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American Imperial IPA
3.38 | pDev: 26.92%
Scotland, United Kingdom
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Notes: IPA that has been in a grain whisky cask for 18 months with 30 kgs of fresh strawberries
Reviews: 15 | Ratings: 19 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to AmericanBrew for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a golden-orange color with a small white head. The aroma is heavy on the orange citrus hops. I also get something that smells like sweet, sugary candy. I guess that is the strawberries coming through. The flavor is heavy on the hops, with some grapefruit and orange citrus notes. I also get some biscuit malt. The alcohol is also quite present, although the beer is still easy to drink. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation. Glad I got to try this one. Thanks Eric.

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Photo of nkersten
2.03/5  rDev -39.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Bottle shared by Chris on NYE - thanks, but I can see why you would not want to carry this one over into 2011. Poured into a Lost Abbey pint, golden yellow with small white head that fades quickly. Slightly rotten strawberry aroma, spicy Scotch Whiskey, with a tiny it of pale malt in the background. Taste is slightly sour puckering strawberries, floral hops, spicy and peated whiskey, alcohol heat, slightly fruity yeast esters as well. On paper this doesn't sound so bad, but when all of these flavors are combined it has a medicinal, toothpaste mint flavor. Medium bodied with a medium carbonation and a dry finish. One of the least drinkable beers I have had (at least until we opened BA 1000 IBUs). My notes say "this taste is giving me a headache", if that is any indication of the drinkability.

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Photo of Sean9689
2/5  rDev -40.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

Oh boy, Chris, thanks? Umm, yeah...poured into tulip.

A - Pours a clear golden/yellow color, lots of bubbles that quickly vanish into nothing but a few bubbles here and there.

S - Slight strawberries, lots of oaky booze, no real bitter or hoppy notes at all.

T - Ugh, terrible. Burnt rubber, oak, some type of sweet/rotten booze. Terrible astringent finish, hard to swallow, knowing what it's going to be like.

M - Medium, very slight carbonation, semi-dry finish.

D - After a few ounces, I had to dump this one. Man, I don't really know what BrewDog was thinking with this or why they would bottle this abomination. $100 for 750ml? Are you crazy? Avoid at all costs unless you like injuring yourself.

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Photo of MasterSki
2.32/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Thanks to spycow for the share. If there was one good thing about New Year's Eve, it was allowing us to unload beers from our cellars that we all knew would be pretty bad. Served in a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A - Pours with a quick-dissolving wisp of white foam that left behind no lace, collar, cap, etc. Transparent golden, with only a few tiny bubbles providing evidence of carbonation.

S - Overripe strawberries and whisky. Not bad to start, but gets more smoky and unpleasant as it warms. Whatever DIPA went in the whisky cask is long gone.

T - The taste is quite a bit worse. Weird mix of booze, rotten fruit, vomit, burnt wood and rubber. Burping yields strawberries and whisky. No obvious hops, and an unpleasant solvent aftertaste. Complex, but not in a good way.

M - Hot alcohol, strangely bubbly, sticky, tannic, and slimy all at once.

D - It took a lot of effort to choke down 2oz of this one. Either this has aged incredibly badly or someone was hyping this crap like crazy. I was really surprised to find the 750ml bottle of this empty at the end of the night.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.18/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for sharing Jon! From notes.

Bottle was a very short fill. I was worried, but it poured out an orangey color, a little head. No substantial oxidation.

Tons of strawberry in the nose with a certain creaminess to it. Ironically, this was more successful in strawberry flavor than the shorts beer I had last night. Reminds me of a strawberry creamsicle. There is a good woody vanilla component that contributes to this, caramel malty flavor as well. Taste has a very subtle bitterness in comparison the rest of the flavors, woody vanilla sweetness with strawberry flavor and adds with the barrel character. Adequate carbonation, medium bodied, and somehow not overly boozy.

Not sure how, but this was a lot better than I thought it would be. Glad to have tried it. Thanks for the chance.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.67/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

reinheitsgematt pulled this out at a recent tasting.. Very cool Matt!!!

Pours just a nice standard clear golden with a thin white head and cap...

The aroma is an odd but pleasing mash-up of strawberries and oak with a fair amount of whiskey mixed in.

Flavor is much more fruit forward.. oak and pale malt are there mid palate.. whiskey comes in a bit heavy toward the finish.. a bit minerally with latter pours... and boozy which melds surprisingly well with the berry presence.

Weird for sure.. I liked it for sure. I came back to this bottle numerous times.

Thanks a ton Matt.. I am very .... very... happy that the few of us had the chance to enjoy this one.


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Photo of Cedromar
2.8/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Oh BrewDog, if only you invested the time in effort into brewing that you do into marketing.

Where to begin?

I brought this one to pop and share with my good friend Chris as we enjoyed my birthday dinner.

Appearance was a golden straw with a bubbly white head that quickly disappeared.

The smell is of whisky, whisky and faint strawberries.

Taste is straight whisky, nice but where are the f*cking strawberries? I mean, there really isn't much going on here, just whisky flavors. If I wanted just whisky flavors I'd buy a bottle of f*cking whisky.

Mouthfeel is just too carbonated for my liking. Which really hurt the drinkability.

BrewDog, here's a new tagline for your beers "BrewDog, Taste the mediocrity!" Have that, have that on me.

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Photo of tpd975
3.62/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another rare treat from the ratebeer winter gathering.

A: Pours a nice golden hue with a small white head. No real retention or lace.

S: Aromas of tart berries, stale oak, and mild booze.

T: The berry stands out for sure. Very woody with mild boozy notes. The IPA in this beer is understated. Light pine but not much else. This one had lots of promise but it just falls a bit short.

M: Medium in body, smooth, low carbonation for the style.

D: Okay, I had high hopes for this one, but it did not live up to my expectations. That being said I am happy to have tried it though.

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Photo of pwoody11
3.15/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Talk about disappointed.

I read quite a bit about this beer on the Brewdog website and have been trying to find a bottle for awhile. It was aged in whiskey barrels along with fresh strawberries.

The beer poured a hazy golden. At pouring there seemed to be quite a bit of carbonation, but it dissapated almost immediately leaving just a small ring of head around the outer edge of my glass.

Aroma was fruity, mostly strawberries obviously and a fairly strong whiskey scent. A light hop aroma danced around with them.

The taste was again strawberries up front with quite a bit of whiskey flavoring. The beer was really boozy. After the first few sips all I was getting was the booze.

This wasn't a bad beer, but it wasn't anywhere near a good beer. Maybe I hyped it up in my head too much and expected so much more. It really wasn't worth all of the trouble I went through to get it.

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Photo of AgentZero
2.24/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Big thank you to jrallen34 for sharing this one with me.

A - Very cloudy yellow with a ton of sediment floating in the bottom. Small head that only rose on the pour, and disappeared quickly like the head on a soda.

S - Have not smelled anything like this. I know this is a strawberry brew, but the dominating smell is that of granny smith apples, almost with a sweet hard candy quality. I smell a touch of yeast and get a hard oaky vanilla influence. A little hops comes through, but it's pretty masked, nicely strong, but not unpleasant alcohol smell.

T - Wow, this is a hard thing to grade. I taste three very distince flavors coming through, and two minor ones. Extraordinarily complex. The problem is just this does not taste good. Normally I'd rate this tastewise at about a 2, but the complexity is appreciable. Starts out with the sour apple taste, then goes to some oaky whisky before finishing up with a hard yeasty alcohol bite. In between there are hints of bitter hops and a touch of vanilla. Don't think I've ever had a beer with quite this much to pick out. It just doesn't taste good, the alcohol is much to harsh and unpleasant, with a nasty phenol/grain alcohol quality. I don't taste any strawberrys on this until a long aftertaste (although you do burp them up). Very rough and unpleasant, with a somewhat rotting fruit taste starting in the middle o the drink.

M - Light bodied, not terribly carbonated, it wasn't anything real noticable one way or the other.

D - Couldn't finish it, just because it tasted too bad. High alcohol isn't helping either.

This was horribly dissapointing, not sure if it's a matter of taste, or if the rarity is helping the ratings along, but this is not anything I would seek out, or drink again. Was really looking forward to this beer after the reviews and reading about the process they used to make it, very unique, but did not deliver.

Edit: Had this again on 12/31/10 and I could barely get past the first sip. Lowered my taste score because of it from 3 to 1.5 and the drinkability from 2 to 1.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.22/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I drank this from a 750ml bottle into my Orval glass.

The beer pours a light golden orange with a light white head. The head only rises about a finger and is gone right away.

The aroma is light, you get mostly a green apple jolly rancher with a hint of vanilla and alcohol at the end.

The taste is not super. It starts off dead in flavor then there is a light creamyness that grows into a very strong grain alcohol middle. The alcohol is overwhelming it makes it really unpleasant. At the end there is a slight hint of the strawberries followed by more grain alcohol.

The feel is pretty light with a lasting alcohol flavor.

This was a drain pourer.

I was really excited to drink this beer, but this was a huge let down. There was hardly any strawberries or sweetness to it and was dominated by a terrible grain alcohol.

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Photo of koopa
4.42/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1965 Grain Cask Ale aged with Strawberries in a whiskey cask

750ml bottle (from the first wave that were shipped over) displays no carbonation pop when the cage and cork are removed.

Appearance: Beer pours a completely transparent pale copper with a 1 finger white crown that displays little retention or lace.

Smell: A really nice mixture of strawberries, a touch of hop bitterness, and a healthy dose of well blended whiskey.

Taste: Fruit glorious fruit (strawberries duh) makes the first impression, then the hop bitterness comes much more to the forefront than it did in the nose, but its soon swept away (like blood from a mishap on a ride at Disney World) by the whiskey character.

Mouthfeel: On the thin side of medium bodied and a bit lacking in carbonation which isn't entirely surprising considering the abv.

Drinkability: Very good considering the strength of the brew and the whiskey character.

This is a pretty great beer and I'm very happy to have tried it but I would never seek it out again at the price that it sells for. I also can't foresee it holding up too well so I predict that review scores will go down significantly in time. Strawberry flavors fade very quickly, as do hops....

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Photo of Jw347
4.95/5  rDev +46.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Going off notes , it pours a mostly reddish/orange color with a good but light head. The aroma was crazy(good) and all over the place. It smelt of berries, vanilla, slight boozy smell, oak, and decent smell of hops. Flavor is equally crazy. Nice and tart but sweet, strawberries do shine through but there is that great punch of whisky. Im not a huge whisky fan but it was well balanced for sure by the strawberries. I only wish i had more of this stuff

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Photo of Patrick999
4.79/5  rDev +41.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed via notes at a recent tasting, thankfully before we were all too drunk to fully appreciate this highly memorable beer, graciously offered up by a fellow BA JW347.

Strawberry-golden pour, very fitting. Nose will bowl you over with whiskey and bourbon-soaked strawberries. Big-time whiskey on the palate, followed by a good deal of hop, letting you know this is (or once was) an IPA. The strawberry-vanilla ties it all together.

Quite the special beer here, this blew away all of us who were lucky enough to taste it.

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Photo of bcdees47
4.69/5  rDev +38.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Zephyr is clearly something special and interesting; it was created by aging an imperial IPA in whiskey casks with fresh strawberries. Produced in very limited amounts, and thus, hard to find.

Appearance: golden, almost honey color, with a medium amount of carbonation in the glass. Smell is of fresh strawberries, very sweet, with hints of hops. You can also get a whiff of the whiskey character. Tastes of hops, but very mellow hops, as the bitterness dissipates very quickly. This is perhaps due to the aging process. The strawberry character is also evident, but is not syrupy sweet. On the finish one can certainly taste the whiskey character of the barrel in which it was aged. Mouthfeel is clean, light, and effervescent.

This beer is quite drinkable and deceptively strong. There's a lot going on in each sip, which makes it a delight to drink. Definitely an after dinner or aperitif beer.

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Zephyr from BrewDog
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 19 ratings