Total Domination IPA | Ninkasi Brewing Company

378 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Ninkasi website:
"6.7% alc./vol. 65 ibus. Always available in 22 oz bottles, and on draft."

Added by grumpy on 08-23-2006

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Reviews: 378 | Ratings: 1,466
Photo of devilben02
4.26/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a sparkling amber-orange color, with a thick, billowy cream-colored head. The aroma is bursting with bold, citrusy combination of orange and grapefruit. The flavor is likewise jammed with grapefruit, with a juicy, lingering, pithy bitterness that is only partially balanced by a light caramel sweetness and some earthy undertones. The texture is light and smooth, yet the sticky, resinous hops don't readily fade away. Overall, although the flavor isn't a rot-your-molars kind of bitterness, it is certainly substantially hopped, resulting in a wonderfully bright and flavorful IPA.

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Photo of mynie
4.26/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big name for a medium-sized IPA. Pours fine but it smells pretty tame, like very light grapefruit hops and cereal malt.

Tastes great! The hop profile is rich and varied. It's west coast, of course--big grapefruit, orange, and pine. Very nicely balanced, too. It starts with sweet cereal malt, moves into variegated hops of several shades of green, and then finishes on a combination of yeasty biscuit dough and straight, bitter hops.

This is a very nice, very drinkable strong IPA. It's not quite to the level of Two Hearted, Ale Smith, or Alpha King, but it's still damn good.

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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours gorgeous brilliant gold under a 2” sudsy, clingy white foam collar.
S: Bready malt, resiny hops, floral, spice, light fruit, slight earthiness.
T: Malty, bready flavors ride a wave of creaminess through your mouth and then the hops start moving in to provide a balance leading to a lingering bitter finish. The hop flavors are layered with traces of fruit.
F: Carbonation is medium and body is medium high.
O: This is a big beer with solid, tonic level bitterness.

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Photo of Beertracker
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ninkasi's Total Domination IPA pours up sublime with a fluffy white head that neatly tops the slightly hazy tangerine yellow-orangish amber body. The intoxicating aroma is alive & dripping wet with pungent Pacific Northwest hops. Lots of lupilin! The overall character is very fruity (apricot, grapefruit, tangerine) with some piney (woody) notes in the background along with a constant light-moderate graininess with hints of caramel. Very nice overall. The flavor starts off with some candied apple toffee/caramel sweetness then the bitterness takes over to drive this baby home to a very clean, bittersweet, slightly warming, grassy finish. This is simply a delicious session IPA that reperesents Oregon well. Here's to the Goddess Ninkasi and her namesake brewery from Eugene!

CHEERS! Beertracker

*Taster's Note: A big thanks to Hoppiness for the bottle.

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Photo of TGates13
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I found that this beer was true to it's name. It was a Total Domination of the senses. It made my sense of smell and taste jump for joy. The first thing I noticed was that it produced a nice white and fluffy head and it was a nice amber color. The smell had lots of pine and earth notes with a hint of citrus.

On to the tasting part. I served the beer at around 40*. It was poured into a clean, not chilled pint glass. The first thing I noticed was the bitterness, it was not as bitter as most West Coast IPAs I have had before. It was actually a little sweeter. You could tell that multiple hops were used to brew this beer. I also noticed a nice piney and earthy taste that lived true to it's smell. The other thing I noticed was that it almost seemed as if orange rind was used. There was a bitter citrus aftertaste. This beer would go great with a spicy bowl of chili or Mexican food. It is not a heavy IPA and I thought to myself that there must be a difference between the water used in the Pacific Northwest and the Pacific Southwest. It was a much different IPA that I have ever had before.

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Photo of dfconnor
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Full-bodied flavor for a regular IPA. Heavier on the bittering hops and not so much on the aromatic hops. The emphasis was more on the malt foundation than hoppiness. A great change-up to the proliferation of overly hopped IPA offerings.

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Photo of grumpy
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pretty simple to describe this one - it's a glass of grapefruit juice. Not pink grapefruit like Oggi's HopWhompus, but white grapefruit, or yellow, or whatever a regular grapefruit is.

Pours a slightly cloudy, straw-copper color with a moderate white head that leaves little lace. Smells of grapefruit, tastes of grapefruit. Mouthfeel is medium, malts are muted by the high IBU. Not a big DIPA type beer, but really tasty. That is, if you like grapefruit juice.

