Wisdom Seeker
Black Raven Brewing Co.

Wisdom SeekerWisdom Seeker
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Style:
American Imperial IPA
Ranked #386
ABV:
8.9%
Score:
93
Ranked #2,411
Avg:
4.2 | pDev: 8.81%
Reviews:
51
Ratings:
197
From:
Black Raven Brewing Co.
 
Washington, United States
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  52
Gots
  20
SCORE
93
Outstanding
Wisdom SeekerWisdom Seeker
Notes: Folklore and mythology present the raven as an omniscient creature with special powers and abilities. The Wisdom Seeker Double IPA gets its special powers from an enormous amount of hops and malted barley. Brewed in the West coast Double IPA style, this bold brew features massive citrus and herbal hop additions and a full hop aroma. Seek your wisdom cautiously; this hop feast packs a punch. Released annually in the Spring.
Reviews: 51 | Ratings: 197 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of beergoot
4.06/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Deep copper hued body; immensely dense and thick head; sticky rings of foam climb down the glass. Big grain and pine aroma mixture; caramel. The taste encompasses malt sweetness and earthy, bitter hops. Heavy body; crisp and prickly on the palate; bold residual sugar presence; mainly dry mouthfeel throughout.

A fine double IPA, balanced and heavy with malt presence. The hop element provides a nice counterpoint to the grain sweetness. Nicely done...

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.25/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a speiglau IPA glass.

Look is a clear reddish orange with a billowy off white head.

Aroma is orange and bubblegum a little bit of a weird mix but works.

Taste is a piney orange with hint of bubblegum at the end. Delicious.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.34/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I poured this into a tulip. There is no date on it. The appearance is a clear amber to light red in color. There is a fluffy white one and a half finger head that dissipates within about a minute in spots but maintains a lumpy sort of look in other spots. Decent carbonation is seen rising at a moderate pace. The smell has a fair amount of honey flavored citrus hops with a decent herbal to earthy dank aroma combining and backing it all up into a nice tight fulfilling quality. Very nice! The taste is combined well between the citrus hops and the honey to showcase a very nice bittersweetness. The aftertaste is honey sweet with a quick dry sweet finish. On the palate, it sits about a medium in body with a decent sharpness from a normal DIPA but still leads me on with a nice "West Coast" maltiness that is somewhat smooth and ends up coating my mouth and tongue with a touch of honey. Overall, I get it. This is a very nice West Coast DIPA that is very reminiscent of Hopslam but in the West Coast sort of way. By all means, I would have this again in a heartbeat.

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Photo of ManapuaMan
3.83/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Floral, citrus, malt. Split a bottle three ways with friends. Amber pour with nice clarity; solid tightly packed head with good lacing. Aroma of pine, resin and fresh cut citrus beneath the bottle cap. Taste is a heavy dose of hop-driven tropical and pungent fruit flavors with piney and pithy undertones. Prominent caramel and sweet cracker malt base comes to the fore. More balanced than what I expecting. The malt and alcohol-warmth adds a heftiness to the feel of the beer. Drinks clean and crisp with a slight lingering bitterness. Good beer.

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Photo of woemad
3.65/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle purchased at Mid-Columbia Wine & Spirits in Kennewick, WA, for $8.95. No freshness date, and the label is completely different, and incidentally states the abv is 8.9%, for whatever that's worth.

Poured into a Mad Bomber pseudo-IPA glass, this was a moderately clear, orangey amber color. There was a big, fluffy white head that took it’s time dropping. Lots of lace.

Big, citrusy, bitter, grapefruity nose to this.

The taste starts out as a grapefruity blast to the palate. Midway through, things get decidedly piney and bitter, and finish with a dry zap to the tastebuds. Good, but somewhat one-dimensional.

Medium bodied, with a resiny, oily mouthfeel.

Yet another Black Raven beer that does everything it’s supposed to, yet nothing remarkable. It did look great, but it’s one dimensional bitterness doesn’t make me feel like going out of my way for it in the future, and didn’t justify the price.

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Photo of Rogerlb
4.21/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

By the way I got a different bottle design, darker green bg on the label with more hand-drawn line drawings with than the one pictured here.

