Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Apocalypse Cow | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
93
outstanding
480 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Apocalypse CowApocalypse Cow
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
9.5-11.0% ABV, 100 IBUs - This complex double India pale ale has an intense citrus and floral hop aroma balanced by a velvety malt body which has been augmented with lactose milk sugar. With this different take on an IPA we have brewed an ale that is both pleasing to drink and, once again, “not normal.” Cheers! June release.

Added by mdm46410 on 11-23-2008

BEER STATS
Reviews:
480
Ratings:
2,057
Avg:
4.18
pDev:
19.38%
 
 
Wants:
627
Gots:
319
For Trade:
15
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 480 | Ratings: 2,057
Photo of mfnmbvp
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, no bottled on date present. Finally getting around to trying this one from Three Floyds. No abv listed anywhere on the bottle.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a typical cloudy golden orange IPA body with a finger of thick frothy off-white head. Leaves excellent sticky strands of lacing behind. 4

S - A typical DIPA aroma: citrusy, herbal, and orangey, with some sugary sweetness. The lactose definitely fuses with the malt well, and both are discernable. Mild notes of vanilla. 4

T - Taste is the same: citrusy, orangey, hoppy, bitter. Sweetened sugary finish from the lactose.

M - A smooth, creamy, easy-drinking beer. Medium-full bodied with nice carbonation. Lightly earthy, piney, & bitter finish mixed with some milk sugars.

Overall, an alright lactose DIPA offering from Three Floyds. Smooth, creamy & easy-drinking for the supposed 11.00% abv, with a nice hop presence. Recommended.

Three Floyds Apocalypse Cow -----4/5.

 966 characters

Photo of timc100
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big astringent, juicy hop flavors. Aroma of lighter bright juice fruits of peach, dank mango, slight pineapple, and a little pink grapefruit. Tons of pine and sticky resin. Substantial bready, biscuit malt. At the very end some sweet juicy strawberry.

Big, creamy and smooth on the palate. Bitterness kicks on the finish. There is more of a sharp grapefruit, more astringency and the pine sap kick. A very creamy, full IPA.

Well balanced, very well brewed. Great IPA from floyds. In the conversation with permanent funeral and dreadnaught.

 552 characters

Photo of dleigh
4.31/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was skeptical, but the lactose sweetness really works with the hoppiness to produce a beautifully sweet, creamy, hoppy IPA. Dangerously drinkable for an 11%er.

 161 characters

Photo of spacecake9
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really like this beer, and was pleased to find a couple fresh bottles on the shelf. Not very bitter, almost creamy, maybe a result of the lactose milk sugar. Very drinkable in spite of the ABV. Another winner from 3 Floyds.

 228 characters

Photo of do_ob
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bomber into a snifter. Appearance is clear, dark gold with a 2 finger head of sticky white foam. Strong pine and citrus on the nose with a touch of tropical fruit. Medium-light weight, and has a very crisp, smooth mouthfeel. Sweet tropical fruit up front with a strong citrus/pine presence middleways. The hops really come alive on the back end, and you're left with a resiny bitterness.

Overall, very good. Not my favorite 3F IIPA, but still an incredibly solid beer. It's very well balanced and drinks surpringly smooth for 11%.

 532 characters

Photo of MarkQ617
4.49/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at the pint room. Outstanding. Very light color belied a strong flavor. Excellent lacing down the side of the glass. Big fruity citrus flavor. Very crisp. Easy mouthfeel. Exactly what youre looking for in an imperial.

 233 characters

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

Look - Mainly orange with yellow tint. Thick, small bubbled, slightly off white head. Good lacing. The body is hazy.

Smell - There is that strong dankness. Vanilla. Caramel. Pine. Pineapple.

Taste - The only difference in the taste is the bitterness and alcohol. A little orange and extra citrus thrown in there too.

Feel - Creamy. Milky. Small burst of carbonation but not too much.

Overall - 4.5s across the board. I need this side by side with Cimmerian to see which is my favorite Floyds DIPA (so far). I really like this beer's balance.

