Baird / Ishii / Stone Japanese Green Tea IPA | Stone Brewing

very good
1,396 Ratings
Baird / Ishii / Stone Japanese Green Tea IPABaird / Ishii / Stone Japanese Green Tea IPA

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our style of brewing has always been about taking chances. It’s an extension of our “what-if” mentality, wherein we ask ourselves what would happen if we did things differently in the brewhouse, such as fermenting with a different strain of yeast or, in the case of this beer, incorporating whole-leaf green tea imported from Japan. The answer, embodied in this IPA when we first released it in 2011, was something truly magnificent, delicious and, as proven by the reissued edition you hold in your hand in 2015, worth brewing again. But what if we changed it? Yes, it’s riskier to change something most people thought to be liquid perfection, including our two-time collaborators Bryan Baird of Japan’s Baird Brewing Company and Toshi Ishii, a former Stone brewer and the founder of Guam’s Ishii Brewing Co., but we’ve found that, when approached with cautious curiosity and logic-driven creativity, reward often follows such risk. So, in bringing this IPA back to life, we followed the same recipe developed four years ago, but exchanged Pacifica hops from New Zealand, a hop-growing region that was becoming popular in 2011, for Helga hops from Australia, an area with a burgeoning botanical scene right now. The result is an IPA that’s as bright, herbaceous and bitingly hoppy as the one that’s had our fans requesting its return ever since its depletion from store shelves, but with a modern, hop-driven twist that makes this second draft unique and tasty in its own right.

2011 version is 9.2%
2015 version is 10.1%

2011 used NZ pacifica hops
2015 used AU helga hops

Added by HopHead84 on 07-10-2011

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 465 | Ratings: 1,396
Photo of SensorySupernova
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Golden-copper with a low white head, moderate lacing.

Smell: Dank, resiny hops. Comparing this to Enjoy By, it’s more subdued and darker (hopefully that makes sense).

Taste: Up front there is pretty strong hop bitterness, into mild sweetness that nicely fades into green, grassy tea. The tea becomes clearer into the aftertaste, as the hops fade.

Mouthfeel: Pretty thick and mildly carbonated.

Overall: I was skeptical about IPA-tea going in, but it works well together. It’s not necessarily better than a lot of DIPAs, but the twist does set it apart from the crowd (without being bizarre).

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Photo of Kanger
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I absolutely love this beer. I loved it when I first tried in back in 2011 and I love this version as well.

Appearance: Golden, but with a lot of sediment. I’m guessing that is from the green tea.

Aroma: Herbal tea smell is at the forefront, but the fruity hops support it nicely.

Taste: This stuff is amazing. The green tea and IPA are perfectly combined. Almost like having green tea ice cream at the end of a Japanese meal. There is definitely a bit of a grassy after taste, but it’s very pleasant.

Mouthfeel: Smooth. Real smooth.

Overall: Dear Stone – please make more of this!

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Photo of AlpacaAlpaca
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As the beer settles, the green tea flavors unfold beautifully. I'm really surprised there aren't more green tea IPAs out there. From scent to sip, it's like a story of flavors.

My only criticism: The hop bite suits the green tea very very well, but it lingers bitterly a bit too long, and without enough malt to balance it.

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Photo of JDW4195
4.49/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The hops surprisingly don't overpower this one. Not much green tea flavor, maybe just a hint on the back end. A lot of honey flavor. Pretty good, and a high ABV.

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Photo of AngusOg
4.49/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Man, absolutely loving this. I'm a huge green tea fan, which probably helps. But I feel like the green tea integrates well with the hops. And this is a 10.1 abv imperial ipa? Because wow is the an easy drinker, entire bomber gone before the blink of an eye. Definitely thinking about picking up more of this, and for a ticker like me, thats saying alot.

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Photo of Tilly
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass, nice golden hazy color. Bright white head about one finger deep, it dissipates fairly quickly.
Aroma is malty, sweet and fruity.
Taste is amazing. Apricot, sweetness and a hint of orange. I get the green tea, but just. Some hopiness as well.
Mouth feel is clean with very little bitterness.
Another good beer by stone.

