Pick Axe IPA | Tommyknocker Brewery

281 Reviews
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Pick Axe IPAPick Axe IPA

Brewed by:
Tommyknocker Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly called "Pick Axe Pale Ale".

A classic American India Pale Ale dominated by pleasant hop bitterness and aroma. Dry hops impart unique aromas and flavors that add to the complexity of this ale. A blend of American hops melds into an award winning flavor that is our most popular draft in the pub.

Added by kbub6f on 12-14-2001

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Reviews: 281 | Ratings: 562
Photo of RoamingGnome
2.92/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 12 oz bottle into pint glass. Served slightly chilled...

A) Hazy, really hazy, kind of an unfiltered wheat look to it. The beer itself is orangish/amber. Not much head, just a thin collar. A little bit of lacing noted.

S) The tropical fruit aroma is light, with a little malt sweetness. There was a hint of alcohol too.

T) I didn't get much citrus on the nose at all, but the flavor is white grapefruit and some pine. The hops/malt balance is off for my tastes. The lingering aftertaste is unpleasant.

M) A lighter medium body, with zesty carbonation. Perhaps a bit thin, but really it's a bitter piney, kind of chemically grassy aftertaste that disrupts the mouthfeel for me.

O) The aroma on this IPA isn't half bad, but the the rest of this is below average in my opinion. Sorry, but I cannot recommend this beer.

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Photo of TrappistJohnMD
3.24/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours amber color with white head. Tons of lacing along sides of Teku glass.

Smell is a little skunky. Tangerine hoppiness and honey notes. Also a little petroleum character.

Taste is sweet malt up front. Slight over-ripe citrus. Not great but o.k. Dull bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel is light and watery.

Overall this was fair at best.

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Photo of tylerprince
3.51/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at Tommyknocker after an easy climb up Bierstadt.

A: Unfortunately, the beer's strong point. Pours a nice ever-so-slightly hazy copper with a finger of white head. Moderate retention but beautiful rings of lacing.

S: Strong citrus, primarily grapefruit, with a bready malt in the back. Moderate strength.

T: Like it smells. Hop forward for sure, but not at all imbalanced. Hits the palate with tons of citrus, which then gives way into a subtle hint of pine. The pine is accompanied by some alcohol, and tastes better as it warms - I found this flavor to be rather astringent, almost gasoline-like, over the first few sips. The beer closes out with a fresh bready malt accompanying a hint of lingering bitterness.

M: Crisp and clean; light-bodied and drinkable. In my opinion, light-bodied IPAs need some resins to prevent the beer from feeling watery. Unfortunately, this beer has no stick to it and falls victim to this problem.

O: A solid, highly sessionable IPA, if slightly lacking in character. Drink a little warmer to ensure you get the pine and not the pine-sol/gasoline flavors this beer started with.

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Photo of hopsolutely
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy amber with minimal white head, but decent residual lacing. Aroma of caramelized malts has pleasant "west coast" citrus undertones. The taste is initially sweet but transitions abruptly into a distinct bitterness. A pleasantly lingering bitter finish is preceded by almost what I'd call a "sharpness" across the palate. Still a decent beer, but not as well balanced as some.

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Photo of elgiacomo
3.25/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, best by June 18, 2012. Served at around 40F.

Pours slightly hazy amber/copper with a small one finger white head that leaves some nice spotty lacing and holds a light cap.

Aroma is mostly grassy and floral hops, a bit of orange citrus, touch of apricot, decent amount of bread and caramel malt. There is some sort of metallic note I’m getting as well. Good strength.

Flavor is grassy, floral and resinous hops, bready malt, some caramel and toffee, mild sweetness, decent bitterness. Minimal alcohol.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, a bit oily, good carbonation.

