King Sue
Toppling Goliath Brewing Company

King SueKing Sue
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IPA - New England
Ranked #14
Ranked #51
4.61 | pDev: 6.94%
Toppling Goliath Brewing Company
Iowa, United States
King SueKing Sue
Notes: Long live the King. King Sue that is. Her ferocious bite will make sure all newcomers learn to toe the line. And what better way to exude her influence than with this Citra-hopped double IPA. Followers will cheer. Enemies will crumble. But don’t take her lightly, because when this double IPA is on a rampage, nothing will stand in her way…

100+ IBU

ABV varies with each batch
Reviews: 601 | Ratings: 3,347 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by JBowenGeorgia:
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JBowenGeorgia from Georgia

4.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

As soon as I popped the cap I knew this would be a tasty brew. I enjoyed the DDH Sue but this seemed to be much more promising. Aromas of citrus with some sweet juicy fruit compliments.
Poured a hazy golden orange with a finger of white head that really lingered, this Creature Comforts glass with the etching in the bottom keeps that head alive for awhile.
Taste follows, citrusy but somewhat tropical as well. Hop bite in the end that stuck around a bit begging me to take another sip.
Smooth somewhat creamy mouthfeel.
Overall my favorite TG beer to date!

Jul 31, 2017
More User Reviews:
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oldsailor from Connecticut

4.1/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As with all the IPA's I've had from Toppling Goliath, I found this one to be a little over-hyped. Overall, I do agree that it's a great example of a DIPA, but I would not seek it out again, especially with the fairly hard process it was to procure it in the first place. I'm glad I've tried it, but now I'm moving on!

Jan 24, 2016
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Heatwave33 from Florida

4.53/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look- The shiny glimmering light from the King's Crown.

Smell- The death of oranges, grapefruit and earthy hops from the King's slain enemies.

Taste- Sweet, Sweet victory and spoils!

Feel- Relaxing on the throne without a care in the world.

Overall- The battle was fierce but in the end the King always wins. If you mess with the King you shall be boiled and sit to rot 2-3 weeks.

Feb 16, 2015
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Hot on the heels of Pseudo Sue, this monstrous version is now unleashed on the Iowa beerscape. Chocked full of Citra hops and elevated to imperial status, and we've got a beast of a hop bomb on our hands that not even the brewers of Toppling Goliath can hold back.

King Sue quickly engulfs the senses with its radiant citrusy perfume with a mere pop of the cap. Straight grapefruit and tangy orange juice fills the nose and the glass as both the beer's fragrance and appearance takes on the exact character of fresh squeezed citrus juices. Its taste hinges on faint caramel and honey to heighten the impression of branch ripe fruit succulence.

But its seemingly fructose laden sweetness quickly retreats and the hops take firm control of the middle palate. Vibrant red grapefruit, ripe tangerine, mandarin, blood orange and a hint of both lemon and lime carry a citrus heavy taste across the tastebuds, saturating each of them with its sherbet-like tang. Nearly sour, the hops are so intense that they take on a tart citrus flavor before heading into a pleasantly bitter finish of fresh grassiness, herbaceous, and hemp-like flavor.

Medium bodied and trending dry, its the fruit-centric succulence and slight starchiness from malt that prevent absolute dryness. But with absolute resinous bitterness instead, their drying effects clean the finish and usher in a long and brilliant grapefruit aftertaste. This is a world class IPA that has the "juiciness" of New England IPA, but with the bitterness of those of the West Coast - Best of both worlds!

Mar 15, 2017
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Jwale73 from Rhode Island

4.09/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Canned 12/20/18 and served in a Spiegelau tulip. Pours a mile orange hue with a murky clarity and a frothy, two inch, bright white head embedded with pinpricks and craters. Great nose on this beer - bursts of citrus and tropical fruit immediately off the can pop. Less concentrated in the glass with more pith upfront. Taste reveals more citrus and pith with only the slight hint of tropical fruit at the finish. Backbone is soft malts. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body with a pleasant, even carbonation. Overall, style consistent and pleasantly drinkable.

Dec 31, 2018
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Stevedore from Oregon

4.74/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

On tap at Toppling Goliath's taproom. 12oz pour in an unlabeled chalice today, 3/8/2014.

App- Looks like a beer mimosa. Super hazy, unfiltered orange body, fairly minimal <1 finger white head that dissipates quickly. Some ring lacing the glass as the beer goes down. Honestly looks as close to orange juice with pulp as you can get.

Smell- So juicy. Lots of freshly squeezed orange, pineapple and passion fruit. This is citra at its best. Nicely balanced out by a bready malt backbone.

