Electric Unicorn White IPA | Phillips Brewing Company

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Electric Unicorn White IPAElectric Unicorn White IPA
Very Good
97 Ratings
Electric Unicorn White IPAElectric Unicorn White IPA

Brewed by:
Phillips Brewing Company
British Columbia, Canada

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Electric Unicorn is a hop-infused White ale; best enjoyed while riding a mystical mono-horned laser beast, racing through the galaxy to the sonic backdrop of screaming metal guitars. Time to ditch reality and take this India pale fairy tale for a ride.

Added by Rutager on 09-13-2012

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Ratings: 97 |  Reviews: 24
Photo of Sammy
3.86/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of biboergosum
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bottle - what's with the laser-eyed beast theme on the labels of the more recent Phillips offerings? And were that I could accompany this with some bitchin', shreddin' metal tunes, but my better half happens to be watching Real Housewives reunions while I do this. Compromises, me auld sons.

This beer pours a very hazy, pale golden yellow straw hue, with two fingers of puffy, tightly foamy, and creamy off-white head, which settles rather slowly, eventually leaving some random sharp wave crest lace around the glass.

It smells of somewhat tart orange rind, mild pale grainy malt, earthy Belgian yeast, softly spicy coriander, and a slowly growing bitter pine hoppiness. The taste is moderately sweet wheat grain, a subtle lemon citrus fruitiness, some weak earthy spiciness, throttled Low Countries yeast, and nicely even piney, leafy hops.

The carbonation is soft, and generally quite yielding, the body a near full flag medium weight, and quite adequately smooth. It finishes off-dry, the sweetness of the wheat and barley malt bravely pushing through the now staid yeast and still weirdly IPA-worthy hops.

I know that this is different from the majority of the previous Belgian IPAs that I have come across, in mostly one simple area - it isn't astringent, either via yeast, hop, or whatever. It's actually quite pleasant - soft and approachable, alluring in its deft balance. A stellar intro for the style, and equally appropriate for those who might deem themselves old hands at such.

 1,502 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a hazy yellow color ale with a nice pure white foamy head with good retention. Aroma of citrusy hops with lightly sweet wheat malt notes is quite refreshing. Taste is a nice mix between some lightly sweet wheat malt notes with some citrusy hops notes which are well balanced against the malt bill. Body is pretty full for style with good carbonation. Doesn't’ re-write the rule book but very enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of Erik-P
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of spinrsx
3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of biegaman
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I can't even count the ways in which "White IPA" should be considered a misnomer. Regardless, Electric Unicorn does, at least visually, straddle both worlds; it has the pale yellow colour of a Witbier but doesn't look remotely like one given that its clear, sunny disposition is polar opposite to the style's characteristically clouded complexion. It does, however, share the moussy head and solid retention.

An aroma heavy in orange peel is no surprise given that flavour is typical of both IPAs and witbiers; this perfumy, potpourri-like air is exactly the kind of thing I was anticipating. Other tropical fruits can be found in there too, pineapple and grapefruit being the most obvious two.

It's not hard to tell this beer hails from the Pacific Northwest - the prominent weedy hoppiness in the flavour totally gives it away. While that pungency does factor into the taste it doesn't have the final word; an especially bright, almost candied citrus note buzzes around the finish like a relentless mosquito.

Not that I expect the brewer to follow the instructions manual on a recipe like this, but a texture this creamy would suggest that unmalted wheat and/or oats, frequently used in witbiers, made the final cut. Good call. That creaminess helps recalibrate the mouthfeel given all that pithy, fruit peel bitterness.

I've had so-called "White Stouts" (that, by the way, like this, were technically yellow) which made me roll my eyes. A "White IPA", however, which combines zesty orange peel and pungent, fruity hops is actually a hybrid that makes sense. Electric Unicorn is a pretty good beer. In fact, the only criticism I have is of the term "White IPA" which, let's be honest, is silly but doesn't really matter anyhow.

