Hardcore IPA | BrewDog

very good
548 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Hardcore IPAHardcore IPA

Brewed by:
Scotland, United Kingdom

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
Reviews: 548 | Ratings: 1,493
Photo of DenverLogan
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice clear copper yellow color...small head that lingers. Big aroma of hops. A bit rough in flavors...strong hops with some citrus, cream of tartar, subtle pine oil. Decent, but not a US West coast double IPA, which alone is not a deciding factor, but it's not a Pliny or Green Flash and not something I'd crave. Not bad but decent.

 332 characters

Photo of thecarster1
3.37/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

a- bottle poured into a snifter, scarce layer od head that fades instantly to a wispy 'layer' of lace, if i can call it that, and a few medium sized bubbles. dark tangerine color, with minimal bubbling - great label though! haha.

s- clea nosed, light hop/malt, not overly fragrant, herbal tones make they're way out with some mystery fruit esters.

t- not the hop bomb i was bracing myself for. moderately bitter, herbal, earthy, there is a slight warming that evolves to a slight burn as it warms. light toffee notes, orange, earthy, pithy hops, and candied sugar as it warms.

m- medium body with slickness and coating.

d- okay, probably won't seek this one out again, i've had many better dipas and this just didn't stand up - it's solid, but i was expecting more from my first brewdog.

 791 characters

Photo of ericj551
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brewdog Hardcore IPA pours a hazy deep copper with a decent head that lingers just a bit. Big bitter citrusy and grapefruity hops burst out in the aroma, with plenty of herbal pine. The hop flavor comes through first in the taste, but seems mild for a moment. As the beer hits the back of my tongue the sticky, resiny bitterness and come through and linger well after the beer is gone.

 385 characters

Photo of Lerxst
3.67/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a very hazy/cloudy light amber with a rocky one finger white head that has fair retention and leaves some sticky lacing.

S-Pine, citrus and floral hops along with a biscuity malt backbone. A bit subdued, but pleasant.

T-Follows the nose with pine/citrus hops with a nice malt backbone.

M-Almost creamy, slick, relatively low carb level.

D-Goes down fairly easy, but doesn't really lend itself to making you want another.

Overall, a solid, but not great DIPA.

 471 characters

Photo of Billolick
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, no bargain at $3.59! Purchased @ DeCiccios's in Ardsley, NY. Batch 072, with best before dating of "28/03/11" Ah those Europeans...gotta love em... Pours lighter, on the golden amber side, hazed, with a dull orange hue. Moderate and loose darker eggshell head. Thin film, collar and plenty of fine, loose sheeting and strands of lace left on the glass. Minor hops and light cookie dough on the nose. Easy drinking and quite enjoyable. Alcohol masterfully hidden. Plenty of grapefruit hop notes, undercoating of caramel tinged maltyness. Well done. Cost is prohibitive, doubtful I'd go for this one again due to this factor. Glad I gave it a try as its a nice subtle take on the ever popular and enjoyable DIPA style.

 733 characters

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

This beer reminds my of an Englidh style IPA that just ot kicked in the junk. Pours a clear copper color with an 1/8 inch off white head. The nose has sweetend ruby red grapefruit, pine and orange, nice hop presense but with a slight sweetness. The palate had dominating flavors of grapefruit (it is an IPA afterall), banana and orange peel. The hops show through the longer you hold it in your mouth and finishes a little hot.

 427 characters

Photo of maximum12
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A pint of this was ordered, served, & put down at The White Horse on Parson's Green.

Pours on the darker, redder side of the IPA spectrum. Pure hops assault the nose, with that particular subdued note that is a trademark of cask brews.

Brewdog Hardcore IPA is easy to describe. It's like drinking pine sap. Pine, pine, pine rushes the palate & will not let up. A bit off-putting initially, as my stomach & mouth adjust, I warmed up to it. Perhaps there is honey playing hide-and-seek amongst the tarry pine littering the glass, but perhaps not. Could be the thickest brew I've ever tasted, but its a tribute to its weird appeal that I thought of having another before deciding that riding the barely known Tube drunk wouldn't be such a fine idea.

Very good beer. Glancing at a few other reviews, I can only imagine that this is losing something in the time it takes to cross the pond. Too bad. Fresh, it's a unique, hit-you-in-the-nads IIPA.