Flavour- Phenomenal. Juicier than regular sue for sure. So much citra going on. Orange, pineapple, tropical fruits balanced a bit (but way less balanced than regular sue! Which is saying something) by the sweet pale malts. Finish is a nice resinous grassy bitterness that isn't overwhelming. This is one of the best DIPAs to ever come out of the midwest, even if its not the most complex and interesting DIPA I've ever had- it's just so juicy and dank which makes it unique in its own right.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied, a bit thinner than it should be for a DIPA, but this is still just so juicy and creamy that I can overlook that aspect. Nice dry finish that is a bit bitter but certainly not overwhelmingly so. It is definitely a lot less bitter than other comparable double IPAs. Very easy to drink, dangerously enough.

Overall- This is Toppling Goliath's newest winner. It's like a single hop citra Heady Topper/Abrasive, and wipes the floor with these beers. Abner and Double Sunshine are both fantastic beers in their own right due to their relative complexity, but this is well up there with them. Try to get this if you can. Its a shame they weren't filling growlers of this stuff.

Mar 09, 2014
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gatornation from Minnesota

4.6/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a Very Fresh Bomber it poured a hazy golden yellow color with a great looking 1 finger head streaks of lacing thru -out. Smell was all tropical/citrus. Taste follows nose incredible burst of pineapple,peach,papaya,mango and citrus sweet and smooth on the mouth feel with ABV well hidden , This is one of the top 5 DIPA"S ever had

Jun 30, 2016
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SteveB24 from New York

4.56/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look-color is a slightly hazy gold, a gentle pour resulted in a finger of cream colored head that clings the glass nicely.
smell-Burst of citrus, with a nice malty backbone that doesn't overpower the gorgeous hops.
Taste-very citrusy, with a noticeable floral quality and honey like sweetness from the malt, almost reminded me of green tea with lemon and honey, but fruitier and frankly just more delicious.
Feel-Medium body, pleasantly bubbly on the tongue, slightly chewy right near the end but then it finishes on the slightly dry side, which contrasts wonderfully with the bright, fruity taste.
Overall-Amazing beer, my favorite Citra hopped beer so far.

Aug 13, 2015
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Nordbier from Georgia

4.71/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Cheers to CJ for hooking me up with this one. Super fresh bomber from the original brewer, none of that half-breed stuff from a few months ago. Poured into a snifter.

A - Nice looking beer. Pours a surprisingly clean, but fairly hazy orange with decent carbonation. No crazy pulpiness a la Julius going on here. Fluffy white head that laces well as the beer goes down.

S - Huge aroma. Big time tropical and citrus notes. Pretty much the ideal nose for the recent tropical IPA craze. Surprisingly at this gravity and IBU, there's nothing unpleasant or astringent about the nose in even the slightest way. Impressive.

T - Oh my damn. This one is up there with the best DIPAs I've ever had. Mango, pineapple, passionfruit, orange, and a whole host of other tropical fruits stomp all over your tongue. Pleasantly bitter, but not as much as you might expect for 100+ IBUs. World class through and through.

M - Medium bodied and crisp. Incredibly drinkable for this gravity. Nothing cloying or astringent about the feel here, which is impressive.

O - This may be the best DIPA I've ever had.

Sep 25, 2015
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warrendietrich2001 from Nevada

4.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured my tulip glass half way. A lovely orange / arpicot color with a touch of a white head that quickly faded. However there is a nice lacing left behind. Also on the cloudy side just how I like it.
Did not have to take a big whiff as this beer has an incredibly intense tropical smell. Got to say that after taking a smell my stomach starting to growl like the T-Rex on the bottle.
Finally time to hit the taste buds! This is not beer this heaven. I have had beer and many of the great ones but this is like nothing I have ever had. So tasty that I wanted to gulp it as though I had not drank it days. But I came to my senses and decided to savor it and make it last as this may be the last beer I ever drink because how can any beer be better.

Jan 13, 2016
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IvoryFoxhole from Virginia

4.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On tap at TG 8/16/17.

Mostly clear golden amber with white sticky lacing.

Tropical fruitbomb. Tons of juicy, sticky pineapple and mango. Light cracker malts.

Taste and nose same. Long long fruit through the palate, lightly mediated by malt. Only slightly bitter finish, well-controlled.

Medium body, lively but appropriate carbonation. Impeccable construction and balance.

It doesnt get any better than this. I would cry if people weren't around.

