Wachusett IPA (India Pale Ale) | Wachusett Brewing Company

287 Ratings
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Wachusett IPA (India Pale Ale)Wachusett IPA (India Pale Ale)

Brewed by:
Wachusett Brewing Company
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
With an awesome floral nose, & fresh hop flavor, “The Purple” is one of the most sessionable IPA’s out there. Beer Advocate calls it, “A damn solid IPA”.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-07-2000

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 287 |  Reviews: 148
Photo of tigg924
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: 1/2 inch head, high carbonation, gold in color, clear, a lot of nice lacing

Smell: citrus hops, brown sugar, and malt

Taste: light citrus and floral hops mixed with some toasted malt

Mouthfeel: semi-bitter with a sweeter finish, high carbonation, light bodied

Drinkability: This is a nicely balanced IPA that I could have several of. The hops are there but not overpowering. Nice, light, and refreshing, I will pick this up again.

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Photo of Daktyls
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got a free Wachusett pint glass when I picked up a mixed 12-pack of Wachusett brews, so I'm drinking it from that.

A: Fairly translucent, pale golden in color, a little head foamed up after the pour.

S: Aromas were somewhat lacking to me, but I could detect a faint scent of hops and some citrus.

T: Hints of caramel and bready malts, hops were present in the finish.

M: Not very bitter, slight amount of carbonation.

D: Very drinkable, goes down easily.

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Photo of deereless
3.19/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Sea froth foam, light copper color, signs of lacing - 4.00, S: Aromas are somewhat on the mild side and what I am picking up is slightly medicinal and with a hint of tartness, I'd worry that the beer is on the downside though the date clearly indicates otherwise - 2.50, T: Mild to medium hop bite, crisp and dry, herbal hops as well as some pine on the palate, some faint graininess, the medicinal flavors on the nose didn't seem to impact the flavor as best I can tell - 3.50, M: 3.50, D: A decent IPA, the nose was a little unpleasant but otherwise solid - 3.00

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Photo of donniecuffs
3.08/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hazy amber, with barely a finger of white head, and spotty lacing. The smell was very, very mild in terms of hops; little citrus...more herbal and caramel. Taste was exactly like the nose, with a bitter finish. Decently carbonated, medium-bodied, but for some reason, it just didn't do anything for me. Needs a better hop cocktail.

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Photo of williamherbert
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy golden yellow color. Lots of carbonation. Rocky light brown head; excellent head retention. Honey-colored. Actually looks downright excellent.

The smell is flowery perfume hops. Hint of citrus (lime, orange). Roasted, dark caramel malts; dry and bready. Earthy.

The taste is toffee and bready caramel malts on the front. Earthy like a sandbox. The hops come in at the end, and add a needed bitterness. Like an English IPA with extra woody, flowery hops.

The feel is a great medium body. Smooth and buttery; lasting, but not intrusive. The hops in this beer are American, but the strong roasted malt balance puts this over the top.

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Photo of lonestar4lunch
3.28/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into my Goose Island IPA glass. Good, 1 1/2 inch head that quickly settled to about a fingers worth. The aroma on this one seems to come and go. Could be the ol' sniffer but it isn't too strong. As far as taste I am not getting the strong citrus but the grapefruit is there just a bit along with the drying on the back of the tongue that is expected. Having never heard of this brewery before my trip up north, I am glad I picked up a variety back. This is nothing great but one I could enjoy all night if on tap.

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Photo of sholland119
3.7/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a hazy amber with a thin tan head, good retention and lacing.

S-Moderate floral hops and caramel malt.

T-Caramel and biscuit malt with floral hops in the finish. A little light in hop presence.

M-Light to medium bodied.

D-Nice enough but one is probably plenty.


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Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 ounce bottle poured into my nonic Imperial pint glass. This IPA appears a hazed golden amber color with an inch of lingering off white foam. Aromas and flavors consist of herbal, earthy hop notes, citrus such as orange peel and lemon complete with their essential oils, nicely caramelized malt, mild toasty bread. Mouthfeel is full of hoppy bitterness at first, followed by a decent amount of sweet malt to smooth things out. Carbonation is right around medium. Certainly worth a try.

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Photo of Kendo
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got it on tap at the Wachusett Country Inn, where it was advertised as a "California-style IPA." Sounds good to me. . . .

A: Body is coppery-orange with a small whitish head that left behind some lace.

S: Pleasant hoppy experience on the nose: pine and citrus (especially grapefruit).

T: Light biscuity malt followed by hops -- pine and citrus again. Drying bitterness at the finish, with lingering lemony/citrusy hops.

M: Medium weight with decent carbonation.

D: Very good. I think I had 4 of them over the course of the night and they all went down easily.