 947 characters

Photo of BeerAndBourbon
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. Pours a hazy burnt orange with a creamy off-white head that sticks around for a long time and dissipates with good lacing.
S. Floral hop smell that is strong, but not overwhelming. Much more delicate than most IPAs from Pacific NW.
T. Begins and ends with a pine-resin hop bite. Bitter citrus peel in the aftertaste. Not overly complex, but pleasant.
M. Decent body, maybe slightly thin, but with a good level of carbonation.
D. It certainly tastes like an IPA, but it hides the alcohol very well.

Has anyone set some of these down to cellar to see how the flavors develop over time? I noticed that the first bottle I cracked was filled literally to the cap; I wish I had noticed before hand - a perfect bottle to lay down so that the oxidation would be very minimal. Anyhow, I put a couple down to see how they develop over the next year. More to come...

 859 characters

Photo of SkunkWorks
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark amber color, nice white head, but no real lacing. Hoppy but not much complexity there. Seemed to taste less American and more like a British IPA, oddly enough. Bitterness was spot on. Medium bodied, mild carbonation. It hides the alcohol very well and is easy to drink, especially since its a 9.00%. Glad I tried it.

 321 characters

Photo of paxton1978
4.8/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I'm reviewing this because i really didn't like the first hardcore, but this is amazing. Beautiful golden colour, great head with nice retention and the taste really stands up to the double IPAs i've had from the states. It's great to see a brewer go back to the drawing board with a beer and make something so great- this really gives me high hopes for future brewdog ventures!

 378 characters

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

There's nothing prettier than an IPA, and this one is no exception. Dark amber color, thick white head, tons of lace. A unidimensional aroma of citrus. Huge, huge grapefruit taste. This is a true hop bomb. Couldn't detect much in the way of a malt influence with all those hops. Pretty good beer, but just drink one at a time because your tastebuds won't be able to take it.

 374 characters

Photo of dgilks
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big, sweet hop aroma. Good crystal malt profile backed up by mango, tangerine and candy-like hops.

Amber colour with a big, fluffy, off-white head. Good head retention.

So, it appears I have the old formulation of this beer but I love it. Big, hop flavour with tangerine, pine, resin, passionfruit. Strong bitterness which is relatively clean. Good malt profile to back it all up. Really solid.

Medium-low body with moderate carbonation. This works well.

A really tasty DIPA with plenty of complex hop flavour. The malt profile sits nicely in the background. Well done.

 573 characters

Photo of DIM
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: Easily the palest DIPA I've seen. It was a clear, extremely pale golden color. It poured with a somewhat sticky, large bubbled head.

s: Neither hot nor overly sweet the way so many DIPAs can be. I smelled toffee and plenty of tea-like distinctly English herbal hops. I generally prefer American hops but I find this to be undeniably appealing.

t: This hides its abv extremely well. It starts off tasting of toffee with a hint of brown sugar. Shortly thereafter a wave of herbal bitterness all but washes away the maltiness. The bitter finish is long lasting and pretty damn tasty.

m: Chewy and sticky at the same with gently fizzy carbonation.

d: Its been a long time since I enjoyed a DIPA this much. I prefer American IPAs to their British counterparts by a wide margin, but the opposite may be true for DIPAs. I haven't tried any other English DIPAs, but I hope I get the chance to. This wasn't overly sweet and not at all hot. In fact, it drinks like an IPA with a 6% abv. At about $3 for an 11.2 oz. bottle these were priced pretty fairly as well. What a pleasant surprise.

 1,085 characters

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

Pours a cloudy, dark honey color with a small, bubbly head. Head falls to nothing. Very thinnest of lace.

Nice hop aroma but has a noticeable malt background to it.

Full hop taste, quite nice. Can distinguish the malt characters in the body as well. Ends a bit clean but has a very, almost too much so lingering bitterness.

Nice and smooth and medium bodied in the mouth. Has a little bite.

Decent enough, easy drinking Imperial IPA.

 437 characters

Photo of sk8man121
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into goblet. Batch 18. BrewDog is new to Maine, and this is my first offering from them.

A: Pours a solid amber with a thick, voluptuous cream head. Very attractive and inviting; the clarity is exceptional.

S: Grapefruit, grapefruit, and...more grapefruit. Honestly, if it weren''t for the more herbal qualities of the hops, I'd think I was smelling a freshly sliced piece of grapefruit. Perhaps a little one-dimensional, but really refreshing. I can't wait to take a sip!

T: Interestingly enough, the grapefruit aroma transitions to oak and booze on the tongue. The alcohol lends a very sharp bite with a warming finish. Hops are there, but a bit overpowered by the boozy nature of this brew. Leaves a resiny, bitter flavor on the palette. I don't dislike it, but then again I'm not sure how much I do like it.

