Felony IPA | Prism Brewing Company

140 Ratings
Read the review
Felony IPAFelony IPA

Brewed by:
Prism Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Felony IPA is an English / American Hybrid double IPA that features more European hops than American. Brewed in an English style to maintain a malt backbone and coming in at 10% ABV, 100 IBU’s and using 10 hop varieties to give it that American attitude Unlike those traditional IPA’s that hit you in the face with citrus, we prefer to sneak up on you with an amazingly smooth 100 IBUs of piney, earth, and citrusy hops and high octane 10% ABV. This translates into an experience that should be illegal.

This beer is one of the few beers in the world whose base malt is Low-Lox, an anti-oxidation malt that provides superior shelf-life and flavor stability which we believe is of utmost importance when making IPA’s. Learn more about the Low-Lox malt that we use.

We decided that although we love our West Coast brethren, we wanted to make our double IPA a bit differently. Our anti-reinheitsgebot perspective made this ‘illegal’ in our books so we made it the first of our Prison series. Originally a limited release beer it quickly became such a hit that we decided to make it available year round.

Added by BigMike on 11-11-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 26 | Ratings: 140
Photo of Bellerophon
4.75/5  rDev +34.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From 12 oz bottle to pint glass.

This beer is incredible! My first two criteria for an IPA are hop bitterness and bitter/malty balance, and this beer has both turned up to 11! Outrageous excess in perfect balance! My only reason for giving this beer less than a 5 rating is that something better may conceivably come along.

 324 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.57/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Prism Brewing Company "ParTea Pale Ale"
at the brewery on 9 April 2016

Notes: Hazy amber body with golden highlights beneath a creamy head of off-white. Aroma expresses mainly sweetish and caramel-tinged malt with floral, leafy/grassy, and citrusy hop notes. The flavor is fuller, delivering a solid toasty and nutty malt base along with some more hop character, mainly pine. There's a touch of yeasty fruit as well (apple), and a massive bitterness and slap of alcohol. Balance is not the strong point here, nor is focus. The maltiness might be good on its own, and the hoppiness might work as well, but together they just get muddy. It's very bitter and it lingers heavily, but more importantly, for a double IPA there aren't enough hops in either the flavor or the aroma - and I know where they're going with this, as a kind of English strong ale, but it comes off as sloppy and muddy. If they took this recipe down halfway to about 5% ABV it would probably work, but as it is it's anything but focused.

 1,007 characters

Photo of Mind4Mud
1/5  rDev -71.6%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Ordered this DIPA at a pub on draught. I'm not going to get into look,feel,head or lacing for the fact that this beer tasted like they brewed a sub par IPA and added grain alcohol to finish the batch. As I raised the glass all I could smell was alcohol & all I could taste was alcohol and with absolutely zero hop punch. This beer even gave me that warm chest burn from the alcohol. Next time I want to taste that much booze, I'll do a shot. I do not recommend this beer at all.

 478 characters

Photo of Myotus
1.85/5  rDev -47.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 1.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle (best by date 20Nov15) into a Spiegelau IPA glass.
LOOK: Pours with a half finger's worth of off-white foam that halves itself after a minute and a half. Honey orange in color with a moderate amount of cloudiness. Rising bubbles are medium in size and moderate in quantity. Lacing is thin and subtle.
SMELL: This smells like straight lime Pinesol, grass, and a hint of alcohol.
TASTE: Mild flavors of bready malts initially enter and are instantaneously followed by mild flavors of lime Pinesol. Subtle floral hop and grass flavors come in last as malt flavors persist, but Pinesol flavors grow slightly stronger. At least I couldn't taste any alcohol.
FEEL: First of all, I feel like I'm drinking poison because of how bad it smells and tastes. But continuing... Light-bodied (let the disappointments stack up) and subtly carbonated. Goes down smooth. Finishes with the worst dryness I have ever experienced in a beer.
NOTE: The only felony about this beer was about how bad it was.

 1,009 characters

Photo of wunderbeer
1.66/5  rDev -52.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

This beer is a disaster. While I like a good DIPA, this was a muddled mess, with a weak ester / methanol smell which permeates the taste. There is no focus to the hops, just an awful bitterness that that compliments the a doughy alcohol base.