Sidebar: The brewery is up and going (obviously!) and has established tap accounts around the region. Nothing is being bottled yet, and to my knowledge, the IPA is all that's available right now. I apologize to the proprietor if that's incorrect. Expansion of the beer production, and construction of a tasting room are in the works. If Total Domination is any indication, they are off to a good start.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aroma is strong and hoppy with a fruity underpinning that is surprisingly more pomme (apple/pear) than citrus and a firm hint of yeast. It pours a clear dark amber with a thick, though not persistent, white head that leaves some good lacing. Flavor is hoppy and woody, somewhat bitter, with a somewhat sweet undertone of pear and a hint of honey. Fizzy and smooth texture leaves a hoppy, fruity and slightly woody finish.

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Photo of Kaie
4.24/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really like this beer, however It's not my favorite IPA. But it is excellent to pick up a 6pack and crack a few open with some lunch or just to wet the whistle.

My favorite part about this beer actually is the smell. It smells VERY good. Effing amazing to be honest. Coincidentally it doesn't taste like it smells; but thats ok because the taste is still nice on its own accord.

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.24/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite NW IPAs on draught, but how does it do from the bottle? This 22 oz'er pours to a pint glass.

Label lists an ABV of 6.7%.

A: A hazy golden-copper color, capped with about 1-finger of creamy, near-white head, pockmarked with bubbles of varying sizes. Lace sticks in broad bands, marking each sip look like rings of a tree trunk. Some demerits for flecks of dark yeast sediment floating in the first half of the pour...bottle purchased recently at New Seasons (where there's alot of turnover), so I'd think this is fresh, just 'filtered' in the loosest of terms.

S: Love that aroma! Big juicy hops and a sticky sweet caramel maltiness. Doesn't rewrite the book on NW IPAs, just smells strong and blends sweet malts and citrus and evergreen hops in a magical way.

T: While I like this flavor, I can't help but compare it to the versions I've tasted on-tap. Still has a nice balance between toasty grain and robust green hops, yet the bittering here seems more pronounced - a pithy, medicinal sort of bitterness that announces its 'hoppiness' in a big way, yet detracts from the beer's sweeter side, which includes subtle fruits.

M: From a 'regular' IPA, this one has a big mouthfeel. Borderline 'full' feeling, this one loads up on sticky malts and clingy/cheek-drawing hop bittering. The tongue curls a little, a bitterness sits heavy on the middle and back of the tongue.

D: I'm a fan of the Ninkasi Brewing Company and have taken a liking to the stuff they're brewing. This gets a good score from me out of the bottle, but not as high a score as it would get from the tap. Has a full range of flavors and definitely appeals to the NorthWest/Hophead palate. Still, a good one from Ninkasi and one I'll continue to enjoy. And one of my 'go-to' brews...

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Photo of SitkaSteve
4.24/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

As many times as I have had this, I'm glad to remember to finally say something on this wonderful AIPA. My only qualms is probably the fact that its an AIPA and Ninkasi doesn't put bottling dates on any of their beers. Wish they did as it would probably get better ratings if people noticed the date. Somehow I think I heard something's in the works, well, anyways, sorry for that rabbit trail, but on with the beer.
Today this was poured into a pint glass.
The appearance was a nice looking hazy orange with a light carbonation to be seen rising at a moderate pace to fill a one finger rocky foamy white head. It mushroom caps a bit and moderately dissipated leaving a light ringy lacing sticking finely to the glass.
To me, the smell has a nice big burst of citrus/grapefruit with a mild spice on the back end.
The taste is moderately bittersweet with a lingering citrus aftertaste. Its quite dry in the finish.
The mouthfeel was about a light to medium on the body with a pretty good sessionability about it. The carbonation was good for the style and for me. It's bittersweetness rolls over my tongue nicely.
Overall, I say this was a pretty good AIPA that I always come back to and love with mushroom and anchovie pizza.

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Photo of jakon
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle purchased for $3.49 on 4-19-8 at West Union Albertsons.

There's an immediate blast of mango/pineapple upon opening. Very enticing aroma.

The taste shows a nice sharp grapefruit bitterness. The mango/pineapple doesn't really come through like I hoped it would, but this is very good. All hops with very little malt backbone.