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Photo of hosehead83
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Cloudy orange-gold in color, with a nice, sturdy two-inch head of off-white foam.
Aroma-juicy citrus hops,faint tea leaf note.
Taste-Bold citrus hops and earthy tea leaf, citrus rind, faint lemon zest, toasted malt in the background. Very flavorfull and chock full of character. Every sip a bit different. Super-smooth for the high ABV. A hands down great brew with spicy Asian fare. More Wasabi anyone? A must try for all hop-heads or fans of Stone collaborations.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.46/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a bomber into one of my tulip glasses, this beer pours a mainly clear, but just slightly hazy/cloudy medium golden color with just a slight amber hue when held up to the light and has lots of little bubbles continuously rising to the beer's surface. has a nice, solid white head that is about 1/2 to 2/3 of an inch thick when poured that isn't interested in fading away. It does eventually decide to settle to a nice thick ring lining the inside of the glass, along with nice cluster swirls of foam on the beer's surface and very excellent lacing. Very good head retention here. Did I mention that? Herbal, piney and floral hop and tea aromas are strongly and pleasantly present. Has hints of toasted caramel malt sweetness upfront that gives way to green tea that then in turn gives way to pine and citrus floral hop bitterness. The way the tea and hop flavors compliment one another is quite exquisite as far as my palate is concerned! The bitterness is certainly there, but is not an overpowering aspect of this beer. Has a dry after taste that really linger on the palate. It also has a crisp, smooth, and frothy, almost creamy, slightly oily, full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. This one really coats the inside of my mouth and seems to have no plans of going anywhere for awhile. And that is just fine by me. Drinkablity is superb, especially for a beer that boasts 10.1 % ABV. I missed this one the first time around 4 years ago or so, and I am damn glad that Stone and friends decided to give this one a second go, albeit it with a few modifications from the original batch. A damn good beer here! Stone does it again!


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Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a chalice. 2015 version bottled on 01/09/15.

Appearance: Pours a bright golden orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. About one finger of white head which settles into a thin creamy layer. Leaves some decent lacing.

Smell: A very juicy and herbal hop forward aroma with big hints of citrus fruit and green tea. Citrus hop scent with hints of orange peel, grapefruit, lemon, pineapple, mango, and apricot. Also some piney and grassy hop hints. A very noticeable scent of the green tea comes through. Background hints of malt with subtle hints of grains, cracker, and yeast. A very good aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a very ripe, juicy, and herbal hop driven taste with big notes of citrus fruit and green tea. Upfront taste of citrus hops with juicy notes of grapefruit, orange peel, pineapple, lemon, mango, and apricot. Hop notes of pine resin and grass as well. Big taste of green tea that blends well with the hops increasing the herbal qualities. Soft pale malt background presence with notes of cracker, grains, and yeast. Very bitter and juicy. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very juicy and oily with a drying bitter finish.

Overall: A very good twist on Stone’s West Coast IPA. The green tea flavor is big and blends in nicely with the juicy and herbal hops.

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Photo of BeerAmbassador
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy orange color with a nice glow when held up to the light. Hoppy citrus aromas, more specifically grapefruit along with green tea and some other herbal notes. Very hoppy with a nice malt presence, after the hops start to subside, you start to taste the green tea, which is more assertive than I thought it would be. I also get a fair amount of herbal note on the palate, sort of mint and chervil combination. I really like this beer a lot, it definitely exceeded expectations for me and I might buy some more while it is still around. Definitely a unique spin on a standard DIPA. Oh and on that note, I didn't read the label very closely and thought it was a standard strength IPA even after drinking it. So the alcohol is hidden very well.

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Photo of gillagorilla
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz. bomber poured into a Burley Oak snifter (From notes when I had it on 2/18/15, bottled on 1/2/15 and enjoy by 4/915)

A: Golden copper color that is a gorgeous hue. Nice collar.
S: Crazy earthy with this intenseness to it. Some tannins in there, but mostly just really hoppy with a tinge of fruit to it.
T: Deliciously hoppy. Not a lot of green tea though. The green tea probably just smooths it all out and adds a bit of earthines. Just really damn good. Lingers like a green tea on the back of the throat.
M: Smooth and just a bit frothy.
O: So gosh darn good, but expensive at $8.99. I was really surprised that they brought this back out of nowhere with no warning. They had brewed this before I got into beer and this was one that I was sad to have missed.

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Photo of ajpadre
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is an awesome summer IPA. Stone couldn't have picked a better time to release it.

