Rampant Imperial IPA | New Belgium Brewing

very good
483 Reviews
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Rampant Imperial IPARampant Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A burly and bitter Imperial IPA, Rampant pours a pure copper and carries the sheen of a rightly hopped beer. The Mosaic and Calypso hops bring stonefruit to the front seat, and the addition of Centennials nod towards citrus for a well-rounded aroma. The taste expands these hops with heavy peach tones and a profoundly bitter bite. There is some malt sweetness to stand this beer up, and Rampant's finish is bone-dry.

Added by Huffaroma on 02-24-2013

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Reviews: 483 | Ratings: 2,889
Photo of McStagger
3.53/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber time. 28JUL13. A best by date, I presume.

A: Pours a translucent light orange with a bit of haze. One and a half finger of khaki head. Pretty decent retention. Head is thick and somewhat pillow-y. Moderate carbonation with tiny little bubbles racing to the surface.

S: Bit of that yeasty nuttiness that I seem to find in most New Belgium beers. I'm not sure if there's even a common denominator between all these beers or if it's just a mental connection at this point. Malt and yeast dominant, by a long shot. Very bready, with bits of the caramel coming through. Hops are limited to a bit of pine and nondescript citrus.

T: A mass jumble of flavors. Almost sugary sweet malt intro is completely nuked by a thin, astringent line of soapy bitterness that runs through to the finish. Pine needle infused citrus oil, and not in a good way. Some mango comes out, along with bits of pine needle, but these flavors are fleeting and don't contribute much overall. The soapy astringency has a difficult time masking the sugary, alcohol enhanced sweetness. The resinous bitterness wins out in the end, with a dry, pine infused finish. Still got that goddamn biscuit nuttiness I always associate with New Belgium on the end.

M: Medium bodied DIPA. The alcohol heat weighs this down considerably in the mid palate.

O: This beer was definitely a grower and not a shower. Messy in the beginning, this beer warmed and opened up into a fairly decent IPA. However, the alcohol sweetness and overall lack of hop flavor really held this one back. Could be the bomber, but mine seemed relatively fresh.

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Photo of magictacosinus
3.69/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Included in the first monthly "Beermageddon Night" with several people. Review is from my notes. Poured into a teku glass from a 22oz bomber. Freshness date is listed as "28JUL13."

Pours an orange color with a syrupy, near hazed looking appearance. Very similar to Ranger IPA yet substantial thickness and carbonation abounds here. The head is rather nice, especially considering the portion I got, and lots of decent lacing lasts around the edges of the glass. Bubbles are present in a semi-effervescent manner, but it's really the color that shines here... Or, er, *glows* when placed against the light. Not a bad look at all for NB... Definitely a classic West Coast IPA interpretation.

The flavor is not as hoppy or acidic as I'd expect, but there's definitely a syrupy sweetness aided by the extra malts that melds a solid fruit bouquet. While Ranger was pretty piney and floral overall, this one is filled with juicy aromatic fruits such as mangos, oranges, and dried limes. The hop profile, again, is not as present as you'd think, but the malts are neither too grating or overpowering in dissolving what this beer is supposed to do. Lacks a certain complexity and robustness in exchange for accessibility... But considering NB's widespread crowd, that is not too surprising.

The flavor is slightly better, filled with juicy oranges, tangerines, and a finish that is both slightly astringent and floral overall. Rampant, in this case, takes an aspect that I love most with these kinds of beers by emulating actually eating a delicious, ripe fruit coated with citrus notes, and thickening the experience with lots of carbonation and malty thickness. The malts are not too sweet here, and the hop profile, while not too diverse, is solid and flavorful. A very decent dry finish follows the initial wet feel, and and carbonation is lively throughout to hold interest and appeal. At 8.50% ABV, this is stupidly drinkable as well, and that owes more to its comfortable mouthfeel over the flavor. Very solid and satisfying overall.

I was pretty impressed with this one, I'm not going to lie. I've deliberately avoided NB beers over time for whatever reason but solid offerings such as Rampant make me want to revist some of their latest trends involving experimentation. This is a perfectly widespread DIPA that just might do enough to get people into the style with its comfort factor and accessibility. It's not the most explosive I've had, but it's undeniably flavorful.

