Terrapin Phlux Capacitor | Terrapin Beer Company

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Terrapin Phlux CapacitorTerrapin Phlux Capacitor

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by oberon on 04-30-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 54 | Ratings: 189
Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +23%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Busy Bee in Raleigh

A - dark amber with a thin white head

S - bread, chocolate, floral, grapefruit, strong hop aroma

T - bread, alcohol, piny, grapefruit, chocolate

M - smooth, medium bodied, well carbonated

This to me is an odd in between version of a regular IPA and a black ale. It has characteristics of both. It's a solid beer worth trying.

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Photo of oberon
4.42/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The latest Side Project,#16.Poured into an imperial nonic a hazed deep amber with a thinner lacey slight off white head atop.Sharp resiny hops and light oak from the aging in the nose,some sweet alcohol zip is there as well,the hops are real assertive wich is a very good thing.Somewhat boozy and fruity with some caramel that quickly melds into resiny sticky hops,love the balance and love the big hops!This style is my favorite style when done right and this is done right,big hefty boozy malty and a large dose of deep resiny hops,I loved it.I love the hop burps left behind.

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Photo of beer2day
4.38/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Saucer as part of Raleigh Beer week.

Dark caramel brown pour with 1/2 finger of mildly red-tinted cream head poured into a snifter. Light retention and thick strands of lace.

Raisin and figs come to the nose first, along with burnt (almost scorched) caramel. Very nice balance of flavors, but not quite as strong as I was hoping.

Raisin and figs really come out in the flavor, especially in the finish. Finish borders on being sour. Beer gets a bit big with yeast. Moderate alcholol burn.

Syurpy smooth with substantial body.

Well done.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.23/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: 1.5 finger head with nice retention on a deep murky brown with no light getting through.

S: chocolate and caramel malts with breads, yeast, oak and cedar notes. Nicely complex.

T: very woody with oak and cedar prevailing in the middle and finish. Chocolate and caramel malts up front. Finish is slightly tart with also some brown sugar sweetness.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall:  a touch boozy which I think is accentuated by the strong wood presence. Although I feel the taste is simple, it does a good job of bringing in wood notes which dominate but don't offend.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange-ish to brown in color with a tan head. In the aroma, sweet vanilla, cinnamon, and mocha like. In the taste, well, it tastes like a coffee latte, with vanilla and cinnamon. A smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry coffee and cinnamon like aftertaste. Quite coffee like, good flavor and nice warming aspect to it too.

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Photo of argock
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz brown bomber into a small clear goblet. No freshness date. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $8.49.

A: Murky brown with soft short cap of light beige head with decent retention and only a few scraps of lace.

S: Vinous aroma with fairly bland malt but tannic oak with some herbal, earthy hopping

T: The maltiness is muddled and doesn't have enough sweetness, breadiness, or other desirable malt character -- mainly too tannic oak carries the flavor on its own with some dark malt sourness. The hops are herbal and earthy.

M: Soft carbonation with some boozy feel but not syrupy.

O: Not what I was hoping for -- I was hoping for something more in the vein of Oaked Arrogant Bastard, but instead this has some flat maltiness with very tannic oakiness.

Wow -- what a difference 10-11 months can make. Consumed at 55F from an oversized wineglass. My original overall score for this fresh was 3.28. I let one bottle age, refrigerated at 35-40F for most of the time period. THis beer has made leaps and bounds. This tastes like an exceptional oak-aged American barleywine with spectacular minty, woody, herbal, earthy hops notes, and big malt flavors with burnt caramel, toffee, rum raisin, and treacle. THe oak flavor has the slightest hint of vanilla but mainly finishes with a mildly tannic, slightly drying finish. The mouthfeel is low carbonation and there is still some booziness in the feel. I am really impressed and, compared to the fresh version, this is a completely different beer. I think this beer could probably be even better in 4-6 more months to let the booze fade a little further without going away completely and letting the malt flavors come together even a little more. Still, I am shocked at how much better this beer is with a pretty minor amount of age. I would seek this out and I plan to see if I can find it in town this weekend -- it blends the best of oak, American hoppiness, and subtle but rounded maltiness.

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Photo of jzauder
4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had a 22oz bomber on 6/13/2012

Appearance: looked like a dark Belgian ale, a very pleasing dark burgundy color. Just a little bit of foam that rapidly disappeared

Smell: A very clean, resin-y aroma. I picked up a cherry flavor at first with hops on the back end

Taste: You could almost confuse this for a barleywine with it's rich flavor. The oak barrels give it a heavy, almost whiskey-like aftertaste. Medium carbonation. It's a strong beer, but the alcohol sneaks up on you.

Mouthfeel: thick at first, but the aftertaste is very smooth.

Overall: I feel like this would pair well with a cigar. I'm not totally into the whole wood-barrel aging (usually because it mellows out any hop flavors), but the oak works here. It gives the beer a flavor almost like whiskey or brandy. Strong ales aren't my preferred style, but I would definitely try this one again and again. Very complex beer, but drinkable.

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Photo of Corkpuller
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I'm not normally a terrapin fan, but I'm not sure why this beer is so poorly rated...

This beer has a lot going on it. The aroma is very complex with an almost sherry (palo cortado) like oxidized aroma: chocolate, hazlenuts and toffee. It's quite boozy on the nose, but not much in the way of higher alcohols.

The palate is quite dense, creamy with some angular wood notes adding interest. The booze attacks and recedes in waves, with lots of flavor and aromas intermixed. It tastes pretty similar to the nose, but the push and pull is really what sets it apart.

I would probably only drink one of these in a sitting, but I really liked it - and I consider myself quite picky in the strong ale/barleywine categories.


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Photo of BEERchitect
4.08/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Like a bull in a china shop, Terrapin's Side Project 16 unleashes its brash and boastful taste on the palate with a flood of malt flavor, a pang of hop bitterness and the woodsy rusticity from oak- As this trifecta of taste pummels the palate, it seems to do so with some love and care.

Pouring a dark and russet brown, its rusty and reddish hues dip and weave through its heavy haze. Building a dense sand-stained head above, its tightly woven froth is in it for the duration, trailing with concentric rings at each sip.

Deeply malty with toffee, toast, brown sugar and a hint of molasses and maple, its savory and sweeter tone is supported by bready underpinnings, seemingly of spice-cake or rum-cake. As notes of orange peels and sawdust waft about the nose, that fist sip is seeming more and more intimidating.

All that malty-sweet goodness of the nose is assured in taste. Those cake-like flavors are delicately laces with spice, toast and nuttiness to allows roasted chestnuts and French toast to come about. The middle balances with citrus tones of grapefruit, oranges and tangy verbena flavor. As the sweetness breaks apart slightly, its finish allows for a sharply resinous finish to dry the palate and bitter it up a bit. Lighter oaken echoes swirl about the palate as the malt further lifts and the hops latch onto the throat.

Full bodied and long to resist any fading, the bread and sweeter textures accompany the hops and oak deep into the finish. Its spicy alcohol bite and oaky powdery texture offers a slim sense of lightness even though its cake character continues in lighter capacity.

Reminding me of Stone's Oaked Arrogant Bastard Ale, the balance, power and controlled chaos is both impressive and scary- both for the brewer and for my own taste buds.

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Photo of Chaney
4.07/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Duck Rabbit snifter.

A: Poured a dark, reddish-brown, with a mocha ring around the brew that stuck around throughout the session.

S: I got straight up melted Jolly Rancher first and foremost. Also, so bright candy such as Pixie Stick dust, Mallow Creme, vanilla, and wood.

T: This was pretty sweet, yet very complex. This was definitely "American" in nature, and made no bones about it. Dark fruit is not the best way to describe this, so I'll go the candy route: Bit O'Honey, Snickers, Almond Joy (wood aging... coconut influence), Twix (the cookie part), marshmallow and TONS of butterscotch.

M: I got a good bit of solvent alcohol after a few sips to be honest, but I think that will meld with the other ingredients quite well over time. A moderate amount of lacing and quite a bit of sugar.

O: I've never tasted anything like this from Terrapin and I believe that overall, it was a success. I think I'll grab a bottle for the cellar. This one was meant for that anyway.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.06/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The murky brown body reminded me of a Belgian Dubbel, and was topped off by a two finger thick head. The look was unremarkable, but the oaky and hoppy smell was quite a nose hair burner. The taste was presented a somewhat unpleasant mix of wood aged astringency and hop bitterness up front when the beer was cold. There were notes of coffee and chocolate mid palette, and the finish was woody and abrupt. I found the beer to be quite thin bodied. Gets sweeter and more rounded with a warm up, which takes a lot of the harsh edges off.

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Photo of Vec2267
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - deep mahogany with a thin tad head that retains well

S - brown sugar, oak, fruit, slight spice

T - oak, chocolate malty presence well balanced by a piney hop bitterness, boozy

M - less than syrupy but quite chewy

Malt dominant with heavy wood tones. some notes of chocolate and fruit. A big boozy bomb with character, right up my alley and a nice example of the style.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 22oz bomber picked up at Greens ATL, pored into a snifter glass

A - A dark amber, zero clarity. 2 fingers of head and some lace retention.

S - Sweet, brown sugar, and oak aged prevalent. The sugary sweetness overwhelms though

T - Very sweet malty taste, just like a strong ale should be.

M - Full bodied, well carbonated.

O - Very well done for the style. Not the best oak aged ale I have had, but good none the less

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Photo of Pencible
4.02/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: This poured a clear garnet with a good amount of tan head.
S: It smelled like oak and dates and fresh fig and earthy caramel and nutty malt, with some copper and biscuit.
T: It tasted like metallic copper and sweet fig and earthy caramel, with some oak and aged cherry and nutty malt. It had a pretty clean and bittersweet aftertaste.
M: It was watery with a little carbonation. Pretty flat body.
D: This had a very classic English old ale taste, like it just came out of a cask. The scent and taste were delicate and enjoyable, but the body was a little weak. The finish was smooth and mellow, and the alcohol was well hidden, so it was easy to drink. Really more of a sipping beer though. Just begs to be aged, but is nice fresh.

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Photo of avalon07
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a brownish color and a thick, cloudy consistency. There was a small amount of foamy head that lasted a good amount of time. Good lacing.

S: A sweet aroma of malt, light hops, and some sugary elements.

T: Tasted of some malt, light hops, a big shot of toffee, and some oak as well. This is a hard flavor to pin down, but very interesting and lively.

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

O: American Strong Ales tend to be sort of strange beers, and this is no exception. Still, it's well worth a shot. Drinkable.

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Photo of billab914
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into my Devil's Backbone glass. It poured deep mahogany in color with a thick, fluffy, tan colored head to it. Nice lacing and retention as I drank it.

The aroma has a pretty big oak presence to it with notes of wood and some vanilla. Some very nice malty flavors come out in it as well with some caramel, toffee and a slight dark fruit flavor to it.

The taste shows a little bit more of a roasted malt, slight coffee like flavor to it. Caramel and toffee sweetness come out more towards the finish. The oak really compliments well with some very nice notes of vanilla and oak.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied for the style with carbonation being a little above average. Overall, I thought it was a very good beer. Everything really comes together very well in it, and the oak compliments nicely. Very flavorful and drinkable beer overall, and one of the better side projects in recent memory in my opinion.

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Photo of 57md
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light chocolate brown with a finger of head that dissipated rather quickly but left some lacing on the glass anyway. The nose is nicely hoppy. The taste is malty with a touch of sweetness followed by a mildly bitter finish. There is also some lingering alcohol warmth on the end as well.

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Photo of SGDJosh
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From notes taken on 8/12 at home:

A - Pours medium-dark brown with a light head on top.

S - vanilla, sweet malts, oaky goodness.

T - Caramel, vanilla, and not much noticable bitterness even though it is 88 IBUs. Rich flavors but balanced.

M - Medium body with good carbonation.

O - I had this before and wasn't impressed but this was a really good batch. Great balance between body, flavor, and aromas.

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Photo of bum732
3.88/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S: Bold nuttiness with some wood. Some fruitiness as well.

L: Very dark brown, white head that dissipates, some lacing.

T: Cedar wood with a nutty brown malt. Some toffee and coca, but quite dry throughout. Some hop character, but restrained. Some wood, but definitely in balance. Finishes fairly dry with residual maltiness and wood.

M: Medium bodied, medium carbonation. Just a bit of alcohol.

Really enjoyed this. Like a brown ale times 10. Not too sweet or malty like a barleywine. Really well balanced overall.

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Photo of One2Remeber
3.84/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Beige, frothy head. Dark, murky brown body. Tons of carbonation rising to top.

S: Clean, sugar, fruit tartness. Not picking up a whole lot.

T/M: Dry, coco powder mouth feel. Strong oak presence over powers a back burner feel of alcohol. Pine/earthly hops blend well with a hefty malt body with big notes of caramelized sugars and sweet figs.

O: Can not say I have had anything like this. Tons of flavor that all play nice together. One of my favorite oak beers because of the subtleness.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Barcade, Philly, PA

Poured a dark mahogany, mostly clear, with a finger of tan head; moderate retention and lacing. Lots of toasty elements in the nose, bready, nutty, citrus and pine hops with a dash of spice. Taste of toasted bready, somewhat nutty, caramel, very woody, a dash of dark chocolate, moderately hopped with notes of citrus zest and pine, and again a little bit of indistinct spice. Medium body, pretty easily drinkable, for a decent beer overall.