The nose is a typical IPA, herbs, pine needles.

But the initial taste is slight roasted barley, followed by a very light (at least for Stone's reputation) bitter hoppy flavor. The green tea is actually hard to find amongst the various hops used.

The green tea only slightly comes in on the back of the pallet, after the rest of the flavors have come and gone. The alcohol content is suprising, as a 9.2% ABV, it drinks like a 5%.

This will satisfy many pallets, between hop heads and lighter beer drinkers. Overall a great summer beer you can enjoy with a meal, or by the pool. And with the ABV, you'll only need one to start your night off right!

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Photo of matttttYCE
4.44/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Poured this one into my tulip glass. Moderate pour rate generates about a 2 finger high creamy white head that starts to subside right away. Lace is light-moderate. Color is a murky honey color.

Smell - Smell is actually really appealing to me. It smells like a mix of very nice crisp and moderately strong lemon citrus, grapefruit/other tropical fruit, floral/leafy notes (big surprise there with a tea IPA) and light green tea, some mint from the green tea, a bit of pine, resinous qualities, some sweetness or sweet malt, honey, just a bit of malt backbone/slight bread to play a supporting role while letting the tea and hops have the spotlight. Seems like the green tea aromas mix in really well with the aromatic hops used.

Taste - Taste is pretty much what I expected from the aroma. Green tea and slight minty flavors are on the lighter side, but still noticeable and very complimentary to the main flavors of lemon grass/citrus and grapefruit/mango/papaya flavors. Also in there is a some bitterness, pine, leafy notes, lighter malt backbone with decent sweetness and maybe some honey from the aroma. I actually really like this taste of this. It's got some pretty close hop qualities to some of my favorite DIPAs, but with the added twist of the green tea/light minty flavors.

Mouthfeel - Mouthfeel is very nice for an DIPA. Consistency is smooth (close to crisp but not quite), carbonation is light-creamy, body is on the lighter side of medium, and the finish is actually pretty quick, light, and crisp. Overall the mouth is lighter for a DIPA which I appreciate because it makes them much easier to drink multiples of. If I had more of these, I'd certainly be drinking another right after this one!

Overall - This one is really another home run in the Stone Collaboration series. Like I said above, I really wish I had more of these, but I'm just happy to have been able to get one (which happened to be the last one at my local BevMo). So I really can't complain. In my opinion this IPA couldn't have gotten much better, and I was expecting just a decent beer. This is definitely a unique beer and one that I think anyone who likes DIPAs should at least try!

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Photo of sweatervest27
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy orange into my whisky glencairn with a heavy looking, one finger head. There is some dainty lacing, think see-through white lingerie.

The smell is typical of west coast ipas with strong citrus notes and lemon grass. Not a lot of pine resin just refreshing awesomeness. I'm also picking up some general sweetness from the malt.

This collaboration is really coming together for me. It tastes like a finely crafted ipa with a slight Asian zing. It opens up with grapefruit, pineapple and cream. Heavy aeration really highlights the otherwise muted green tea flavors. The alcohol, at first, seems way too high but I must admit the booze harmonizes with the herbal and mint qualities quite splendidly.

Overall I really enjoyed this brew and I feel good knowing the proceeds go towards relief efforts. I also noticed a home town company donated the bottles so kudos to them. I'm all about integration of beer and social cause: a true collaboration on all levels.

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Photo of MADhombrewer
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle shared between my wife and I

Appearance- hazy, golden, orange. Little head. What is there is stark white. Not a lot of lacing. 4/5

Smell- Orange and citrus hop aroma. This is a good aroma. 4.5/5

Taste- Orange and citrus hop bitterness. Hefeweizen-esque. More bitterness than I expected. For a 9.2 abv beer, I don't taste much alcohol. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel- This is the most interesting part. I fully expected this to be super thin. Not at all. It has some legs to it. I also didn't know it was 9.2% abv. 4/5

Overall- I was prepared to have a non-interesting, thin, boring, green tea beer. That was not the case. It is a good, full bodied, Hefeweizen-esque beer. Great summer beer! 4.5/5.

