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Terrapin All American Imperial Pilsner | Terrapin Beer Company

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Terrapin All American Imperial PilsnerTerrapin All American Imperial Pilsner
208 Ratings
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.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 208 |  Reviews: 149
Photo of Dubbercody
3.35/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours with a flufy frothy head that disapates into a soft top layer. Beautiful straw golden color...nice smell of malt and bread. Taste pops out with a malty topside that smooths down and drops down to give a nice softly bitter aftertaste, a bit like grass (in the good way.)

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Photo of jwc215
3.08/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into pilsner glass.

Pours golden yellow with a decent clarity and a thin white head that soon all but disappears. Very little lacing is left.

The first smell is of a sweet, apple-like fruitiness with citrusy hops in the background. Ok - not bad, not what I expected. It's also a bit thin.

The taste is of some vague hops and alcohol upfront. It's soon supported by a thick, sweet malt. After another sip or too, the sweet malt quickly takes over to run the show, with an alcoholic presence as the sidekick. Any hop presence only takes some of the edge off of the sweetness, but it still borders on cloying. Alcohol continues to interfere, even with the understanding that it has a high abv. I think I caught a glimpse of some earthy graininess, but it soon vanishes, if it were present at all. It lacks certain characteristics of a typical pilsner - very little grassy/hay, for example. The hops become all but lost in the mix of malt and alcohol. Very little in way of bitterness. Could use more balance. At times, something in it reminded me of a strong pale ale more than a double pilsner. Interested flavors, if unbalanced. But, it almost misses completely.

There is a creaminess in the feel, though it is on the lighter side of medium-bodied. Some oily slickness helps it go down, otherwise it would leave a heaviness despite its body. The alcoholic bite is not too bad only because it is a cool day in autumn, but - this is a summer release, and I don't know that the alcoholic notes really do anything than add a warming kick to it.

There is a rawness to this one. While the flavors are not bad, they don't always mix so well, and I am left wondering about it fitting the style. Bitterness is nearly not existant. Interesting, but nearly misses the mark on too many counts.

Thanks to SilentSabre for including a couple of these.

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Photo of akorsak
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The pils is a hazy golden color with a thick head on pour that dissipates quickly.

S: The aroma is one of citrusy hops with a sharp piercing alcohol aroma that does not hide itself at all.

T: Taste is a fruity hop taste. I am not sure what hops that Terrapin uses, but the beer has a biting, slightly sweet flavor the reminds me of their Rye2. The malts are firm and support the hops. In my opinion, the hops are too citrusy and not earthy enough, losing some of the impact of a pils.

M: The hops are pleasant, overdone as only an American brewery could do.

D: Very drinkable, this beer is closer in taste to a pale ale despite its lager origins.

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Photo of daliandragon
3.29/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Impressive crown of dense foamy head with respectable retention and a dark golden hue upon the pour. Lacing is also notable as the head recedes. Nose is faint hops and alcohol, not too strong of anything really. I've been mostly happy with Terrapin thusfar, let's see if they can step it up a notch here.

Very bitter and hoppy, continuing into the aftertaste. No nonsense pilsner taste is there but also the heaviness of the alcohol. A bit too dry and a little suffocating with the hops and not as refreshing as a typical pilsner. Brisk and carbonated mouthfeel, especially early in the sip.

Not really my cup of tea, but still interesting and well done. I'll happily finish the remainder of my four pack but probably won't be springing for another any time soon.

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Photo of ybnorml
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A clean yellow/amber beer. Has a small foamy white head and some lace. There is a fruity hop character at first in the aroma. Followed by some piney notes and a light sweet malt. The taste starts with a sweet malty note and a tinge of hop bitterness. Followed by a quick burn of alcohol and some piney hops at the back of the throat.

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Photo of AlexJ
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Glad to finally see Terrapin on Charlotte shelves. Textbook Pilsner pour, light golden amber with a tight, lasting paper white head.

Aroma is not as big as some other Imp Pils, but well suited to the style regardless. Classic pilsner malt notes, crackery bread drizzled w/ honey, light lemony citrus, and herbal and earthy hops.

Flavor is very good, but just not "Imperial or Double" to me. Crisp malt notes of sweetened bread and peppered crackers are balanced by notions of lemon peel, honey, skunky marijuana, and biting hops flavors of green herbs, earth, and light florals.

