Terrapin Hop Karma IPA | Terrapin Beer Company

very good
1,009 Ratings
Terrapin Hop Karma IPATerrapin Hop Karma IPA

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
"The Terrapin Hop Karma IPA (formerly known as the India Style Brown Ale) is a head on collision between a hoppy, west coast IPA and a complex, malty brown ale. Brewed with 5 varieties of hops and 7 different malts, this hybrid style represents the best of both worlds." 65 IBU

Added by athensbeermaster on 04-02-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,009 |  Reviews: 544
Photo of corby112
3.26/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark chocolate chestnut brown color with slight amber edges when held to a light source and a foamy yellowish tan head. Good retention, slowly fading into a lasting ring that leaves sporadic spots of lacing.

Chocolate caramel malt aroma with a huge earthy hop presence. Hints of dry earthy pine with lots of dank resinous hop oil. There's also some hazelnut and caramel biscuit malts.

Very well balanced and quaffable but slightly watered down thin body. Nutty malt presence with hints of biscuit and caramel that balance out the earthy bitter hops. This beer may be a bit too well balanced because the earthy hops and dry pine notes are a bit overshadowed by the nutty malt flavors. Neither flavor is dominant resulting in an average session beer.

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Photo of MTNboy
3.76/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It has a mildly hoppy aroma, it was weaker than I expected. This beer mainly smelled of caramel malt. The body is a red/brown color that is more brown towards the top and red towards the bottom. Nice tan head and lace. The lace is tight and has a lot of staying power. The taste is metallic at first but becomes more sweet and caramel like as you go. The aftertaste is bitter and somewhat fruity. I would say the mouthfeel is medium for this type of beer.

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Photo of cypressbob
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

355ml, served chilled in a Duchesse de Bourgogne glass

Its a lively pour, creamy off white head forming immediately, soon settles to a thick whisp though. Rich dark ruby hue, it really surprising to see such a dark yet hopped brew at this abv of 6%

Huge zesty nose, unctuous fresh citrus hops followed by heaps of mango. There's a dry buttery diacetyl note in there too which backs up the brown ale aspect. Touches of lavender and purple violets.

The very first flavour is a thick malty kick, surprising for anything this hopped. Its buttery and somewhat vinous. Then come the hops, crisp and fresh, zingy on the palette all finished off with a whack of biscuit malt crunch on the finish. Dry acerbic hops on the finish and tiny hint of alcohol on the breath

All in all a very interesting departure within the style. Hard to say whether its a hopped brown ale or an IPA with a whack of dark malts thrown in but it is a superbly drinkable little offering.

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Photo of PhxHorn
3.13/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a brown color with a reddish tinge to it, with a quarter inch of tan head. Smells of malt. Taste was a bit of a problem--it had the malty flavor you'd expect from a brown ale, but also a slightly sour taste in there. Didn't really detect the hoppy flavors people are talking about. Very bitter aspirin aftertaste. The sour flavor really ruined it for me. Not a disaster, but something was out of whack.

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Photo of Risser09
3.15/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter - fridge - best by 1st week, 3rd month

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with no highlights or imminent carbonation. A 1/2" light brown, coffee ice cream colored head is built and shows decent retention. Rings of lace remain behind.

Smell: Generous hops consist of grapefruit and pine in front of a malty brown ale. An earthiness is probably due to the mixture of both bitter and malt sweetness.

Taste: Bitter pine and an earthy truffle taste. Brown, slightly roasted caramel malts give a bipolar taste to the beer. Mixed emotions about this flavor.

Mouthfeel: Bitter and sweet, though the beer mostly relies on bitterness for its notice ability. Medium body, smooth, with good carbonation. Earthy.

Drinkability: An okay brew. There is so much going on that creates a dichotomy of flavors. The earthiness is distracting from what could have been an awesome beer.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.18/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass. Since this is an Indian Brown ale, perhaps we are witnessing the emergence of an new style. Hoppier than a brown ale, more roasted malts than an IPA. Interesting to see where these IPA incarnations take us. Beer is dark brown, head is two fingers, brown and has medium bubbles. Carbonation is moderate and the head leaves some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is hoppy with an odd sulfurish component in with the malt. The hops are more citrus hops than piney, its subtle.

The taste is slightly metallic and there is that sulfur character again. Not as good as I remember. The bottle does not have a "best if consumed by" date on it, so this could be an old batch. I'm not sure what to say, sorry Terrapin. The drinkability suffers because of the unpleasant flavors. The mouthfeel is full and good, I just wish that off-flavor wasn't present. I'll give this beer another chance, but as it stands now, its only mediocre. Sorry.

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Photo of Redwood21
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: this beer poured with almost no head, and there is a little bit of sticking on what does appear its a dark brown beer. this is not a bad looking beer but it doesn't look great

S: same deal as the appearance, nothing big or amazing but its not bad i just cant pick anything out:

T: simple but delicious, i could easily enjoy a six pack of this beer without pause. it has a fullbodied creamy taste that has some earthyness and a light hop body, incredibly clean and very taste filled delicious.

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Photo of Clydesdale
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep, reddish-brown color. The medium brown head is moderately tall, dense, and creamy. Retention is good, with some solid lacing.

S: Somewhat roasty malt aromas, lending some sweetness as well. Hops are primarily citric, lending a fruity/spicy character to the overall beer. Smells like a brown IPA to me.

T: Firm roasted maltiness up front. Definite hints of chocolate and brown sugar. A firm hoppiness adds an interesting bitterness, with citric and some spicy floral notes. Again, they seem to have hit pretty well the style they were aiming for.

M: Medium-full bodied. Carbonation is somewhat creamy. A flash of dryness into the finish.

D: This succeeds in being a hoppy brown ale/dark IPA. That said, I can't say that the end result is fantastic beer. It is definitely good, however. Worth trying for the novelty and the solid execution, especially if you like hoppier brown ales.

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Photo of jadpsu
4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a definite amber in color with a copious tan head that, at best, has average staying power. Decent even side lacing is apparent.
Aroma: There is a lot here. Spicy hops are strongest but maltiness and breads are there too, providing a good balance.

Starts out sweet but has a dry finish with some bitterness. Nice combination. It's smooth and is an enjoyable ale.

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Photo of DeeMented
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to HeadyHops81 for sending me this one.

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a glass beer mug.

The beer poured a dark amber, slightly reddish. It had a creamy, off white head that managed to stay almost to the bottom of the glass. Lots of soapy lacing that wanted to slide slowly down.

The smell was sweet and malty, with a lot of fruit. Citrus and floral hops. Smelled good.

The mouthfeel was medium. Not overly carbonated, not overly thin. Fairly smooth.

The hops dominated the taste, as expected. The malt sweetness and citrus flavors just started at the beginning, before the hops kicked in about mid-swallow. It finished a bit crisp, with a lingering bitterness.

Overall, a good, hoppy IBA that delivers exactly what it promises.

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Photo of Anthony1
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent caramel with 3+ fingers of tan head. Stellar lacing & head retention. Pineyness & grapefruit, some caramel as this warms. taste has pineyness, grapefruit & toasty malt up front. Leafy hops, dryness, more grapefruit & a bit of caramel as this warms. finishes with flinty dryness, a hint of fruittyness, pineyness & more grapefruit. Medium bodied, moderate carbonation & excellent balance. Pretty easy to drink

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Photo of apbarwood
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, dark brown. Loses some points in the head retention/lace department but there's a bit of a tannish rim around the glass and some small lace. Mostly citrusy hop aromas with a touch of maltiness to it. The flavor delivers what the aroma promises in spades. The hops are in the forefront with a juicy grapefruit flavor mingling with some wet pine needles. The malt does a nice job of counterbalancing the hops and gives it a bit more depth with a caramel-like sweetness hiding in the background. The flavors swirl around and hit every part of the palate. Had it with a plate of NC barbecue and it was absolutely phenomenal. I think Dogfish Head's Indian Brown is a better beer but this one is definitely a close second in the Indian brown department and worth a try.

