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Rampant Imperial IPA | New Belgium Brewing

very good
472 Reviews
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Rampant Imperial IPARampant Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States | website

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: 472 | Ratings: 2,798
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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Photo of WolfsbaneBloom
4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear golden yellow with a stark white bubbly head of foam.

Smell: A very distinctive aroma of cantaloupe and honeydew melon with light, sweet peach notes and a bit of pine.

Taste: Follows the nose with melon, peach, pear, and apple as well as some honey and nectar sweetness. Pine and a thin crackery malt round out the taste. There's a touch of stinging alcohol in the finish that's accompanied with an almost rosewater-like flavor.

Mouthfeel: Fairly light bodied with low to medium carbonation.

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Photo of hardy008
1.59/5  rDev -57.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours dark gold with a bright 2 finger white head with good retention and lacing. The aroma has grassy hops, melon, onions, biscuit malt, citrus zest, and alcohol. Very unpleasant. I hope it tastes better than it smells.

It does not taste better than it smells. It tastes a bit worse than it smells. There are onions, citrus zest, grassy hops, biscuit malt, alcohol, and some melon. I'm sure New Belgium wanted to try to make something different, but they failed miserably.

Medium bodied with averge carbonation. Finishes very dry and harshly bitter. I don't understand how they can fail to hide 8.50 % abv alcohol, when other breweries hide the alcohol on beers with a higher abv. I don't think I got a bad bottle, I just think this beer sucks.

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Photo of nimrod979
3.42/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a standard pint. Best by: 8/11/13

Appearance: First of all, I don't really appreciate the un-filtered appearance. Golden in color with a bone white head. Above average retention and super thick lacing on all sides of the glass. Big redeeming factor.

Aroma: Citrusy hops, grassy, lemon, some pine and that typical malt aroma all NB beers seem to have.

Taste: First thing I taste is the sweetness, some from the biscuity malt, some fruity sweetness, Reminds me of fruit loops. Not at all that bitter like the label keeps claiming. Some citrusy hops along with the peach and juice flavor. but mostly too sweet.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, moderate carbonation. The bitterness lacks with a bit too much sweetness. ABV is subtle. Finish is sweet and dry.

Really just kind of an odd DIPA, the fruit loops thing kills it for me.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.71/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Best before July 7, 2013.

It pours a light golden colour with the usual excellence of execution with the foam and lacing that New Belgium presents.

Aromas of citrus hops, borderline tropical fruitiness, with notes of melon and a good malty backbone.

The taste is hoppy but I get more of a melon flavour than citrus, especially in the finish. I'm not a big fan of melon in any form and it seems to add a dankness to this brew that I, personally, could do without.

Some malty sweetness gets in the act here and there as does some light grapefruit but the melon is for sure dominant.

A very nice mouthfeel here and despite my misgivings about the melon, it's easy enough to drink though I doubt I'll revisit. Give it a shot and see what you think.

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Photo of Siriusfisherman
3.89/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Nice clear gold with thin head, moderate lacing.

S: Nice tropical fruit, apple/pear, spice, and citrus/pine. Malt is noticeable as well, giving some sweet graininess.

T/M: Moderate bitterness upfront, turns into spicy, tropical hops with some citrus and a little pine, as well as a large sweet, bready malt presence that took a very prominent roll in the flavor compared to other beers in the style. Mouthfeel is creamy, but dry with ample carbonation.

Overall: I feel this beer deserves a little more credit that its being given, New Belgium did a fine job. They used a very innovative hop bill, utilizing Mosaic (a new variety) and Calypso (a less known variety) and created a beer that has a very unique flavor profile. It is not the hop bomb that many people want from this style, but it does serve a role in introducing one to the style. I could see a fat tire drinker deciding to pick up a bottle of this, and not being to off put by the change to try it again, ultimately leading to another craft beer fan. Good job New belgium.