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Photo of flexabull
3.71/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a bright and clear gold color with a very nice fluffy white head.

Aromas are very floral, grassy, with some pine resin.

Taste starts out thick, with very viscous mouthfeel. Sweet and creamy with hard candy notes. Finish is quite bitter, light sugars, citrus, floral, mineral like, with some resin notes. Flavors are a bit scattered and don't seem that cohesive.

Mouthfeel is full, smooth, with lots of body. I like it.

Overall, a nice effort with a few flaws. Looks pretty, with great mouthfeel, but the flavors and aromas are a step below the better DIPA. Still, a tasty DIPA with a good price point. Worth trying,

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Photo of riored4v
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in to a tulip. Clear, golden colored body with a 1 finger, dense, rocky head. Good lacing

Aroma was citrusy, malty and floral. Fair amount of caramel sweetness. A bit grainy and bready. Peach hop notes.

Taste was sticky, and danky hop flavors. Very resinous. Floral and citrusy. Moderate amount of malt sweetness with some mild caramel flavors. Bready malt flavors. Mild floral bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel was medium body, medium carb and a slightly chewy finish that turned crisp.

Overall a good beer, especially at the price point. Big hop and malt flavor.

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Photo of Roman5150
3.84/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

bottle purchased from Total Beverages in Murfreesboro, TN

appearance: light golden amber with 1 finger white head

smell: apples, citrus, pine, some grapefruit

taste: very bitter, tastes of apples, grapefruit, citrus, lemon, the aftertaste isn't as satisfying as other DIPAS.

mouthfeel: decent amount of carbonation

overall: Normally I dislike anything from New Belgium, but this one is pretty good. Not comparable to a Ruination, Hop Stoopid, or Palate Wrecker if you're looking for your hop fix., but for the price this is well worth a purchase. While there are better options out there, this is probably the most widely available, cheapest double IPA i've seen; and it's pretty good

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Photo of olilitewu
2.74/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

I concede that I might have served this too cold, but still, New Belgium disappoints me every single time...

Smell was great, very much a pine like aroma plus some pleasant fruity smell
Taste was ok, hoppy yet smooth, and I agree with a previous poster that this beer was not overhopped. But still comes with a signature metallic under taste that comes with any kind of New Belgium beer.
However, it was able to hide its relatively high alc. content with its smooth taste.
Overall felt similar to Hop Czar, but if I could choose, I'd get Hop Tsar every time if I wanted hoppiness in my beer. I can't get over the fact that New Belgium always has a funny under taste in its beers

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Photo of zeledonia
4.38/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

It's always exciting when one of the big dogs puts out a new beer. Best by 7 July 2013. Tasted 13 April 2013.

Pours a medium-pale golden orange. Crystal clear, with a sparse column of bubbles rising up. One finger of whitish head, good retention, and a nice fringe of lacing like receding waves leave on the beach.

Smell is big and fruity. Full of citrus and tropical fruits, and sweet. Oranges, pineapple, and lemon zest. Main complaint is that I'm having to bury my nose in it to get as much potency as I want. But it's really quite good.

Taste is great. Delightfully sweet, with an excellent citrus hop presence. The sweetness blends into a smooth, soft bitterness that's just a little bit less than I'd like it to be. Definitely not over-hopped, whatever the label says.

Mouthfeel is excellent. Medium-bodied, super sticky, clingy. Carbonation flares up, then slowly drifts back down. Lasting, holding that light bitterness in the mouth.

This is really good, across the board. A perfect example of what a top brewery can do with a popular style, when they set their minds to it. The main thing that separates it from my absolute favorites is the relative weakness of the smell, but that's a minor criticism.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.91/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a crystal clear golden amber in color with some light to moderate amounts of visible carbonation as well as some orange highlights. The beer has a three finger tall dense foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a thick film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of citrus/grapefruit rind, tropical/peach/mango, and pine hops over the top of slightly sweet pale malts. Some bitterness in the aroma as well.

T: Upfront there are moderate amounts of pale malts with some brown sugar sweetness. That is followed by moderate to strong flavors of citrus/grapefruit rind hops, pine hops, and just a touch of tropical/peach hops. Slightly more than moderate amounts of bitterness that lingers for quite a while.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Chewy with light to moderate amounts of dryness in the finish.