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Photo of danielharper
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown hazy body, thin brown head that dissipates quickly. Translucent.

Smell: Surprisingly hoppy, a nice crisp bitterness over a nutty malt backbone. Dark and roasty. Very interesting.

Taste: A nice balance of malt and hops. Sweet nutty flavors with a delicate hop bite to finish it off.

Mouthfeel: Moderate thickness, high hops, and a nice carbonation.

Drinkability: Quite drinkable. If this India Brown Ale concept takes off, I will for one be a very happy man.

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Photo of Seanibus
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

You wouldn't think of a brown ale as "refreshing" on a hot day, but this one works. Like the interesting work of Duck-Rabbit, terrapin seems to be part of an emerging trend of refreshing dark beers from the South.

Pours deep reddish brown with a very fine ivory head. Aroma is roasty and sweet and malty, earthy and a little spicy. Flavor is roasty and woody, like a nice cherrywood tobacco. Lots of tobacco. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.

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Photo of kevinjosephlee
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a glass.

A: A brown color with a tan head with low retention. Very resilient lacing though.

S: Malty, sweet and rich. Caramel and nutty qualities.

T: Medium-high malty flavors; sweet caramel. The beer sat out of the fridge for 15-20 minutes before being opened. The warmer temperature allowed the bitter (and somewhat piney) hops come through.

M: High carbonation, with little to no alcohol warmth in the finish. Not a "clean" and smooth finish. Finish is resiny (mouth feels "coated"), and yet it is dry.

D: Very drinkable

Overall: I really like this beer. It hits the mark perfectly. The brewers knew what they were after and they got it done. Although Terrapin's high-gravity Imperial Pilsner and Rye Squared were my previous favorites from this brewery, this beer is great.

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Photo of Mistofminn
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass. This one is the color and consistency of coffee. When held into the light, it shows beautiful shades of raspberry and violet...absolutely gorgeous. Careful pour produces a nice one finger light tan head. Has great retention and shows some nice lacing.

The nose is very malty. I get a light hop bitterness, but it is nearly drown out by the malt complexity. I've never smelled a beer quite like it. Sweet malts, yet very earthy, and it has a nutty character. Caramel, possibly.

The taste is the same as the nose, but in the opposite order. The hops dominate the taste, as the bitterness outshines the complexity of the malts. Very interesting if you ask me. I get nice earthy and piney hop bitterness, and a nice coffee like character from the malts. Very sweet. Pretty dang good.

Mouthfeel is on the medium size, and has a little carbonation bite and a barely memorable bitter aftertaste. Drinkability is good.

I've had only a few India Brown Ales, but I've liked them all. As a sub style, I think I'm quite fond of it. This probably isn't the best I've had, but a great beer none the less. If this were available in my area I'd definitely get it again. Big thanks to beernerd81 for the chance to try this. Thanks Ben!

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Photo of BDLbrewster
3.94/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Pours a french roast coffee color with a thick looking frothy mocha colored head. Thick sticky lacing and no visible carbonation apparent.

The smell is full of chocolaty malts, rich but not overly roasted. Some toastyness and chunks of coffee and some noble hop aroma round this one out. Different.

Chocolaty, toasty malts kick this one off. Sweet, toasty and full of malty goodness. Chocolate and toasty malt complexity mark the front of this brew. Some bitterness is apparent in the middle, burnt malt or bittering hops... Can't really tell. A nice spicy undertone works its way to the forefront near the end. Finishes floral and and clean with some mild bitterness nipping at the sides of your tongue.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side for the style and the is an expected lack of carbonation, yet it finishes very nicely.

Overall the amazing complexity blew me away. Honestly I didn't expect much out of this one, but wow was I surprised. Beautiful brew, would definitely seek out again.

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Photo of whiplash3825
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown with a juicy 2 finger tan head that sticks around.

Nice scents of dark ripe fruit... some chocolate and maybe coffee also.

Flavor is a great balance of dark toasty malts and a (surprisingly) hoppy taste... nice balance in this.

Mouthfeel is maybe a tad thin for the style. Just about a perfect amount of carbonation.

