White Hawk Select IPA | Mendocino Brewing Company

540 Reviews
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White Hawk Select IPAWhite Hawk Select IPA

Brewed by:
Mendocino Brewing Company
United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
White Hawk Select IPA is a traditional India Pale Ale. We’ve blended American West Coast Cascade Hops with a very generous dose of English Fuggle Hops. This combination makes for a very aromatic character, as well as a truly authentic English flavor which you must taste to believe. “Hopheads” will love this brew!

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-19-2002

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Reviews: 540 | Ratings: 910
Photo of cambo61
4.73/5  rDev +40.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Xmas gift from the boyfriend of my flight attendant. In PHL. Not sure where he picked it up. It came as a 6 X 12oz bottle. Packaging was lame and unremarkable.

The first beer I've reviewed. After drinking a number of good IPAs I've found my most recent favorite and first one worth reviewing.

I'm a fan of IPAs in general. This is not excessively hoppy, like "hopslam" or something of that order. White Hawk is has an incredibly bold front with a citrus hop finish. The hopp blend is without a doubt like orange rind.

It poors clear with a solid honey color. The head is frothy and tenacious. The lacing sticks around until you clean the glass.

The bold malty front reminds me of "Amarillo Brilo" at "Peace Pizza" in Chicago. Midrange you get prepared for the perfect balance of citrus hopp. Sometimes IPA's have no front end and give it to you at the finish. Not White Hawk. You are completely covered.

Not fizzy or overly carbonated.

I can't get enough. This is the only IPA I can drink without a break. I don't need something in between to snap me out of the hopp grip. I have never been this satisfied with a beer. The 7% ABV is never noticeable and drinks smooth.

I wish I could find this around STL.

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Photo of Arithmeticus
4.48/5  rDev +32.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured chilled in ale glass.

A: bushy, foamy head; clear copper color; great lacing; great carbonation action
S: large bouquet of hops in the aroma
T: aggressive, biting hops; very bitter; malt downplayed; bitterness endures in aftertaste

Overall a really solid IPA; not sure why I liked this more than other reviewers did

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Photo of stirgy
4.4/5  rDev +30.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A fruity citrus bouquet emanates from this clear and pale golden brew. Topped with a very creamy white head. Pleasantly crisp with sweet grains, lemony sweet and slightly oily. Leaves a citrus tang on the tongue. This beer is deceiving - although this beer looks light, it’s very flavorful and a pretty intense IPA. Finishes with a sweetness, although my preference would be a little drier in that aspect. A beer with guts. I like it.

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Photo of sagito327
4.36/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy amber with a light head

S: Nothing particularly great about the smell--smells like your typical IPA

T: The taste was great. Light, fruity flavor with an intense hoppy finish.

M: A very thin beer, but the aftertaste tickles the tongue and makes you remember it was there.

D: Very drinkable for an IPA. The 7.0 ABV will bang you up pretty good if you are not careful though.

I was really impressed by this beer. It was $6.50 for a six pack and ended up being one of the best IPA's I've ever had.

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Photo of mempath
4.35/5  rDev +29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a nice orangey semi-opaque color witha nice sticky head.

smell hints at a wallop of hops but oddly masked by a maltiness one might find in a traditional IPA...

...which is a trick because this delivers a nice blow, one i think might scare off those who fear hops, but seems quite balanced considering the alcohol (7% !). sticky, bitter finish is preceded by a creamy thick mouthfeel that sparkles crisply with the carbonation making it's stand. there is also an initial dry quick finish, but let it linger and other notes become revealed in a second wave. nothing extremely complex, but another nice everyday 'hopped' up brew that is a real bargain.

very drinkable and a great year round, 4-season brew!

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Photo of TastyTaste
4.35/5  rDev +29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a very lightly colored IPA that could be mistaken for a lager on looks alone. Gold, slight copper color. Smells pungently of grapfruit hoppiness. Very delicious. Every sip let my mouth watering, and afterwards I had the hop burps (or horps, to coin a phrase). All around delicious, not an off-flavor to be found. $2.49 for a bomber, very good value.

