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Terrapin All American Imperial Pilsner | Terrapin Beer Company

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149 Reviews
Terrapin All American Imperial PilsnerTerrapin All American Imperial Pilsner

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.90%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 07-09-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
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Reviews: 149 | Ratings: 208
Photo of metter98
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Barcade, Jersey City, NJ

A: The beer is hazy yellowish orange in color. It poured with a large patch of white bubbles on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: There are aromas of orange peels in the nose along with some hints of grassy hops and alcohol.
T: Like the smell, the taste has notes of orange peels from start to finish. It also has a light to moderate amount of bitterness, which particularly lingers through the finish.
M: It feels a bit more than medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. There is some dryness in the finish.
O: This beer hides its alcohol relatively well and the orangey flavors help to keep this from tasting too malty or boozy.

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Photo of avalon07
4.3/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pilsner glass. Had a bright yellow color and a clear consistency. There was an inch and a half of creamy, long-lasting head. Very good lacing.

S: A good aroma of hops, a little citrus, and some malt.

T: The hops presence in this beer is extremely heavy, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Also has good amount of citrus, as well. Malty in the finish. There was a slight grassy tinge, but it seemed to fade the more I drank. A very powerful, very robust flavor.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a sharp, somewhat bitter finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This beer is big, bold, and tasty. A drinkable brew.

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Photo of shand
4.17/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint. 8.9% alcohol 2012 bottling.

Terrapin's All American Imperial Pilsner pours a hazy straw color with a small head. Pilsner malts, noble hops, and a toasty breadiness on the nose. The taste is very nice, it's got an intensely robust amount of noble hops in here that leave the tongue bone-dry and hold up well against the sweet malt base. The mouthfeel is full-bodied and highly carbonated and the drinkability is great. Overall, this is another good imperial pilsner. It seems that craft breweries have finally figured out the imperial pils, since I've had quite a few good examples in the past few months.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pale but healthy yellow gold body. Snow white head which drops quickly.

Inviting fresh bread aroma.

Sweet, but not too sweet, beginning. With some depth. Ok hop bite, but needs much more. Late warmth. Tasty but lacks complexity.

Smooth medium mouthfeel with a late tingle.

Definitely an Imperial Pilsner, not a masquerading bock. Not great, but good and enjoyable.

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Photo of MacQ32
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a nice golden straw color with a solid finger of near white head, great retention, excellent sticky lacing.

S - Sweet bready caramel malts, candied fruit aroma and a little funk, and maybe a trace of grassy/citrusy hops.

T - Mmmm much drier and more bitter than expected! Dry bitterness and yeasty funk/sugary orange come on quite strong (not crazy about that part). Malty sweetness is seemingly overpowered. Really nice grassy/pilsner aftertaste that hardly makes an appearance through all the other punches being thrown from this one.

M - Totally different that imagined, pretty full bodied for sure, thick, almost a sipper. Appropriate carbonation given its thickness.

O - Pretty solid, not everything I hoped it was but a nice surprise. Bold, dry, really not very pilsnerish at all for me, more like a golden hopped up dry ale with some funk

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Photo of Kromes
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2012 version, 8.9% ABV...

A clear gold color with a finger's width white head.

Aroma is a little strange, but pleasant. It smells like biscuit malt and alcohol with some sweet orange peel and lemon. Almost like a toned down sprite.

First taste is alcohol, citric acid, and a slight biscuit malt. From there is gets a bit more acidic and bitter. The finish has a big bitter alcohol bite and grassy hop flavor with some sweetness from the malt. The beer is full bodied with a bit of a syrupy feel and somewhat low carbonation.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
3.92/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is the re-released 2012 version, which clocks in at a hopped up 8.9%

A - Looks like a pilsner. Clear, straw color. No head or sticky lace on the glass.

S - Light malt aroma and strong alcohol presence

T - Light up front, but huge alcohol kick in the face towards the end.

M - Light bodied.

