18th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA
Great Divide Brewing Company

18th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA18th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA
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American Imperial IPA
3.9 | pDev: 10.77%
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
18th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA18th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA
Reviews: 116 | Ratings: 390
Photo of jlindros
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a creamy 1/2 finger head that fades semi quickly with just a bit of lacing, over semi clear coppery reddish colored beer.

Nose brings lots of malts, coppery reddish malts, caramel galore, toffee, candy and candi sugar even, with some booze even in the nose. There are some hops but not a lot, mostly candied orange zest, fruity marmalade like, and a bit of earthy hop aroma.

Taste starts pretty sweet, with lots of syrupy additions, caramel galore again, toffee, reddish candy, etc. Malts bring reddish toasty malts, coppery malt flavors, etc, with a decent booze warmth and tingle even. There are some light toasty oak chip flavors, hint of vanilla with that but not much. Hops are more background, with light earthy flavors, lots candied orange marmalade, light fruity flavored hops, etc. The bitterness is fairly strong, but not a ton of overall hop flavor. Finish is quite bitter, earthy gritty hops, abrasive feeling, still quite sweet too and a bit sticky, lingering caramel and syrupy flavors.

Mouth is fuller bodied, decent carb, bit syrupy, some warming slight tingly booze.

Overall not bad. I remember the first time I had this I loved it, but I've grown a lot since then. Hops are fairly one dimensional and not what I would typically enjoy, earthy and candied flavors. Malts and syrupy flavors are more of an imperial red ale than DIPA, and the oak is very light overall. But still a decent beer with OK flavors, maybe not summer though.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle

A- Poured into a tulip. Pours a dark amber color with a nice off-white head with great retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is sweet malt, floral hops and increasing wood notes from the wood aging as the beer warms.

T- The taste like the aroma is sweet malt up front and some bitterness from the hops in the finish as well as some warmth from the 10% ABV.

T- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, this is a fantastic brew to celebrate 18 years of brewing some awesome beers. Happy 18th Great Divide! Cheers!

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Photo of slynke
4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Duvel tulip
Bottled: 3/20/12
Drank: 6/20/12

A - Deep amber, off-white 2 finger head (medium pour)
S - Lots of oak. Hoppy, sweet, citrus
T - Sweet start, some vanilla. Then comes the aromatic & bitter hops, with a nice oak finish
M - Medium body, thick for its style. Silky smooth
O - A very tasty DIPA. This is my 3rd bottle, and I'll be sad when it's gone.

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Photo of DavidST
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass, bottled on Mar. 21, 2012. This pours a brownish golden color with a pretty decent off white cream head which leaves a lacing. The smells are of pine and citrus hops, some alcohol, a little vanilla, not quite Burton vanilla though. The feel is medium to maybe a little thick for an DIPA. The taste is pretty good, better than expected, more vanilla than in the nose, a nice amount of hop bitterness along with a little caramel on the way down, a very nice DIPA.

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Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a cloudy, dark brown color with a one finger, tan head. It left thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of wood, vanilla and piney hops.

T - Good roasted malt flavor with notes of pine, wood, vanilla and citrus peel. Not a lot of bitterness.

M - It was soft and smooth. A medium to full bodied ale with a dry finish.

D - Another nice edition of the Anniversary Wood Aged beers from Great Divide.

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Photo of Hopswagger
3.77/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P:  Pours a deep copper color that is practically crystal clear with a few streaming bubbles. A crown of creamy bone head that disappears rather quickly to a white bubbly wake. 

S:  Sweet candied malts, molasses, floral hop aroma, old rustic oak and vanilla bean.  Sweet pungent alcohol stings the nose. 

T/M:  A creamy highly effervescent medium body that swirls in the mouth nicely.  Sweet candied and bisquity malts, astringent corn alcohol, a bountiful bouquet of floral hops, orange oil and a touch of grapefruit. Subdued hops compliment the aged toasted oak resin.  The finish is dry but smooth with oak infused plum and citrus alcohol.   White grapes fade in and out in the final linger.  Once warned the vanilla bourbon flavors really awaken and warm the palate.

O:  I love oak aged brews but sometimes the wood and smoke overpower all other flavors. That is not the case with this DIPA.  All floats are crisp and complimenting delivering a solid offering.  Great Divide knocked this out of the park. 

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Photo of JackieTH
3.61/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Bryant Lake Bowl in Minneapolis, MN.

Poured into a goblet a rich amber-orange with a thick cap of sisal foam that persisted with good lacing. It looks inviting and delicious.

Smell was rather sweet and oakey with subtle spice and hop oils.