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Photo of lester619
4.32/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very nice looking cloudy dark orange to brown with about two to three inches of thick brownish head. Excellant pungeant fragrant herbal hoppy smell. I'm a huge hop guy and love most IPA's. I have never heard of this one, but it is fantastic. The taste is very fresh and spicy. Herbal bitterness is abundant, but there is great substantial malty bready sweetness as well. Lots of rasin type flavors that remind me of Hop Ottin. Anderson Valley Hop Ottin is one of the best beers in existance, so this one is doing pretty good. The mouthfeel is very soft and pleasant, almost a soft wheat-like feel to it. This makes for a very enjoyable drinking expiriance. Overall this is a great example of an American IPA.

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Photo of Chris_Cali_2o9
4.3/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams cup

A- Yellowish orange body with a 1"of fluffy white head

S- tropical fruits, butterscotch, metal, biscuit malts

T- Caramel, butterscotch, metal, orange, tropical fruit, with a lingering grapefruit bitterness

M- Almost creamy medium body, nice carbonation

O- Signature butterscotch and metal, found in pretty much ever brew from mendocino, which i love. There's so many things going on here, with the caramel, butterscotch and biscuit malts, to the tropical citrusy hops. They're all so nicely balanced, allowing me the opportunity to experience the creamy, decadent malts, and tropical fruit hops.

The west coast is flooded with IPAs, DIPAs, and IIPAs with no unique malt backbone. Most likely to satisfy the masses (which most likely explains this beers sub par rating) i personally, having tasted most of what the west coast has to offer in this catagory, base my ratings on uniqueness and the supporting malts. This is an excellent example of that and recommend it to all, tired of the same old, Cascade drenched, IPA.

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Photo of rabidawg
4.29/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Lemony, sunshine yellow with a creamy white head that disappeared quickly. Left minimal lacing.

Smell: Bright, citrusy hops. Definite sweet malt background, but the hops paint the picture. Nice spiciness, with peppery, wit-reminiscent notes. Yeast is apparent.

Taste: More spicy, grapefruit hops. Surprisingly refreshing sweetness, with a lingering cascade flavor, but not as bitter and dry as most. Very tasty, and maybe one of the most drinkable IPAs I've had.

A typical AIPA? No. Enjoyable nonetheless? Definitely. Crisp and refreshing, and a perfect summer beer.

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Photo of JamesS
4.29/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The best of the mixed pack.

Pours a nice orange/amber color with decent head and good lacing. It has a wonderful scent, very hoppy, with the great citrus aroma of cascade hops, a wonderful floral scent. Great taste, too, a wonderful combination of American and English hops, it has a great bitter taste with slight hints of citrus. For such a hoppy brew, it goes down really well.

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Photo of Skidz
4.21/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber, no freshness date.

Pours out a light bright gold and sits copper amber in the glass with a wonderful gradient in the fluted glass (pale gold to deep amber). A large white head sits on top the bright and colorful beer below with great lacings all over.

Smells distiguishedly malty and full of hop aromas. Light fruity notes of pears and apples run around the field of mildly citric yet predominately herbal/floral hops. Lively and energetic, very enticing.

Tastes quite malty and sweet up front and produces a bit of a sharp hop bitterness. Short lasting, this bitterness offers a few hints of lemon and grapefruit oils, but is dominated by the large malt character. Notes of caramel in a doughy build-up creates the gist of this beer. Finishes strong on a malty note, though a fair amount of hop oils linger on well after swallowing.

Wonderfully smooth in the mouth with soft and delicate carbonation. Such a great feel to this one, about a medium body.

This is a very good beer, but as an IPA, it falls quite short. Malts dominate the mouth, leaving litte room for hops to give a good show. Still, it's an excellent beer, whatever style it may actually be, and worthy of prime drinking vessel; another qualifier for a large fluted glass. Cheers!

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.2/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light golden color with a half finger head that melts quickly.
Aroma faintly malt and faintly citrus.
Taste is initially sweet malt then immediately overpowered with fresh citrus hops...orange peel and grapefruit with a little alcohol taste.
Aftertaste of grapefruit drying and slight alcohol.
Alcohol burn is noticable for a while after you swallow.
Probably not a spectacular IPA...more like a standard American IPA but very fresh and assertive. I hate to call it middle of the road because I've tasted many bland IPA's or forgettable ones. This is a good beer. Perhaps the best I've tasted from this brewer.