O - So an extreme hopped up pilsner. An extreme strong pilsner! Its very good, but I think its a little too strong. I remember the old version seemed just right at 7.5%

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Photo of billab914
3.55/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Calton for sending me this one, it's one of the last things Terrapin has bottled that I haven't tried yet. Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Terrapin glass. It poured a murky, brown/orange color with a thin off-white head barely covering the top of the beer.

The aroma shows mostly a sweet maltiness to it with some caramel and a candied orange like flavor as well. I get just a bit of some citrusy and piny hops coming through as well. I'm making an assumption that it was hoppier when fresh. It's still pretty good though, I get some barleywine similarities out if it at this point.

The taste also shows a big malty profile to it throughout the flavor. I get a good amount of caramel along with some of the candied fruit like flavors that were present in the aroma. They give it a bit of a orange or pineapple like presence in the flavor. The hops are pretty modest but give it some pine and citrus, as well as some needed bitterness, especially in the finish.

The mouthfeel is pretty heavy for the style but still below something like an average barleywine. Carbonation is on the lower side. Drinkability isn't bad, it had some nice malty, fruity, sweet flavors to it. It drank more like an American barleywine to me, which I didn't expect but actually liked. It would be tough to hold this to some of the pilsner style guidelines since it didn't seem to resemble that style at all. It doesn't seem like that was the intent so I'm not even going to try. Pretty decent beer overall.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Again, I am blown away by Terrapin label art. This is a beautiful label. This is also one of the few imperial pilsners I have had the pleasure to review.

Served from a bottle into a conic pint glass at a local beer bar. Beer is reddish in color and hazy. Mild carbonation and barely any head. Does not look like a pilsner or an exaggeration of a pilsner at all unfortunately.

Smell is a mixture of sweet malt and hops. Also not what I expected.

Holy hops! This beer must have some serious IBUs. The whole thing is dominated by hops. There is some malt in the front of the mouth and then some midpalate hop flavors then a ton of bitterness. Is this an imperial pilsner or an ESB?

I did not hate this beer I just don't see how it fits into this style. It didnt remind me at all of any lager I had ever had, but maybe that's a good thing. It was seriously a malty IPA or an ESB.

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Photo of kevinjosephlee
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a glass

This is the second time around for me to review this beer. I just wanted to try it again and see if my tastes change and/or how much much opinions change over time. (because beeradvocate does not allow us to review a beer more than once, I will just average my scores for the two tastes.)

A: A coppery red and fairly hazy but not really yeast turbidity (no Tyndall effect). A nice and creamy eggshell head with moderate retention and good lacing.

S: This is a very malty smelling beer with hints of hops. Alcohol not perceived. This beer just smells like a brewery.

T: Sweet malts and bitter hops at first. Both of these flavors continue through the consumption. Alcohol does add some spiciness as the beer warms. M: Almost chewy that this is so rich and full, with moderate carbonation that adds a tingly bite.

D: This is a special occasion beer. It has to be consumed slowly because of its rich sweetness, high alcohol and bitterness.

Overall: I like it. A little too sweet to be enjoyable for me.


(this was my first review)
Bottle poured into a glass

A: A golden orange; hazy. With a creamy, rich head with good (albeit small) retention and great lacing.

S: Corn-like sweet maltiness. Perhaps some light hops and alcohol in the nose as it warms, but the dominant scent is caramel malt. Perhaps I am just not getting what everyone else seems to sense in the head, but I am not perceiving any hop aroma akin to citrus. The hops aroma I perceive is more medicinal perhaps even piney, and subtle when compared to the sweetness and maltiness.

T: Big sweetness and alcohol in the first sip. Lingering bitterness in the back of the mouth. Fulfills the promises of the beautiful nose. Good balance between the hop bitterness and the higher sweetness of the corn. No harsh aftertaste, just a lingering and pleasant bitter smartly balanced with a smooth sweetness.

M: A large and satiny mouthfeel, that is accentuated by the high carbonation. It is still fizzing as it goes down.

D: An enjoyable drink; however the sweetness makes for much slower consumption (which is probably good at 8.1% ABV).

Overall: When I first had this beer on a tour of the brewery, I committed myself to try it again for reviewing purposes (I was not of the appropriate state of mind to review it then). I was right. This is a favorite beer of all time.

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Photo of Anthony1
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden with a small bubbly head that lingers for a while leaving decent lacing. The smell is mostly a sweet malt aroma with caramel and a decent citrus hop aroma as well. The taste also starts with the sweet malts with some spiciness in the middle before a citrus hop bitterness in the finish. little low on carb

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Photo of CampusCrew
3.06/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

review is with one year age.

appearance: Golden pale with quickly disapating head retention,

smell: resmbles of some hops but not strong

taste: hops way gone and this did not even taste liek a pilsner at all

mouthfeel: light bodied. had an ale feel too it but maybe because it was aged

drinkability: did not even resemble a pilsner at all. avergage beer mayeb it's better normally.

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Photo of CBlack85
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a bottle into a pint glass

A-Pours a golden color with an orange hue. About one fingers worth of creamy white head with a fair amount of lacing.

S-Nice balanced malty smell with a fair amount of hops evident as well. I can also smell the presence of the alcohol.

T-Much less hoppiness than I expected, I don't know if that is due to the fact that it is a vintage 2007 and the hops have faded a bit or if that is the natural flavor of the beer. I will have to try a fresh one to compare. Nice sweet flavor with the malts at the forefront.

M-Very pleasant, almost leaves a sticky feeling on the tounge. A slight burn from the alcohol, but overall a very nice balance.

D-Very nice overall, but I am a bit disappointed. I expected a bigger beer from Terrapin.

I enjoyed the beer but will probably not put it into my regualar rotation.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.31/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a nonic pint glass. Appears a mildly hazy deep apricot color with about two fingers of pale yellow foam. Aroma and flavor are of sweet malts, mild lemony citrusy notes, bread, a bit buttery. Just about medium bodied with ample carbonation. Worth a try if you find it around.

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Photo of czfreeman
3.3/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I just moved back to the South from NY a few days ago for a few month's stay, and I must say one of the things I have looked foward to is more Terrapin beer. I could start each day with a Coffee Oatmeal Imperial. I found this bottle at a local beer store, dated Vintage 2007.
Once decanted, a bright orange-malt colored Pilsner emerges, almost a fall-leaf like tone. The cap to this brew sports a nice tan color, and leaves a good amount of lacing.
Upon first impressium, malty caramelized squash, pumpkin, brown sugar, definatley some alcoholic phenols. Im picking up musty barnyard-like aromas,yeasty funkiness. This actually smells really good, almost like a malty Rare Vos with a touch of true Belgian funk, but I wanted a over-hopped uber-Pils. The hops are muffled as I had expected them to be, but are still in there somewhere, maybe? On second thought, this is the least hoppy Terrapin brew Ive had, which I didn't know such a thing was possible.
Flavor is fairly rich and malty. Hops are taking a backseat by far, but are appreciated ever-so-slightly. Malts dominate, caramel, sugary, syrupy on the palate, alcohol barley adding enough balance to keep All American Pils from being too sweet. Not very complex, overly malted flavor for my taste.
In order to do this brew justice, I will try to pick up a fresh bottle this summer to appreciate it in a younger form.
My only advice is, drink this one as soon as you can get a fresh one, lest all "hop" is lost!

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 2007 vintage keg on-tap at Bocktown.

A-Body is a slightly translucent golden hue. Served with an approximately 1 finger creamy white head which has pretty nice retention before fading to a very thick collar and traces of lacing are left all the way down the glass.

S-Lots of pale malt comes through initially with a slight edge of German hops at the end a just a touch of phenols. Smell is somewhat subtle and rings through like a typical German Pilsner.

T- Flavor is much like the taste-only less subtle. The initial taste is loaded with pale malt sweetness and just a touch of alcohol. The hops really come through for the finish but are a touch more bitter but less biting then I am sure this was when it was fresh. Finish is pretty clean leaving nothing to linger.