Body is not quite medium, with a crisp, smooth mouthfeel with great drinkability and a slick texture. Good, but not even on the same level as Morimoto or Sam Adams Harvest Double Pils.

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Photo of mcallister
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep colored pils. Thick and frothy head leaves significant lace. That seems to stick around. Somewhat opaque.

Malt sticks out in the nose. As well as slight diacetyl. Hints of pear, and apple and slight floral hop.

Medium bodied with a buttery finish nice and lively carbonation really make you want another drink. Same hints of pear with a green apple although very little. Very malt driven with the flowery hops showing face on the medium finish.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.62/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad beer at all, but the weakest of the big beers that Terrapin makes (contracts). I'm a big Terrapin fan, especially since its local, but I think they could do betterthan this. They make four seasonals, and all are big beers. But for my money, I'd rather see a nice big grapefruity double IPA for the summer. Their Big Hoppy Monster is great, and perfect for fall, but thats not what I'm talking about- Somthing less malty and more hoppy and clean woould be great.

This beer pours a hazy golden with a short head that goes away quickly. decent lacing.

Smell is crisp and a little sweet with an underlying smellof rye.

Taste is a little bizarre. Half the time I think of malt liquor, Half the time I think of a much nicer spicy weird German. It starts very rich and malty, but crisp and toward the lighter side rathervthan a malt bomb. It finishes spicy and sweeter.

Mouthfeel is good. Nice carbonation level, a little heavy on the palate, but good body..

Drinkability is decent, but a little cloying..

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Photo of oberon
2.73/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had anticipated having this beer for a couple years prior to finally having it and man what a let down,poured a clear medium golden with a thinner white head that didnt stick around long.Big overly sweet aromas some adjuct-type vegetal notes a slight herbalness but its faint if had no idea what I was drinking I would say this is a Euro strong lager really.Flavors I'll harp back to the Euro strong lager its overly sweet and the alcohol reallyshows itself at times it almost burnt going down,a light drying herbal note kept it from going down the drain.I have had other double pilsners and they had some character of a big pils this has none its a Euro strong lager in style and a not very good one at that,I do enjoy most of Terrapins beers though.

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

12oz bottle from aracauna via trade. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" creamy off-white head above the clear dark golden brew. Head fades slowly, with plenty of sticky lace. Aroma is reasonably well-balanced, slightly leaning towards the citrus hops. Taste is sweet pale malts, with hops coming in with touches of Saaz dryness, but more dominated other more fuity varieties. Mouthfeel is smooth, and drinkability is reasonably good as well. Not enough pils quality in this one to warrant the style, in my mind. Almost seems like a somewhat light-bodied 1.5IPA or something. All told though, not one I would dump out of my fridge.

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Photo of NClifestyle
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

just got a 4-pack from brawley's in charlotte. brilliant beer store.

great color in the glass, dark golden with a hint of orange. clear with lines of bubbles streaming from the bottom. thick head drops down to a creamy white layer on top of the beer. lots of wavy lace after each sip.
smell is sweet, somewhat like a strong apple juice, and i mean juicy. not exactly pilsner, but not completely in a different category, either.
that juicy sweet malt and hop mixture is swirling all over the mouth. not overpowering bitterness, but a nice finishing hop tang. there is a does of pepper spicyness as well, but not like i've tasted in the czech and german pilsners.
medium in the mouth, some carbonation, but slick. a solid mouthfeel.
some alcohol does sneak in near the end of the beer, as it warmed up. not sure i could do a bunch of these in a row, but i would have it again. this is the first double or imperial pilsner (is there a difference) i've had, so not a lot to compare to. i dig it, along with most of terrapin's beers (just keep the cream ale).


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Photo of barleyman
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 12 oz. brown glass bottle into my straight sided tumbler.The off white head quickly recedes into a nice lace. The dark amber is too dark for a pilsner, but perhaps correct for a double pilsner. This is the first of this style I have tried. Very little aroma, consisting of straw, and malt. The taste is much larger, with a good bit of alcohol sweetness and a complex mixture of grass and straw. There is an excellent balance of malt and hops, with neither being too strong. Mouthfeel is also very good, with a light body and finish. Drinkability is excellent, despite the abv. I could drink a few of these on a hot summer day. Bravo Terrapin.

