as a hazy medium amber beer with modest white puffy head.
Smel is lightly malty with a nice citrus background.
Taste is of light sweet caramel blended with a firm grapefruit texture.
Light and refreshing in the mouth with pleasant taste retention.
Great drinkabililty. Perfect session beer.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a straw yellow. Smells like dried straw too! Slight citrus. When I smell this, I just think about farms and fields and butterflies and stepping in cow patties. Actually I dontctjonk about butterflies or cow parties at all. Flavor is slightly cereal sweet. Grain is there. Grass too. Slick smooth feel. Pretty easy to drink despite the earthy tones.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the brewery. Served in a mug. Pours a translucent orange with a frothy, half inch, bright white head. Nose expresses a buttery quality and a faint, biscuity, sweet, slightly skunky character. Taste consistent with nose, with the addition of a slight citrus presence and pleasant, light malt bready/grainy finish that lingers between quaffs. Mouthfeel was light and lively and refreshing. All and all easy drinking and sessionable. I'd love the opportunity to try this on cask.

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Photo of Darkhorse09
3.13/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewery, 10 oz ish mug.

Light yellow, slightly cloudy color. Small head, that left a decent lace on the mug. Nothing special.

Nose was also not that appreciable. pale malts, maybe just a little spice?

Odd palate. I was expecting a classic pale ale flavor, yet this leans more toward a belgian. Just a bit sour, sweet and just a touch of hops. Needs more hop flavor!

Very light, near watery mouthfeel.

Drinkability was good, very easily quaffable. Overall, I am not that impressed.

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Photo of cbl2
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11/16/2006 $7.50 Growler 5.00% No best by date.


Poured fresh from the tap. A hard pour yields a slightly hazy yellow/brown topped by 2 inches of soapy looking white head that settles slowly and leaves an intense lacing.


A nice biscuity malt coupled with sweet, yet bitter grapefruit aroma.


This super smooth and creamy ale has session beer written all over it. Biscuity malts that are just slightly sweet are coupled with a mild grapefruit bitterness, that just hints at a touch of faint hops.

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Photo of cosmo4u
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of BeerdedEric
3.03/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light straw golden yellow with a white head that faded quickly into a ring around the glass. Some noticeable carbonation.

I get a grainy cereal aroma with some slight grassy notes. Nothing too over the top.

Crisp clean taste that reminds me of a lager. Cereal, buscuity grainy malts show up right away with a hint of bitter hops to finish it off.

Light body, definitely session-able, light carbonation. It feels okay.

This is a simple beer. Almost like a light beer made by a craft brewery. It's nice to have a lighter beer to turn to for people who are trying to get into craft. Not necessarily a beer I would drink but it's not a complete failure to me.

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Photo of TongoRad
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nicely carbonated- especially for a growler fill- the color is a hazy apricot amber with a tall three finger finely bubbled head that lasts quite a while.

Aroma is a wonderful blend of biscuity malt and grassy/floral hops. There are hints of fresh figs and citrus peel in the background. Strangely enough, a vigorous swirl releases an altogether different facet of the aroma of berries and cream...that eventually gives way to the initial impression.

The palate is slanted towards the bitter end, but still nicely balanced. The biscuity malt dominates but some of the fruity and floral elements are there as well. The finish just goes on forever with the bitterness, citrus peel, and toasty malt.

This just rules as a session beer, it has enough going for it to keep your interest after quite a few.

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Photo of petermethot
3/5  rDev -21.3%

Photo of sleazo
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A_Slightly hazy. The liquid itself is straw yellow which lies underneath a fluffy head.

S_Rather mild with light earthy and grassy hops dominating.

T_So much stronger than the smell. Huge flavour with grassy hops dominating up front. The middle gives some lightly toasted grain in the vein of hay. Big hit of grapefruit at the end. Mostly dry and hoppy with a mild sweetness to balance the full act.

M_Lighter body with a mid range carbonation.

D_Listed at 3.8% this drinks much more powerful. The flavour here is through the roof. A sessioner in the true sense of the word.

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Little Thumper Ale from The Defiant Brewing Company
3.81 out of 5 based on 31 ratings.
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