Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

Hardcore IPA | BrewDog

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
very good
547 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Hardcore IPAHardcore IPA

Brewed by:
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Imperial India Pale Ale rocks…hardcore! But don’t take our word for it...this little bottle has a grandiloquent story to tell.

2,204 malted Maris Otter grains gave all they had to offer the world to provide the robustly delicate toffee malt canvas for the ensuing epic. 4 Hop Cones willingly sacrificed themselves to ensure your mouth feels punished and puckering for more. 9,900,000,000 yeast cells frantically fermented their little hearts out as the sugars became alcohol in the depths of our fermentation tanks.

2 humans and 1 canine companion were relatively happy with the results.

150 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-10-2008

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 547 | Ratings: 1,489
Photo of MaltyPythonsHopCircus
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazy orange with off white head. Aroma is somewhat tropical with marmalade and herbal notes. Flavour is fairly malt forward with caramel and toffee. Hops are somewhat tropical but earthiness lingers in the flavour. The high alcohol comes across slightly hot but not overwhelmingly. Goes well with homemade pizza

 319 characters

Photo of rex_4539
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Slightly hazy amber/mahogany color, half finger off white head, messy lacing, nice carbonation.

S: Hops, malts, tropical fruits.

T: Hops, tropical fruits, bitter, slightly malty, a combination of sweet and bitter aftertaste.

F: Good bodied, nice mouthfeel.

O: Very good, hoppy IPA, full of flavor.

 304 characters

Photo of Jerseyislandbeer
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear amber body with a white head. Aromas of hops, sweet passionfruit, and apricots, citrus undertones. Tastes of bitter sweet hops, pine resin, strong grapefruit and touch of sweet passionfruit at the end.

 215 characters

Photo of Everydayoff
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured into an oversized wine glass.

Hazy amber hue with decent off-white frothy head with rather short retention, it dissipates to some sheet of bubble atop along with some lacing patch and spot on the glass-side. There is slow risen effervescence as visible carbonation.

Big in all aspects, significantly sweet caramel/toffee malt, floral, pungent, spice, earthy, fresh cut grass, pine, citrus, and kind of tropical fruit.

Bursting all over with the hoppiness affair with a sharp resinous bitterness covering all the taste buds, beneath that pleasant bitterness there is something mysteriously hidden inside. Well, let’s explore. Sweet toffee/caramel malt as a foundation to all other flavors, hops get connected in business again with a note of citrus, pine, spicy, earthy, herbal, resiny, and astringency. The bitterness is persistent yet remarkable that dwells there from the first sip until long-lasting in the aftertaste.

Full body with smooth mouthfeel and medium carbonation that is good enough to carry all the things well inside the palate sensation, very dry finish.

This beer is truly a treat for hop heads. Despite the high ABV and intensity, it is very drinkable as alcohol is not much existence during the tasting but for sure it is still there lurking and will make you feel the heat.

 1,321 characters

Photo of Piercan
4.85/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

One of the very best beers I've ever had.
Draft in a pint glass at the Black Peat Scottish Pub, Place Lorraine, Angers, France (Pays de la Loire). A recent addition, Spring 2016.
A firework of hoppiness and flavors, a poem that unwinds, with some distant citrusy notes that linger in the mouth.
More floral than most American IPAs.
More serious bitterness and much more taste than any English IPA.
This a rare jewel of a beer.

 432 characters

Photo of Zet
3.51/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Nice orange colour with a decent head of foam. Promising smell of tangerine, peach, lychee and malt. The taste is a bit disappointing however. Guess the brewers simply put too much in these beer, which makes it hard to distinquish the different flavours. The entity has a nice bitterness going on, but esters and hop aromas seem to be squeezed out. It tastes quite herby to be honest. The high abv also doesn't seem to provide a nice full mouth feel or warmth. I guess i prefer the lighter brews from this brewery.

 514 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.46/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Nice orange color, full 1" of white head. Aroma was muted in terms of late stage/dry hops, nothing like the name hardcore should imply or explicitly state.