Just a thought,


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Photo of mntlover
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear yellow with bubbles slowly rising to ringed white film some good sticky lace left behind. Know real head but poured that way from tap.

Aroma is good light bready malt good spicey hops along with citrusy fruits.

Taste is malt bready almost with lots of hops light citrus with some herbal spice and floral blended for a nice crisp hop flavors and finish. Malt is noticed underneath and balance it out but hops do prevel.

Mouthfeel is a light medium with a good bit of carbonation levels but it is smooth and crisp at the finish.

Drinkability is good a nice summer brew a good solid pilsner loaded with hops. Would make a great session brew but the 8 is not tasted or noted and would lead to problems.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a bottle contract brewed at Frederick in MD... What I enjoyed most about Terrapin's All American was that it wasn't overdone like so many Imperial pilsners can be. Sure it initially seemed light for the style, but there was a full and fairly rich maltiness to it; and it did have a decent amount of hops. It was balanced and drinkable, with a little bit of extra character. The malt flavor was clean, the hops came through clearly, and the alcohol was fairly well cloaked. In fact, the only downside I see is that there's really not much there to warn you of its strength; and for a beer of 8% I think I would like a little more flavor. Still, I could enjoy more than one of these. Good show!

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Photo of silver0rlead
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an intense golden yellow with a thick white head. The aroma has some citrus and floral hops upfront along with some corn syrup sweetness, biscuity malt, and a hint of alcohol. The flavor has an intense floral and citric hop character initially, along with some biscuity malt, corn syrup sweetness, and lively carbonation. The mouthfeel is light and drinkability is pretty good. A solid double pilsner, not quite as complex as youd expect but tasty nonetheless.

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Photo of spiveym
3.15/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Decanted into a 20 oz. Pilsner glass. Rich golden color, one-finger sudsy head with good retention. Lacing consistant.

S: Some hint of roasted malt. Not a very strong scent. There is something here though, that my inexperienced nose can't place. Is it alcohol?

Taste & Mouthfeel: Solid but mild bitterness, not overly carbonated. Lingering aftertaste, but not objectionable.

At 7.5% ABV, this has a lot of bang for your buck. Sold in a four-pack. Tasty beer. Not really outstanding, but definately worth a try.

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Photo of brentk56
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden color with a modest head that leaves some lacing

Smell: Pineapple and graham cracker with a vague hint of noble hops

Taste: Starts with a very sweet pineapple juice character that after the swallow becomes a bit richer and is joined by some bitter flavors and warming alcohol

Mouthfeel: Slightly thick and well carbonated

Drinkability: Like the DFH Golden Shower, I think this beer misses the point. I would much prefer an Imperial Pilsner to be Germanic with a less fruity but more noble hop bitterness.

Postscrip - Two years later, I purchased a bottle of the 2006 from Bruisin Ales in Asheville and I like it much better. The alcohol has toned down and the fruity flavors have melded nicely with the bitter. Who would have guessed an Imperial Pilsner would age so nicely?

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

from the 2006 monster beer tour
a - poured a two fingers thick head into a weizen glass. very clear and amber color with a pillowy head. lots of bubbles throughout glass and significant lacing throughout.
s - nice floral scent with a metallic hint.
t - not as hoppy as the rest of terrapin's seasonals so that surprised me. tastes sweet.
m - smooth and creamy texture that really covers the tongue.
d - drinks very clean and the alcohol is not very evident throughout.

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

From a 12 oz. bottle. Part of the 2006 Monster Beer Tour.

A - light golden, like fresh hay and straw. Perfectly clear. Head is very small, bright white, little lacing and not much head retention.

S - metallic aroma of hops and pilsner malt, dry grain, alcohol. Bottle states these are American hops, but it seems like they are maybe American-grown European noble hops. Spicy and metallic. Sweet biscuit in there, too.

T - tangy, sweet pilsner malt followed by sharp, spicy bitter kick. Tart, spicy hop flavor as well. Some biscuity, dry, graininess. Some alcohol warming as well.

M - medium bodied, carbonation is above average. Tangy, thick finish despite drying grainy flavors.

D - an interesting beer, not really hoppy or dry enough to be a solid imperial pils in my view. A little to big and carbonated to be highly drinkable - I got filled up after only a couple.

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Photo of SilentSabre
3.07/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I must say, I'm a bit disappointed in this one. I was hoping for so much more, and it simply wasn't there. It poured a golden orange colour, slightly cloudy. Single finger snow white head that lasted about 90 seconds. Sweet malt and a bit of fruit dominate the smell. Much less hops than I was anticipating. Still it smells nice. The taste is bitter up front with noticeable alcohol. It's also a bit grainy, almost like a malt liquor, quite honestly, but not nearly as awful and hard to drink as one. It finished with mildly dry malt and a slight biscuity aftertaste. Mouthfeel seemed a little harsh to me. I attribute this to the noticeable alcohol. I simply cannot get over that. You can clearly detect the alcohol right away. I've had 9's and 10's with the alcohol more concealed than this. Drinkability is okay. The whole alcohol thing sort of irked me a bit, but overall, this is decent. You could do much, much worse.

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Photo of ddarden
4.27/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured dark gold with very little carbonation. Small white head that recedes very quickly. The smell is a mix of light malt and alcohol.

The first sip is much better than the smell and has nice sweet, malty profile that finishes fairly clean with a nice noble hop finish. The hops are definitely not over the top like Sam Adams and DFH Golden Shower. The finish is clean and very, refreshing for such a high alcohol beer. There is some alcohol warming at the end but the alcohol is very well hidden in this beer. Also, I am getting a little lemon flavor in the aftertaste as well. The mouthfeel is close to medium and coats the tongue nicely.

I am a fan of Imperial Pilsners and the Terrapin is another nice example. Like I said earlier, this beer is nowhere near as hoppy as either the Sam Adams or the DFH, but it is very good in a different, understated way. The drinkability of this beer is excellent which could be trouble on a nice hot summer day. I will definitely buy this beer again.

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Photo of rodrot
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a clear golden color with a 1/2 inch pillowy head. Aroma was primarily of malt with some spicy hop notes in the backround. Taste was malty and biscuity. I could taste some nutty flavors along with a little bit of hop bitterness. Mouthfeel was light to slightly medium bodied. This is an easy drinking beer. To my palate, malt was the dominant character with hops being quite restrained. Alcohol was not evident. Overall, a fairly good brew but nothing that will knock your socks off. I prefer the Rogue Imperial Pilsner.

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Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.12/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is a dull, tarnished brass colored beer with a thin brite white head. The aromas are musty grain, sugar, and spicy hops. Taste is a blunted metallic twang with slight pear fruitiness, and a dry, grainy finish. Mouthfeel is thick and slick. I would say this is "malt liquor done right".

Note: DO NOT drink with Twizzlers. You will be sorry.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured into the plastic cup crystal clear pale golden with a white wispy head that laced at the plastic cup as well as any beer could lace.

The aroma was fruity with a citrusy character. On the bottled version the aroma was also lightly bready with a bit of pineapple fruity character and a moderate caramel malt character.

The flavor was malty with a fairly sweet flavor when first contacting the palate. The beer contained a sizeable fruity character with pineapple and a citrusy bittering. The bittering was sizeable enough to keep all the malt character in check. The flavor was also lightly bready.

The finish was dry with a lasting bit of fruity, citrusy and bread character into the aftertaste. The body was medium with a moderate carbonation and a creamy mouthfeel. No apprecialbe alcohol warming was present in the beer.

So had had this on tap in Georgia last year and then earlier tonight on draft (20 oz) at the Mellow Mushroom in Boone. I got back to the room, opened the fridge and decided to give the bottle a whirl. After looking around the room for an opener I opted for the bottom side of the ironing board. Due to not having enough angle on the board I ended up with a shirtful of beer. That made me decide that this one must be reviewed. The bottle seemed a bit more malty that the draft I had earlier tonight.

12 ounce bottle.

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Photo of dgallina
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle dated best before 10/2006.

Pours crystal clear dark yellow, an inch of soapy and foamy head, good lace retention for a pilsner. Smells gently hoppy, a bit earthy and grainy. Clean tasting, with a dull american citrus hop bite and not much else. Slightly syrupy, weakly carbonated medium body.

Not very interesting. Trades the subtlety and freshness of a better pilsner for higher strength.

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Terrapin All American Imperial Pilsner from Terrapin Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.68 out of 5 with 208 ratings
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