O: Overall the alcohol is very well hidden in this beer but it is a little too aggressively bitter for my personal preference - I enjoy a DIPA quite a bit but I like a little more intense hop flavors without quite as much bitterness. Easier to drink than I expected based on the marketing of the beer and one I would enjoy another time.

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Photo of JayQue
3.57/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

OK DIPA. Nothing outstanding, but a pleasant drink. Pours a clear copper color with a medium size white head. Fairly good retention, lot of lacing.

Smell is a bit mild for a DIPA, mostly grassy hops

Tastes pretty good. Piney hops and grassy hops, some malt balance, but still an overriding mild bitterness. Refreshing with no hint of the abv level.

Mouthfeel is good. The oily, piney hops and soft (Blind Pig type pillowy softness) are welcome. Good hops bitterness, overall crisp and rich enough.

I have had two reasonably priced DIPAs in the last two days. Good but no Maharajas or Double Jack s here.

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Photo of thedoubler55
3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: A nice golden orange that is a bit hazy, a nice two finger head that leaves some lacing around the glass as you drink.

S: Tropical fruit throught, a slight spicy hint on the nose as well, with some sweetness on the tail end.

T: Lots of peach up front, was not expecting that, with other tropical fruit throughout and spice like the nose, maybe pepper.

M: Medium bodied, with a good amount of carbonation and dry finish.

O: Overall this was a good brew, I thoroughly enjoyed it, very well balanced.

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Photo of 2Cents
4.83/5  rDev +27.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a large wine glass.

A: Light amber with a snow white head that reduces to a thin film. There's lots of lacing and noticeable Alcohol legs.

S: Pine and citrus with a little maltyness. There's a slight bit of yeast esters and just a little peppery aroma coming through.

T: The first thing I tasted was resinous Pine then Citrus fruit, especially orange. At the the middle tongue there is a little hit of pepper and then some of the malt comes through. Then there's is a big grapefruity bitterness that sticks around.. The aftertaste is a combo of everything.

M: Nicely carbonated. There' a peppery sting and a little alcohol bite.

O: At only $7.99 a six pack it looks like I have a new regular beer. For my taste this is a very good D.I.P.A It's loaded with hop resins and a unique, peppery taste. It's dangerously drinkable for an 8.5% beer. I put this up with some of the best D.I.P.As, that I've tried.

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Photo of WoodBrew
4.19/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The Rampant is a big full bodied IPA with smooth carbonation. The beer poured a darker amber with thick froathy head. The nose carried waiths of fresh piney citrus hops with hints of caramel malt. The taste started bitter then was quickly balanced by a sweeter malt. Alcohol was present thoughout the draw and there were hints of pine and citrus. Overall this is a non-sessionable beer but very tasty.

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Photo of nUgZ
4.18/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a clear golden color with a two finger head and excellent lacing.

S: Tons of hops up front...citrus, pine, floral, and a slight onion aroma. There are some malts in there somewhere along with a hint of alcohol.

T: Much like the nose, the taste is dominated by bitter hops. Not as powerful as some top-notch DIPA's, but the flavors are very pleasing. Somewhat grassy and on the lighter side for a DIPA. The alcohol is completely hidden.

M: Medium bodied with decent carbonation.

O: Although not as complex and powerful as some DIPA's, this is a very refreshing offering from New Belgium. This would be a great summer beer. Maybe they'll can it so I can drink some by the pool...

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Photo of andrewjraab
3.62/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear rusty nail like copper color with nice rings and stick.

S - Resinous hop notes, weed, citrus peels.

T - Follows close to the smell with the dank hop flavor, but not overpowering on the hops you would expect from DIPA. Smooth and refreshing on the palate.

O - Decent DIPA - but not the smack you in the mouth hop presence I want in this class. Worth a shot - unique in its make up.