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Photo of largadeer
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Orange-amber body that's crystal clear. Pours with a two finger head that retains. Good nose on this stuff - the spicy, weedy and slightly oniony notes from calypso work well with mosaic's brighter tropical fruit aromatics. There's a bit of sweetness to the aroma, but little malt character, and that follows through to the palate. While it isn't overtly malty, it does have some sweetness to it, which highlights the fruity aspects of the hop bill. Mosaic brings a great pineapple flavor that's rounded out by the earthier, spicier notes from calypso. There's a slight grassiness mid-palate, and a touch of onion. This is fairly light-bodied and easy drinking for a 8.5%er, with well hidden alcohol. A surprisingly good offering from NB, especially coming in six packs for a very reasonable price.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.52/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a Dogfish Head Ale glass.

A bronze golden amber orange body, nearly crystal clear, with a two finger head with soapy retention. Slowly settles with capped puck, and ring like lacing. Some very small rising carbonation but not much of it. Otherwise pretty good.

Hop front on the nose is pretty non existent. Some sweet mild caramel, a little bit of hinting tangerine orange, but no sens that this is an IPA at all. Very closed nose for the most part.

Palate is kind of odd. Strawberry and pine like sweetness, with a mix of mild pine like hops. Mouthfeel is fairly solid, with a good coating resin effect and a moderate to sense of crisp carbonation. Palate quenches with a strange aftertaste of stale bread and pine. It's got a weird carbonation sense on the swallow also.

Overall it's just not what I want in a DIPA, but it's a good beer but not in the upper echelons of the greats by any close measure.

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Photo of russpowell
3.37/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

BBD of 28 Jul 13

Pours golden with 3 fingers of cream colored head. Superior lacing & above average head retention

S: Pine & orange peels

T: Grapefruit, orange peel, pine & dryness up front, with faint leafy hops & a bit of tobacco. A touch of resin as this warms along with grapefruit peels & woody dryness, plus grassyness & a kiss of breadyness. Finishes with woody bitterness, sharp grapefruit, a touch of pine & boozeyness, plus a little pear brandy

MF: Creamy, medium bodied, a bit of boozey bite as this warms. Alright balance, but gets a bit harsh as it warms

Not a great DIPA, but would buy this if options were limited. Not a bad price on this, but the hops don't really flow that well to me. Drinks as bit slow for me

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Photo of ocelot2500
2.81/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear golden color with a big, frothy white head that leaves a ring of lacing.

Smells of floral and citrus hops, but not much malt.

Tastes of some bitter hops with, not much else. Hops lead off with floral and citrus notes along with an earthy spiciness. A kind of leafy vegetable like note comes through as well. Very little malt to speak of with a little breadiness. Leaves me wondering if they completely forgot to add a few bags of grain to the mash. Hops are there, but are just left out to dry with no malts.

Mouthfeel is medium-light with a crisp amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a swing and a miss. Very little malt makes it just seem like tea and not beer. This reminds me that to make a good IPA, you do need to pay attention to your malt character, and can't just throw all the hops you want into the brew.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.6/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

thanks mike! enjoyed from a new belgium snifter/globe.

a - brew poured transparent yellow orange with a thin oily yet foamy ipa head that left streaky lacing.

s - very balanced malts crossed with subtle citric hopping. clean, even a bit soapy.

t - wow, very interesting...fairly sweet and fruity. not fruity like hoppy, but fruity like pineapple and apple and some green grape. interesting for an IPA.

m - soft and easy drinking. fairly sweet.

o - overall, easy drinking. ABV is evident in the sweetness, but that's it. very fruity in an interesting way.

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Photo of Beaver13
1.22/5  rDev -67.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

12 oz bottle. Pours clear straw gold with a big fluffy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is a lot of plasticky onion with some dank peppery hops and a little sweet malt.

The flavor is a little sweet bready malt followed by a ton of vegetal plasticky green onion that has decent bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and a bit watery.

Overall, I don't care for this at all. It's a bunch of watery onioney / garlicky hops (summit?). Like a very poor man's Gubna. From reading other reviews, I wondered if I got a bad one, since all I get is onion and no fruity piney hops. But the 6 pack tasted the same - I dumped one of them. It tasted similar on draft too, just more subdued and watery.

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Rampant Imperial IPA from New Belgium Brewing
85 out of 100 based on 472 ratings.
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