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Photo of Krakistophales
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a very hazy honey color with minimal white head that disappears quickly but leaves a nice film up top

S: Plenty of piney and citrus hops at first, but quickly turns into a tropical fruit and honey sweetness, but the end of the sniff has that refreshing green tea grassy/earthy tone, and the grassy/earthy hops seem to interact with the tea

T: Right away I can taste the green tea. It might be because I drink lots of tea anyway, but the earthy, grassy, muddy, and nutty notes of the green tea are prevalent throughout the palate. However, combined with the tea in the beginning is a mild tropical fruit sweetness, then gradually recedes into a bitter, green tea and hops finish. Interesting, but in a great way.

O: I love quirky, conceptual stuff like this. An added bonus is that profits are for the japanese relief fund. I'm gunna go buy out Decicco's of these bottles. Excellent brew.

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Photo of Klym
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a stone nonic. Shared with Cavery.

A: A deeper golden body with a 1 finger white head that dies down to about 1cm and stays there. The most striking thing about the body is that there are floaties that stay entirely in place-- they don't move around at all. It makes the body look like a jelly, pretty bizarre, but interesting.

S: Major floral character to this, the most I've gotten from an IPA/DIPA. A little grass and buckwheat, and plenty of aromatic hops. This smells quite different and really great.

T: Tons of up front floral sweetness, almost like a flower-flavored jello. A nice roof-of-the-mouth hopburn comes in and greentea/buckwheat blooms out in a vapor like taste that simmers down with a hibiscus/honey sweetness. Absolutely no alcohol detectable for me, which is impressive given the ABV. Again, this is quite distinct from any DIPA I've had and I really enjoyed it.

M: Medium-heavy for a DIPA. At times an almost jelly like mouthfeel, but I thought it somehow complimented the beer well. Would probably be harder to knock too many of these back compared to most DIPAs, but for a single glass I thought the mouthfeel did the beer well.

O: I'm really sad that this is a special collaboration and not a year-round release. This DIPA was very different to me and captured huge floral character, far more than I've seen any other DIPA even touch. On top of that, they did a nice job of getting their focused ingredient, green tea, to come out in the flavor. The green tea came off very high quality and natural too, not like your typical sweetened up green powder or green tea flavored ice cream type thing. Loving this beer more than I expected to, hope I can get more to enjoy this again.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a very cloudy golden-orange color with a thin finger of frothy white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some light lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of lemon, grapefruit, and floral hops with some sweet lightly bready malt, green tea, and a bit of candi sugar.

T - Starts off with a mix of lemon and grapefruit hops with some bitterness with some sweet, lightly bready malts, and a bit of green tea. Through the middle, some floral and pine hops come through with some more bitterness and some more green tea flavor and a bit of sweet candi sugar. The finish is a mix of sweet candi sugar, citrus and tropical hops, bitterness, and green tea.

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

D - Very drinkable. Really nice hop profile from start to end with a good amount of bitterness throughout. I also really like the green tea flavor.

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Photo of beer2day
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from tasting notes

Hazy orange gold with 1 finger medium to dark cream head. Not much in the way of retention or lace. Heavy amount of sediment present.

Nose is green tea. Definitely green tea. Good amount of grapefruit and orange zest. Very nice.

Tea is even more present in the flavor. Again, nice mix of grapefruit and orange peel, but definite tea component. Adds a nice complexity to the finish. Well done, again.

Feel is heavy, but befits the strong abv and slows down the consumption rate.

Overall, well done and would love to see this done again.

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Photo of FUNKPhD
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've been waiting on this one for a little bit now, so was excited to finally get some.

Poured into a tulip, nice honey coloration all the way through, with a lot of floaties, similar to a snow globe. It gets a nice finger and a half head with good retention. Lots of hops, but the tea leaves are definitely there. The flavor is surprisingly green tea-ish, I wasn't expecting it to be the leader in taste. It didn't last long before hops came rushing through.

This was a rather refreshing, satisfying beer. That being said, caution needed to be taken to sip and enjoy, rather than gulp and consume.

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Photo of MaineBrewing
4.39/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A - poured a bright light gold with orange highlights, slight haze. One finger off white head after vigorous pour. Lots of legs and lacing.

S - beautiful bouquet of floral hop notes, almost savory sweet. Strong lemon with pine. I'm not sure if I get a tea smell but maybe that is the filling sweet smell I get. Fresh bready malt undertone. Very clean smelling, not supper dank but a more refined floral clean aroma, almost perfume ish.