It may not be a felony to sell a beer like this, but should require public service. To be clear, this beer just knocked Wild Blue off my worst 10 beers list. Don't buy it. You'll regret it all the way to the sink, where you'll pour it out.

 491 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #84 (Jan 2014):

10 hop varieties? OK, but it was impossible to pick any one hop out, as the flavors did not jibe well with the juicy, estery 10% ABV. Both the malt and hops seem muddled here, and with the moderate level of carbonation, none of the flavors are able to really follow through. Decent, but a bit of a hot mess.

STYLE: American Double IPA
ABV: 10.0%

LOOK: Hazed amber hue, thin lacing

SMELL: Juicy, taffy, tropical fruit, faintly buttery, cake batter, soft hop resin, orangey, alcohol

TASTE: Thick medium body, light carbonation, semi-sharp hop bitterness, thick hop resin, esters, juicy, slightly dank, pineapple, doughy malt, nutty yeast, warming alcohol, leafy hop aftertaste, finishes on the dry side

 774 characters

Photo of scottbrew4u
3.79/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This beer is smooth on the palate and then the bitterness does sneak up on you and slam your mouth. The base malt is biscuity and dry and the alcohol remains hidden well. It is a very interesting IPA and one unlike any I have tried. I would certainly try this again and I am happy to give these local guys my business.

 318 characters

Photo of TKEbeerman
2.13/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 1 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.25

I'm only rating this beer beca use it was so terrible BA is making my write a review. The nose is pure rubbing alcohol. The look is okay at best thin head no lacing. The flavor is a mess of bad alcohol, astringent bitterness, and no malt background. Absolutely terrible.

 271 characters

Photo of ShaneHarris
4.5/5  rDev +27.8%

One of the best DIPAs I have ever had. It's called Felony because it's 10% and by tasting you'd think it was a 4%, and by the time you realize it's 10%, you would have committed a Felony! It's an awesome beer, and I would recommend this to even the non-IPA drinkers.

 266 characters

Photo of Bouleboubier
3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

(best by 01/17/15 - poured into a balloon)

L: the clearest brew I've seen by Prism - only a mild, dull-polished haze... ultra-frothy/sudsy white foam with a soapy shine, doesn't stay long in pad-form - collects as many larger bubbles on one edge of the glass... I do believe this beer has legs

S: their signature character can be found here - must be the yeast... woody malts, exotic flowers, dried grapefruit peel... little bit of perfumy booze poking through in the back... slight peppery notes highlighting the fruity aromas, as well as a touch of hippy b.o.

T: lemon/yellow-grapefruit, herbal-like, concentrated bitterness to the hops that stuns the tongue, while the dry, toasty malts sneak around its sides and dance on the back of the palate... the bitterness stings, while the alcohol rubs salt in the wound - after several sips, all that's left to taste is high-test lemon polish - good stuff, though

F: has Prism's characteristic porcelain smoothness in its light-medium body and soft, dry finish... very easy drinking, even at 10%

O: not all that bad... if their goal was to make the most bracingly-bitter IPA they could, I think they've done it

 1,161 characters

Photo of dacrza1
4/5  rDev +13.6%

DATE REVIEWED: August 31, 2014... GLASSWARE: Maudite snifter... OCCASION: Labor Day celebration begins early... APPEARANCE: intimidating dark, murky burnt sienna body that hoists thick, foamy off-white head; lacing stratifies beautifully and with balance... AROMA: explosive hop bomb that borders on pure syrup--but the cone is legitimately a west coast varietal; welcoming despite its intensity... PALATE: full-bodied, somewhat crunchy--but highly drinkable at 10 ABV! incredibly long aftertaste... TASTE: the hops are strong though not aromatic; the malts are present but not noticeable; a rather middling effect, with heat overtaking the profile ...OVERALL: impossible to say this is better than Two-Hearted or Heavy Seas, but third place in the roommates IPA challenge isn’t too shabby considering the competition--this packs a warming wallop, a powerful albeit more singular profile than other BIG IPAs...

 915 characters

Photo of mvanaskie13
3/5  rDev -14.8%

Poured into an ale chalice: color is opaque copper, head is white and presents 1/2 inch thick then dissipates to a ring with some light lacing.

Smell is lightly boozy, with hops not too aromatic on a cool pour, malt is lightly sweet.