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Photo of lordofstarside
3.89/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz to snifter, July 14 expiration

Pours a pale gold with a finger of voluminous foam, retention isn't bad, and the lacing is excellent. Pretty good transparency, has little carbonation. The look isn't best best or the worst, not that it has much to do with the final score anyway

Smells of floral citrus hops with some tropical fruit notes, along with some roses and lavender. Very submissive malt hangs back with some caramel and alcohol. Very interesting hop profile, the flora in it really has me pushing my nose deep

Those floral hops smell better than they taste. Up front hop bomb that really lacks an edge or bite, pretty light and pale hoppy taste. Citrus notes take on a bit of a melon profile, melds with the malts to bring forth a light tasting double ipa

Feel as mentioned above is light/medium, creamy and dry. Alcohol is hidden pretty well it goes down pretty smooth

Overall this is sort of out there for a dipa. I'd be good during a hot day in the summer, but aside from the aroma nothing really stood out for me. Sometimes I really wonder where new belgium would be if they didn't have Lips of Faith

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.57/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Type: 22-oz. bomber
Glass: Manzanita pint glass
From: Bine & Vine Bottle Shop in Normal Heights (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $5.49
Purchased: March 28, 2013
Consumed: April 12, 2013
Misc.: Best by July 2, 2013

Poured a golden orange color with 2-3 fingers of long-lasting pillowy white head. Bubbly liquid. Plenty of circular, foamy and layered lacing on the sides all the way down. Good retention all the way down, long and lasting.

Smelled a potent whiff of bitter hops right way. Not sure about exact hops, but generic hops were a mix between skunky resin, citrus (grapefruit) and floral. All smells come to an abrupt finish.

Tasted that 8.50 percent alcohol right away. No hiding that for sure. Taste wasn’t really like the smell, except for that massive bitter hops. Seemed to onion or radish, which is something I don’t think I’ve ever written in a beer review. Also garlic? Still some resin hops in there, but I guess there is a thing called vegetable hops. If not, there is now. Still some grapefruit citrus hops in there, albeit light.

Light-to-medium body. Creamy texture. Average carbonation. Abrupt, bitter finish.

This was an OK beer, but I was expecting something a bit better. It started that way, but the onion, radish and garlic trifecta may have swayed my opinion a bit.

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Photo of coldriver
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber pours a golden amber with good head and lacing. Aroma is lemon, resin, pine, apricot, caramel and alcohol. Taste is peppery bitter, but I'd like to see more citrus character. Very sweet. Seems a bit thin for the style. A bit sticky, drying on the finish with oversweet aftertaste. Overall not bad and certainly well priced, but you would expect more from a major release from a brewery as large New Belgium.

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3.56/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz into pint glass

A: A light white head forms and disapates above a very clear body. With consistent visual carbonatio. Some lacing. Body is pale straw to light copper, about 8 SRMish

S: Nose is at medium power level for an IIPA. None the less juicy aromas of melon and payapa, hits of grapefruit type citrus.

TM: Smooth on the front, but as the carbonation fills the body holds a thicker approach. Fruity peach and pine notes dominate the palate. The mouthfeel is left glossy and sticky. Refreshing on the front and leaves a dry firm bitterness that beckons more...

O: Overal this is a solid IIPA. On the low end of the gravity spectrum, but big hoppy nose and body and restrained but firm bitterness.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
3.66/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle, label says best by July 28. 2013. This is the spring 2013 inaugural release of this beer. I traded my friend a bottle of Great Lakes Rye Of The Tiger IPA for a bottle of this. Haven't had a New Belgium beer in a while, so I am going in as unbiased as possible.

Poured into a Firestone Walker pint glass.

A - Pours a little more than a finger's worth of white doughy head comprised of tightly packed microbubbles and some fluff. Body color is a transparent dark orange / copper. Nice sheets of thin, wispy lacing.

S - Smell is of light pine needles and some grapefruit rind. Light juicy hop bitterness and some bready malts. Some honey. Some wet cardboard. An underwhelming smell for such a high abv beer.

T - Taste is of rye malts up front, paired with some fresh bitter citrus grapefruit hops. Some bitter hop spice and some cracked peppercorns. Peach & mango hops dominate the second half of this experience.

M - Feel is light, sticky, and dry. Some resinous hops and some bitterness, but not what you would expect from an 8.50% abv beer.

Overall, a little more tame than the New Belgium Ranger IPA, considering the increase in abv. This beer drinks more like a rye IPA than it does an imperial IPA, although it is light and juicy most of the time, rather than bitter and spicy. A tasty beer, but somewhat underwhelming. Seems like it would be a good "imperial" IPA for the summertime.