A decent IPA, nothing groundbreaking.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.82/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

apparently one of tommyknockers big medal winners at GABF. pours a very very light straw yellow color with a short white head. smells like fruity hops, tropical and pungent. also notes of biscuity pale malt and grassy yeast. the flavor is totally dominated by the hops, which have a pleasant sharpness to them and plenty of fruity essences. not particularly bitter, just flavorful and crisp. feel is a little light on the body for an american ipa in my book, could use some more malt balancing out the hops in here, but the carbonation levels work just fine and the beer is a pretty easy session ipa, as it doesnt fill you up at all. i will have to drink a few more of these to better critique it, but its a nice light enjoyable ipa. good for summer.

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Photo of diamondc
3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Very cloudy, bronze. Some decent head and lacing.

S: Brown sugar, wheat bread, some lite tropical fruit coming through at the end.

T: Definitely on the maltier side, some chewy caramel malts with some orange, pineapple hop flavors.

M: Bitterness lingers on after awhile after each sip, a bit of a medicinal aftertaste actually.

O: Just an alright IPA, nothing I would look for again.

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Photo of Billolick
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So all of a sudden what seems like the entire Tommyknocker line of brews is available in bobbles and Pick Axe for growler in NY state.

Yorktown Beverage filled my growler for $12.99.

Pours near clear, typical almond amber, moderate lite tan head, super tiny bubble film, leaves nice looking fine lace and mini sheets of the real fine stuff, a marker IMHO of quality brewing.

Pine infused hoppy nose.

Tasty and easy drinking, something about IPA from Colorado and points west! Tastes fresh and clearly "in good shape" after the trip. Ample hop presence, more pine then citrus, but some grapefruit picked up. Caramel malts provide the balance.

Nothing amazing, just quality IPA is what I've got in my glass.

Looking forward to trying some others in the line, looks like only in bottles currently however...

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Photo of t2thebro
2.46/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- light hazy copper, one finger off white head dissipates rapidly.

S- bland, slightly grainy, slight orange peel. .

T- taste resembles smell. Pale Malts dominate till the very end, then just a twist of orange peel. Kinda disappointing. No bite, slight bitterness pale malts dominate.

M- low carb, slightly oily.

O- at the high cost of this beer ($11 a six), and as much as I like the black ipa I was expecting much, much more. Probably won't be back for more. Needs huge dry hop addition.

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Photo of phishsihq
3.03/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pick Axe IPA pours a hazy coppery-orange, with a half-inch of eggshell colored head that left slight lacing. A dash of sweet malt first hits the nose before giving way to more typical IPA aromas that included grapefruit and pineapple hop tones. Slight toasty malt flavors flow superbly into pineapple and grapefruit hoppiness, amazing balance in this beer! The finish is somewhat sweeter than expected, with only moderate bitterness in this light bodied, low carbonation brew. The balance in this beer makes it pretty special.

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Photo of FanofHefe
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, freshness dating of best by June 11, 2012. Pours a clear, light amber body with an almost two-finger off-white head. Decent retention and moderate amount of lacing.

Not overpowering, but a solid citrus hop aroma leaning mostly toward citrus with a hint of pine. A light, sweet caramel malt aroma in the background.

The taste is a just a notch above the aroma. Solid hop flavors of lemon and oranage citrus flavors that back up a solid pine resin taste. The sweet caramel malt provides a nice balance and blends very well.

Medium to light mouthfeel that goes down easily. A rock solid IPA overall that represents the style very well.

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Photo of HopHeadRyan
3.84/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

TommyKnocker - Pick Axe IPA

A - Hazy Orange - minimal head - residual head hangs around - nice creamy lacing (3.5)

S - Sniff from opened bottle was intense floral-citrus-dank hoppiness - Excellent! Once poured it has a less intense citrus-tropical fruits aroma - very very nice though. A definite dose of grains in the nose. Overall a much nicer aroma than expected (4.5)

T - Great taste…superbly balanced…Juicy tropical fruits…mild grapefruit bitterness…creamy sweet malts…great taste…I would however like to see the bitterness dialed up just a shade, while retaining its balance…it could handle a few more IBUs…60-65 would be perfect (3.5)

M - Creamy medium bodied, low carbonation, very soft-silky mouthfeel (4.5)

Overall - - A superb IPA…very balanced and highly drinkable…needs maybe a shade more hop character on the nose and in bitterness…the flavor is pure tropical hop juice…definitely try this IPA…great stuff! (3.5)


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Photo of TheCondor
3.23/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Obtained from a brewmasters collection mix and match twelve pack of Tommyknocker beers. Some have been good, some have been bad, but all have been fun to drink!