 549 characters

Photo of kbwalters
4.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured cold into a tulip glass. Bottled on 7/2 and consumed on 7/26 2014.
Look = 4.0 Pours a cloudy golden orange color with 2 fingers of frothy white head. Good retention and solid dense lace.
Aroma = 4.0 Hop forward, mostly floral with mild citrus that became stronger as the beer warmed. Some booze comes through and stings the nose.
Taste = 5.0 Terrifically complex taste with this one. Start outs with hops, floral and citrus. Mid palette hits a sweet malt flavor followed by a mild bitterness. The sweetness returns at the end that leads to a unique sweet type aftertaste with less bitterness. I think the lactose comes in at the end.
Feel = 4.5 Full bodied and creamy for a DIPA. Medium to high carbonation gives it a crisp balance. Again, pretty unique.
Drinkability = 4.0 = The balanced taste and well hidden bitterness (despite the 100 IBUs) improves this DIPAs drinkability a lot.
Overall = 4.425 Another terrific DIPA from 3Floyd’s. Really complex brew and very tasty.

 992 characters

Photo of SierraFlight
3.78/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tulip. Nearly opaque hazy yellow-orange with tall off-white head that settles to one finger of foam. Bubbles rise throughout the drink. Aromas of pineapple, citrus rind, floral hops, and cotton candy. Flavors follow with orange and sugar forward then finishing with a dry, full-bodied, boozy, hop bitterness.

 336 characters

Photo of Barnoloid
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy golden/orange color with a deep white head. The initial taste here comes off as slightly off milk. As you get into it this heavily hopped DIPA opens up with further complexities. Lactose element gives this a creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Almost like a cask ale. A good beer - one worth seeking out once a year

 321 characters

Photo of Bowers-Brew
4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Clean amber body with ~2" white head when poured aggressively.

S - Citrus, hops, and sweet caramel malt. Nothing overpowers the nose.

T/M - Lots of hops, slightly more pine/grassy notes than citrus. Interestingly sweet and creamy finish/texture.

O - A very drinkable DIPA with a high ABV (well hidden) and a unique texture & flavor. I wouldn't drink this all the time, but it's quite tasty and a little unique. I'm excited that I still have so many 3F's brews to try. Prost!

 491 characters

Photo of kkleu357
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nice hazy orange body with a thick lasting white head. Wonderful fruity citrus aroma. Taste is lots of citrus, some earthy pine notes. Very velvety mouth feel. Awesome beer.

 173 characters

Photo of PaulyB83
4.36/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap in a straight pint glass.

A- Thin white head that didn't stick around. Murky light orange, can just see the shadow of my finger through the glass.

S- Pineapple forward, light tropical, citrus, slight spicy hop note maybe. Bit of hop nostril burn.

T- More grapefruit and citrus with a bit of floral with some medium bitterness. Only slight alcohol presence but nothing that makes me think it's 11%. Thought it might be sweet but it is a nice sweetness that still let's the hops come forward.

M- Full, silky but syrupy.

O- I nice and interesting IPA with the addition of the milk sugar. Man 3Floyds knows how to make a hop forward beer. Really can't believe this is such a high ABV beer.

 710 characters

Photo of tlery
3/5  rDev -28.2%

A - Cloudy, deep orange hue with a retaining head that leaves lots of lace around the glass;
S - Citrus forward with a sweet, malty backbone;
T - Balanced hops with a malty finish, clean and no real alcohol heat, very drinkable for the style;
M - Crisp upfront, fades to that mouth coating reminiscent of milk stouts (it's the milk sugar, duh);
O - Subtly different expression of the same idea that's come to epitomize FFF Brewing: pale, hoppy, drinkable, and reliable, yet ultimately boring. I can't give too much credit to a brewery that fails to (ever) surprise me.

 568 characters

Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%

A - Pours a cloudy orange with a one-finger foamy white head. Light amount of sticky lacing.

S - Aromas of piney hops, bright citrus, and sweet malts.

T - Flavors follow the aroma. Lots of orange and grapefruit upfront. The citrus is followed by a big amount of malty sweetness. The piney hops come through in the finish producing a nice bitterness.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Nice silky mouthfeel. Dry finish.