New Belgium Rampant Imperial IPA ---3.5/5

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.6/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle - $1.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a clear, golden-amber body with a frothy, receding, white head.

Smell: Odd, onion-scented overtones with resiny, citric tones beyond some additional fruitiness. Bolstered pale malt base, faintly sweetish in the nose.

Taste: Sugared pale malts, boosted somewhat, but, then dosed with a conspicuous vegetal quality and a few drips of camphor oil. Some resinous, some citrusy touches, but the preceding flavors override these tastes. Moderate bitterness. Drying, bitterish, camphor oil finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium-carbonation. Feels a tad oily moving across the tongue.

Overall: I left work early on Friday to head home and enjoy some music, fun, and beer. Two oughta three ain't bad, I guess.

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Photo of Sark
3.94/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- swirling gold-orange amber with finger of tan head

Smell- big citrus notes, ripe grapefruit, little notes of pine

Taste- citrusy on the front with a light sweet pale malt with some caramel on the tongue, earthy bitterness on the finish with a little alcohol warmth

Mouthfeel- medium-full bodied, a little hop oils and a dry bitter finish

Overall- solid IIPA. New Belgium delivers again with one for the summer evenings

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Photo of Mikes-Soft-Lemonale
3.82/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The smell of the hops are great. I feel like 30 min into a brew dew, sticking my face deep down in the brew kettle and inhaling. It's got a real pungent aroma, which I'm seriously digging.

When i take a sip, I get the bitterness from the bops, the aroma from the hops, but none of the flavor. For a DIPA, it falls flat there.

the malt character is totally caramel. No smokiness, no deep malt backbone. What I get most is caramel and hop aroma/bitterness. I'm digging that I can walk into a low end grocery store in chicago and pick up a 6 pack of DIPA for less than $10. However, if this had a stone or dogfish logo on it, I'd be suprised. Value 7/10.

BTW, the 8.5% was a pleasant surprise.

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Photo of Tucquan
3.91/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had this on 2013-04-10 in Warsaw, IN

A - Clear, pale yellow with a 4-finger white head into a 16 oz shaker. Moderate-good lacing.

S - Hop floral, plenty of pine and some lemon drop sweetness. I like it.

T - Pale malt, grass, herbal spice, grapefruit zest, honey, tea. Other than the significant zest bitterness, there's not much citrus flesh flavor. I like the flavor.

M - Medium body and carbonation. A little prickly, a little creamy, a little resinous.

O - I enjoyed this brew. It has its own unique flavor, like a spicy, bitter tea with honey.

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Photo of Jparker37
3.97/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into an oversized tulip. Best by 7/14/13

S - Pine, resiny, citrus. Faint biscuit malt. I agree with the description of peachy aroma.

A - Tall rocky off-white head atop a deep golden beer. Perfect clarity. Tons of sticky lacing.

T - Bitter pine hops show up instantly. There is underlying bready/biscuity malt throughout almost the whole taste. Hop flavor is a large segment and has pine and melon like flavor. Right up to my threshold of sharp bitterness without becoming unpleasant. Crisp and refreshing dryness. Some watermelon flavor lasts into the aftertaste but later leaves me with an almost flavorless bitterness.

M - Medium-full body, very dry, light to medium-light carbonation.

O - Great looking brew with a beautiful sticky head that will not quit. Hops are the only focus of this beer, little balance to it. On a positive note it has a unique hop profile and shows off many good qualities. Pine and citrus aroma yet different than typical DIPAs. Taste was bitter all over with a great dryness. Fun take on a style that sometimes is pigeon holed.

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Photo of oscaryuengel
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A - clear golden, vaguely hazy, with a small persistent head of about 1/4 inch that sticks to the glass.

S - distinct floral hop aroma.

T - the bitterness is immediate and distinct, lasting throughout the taste.

M - medium to medium-light body.

O - a very strong IPA with distinct hop bitterness. Similar to the Ranger in terms of hop prominence but of a different type. Altogether a reasonably difficult drink, but satisfying.

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Rampant Imperial IPA from New Belgium Brewing
3.78 out of 5 based on 2,889 ratings.
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