Taste is not as boozy, with malt sweetness presenting and hop flavor somewhat muddled. Maybe the hop mixture complicates flavor identification. Fruitiness definitely comes through as strong from the strength and fermentation.

Mouthfeel starts harsh but is subdued as it warms, creating a softer presence on the tongue.

Overall, a good beer to try but seems to muddled in its idea, the hops are just bitter and the malt flavors are a touch too sweet.

 688 characters

Photo of reebtaerG
3.54/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had sample at SN Beer camp Philly

A-Pours a deep hazy orange. Light dissipating head.

S-Aroma was on the light side of floral hops and grapefruit.

T-Taste is a mix of floral and some citrus hops.

M-Mouthfeel was a light body and medium to low carbonation.

O-Overall not a bad DIPA, just not great.

 304 characters

Photo of CervezaSnob
1/5  rDev -71.6%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I don't know how this beer got so many good reviews: this is one of the worst beers I have ever had. Coming from Philadelphia I'm spoiled with Victory, Yards, and Philadelphia BC so I thought I would try another PA beer. I thought the wrapping was gimmicky with the cartoon 50's greaser but I thought I would try it out. The color is a murky amber with a very very slight head that disappears. The taste is what really killed me. I love IPAs they are my favorite beer, but I wan to be punched in the face by hops when drinking one let alone a double IPA but I got none of that. All I could taste was lacquer thinner like I was making a new surfboard and some malt then bad bitter not the good kind. I was being nice giving this beer a 1.

 737 characters

Photo of justintcoons
3.27/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle poured into a tulip pint.

gold with hardly any head to speak of. Decent clarity with suspended yeast particles throughout. Light carbonation.

Sugar coated grapefruit, melon, bubblegum, apple juice, honey, lemon, lime, and caramel.

Bubblegum, sugar coated grapefruit, apple juice, honeydew melon, lemon pith, and lime. Caramel and honey. Wintergreen and wet pine on the finish.

Medium-plus bodied, smooth, warming, and moderately bitter.

A lot of melon, apple juice, bubblegum, and honey. So it's a bit off from a more classic DIPA. Pretty smooth for 10%. Maybe throwing 10 hop varieties into a beer isn't necessarily the best way to go.

 694 characters

Photo of BoozySmurf
3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one looks and smells like a typical hoppy ale. Mouthfeel is thin for style and actually welcomed as some IPA/DIPA's are thick malt bombs. I'm guessing attenuation is higher with this one especially considering ABV. Taste is of fresh hops, piney and citrusy. Alcohol taste is undetectable though its effects are not lol. Overall a great beer, $9.99 for a sixer at Wegman's. This brewery is about 10 minutes from my home, will check it out for sure!

 452 characters

Photo of beerthulhu
3.96/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

- 10 hops, 10% abv, 100 ibus.

A: A great sized building head rests above an autumn orange colored body. A strong sense of effervesce rages within. Head retention is rock solid, lengthy in stay and leaves big clumpy patches of lace on the glass.

S: Nose showed a brief moment of tropical fruitiness and caramel, sweet and wet sense, fresh, very nice.

T: Flavor had a sweet lemony pine start, fresh citrus, wet with some spruce and warm toasty caramel. Tropical fruitiness with a finish of a small alcoholic lemon warmth. Warm pine, evergreen and a fading mint flavor.

M: Prickly mouthful, active carbonation, body leans on the light-medium side.

O: Overall like the fresh and wet approach, sweet and smooth start, citrus, nice complexity of hops that accent and play off one another rather then clash like so many other examples that overload the hop bill. The alcohol is near undetectable, with a very high rate of drinkability, multiples are not an option but a must and given. Tasty, sweet flavor forward hop palate, not dry and overly bitter like the norm, very good and a crime to miss. So far a newer offering that seems to be flying under the radar but for how long.

 1,182 characters

Photo of Dix90
3.1/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Appearance: amber orange with almost no head which disappears almost immediately. Carbonation bubbles disappear quickly, next to no lacing.

Smell: sweet and caramelly, more English hops are present, hard to decipher the American hops used.

Taste: Malty sweetness with a mild bitter presence. Flavor lingers well, pleasant but not impressive. Alcohol presence is decipherable but subtle.

Mouthfeel: Much heavier than I was expecting from a signature dipa.

