Islander IPA | Coronado Brewing Company

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very good
306 Reviews
Islander IPAIslander IPA

Brewed by:
Coronado Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by scottoale on 07-18-2006

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Reviews: 306 | Ratings: 1,126
Photo of HalfFull
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass, offering almost an inch of soapy foam. Golden amber in color, this beer offers nice retention and artsy lacing.

Nose is well balanced with tropical fruit and a touch of pine. More expansive and less piney than is typical on tap. This bottle carries a bottle conditioned sense to it with lingering lace and a creamy flavor.

Again creamy and full in flavor, with orange hop notes throughout. Offers a firm bitterness nonetheless and a pleasant feel with a lingering bitterness on the finish. A nicely balanced ale that doesn't overwhelm.

Edit 11/14. Another local brew goes downhill. Fresh growler fill shows a subdued aroma(4.5 - 3.5), Taste and feel are thinner as well (-.5 each, as well as overall) and lacks the gritty bitter/texture on the finish. Good still but not what it used to be. More singular in nature as for aroma and taste, less complex.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice got a bomber of this for 6 bucks! Sweet!

A - Pours a dark amber color with a half inch of fluffy head

S - Slight pine resin with a hint of citrus or grapefruit hops.

T - Nice bitter hops presence that sticks around to the end of the mouth with a touch of malt presence to balance. Very solid.

M - Medium bodied and hoppy.

D - Well I was glad to try and and really wanted something hoppy so it was a win/win. Still I feel that even though I liked it I still have had better IPA's. Overall very good.

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Photo of JAXSON
3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of radhoesbro. Pours clear amber with a fluffy white head. Peppery nose, bitter pine and some sweet citrus hops shine. Big flavor. Nice and well balanced, a big bitter push from the pine and grass, and a grapefruit element with some residual sweetness to balance it. Nice IPA, works for me.

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Photo of drpimento
3.28/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured with a nice, foamy, frothy, very light tan head that lasted a while and good lacing. Color is a clear amber with bubble trails. Aroma is major grapefruit with lots of pine and a little other fruit along with malt. Flavor is like nose with the grapefruit/pine characteristics dominating all else. Body is good and so is carbonation. Finish is like flavor and fairly long. The grapefruit is not personally for me. Glad I tried it but I don't want any more.

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Photo of PDXHops
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler poured into a Duvel tulip. See-thru amberish gold with a 2 finger white head, good retention and a fair dose of sticky lacing.

Plentiful citrus in the nose, with some pine and honeyish sweethness. Stray floral and herbal notes. Nice mouthfeel; Islander manages a certain heft without a lot of malty sweetness. In fact, it dries out to a stinging and sticky pine finish. Loads of piny bitterness and grapefruit zest.

Overall impression: Textbook west coast goodness here.

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Chilled bomber into a glass. No date code that I could find, but the bottle had the code 136D11012 stamped on the bottom. Yes, a merry 136D to you too!

A: Pours a lightly hazy amber-gold body with substantial off-white head. Retention is really amazing; it feels like an eternity waiting for the foam to subside. Definitely builds the anticipation. Nice lacing down the sides: a series of sticky rings from the initial head, but each sip leaves register marks, as well.

S: This smells pretty fresh. It doesn't have the pure fruit bouquet of something like Sculpin, but it is very citrusy, just the same. Spearheaded by grapefruit pith and something more tropical (passionfruit, maybe?). But it quickly becomes very green, like wet pine needles, fresh-cut grass, even tea. Very perfumey. I just really enjoyed the hell out of this aroma.

T: The taste is a little lacking in comparison. It still has that fresh grapefruit pith, but whatever tropical complexity I detected in the nose is not discernible here. It's piney, but not as dominant as the nose would have you believe.

M: This is pretty well-attenuated; not too many residual sugars to sludge up the teeth. It finishes dry, with a lingering, tannic bitterness that reminds me of tea leaves. Not a particularly enjoyable aspect for me, but it's not a deal-breaker.