T - taste is where the tea comes out, big upfront tea flavor that explodes through the palate and ends in a peppery lemony quenching hop character. Yeast character is different than other stone brews, more prevalent and less clean, not necessarily a bad thing just different. My palate quickly where's out to the peppery tea notes and it fades, allowing more of the sweet bready malt to come through, the floral notes from the aroma come forth a little, I get hints of lavender, juniper, and fragrant flowers rounding everything out.

M - this does not drink Iike a 10% brew. Very smooth, great mouthfeel overall. Just an enjoyable smooth execution.

O - I had some apprehension towards green tea in my IPA. I saw it was 10% and figured it would be a hop bomb with crazy flavor and bitterness so said what the hell. It's actually very refined, doesn't drink like 10% and even if it was 6-7% would still be great. The tea is a good peppery intense tea verse some sweet green tea that can get cloying. It does seem to Morph flavors as I go and turns more floral, makes it very interesting and enjoyable.

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Photo of RedSpecial1
4.39/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a cloudy, straw yellow with a gorgeous foamy white cloud-like head that lingers for a good while.
S: Excellent aroma of pine, citrus, and a hint of lemon. There's almost a sweetness to the aroma, as well as a slight yeast character.
T: A light malt sweetness up front, followed by an herbaceous character that could be due to the tea which lasts into a long finish along with a Meyer lemon-like taste.
M: Fairly light and crisp, especially for such a strong beer. Very refreshing.
O: This is a pretty tasty beer, very unique. The green tea component is complimentary to the style and plays well within the style characteristics that are typical to IPA's.

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Photo of omnigrits
4.39/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into a perfect pint.

A. Pale orange colour with lots of floaties. A decent one-finger head that subsides to a thin film and leaves very little lace.

S. Delicate and subtle straight from the off. Sweetly malty with hints of pine and citrus, and a definite whiff of Japanese tea. Not what you'd expect to work well in beer but it does, it really does. It's like putting your nose into a caddy of finest tea.

T. More of the same. It's such a refreshing change to find a full-flavoured DIPA that doesn't rip your tongue out with hop flavour and bitterness, but which caresses it, which wants to be friends with you instead of smack you in the face. The tea is less prominent here and there's a, I'm going to use that word again, delicate bitter finish to it.

M. A little on the thin side, even with all those floaties.

O. I like this beer a lot. Maybe it's the novelty factor, but mostly I think it's that a good DIPA can be made which is a pleasure to drink rather than a heroic effort.

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Photo of HardTarget
4.38/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Mild haze in a golden blond glass. Starts with a finger of white foam that drops to a thin cover that leaves a bit of lacing.

Smell: What it says on the tin; west coast hops with a green tea finish. The hops are citric, grapefruit with a sugary malt base.

Taste: An intense almost grassy green tea flavor, strong brew, condensed, with the slightly burning bitter hop oils and alcohol giving it an almost medicinal herb woody greenery aspect. Some tannins in the tea linger in the finish giving a slow puckering dryness that encourages the next adventurous sip.

Feel: Dry, hot, medium light body, heavy oily sap that slowly burns away.

Overall: Arigatō. A bit of a tonic, instead of being aged in a whiskey barrel this has been aged in an ancient tea pot used for centuries to brew locally grown green tea. Not for long, the hops are bright and fresh, but long enough to have a wonderful patina of silent contemplation. I'll get more, I hope they make more.

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Photo of nandemo1
4.37/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Would have liked to have tried this one sooner, but it JUST made it to the Richmond bottle shops a couple of days ago.

Poured a very hazy gold with a big finger and a half head. Head receded quickly and left minimal lacing on the glass. There are some floaters remaining in the bottle.

Smells lightly of citrus with a bit of a different sweetness, can't quite put my finger on it. Taste is again slightly citrusy, which is melded well with light bitterness (not sure if this is hop based or imparted by the tea) and the semi-sweet green tea flavor. Taste is spot-on what I wanted this beer to be, they nailed the Japanese style of not going overboard with sweetness or bitterness. Also, the alcohol is deceptively not present, so watch out.

Mouthfeel is definitely very light with a crisp dryness, making for a refreshing drink on a hot day.

I loved this beer, I wish it would hold up better so I could keep some around.

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Baird / Ishii / Stone Japanese Green Tea IPA from Stone Brewing
3.85 out of 5 based on 1,396 ratings.
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