Its extremely bitter, they call it 150 ibus, so its one of those uber bitter little hop flavor beers. Some toffee flavored malt wise, a little bit of caramel to a lesser degree.

Needs bottle dating. Expensive for what it is.

 387 characters

Photo of MacMalt
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into IPA glass. It pours a hazy amber-brown color with a one-finger, khaki-colored head and extensive lacing. For an IPA, it has a very malty smell with raisin, molasses, pine, and floral hops. The smell reminds me quite a lot of Founders Curmudgeon. The initial taste sensation is a sweet, malty molasses, but it is overcome almost immediately by a blast of hoppy bitterness. There is a lot of pine and a hint of grapefruit. This ale is fairly viscous for an IPA, almost syrupy. It is moderately carbonated but it masks its 9.2% ABV quite well. Nonetheless, this is a potent beer. Overall, it's an interesting and enjoyable Imperial IPA. Again, I liken it to a hoppy, bitter version of Curmudgeon.

 715 characters

Photo of beersareonme
4.34/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

What a great Imperial IPA. Unlike some other similar styles, you cannot actually taste the 9.5% alcohol. But you can sure taste the bitter!! Brewdog rates it at 150 IBU, which I'm not sure of. Like many of the same line of thinking, I think any IPA rated over 120 is "just a number". Let's just say its really bitter and great tasting with a lingering finish but not a bad aftertaste. I only wish the head was foamier and longer lasting. Overall a super Imperial IPA.

 475 characters

Photo of JayQLaw
4.21/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Being a Scottish IPA, it leans toward the bitter end; much less citrusy- but in a good way. The caramel color is beautiful and it has a pleasant bite at the finish. A great mix of bitter, toffee malt.

 201 characters

Photo of ke1
3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into pint glass. Orange copper color. Floral and citrus hoppy scent. Taste is cloyingly sweet.. Can't get past it... Blech.

The hops are there in the taste though unbalanced with the sweetness.

This isn't for me, though I love imperial pale ales..

 263 characters

Photo of aleigator
3.19/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Filtered golden-yellow, with a small head. Floral, hoppy aromas, holding of a little. Malt is also recognizable, along with hints of citrus. This beer tastes actually much intenser than is smells. Begins hoppy, fresh for an imperial IPA, with grassy, citraic notes, along with bready malts. But that impression lasts only for the first moment, after that an incredible bitterness cuts of the upcoming malt sweetness. Hops get supported well by the bitterness, altough the bitterness soon stands on the palate more or less alone. Hop bitterness kicks in with an explosion on the tongue, which is, at first glance a little unpleasant, because it totally washes away the whole up to that point developed taste. But hop flavors get back and work well together with the dominant bitterness. Also some hints of malt tend to pass through, which adds an exquisite depth to the ale. Mingle together to a suble honey impression which underlines the still bitter, hoppy, dry character. Seems still a little unbalanced, but in a way the ale intends to be, therefore you can expect a rollercoaster on the palate.

 1,099 characters

Photo of breardon1776
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Imperial IPA. Deep, robust malts and hops. Earthy caramel/toffee flavors. I prefer traditional IPA but a nice substitute for a single brew on a cold night. Good with steak, pork and root vegetables.

 202 characters

Photo of TheBierdimpfe
2.74/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3.5

Hazy amber red color with some decent activity. A weak brownish creamy head that last for 5 minutes and doesn't produce much legs. The smell is piney and buttery. The flavors are strong orange peels with a little pine and some strong hoppy spices. The body feels full and slick with prickly carbonation. The finish is boozy with low freshness, highly bitter, and some peppercorn. Ending with a very strong puckering citrus attack. Overall the craft is average but true to it's name = hardcore. Not accessible at all, only for those who like heavy IBU and chewing on an orange peel. I find the flavors off and unbalanced, poorly presented, and nothing pleasing.

 660 characters

Photo of LantGladstone
3.91/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BBE May 13, 2016. ABV 9.2% 330 mL bottle from Ales by Mail

Appearance (Look) = 6%
clear, pumpkin orange. dissipating white head

Smell = 24%
floral, fruit, a bit spicy

Taste = 40%
malty, slight bitter, slight flowers, very slight citrus. well balanced.