D: It's a shame this comes from a state that is oversaturated with amazing IPAs; it can easily fall between the cracks. It's quite a good beer. Now if only they would use some easily understood bottling dates.

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Photo of bohemiandonut
4.6/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle from a discount 6er. Great deal. No freshness date. Obscure bottling code on the bottom of the bottle.

This beer has a paler, straw-heavy color for an IPA. Yellow in the pint, orange in the snifter. To me this suggests freshness and hop-forwardness. A good sign. There is also quite a bit of flaky goodness at the bottom of the bottle, another good sign.

Smell is friendly lemonhead sweet with pine undercurrents. More and more flavors unfurl with the pour, apple, peach, grape, spruce and pink citrus rind. 1.5 fingers of head. Lace extraordinare.

I lucked out with fresh bottles this time, and for the second occurrence out of five, Islander knocks me to the fucking ground. The aroma is early Sculpin with more forest, the drink is bright and dry but chewy, unabashedly bitter but not afraid to show its sweeter side. I am ecstatic that this will be carried at Vons! Way to go Mr. Von!

Post-note: Even greater depth reveals itself. Each sip rides out on a different wave of herbal impressiveness. Unlike most IPA's, the finish is not simply bitter resin, but stems forth with leaves and flowers gone acrazy. Seriously, there is a distinct Belgian flavor to this bitch, a Saison-like spiciness reminiscent of Stone's Du Buff. Incredible.

I could drink this forever. God Bless America. Nevar Forget.

228 D-2 1005 (on the bottle)

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Photo of rfgetz
3.97/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a paler golden orange with cap of white head, sticky lacing. Whiffs of grapefruit and pale malt... simple but good. Taste again brings the typical west coast hop belnd... grapefruit, some citrus and tropical notes with a pale malt backbone. Again, quite simple but effective. Medum bodied, good dryness. A nice IPA that doesnt try to be stellar, just very good.

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Photo of feelmefoam
4.37/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This might be a sin to some, but I've never heard of Coronado Brewing Company before, so when I saw this bottle with a hot mermaid woman chilling on the front and a sticker that said 'IPA' at the store, I knew it was coming home with me. I'm glad it did.

The beer pours a murky honey color with plenty of light orange and gold highlights dancing around inside. Despite the 7+ ABV percentage, the finger of white, foamy head stayed around for at least two minutes. When it did fall down, it left lots of gooey lacing around the glass. I'm pretty impressed.

The nose on this thing is just as voluptuous as the mermaid on the bottle. Sweet, juicy citrus hops and sugary strawberry get jammed right up your nostrils with each whiff. In a good way. There might be a little bit of pale maltiness in there too, but who cares? This thing is tickling whatever part of my brain it is that likes smelly-good stuff. My favorite-smelling beer that I've had so far in my travels is Bell's Two-Hearted, but this is right up there with it. Fiver.

Islander is good on your tongue, too. Light and sweet orange followed by more citrus... probably grapefruit. A little bitterness sets in afterwards, which in turn is washed away with a bit of buttery maltiness. No alcohol noticed. A large amount of hops are kept from becoming feral by a malty leash.

Good mouthfeel, maybe just a little bit more thickness (seriously just a tad more) on top of the already pretty-close to medium-body and a teeensy bit more carbonation would make it a bit better. Still, it's smooth and works pretty well with the beer.

My only previous experience with the word Islander was the people that tried to eat Jack Sparrow and the shitty New York hockey team. This beer gives me a better appreciation of the term. Excellent beer, in my opinion. Maybe a few more hops and a little mouthfeel-tweaking would do it better, but that's just being picky. It got a rare Fiver in the aroma because of the ridiculous candied lemon-berry-hop scent and the flavor wasn't shabby either. The only downside on drinkability is that it's runnin a 7.5% and I don't have more of the damn beer. I'm a fan and I need to keep my eye peeled for more Coronado beers in the future.

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Photo of Florida9
3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear gold. Pours with a good 2 fingers of rocky off-white head. Excellent retention and lacing.