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Photo of albern
3.92/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a decent IPA but nothing I'm getting overly excited about either. It pours a very clear slightly amber color with a thin head, not much retention, and no lacing. There isn't heaps of carbonation going on with this beer either. The nose is leafy hop, some slight grassiness. Right out of the bottle I got some off aromas of diacetyl and maybe some mustiness too. Things improved as the beer settled. There are some orange rind, some orange burst in the nose as well. The aroma does improve after awhile.

The taste is good, but not brilliant. There are leafy, somewhat drying hops, there are some orange blossom and estery notes in there too. The beer does not have a substantial malty backbone, or any bready characteristics, so the beer is left a bit watery. There aren't enough nouvelle type hoppy tastes in this beer to forgive some of the light bodiedness. There is a slightly salty sharpness towards the finish, and the beer has a some drying tendencies there too. The aftertaste is a bit too lingering. The mouthfeel is a touch watery. This is a good IPA, just not brilliant.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Obcenely boring label. Copper color with a white fluffy head. Sticky lace all over and good retention.

Smells of Juicey Fruit hops and faint sweet malt.

Tastes of fruity hops over not so meek sweet malt with heavy bitter in back. The sweet and fruit make this beer like hop candy. Juicey Fruit aftertaste and hop oil mouth coating. Medium body and crisp mouthfeel.

What a pleasant suprise! I'd always viewed Wachusett as an average brewery surviving on a solid blueberry ale, but their IPA may cause me to revaluate.

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Photo of chinabeergeek
3.36/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. notched on the label for "may", but no year.

pale amber gold with straw tones. clear. large foamy head slowly fades to thin lade. decent lacing, especially later on.

apple aroma with light caramelized malt. some weak citrus zest and pine.

malty caramel and apple in the flavor, a moment of diacetyl, balanced by a grassy hop with only hints of citrus and pine. light to medium bitterness. hints of more apple, yeast and caramel in the finish.

smooth, with medium body. gentle to moderate carbonation has prickliness upfront, balance and lift later.

this is really more of an english IPA. however, the label on the neck advertises a beeradvocate 2007 quote, calling it a "damn solid American IPA".

sorry. no way. not really even for an east coast american IPA. i would have rated this as an english IPA, but the brewers themselves seem to insist categorizing it as american in style. at their own peril...

NOTE: lol, something must be amiss between me and akorsak... there must be some crazy, magical stuff happening to the beer in transit, for him to consider it "hoppy"...

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Photo of akorsak
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to tai4ji2x for this 12 oz bottle.

A: The IPA is a bright amber color, buffeted by a finger of rocky head that is quietly lacing around the rim of the glass.

S: The IPA has a crisp citrus aroma that shows off orange and lemon peel notes.

T: The IPA is robust, hoppy with a well-grounded malt profile. Citrus peel is dominant with an oily resin finish. Leafy tobacco flavors follow the peel with an herbal finish. Caramel malts have a full bready taste that follows the hops. More leafy hops flourish at the end of the sip.

M: The mouthfeel is pleasantly hoppy, resiny with a chewy malt finish.

D: The alcohol is moderate, assisting the drinkability. The sharp hop profile doesn't hurt things either.

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Photo of bhalter8
4.09/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, again, to Reagan1984 for this one, the final of my NE IPA sampler trade! Pours a vibrant copper/orange color with a foamy, strikingly white, 1 1/2 finger head. Head quickly fades leaving almost zero lacing. A rewarding sniff of the brew offers a unique (at least in my opinion) sweet citrus balance to the hop character. I really liked the smell of this one. Obviously, citrus is no rare aroma when using certain hops, but sweetness of this citrus scent is what set this beer apart. A very nicely balanced flavor. The malts balance with the hops to offer a decent hop kick upfront, that mellows as you enjoy each sip. I'd call it medium carbonization, and a overall tart mouthfeel. In the end, a fine IPA, with some rewarding uniqueness to it.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One finger of white foamy head forms and has some decent retention. An orange/amber color with nice clarity. Very bright. Some light carbonation is visible. Spotty lacing rings in the glass.

Aroma is fresh and a nice combination of floral light citrus hops and toasted malts. Almost lemon light.

Really nice. Well balanced. A initial quick fruit burst, then some nice cracker and toasted malt flavors. This gives way to a nice hop bitterness that is crisp and lingers nicely.

Mouth feel is fairly light. Carbonation does bring the flavor to life.

Extremely drinkable. I enjoyed this more then I remember from my last bottle....

A good IPA.

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Photo of yossarian14
3.82/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Copper colored with a slight haze. Average head, retention, lacing. Unremarkable
S - Very citrusy hop aroma and sweet malty base
T - Biting rind bitterness in the middle but a sweet front and dry finish.

An easy drinking, sessionable IPA. A quality brew for hopheads and non-hopheads alike.

non-hopheads - i think i just coined a horrible phrase, i should buy a thesaurus.

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Photo of 0110x011
3.19/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Corey0212 for the opportunity.

A - Pours crystal clear gold. Fluffy, off-white 4-finger head lasts a good while, leaving gobs of sticky lacing behind.

S - Some pine and grapefruit hops, and a dash of caramel. Not particularly aromatic. Pretty mild, actually.

T - Bits of grapefruit & pine, some caramel & honey. A bit bready. Very mild. This is an IPA?

M - Light bodied. A bit too thin.

D - I could take down a sixer of this stuff, no problem.

Slap the words "Pale Ale" on this and it would be a killer session ale. But an IPA? I think not.

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Photo of badbeer
3.82/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark yellow with a white head and some retention and lacing. Aroma is fairly hoppy with some citrus and a touch of caramel and biscuit. Taste is much of the same, but the hoppyness comes out stronger than in the nose. Nice hoppy finish to this one. Medium carbonation and body. Good beer, could probably drink a fair amount of this. Thanks to hopdog for the sample.

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Photo of maddogruss
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a bottle of this into a shaker glass.

A: Pours a hazy, light amber body with a small, white head with ok retention and some lacing.

S: Sweet, citrus, malt smell with some earthy, bitter, hop notes.

T: A fairly bitter, earthy, and hoppy taste with a pretty smooth, citrusy, malt backbone.

M: Medium-bodied beer that was pretty smooth. The carbonation was a little thin, but it was a decent beer overall.

D: A nice mouthfeel an taste combination made this beer pretty drinkable. Pretty good IPA overall.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.92/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at a Massachusetts wedding. Had a choice between this, Coors Light, and SA Octoberfest...

I'm poured an attractive, amber-orange IPA with a slightly hazy body infused with tiny bubbles that fuel a well-retained, fluffy cap of manila head. Nice lacing down the sides of the plastic cup. The aroma was excellent--lots of floral, grapefruit & citrus hops balanced by a sweet caramel malt presence.

Although the flavor probably fit the "Pale Ale" category better than an IPA, it was still quite tasty, with breaded, biscuity malt notes (slightly nutty) hitting the palate with every sip. Bursts of spice and citrus peel were dispersed throughout, but really didn't shine until the aftertaste. Muted, but a nice floral hop note was saved for the finish. Mouthfeel was crisp, medium-light in body, and well-carbonated. Considering the circumstances, this beer hit the spot, and complimented my Roast Beef well. Of all the lackluster wedding beers I've been faced with, I can honestly say I wish this brew were at every one.

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Photo of FACSman
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Nice golden amber with a full thick head and beautiful step lacing.

S - nice floral hoppy aroma

T - Nice and crisp, what an american IPA should be!

M - Good amount of body without beeing too terribly heavy.

D - Wonderfully drinkable, a hell of a lot of flavor for a 5.6% beer

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.17/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this as a beer of the month in New Bedford, MA.. only $5.99 a six pack!

A well above average IPA, super hoppy in aroma and taste and it's all well balanced. It's a bit low in the ABV so it's pretty drinkable but it's very clean, crisp, and refreshing. Sadly, no other Wachusett beers are available around here in CT.

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Photo of koopa
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle received in a trade with Reagan1984 thanks!

A-Golden orange with a 1 finger creamy white head with good retention and modest lacing.

S- Sweet citrus and bready malt coupled with a mild floral hop in the nose

T-Bread notes up front followed by floral hops and then a citrus zest wave that soon subsides. the hops are not aggressive in any way. this is definitely a traditional east coast usa ipa taste. Good thing for that citrus zest taste, without it this brew would be overpowered by sweet malt.

M- Felt a bit thin probably due to a lack of carbonation and really dried out my mouth.

D- Very drinkable because of how much it dries your mouth out and the mellow nature of the hops. This is an easy IPA to session with.

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Photo of changeup45
3.38/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is a solid IPA. Dark orange color, nice sticky head, with a lot of lacing on the glass. Grapefruit hoppy flavor and a bit sweet but could have used that extra little kick. Definitely a good all around IPA though and I would certainly get it again.

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Photo of chemmie
3.46/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It pours a light amber color with a little white head that leaves a little lacing behind down the glass. Not too harsh of a smell. A little citrus from the hops, but not too much. The taste is the same. Not too bitter, but the hops add a nice grapefruit taste that stays for a minute. It isn't too bitter to make you pucker up, just enough to leave a good taste in your mouth. This is pretty drinkable and light. It's an IPA that you could drink a lot of on a hot summer day. Not too much flavor, but enough to make it taste good.

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Wachusett IPA (India Pale Ale) from Wachusett Brewing Company
3.74 out of 5 based on 287 ratings.
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