Pours a nice orange/amber with very little head. Lacing is spotty and alcohol legs throughout the drink. Aroma is a rich hop bomb, with citrus and some malt. Taste right along those lines, mostly hops at the onset, bitter is there but not overload. Dank, pine, lemongrass, and oily resin. Very nice. Booze in there too. Finish goes a little sweet, malt, mostly sequeing back to a dank hoppy pine and soap (not complaining).

Resiny and oily, booze is warming without too much heat. Feel is great. A solid and quite fine imperial IPA.

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Photo of cavedave
4.24/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed 4/15 with DrunkinYogi,. Thanks again for the amazing beers, kemoarps. From notes.

Cloudy dark gold with a thin off white head. Has that classic west coast look.

It's a full on citrus blast and hop funk party for the nose with this baby. Hop. Funk. Yes. Please.

Well why not have a citrus and hop funk party on palate? Indeed, it is a great party, with some righteous herbal pine bitter to dry it out. I mean, of course, DRY it out.

Medium carb., med. viscosity, clean, dry as a bone finish, what more can man ask?

Spectacular beer. Highly recommended. Get you some.

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Photo of RJLarse
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I bougth a bottle of Wisdom Seeker in a Kirkland Grocery store. Poured in to a tulip glass.

Pours a rich copper gold color with a thick white head.

Smell is faint, an acerbic wet grain aroma.

Taste is a balance malt and hop flavor, sweet bread up front woth a bitter pine finish.

Mouthfeel is remarkably clean for the style, with a dry bitter finish not cloying at all.

Overall a nice dry IIPA. Well done by the folks at Black Raven.

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Photo of gandres
4.41/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tap to glass @ brewery tap [email protected] Redmond, WA
Appearance: Golden light amber, long lasting white head, lacing
Aroma: strong scent of hops
Taste: Sweet, low bitterness
Feel Palate:
Overall: very good beer good to repeat and to look for
Drank April 5, 2015 9pm

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nice orange pour, 1/5" white head. All the dry hopping citrus aroma going on. Taste kept kicking down those tangerine, orange and grapefruit notes. Kept the bitterness from becoming a distraction.

Good light body, hides alcohol, not overly caramel or bitter. This is what upper echelon ipas/dipas do, and this one does it well.

Surprised you don't hear more talk about this one, then again, every region has an adequate substitute for this beer.

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Photo of Pauken
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sorry west coast guys but I've yet to run into any "west coast" IPA's that really compete with what's happening out east these days... Tree House, all the VT stuff, Pipeworks, Half Acre, Hoof Hearted and the rest of the Ohio stuff... Pliny is in the ballpark...

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Photo of kemoarps
4.09/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful deep russet clear crisp amber body with a mountain of off white head. Gorgeous.

Nose brings light fruity and floral notes. As it settles in the spicy more blunted (dull not dope) side of the hops comes out. Malt compliment is rich caramel initially but then cedar and neutral notes take over.

Flavour brings classic west coast style with rich juicy hops supported by a thick caramel base. Bitter but not overwhelmingly so. Hops are spicy pepper and juicy citrus. Definitely pithy, and I don't mean it gives good dialogue. Finish is like a slowly tightening grip that lulls you in with the balance and accessibility of the body of the beer, but slowly peels away layers until you're left with an herbacious bitter finish that lingers. Burps bring some of the juiciness back.

Good body, appropriate carbonation. Yum yum!

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Photo of hreb
3.72/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle served in pint glass. This year's bottle claims 8.9% ABV. Immediate, massive pine-hop aroma emanates as soon as the bottle is opened. I think there might be some dry hopping here. Peer pours pale golden in color, not quite clear, with a healthy white head. In addition to the resinous pine there's also a tropical fruit thing going on. Flavor is BIG West coast IPA, aggressively bitter. My mouth is filled with sticky, resiny flavors of pine and citrus, with hops seeking out every corner of my palate. This is not an IPA for anyone with reservations about West coast IPA. Nor a session DIPA (ha!).