S: Bitter grapefruit and little tropical citrus/fruit.

T: Slightly sweet pale malt followed by a good dose of grapefruit. Moderate bitter hop finish.

M: Medium in body with appropriate carbonation. Slightly drying quality to the beer.

D: A fine, everyday, sessionable IPA.

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Photo of hopsbreath
3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle of this IPA poured into a pint glass at 8am after a 12 hour night shift. The pour yields a huge soapy sandstone white head on top of a golden blood orange tinged body. A little haze in the body shows this ale to be bottle conditioned. The exceptional lacing as this beer draws to a close borders on world class.

The smell is sugar cookies and tropical fruits intertwined together and dancing in the aroma. So far we have a winner.

The taste is sweet pale malts with a heavy dose of grapefruit membrane. It seems that this IPA is very well balanced which is surprising for a California IPA. Were I blindfolded I believe I would have identified this as an East Coast version of the popular style.

Mouthfeel is lowly carbonated and moderately heavy. It almost seems cask conditioned even though it was a bottle poor. This is very oily and exceptionally smooth. Truth be told, this may be the smoothest bottled IPA I have ever had. Very good and enjoyable.

This drinks fast! I'm going to have to keep an eye open for more of these in the future. A bit of a surprise coming from a beer I knew nothing about, but a pleasant surprise none the less. Recommended!

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Photo of ZeroSignal
3.94/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle, no date

A - Pours a light, slightly hazy yellow-orange with a thin, one finger white head. Retention settles to a thin layer; sticky lacing

S - After the pour the initial nose was very floral, but as it sits a more piney cascade presence makes itself known. There is also a light, sweet malt aroma with some citrus in the background

T&M - Medium bodied with nice carbonation. The pine flavors follow through as well as a light spicy note, finished off with some citrus. Sweetness from the malt provides some balance.

D - A good IPA, nice flavors that balance well together. Easy to drink

Good brew and I'm glad it's available on the East Coast; don't go nuts to find it, but it's a pretty decent offering

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.16/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter.

A - Pours a gorgeous pure orange color with a nice white dense head. It recedes slowly and it is sticky and very attractive. In terms of look this beer is up there with the bests.

S - Sweet and citric grapefruit aroma is very strong and delicious. Nice flowery bouquet is also present and also a nice bread hint slightly balances the hops.

T - Starts off with a very sweet and delicious grapefruit and citrus flavor. Some slight fruity esters are in there as well and a nice boozy warmth is also felt. Some nice orange flavors as well. The malt has a hard time showing up but its there and slightly sweet as well. This beer is delicious even though the finish disappoint a little bit because its not as dry and bitter as other IPAs'.

M & D - Nice medium body with good CO2 and a nice flavor profile. Could be a a little more bitter. Great beer.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer bottled on no one knows. Poured into a Bruery tulip. Beer is amber and mostly clear. Big soapy head of white bubbles, medium and small. Carbonation is low but steady. Lots of lacing on the glass.

Aroma is all cascade and chinook all the way. Smells great.

Beer is medium body and light on the flavor in the front palate. The bitterness at the back is really nice though. There is no sweetness and just this kind of earthy piny-ness in the back. Highly drinkable.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - This poured a golden orange in color with a nice, easy, slightly off-white head.

Smell - This is a nice bouquet leaning towards heavy hops. They are full of fresh, aromatic pine that is not overly resiny and mixed with some wonderful tangerine and to a lesser extent grapefruit. The malt certainly plays the lesser role but is not to be undone as it has wonderful caramel flavor that's not overly sweet. All in all it is a terrific, natural aroma.

Taste - The hops surprisingly carry over well into the taste. They are still with a little more grapefruit than shown at the nose and the malts are rich and again not overly sugared or falsely sweet. The two main characters, the hops and the malts, mate extremely well putting this IPA way above average. There's also a slight nutty taste that just adds to the complexity.