M: Carbonation is fairly strong, which is good considering how cloying the alcohol is. Although it seems to drink easily, it does leave a very bitter coating on the tongue.

D: For what it is, It's a pretty good beer. As far as I'm concerned, however, there are much better representations of the DIPA style available. Stone's Ruination Ale & Dogfish 90 Minute IPA - while two very different beers - both have the rampaging hop quality to them that Hardcore IPA hangs its hat on, but they also have a smooth, malty finish, which is entirely what makes them so drinkable. This may just be too bitter for me, which is saying a lot.

Worth a try, but skip out on buying a case.


 1,515 characters

Photo of RuudJH
4.29/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

If you love the smell of hops, this is great stuff. Brewdog again did it for me.

Dark orange to brown ale, good head with good lacing, but hardly any carbonation.

Smell is fantastically green herbs hops and grass, also the apricot(?). Taste is bitterness all over. It's demanding and intriguing.
Smooth, but a tough bitterness.

Maybe the IPA style, which is quite new to me, has more balanced experiences in store fore me in the future, but for now, I'll gladly settle for a bottle of this brew any time.

 507 characters

Photo of ADZA
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a redgum honey,light amber hue with decent carbonation that leaves a two finger frothy head that stays around,the smell is very nice,sweet and subtle with aromas of grapefruit,confectionary and honey,it has a medium bodied mouthfeel which really suits the style and doesnt feel heavy and has a rather sweet,fruity,hoppy taste to it with tastes of rockmelon,honeydew and confectionary and for a DIPA i dont get very much bitterness and the 9.0% ABV does not rear its head at all to quite simply make this brew very sessionable and even though its not my most favourite Brewdog brew its right up there with some of their best that ive tasted and will definately drink it again.

 691 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from this little 11.2 oz bottle from across the pond in Scotland. By a couple guys around my age who got bitten pretty hard by the brewing bug. Thank god they did, I don't care if these kids are ADHD bastards looking for attention in the classroom. They're brewing both extreme brews, and those requiring a good bit of finesse. Pours into my Allagash chalice as a bright crystal clear copper amber hue with head dwindling down slowly...leaves behind intricate even thick bands of lace that form nicely with the brews overall experience. Aroma has an explosion of citrus and spearmint in the nose. Also a piney resinous layer of hops going on in the nose with the big Marris Otter caramel aspects going on. Flavor brings on a rush of citrus aka grapefruit flavor that bites your tongue unrelentingly with enjoyable hop bitterness, this is one of those eye opener boozey hoppy brews that will live on, fuck Adderall I think these guys are self medicating with brews like this to control their hyperactivity. Definitely coats the palate with layers of hop oils, medium bodied easy going carbonation a bit of an alcohol burn but really well hidden compared to most DIPAs/barleywines. Overall drinkability this one lands in the really good if it's every once in awhile. Nothing I'll buy loads of but when fresh this is damn good DIPA.

 1,335 characters

Photo of bunnyhustle
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow, I was really surprised by this beer. Pours true cooper in color, think copper piping and thats the color. 2 finger white head with great retention and lacing. Smell was great with a strong citric and pineapple aroma too it. Very much like a West Coast IPA but a little more aromatic I thought. Taste was a beautiful balance of malt and hops, with hops obviously being dominant. A nice caramel malt backbone with a strong, but not overpowering, hop bitterness (more on the citrusy side than piney side). Mouthfeel was rich and fuller with a nice oily residue left behind each sip. Overall I have to say this beer was terrific. You would never guess the ABV on this and I cant believe how balanced and palatable this was.

 724 characters

Photo of dogfishandi
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

batch 109 best before 11-21-2010. 1 pint 6.4 fluid oz.

poured into a goblet style glass. pours a hazy yellowish red, a little golden. a small white head that faded into a ring somewhat quickly. small amount of lace.

not a huge aroma like you would expect in an imperial ipa. the aroma mostly consists of alcohol mixed with earthy floral hops as well as grapefruit hops. there is some caramel malty sweetness tryin to break through the hops as well as a slight bready graininess.

in the taste you get some caramel sweetness, grapefruit, citrus that turns into a little bit of bready grains followed by some alcohol warmth with a bitter tropical fruity lingering flavor. a good taste but is much different than your usual american double ipa. its bitter, but defiantly not knocking your teeth out. has a nice malty side to as well as some fruity flavors. the taste is a little more balanced than the aroma, but still pretty hop forward.

has a big, full body. a nice resiny oily mouthfeel from the hops. a minimal carbonation. overall a good mouthfeel.

this beer goes down easy, but your going to want to take your time and sip this one down. alcohol is definatly not hidden. this one 22oz bottle is all i would need of this beer in one sitting.

this is an interesting take on such a popular style. im prolly not going to seek this out again, but it was nice to try. i wouldnt recommend this beer, but brewdog makes some other interesting beers that i would recommend for sure. went well with some tortilla chips and salsa but kinda overpowered the tangyness of the salsa

 1,578 characters

Photo of jbowers56
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A cloudy redish amber kinda colour. A bubbly yellowy cream head which seems to stick around for a while.