O - Another winner from Three Floyd's. Very drinkable despite the ABV. Would definetly drink again.

 531 characters

Photo of screamking
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%

22oz bottle poured into snifter.

Aroma notes: orange, pineapple, lemon, brown sugar.

Tasting notes:grapefruit, lemon peel, brown sugar, apricot, pine.

Very sugary from the start, added with the hops up front and this one will blast you early and often. Not a complete bitter bomb but one worth a look if your able to find it.

 332 characters

Photo of leantom
4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Regurgitated from notes I took while drinking this beer. Here goes:

A: A cloudy orange (can still see through to the other side, however) with a massive, fluffy, white head. As the head dissipates it leaves plenty of lacing. I'm beginning to think that FFF has the appearances of their beers down to a T. Splendid.

S: Very intricate if not somewhat funky. Pacific NW hops impart smells of citrus, grapefruit and pine (mostly the latter two). However, there is a large presence of crystal malt and lactose sugar. The latter imparts a very milky smell. I'm not sure I like it, but I have to give FFF points for piquing my interest.

T: Funky, but good. Mixture of hops and milk/malt sugars. Initially taste the crystal malt followed by an aftertaste of milk and hops - yes, the milk and hop tastes are interspersed, which is what I think the brewers were going for. The taste rather follows the nose. Very complex.

M: Excellent. Thick and creams - lies heavily on the tongue and fully coats the palate.

O: Very good. An interesting and complex beer.

 1,051 characters

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Hazy golden orange copper brew, with a tight white head that only reduces slightly and laces as much as any beer I've seen.

S - Hops are front, with a grapefruit element coupling with a grass and floral line. Sweet malty characteristics come through, as well, an element suggestive of the lactose sugars involved.

T - As hopped as this is, and we have a huge hop presence, the interesting thing is how restrained this is. A bold fruitiness is quickly eclipsed by floral and grass, linking up with a sweetness that drops out quickly to close with a sharper bitterness.

M - For as hopped as this is, the bitterness is reasonable, though drying is still present. As much ABV as is listed, this comes across smooth and subtle. Overall, surprisingly balanced.

O - This is one of those beers that doesn't seem like it should work on paper. A big hop IBU and milk sugars meld together so well, and the floral and subtle fruits offer a delicious counterpoint to the bitter close. I'm sure to get more next year.

 1,011 characters

Photo of BB1313
3.52/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 7/2/14. 22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy copper with a fluffy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves sticky lacing and great retention. The aromas have their signature hop profile, but in a very subtle way. Lots of malts with a good amount of citrus. Slightly floral as well. Some caramel. Some bread notes as well. The best way to describe the flavors is "bittersweet". Lots of caramel. The lactose obviously gives this beer a sweetness to it, but there's no shortage of hops going on. Lots of lemon and lime. Some hints of orange peel and grapefruit. There's even a very subtle spiciness to this one. There are some alcohol notes that are present. I'm not saying it's boozy, but there's a little heat. Mouthfeel is great. It's full-bodied and very creamy. It has active carbonation, but still remains fluffy. This makes a nice sipper and a nice brew to relax with. It becomes even more enjoyable as it warms up.

The craftsmanship is very impressive, but it doesn't get me overly excited. It's not really worth the price of admission, in my humble opinion. I definitely enjoyed my time with Apocalypse Cow, but it's not something I'll be dreaming about.

 1,184 characters

Photo of don1481
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Got the very last 22oz bomber at Woodman's in Oak Creek, WI! Poured into glass

Appearance: Pours a hazy, almost milky, orange with a few bubbles that lazily float up to the top. Has an off-white head that rapidly diminishes with little-to-no lacing on the side of the glass.

Smell: Vibrant citrusy smell with pine. Very bright smell.

Taste: Tastes like your really well executed IIPA with a little bit of a twist. Strong pine notes, some good grapefruit, some dank, and a pinch of milk sugar sweetness that really sets it apart from others in the genre.

Mouthfeel: Much creamier compared to the run of the mill IIPA. Slightly sweet aftertaste, which is definitely different.