Mouthfeel (Feel) = 10%
full bodied

Overall = 20%
perfect to style. my gold standard are dogfish head's 60, 90 and 120 min IPAs. This isn't quite as good as the 90 but still pretty good. A lot going on. A lot to detect.

 482 characters

Photo of vinicole
3.79/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Deep burnished gold with a large bubbled head.
Mild citrus aroma - I expected more.
Rich flavour of fruity hops with some balance provided by a light caramel malt. Big hit of bitterness.
Just above moderate feel.
A pretty decent DIPA.

 234 characters

Photo of PorterPro125
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: Bottle

A- Light Amber with a sizeable 2 finger white head with great retention and lots of lacing on the glass.

S- Intense aromas of Pine, Grapefruit, Lemon, Tropical Fruit and Sweet Malt.

T- A massive hit of hops to the tastebuds but not in a way that's overwhelming. Bitter Grapefruit and Pine are offset by sweet caramely malt.

M- Medium Body and Medium Carbonation. Nice slick mouthfeel that helps a lot with the drinkability.

O- One of the most aromatic and tasty Imperial IPA's I've had the chance to have.

 536 characters

Photo of sjdevel
4.45/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Nice 2-3 finger head on top of this light amber / golden brew. Great head retention (all of those hops definitely help) and the beer is crystal clear.

Very aromatic. A huge variety of smells: Grapefruit, Pine, Orange, Lemon, Pineapple, Mango, and caramel malt. I think I spent just as much time smelling this one as I did drinking it! There are other earthy smells in there as well that are difficult to nail down.

The initial punch of hop bitterness is immense, but not as strong as I expected with it being 125 IBUs. I expected a hop BURN with that level of bittering hops, but there are sweet fruity and caramelly flavors that help offset the bitterness. The sweet caramel flavors kick in soon after the bite and fade into some fruitiness. As the sweetness fades, the earthiness and herbal notes take over. It is a bit like cut grass and mud pies. The finish is nice, but a tad dry. This reminds me of just eating fresh hop cones right off of the vine!!!

This is a medium+ bodied brew that has a nice slick feel on the tongue. You can feel the alcohol slowly wicking into your system when you swirl it around in your mouth. There is also a slight dryness that you can feel tugging on your taste-buds.

I was impressed with this one. I expected just an overly bitter/hoppy brew, but there is more happening with Hardcore IPA. I like the sweetness and herbal notes that helped offset the strong bitterness. This is balanced quite well considering the high ABV and high IBU. I'm a big fan of the Brew Dog guys (both on their show and their brews) so I try to not let that taint my view of the brew. I would buy this one again.

 1,686 characters

Photo of soupyman10
4.39/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Amber color, finger of tan head, lacing. Big fruity hops nose, dried fruit, grape juice, prunes, a bit of caramel malt. Flavor is huge fruity hops, surprisingly balanced given the ABV. Apples, grapes, caramel and toffee malt. Not your standard hops bomb. Really quite delicious. Medium body, appropriate, fairly subtle carbonation. Excellent DIPA - would get again soon.

 370 characters

Photo of drmeto
3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

my very first ipa and im starting with a double cause thats the only thing i could get my hands on in a local store
-very fruity upfront with pineapple,citrus and Mango
-other tropical fruits come in throughout
-very bitter ,grapefruit-y finish
-nicely carbonated for a 9,2%er
-alcohol was quite prominent,which made it taste a bit like i would pprobably taste dishwater

i was scared of the 100IBUs but found it manageable.
though 100IBU beers will probably not become common in my purchases.
but im looking forward to more IPAs.
Beer was decent,wouldve been really good without the dishwater off flavour

 605 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.79/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured on tap in a tulip, the beer is a deep, vibrant, caramel-copper coloring, with a low profile, foamy, off white head. Aromas of pine, dank resinous hops, sugary toffee, toasted grains, bright citrus notes, tangy caramel, roasted notes, and a booze kick. Flavors are roasted and tangy sweet forward, malt heavy, with a toffee and caramel blend, heavily roasted, with a blasting overlay of tropical fruit and citrusy hops. Pineapple, mango, melon, grapefruit, orange, and apricot. There is a decent booze kick in the palate, as well. Very robust flavors on a big, slick body. The aftertaste is rich and tangy tropical fruit sweetness with a toffee blend. The finish is slick, dry, and with a building warmth from the ABV. Unique beer.