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Photo of plinythethirsty
4.2/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

O.K. She ain't that purty and she don't smell that special, but I'm happy I asked her to dance.
Supposedly based on "the original IPA recipe" (a brief history of which is provided on the label), this beer gives you: (1) more malt on your tongue than hops; (2) a rich, nourishing grain-malt taste: and (3) enough mouth-puckering hops to hold a hop- head's attention while savoring the hearty sourdough flavor. It has a toothy, pleasant finish and an invisible 7% abv. I'll have another.

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Photo of bradybeer
4.2/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hurry pour me another! Pours a light brown/gold with medium amounts of carbonation and medium head. Hops comes through on the pour.

Smell nice citrus hops, taste light malt with hops finishing strong. Taste is excellent with a malt hops balance. Mouthfeel is light which is good for me in an IPA. Drinkability? Oh my, I can't wait to pick up a sixer. I will need to make a tasting with the Blue Heron to see if the original is better.

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Photo of donmonkey1
4.2/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Note: I drank this at room temperature and it really should have been chilled.

Appearance: Dark yellow, Large bubble white head that recedes quickly, good lacing, good carbonation.

Smell: nice floral, seems quite drinkable and not too crazy.

Taste: Some sweetness in the floral brew. A very drinkable IPA, nice flavor, not much bite, but enough.

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Photo of hwwty4
4.2/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 12oz bottle into my lucky Chimay Chalice. Pours a hazy golden with a nice, fluffy white head. Aroma is piney hops with just a hint of orange peel. Wow, this is a really tasty IPA. It almost tastes more like a DIPA then its little brother. Big on the piney hops with a malt backbone that balances the big hops very well. The hops are big up front but mellow out into the sweet malt. Mouthfeel is full for the style. I bought this as a single and I think that I'm going to have to seek out a sixer of this beer.

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Photo of GeoffRizzo
4.18/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dull gold with a thin coating of an off-white head; active bubbly carbonation. The nose is pine hops, and some floral notes. Oily and sticky up front. Bordering on medium bodied. Major piney hops are in command; subtle citrus notes in the way of orange peel and warmed grapefruit juice. Warming provides some decent malt backing, with tingy hops still dominating. A distinctive hoppy bitterness, alcohol noted throughout. A session-able-IPA all the way.

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Photo of Boilermaker88
4.18/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presented in a 12oz brown bottle with a head and chest picture of an albino hawk on the label. Poured a hazy orange color with lots of carbonation and a sturdy, foamy white head. Head had some of the best retention I've seen; it never faded away and left nice sheet lacing.
Aroma was a pleasant blend of citrus and mild pine scents over a modest malt base.
Taste was plenty hoppy but not overpowering. Started with a solidly malty flavor which quickly gave way to a bit of grapefruit and pine flavors. Finished with a nice clean hoppy bite.
Feel was medium-bodied, smooth and clean.
A really enjoyable example of the style. Not an über-IPA with enough hops to snap your tongue off its rollers but rather a well balanced, tasty offering. Another solid beer from Mendocino Brewing.

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Photo of mmmbeer
4.17/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with no freshness date. It pours a dark amber with medium carbonation and a finger of off-white head that leaves some lacing. There are caramel, molasses, and biscuity malts in the aroma along with grapefruit, mango?, and some sweet, dark malts. On the palate it's bitter grapefruit, pineapple or mango, other esters, light pine, a medium bitterness, and a big malt backbone that becomes lightly buttery toward the end. The body is medium and fairly smooth with a medium to long finish. An IPA that's up to par in my book.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.15/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – Light orange in color with a slight haze. The head frothed up nicely and hung around for a while, lacing the hell out of my Ruination glass.

Smell – This smells somewhat complex. It seems almost evenly balanced between malts and hops. The hops have some sugary sweetness to them, and the hops seem mostly floral with a hint of pine.

Taste – Wow, this is terrific! The malts are indeed sweetened with refined sugar along with some lovely caramel notes. The citrus hops join their cousins, Flora & Piney, to make up a fabulous profile. There’s even a little bit of black pepper to this IPA.

Mouthfeel – Bitter and dry but very refreshing. This ale is medium-bodied and extremely well-balanced.