Overall: I'd love to get another bottle of this next year when it comes out. Definitely worth my while.

 783 characters

Photo of larryarms847
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours an opaque golden orange with a very velvety head.

Smells of citrus, flowers, and sugar.

Citrus and floral hops are pleasantly accompanied by a sweet sugary balance.

Mouthfeel is smooth, silky, and lush all the way down.

Overall another fantastic IPA from 3F, they really can't go wrong with this style.

 312 characters

Photo of denver10
2.83/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.25

Pours a dark gold with full off white head. Aroma is nice with some fruity citrus hops, a touch of bread, and some sweetness from the lactose sugars. Not a fan of alcohol showing itself in IPA's and there is a ton present here, makes it hard for me to notice much else in the flavor like the citrus, florals, or sugars. A creamy mouthfeel. Overall, maybe a result of my personal preferences but the alcohol presence in this was a killer for me. I typically stay away from any (I)IPA that is 10% abv or greater because of the heat they can bring, but gave this a chance because of the inclusion of the lactose sugars had me curious. Bad choice on my part, not a fan at all and dumped most of my bottle.

 701 characters

Photo of guityler83
3.53/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 6/27/14

A: Poured into the trusty FFF Teku glass, the head formed 2 fingers tall with a white, almost creamy color. Great sustain, it took over a minute for it to fall and left behind a coat of lacing with no dry spots on the glass. The beer is a murky orange color.

S: A moderate aroma with a candy like impression at first ( sweet tarts and juicy fruit ) The hops come through as pineapple, mango, guava and an underlying dank pineyness. Picking up a mild amount of booziness in the nose along with some thing that reminds me of milk ( i know there is lactose sugar in it but not sure if I'm detecting it or im tricking myself into detecting it)

T: Moderately firm pine and pineapple bitterness that mellows out after your taste buds adjust. The sweetness from the lactose follows giving the hops but not your palette. There is a mild level of bread crust malt flavor but its negligible. The hop flavors come back towards the end with more developed and over-rippened stone fruit. The balance is on the hop side but the sweetness provided by the lactose makes this a uniquely tasting beer.

M: Creamy with a moderate level of body and carbonation. Alcohol warming is moderate. Also picking up some harshness in the back of the tongue from the hops.

O: A unique beer for sure, but this beer fell short for me. The lactose provided to much sweetness for my liking and the booziness combined with the harsher hop bitterness made this less drinkable then many of FFF's other IPAs.

 1,491 characters

Photo of cbutova
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed at Rising Sun CG, Glacier National Park, MT. Full notes taken to my phone while out of a service area.

A- Last beer at Rising Sun in Glacier National Park Montana is poured from the bomber to goblets with a deep orange body with some haziness. A thick white cap forms to two fingers with a whipped cream texture and stellar retention. Massive frothy ring leaves thick webs and sheets of lace.

S- Hops hit my nose just after the bottle opens in a pungent aroma that is hop dominated. Zesty citrus rind of orange and lemon, resinous pine, floral, dry pineapple and spicy earthy notes. Just a slight backing of grains and yeast.

T- Bright zesty hops rule the taste buds delivering orange peel, grapefruit juice, clemetine pith, dry pineapple, pine resin, dank and floral character. Malts and yeast only present to provide body and alcohol which comes slightly into play.

MF- Here is where the cow truly comes out. Lactose and whatever grains are used combine to form an uber thick and creamy body. It is extremely silky and smooth and finishes with a bitter blast.

I was glad to see this in bottles during my stop at Three Floyd's. I never knew how lactose could work in an IPA but they pull it off with Apocalypse Cow. The hops are juicy and pungent and the beer is an assault on the palate that is mediated by the silky lactose. Hopefully I can sip on this gem again someday.

 1,388 characters

Photo of Lemke10
4.57/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This pours a hazy, golden orange color with a thick foamy head. The aroma is mild but has a decent aroma of hops. The taste is big, bold, and delicious. The texture is smooth, milky but has quite the bite when it comes to hops. This is perhaps one the best beers I’ve had from Three Floyds.

 292 characters

Apocalypse Cow from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 480 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe