Maelstrom IPA | Skull Coast Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
49 Ratings

Brewed by:
Skull Coast Brewing Company
South Carolina, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our Flagship ale is brewed with the finest imported malts from England, Maris Otter and Carastan, and seven different Northwest hops. This unique combination packs a powerful punch, and is aptly named for being a “Maelstrom of Hops” on the taste buds.

85 IBU

Added by AlexJ on 04-21-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
View: Beers
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Ratings: 49 |  Reviews: 35
Reviews by AlexJ:
Photo of AlexJ
3.76/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Ft Mill's first beer comes to the glass a nice amber with a thick and lasting head of white foam. The lacing is epic, literally coating the pint glass.

Aroma is nice and hoppy without overpowering the nice caramel and biscuit malt notes. It has notes of citrus, pine, and earthy green hops. Nose indicates more than the usual 2-Row Pale malt base, this has some substance. Hop aroma could be a little more pronounced.

Flavor is very nicely balanced between citrus notes of orange and grapefruit, sticky pine hops, and earthy greens. The malt profile is excellent with caramel, biscuit, and an almost Munich-like grain flavor. Very balanced.

Higher end of medium bodied with superb drinkability. Overall a well-crafted beer that clearly doesn't skimp on quality ingredients. If this is Skull Coast's first offering I think it's a good sign of things to come. Drink local.

 873 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Mantooth
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of PatLarsen
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: First BA review so please excuse me if I get this wrong. I got a pint of Maelstrom at Beef O'Brady's and was blown away. It appears a nice amber color with a big ol head on there.

S: It was a hop bomb type smell. I can see why they call this Maelstrom. It had lots of citrus, grapefruit with pine. Not sure what the hops actually are but I liked the combination.

T: The best thing about this beer is the taste. It's not like a run-of-the-mill IPA. It's got some zing to it. Tons of hops and a really wonderful balance. I like really hoppy beers, so this one hit the spot.

Mf: The gentleman next to me was also having a Maelstrom and he told me that it was Unfiltered, which may be the reason there was plenty of mouthfeel to this. Not thin at all.

Overall: I love this beer! It's completely different than the other IPAs that I've had. And, I'm a huge IPA fan, this was a great surprise to find that it was actually made locally. I'm going to be trying to find their other beers now!

 993 characters

Photo of whitekiboko
1/5  rDev -75.5%

Photo of CushyGig
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The appearance is a amber brown. There must be some serious grains in there. The aroma is good. I couldn't quite pin down the hop. Then again I hear there are 7 of them in there! It's very hoppy. The most striking thing about this IPA is the malt backbone. It's not just your typical IPA with 2-row and tons of hops. This has fantastic taste. And, at 7% ABV, you can't tell. I had several! Overall, this is a great first brew from a new brewery and I can't wait to see, or taste what's next from them.

 501 characters

Photo of Kegatron
3.38/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ the Six Pence Pub (Fort Mill, SC) on 5/29/10. Served in a pint glass. I have no idea why not only this beer is entered twice into the database but the brewery itself is also added twice as well. Anyway...

Pours a clear copper in the glass, with a think covering of slightly off-white colored head. This retains with some foamy bunching around the edges, leaving back a fizzy cascade of lacing which quickly slides down the sides of the glass. The aroma is floral, spicy, and piney smelling, with a good bit of sweet tropical fruit pushing through the sharper aspects of the hops. Toasted grainy biscuits and caramel pull up the back of the nose, mixing with the fruit to give this a deep sticky tang in the back of the nose. I'm getting a touch of diacetyl here as well that floats in and out of the other flavors. Not sure if it's an off-flavor or maybe a dirty line issue.

The hop profile in the taste is fairly spicy and resinous feeling, with a deep backing tang of fruity citrus flavor, bread, and sticky caramel malts. This is definitely leaning more towards the sweet and tangy side of things. The finish is a touch harsh, with spice, resins, and bitter rind all laying pretty heavily in the mouth after each sip. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a creamy sharpness to it that prickles the tongue and an oily slickness from the hops that carries a lot of that heavier sweetness with it. This has some beef to it (which I think adds some extra fierceness of those hops) but as far as the ABV goes, this drinks pretty decently for 7%.

I was initially pretty psyched to get to try this but in the end, it just really didn't float my boat. There is lots of unrestrained aggressive bitterness on one end of the spectrum of this and then an equal amount of overly sweet fruit and malt activity going on with the other. I was waiting for them to hopefully meet in the middle but it just never happened. This wasn't terrible by any means but I was just expecting a little more. I'd be willing to maybe try this on tap at another location some time down the road.

 2,079 characters

Photo of thagr81us
3.57/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into a standard pint. Poured a slight amber color with minimal white head present. Lacing was also minimal throughout. The aroma consisted of sweet malt with light hops. The flavor was malty, with hoppiness, and a hint of wood. However, it did leave a bad after-taste well after swallowing. It was medium on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this is a pretty nicely well-balanced brew with a balance of sweet and bitter.

