Improv (Improvisación) Oatmeal Rye India-Style Brown Ale | Cigar City Brewing

Improv (Improvisación) Oatmeal Rye India-Style Brown AleImprov (Improvisación) Oatmeal Rye India-Style Brown Ale
Liked This Beer
3.77 w/ 366 ratings
Improv (Improvisación) Oatmeal Rye India-Style Brown AleImprov (Improvisación) Oatmeal Rye India-Style Brown Ale

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
What you have here is an Oatmeal Rye India-style Brown Ale. Now you might be thinking oatmeal, rye, brown ale, India-style; isn’t that a lot to be going on in just one beer? Well yes, it is. But that is the point. Layers. Flavor elements building on and playing off of preceding elements, like a building wave; a growing crescendum of taste bud temptation; a wall of sound expressed through flavor and channeled toward your mouth. This beer isn’t for everyone. In many ways it is more than just a little weird. It certainly doesn’t fit easily into any category. It isn’t a brown ale, not just a brown ale anyway. It certainly isn’t an IPA. Calling it a rye beer would be selling it way short. In the spirit of all great things that are conceived in the moment, but perfected through passionate repetition it started life as an improvisation and grew from there. And it might not be for you. But if the thought of big spicy rye notes, a wallop of a hop punch, multitudinous layers of caramel, sweet malt and a respectable balancing gravity sound intriguing then you might want to wing it and give Improv a try.

60 IBU

Added by tpd975 on 03-29-2009

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 366 |  Reviews: 179
Photo of Tabni
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of CEDAMA
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of bob727
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of shchmue
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of xpdrinker
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of chardlogic
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of UncleE
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of Ryan1423
5/5  rDev +32.6%

Photo of jivex5k
4.75/5  rDev +26%

Photo of iL0VEbeer
4.75/5  rDev +26%

Photo of alltakn
4.75/5  rDev +26%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.65/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was really quite the enigma for me. I was not really sure what to make of it and it took the whole session for me to really figure it out. Served chilled and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 10/27/2009.

Rich dark brown pour, just menacing looking with a huge tan head that just towered over the top of the glass. Fading slowly it left behind tons of side glass lacing and a huge amount of spider like webs. Aroma was sweet and spicy at the same time. Notes of rye, brown sugar, molasses like touches and hints of coffee are all coming through very clearly. Each sip now seem to get a bit more complex then the one before it, really very well done here. Rich chocolate notes blending well now with huge malts and a touch of rye that are just fantastic. Light suagry finish with a touch of hops in the back, just enough to push it over the edge for me. ABV is very well hidden and had no issues at all with polishing this one off.

Overall this was very, very solid. Not really sure what style it fits into but it was soo damn good. I was very impressed here.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
4.62/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I am not just rooting for the home team when i say that this beer is a phenomenally interesting and satisfying brew; it is off the hook, no doubt.

A - very dark translucent brown with a nice off-white head and some lacing

S - It smells way crazy; I detect a tart Belgian sour-lemon aroma coupled with a rye-influenced malt and a grapefruity hop. Not all of these aromas are represented in the flavor. The tart Belgian aroma is not accompanied by a corresponding taste in any significant measure, for example.

T - Such a complex flavor profile; sweet rye and pumpernickel flavors initially, followed by intense grapefruit impression, finishing with a strange duality: on one hand, it is bitterly sour and pickly-astringent, and on the other hand, it is sweetly roasty, nutty and chocolate-y. Overall, this is a great tasting "Brown Ale"; I would say this beer is more unclassifiable, or like a Belgian dark something or other...

M - Well-carbonated, full-bodied. The flavors last for a tremendously long time in your mouth; to the point that it is an experience usually only found in fine wines.

D - It is a taste sensation; highly recommended.

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Photo of CampusCrew
4.55/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Quite possbily the most favorful brown ale ever made. St first the title of the beer sounded like it was too much but it worked.... very well.

appearance: deep dark black, pure ebony, loaded head and creamy froth.

smell: a mix of roasted malt and hops.

taste: rich and slight chocolate roasted flavors and nice herbal pine from the hops

mouthfeel: not thick as it looks. medium bodied

drinkability: a very nice beer. very complex and has a lot going on. not a plain beer by any means.

 492 characters

Photo of corby112
4.53/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark copper/chestnut brown color with dark mahogany edges when held to a light source. Massive frothy 3 finger light beige head that has amazing retention only very slowly and minimally fading into a pillowy 1 finger cap and chunks of lacing on its way down.

Aroma is pretty hop forward with some nice citrus notes, roasty caramel malt, rye and oatmeal. It really is a pleasant surprise how hoppy and citrusy the aroma is, especially for a darker beer. This characteristic is nicely balanced by the rye, oatmeal and caramel malt notes.

Bitter floral hop mouthfeel with a smooth, creamy medum body with roasted malt and oatmeal notes followed by sweet rye presence and bitter dry finish. The hops really shine through all the way through, lingering over the other flavors into the finish.

Lots of bitter floral hops up front with a nice sweet citrus fruit presence that blends perfectly with the rye flavor. There is a nice caramel malt backbone that is slightly roasty with a prominent oatmeal presence and a slightly smokey and dry bitter hop finish. The ABV is very well masked and this beer is very quaffable considering it's complexity. Highly recommended.

 1,171 characters

Photo of Insubordinator
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of Jonbw
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of One2Remeber
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an over-sized snifter. Reviewing as a hybrid style rather than a traditional brown ale.

A: Thick, dense creamy frothy tan colored head that stays around for a while. Body is black with a dark purple hue in the light. Looks very unique and inviting.

S: Smells like an 'oatmeal cream pie'. Rye always smells 'gummy' to me, like chewy bread. Also picking up a hint of rye spiciness. Heavy aroma of creamy oatmeal is making my mouth water.

T: Oatmeal up front but it is light like a brown ale rather than a stout. Followed by an intense, pungent hop burst of herbal, earthy tones with hints of citrus. Rye spiciness finishes and lingers around. Great transition of flavors. Smokey, roasted malt backbone throughout entire sip.

M: Unique mouth feel, it doesn't remind me of any particular style. It feels light like Maduro, hoppy as Jai Alai and a rye component like Terrapin's Rye Squared.

O: This is a must try. I love Cigar City mostly because they are true to styles and always deliver home runs. It is nice to change it up and show the pallet something new and crazy every once in a while:) This would be great a great buffer between drinking IPAs and going to a stout.

 1,188 characters

Photo of godmare
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of josephwa
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of Howlader
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of mhaugo
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of Lob
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of jda007
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.48/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottle into red wine glass - psyched to see this one in NYC.

Pours super dark brown, bordering on black, with a big, 2 finger light-khaki head that's so dense and creamy. Walls of lacing and fantastic stickage round out the experience.

Nose is chock full of citrus - grapefruit and orange rind, sweet pineapple and mango, nectarine and a more subtle sweet caramel not in the back that hints of rye. Don't get the oatmeal at all in the flavor, but that's to be expected with such a massive hop note.

Taste is phenomenal as well. This is the first dark IPA (India Brown Ale? Whatever.) that has just blown me away. Gorgeous sweet citrus notes that follow right along the nose (grapefruit, mango, oranges) blend perfectly with notes of caramel, chocolate, rye, even coffee and just a bit of nutty oatmeal, before leading into a long, rich finish that nonetheless carries a slightly spicy, amazingly citrusy bitterness. From someone who isn't a self-proclaimed hophead, this one is damn near perfect for me, in almost every respect.

Mouthfeel is slick and silky, with a soft, creamy but sharp tiny bubbled carbonation complementing the full body.

Drinkability is excellent - the somewhat aggressive bitterness on the finish does build up a bit, but the balance and flavor interactions are spectacular. What an experience. If I've learned anything about the folks at Cigar City, it's that they know their big, dark beers. Phenomenal.

Note: best at a slightly cooler temp. gets more muddled as it warms, and bitterness tends to build. Scores changed to reflect this - still, an excellent beer.

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Improv (Improvisación) Oatmeal Rye India-Style Brown Ale from Cigar City Brewing
Beer rating: 65.8% out of 100 with 366 ratings
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