Apocalypse Cow | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Apocalypse CowApocalypse Cow

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

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

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Reviews: 486 | Ratings: 2,091
Photo of JLeege
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Poured into a snifter, pours a clear orange color with two fingers of dense white head. Good retention and some splotchy lace left down the glass.

Smell- Tons of tropical citrus on the nose. Huge grapefruit, pineapple, and melon mixed in. Slightly grassy, with some sweetness underneath.

Taste- Actually starts out fairly sweet, with a light breadyness and a splash of caramel. Then you are hit with the big hoppy presence. Tropical fruits dominate again, grapefruit, orange, pineapple, and HONEYDEW (I have never described this as a flavor in any beer, but instantly thought of it). Slightly grassy again. A bit sweet on the finish again, with lingering bitter fruits on the tongue. Follows the aroma very well.

Mouthfeel- Medium body and carbonation. Incredibly smooth and creamy, doesn’t have any of the oiliness found in a lot of DIPAs (good use of the lactose milk sugar). Dangerously drinkable, no heat at all from the ABVs, this is ridiculous.

Overall- Not your prototypical Imperial IPA, but that’s Three Floyds being “not normal” for you. It’s different from Dreadnaught, but I think it gives it a run for its money as their best IIPA. Bad ass label as well! Have I mentioned the mouthfeel...

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Photo of kels
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bamadog was kind enough to split this bomber with me my last night in Cincy before moving. This was a seriously great way to celebrate!

Appearance: Pours a really nice honey burnt-orange with some hazy cloudiness throughout. Looks very reflective and holds a 1/2 finger well-retained super sticky white, frothy head.

Smell: Mmmm - smells delicious, juicy and mouthwatering. Light, sweetly bitter citrus, chewy grains and slightly floral honey. There's something else in here that I recognize but can't get...wait for it...pineapple! The pineapple juice comes through loud and clear in the aroma and smells amazing.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Feel is very full, soft and filling. The hops come through a little more bitter in the taste than in the smell and are balanced really well with a toasted caramelly malt and grain. It is sweet, bitter and toasted all at once. Alcohol is incredibly well-masked and only eeks out in the vapors at the end.

Drinkability: Amazingly high. The taste is so delicious and well-balanced, paired with a surprisingly full, light and refreshing feel.

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Photo of rldavis1116
4.65/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is probably my newest favorite IPA! I can only hope the one I just brewed will come close. Bold aroma with a creamy mouth feel. Awesomeness in a pint sized glass. Wish there were more barrels coming to Wisconsin soon. What a great beer to come out of Indiana.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.64/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A million hails to kels for this bottle...there is no better gift than a beer from the land of Floyd, Floyd and his other brother Floyd. Thanks Kelley!

Pours out a remarkably hazy rust-orange color...I'd even call it foggy. The head is modest but retains very well, all creamy and fluffy, with a lot of lace left on the glass as the head diminishes and the liquid slowly, repeatedly visits my tongue.

A humongous aroma goes to the place where the lines between candy-like malt sweetness and super-citric hoppiness blur. Orange-y, resiny, cake frosting-y, hard candy-y...I think the confection-like vibe of the nose is pointing to the lactose milk sugar that was used in this beer.

The flavor impression that came to mind upon the first sip was a push-up; you know, the ice cream deal, big with the kids, sold by the ice cream man, etc. I guess that falls under the category of "creamsicle." So, a push-up, but a really intense adult push-up. Big bursts of orange/citrus, both tangy and juicy sweet, with the lactose milk sugar bringing in a milky sweetness (that's easy math to do, but it's definitely here). There's also an unrefined grassy element, especially once into the finish. Really hoppy, quite bitter, and for sure a hophead's nirvana. The alcohol is probably there full-on in the flavor, yet the taste buds can do nothing but cower and submit to the hops. Yet, having said all this, it's got incredible poise. It's totally balanced. I can't rate the flavor highly enough, there's really nothing more one could want from a double IPA in terms of flavor. Except for maybe one more bottle.

Feels about as creamy as I'd expect, although not as thick, round and sticky as others of its type. Curiously buoyant in the mouth, which is a welcome change of pace. And thanks to the astringent grass/citrus rind/resin attack, my tongue's feeling pretty fuzzy just about now...

Enough malt is present to keep Apocalypse Cow from being a 100% tongue-ripper, but it teeters close to that ledge, while the lactose milk sugar addition adds a whole lot of "wild thing" to this beer, which would have been wild enough without it. So, 3 Floyds does it again: 1) great name, 2) great label, 3) utterly superb beer!

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Photo of bgreg3
4.64/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Alright first review

I just got lucky enough to pick this one up tonight along with a another bomber from fff.Three floyds has changed my perspective on beer forever and I will be reviewing alot of their brews because they're 5 minutes away from my house!
Lucky me!
Alright on to the cow...

App.- Hazy amber great look the head was about an inch and lasted for a good 10 minutes.

Smell- Smell is fantastic ! you can smell the citrus kick right off the bat along with the sweetness of the lactose milk sugar.

taste- First it starts tangy and citrusly , and very quickly you taste the sweetness of malt and milk sugar , it's mind blowing. Dreadnaughts cousin , but i think better.

mouthfeel- pretty average for a double IPA a little thick, I'd say about medium or a little above that

Drinkability- GREAT! for something this strong wow it drinks so well. a bomber of it will make your blood flow thats for sure.

Overall- If your a fan of dreadnaught its a must try.

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Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.64/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This pours a rather hazy orange color with a fingers worth of head that left good spotty lacing on my snifter. The citrus takes full force on the nose with plenty of orange, citrus, mango, and passion fruit. This is almost a dead ringer for dreadnaught on the nose. I can keep my nose all day in a pint of dreadnaught, so I am alright with this. The flavor profile is full again of all those citrus and tropical fruit flavors with a sizeable sweetness from the caramel malt. The mouthfeel is main difference between this and dreadnaught. The mouthfeel is thick and full, and I would say one of the biggest mouthfeels in a DIPA that I've personally encountered.

You can tell this beer has most of the qualities of dreadnaught, but it has some other differences that I actually liked better than dreadnaught. The mouthfeel was something I've never encountered in a DIPA before and it was most welcomed.

Awesome beer, and I hope this beer makes more than just one appearance a year.

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Photo of Rope
4.62/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy orange, with a hint towards redness. Thin white head.

Strong, not overbearing, hop presence that comes across as refreshing (like smelling lemon juice). The hop smell is a mixture of floral, citrus, and fruit. A very demure malt smell.

Starts with citrus hops, moves to the sweet, then before the bitter hop bit comes in it is almost a tea quality. This nebulous tea taste does seem to come from the shift of flavors to the bitter, and it is fantastic. It ends like a bitter IPA, like all Stone beers.

The hoppiness can coat your mouth pretty well, but the bitter makes it feel clean. Very refreshing on a warm day.

This kind of strikes me as a fraternal twin to Permanent Funeral, which has more sweet malt IIPA quality, where this one has a hop citrus bitter IIPA quality. Both fantastic, and excellent entry from FFF.

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Photo of herman77
4.62/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pale creamy orange with a bubbly white head. Pretty cloudy. Good amount of stick lacing.

S: Lots of tropical fruits, pineapple, citrus and a bit of pine. Some sweetness to it as well, not sure if this is from the malt or from the lactose. A bit of booziness. The fruitiness is over the top, awesome.

T: Sweet malt and fruity hops at the start. Lots of sweet malt, some of the sweetness has to be from the lactose. Lots of bitter, floral and pine hops on the backend. Long finish that stays bitter and a bit sweet.

M: Medium body, moderate to lower carbonation. Very smooth and a bit creamy. Very interesting mouthfeel, gotta be from the lactose.

D: Great drinkability. Goes down fast, but it is strong and it does show itself.

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Photo of jmarsh123
4.61/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep gold with a sticky 2 finger white head. Gorgeous.

As with most three floyds this one is hopped up. Lots of pleasant citrus hops with a little sugar cookie malt backbone.

Starts out citrusy. All out hop assault as the sugar cookie flavor is apparent too, but quickly drowned out by another rush of resiny hops. Finishes very creamy. I don't remember the milk sugar playing this large of a role in previous years, but I like it.

Creamy mouthfeel with good medium-low carbonation.

I really enjoyed this one this year more so than I normally do. I'm not sure if it's just a good batch or if this is just the freshest I've ever had it, but all aspects of it really shine. While the milk near the end of the palate is a bit weird at first, it really ends up working. I may going back to the well for another before the month is up. Too bad it won't cellar and only comes for a month every year.

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4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Three Floyds Apocalypse Cow

Appearance: Three Floyds July specialty selection pours a golden yellow with a slight orange tint. A rocky, soapsuds white head perches itself majestically atop the brassy liquid, but its reign is short lived as it settles down from an imposing three fingers to a more modest (yet tightly bubbled) one. Carbonation is evident, but not overly active, and there are no alcohol legs to speak of. It’s a pretty beer, but nothing really special.

Aroma: The beer smells mainly piney and sweet. There are definite notes of citrus and pine resin, but the milk sugar (the ingredient that sets this one apart as “not normal”) is also present towards the back of the aroma, slightly hidden, but lurking. There are hints of pear and tangerine as far as specifics go, but pine is really the dominant smell. A very slight creaminess is also noticeable, though just barely.

Taste: Complexity is an understatement here. This beer is simply astonishingly deep. The hops hit quickly up front, but are quickly washed away by a formidable creaminess and sweetness (from the lactose and the malts) that would be approaching levels of overpowering and unpleasant sweetness if not for the resurgence of the bitter, piney hops. These flavors fight fervently for the battlefield that is the taster’s tongue, though they eventually settle on terms of a tie and go down together, which is really a win-win for those of us enjoying this delicious drink. I wish I could give this more than five points for this category.

Mouthfeel: …is another homerun for the superior “cow” related beer (sorry, New Glarus; this Wisconsin native still loves you). It is smooth but not watery, bubbly but easy to drink down, creamy but not a mouth-coater. This beer, like the taste (and like all great beers) is balanced perfectly, with a bit of dryness that is not unpleasant.

Overall: Whatever reservations and lack of “It” factor Apocalypse Cow may have had in the first two categories of review it made up for where it really counts. This is a beer that proves sometimes we critics can judge a beer by its cover, or a book by its aroma, or however that goes, and that judgment can be wrong when it comes to the real substance of the book or beer or what-have-you. Those abnormal Floyds from Munster have done it again with this gem of an ale. I’ve been anticipating acquiring this beer for some time, and as it jumped straight into my Top Five beers, it is safe to say it was worth the wait and worthy of the hype. Though the final score will not reflect the awesomeness that is drinking Apocalypse Cow, regulations and rubrics must be followed. 18/20

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Photo of sweemzander
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. No bottled date.

(A)- Pours a fairly thick hazy golden hue that produced a good off-white fluffy head with good retention behind it.

(S)- A dry piney resin blast of lemon, lime, pineapple, and grapefruit citrus.

(T)- A dry piney wonderland full of creamy citrus notes very similar to the smell. A light bitter/dry finish with more citrus pine.

(M)- A great carbonation level and balance. A great hop citrus presence that meshes well with the creamy sweetness this puts off. A light bitterness at the end. Overall, rather smooth, a great citrus profile, and great ABV integration. Where is the 10%?

(D)- A great DIPA that I daresay might rival their Dreadnaught when fresh like this. Incredible smoothness and citrus fruits. Seek this out if you can; a great summer brew from a solid brewery, who sure puts out alot of different DIPAs!