Overall: easy to drink, especially as a dipa. Not what I was expecting but a flavorful beer nonetheless. Probably would buy again, but not often, especially when I'm in a hophead mood.

 644 characters

Photo of Gregaroo
4.25/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

10-13-15 - Two years (maybe to the date) after my first stop here, I'm back after a bad round of business golf. This beer is so good - right from the teet. Served in a short tulip glass due to the high ABV. Aroma, smooth feel, and taste, above all, are oh so good. Get here. Great vibe at this somewhat hard to find neighborhood brewery (it's in the back). Get here.
5-20-16 - On tap at The Landings in New Hope, PA. Here with my bride for our 27th! Had to again this local double IPA to kick off the night. Tasty IPA from Prism.

 544 characters

Photo of Gavage
3.76/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: orange in color with a minimal head that breaks down pretty quickly.

Smell: caramel and malt sweetness, with some grassy and earthy tones.

Taste: caramel, pear, some grapefruit, grass, a nice bitterness that isn't overboard, and a milder earthy flavor arrives late. Alcohol is pretty well hidden here, but is warming.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Light crispness to start, dry and smooth at the finish. Long lasting aftertaste as the flavors linger in the mouth a while.

Overall: a dangerously easy to drink DIPA with just the right amount of hops that compliment the beer.

 594 characters

Photo of thebigredone
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Jason (and Jennifer) for hooking me up with this. Never heard of the beer or the brewery, should be fun to try.

Pours a deep orangeish-gold with a thin white head that quickly dissipates.

Smell like earthy hops, maybe a tinge of sweetness coming through. Not much happening on the nose.

Taste is better - this does not whack you in the face with hops, but there is definitely a strong, oily, earthy hoppiness coming through. Makes me think of pine sap and forest floor. Just the barest hint of citrus occasionally peeks through. All is balanced by caramel malts. The10% ABV really shows up on the back end.

Mouthfeel is good. Nice and thick.

Overall, an interesting IPA. Not among the top tier of IIPAs, but very solid for a smaller brewery. The beer does seem slightly confused though, if it were just a touch maltier I would have guessed it was an American Barleywine. Still, fun to try.

 904 characters

Photo of Rifugium
3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Capone's, Norristown, PA

Very nice IPA. Poured into a tulip glass, a darker honey-amber color, clear--maybe a bit of chill haze--and a small layer of off-white head. Wide variety of hops in the aroma, with a resinous scent being dominant, and a detectable sweetness in the background. Definitely hop-centric on the palate, with oily pine notes, dried fruits, and plenty of bitterness. A solid sweet malt base still noticeable. Medium-bodied, filmy, and generally drinkable, if you're in the mood for a strong, non-subtle IPA.

 547 characters

Photo of jmdrpi
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

served on tap at the brewery, served in a 10 oz snifter-style glass.

appears a hazy dark golden color, with a thin bone-white head. decent lacing as a I drank the beer. smell is a variety of hop aromas, pine and floral notes dominate.

taste is also dominated by the hops. the underlying malt is sorta there, I personally would have liked more. Mouthfeel is decent, medium thickness with medium to high carbonation. easy to drink, no alcohol flavors show up.

Prism played this one straight, with no funky ingredients. A good result, but there are other DIPA's I prefer.

 574 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.59/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Capone's Black Friday event: This poured out as a nice looking golden copper color. The head was minimal here and didn't really have any lacing either. The smell of this beer has a really nice floral hoppy aroma to it with some citrus notes in the back end. The taste of the beer had some of the earthy floral flavors with some nice fruity melon flavors in there too. The mouthfeel of this beer was pretty good, it was soft and oily. Overall I liked this IPA, glad I got to try it.

 491 characters

Photo of oline73
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on-tap at the Capone's Black Friday event. Poured into a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with hardly any head at all.

Smell: Sweet malt with some fruity notes, mainly banana. There are some mild spice notes. Not a whole lot of hops.

Taste: Malty with some fruity notes. The banana shows up again with some caramel and spice. The finish is quite bitter and hoppy.

Mouthfeel: The body is just on the thick side of medium. The carbonation is tingly with a slick finish.

Overall: This is a really fruity double IPA. The malt is more prevalent than I expected. I might have another.

 613 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Felony IPA from Prism Brewing Company
3.52 out of 5 based on 140 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.