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden yellow in color. Clear in appearance. Drinks light. Bitterness on the back end. Hops don't jump out at you. Grapefruit, pine and orange zest.

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Photo of mabermud
4.23/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Amber/gold body. The look is reminiscent of an IPA. Light in color, crystal clear. Uninspiring smell. Wet socks. Faded orange and old 7-up. If the smell was uninspiring, the taste is inspiring. Balanced tropical flavors that are mushy...soft. Maybe I should say, the flavors are intricately woven together. Nothing explodes, no 500lb bomb...this is a cluster bomb with juice. Mellow flavors. Laid back Imperial IPA. The feel is right there, on target. Nice carbonation throughout, easy body.

Overall - Excellent. Nice look, decent smell, great taste, awesome feel.

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Photo of lochef81
3.99/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up as a wild card in a recent west coast buy. It pours a golden amber color with a decent white head that leaves little lacing. The aroma is a nice west coast hop aroma. Notes of pineapple, red grapefruit, and pine are prevalent. There's also a very generous amount of malt present in the nose. The mouthfeel is medium to full and sticky. I feel like it could actually use just a touch more carbonation. Flavor is a nicely balanced blend of bitter hops and sweet malt. Its good, just a little sweeter than I like my dipas. Glad I tried it but not one I'd go out of my way to get.

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Photo of jlindros
3.22/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to rudzud for giving me this bottle to try.

Pours a nice creamy 1 finger head that fades at a med to slower pace, nice soapy lacing, long rings of lacing, semi hazy but mostly clear honey golden color.

Nose is a mix, some nice hops and some not so nice, starts with a little citrus and tropical notes, little juicy tangerine and papaya like, but that quickly gives way to the bad, some rancid hop oils, lots of hop oils and resin, some piney earthy and a little musty cat piss, lots of forest floor pine and herbal tea like hops. Under that is a little candy malt note, little sweetness.

Taste is also sweet, candy malts come right out, little syrupy and some candy sugar, even a touch of a maple syrupy like note but not really a mapley flavor. With that is a touch of booze warmth, and some phenolic notes. But the real player is the hops again, big earthy herbal hops, again that cooked vegetable like note and rancid hop oils, quite an unpleasant hop chracter I think, with some chewy spicy like hops, forest floor pine and earthiness, like chewing on the moss and pine needles, mushrooms, etc, on the floor. Quite bitter overall, that even brings a little briny taste, and booze with some esters. Finish is sticky sweet, more booze warming through with a little ester, lots more hops with chewy herbal forest floor flavors and cooked hop oils.

Mouth is med to fuller bod, decent but lighter carb, mild warming booze, little sticky sweetness.

Overall not good, malts are OK, booze is OK, but the hops are just bad I think, it's like you take the worst profiles of most hops and throw them together in this beer. The initial quick attempt at citrus was so quickly smashed I almost forgot I even got it in the first place.

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Photo of rudzud
3.7/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Received as an extra in a trade and poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a nice crystal clear golden straw hue with a two finger rocky white head that faded to leave light side lacing and a thin blanket. Possibly the clearest DIPA I've seen.

S - Aromas of softer malts and hops, faint herbal tea notes, light caramel, candi, pine.

T - Taste is quite bitter / astringent. Pine is there, same with grapefruit pith. The bitterness is almost clashingly so, and I think it makes the alcohol stand out more. Definitely feel the ABV,
light caramel malt, faintly sweet, herbal hops. Really bitter finish.

M - Mouthfeel is a bit lower carbonated, really does not help to hide the alcohol.

O - Overall, this one threw me for a loop. Was expecting something really stellar but yeah, the alcohol was a bit much.

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Photo of FalconOne
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am very grateful to my lovely wife for bringing back four bottles of this excellent DIPA from Black Raven Brewing Company, from her was on a business trip to Seattle last week. The aroma is truly outstanding and the taste is what one would expect from a remarkable West Coast DIPA.

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Photo of John_M
4.49/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled (repeatedly) the other day at the Washington cask festival. Described in the program as "extra wise and firkenized."