Appearance - Poured from the bottle into a standard pint glass. Pours a hazy copper color with a thin head which evaporates quickly. The beer will leave lacing all the way dwn the glass to the very end.

Smell - Certainly some citrusy and grapefruit smelling hops in there, along with a faint tinge of malt in the background.

Taste - A fairly pronounced grapefruit/piney taste throughout the drink. There is some sweetness at the end, but it certainly did not pack the bitter punch like I expected out of an IPA. Maybe I like mine a little stronger, but I just didn't think it was very bitter.

Mouthfeel - Light, thin, maybe even a little watery.

Overall - This is a decent beer. It's still an IPA, it's still a beer, and I would certainly drink it again if offered. That being said, I wouldn't necessarily buy it again. There isn't anything really wrong with it, there's just a lot better IPAs out there for the money. But it's worth a taste!

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Photo of legalpete19340
3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a hazy and orange with dull copper streaks. One finger of thick looking head that fell to a skim but laced.

S: Malt jump out ahead of hops with toast and grain. Grapefruit and pineapple.

T: Like a grilled pineapple and grapefruit on toast. Somehow its an even balance of the two with a bit of sour grain and bitter bite thrown in at the end.

M: Thinnish medium with mild carbonation.

O: Kind of a strange brew but I enjoyed it. The nose is near nothing and the taste is a malty pineapple but somehow i enjoyed drinking it. Not earth shattering but worth swigging a few.

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Photo of cyclonece09
3.85/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a 14 oz "pint" glass. Pours a cloudy dark amber with a 1 finger head that dissipated at a decent rate, but not too quickly. Has a small floral aroma, a little piney with definite hint of hops. Has a high hop taste but definitely balanced with some nice malty hints. Can definitely taste both, and they go hand in hand. Goes down real easy and with no real aftertastes for a beer with 6.2% ABV. Overall a good beer and decent IPA.

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Photo of hosehead83
3.12/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Cloudy copper in color, with a rather short head of eggshell-white foam.
Aroma-Sweet toasted malt, citrus hop note
Taste-More of a pale ale than IPA-Toasted malt and especially hops are muted and uninspired. Undercarbonated, as it seem to go flat in the glass rather quickly. Decent, but nothing special here.

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Photo of Clowerweb
2.61/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured aggressively from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Slightly cloudy golden color, decent head and lacing. Respectable.

S: It smells like... armpit sweat B.O... It literally smells like someone didn't wear any deodorant. Pretty bad. I was so put off by this, I almost missed the hops hiding underneath. This smells disgusting to me. This is not like a Heineken or Corona skunk, this is skunk plus funk.

T: A lot like it smells, tastes like drinking armpit sweat with some bitter hoppiness. I'm really disgusted by the beer.

M: Watery, light carbonation, no body (unless you count the body odor lol).

O: A craft beer I would actually take a Bud Light over. This more than failed to impress, it literally made me want to throw up from the smell to the taste, not good at all. Practically undrinkable. There isn't anything likable about this beer. At all.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.1/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a standard pint glass. The beer is a slightly hazy copper color. A nice off-white head stays around for a while with sticky lacing. Smells of citrus hops and grapefruit. The beer tastes bright and crisp with hops and grapefruit up front. It finishes clean and dry. The mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall, a nice IPA. Straight-forward, it tastes like an IPA should, clean, crisp, and lots of tangy grapefruit/hops. Worthy.