The carbonation is average. The drinkability is off the charts. Very easy drinking brew. One of the best PNW IPA's I've ever had.

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Photo of 100floods
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale hue, something between yellow and gold, leaning more towards golden. Two finger whit head. Smells fresh, clean. Notes of grain and some hop flavors, coriander? There's definitely some belgian hop/spice thing going on, points for that. It's not as upfront, but sniff around a little and you'll find what I'm talking about. It's a little sweet, like a Belgian IPA, nice. Nice, smooth malt followed by some nice hop flavors. The malt gives a nice platform in which the hops take off from. Grapefruit, some pine flavors. The sweetness from the malt blankets the hops from being too present. This seems to give off a kind of spiced flavor. The aftertaste seems to resemble something close to that Belgian IPA aroma from earlier. This is an IPA after all. None of that DIPA business here. The choice of hops and malt seem familiar enough but just to the left of predictable. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of Lep
4.21/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle. Head was average if not less. Not overly fizzy as described by the bros. Poured very cold, probably 36F, which may have contributed.

Scent was mild, not what I expected for a dominating ipa. Again cold may have limite smell.

First taste. Definitely heavier than a mainstream beer but was mildly sweet followed by solidly hop bitter. My uneducated palette savored the hoppy bitter that seized the majority of my gustatory experience.

Further explorations yielded more of the same; an unequivocal hop bouquet but lacking in any real depth or complexity despite the claim of exceptional balance on the label.

All in all, a liquor store bottled stalwart that might fall at the taps of draught crafts if available. However, in Alaska, I will buy this beer again....

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4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazey Golden orange. Small whitish head that gives way to a pool of oils. Thin drippy spider wed laces.

Zesty citrus, Grapefruit, oranges, hoppy floral, and peppery resin. Small toasty background.

Big hops on the taste buds, like a big bite into a grapefruit. With a floral resinous taste beneath the citrus. Somewhat balanced by a bready caramel malt. Resinous piney aftertaste, big bitterness.

Med body, Full taste, smooth, mildly astringent, sticky, oily, a bit dry, with good carbonation.

A great drinkable big IPA that is balanced towards the hops, with great and varied qualities from them. Delicious. Could drink one anytime (although i prefer their Tricerahops, this is also a great IPA).

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Photo of cbarrett4
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bottle into Nonic. Tasted at least two dozen times from taps all over Portland. This is one of my go to brews!

A - Slightly hazy straw hue with a nice head and decent lace retention.

S - Fresh and green hops with a pine, citrus aroma, some hints of spice and earth.

T - The best part! Lots of fresh hops that just keep coming, but they're not overpowering or too tannic. The spice and citrus frames everything nicely.

M - Full bodied with good, creamy texture, smooth tannins, and balanced alcohol and acidity.

It doesn't get much better than this for standard NW IPA. Add to that the regularity of finding this on tap at even the most obscure bars in the Portland area and you have a consistent winner!

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a slightly hazy golden-orange with a finger of frothy off-white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of grapefruit, pineapple, tropical, citrus, and pine hops with some sweet caramel and biscuit malts.

T - Starts out with grapefruit, pineapple, orange, and citrus hops with some bitterness and some sweet caramel malts. Through the middle, some light pine hops come through with some more bitterness and some biscuit malts. The finish is a mix of grapefruit, pine, and grassy hops with some bitterness and some sweet biscuit malts.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a dry and bitter finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice hop profile with good bitterness and a good malt and hop balance.

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Photo of eaglepar3
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This is my first review, so bare with me. Just learning the ropes.

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Ninkasi pint glass bought at the local bottle shop in town.

A--Pours a orange-y color with a one finger head and a little bit of lacing. The second pour yielded a two finger head, perhaps a not so careful pour the second time.

S--Floral aromas overwhelm the nose, but citrus notes are also apparent.

T--I taste mostly citrus notes. It is a smooth drinking brew with a medium body.

M--It is a little bland in the mouth. Just carbonation is tasted, not so much depth to the beer.

D--This brew is very drinkable. I find myself picking this one up over and over. It is tried and true. I am just getting into IPAs, but I can't steer myself away from this one.

I hope more people hear about Ninkasi, they're a great brewery.

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Photo of Airyk12
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden copper with a big white foamy head.