Drinkability – Clearly I enjoyed this one much better than most of my BA Brothers. I will definitely buy again and keep on hand.

Update – I rated the ’03 vintage on New Year’s Day 2004, so here it is December of ’04 so I thought I’d give it another look. I wouldn’t change a thing about the descriptions or ratings from my original entry. I really enjoy this complex, balanced sample of the style.

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Photo of ralree
4.15/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice gold color, 2-finger white head with great lacing and good retention.

S: Nice hoppy barley smell, sticky sweet brown sugar in there. A bit of fruit to back it up.

T: Great hop flavor, pretty grainy as well. The bitterness is great. Not all that fruity, which is nice. Barley and hops can be tasted for a long time.

M: Pretty creamy for an IPA, but it's nice and dry. Medium body, carbonation good. A tad bit astringent.

D: Goes down very easily. I'll be buying this one again.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
4.13/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - A thick 3 finger head that lasts about 5 minutes leaving a thick three layered ring of lacing behind. The beer itself is a hazy orangish copper copper.

S - Floral hops, lillies mostly with a vey smooth pine and caramel malt backing. A pleasant aroma.

T - At first taste there is a bit of a caramel malt with a lighter floral backing which quickly evolves into a potent floral (lillies again) flavor. The bitterness is mild and dominated by the floral elements. It is a very good flavor.

M - Thin, carbonation is a bit high, mildly refreshing.

D - Pretty good here too. This a pleasant flavorful IPA. I can't remember the last IPA that I have had that is comparable to this. It is delicious and drinkable. I love it.

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Photo of hoplover82
4.12/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a slightly hazy deep golden color with a medium white head that swiftly dissapates to a think film on the beer but leaves pretty good "lanky" lacing.

S-The aroma is nice and strong. I wouldn't call it "pungent", but it is strong enough for a good IPA. It is mainly floral and sweet orange zest citrus fruits in the nose. Then after it sits a while, it slowly fades to a sweet biscuity malt aroma. Very nice indeed.

T-Sweet light crystal malts along with some nice clean bitterness and lots of hop flavor. Mainly floral aspects in the flavor. Also I do pick up some pine notes as well.

M-Full bodied and creamy, with a noticable dryness in the finish. And a bitterness that lingers oh so well.

D-This one is almost sessionable, but the 7%abv sneeks up on you. So I gave it a 4.0 for drinkablity. It goes down very nice. Although, there is a wee bit of hot alcohol in the nose and flavor, so it's not perfect but very good. I liked the experience.

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Photo of dhd1491
4.1/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy amber with thick off-white suds. Good lacing; good overall appearance. Aroma is inviting, though light.

Taste is robust; medium-heavy bodied: They didn't skimp on ingredients. Tending toward the grassy, sour-hops side, there is enough sweet malt and caramel in there to balance things off.

Alcohol, though a potent 7%, is light on the palate.

No unpleasant aftertastes. Mouthfeel is a little buttery-oily. Also not unpleasant.

All in all, a very enjoyable IPA. A nice surprise, since I don't think I paid that much for this 6-pack. Sometimes, the cheaper IPA's don't pack enough hops for me. I'm going to look for another 6-pack of this to do some follow-up research!

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.1/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the first IPA I've had in 10 months since being in India. Mad mad mad props to Traquairlover for sending me a six pack of IPAs. I was almost scared to try it....
Pours a nice, smooth copper color, a bit hazy. Ah, looks good. 1/2 finger head forms and stays for a little bit. I didn't have a pint glass, but I used a juice glass that was a) clear and b) more slender. I don't think it affected the taste too much, or the smell. Aroma was lovely. Some floral and pine mixed together. A bit metallic, too. Nothing overpowering, just pleasant.
Taste: Dry on the tip of the tongue. The pine and floral flavors come up right after that. A slight slight hint of caramel and tea, but the dryness starts moving to the back of the tongue, pushing aside flavors. Yet the dryness is good to me. A bit metallic and woody at the same time. Pine, citrus and hints of earth. I love it
I had to slow down when drinking this. It was nice.

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White Hawk Select IPA from Mendocino Brewing Company
3.37 out of 5 based on 910 ratings.
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