This is the older version, not the new 9.2% version but to me it smells like a combination of freshly opened packets of centennial, simcoe and, well, weed. Smells really dank. Have real trouble picking out some malt, but it is there.

Taste is not as brutal as I'd hoped, still very pleasing though. First up is a malty sweetness, followed by some really super fresh, slightly vegetal hops. Some presence from the malt profile steps in lending a caramel like sweetness but then the big old american hops step in with their resinous, grapefruity flavours and powerful bitterness to take over the show. Definitely a robust IIPA. I can see why people wouldnt like this, but I'm totally in to it.

Mouthfeel is good, but not exceptional. Though it is reasonably full, it is not full enough to justify the slightly sticky feeling you are left with after a mouthful. I'm marking the drinkability down due to the sheer intensity of the hop flavours. I can't sip at this one very quickly, nor do I want to. It's a good 5 minutes before the flavour has subsided from my tongue.

 1,174 characters

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

Beer is a fairly attracting hazy amber. Very little head. Not much aroma. Faint hops and malt. Taste is kinda nondescript, but has a bitter malt and hops finish. It's not that hoppy considering that this beer calls itself an IPA. Mouthfeel is a little heavy. The alcohol is quite warming. Drinkability is so-so. This is a strong, heavy beer. Wouldn't want to have more than one.

As with many Brewdog beers, it's a little weird and unconventional. It's almost a cross between Fin du Monde and some sort of double IPA---perhaps Dogfish Head's 90 minute. This certainly isn't a typical IPA. All in all, not bad, but not quite good, either. An interesting occasional change of pace, but not something I'd want again and again.

 723 characters

Photo of vdoz3
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had low expectations given the B-, and was very much impressed. Figured I'd review it to do my part to counter. 330ml bottle poured into a tall glass.

A - accidentally poured too rough creating a huge head, which died down just enough to leave a sizeable head that's still there 3/4 of the way down. Huge chunks of sudsy lacing reach all the way to the top of the glass. Brew itself is a clear reddish orange (more orange when held up to the light).

S - There's a breadiness in the nose that comes in first before the tart, pungent (mustardy) hops kick in.

T - This is where the beer won me over. It starts with big, aggressive, oily spicy (mustardy) hops, followed by sweeter, more floral, still oily, and almost taste like wet-hop, hops. Ends with a clean, sweet hop taste.

M - Despite ending on a hop note, it's not a sticky, cloying end. It's a very smooth, clean, refreshing end.

D - I would definitely not guess this is a 9%+ brew. Could keep drinking it, probably even pull off a big champagne bottle.

Alright, BrewDog! Maybe I will have to try Sink the Bismarck! afterall...

 1,088 characters

Photo of Casey10
3.6/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is okay I liked it and while I rated it just above average in most categories I would try it again as it definately is well balanced.

A - hazy yellow with minimum head.

S - Fruity almost smells like a barleywine smell.

T - candy caramel apple with a bit of cinnamon.

M - almost dry a little sour as well and a bit puckering.

D - Is good I would have again and I like the fact it tries to be different from all the other IPA's out there as well.

 460 characters

Photo of mgbickel
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured ½ of a bomber into a Perfect Pint glass. Formed a single finger off white head that dissipated quickly leaving no trails behind. The body is a hazy amber/orange color with lots of active bubbles.

The nose has lots of fruity aromas up front...citrus, apricot, maybe a little pine. A sweet grain (grass like) aroma can be detected in the background.

The flavor starts off sweet and caramel like but turns into a bitter hop bomb at the finish. You can detect some fruits and grains all throughout the drink.

The mouthfeel is medium, slightly drying with a good amount of carbonation.

This is a nice drinking IIPA. The alcohol is hidden well and sneaks up on you. I would have no problem finishing a big bottle or two...!

 730 characters

Hardcore IPA from BrewDog
3.83 out of 5 based on 1,493 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.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.