Goes down super-easy... but the malts and dark fruity flavor makes this more of a sipper than some others. It's worth it just so you can savor some of the complex flavors. Nice, Terrapin!

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Photo of rfgetz
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Moderatly dark brown, ruby highlights, slightly hazy. Off white head with ok retention and lacing.

S - Medium roasted malts... little hints of milk chocolate and carmel. Faint hop scent.

T - Follows the scent... medium roasted malts... nuts, milk chocolate, carmel. Decent hop on the end.

M - Medium bodied, lightly carbonated.

D - Good flavor, easy drinking, nothing fantastic but good.

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Photo of ectomorph
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle within its' freshness date poured into a pint glass.

A - appears dark brown until held up to the light, which reveals a crystal clear but dark ruby body. The aggressive pour formed a tall head that faded rather quickly, leaving a small sheet on its' way.

S - Smells of light chocolate malt and some spicy and grassy hops. Interesting.

T - A hoppy brown? Yes! There is a considerable dark roasty backbone of malt, but this one starts with a bite and ends with a citrus spiciness that leaves me drooling and wanting more.

M - Silky mouthfeel with good carbonation.

D - I consider the ABV a tidge on the high side (I'm old), but very high.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from a sixer I picked up while on vacation in Myrtle Beach.

Pours dark brown in color with some translucency around the edges. About a quarter inch of head forms on the pour, but is gone before I take a seat.
Smell is hops, roasty brown malts and just a hint of floral notes from the hops.
Taste is hops, but there's a citrus flavor dominating the flavor now. A little thin in the mouthfeel, but has some good flavor. Easy drinking and highly sessionable. Good beer.

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Photo of qchic
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Medium brown not unlike cola, with reddish highlights. Modest ecru head. Aroma is a battle between citrusy, peppery hops and dark bready malts. This reminds me more of rye bread more than any actual rye beer I've had, with distinct notes of caraway seed. The hops seem more aggressive in the flavor, with plenty of citrus and pine, backed by roasty malts, caramel, almond, and molasses. A touch of fruitiness makes this one even more fascinating, and while there is so much going on, this medium-bodied brew is quite easy to drink. A fun, tasty hybrid. Recommended!

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Photo of jnn4v
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured much darker than I was expecting (yes, I saw "brown" in the title). It's a mahogany / espresso color. Mild light-tan color head. Relatively translucent when held to light.

S: An abundance of hop scents (ie. grapefruit, lemon, and some floral elements) are the first things I notice, followed by some roasty characteristics like a hints of cofee and cocoa powder. Maybe even some spiciness?

T: Very interesting beer. It's my first India Brown Ale. I've had lots of IPA's and several black IPA's now, but never a brown IPA. The flavor matches the scent elements almost to a "T". Some citrusy hoppy bitterness, some caramel malt sweetness, and some roastiness with a mysterious spice character. That last part almost reminds me of a winter warmer. Intriguing and pretty tasty.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation. No sediment. Nicely balanced and not extreme in any part of the texture.

D: Seems very drinkable. I could look forward to this daily.

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Photo of Sammy
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle thanks Radek. Pours a dark brown body with a white bubbly head, and is lacey. Hoppy aroma is present. Complex malt profile, though licorice most noticeable. Creamy mouthfeel. A bit complex. Burnt caramel in finish. Good for the style. Good hoppiness.

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Photo of RomaniIteDomum
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice and dark, great capuccino head, nice lacing. Great looking beer.

The smell is very nice. I could smell the hops as I poured it. Upon further inspection the hops still lead the show, but settle down before the malts come out.

The taste was a little bland compared to the smell. The hops are there and the malt is hiding. Not necessarily a problem, but the hops are much less robust in the mouth than in the nose. It is also a little watery.

Like I said above it was a little watery. The carbonation was nice, though.

Aside from the loss of flavor issues it was a decent beer. I would have it again and could see myself drinking more than one in a sitting.

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Terrapin Hop Karma IPA from Terrapin Beer Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 1,009 ratings.
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