Mouthfeel - This is a very slick and rightly bittered medium-sized IPA that lingers dryly on the palate.

Drinkability - I developed a personal affinity for this beer as the night wore on. It is well-balanced with quality ingredients and unique enough to stand out from the pack. It doesn't hit you with a sledgehammer but is serious and just raw enough to make ya say hmmm.

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Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a stemmed pilsner glass.

A: Pours a nice golden amber hue with a solid head that dissipates after a few sips and leaves a nice amount of lace from start to finish.

S: Sweet sappy pine with a bit of citrus spice.

T: Fresh cut grass, grapefruit spice, balanced well with sweet nutty malt.

M: Lightly carbonated, medium bodied, extremely clean and dry. Someone mentioned a resiny aspect in the mouthfeel and I completely agree; I picked up on that in the smell as well - super sappy.

D: Real easy to drink - the maltiness of it really balances the beer's hoppiness nicely and makes it easy to polish off a 6'r no problem.

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Photo of farrago
3.65/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good fluffy two finger's worth of cream white foam, larger bubbles so it steadily settles down to a layer across the surface, wide lacing streaks with above average persistence. Filmy orange color, inclining more to yellow than red, you have to get pretty much eyeball to glass to see any carbonation. While the glass is still inches away from your nose you can smell the tangerine and pink grapefruit citrus, the pine and honey brushed challah bread sweet as well, full-on ripeness in the apricot, peach, mango, pineapple scents, ginger root, few notes of bitterness and certainly no real herbaceousness, the malts oddly don't seem to develop a distinct personality. Full-bodied, here there's an edge, tempted to call it more acidic than herbaceous even though the dried meadow grasses and pine have bite. The juiciness of the tangerine, pink grapefruit, white grapefruit tempered by a welcome sour streak, not as one-dimensional as the nose. The breadiness "browner" as in rye or wheat bread. As with the former, more cut to the jib of the pineapple, papaya, nectarine, peach fruit, especially as it warms. The maltiness seems generic and without much character. All this said, it's not a loser and can be chugged easily if ice cold. Even better if it's free.

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Photo of StevenBilodeau
3.52/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This was a doozey...

I really like IPA's, and this one is pretty damn good, probably ranking up there with Stone's IPA or Ruination IPA, also the Green Flash or Belgium's favorite Piraat.

This beer has a nice hoppy taste, a really good picture of what a IPA should taste like.

However, this IPA comes out a little darker in color that most IPA, but then again, this is an American IPA, so it doesn't have to be as Pale as its European counterparts.

Pours a light brown amber with golden hues, and straw color like body, when held to the light. Nice Head, great lacing.

This is a good IPA.

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Photo of Ryan011235
4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter on 7/9/10

Thanks to scottyshades

A pleasant shade of amber with golden hues around the edges. Just a touch of haziness; seems more dense than cloudy. The head rose to one & a half fingers though it has thinned to a skim & patch of bubbles. Pretty good lacing so far (gets splotchy by the end).

Citrus hops dominate the nose with all-encompassing juiciness. Grapefruit, tangerine, zesty lemon, orange peel with hints of mango, peach & maybe a spot of pineapple. Offset by toasty malts; biscuit & caramel. Faint yeast undertones. Pine notes manifest with warmth.

The taste features a ramped-up pine presence allowing for a prominent bitterness throughout. The citric elements, though spicy & zesty, are stuck in a supportive role. As such the beer is more resinous than juicy. Toasted malts & a not-too-sweet caramel backdrop round things out. Grapefruit works its way back in toward the finish.

Medium bodied; as mentioned above, it's resiny & gritty with a penchant for stickiness. With carbonation just a hair shy of average it's a beer in no hurry to leave. Dry pine bitterness & grapefruit pith linger.

Drinkability is quite good. Based on the nose I was expecting more of a juicy IPA, but it's plenty tasty regardless. I'm glad I got to try it & I'm looking forward to trying the Idiot IPA. Definitely worth a shot.