Aug 16, 2017
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BEEPOP from Connecticut

4.14/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Great beer. That being said would have a TH Green over this any day of the week.

I wish I could have had this fresh instead of 3-4 weeks old to really see the difference.

IMO Overhyped.

Mar 13, 2016
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.5/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

been waiting a long time to put my lips to this one, and finally got the chance in nebraska of all places (not a knock, the beer scene here is really booming!). this is one of the best toppling goliath beers i have had, and its surely worthy of the hype. it pours a yellow nectar color, hazy and pale but very bright and without visible bits of sediment. the head is tall and white and permanent, and almost acts as a net to catch all the citra hop goodness. this is not a varietal i have liked much in most single hop contexts, not versatile enough, but i think this is only citra, and its amazing. the soft lemon is there, a lot more oil than i am used to from it, and frankly quite a lot more bitterness too. i have never known citra to be quite this big and powerful, so i really dig that aspect of it too. notes pf pineapple and mango in here too, lots of tropical hop elements. pale and pils type malts, maybe a little wheat, some fluffy body for sure, but you would never know this is as strong as it is, it doesnt feel or taste that way on the grain side or in terms of booziness, which there is none of. just juicy tropical hops and appropriate bitterness in the end, floral honey, sweet lemon curd, and just the right amount of cleaning it up, highly refined but still a little rugged at the same time. this might be the best expression of citra hops i have ever known, really stunning stuff. fresh too, i am sure that makes all the difference. near the top of the hoppy beer list for me in 2016, thanks to my friend in omaha for so graciously sharing this one (and other) with me!!!

Sep 02, 2016
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winningwes91 from North Carolina

5/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Long live the king. Easily the best iipa I've ever had. Just a pineapple, peach, mango, melon bomb. Nice juicy fruit malt build that reminds me of treehouse. This is absolutely outrageous. Creamy mouthfeel.

Jan 16, 2016
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.14/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours very cloudy, with the honey colored liquid capped by a head of two fingers in height; copious lacing

Smell: Lemon/lime, orange and passion fruit

Taste: Citrus fruit forward, with the lemon/lime and orange tones building into a dank and bitter middle; some alcohol is discernible, after the swallow, with the bitterness persisting into the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Don't get me wrong here - I like the Toppling Goliath line-up a lot but I just don't think they are worth the ratings boost over many other beers I have tasted in this category; always happy to drink them, however

Thanks, TBach, for the opportunity

Nov 22, 2017
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ramay86 from Minnesota

3.98/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Spring 2015 batch (consumed 5/13/15, and then again on 5/15/15):

Appearance is terrific. Murky honey gold with a paper white that laces well from start to finish. No complaints here.

Nose seems to take a similar direction as past batches. A lot of citrus and juicy bits, but this one is counteracted by an abrasive bitterness and a hint of alcohol. It's obvious here that this is not the same beer that received such deserved acclaim in the past.

I won't deny that this is delicious. Very drinkable and fruit-forward. But it severely lacks the intense, juicy citrus qualities that made previous vintages so memorable. It's in that same wheelhouse, just not nearly as vibrant. There is also kind of an awkward finish... it cleans up too quick and the only thing left is hop abrasion.

Jun 03, 2015
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ovaltine from Indiana

4.77/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I don't have many "whalez," but this is one of them. I've been trying for a couple of years to secure this and finally did so today. Uber fresh (The King was bottled today), this is an exquisitely beautiful beer. It's somewhere between a brilliant straw color and burnt orange, not clear but also not "murky" like the Northeast iterations of the style. Lacing remains on the glass as you empty the glass, the body supporting 1-1/2 fingers of off-white head after an aggressive pour into a Hopslam tulip (my favorite beer glass).

The aroma is wave after wave of citrus - tons and tons of oranges and grapefruit, plus some passion fruit for what I get as sweetness.

The taste ..... the taste is all the citrus aromas, dancing on your tongue, from the beginning through the end of the taste. There's orange and grapefruit and passion fruit, folding together to make this very gulpable - which is dangerous, given the 8.5% ABV, and really dangerous because there is no alcohol burn.

The feel is tart and creamy at the same time, which adds to the drinkability, and speaks to the body that is present. I approached this with high expectations, and it exceeded those expectations - by a lot. Abrasive is probably my favorite DIPA, but this is securely in position 1A.

Aug 06, 2016
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largadeer from California

2.16/5  rDev -53.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Murky and oddly oxidized, though I was told the bottle was fresh. No bottle date unfortunately.