Taste was sweeter than I was expecting with prevalent notes of oak. Hop bitterness was of a spice/earthy quality and the alcohol was a little noticeable. Vanilla appears as it warms. Dark dried fruits as well. As others have mentioned there do seem to be some Barleywine elements here.

Mouthfeel was smooth with decent carbonation, it holds together well.

I'm not a big fan of wood aging DIPA's. I have yet to try one that's spectacular and they all seem to be a bit depleted of hop and too sweet.

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Photo of TheHoppiest
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a tulip glass. This DIPA is a deep amber-orange color, with a thick 1" off-white head, leaving fractal lacing down the sides.

There's a lot of alcohol in the nose of the ale, tempered by sweet honey. With Great Divide's Anniversary Ale you expect hops, and this doesn't disappoint, with a tangy, pepper hop aroma, similar to GD's Hercules DIPA. Hints of each and apricot underneath to round it out.

Taste is quite good; starts sweet and subdued, having been positively influenced by the wood aging. The hop bitter presents more toward the end, with an oaky, smokey finish.

Has a fuller feel, but not a terribly bitter feel. The wood aging has really tamed and mellowed the hop presentation. A bit of a buttery feel, again similar to the Hercules.

A tasty, decent beer, better than GD's 17th Anniversary Ale, and certainly worth a try.

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Photo of Kevlee722
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle to a tulip. Lots of sediment sitting on the bottom of the bottle, poured slowly but still developed a nice foamy two fingers of head. Nice amber color with orange highlights, a nit dark for the style but lovely color. Smell is caramel malt, biscuits, hints of citrus, and sweet oak. Taste is both sweet and bitter, you can tell this used to be a DIPA but has evolved into a bit of an American barleywine with the did aging. Vanilla lingers on the finish. Carbonation plays lightly on the tongue. Medium-full body.
An enjoyable offering from Great Divide, doesn't drink like a DIPA, but I wasn't expecting it to with the wood aging. A good beer overall, regardless of the style.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Happy 18! Bottled on March 21, 2012

A - A dark amber, red color. 0 clarity. Not much head or lace retention

S - Sweet and malty. Not much hops smell?

T - Malty and sweet! Oak aged is very prevalent. Alcohol is well hidden.

M - Medium bodied. Well balanced.

O - A very good beer. But DIPA? Not really. Much more like a double red or double pale ale. But tasty none the less. But for a hop head like me, a little disappointed. No worries, 19 will be here before I know it

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Photo of t420o
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great divide 18th Anniversary 

A- pour produces a 2 finger light tan head that rests on a golden-copper body. Good retention and lacing. 4  

S-floral and citrus hops scent immediately followed by the caramel malt and vanilla oak chip scent. Slight alcohol scent. 4

T- wow I'm lucky I like sweet beers because this is very oaky and sweet. I'd like the hops to be a bit more prevalent because they seem to have been drowned in the malt and oak flavor. I still like it but this is really a DIPA?!? More like a double pale ale because the hops are lacking. 4 

M- smooth and creamy with good carbonation. 4 

O- I'm a sucker for sweet beers, so I really enjoy this one. I could definitely see how this may turn people off , but I feel this is awesome. Reminds me a lot of Southern Tier Oak-Aged Unearthly.  4


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Photo of snaotheus
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a large mug

Pours dark orangeish amber, doesn't appear to be cloudy. Medium head, clings powerfully to the side of the glass. Smell is orangey, flowery, and smokey.

Taste is interesting. Not over-the-top hoppy, not over-the-top sweet, but well balanced and tasty.

Mouthfeel is dry and smooth. Overall, this is a nice solid beer.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.11/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep amber color, excellent clarity, topped by three fingers of rocky off-white foam. Small dots of lace, and lots of them.

Strong oak/vanilla aroma, touch of alcohol. Hints of floral hops underneath.

Taste also leads, and leads heavily with oak/vanilla and booze. These are just wood chips? Tastes more like bourbon barrels. Alcohol burn but passes quickly. Not getting much in IPA qualities.

Full mouthfeel.

Much more America Strong Ale than DIPA, could use a big dose of juicy fruity hops. Well made, but not what I was hoping for.

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Photo of babaracas
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy dark red-orange with one finger thick dense, creamy off-white colored foam. Settles slowly leaving a few thick rings on the glass. Smell: loads of caramelized sugars with vanilla, whiff of booze and citrus - orange / tangerine. Oak is there upfront but lessens as it settles. Taste: acidic pineapple + milk caramel, vanilla, slightly earthy. Orange and stone fruit (dried plum?) notes. A bit vinous towards the end, drying with tannin bitterness. Medium bodied, creamy but with that almost-overpowering finish. Better than decent, but, for me, this series might have run it's course. Maybe change it up for the 19th? Or just call it a barleywine to laugh at our reaction?