 443 characters

Photo of GSmithBeer
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

had this at beertopia
A: the appearance was what you'd expect from an ipa. good.
S: the aroma was very pleasant. citrus and pine
T: this one had a slightly different taste than the other ipas i had at beertopia in a good way. liked it alot
M: the girl who was serving said it was unfiltered. so it had a nice full mouthfeel.
O: one of the better ipas at beertopia. pretty memorable.

 382 characters

Photo of Bung
3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At the Grapevine in Fort Mill. Medium amber/orange pour, adequate amount of white head.

Aroma is fairly pine resiny. Caramel malt there as well.

Taste, more caramel here than in the nose. Pretty malty body with some orange and tangerine. Piney hops come though with a standard bitter finish.

A pretty solid body on this, heavier side for an IPA. Still drinkable though as it is not real coating or so sticky. Alcohol has no presence.

Probably a good starter IPA, a good start for a new brewery as well.

 506 characters

Photo of cbwufpack
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of nc41
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Piedmont Ale House. A nice surprise is a wash of very average IPA's. This is one very solid easy drinking IPA, balanced, but also hoppy as hell with a nice bitter kick. Tremendous lacing, maybe one of the best I've ever seen, so it's nice to look at, but this is a serious IPA. More earthy, pine, than fruit, a must try if you can get it.

 352 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
3.85/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was thrilled o find this one on tap at Barleys last night. I had been wanting to try something from them since they started up so I quickly ordered a pint. Served cold and consumed on 05/28/2010.

Dark amber pour comes out at me right away with about a fingers worth of head poking through on the top. Settled quickly leaving it mostly bare but some nice lacing stuck to the sides.

Aroma is very balanced. Lots of sweet caramel and malty notes that mingled well with orange and touches of piney hops. As I take the first sip I notice how thick the body is on this one, drinks almost like syrup at times, but it is well carbonated and it keeps it from becoming too much. Nice flavor, really very sweet, lots of buttery and biscuit notes mixed in with deep orange and a really nicely balanced hop profile. Smooth, easy to drink and really went quite well with my dinner.

Overall while not being the best I have had, this is certainly very nice and I would not mind trying it again. Certainly good enough for me to want to try their other offerings.

 1,048 characters

Photo of blackie
3.83/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a: shaker pint serving, medium amber in color and sporting a 2-finger head with average retention

s: lots of dark pine hop aromas, fresh and resinous, with a solid malt support structure, suitably balanced for the style while maintaining a forward hop nose, grainy caramel and pale malts, like it

m: carbonation around moderate, body lighter to medium

t: really nice hop profile - green, fresh, and piney, set on a moderately malty backbone, some caramel notes and nice grain flavors, full bitterness in the finish

d: a very enjoyable ipa, easily drinkable

draft at Brixx, Raleigh

 586 characters

Photo of scottyshades
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler from Greenville Beer Exchange

A: Pours a hazy amber color with a massive fluffy/rocky off-white head. Retention is great too

S: Balanced between lots of caramalt and piney resinous hops. West coast example for sure. Subtly sweet

T: Again, west coast and balanced. Lots of caramel, sweetness, butterscotch?, and resinous/piney hops. Well hopped, but balanced. Light fruit notes poke through

Mf/O: Smooth (and plentiful) carbonation, heavy side of medium body, bitterness is kept in check with the sweetness. Overall, second beer from them, pretty impressive, especially out of S. Carolina

 599 characters

Photo of CBlack85
3.65/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have been looking for this beer ever since it was first released, happy to see it on tap at The Tilted Kilt. Served in a pint glass

A lot darker than I expected, this beer is a deep amber color. A moderated off white/tan head recedes slowly leaving behind a considerable amount of lacing.

The aroma is very well balanced. Lots of hops, mainly orange and grapefruit with some piney and grassy aromas. There is also a malty backbone to balance this brew out.

The taste, like the smell, is very well balanced. A generous helping of both citrusy hops and caramel malts make this a very balanced brew. The hops are mainly citrusy with some piney charicteristics peeking through. The malts are caramel with some biscuity/bready hints here and there. Fairly sweet, but not overly so. Well carbonated and medium bodied. Easy to drink, and the 7.5% ABV is completely masked. If the beer were a little less sweet, I could probably drink several of these in a sitting.

Overall very good for Skull Coasts initial offering, nothing that will knock your socks off, but good. This is a nice everyday IPA; unfortunately, with nothing to differentiate it from the thousands of other good IPA's, it tends to get lost in the crowd...