The beer pours a somewhat hazy peachy amber color with suprising good head retention and consdirable sticky, creamy lacing all around. The nose is quite lovely in this beer, with a considerable amount of tropical fruit (smells like there's a lot of mosaic hops in this bad boy), but with noticeable citrus and pine as well. This smells like a serious DIPA, something that I was able to quickly verify on the palate. The flavor profile deliverys a lof of apricot and peach in this beer, but with a considerable back bone of orange citrus and pine as well. The finish is quite long and bitter in this excellent DIPA, and the alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile.

Excellent beer, and one I'm very glad I finally had the opportunity to sample.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.94/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: golden hue with a haze-free body and a moderate effervescence. Head is a thick finger of frothy ivory foam with decent retention. Quite good!

Smell: citrusy hop character with a grainy malt underneath. Enticing and well-balanced, but not mind-blowing.

Taste: sweet malt with a dank, citrusy hop character. A little bit of graininess and astringency comes in at the end. The finish is a little more syrupy than bitingly bitter. It's a tasty brew, but doesn't have the crazy-good character of a great DIPA.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a big, well-integrated carbonation and a very good creaminess for the style. Kudos.

Overall: a very tasty and drinkable DIPA. Sweet with a nice fruity hoppiness, and not overwhelmingly bitter. I'd definitely have this again.

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Photo of Justin_Neff
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 4/16/2013.

A: This one is a beauty. Completely translucent light golden body with a silky, thick, bright white head that leaves nearly a full layer of lacing on the glass.

S: Tons of pine and citrus. Smells like strong fruit and hops.

T: Dank. The bitterness lingers. Tons of hops and sprucey pinecone overpower what normally sticks as a citrus strength. The taste and bitterness of lemon and grapefruit peel finishes the mouth wonderfully. The balance is really nice.

M: Full body, but surprisingly drinkable for a DIPA. Oily. Sticky. Medium Carbonation.

O: Wow, was I pleased with this one. Great west coast DIPA. The balance is incredible for being so hop forward but also pretty sweet and resinous. So happy I got to try this one.

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Photo of jmarsh123
2.69/5  rDev -36%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours clear orange-ish color with a good cap of creamy white head. Good retention and a touch of lacing.

Very pine and resin forward. A bit of candied grapefruit as well with some floral notes. Good sticky and dank aroma.

And now the let down. Definitely leans west coast style although there is a bit more malt than in most in that classification. Starts out with a touch of citrus before it's enveloped by bready malts and pine. A weird sweet bread flavor clashes with the hops. Very astringent finish and every bit of the 9.0% ABV shines through then some. Booziness is overwhelming by the end.

Sticky medium body with medium to low carbonation. As mentioned, does nothing at all to hide alcohol.

Not sure why this beer is getting glowing reviews. In my opinion, it's a decidedly below average DIPA. The aroma is very intriguing, but the taste is an absolute mess. 9.0% feels like 12.0%. I've never had a DIPA that seems to add ABV before. There's also a weird sweetness that clashes with the alcohol. Decent hop profile, but is lost behind the booze. Ended up pouring some down the drain as it got to be too much. Very let down by this one.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz bottle, split

Served in oversized Karmeleit glass - fairly light bodied with a huge sticky white head. The alcohol is omnipresent as is a permeating sweet citrus flavor. Moderately bitter, big grapefruit hop bite, pine, sugared ruby red. Quite good, but a bit rough around the edges.

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Photo of draheim
4.46/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22oz (bottled 4/16/2013) into a tulip. Pours a crystal-clear copper color with a big frothy white head. Lazy carbonation rises from the bottom.

Aroma is a big burst of clean citrus and pine. Smells like Pliny.

Taste is dank, sticky, and resinous. Tons of hop oils, held together by a solid backbone of clean pale malt. More pine and citrus. Alcohol is well-hidden. Great balance.

Mouthfeel is oily and sticky, about right for a big DIPA. Nice bitterness on the finish, but this one is also pretty sweet.

Overall this is about exactly what I hoped for and expected. Wisdom Seeker is world-class, about as good as any other DIPA out there. The real deal.

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Wisdom Seeker from Black Raven Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 197 ratings