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Photo of Stigs
3.62/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16oz on tap at D's, served in a standard pint glass

A - came with still, lifeless thin layer of foam on top of a clear gold color beverage. very minimal lacing.

S - citrus heavy hops, candied grapefruit and oranges...lightly sweet and bittering. some faint alcohol.

T - begins with strong citrusy hops, very bitter grapefruit, oranges, some pineapple. not too graceful as the bitterness takes hold before being joined by some alcohol burn. definite West Coast as the malts as nowhere to be found. needs another dimension to it.

M - thin body with moderate carbonation. lacks a bit of "oomph" to it as everything kind of dissipates quickly.

D - not bad, not great. many other IPA's i'd reach for to get a hop fix.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.75/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Let's get things straight, I'm fortunate to live in a tri state area where I can go to PA and grab a mixed six pack with both Coronado, Green Flash, Stone, and Mission IPAs. This one is a golden orange hue slightly hazed with a bright yellow tinted white head with a nice even coating laced across my chalice. Aroma is simply exploding with grapefruit citrus tones and hints of tropical fruit juiciness more hop love from the Left Coast. Mild alcohol notes and sugary hops are evident in the nose, a nice mix of action going on. Flavors provide an eye opening mix of classic flavors, from the grapefruit pith, tropical fruit notes mango juice extract and heavy hop bitterness rolling around on my palate. That mix of sugary/malts and bitter/hops plays so nice together. This beer has it down the type of poetry that becomes a classic not a one time read. Mouthfeel is medium bodied oily slightly resinous hops streak across the palate. Carbonation is lively kicking nicely with hop burps after a few sips. Drinkability is incredible the type of beer I would love to find on draft, in fact I will seek this out in the Pittsburgh market, what a great beer here in the Ohio Valley.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.82/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Good amber appearance, maybe a little darker than your average single ipa, average head characteristics and lacing. Aroma was great, more pine than their double. Still had the fruity mango aroma.

Taste, much better, alcohol was in the background, not front and center. Pine resin abundant. Hopping abundant, bitterness is there and big, but in its place, not running wild like Hulkamania circa 1987. Lots to take notice of throughout. A little bit of everything, and at $4 a bomber, nice on the wallet.

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Photo of MrIncognito
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Magnolia's in Purcellville, VA

A - Somewhat hazy orange body beneath a 1-finer sticky head that fades pretty quickly. Very nice lacing, however.

S - Uber citrus hops with a nice sharp smell. Some pine resin at the end of each whiff. More tropical fruits revealed as it warms such as pineapple and just a little grapefruit.

T&M - Very much like smell. Huge citrus hop bit that is sharp and nicely stinging. Almost made my eyes water at first sip since I wasn't expecting such an attack from this beer. Hops dominate the flavor with big orange zest presence and a bit of pineapple. The aftertaste has somewhat of a soapy bitterness that isn't so pleasant. Not enough that it ruins the beer for me but I wish it wasn't there. Oily mouthfeel but enough carbonation to make this a smooth drinker.

D - I liked the beer and if you want just massive hop presence, this is it. Not a fan of the soapy aftertaste.

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Photo of mikereaser
3.89/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle on 12/24/09

A - pours a mostly clear copper orange with just a layer of fine bubbles

S - nice strong citrus, orange and grapefruit aroma, very nice

T - nice citrus taste up front, some oranges, then a nice hoppy bite

M - good carbonation, smooth mouthfeel, nice bitterness

D - could drink alot of this, nice IPA

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Photo of oberon
4.01/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass a clear amber infused deep golden with almost no head even after a fairly hard pour,just a thin quick to fade white head.Aromas are all San Diego IPA in its big citrus and resiny notes,a subtle but noticeable caramel malt element is there as well.Flavors have a deep fruitiness not just grapefruit and tangerine wich is expected,but also a bit of tropical fruit as well,its big and resiny late.A bit of a dull feel but its pretty full in nature,another good left coast IPA to seek out here.

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Islander IPA from Coronado Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 306 ratings.
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