Piney hops, a little breadiness, and a little bit of malts. A hint of fruitiness.

Piney hops dominate, with some citrus and the bready malts balancing out the bitterness. Bitter, but not overwhelmingly.

Well carbonated, with the bitterness dominating. Medium-light body.

A solid IPA, if not overwhelmingly unique. A strong representation of the style, with plenty of flavor to keep one interested. Drink a little chilled with a good ploughman's lunch on a warm day.

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Photo of Ryan011235
4.17/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter on 10/19/09

A - Deep shade of amber. Kind of murky. 1/2 inch head dissipates quickly leaving patchy bubbles on top. Spotty lacing throughout.

S - Pine & citrus (orange, grapefruit & hints of lemon). Floral notes as well. Sweet & biscuity malt aromas round out the nose. Very nice, overall.

T - Similar to the nose - big hop flavor & a restrained but stable malt backdrop. Pine & floral hops are more prevalent to taste than in the nose, with citrus notes taking a close second seat - some pineapple & grapefruit.

M - Moderate weight & body. Good carbonation that is not at all overbearing. Very mild slickness with a good bit of resiny grit.

D - I'm really liking this one. Thoroughly enjoyable from beginning to end. I'm digging these Ninkasi brews.

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Photo of gkunkle
4.17/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a transparent amber color with a white head. Head was only about 1/2 in tall, but it did leave nice lacing. Smells of citrus hops and a little pine as well. The taste leads off with the citrus hop then fades to the malty biscuit taste in the background. I thought the hops was very well balanced against the malts. Mouthfeel is good, has a medium body with a decent level or carbonation. Overall, this was a very solid IPA, I have not had many but this is one I will return to.

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Photo of AshleyKing
4.16/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one is variable: some bottles really still have that floral hoppy sweet malt that makes all adults happy in our abode. But sometimes it can just be the bitter shell of a beer than has sat in transport and warehouses too long to be a good sample of what it was when fresh. This is a really great IPA that can vary from bottle to bottle. On tap, in Anchorage, it is really quite above average.

So what were the Bros drinkin'?

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Photo of colts9016
4.16/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass at 42 degrees.

Appearance: A one finger ivory head that is foamy and creamy with some retention. The head is leaving some lacing on the glass. The color of the beer is medium amber color with orange highlights. The clarity of the beer is hazy. There is some yeast floating in the beer.

Nose: A very fragrant floral bouquet that is spicy, with orange, grapefruit, and pine aromas. The malt is toasty, subtle sweetness, and some yeasty hints in the background.

Taste: A very solid hop flavor that is fragrant, spicy floral bouquet, orange, grapefruit ester, and pine. The malt is toasty, yeasty, biscuit, and a subtle sweetness. There is some phenols and a touch of solvent.

The mouth feel is dry, astringent, and carbonated.

Overall: The body of the beer is medium and the finish is medium full. This is a rock solid IPA. A really good flavor solid malt backbone and very easy to drink .

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Photo of Donnie2112
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into an imperial pint glass

appearance: golden yellow body with fluffy off-white head, retains well and has a bit of sporadic lace.

smells: aromas of brown sugar under heavy layers of tangerine.

tastes: Very west coast style! Nice dry malts, makes me think of crackers or biscuits. The hops bring flavors of grapefruit, lemon rind and fresh rosemary. This is a really hop forward, bitter beer.

MF: snappy carbonation, smooth body, heavy hop astringence.

drinkability: It all depends, if you you are a hophead then this is highly drinkable, it has nice astringence and it doesn't feel "heavy." the perception of alcohol is rather limited.

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Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a 22oz bomber at Town N Country Market in SF for $4.99 and poured it into a pint glass.

A: Pours a fairly clean light amber/honey-like hue with a fat white head and a ton of lace coating my glass from start to finish.

S: Very earthy and somewhat swampy hop up front, burnt toast,fermented apricots and carmel/chocolate malt.

T: Really on point with the nose with a unique hop flavor that is real earthy and robust.

M: Medium bodied, sticky and well carbonated for the style but lacks that lingering bitterness that you get from a lot of other west coast IPA's.

D: Very drinkable - no problem posting up on these all night.

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Total Domination IPA from Ninkasi Brewing Company
3.66 out of 5 based on 1,466 ratings.
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