M- Wow. This is great. Nice medium weight, very smooth, oily body and medium carbonation. Wouldn't have expected this much from a Pilsner.

D- This is good, crisp, and refreshing- but not my favorite of the style. The ABV is somewhat noticeable but still subdued. Looking forward to trying a fresh batch in the summer.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A. Pours a bit dark for the style, on tap. Burnt orange with some soapy yellowish head and lace.

S. Smells like a hop sack of euro/american hops.

T. A hoppy beer with a subtle 2 row malt backing. A bit of grainy wheat. The hops are lightly acidic and a bit citric. On the hoppy side as the name and description would suggest.

M. Medium bodied and fairly light on the palate with a lingering, herbal bitterness.

D. This is not the easy drinking pilsner you are searching for. This is an Americanized hopped up version of the style.

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Photo of marcpal
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle from a six pack brought back with me from Charlotte. Poured into a Sam Adams uber glass. 2007 Beer Tour edition.
Bottle Graphics: 7/10.

A: Hazy yellow creamy color with a thinnest of filmy white heads. If I were to guess, I would have thought that it would show the appearance of a citrusy IPA. Extremely thick and luscious lacing.

S: Plenty of malts and some molasses. Sweet burn of alcohol in the nose, I think its fair to say spicy sweet. Fruity flavors dominate from the sugar, not much in terms of hops. This has to be stronger than 8%.

T: Sweet sugar dominates. Here come the hops somewhere down the line. Interesting hops that I guess are the type that make is a true member of the pils family rather than an ale. Whatever it is, it is well done. I started it out too cold and the character was nicer as it warmed off.

Intensely sweet flavors of almost a barleywine in the throat early transitioning to more of an IPA later- but I have to take away that the hops were much lower than I had thought I would get here. Maybe it would have been a different story fresh and raw. One odd point is an aftertaste of grape jelly- not sure where the hell that is coming from?

M: Very creamy and not too much carbonation. I have a hard time thinking of it as a pilsener but I guess the ingredients make it just that. The specs would be interesting to find out more about: I have to call it a pils-wine. There is noticeable alcohol here.

D: It is much different than my standnby of the style, the Sam Adams, but I like it quite a bit.
This was one damn interesting imperial pilsner. It was much thicker and by all means, worth a try.
The booze is far from hidden and I would have guessed it would come in double digits. Very extreme and flavorful. I prefer their wheatwine but this pilswine is fun to sip on.

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Photo of cracgor
3.54/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The beer pours out a golden straw color but without any head. The smell is basically normal for a pilsner with the characteristic pilsner hops. Drinks a little better, with more ester like complexity. Overall, fairly good to drink for an evening playing pool, but nothing really exceptional.

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.16/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle from Kingdom Liquors, Brandon, FL. Poured into a cervoise.

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy orange amber with one-finger of good, almost white lace. The retention is only average, though it does leave some nice fingers and half moons of lacing hanging around. Carbonation is incredibly fine-bubbled and dense, though it rises rather slowly towards the surface - a sign of this beer's body, to be sure.

Aroma: Very biscuity, almost buttery in places. There's also a definite vegetal note about the hop presence, and not in a good way - like stewed onions, perhaps, buttered and salted.

Taste: Quite a disappointment. The distractingly buttery malt profile is still quite prominent, and it's accompanied by: 1) probably too much bitterness; and 2) a spicy, grassy hop presence that unfortunately comes off as a little soapy and chemical-esque.

Mouthfeel: The body is indeed fairly thick, though the prickly effervescence does indeed do quite a bit to lighten things up, lending a nice creamy, milky feel to everything.

Drinkability: A good looking and feeling beer, without much in between. The first disappointment I've had from Terrapin. It's not a terrible beer, but it is easily the worst of the Monster Tour series. The alcohol's reasonable for the style and well-hidden, but there's enough else that's funny about this one that I probably wouldn't come back for another.

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Photo of superdedooperboy
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 release, poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a pilsner glass.

Pours a nice golden hue with a solid one-and-a-half finger off-white head that fades to a small cap and lingers for the duration of the drink, leaving behind beautiful web-like lacing.