Feb 07, 2015
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rodmanfor3 from Vermont

4/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one was billed as "the best DIPA ever" and "even better than Double Sunshine," so after nearly a year of searching, I was thrilled to be able to try it.

Overall, King Sue was a "pretty good" beer, though not quite a "great" one in my book. It reminded me a lot of the hype surrounding King Julius and the disappointment that ensued following that release and subsequent tasting.

What I am finding, though, is that my base standard for exceptional IPA's from Vermont has ruined my palate for beers that others consider fantastic and amazing.

I am, however, glad to have tried King Sue to satisfy my curiosity and to be able to display a bottle with a T-Rex on it as part of my collection.

Jul 29, 2015
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SawDog505 from New Hampshire

4.57/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 13 oz Funk Brewing Teku glass canned on 2/28/19. Pours a very attractive hazy yellow orange like a glass of half oj and half pineapple, with a finger plus sticky off white head that leaves big thick rings of lace as it slowly settles. 4.75

Smell is papaya, tangerine, pineapple, and a little grapefruit really nice and tropical as hell. 4.5

Taste follows tropical front to back, papaya, pineapple, tangerine, passionfruit, and grapefruit all so well balanced and crazy juicy. 4.5

Mouthfeel is big, soft with gentle carbonation, sticky from all the fresh hops, and at 8% ABV so easy drinking. 4.75

Overall this is a treat, surrounded by a ton of hype and is in my opinion is worthy of its reputation. 4.5

Mar 24, 2019
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Mason_Whitham from Iowa

5/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I might be a little biased because I graduated from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa where Toppling Goliath is located, but this has been my favorite beer ever since I first tried it and I am yet to have one that I like more. King Sue is always a perfect choice, hands down.

Nov 22, 2018
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KevSal from California

4.82/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

The king, finally getting a chance, huge thanks to andrewpalmer for this bad boy. Poured into a sn perfect pint paired with the warriors playoffs.

Right away u can tell this is good. Appearance in the glass is one of the best I've seen!
Nose is an amped up sue, fantastic.
Taste follows the nose. Incredible brew, I dunno if 22 oz is enough.
Some people mentioned it being boozy, I don't get very much booze at all, I actually find this super refreshing.
Overall it lived up to my expectations. If it was easy to get I'd get it much more but pseudosue makes a fantastic substitute

Go warriors!

May 28, 2015
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FriedSlug from North Carolina

4.66/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

HAzy orange/gold beer with a nice fluffy head. There was a band of lacing and some specks left behind. Orange, pineapple, lemon zest. mango and dank aromas fly out of the glass. The taste is lightly sweet with a bit of orange and lemon zest followed by a huge pith and pine finish. This is a damn fine beer.

Jun 09, 2017
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maximum12 from Minnesota

3.55/5  rDev -23%

Many thanks to kenzilka007 for bringing me some of this storied nectar from the vaults of Decorah. 22 oz. bomber split with my wife.

Pour is liquid orange milk with plenty of carbonation, less than unfiltered, this was probably reverse filtered to add sediment. Nose is plenty of tropical fruit, very sweet, plenty of citrus. Makes my mouth water, but just a little. Less than a gusher, more than regular moistness.

I expect King Sue to reach out and caress me intimately, and to my disappointment, there is neither hand nor fingers creping out of the glass. This could have been brewed in the Bahamas, as the fresh fruit parade continues off of the nose. Mango, pineapple, a strong note of papaya, others peek out of the froth. Tons of sweetness swallows the mid-palate, along with a kind, gentle handshake of bitterness. A touch astringent. Mouthfeel is the high point here, thick & luscious, perhaps unique amongst the current crop of IPAs. Half a bomber? That’ll do, Alfred. That’ll do.

A good beer, but I’m digging hard to try to figure out what the craze is about. Give me a pint of the magnificent regular Sue any day.

Aug 28, 2014
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barnzy78 from Illinois

4.45/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

16oz, "CANNED ON 12/20/18 BEST BY 04/19/19". Tall and frothy white head rests atop a hazed pineapple juice colored body. Fresh Citra hop nose or citrus, mango, amd a hint of pineapple. Huge hop profile of orange, mango, and pineapple (as the label suggests), along with some pungent grapefruit zest and tart passion fruit notes; mild wheaty malt with maybe some oat in there, but this is a hop bomb so it's hard to tell. Full body, very resinous with hop oils sticking to the palate; bitter finish. This was great and it met my expectations! I look forward to drinking the rest of the 4 pack.

Jan 06, 2019
King Sue from Toppling Goliath Brewing Company
Beer rating: 100 out of 100 with 3347 ratings