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Photo of Blargimus
3.11/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into tulip.

Pours a clear golden amber with a finger or two of white head. Lacing doesn't stick to the sides of the glass, which is disappointing.

Lots of pine, but there's a huuuge amount of sweetness in the smell. A fair bit of alcohol, too.

A great deal of oak. Fairly well balanced, though it's a little heavy on the oak for me. Rumble IPA is a better level of oak for me.

Very thick and resinous, though the bitterness doesn't stick in the mouth like some IPAs.

This is solid, but I'd rather drink Hercules or Rumble, depending on my mood. Worth it to continue the Anniversary Series.

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Photo of cvm4
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a red amber color with an eggshell head that dissipates after a couple minutes to a thin ring around the glass. Minimal lacing.

S - On the nose it comes off as fruity and malty. I'm not picking up a lot of oak here. A slight hop presence.

T - Lot of oak characteristics, develops to some malt notes and finishes with a smack of pine hop bitterness. A sweetness lingers throughout.

M - Med/Low carbonation, somewhat coats your mouth and finishes dry.

O - I can see this as a love it or hate it beer. I happen to like this.

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Photo of crossovert
2.83/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

650ml red-foiled bottle.

Aged IPAs are always toss-ups. Either the brewer accounted for the loss of hop bitterness and aroma or they didn't.

This one pours a deep red with a creamy but foamy slightly off-white head that leaves a bit of lacing.

The smell is alcoholic and fruity. There is a bit of oak , caramel, and some English hop notes.

The flavor is nearly cloyingly sweet, medium to mild bitterness that increases. Some decent hoppy flavors with some grassiness, pine, and candied citrus. A bit of oak in the flavor but not too much. Some tannins.

Overall it is what I feared, just a mundane sort of brew that is bereft of its freshness.

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Photo of lnashsig
3.23/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

#BOTG number 37!

Poured from bomber into Brooklyn tulip. Pours a dark amber color, some cloudiness. Very dark colored for a Double IPA, I'm guessing from the wood it was aged in. Decent looking beer, but doesn't look like an IPA. Smell- Oak woodiness invades my nostrils, with some nice vanilla, caramel, and toffee notes. This is just so woody. Taste- astringent bitterness, pure sugar sweetness from the malt. The vanilla flavors are there, on the end. This is pretty one dimensional, not a lot of great flavors I was hoping for were there (tropical flavors were there last year: coconut, mango, etc). This is purely sweet, almost cloying, and the hops don't contribute a lot. I wanted more.

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Photo of Billolick
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber - $11.99 at DeCicco's in Ardsley, NY. Bottled on Mar 20, 2012 according to the bottom of the label.

Pours darker almond amber, tan head, stays a spell. leaves a nice lower sheet of lace and then bits and strands here and there.

Malty nose, with a rear coating of fresh hops. Nice.

Tasty, densely flavorful brew, with plenty of more malts, smooth and satisfying and then a better then average wave of fresh, piney and citric hops, with a slight minty bite. Also a smooth and lasting vanilla/honey note. Hops not over the top, but providing a nice counter balance to the rich malts.

Very soft and smooth mouthfeel.

Outstanding. Very enjoyable DIPA

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Photo of CaptDavyJones
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear dark amber color from a 22 ox bomber, with date of bottling and ABV clearly marked on the label.
Reddish hues along the edges and a thin sticky film for a head that dissipates fairly quickly.
Aroma upfront is of caramel, with buttery toasty notes through which some floral hops make their presence felt. As the beer warms up the woody notes become more evident, with nice vanilla notes coming through. Lots of lacing on this one.
Taste likewise is slightly woody and sweet upfront. Towards the middle the hops take over for a nice bittersweet finish, with the bitterness factor lingering for quite some time.
Very smooth, silky, chewy mouthfeel. This is a very malt-forward ale, which I have noticed with Great Divide brews.
The alcohol is very well masked. This does not drink like a 10% beer at all, felt more like a 7% beer, very easy to drink.
Overall this is a solid brew, not exception, but a solid brew from Great Divide.
Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of BrownNut
3.82/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22 to tulip. Served cool. 8 weeks old. Thank you for the very clear bottle date on the label, Great Divide. How hard is that, other brewers?

A - Dark amber, substantial off-white head that settles down to a film.

S - Some kind of lovely Frankenstein of honey, caramel, brown sugar, and candi. Vague fruit that's maybe a yeast thing. Smells great.