Aroma is bright, delicious, and inviting, with a very fruity, citrussy nature with overwhelming notes of pineapple. Beautiful.

Medium-bodied and smooth across the palate. Sweet malted grain flavors appear briefly up front and are quickly overtaken by delicious citrus fruit flavors and mild bitterness in the middle with a long, gently sweet finish.

Drinkability suffers slightly due to the higher alcohol content, but otherwise the beer is so delicious that it leaves a massive craving for another. Extremely balanced and perfectly aged, this one ranks up there as one of the most delicious, well-balanced beers I've ever had the pleasure of drinking.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
2.79/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had this on tap at Taco Macs in Atlanta. The beer was pale orange yellow and hazy, thick creamy head. The smell is OK but not nearly as hopped as I'd expected for a "double pilsner". There was some citrus-like hops but not defining or anything. Same with the taste, not as hoppy as I wanted and actually a little cloyingly sweet. The thick body didn't help, this wtoo sweet and thick to be compared with any of the best pilsners or double pilsners. Unbelievably this came from Terrapin, whose beers I normally search for an love. Thumbs down for now.

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Photo of glid02
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this on-tap at the Terrapin Brewery.

Pours a copper color with an orange hue to it. One-finger of tan head that dissipates into a wispy layer of bubbles and a thick ring around the glass. Lacing is pretty sticky. Just from looking at it I thought I'd been served the Rye Squared, but after closer inspection it's just a bit lighter and the head is not as foamy.

Smells good. There's a lot of sweet malt aroma to go along with some light citrus and floral hop notes.

Tastes similar to the smell. Mild malty sweetness that gives way to a slight citrus flavor and finishing with a solid amount of bitterness.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got good thickness and carbonation and it goes down smoothly.

Drinkability is good. This beer goes down very easily, but there's nothing that really makes me terribly excited about drinking another one.

Overall, I believe this is the first Imperial Pilsner I've had so I don't have anything else to compare it to. It's a solid beer and I would be glad to drink one if given to me, but I don't think I'll be planning on buying it again anytime soon.

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Photo of 7ways
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

9/22/2008 12oz bottle in a pint glass. 2007 edition.

A: Darkest Amber with a slight haze. White head depleted to a ring, no lace.

S: Cereal, salt water taffy, pale malt, muted hops and corn sweetness. It reminded me of what I smelled when I toured Makers Mark. Nice.

T: Sweet bread, more pale malt, lively fruity hops, and sweet spices. Much sweeter than anticipated, but not cloying.

M: Silky. Great carbonation.

D: Scary how quickly I can drink this beer.

I'm guessing 'imperial pilsner' is an American thing. This is the only one I've had besides Small Craft Warning, and while both are quite good, they're a far cry from the crisp feel and light aromatic noble hops you would associate with a bohemian lager.

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Photo of treyrab
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this in the mail today from Imstillthegman...Thank again! Poured this one from the fridge into my pint glass...

A: Hazy orange copper with an extremely creamy tan head. The head here can be scooped with a spoon it is that thick...very nice looking. This one laces extremely well as well.

S: Wow, tons of pale malts here and tons of citrus as well. I am also getting some vanilla and toffee in the nose which is both surprising and intriguing. Also some brown sugar and caramelized sugar going on. There is also some alcohol coming through from the huge ABV.

T: Wow is this very, very creamy. For an Imperial Pilsner, I was expecting this to be a bit rough, and with a lot of carbonation...but this is the exact opposite. It has the consistency of an imperial stout. The flavors are of tons of pale malts, tons of caramel, caramelized brown sugar, and a hint of toffee which really sets this beer apart. The hops are also very prevalent and citrusy.

This was one damn interesting imperial pilsner. With the consitency of a a big stout, and the taste of a huge pilsner/vienna lager, this is definitely one worth grabbing.

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Terrapin All American Imperial Pilsner from Terrapin Beer Company
3.68 out of 5 based on 208 ratings.
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