Hop Session India Pale Ale
White Birch Brewing

Hop Session India Pale AleHop Session India Pale Ale
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
American IPA
Ranked #6,345
Ranked #38,711
3.67 | pDev: 12.53%
White Birch Brewing
New Hampshire, United States
Hop Session India Pale AleHop Session India Pale Ale
Notes: Hop Session is in. Starting with a blend of west coast hops for a balanced, bitter effect. We close the session out by late hopping the beer for a nice resiny mouth feel.
Reviews: 79 | Ratings: 275 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of nealien
4.04/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great west coast style session IPA. Had this on tap (fresh keg) at the brewery. Strong taste of piney, resin-y hops for a session IPA.

Update: found this at a Wegmans in Medford MA and picked up a 6 pack of cans. Was just as delicious as it was fresh in draft. Love this beer, it’s a solid west coast style.

 311 characters

Photo of sulldaddy
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampling a cellar temp 12 oz can poured into a snifter. The beer pours a slightly cloudy golden color with a little bit of white sediment and a bright bleached white fluffy head of 4 cm foaming up. The foam fades slowly to a sturdy a sticky edge layer and some surface fluff. Aroma is a bit of grainy malt but then decent amounts of pine sap and a bit of grass and lemon. The nose isnt overpowering and isnt amazing but good enough. The first sip reveals a light body with fine tingly carbonation and a silky texture. Flavor is some rindy and pine sap hops with a bit of grainy malt buried but the finish is back to grapefruit rind. As expected in a session IPA I dont get any hints of booze on this beer.
Its a very drinkable brew and leaves a lingering bite. A nice session brew even if its not amazingingly complex.

 822 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.57/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I just closed out my entries for New Beer Sunday (Week 657), but I am on a bit of a roll so I am CANtinuing with this beer. The CANQuest (tm) is back in action and New CANpshire is now in the crosshairs!

From the CAN: "Our ales are unfiltered, unpasteurized and traditionally made, Best served fresh at 50 - 55 [deg. F]"; "At White Birch Brewing, our goal is to create great beer for the enthusiast. Each batch is brewed and bottled by hand at our brewery in Hooksett, New Hampshire."; "Hop Session is in. Starting with a blend of west coast hops for a balanced, bitter effect. We close the session out by late hopping the beer for a nice resiny mouth feel. Best when fresh, this beer is not intended for cellaring."; "Crafted in small quantities to be savored for any occasion. We hope you enjoy this unique beer. [undersigned] Bill Herlicka, Founder".

The Crack! revealed a brimful craft CAN, so I went with a very gentle Glug in response. It is getting late, I am getting tired & the last thing that I want to have to be involved with is cleaning up a spill. Once properly deCANted, a vigorous in-glass swirl raised two-plus fingers of dense, foamy, tawny head with decent retention. Color was Golden-Amber (SRM = > 5, < 7) with NE-quality clarity, prompting a visit from The Gelt Gang of Midas, Croesus & Mammon. Nose had a grapefruit-citrus quality, but I have been led astray by aroma hops in the past. The proof of the pudding is in the tasting. Mouthfeel was thin & light, not exactly watery, but not much beyond it, either. The taste was lightly bitter, grapefruity, but not very intense. It is another victim of being lumped in with the AIPA style where it would fare better, IMHO, as a Session IPA. To put this up against some of the great AIPAs that I have CANsumed is to do it an injustice, but such I must. Finish was semi-dry & refreshing, but it lacked the hoppy Ooomph! that the better examples of the style bring. Not bad, per se, but just not my cuppa tea. YMMV.

 1,984 characters

Photo of Lonborgski
3.41/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From 12oz can to tulip glass
Unfiltered, cloudy light caramel color
Smell of sour hops
Taste follows nose. Slightly sour, funky, hoppy, IPA
Feel is unremarkable
Overall, the sourness is not to my taste. I generally look for lower alcohol beers, but this one is too funky for me.

 278 characters

Photo of tone77
2.96/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A thanks goes out to the creator of the canquest, woodychandler, for this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, light hops. Taste is also mild. Light malts, some lemon, hints of pine, damn near no bitterness. Feels light bodied in the mouth and overall is mediocre at best.

 323 characters

Photo of NolaHopHead
3.57/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can. Opaque orange pour, thin head fades quickly to nothing. Belgian funk yeast and pine in the aroma. Taste is similar with strong piney grassy hops and saison funk. Medium slick mouthfeel. Not my favorite style IPA but not bad tasting at all.