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Photo of bluesbrewsguys
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a fine beer here. Intensely smooth Double IPA that has a strong citrus and floral hop aroma that is all brought together with a sweetness of lactose sugar is surly complex, but very pleasant from start to finish. Yet another great Three Floyds brew, and rate this near the top of my list of DIPA's.

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Photo of tut2528
4.59/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: pour is a light orange and gold, with high transparency. Thick and frothy head formation, about 2 fingers worth of retention and lacing is enormous. Carbonation is high as well

S: huge hops! Deep citrus and exotic fruits (mango, grapefruit, and peaches) are picked up. An ever so slight burnt malt character.

T: Hops and more tropical fruits (mango, grapefruit, peaches) are the main player here again. Lots of citrus. There is a nice slight burnt sugar malt that sits in there as well holding this one together. It’s actually a very unique brew and very well put together

M: solid medium bodied. The hops are excellent as they do not sit on the tongue for an epically long period of time like some other IPAs will. This allows me to want to hit the glass again. Alcohol is present on the upper lips and gums but it complements the beer quire nicely.

O: impressive. Really did not know what to think of this beer and I found it quite enjoyable. I am pretty stubborn when it comes to IPAs, but this one was definitely one of the nicer ones I’ve had in a while. Definitely a unique brew and thought that the balance of the tropical fruits and hops were amazing. And the backbone that keeps this all together was quite impressive as well. Well done FFF, well done.

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Photo of DAllspaw
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in tulip at 3F brewpub. Light orange, with some haziness but definitely looks substantial in the glass. Nice 1 inch off-white head and incredible lacing, very sticky.

Smell was everything you'd want from a double, loads of citruis and pine, but not a grapefruit bomb either.

Taste was out of this world. Tons going on with the hops and malt but I never tasted any alocohol, likely a product of the lactose, which greatly smoothed out ths taste and frankly enabled me to taste more of what's in there. .

I have a new favorite from 3F. I only wished they sold in growlers, this is incredible.

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Photo of mikereaser
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle on 10/30/09.

A - Pours an orange copper color with a layer of fine bubbles on the surface

S - lots of piney and citurs hops, lemon, orange, just a totally amazing aroma

T - grapefruit & orange upfront, sweet malt & a slightly bitter hop finish, a really flavorful hopbomb

M/D - medium body with good carbonation, just a really drinkable beer, somehow its 10% which you really have no way of knowing

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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.

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Photo of inlimbo77
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber bottle poured into DFH Signature glass. No bottle date, but this is a seasonal (summer) beer so I assume from 2011 batch. Thanks to exitmusic for this one.

A: Really nice light orange color. Some hop haze from being cold I think, right out of fridge. One finger white head, with tight tiny bubbles. Nice crisp lacing on glass with the swirl. Really nice carbonation rolling off bottom of glass. Edit: hop haze clears and it's clear light orange color.

S: Grapefruit and pineapple sweetness on the nose. A little bit of breadiness, but it's a good balance point

T: Wow. Really interestingly smooth DIPA. You get the hop bite on the front of the tongue but it really mellows in the center of the mouth. Nice easy finish too. Lactose sugar help with this creamy finish maybe? It's different then any other DIPA I have tried. Definitely different from Arctice Panzer Wolf which was a palate killer (in a good way)

M: Medium bodied with a smooth mouth coating.

O: One of a kind DIPA. Love the hop blend and balance of malt and the amazing finish. Yet another 3 Floyd's gem.

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Photo of IrishHockey
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I think this is my favorite beer that I have had from Three Floyd's. It's kinda like a kicked up, sweeter Zombie Dust IMO. Has some citrus notes to it and its kinda sweet, but not over powering sweet. I paired this with the pulled pork sandwhich from the brew pub (I recommend this too).
This is one that I would have to be careful with though. It drinks easy and has a fairly high alcohol content.