 1,221 characters

Photo of AllHatDavidson
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Orange amber body with a moderate cream white head, which had some staying power before giving way to a nice lace on the glass. Tons of hops mostly of the piney and citric variety. Hints of the sweet malt base that is nicely balanced. Its always nice with a powerful, complex hop aroma is matched in the flavor. This is a wonderful ipa. The malt base is the perfect canvas for the piney and grapefruit hops to tingle the tongue. Clean and crisp. Medium body. Skull Coast hit the mark with this one. Goes down great even with all those hops assaulting your mouth. Great showing at 7%.

 583 characters

Photo of cdizinno
4.68/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: Poured into a pint glass from a growler purchased at Green's off Piney Grove in Columbia, SC.

A: Slightly cloudy, dark amber with a 1 1/2+ finger, fluffy off-white head. Thick lacing is left behind all the way down the glass.

S: Nice mix of hops. Mostly citrus with undertones of pine and mildly sweet malts.

T&M: HOPS abound, up front. Fades to a beautifully balanced malt/hop fest. Citrus and mild pine, just like the smell. This is smooth and just great tasting IPA for the 7.5% ABV.

This IPA is highly drinkable for it's cost and quality. Not a completely original taste, but very high quality. Just about on par with a DIPA, but at a nice economical IPA. The manufacturer representative was at the filling and mentioned that this current batch measured in at 83 IBU's, instead of their original 75 IBU claim on the website.

 846 characters

Photo of EJ6759
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this too at Foster's Pub in Mt. Pleasant. Skull Coast had a tap takeover so I got to try them all. Let me start off by saying, DAMN! The appearance is a cloudy dark orange with a serious head and sticky lacing all the way down. This is seriously a graduation drink. You have to earn your way here. I feel like I have climbed the ladder with their others to this. The aroma from this beer is what it says: Northwest hops. They say seven on the sales sheet that was on the bar. I don't know which seven but there was lots of citrus and pine resin going on. There was also a slight bit of fruitiness. The mouthfeel is full and it had a perfect carbonation. Overall, this IPA is straight up WOW! I have one of their beers left to try, but this is F'in awesome! I'm getting another!

 781 characters

Photo of PDXHops
3.06/5  rDev -25%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap in a shaker pint.

Medium amber body with a smallish cream head. This appears to have more to do with the bartender's pouring technique than the beer itself; a nice network of lace rings is left all the way down the glass.

The nose is a little sweeter than I'd like. There's a nice citrusy hoppiness, but it's somewhat blunted by the malt. The flavors continue this theme. The piny bitterness is quite adequate and accompanied by some tangy citrus, but there's a touch too much caramel for my taste. The modest carbonation does little to lighten up the maltiness. The pine turns slightly metallic in the aftertaste.

Overall impression: This needs a little tweaking to satisfy a hophead, but there's definite potential here. And of course it's always nice to see a new brewery in action.

 795 characters

Photo of avalon07
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Got this beer on-tap at Oak Barrel Tavern. Had an orange color and a cloudy texture. There was a small amount of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. Epic lacing.

S: A nice, super-hoppy aroma. Also had some citrus in it as well.

T: As it was with the smell, the taste had a big hops presence in it, but there was also a piney quality that couldn't be overlooked. Had some citrus thrown in for good measure. A good, solid flavor.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This beer almost has more in common with a DIPA than a regular American IPA. Still, it's very flavorful, well made and easy to drink.

 631 characters

Photo of Robyn
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

Photo of BarrytheBear
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler courtesy of jpmclaug and shared with milwaukeeclassic and steepH2O in payment for a still distressful lost bet. How the hell can the Reds finish with a record better than the White Sox? Hells bells.

Deep amber with some red highlights. Consistent head across the surface.

Like I face planted into a pineapple upside down cake. Spot on.

Taste meet smell. Smell meet taste. Like E-harmony in a glass. A bit more on the malty side of balance, but overall quite nice.

Nicely carbonated after her half continental pilgrimage. Tastes quite fresh and an enjoyable start to the evening. Thanks, Jason.

 605 characters

Photo of JISurfer
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of dgfair
3.72/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler poured into Sam Adams perfect pint.

Pours a very hazy orangeish color, with a nice, chunky off-white head.

Smell is sugary sweetness with a decent amount grapefruit bitterness.

Taste brings a good earthy bitterness with a slight bit of pine and wood. There is a little bit of spicy sweetness to balance the flavor.

Drinkability is where this one shines. Very smooth going down, and the mouth is very smooth.

This is a very nice local option for an ipa, but not quite on par with the big boys yet.

 511 characters

Photo of GJ40
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at Brickhouse Tavern in Davidson, NC.

Copper and surprisingly hazy with a sturdy, creamy head. The aroma is citrusy, floral hops with a touch of toasted malt. The flavor is dominated by a biting citrusy bitterness. There's a fair amount of toasted malt to hold up the hops but the bitterness really runs the show. The consistency and carbonation are moderate.

This beer certainly has character and it's easy to drink but I think some would find the bitterness overwhelming.

 490 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Maelstrom IPA from Skull Coast Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.08 out of 5 with 49 ratings