 255 characters

Photo of Czequershuus
4.47/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours an opaque brownish orange with a sizeable head. The aromas of pine, spruce, lemongrass, wet hay, and white pepper. The flavor leads with a mild hint of pine, followed by a barnyard funk mingled with lemongrass and cilantro, ending with resiny pine on the swallow. The mouthfeel is buoyant but chewy from the highly unfiltered broth. Overall this is an awesome and different IPA with a huge whack of herbal and farm funk.

 436 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.82/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz can.

A: Deep amber-copper body is a shade darker and more hazy than expected (i.e., than typical). The creamy off-white head has very good retention and leaves exceptional lacing.

S: This is the weak trait of this otherwise fine IPA. Hoppy, but a bit too dank and earthy

Taste: Does not follow the nose, instead having a nice mix of herbal, floral, citrus and evergreen hop notes with enough caramel and other(?) malt to give an appropriate bitter-sweet balance. Moderately complex.

Feel: Medium body and medium+ but soft carbonation.

Overall: an excellent session IPA, although at 5% ABV this a the upper bounds of "session".

 659 characters

Photo of chefdave37
3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer I had out of a can poured into a pint glass a murky golden color. It has a yeasty smell and taste losing any hops flavors. Light to medium feel. Overall it is ok session but lost the hops.

 198 characters

Photo of metter98
3.52/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is slightly hazy amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high white head that died down, leaving a patchwork of bubbles on the surface and a thin collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of Belgian yeast are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has flavors of Belgian yeast. No bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer tastes a lot more like a saison then it does an IPA. Both the smell and taste are dominated by aromas and flavors of yeast—not hops.

Serving type: can

 656 characters

Photo of Billolick
3.94/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can, w/ not dating info that I can find

Pours lightly hazed medium amber, frothy and loose light khaki head that stays and leaves quality looking low sheeting and nice relaxed fields of lace on the glass.

Leafy hop nose.

At 5% this is on the more robust side of the "session " IPA world.

Well hopped, fresh tasting and quite enjoyable. Light grapefruit, some resiny notes. All in all a real nice beer and in a can...win win ... go get some

 454 characters

Photo of sperk12
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had the pleasure of trying this beer while visiting RI, at Doherty's East Side. It came in a 12 Oz can and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would rank it up there with some of the other top session IPA out there and it more than held its own again the other beers I had, which included MO from Maine Beer Co, Hoponious Union FROM Jack's Abby, and flower Power from Ithaca Brewery. My only regret is now that I am back home in Texas l can't pick up more. Enjoy

 459 characters

Photo of Ian_B
3.44/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Maybe I got a bad batch. Smells phenolic and slightly acidic like a saison. Taste is pleasantly soft but lackluster and somewhat muddled, with a strange tart/piney combo on the finish which just doesn't really hit the mark.

 223 characters

Photo of brunop
2.84/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

i found this an acceptable in a pinch session ale. most all session IPA's seem to me to be pretty much indistinguishable. i'll just stick with notch and founder's for all-day imbibing though.
edit--the last one in the six, i had to drain pour.
maybe i got a bad six. . .

 270 characters

Photo of NJM
2.67/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

From a can, not dated.

Pours murky dark orange, bordering on brown. Not a good look. Settles into a hazy dark orange in the glass, decent foamy head.

From there I'm not sure what happened with this one. Oxidized? Strange choice of yeast? I'm picking up primarily saison-like phenolics. Mouthfeel is rough, leaving a very undesirable astringency to finish.

I just started seeing this one around in cans, some I'm presuming it's only 2-3 months old.

 451 characters

Photo of JAFoley
3.84/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - hazy pale amber body white foamy head. Nice retention and sudsy lacing.

S - grassy citrus hops

T - grapefruit, grassy, dank bitter hops with nice earthy woody aftertaste

M - light body with moderate carbonation. Slick and somewhat watery.

O - honestly I'm surprised to see this rated so low. The mouthfeel is weak as you'd expect from a session. But the flavors are great and makes for a very drinkable 6 pack.

 421 characters

Photo of SierraFlight
2.21/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

Bottled in February 2014 tasted at the end of October. This one’s going to be stale. Bomber into nonic pint. Copper body with off-white finger high head. Some patches of lace. Aroma is dim caramel malt, some citrus, and earth. Taste is muted bready sweetness and muted floral bitterness. Medium body, a notch in the direction of thick texture, average carbonation, astringent finish.

 385 characters

Photo of zeff80
3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle. Poured out a clear, golden yellow color with a small, white head of foam. It smelled of caramel, pine and citrus. Nice toasted caramel taste with bitter citrusy hops.