 737 characters

Photo of interzen
4.4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle served into a tulip glass

Look: Deep, coppery red with a certain amount of haze - one fingers-worth of coppery-tinted head with decent retention. Icky sticky lacing left behind as the head recedes.

Smell: Huge amounts of hops, but then you expected that, right? Really, though, that's all there is - there are plenty of little nuances in there: passion fruit, grapefruit, pineapple, mango, if it's tropical there's probably a hint of it in there. Resiny hops not so much, but the fruit aromas are so out there that everything else gets lost in the noise.

Taste: More of the same, with a really interesting underlying sweetness - think in terms of burnt sugar or toffee. This is probably the only hint you'll get that there are actually malts in there. That being said, it's not nearly as bitter as the smell would make you think - true, there's a fairly astringent finish but that strange sweetness keeps everything under control.

Feel: Very smooth, almost creamy - this does not feel like a 9% ABV brew, not one bit.

Overall: Brewdog - love 'em or hate 'em, you can't deny that they can come up with some pretty decent beer. Hardcore is one of them - if it's a big hitting IPA that you're after then this one will tick most or all of the hophead's favourite boxes. It certainly ticked mine - approach with caution on school nights though, the 9.2% ABV is dangerously well hidden. Demands careful drinking and utmost respect!

 1,443 characters

Photo of BeerDawgs
4.29/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L - Copper with little clarity, 1 finger of head and beautiful lacing left all over the glass. Gorgeous IPA

S - Huge hops, whole cone

T - Citrus and pine, perfect blend of both. Well balanced all the way through. Nice kick of alcohol in the aftertaste

F - Medium body and carbonation

O - An awesome DIPA. Well done!

 323 characters

Photo of MaximalC
4.34/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours an opaque bronze color with a meager head of khaki froth that rapidly settles into a layer of frogspawn. Aroma smells like a basket of rich, candied, tropical fruit, featuring mango, grapefruit, pineapple, passion fruit...you name it. There’s also an intoxicating layer of brown sugar, toffee, butterscotch, and booze on the nose; one of the most complex, best-smelling IPAs I’ve come across.

The taste is monstrously full-flavored and decadently sweet for an IPA. The sweetness is a deft amalgam that’s hard to pin down, though raisins, brown sugar, toasted bread, white grapes, and even plums are discernable. The hops are mostly resinous and slightly spicy, with rumors of pineapple representing the tropical fruit that was so prominent in the aroma. Warming alcohol manifests just enough to add more character without taking anything away. A palpable stickiness lingers on the lips between sips. Big body and fine carbonation yield a full, creamy mouthfeel that is absolutely spot-on before yielding slightly on the back end.

And so here we have the secret to a great IPA as I see it: a gargantuan, complex malt profile that makes the reams of hops look like an afterthought by comparison. This IPA would pass admirably for a top-flight American barleywine. Indeed, I’d rank this as one of the best I’ve had in either of those styles. This was my first BrewDog beer, and it was enough for me to totally understand their reputation. I wish I had a second glass to simply enjoy after spending nearly the entire first glass analyzing its many depths--impressive.

 1,592 characters

Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours hazy amber under a 1” cream colored foam cap that hugs the side of the glass. It clears up as it warms.
S: Spicy, earthy hop aromas are much more prominent that malt. Not much fruity ester aroma.
T: Fruit, big bitterness, citrus, malt toffee and light caramel, finishing with a lingering bitterness.
F: Creamy, medium full body, medium to medium low carbonation.
O: This is a DIPA with big bitterness with a balancing malt presence.

 448 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Hardcore IPA from BrewDog
3.83 out of 5 based on 1,489 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!