Served on tap at the brew pub in a snifter 8/2012

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Photo of blackearth
4.57/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased from the Blatz Beer Cave in downtown Milwaukee. Poured a clear, bright golden body with a white head. Aroma was piney -- smelled like Christmas even -- with hints of sugar. Mouthfeel was full bodied with medium carbonation to keep it on the smooth side. Good malt sweetness with a little oak, balanced with a more subtle hops approach that lasted far beyond the finish. No detection of alcohol in the finish. This beer was pretty much amazing.

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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.

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Photo of sevopie
4.57/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Going off memory, as I tried a few brews with a couple friends yesterday, but had no notes handy. Biggest thing that struck me about this beer was how it seemed to get sweeter as it warmed, the lactic sugar really starting to shine about halfway through the glass. As with a lot of DIPAs, it hides the ABV% rather well, and the bitter hoppiness seemed well balanced with the malts and the sugar. Out of the FFF brews I have now tried, I think this may be my favorite.

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

Thanks itsthepleats for sending this bottle in the trade

Clear medium amber. Head is bright-white, and fluffy.

Huge hit of pine resin and citrus. Grapefruit, tangerine, and oily zest. Lactose sweetness runs right behind it. Malts are big and loaded with sweet bready, caramel, and mildly roasted aromas. Slight grassiness and earthiness as well.

Aggressively hoppy. Pine builds as an oily, resinous, strongly bitter component. Grapefruit rind in the mix. Huge malt sweetness augmented with the super sweetness of the lactose sugars. Bready and nicely roasted. Caramel malts add another layer of sweetness. Orange and touches of tangerine as it warms.

Moderate body that leans toward full. Moderate carbonation. A touch dry. A touch creamy.

Less aggressive than other Three Floyd's DIPAs. Huge flavor, but nicely balanced for what it is. Lactose adds some backing sweetness, but ultimately the hops dominate the lactose sugar.

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Photo of JoePat
4.57/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very hazy pale almost orange color with thin white head.

Very pronounce grapefruit, citrus aroma at first and barely there but detectable as it warms. Not much else in this beer. Very hop forward in the aroma.

It taste like 3F worked very hard to get the perfect balance between malt and hops in a 10% ABV beer. Once they found that perfect balance they added a mountain of hops to that beer and Apocalypse Cow was born. A hop heads dream.

Mouthfeel has the usual 3F smoothness. I don't know how else to discribe it. It is so smooth it goes down effertlessly.

This is a double IPA I feel I could drink all day.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.56/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many, many thanks to mikeyv35 for the generous extra. 22oz bottle into a New Belgium goblet.

The pour presents a murky, peach-colored brew with a scant cap of cappuccino foam. Aroma positively bursts with tropical fruit: pineapple, mango, papaya, sugarcane, apricot. It's a hophead's delight, and I am reveling in it.

The flavor announces that the hops have taken over, and my tastebuds welcome the coming Apocalypse. Big, juicy hop cones spray sap and resin across the palate, palpable in their greenery but not overwhelmingly bitter. The fruitiness is not lost either, as it accentuates a slick backdrop of caramel & toffee malts. Mouthfeel borders on burdensome, but blends the booziness well with a biting carbonation level and behemoth body. This may well be one of my new favorite Double IPA's. Highly recommended.

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Photo of roger617
4.56/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into snifter

A: 4.25 Pours bright golden with 1 finger of head. Great lacing.
S: 4.5 Powerful hop aroma. Nothing short of what I'd expect from 3F with this style.
T: 4.75 Amazing flavor profile. Great hop flavor balanced with a strong bitter sweet malt. The lactose is present, but by no means dominant.
M: 4.25 Silky smooth, well carbed.
O: 4.5 3F never ceases to amaze me. This is one delicious beer that I would recommend to any fan of the style.

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Apocalypse Cow from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.18 out of 5 based on 2,091 ratings.
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