 179 characters

Photo of AngryPenguinBrewCo
4/5  rDev +9%

Served on tap in a pilsner glass. Pale golden color, nice clarity. Good carbonation with medium white head. Good hop presence, with pine/ resin the dominant flavors. Overall a good session ale.

 193 characters

Photo of risendragon
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I am a huge fan of White Birch and this one I have surprisingly not tried, until now. Poured from a bomber into a standard dining glass with no refrigeration.

A- Hazy orange, very bubbly. Head is extremely prominent even with my pouring style and that detracts quite a bit from the beer.

S- Citrus, big time. Grapefruit stands out the most with lemon and pine taking a backseat. Beautiful aroma.

T- Taste does not really follow through with the nose. Bitter up front with malty caramel finishing. The citrus is there but mainly lemon and even some blood orange in there, grapefruit flavor comes through towards the end. I was expecting more though based on the aroma.

M- Resiny finish, not really cloying but very misleading given the amount of carbonation. I do think it's over-carbonated for the style, but that's a personal preference I think.

O- Not a bad IPA but really nothing to write home about either. I think it's a bit to sudsy for the style but the flavor profiles are nice and fit the style well. Definitely a good "starter" IPA.

 1,047 characters

Photo of seedyone
2.21/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

07/27/11 Company blurb says: "a blend of west coast hops for a balanced, bitter effect. We close the session out by dry hopping the beer for a nice resiny mouth feel."

Not my kind of thing. I prefer clean and crisp. The "resiny mouth feel" made me feel I had kissed a tree...hugs maybe, but never a kiss on the mouth, thank you very much.

 339 characters

Photo of HuskyHawk
3.72/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bomber. Hazy, golden amber color, very thin head. Nose is fruity, dates, figs, almost Belgian. Taste is light, no prominent maltiness and the hop profile is of grass and herbs. Mouthfeel is nicely weighted. Bitterness is fairly restrained and ,softly presents in the finish. Nice IPA, but not great. Very drinkable.

 329 characters

Photo of superspak
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled in 2/2014. Pours lightly hazy bright orange color with a 2 finger dense and rocky white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big mango, tangerine, peach, lemon zest, orange peel, floral, grass, caramel, light biscuit, and floral/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with good complexity of bright citrus/tropical hops and moderate malt balance; with good strength. Taste of mango, tangerine, peach, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, caramel, light biscuit, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of floral/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of mango, tangerine, peach, lemon zest, orange peel, floral, grass, pine, caramel, light biscuit, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice complexity and robustness of juicy citrus/tropical hops and moderate malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, crisp, and moderately sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish as expected of 5%. Overall this is a damn nice session IPA. All around good complexity and robustness of juicy citrus/tropical hops with moderate malt balance; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,462 characters

Photo of BMFR1811
2.72/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Purchased a single bomber style bottle on 03/29/14 in CT. Bottle said that it was bottled march of 2013. Served at 58 degrees.

The pour initially showed a high level of carbonation as it was almost completely foam. It took a long time to pour the bottle into my glass because I had to allow the foam to drop.

Appearance: Amber beneath a thick head and thick lacing on the sides of the glass

Smell: No hop aroma, just malt.

Taste: Initial taste is malt. I don't taste any discernible hops, there is a a lingering bitterness. There is a faint citrus that is barely noticeable. Not bad, not great just okay

Mouthfeel: over carbonated for an ipa, the carbonation would be more suited for a hefe or a cream ale. That's being said it still had good body.

Overall: not a good example of an ipa. I would like to try a fresh one but I think the one I bought might have been stale since I didn't get any of the hop flavors and aroma that I expect from an ipa. I would classify this as an amber ale and not as an ipa

 1,015 characters

Photo of CHickman
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Lark in East Northport, NY; pours hazy yellow color with a 1 finger white head that faded on the quick side and left OK lacing.

Smells of light grapefruit, lemon zest, citrus hops, floral hops, a hint of caramel, coriander and light grains; basically all citrus with a nice malty backbone.

Tastes like it smells with grapefruit, lemon zest, citrus hops, floral hops, light caramel, coriander, pepper, malt and lightly toasted grains; nice flavor and balance with a smooth, easy drinking flavor.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp, with mild carbonation, a light body and a slightly bitter aftertaste that's a combo if citrus and malt. Perfect session beer, but flavor is nowhere near Founders All Day IPA but still a good beer overall.

 749 characters

Hop Session India Pale Ale from White Birch Brewing
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 275 ratings