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Photo of tdm168
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours an orangish amber with a quarter inch of of dense white head that has decent retention. The nose is citrusy and floral; heavy grapefruit notes. The flavor is lightly bready up front with a heavy citrus hop character in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with just the right amount of carbonation.

This isn't a bad IPA at all. It's well balanced and well hopped, but it's overall, a little simple. I would get this IPA again if another more potent, flavor intensive beer wasn't available.

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Photo of TippySelenoid
3.28/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass.

This beer is a copper hue with a thin white head. Nice lacing on the glass. Some nice bubble action.

It's got a bit of grapefruit in the smell. It's also got a sweet malt smell.

This beer has a grapefruit taste. There is a nice herbal hop flavor as well. The malts aren't very upfront but it's still a pretty balanced beer.

It's medium bodied with adequate carbonation.

This beers all right. Nothing special.

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Photo of Kromes
3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: A hazy light copper color with a thin line of bubbles on top. Good lacing down the glass.

S: Pine and grapefruit hop with a sweet malt in the background.

T: A nice sweet malt flavor mixed with citrus and pine hops. Finishes somewhat sweet and just a tad bitter and dry.

M: A little bit light and maybe thin.

O: An above average IPA. Nice flavors. No noticeable off flavors. There are better IPAs, but this is pretty solid.

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Photo of mwilbur
3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into shaker pint glass.
A: Pours a cloudy dark orange with 1/2 inch light tan head.
S: Moderate pine and citrus hops. Mild sweet caramel malt.
T: Sweet citrus hops, candi sugar, sweet caramel malt...lots of sweet, but not overboard.
M: Smooth, oily, and with a mild dry hop bite at the finish.
D: Good drinkability and sessionability. A solid offering.

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Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.35/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

NOTE: this beer is listed on the website as pick axe IPA, not pale ale. My bottle has different artwork but says pick axe IPA. From the characteristics I would say that pick axe is an IPA not a pale ale. I realize this review may differ from what's already here, in which case it may be freely moved, deleted or edited as the site owners see fit. I'm not sure what's up with the beer, but anyway here's my review of what I'm drinking right now...

Copper and clear, head was about a finger and lacing was pretty good.

Smell is of oily hops with plenty of pine and some grapefruit, plus lots of earthy pungent malts.

Taste follows the smell, plenty of hops and a very pungent malt base. Pine follows.

Body is medium and oily in finish, bitterness is plentiful.

Overall it's a decent IPA but isn't outstanding. If you're a hops lover though, there's certainly plenty of that here.

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Photo of Luigi
3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a clear amber/copper color with a healthy white foamy head. The head retention is great. Plenty of lacing around my glass.

The aroma hits the spot. Citrus and bread like malts. I hint of pine.

The taste has everything you would want in an American Pale Ale. Citrus is the dominate hops flavor with some lingering pine. The malt is toasted and mild and sweet to help balance the ale.

Finishes dry with a small amount of hops bitterness lingering around. Medium/light body and easy to drink.

Nothing offensive, this is just good APA, It has a great balance. All I can say is that did enjoy this ale and the brewery did a great job. Basically you are getting a basic (but nothing missing) APA.

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Photo of RobertColianni
4.1/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Perfect orange pale ale. No head, though.

S: No joke: Juicy Fruit bubble gum.

T: As the beer moves close to my lips, I start to smell the hops. I remember when I went into my friends back yard, last year, and plucked a few hop buds after a spring rain. This tastes like fresh hops. Bitter, but sweet.

M: Thin. Sort of irrelevant. Not overwhelming like many other IPAs. I'm so used to that heavy carbonation these days. This beer is perfect. I seriously love the mouthfeel.

OVERALL: I'm a little bias towards IPAs, but this one is perfect. It has that confection quality about it. Too heavy to be an all day sort of beer, but so perfect for those drunken nights alone in the corner of the bar.

NOTE: Live review.

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Pick Axe IPA from Tommyknocker Brewery
3.52 out of 5 based on 562 ratings.
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