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Photo of southeastmat
3.82/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Ruddy brown almost a bit red. A good head on the first pour that goes away quickly but leaves a thin head as you drink.

S: Great smelling brew. Cherry. Fruit. Just a bit of wood on the back end of this beer.

T: A big bold beer. It hits up front with sweet malt then fades into some bitter hops. A great dark cherry fruit lingers on the finish.

M: Thick and complex. Coats the palate and really hits up front on sweet caramel malt.

O: This is a great 'end of a hard day' beer. It has a great warming quality and a terrific fruit taste that mellows out as you keep drinking. That oak comes out as it opens. You put this with a big rib eye or a nice piece of prime rib - prognosis awesome.

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Photo of Suds
3.8/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 23 ounce bottle, this is a brownish colored brew with a one finger tan-colored head. The beer is clear, dark, and had a notable ruby highlight. The scent is all about malt. Toasted, bread-crust and some fruit...there's a pine and herb hop scent in the background, but malt stands out. The taste is sweet, malty, and more than a little warming. It's not quite hot, but the alcohol comes through, which is a little distracting. Full in body, nice carbonation...spice and hop-bitterness linger in the aftertaste. This is a solidly good brew.

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Photo of BlackBelt5112203
3.77/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into a pint glass at cellar temperature.

L – Ruby brown color with a 2-finger tan frothy head. Really nice retention but no lacing. Clear with lots of carbonation bubbles.

S – This beer has so much going on in the aroma: rich malt scents with caramel, toasted bread, molasses, and brown sugar notes as well as dark fruits like cherries and plums, earthy leather, and a healthy dose of oak. This smells terrific.

T – Unfortunately, the taste doesn’t follow the nose so much. It starts off sweet with caramel malt, molasses, brown sugar, and a little bit of plum. Then, a sharp oak and alcohol astringency takes over. There’s some spicy and citrus hop bitterness at the finish, but the intense amount of oak just about takes over the taste as soon as it appears. There’s not as much balance or complexity as the nose suggested.

F – Medium-bodied with good carbonation, a sticky, sharp, and astringent mouthfeel, and a dry, spicy, and slightly bitter finish. Woody dryness and astringency lingers and blends with the warmth from the alcohol.

O – This isn’t a bad beer, but it could definitely be better. I was expecting so much more after the outstanding aroma. The main pitfall is that the oak is overdone. Woody dryness can be a really nice addition to a beer if it’s subtle. The strong oak presence adds an unpleasant astringency to the beer and hurts both the taste and the mouthfeel. I found that it became more bearable if I sipped it like a glass of scotch instead of drinking it like a beer. If Terrapin held back a little on the wood, this beer could be very, very good.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle - $7.99 at Olde Crabapple Bottle Shoppe in Alpharetta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a very dark reddish-brown body with a tall, unabashed, light beige head. A smudge of lace here and there as it goes. Well, it looks promising, hopefully it'll perform better than their anniversary beer I had earlier in the day.

Smell: Oven-toasted nuts and a notable note of dark bread crusts with a small edge of roast, chocolate, but it's mild, at best. Spicy oak wood, zestfully earthy hops hinting at dried citrus, pine needles, sun-dried grasses, and even a sliver of cleansing spearmint.

Taste: The first sip made me think of an emboldened Hop Karma given a dose of oak, and, well, that initial impression stayed with me until it was long gone. Toasted bread, toasted nuts, with a small helping of lowly sweet caramel and even less than a hint of chocolate and roast. Earthy, piney hops with some citrus, a little mint, and a full-on grassiness. The oak character remains fairly subtle, be it in the nose or the on the tongue, though warmth allows it to come out more, though the hefty hopping and myriad of dark crystal malts provide plenty of interference. Robustly bitter throughout. Dry, grassy, slightly oaken finish with a long bitterness.

Mouthfeel: A little beyond medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Overall: The fervent Side Project release pace has, at least for now, slowed to about a one-per-year trickle, though it hasn't stopped the Terrapin new-beer parade as we've got Easy Rider, Road Warrior Kolsch (didn't catch it), Tree Hugger (been meaning to try it), their 10th Anniversary beer (ugh), and, presumably, another Reunion: a Beer for Hope release. This one, I thought it was alright -- I still can't shake my thinking it's a Hop Karma bumped up and given a touch of oak.

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Terrapin Phlux Capacitor from Terrapin Beer Company
3.66 out of 5 based on 189 ratings.
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