T - Rich. The wood comes through not so much as a flavor but as an instant and particular kind of dryness which you can tell is distinct from the hop kind. It's a bit like licking a board, though straddling good and too much in that respect. It's assertive. I'm having a hard time picking flavor notes out of this aside from a general sweetish malt flavor and some booze just starting to be noticeable. Not really getting hops. Slightly woody aftertaste with some sweetness.

M - Leaning towards sticky with a bit of tongue tingle and minor abrasion and finishing dry.

O - This is rich and robust and satisfying. I was definitely expecting more hops though. I'm wondering if the "aging" in this case is the kind of aging I'd do at home, which would fade hops and would explain things here. I would assume not. I think the wood is somewhat overdone and would give it a 4 if that were dialed back a bit.

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Photo of Rutager
3.18/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance. Pours a fairly clear deep amber-orange with have a finger of off-white head that leaves some nice lacing.

Smell. Sweet caramel malts and wood with a little pine and sweet tropical fruits.

Taste. Sweet caramel malt, fresh lumber and a bit of pine, vanilla and mixed fruits and astringent alcohol.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body, a little bit sticky, medium-low carbonation. A bit warm.

Overall. I love this brewery but this one wasn't one of my favorites. For me it was too sweet and the woodiness wasn't very complimentary.

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Photo of dorianmarley
4.41/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is ruby red with an incredibly thick head and lacing that last for days.

Nose is plenty of fresh hops, with baked bread, allspice, and pineapple.

Taste is buttery toffee, with tart cherry, sweet cream, lemon zest, and cinnamon muffin.

Mouthfeel is very smooth with medium carbonation. Every sip is silky.

Overall, this is a great American Imperial IPA that bangs home the sweetness as opposed to the punch.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a medium to dark copper color with a moderately thick two fingered head the subsides pretty quickly and leaves a soapy, but dense lacing ring. Carbonation is gentle.

S - Toasted candy caramel biscuit malt, oak, light grapefruit, and some alcohol effervesence. The aroma comes through as balanced with the malt being a little more forward.

T - This one is a surprise because I expected more malt flavor coming through, especially up front. Instead, the sweet malt is there, nips the front of the tongue for a very brief moment before being drowned out by a (very) sizable wave of oak tannins, florally cedar, and earthy tobacco, then ends with a lingering woody grapefruit bitterness.

M - Thick, full bodied, and incredibly dry; in fact so dry it sucks the spit off your tongue.

O - I was surprised by this one (in a good way) because the nose didn't follow the taste, I like the element of surprise. But, on the other hand, the wood tannins are so in your face and with the bitter grapefruit bite, I feel like my tongue just got beaten by a oversized wood plank with a nail in it. Definitely one of the more interesting big IPA's I've had, but a little less oak would provide a little more complexity to this unique beer. Maybe take it off the oak sooner next time. (Just my two cents.) I couldn't finish the bomber by myself, ended up pouring it...too many wood tannins and it didn't blend well for an IPA for my liking. Would have been better in a barley, imperial porter, or stout. Would have lowered the score further because I didn't care for the blend but it is impressive, just not my cup of tea.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled March 20th, 2012. Shared in two snifters.

Pours a cumin/cognac color with some haze and an inch-thick crown of old newspaper-colored head. The foam has escaped to the outer ring with bubble patches islanding on the surface. Already starting to stick a bit. 4.0

Oaky aroma with a hint of whiskey (although, clearly not from the barrel). Pine and citric hop notes with a dry, almost roasted, toffee malt backbone. Not overly hoppy. Lots of oak and slightly candied hops. 4.0

Most noticeable is the semi-bitter oak with some tannic qualities, second is the semi-spicy pine hops peeling away at rinds of grapefruit and navel orange, then a rich roasty malt gushing with toffee and caramel notes backing just below the wood/hop combo blast, lastly a warm and rich, sturdy alcohol note that levels everything out upon the swallow. Grainy oak sustains throughout the finish with some moderate hop bitterness to boot. A little bit sweet, a little bit rich, a little bit young. The implied grapefruit is pretty juicy, the pine is woody and sappy. Very atypical IIPA. Has taste similarities to some hoppy barleywines. I could draw a Venn Diagram with this on one side and fresh Sierra Nevada Bigfoot on the other. Fascinating. 4.0

Whooshy body with some scrubbing carb. Moderate spike in booziness as it warms. 3.5

I've greatly enjoyed past Great Divide Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPAs, and this one is no exception. A delicious, full-on beer. Interesting to think how similar I would have scored it had it been denoted as an American Barleywine. Recommended. 4.0

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18th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 390 ratings