 1,737 characters

Photo of wordemupg
3.37/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

650ml bottle poured into tulip 19/9/12

A bright yellow with lots of tiny suspended particles, I don't see many bubbles but there's a thumbs width of foam that leaves some random lace

S pop the top and I get orange and coriander, I read the bottle and sure enough its a White IPA, more Phillips house notes that I just can't shake after I caught on. some peppery spice and cereals with some hoppy notes but IPA levels? you decide

T not as nice as the smell, tastes like a basic Wit with Phillips flavoring, lemon and a little more hops and booze then I associate with the style. I could take it or leave it

M not quite medium bodied and its airy too my surprise as I couldn't see much carbonation in the liquid but there's to much in the mouth

O its OK but I'm not sold on it, it would get nearly perfect scores for labeling however

its unfortunate really that I can't replicate the ideal serving conditions of "riding a mystical mono-horned laser beast racing through the galaxy to the sonic backdrop of screaming metal guitars" this one might get straight 5's if that was the case

 1,090 characters

Photo of Howlader
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of bylerteck
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Canada_Dan
3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of andrenaline
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of Rutager
3.58/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another awesome label and name. Unicorn, cliff, space, lightning, eagle head logo, psychedelic font. Could there be any more awesomeness packed into a single label?

Appearance. Pours a fairly clear straw-gold with almost a finger of white head.

Smell. Spicy hops and yeast, some lightly toasted wheat, a little citrus and a bit of onion.

Taste. Sweat roasted wheat, spicy and lightly floral hops, a little bit of fruity yeast, and a little bitterness in the back end.

Mouthfeel. Medium body, medium+ lively carbonation.

Overall. Interesting style. Lots going on and still quite drinkable and refreshing.

 609 characters

Photo of SDRedDevil
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of jrenihan
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of bumchilly25
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of schopenhauerale
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of ZachT
4.26/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Molson2000
4.4/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Not sure why this is categorized as a Belgian IPA when the label clearly says White IPA which would make it a wit with hops, not an IPA with Belgian yeast which seems to be what some people are expecting.

 204 characters

Photo of Kmat10
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of joemcgrath27
3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - clear straw golden with plenty of small suspended sediment, thumb of white head dissipated to a thin covering leaving plenty of sticky lacing
S - very yeasty and wheaty aromas, sour citrus, peppermint, and a mineral/vitamin aroma, very busy
T - peppery and grainy up front, a bubble gum thing going on, not much of the yeasty flavour here, a faint hint of plastic or rubber late in the finish, does not live up to the nose
M - fairly light and well carbonated, slightly thin, just a touch of dry
O - very busy to the detriment of the beer overall, it doesn't seem to add up to something significant, nice try but not my bag

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.77/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

650 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before Nov 27 2015 and served slightly chilled.

Pours a cloudy, pale golden-yellow colour, capped off by nearly one inch of creamy, frothy, sparkling-white head. Decent retention; the head remains in place for five minutes or so, steadily seeping away until only a bubbly, filmy cap and wide, foamy collar remain - along with a nice swath of delicate lacing. The nose is comprised of an eclectic mixture of individual aromas - lemon pith and zesty orange peel, floral/spicy hops, apricot, pine needles, grainy wheat malts and mild phenolics. Smells appropriate, but not particularly aromatic, for the style.

The flavour profile is quite approachable, with the white ale/witbier influences factoring in noticeably. Crackery, grainy malts and plenty of juicy orange citrus flavour get things started on the right foot, with some fruity, sugary background sweetness reminiscent of apricot and red apples. The citrus flavours take more of a lemony, pithy bent as you approach the finish, with floral, grassy bitterness dominating over all by the end. A touch spicy and yeasty in the aftertaste, with a suggestion of coriander. Medium-light in body, with assertive carbonation levels that aggressively agitate the palate, giving this beer a smooth, almost frothy feel in the mouth. I am not in love with this beer, but it has the thirst-quenching, refreshing quality of your typical witbier down pat, that's for sure.

Final Grade: 3.77, a B+ grade. Phillips' Electric Unicorn White IPA is a perplexing hybrid. Though it leans toward the hoppy side, this one largely lacks the profoundly bitter punch that hopheads will be hoping for - and likewise, the witbier vibe that this one has may not immediately appeal to fans of more orthodox Belgian IPAs. Electric Unicorn is undeniably refreshing and pleasurable to drink, but this one simply lacks the authoritative gravitas of the best examples of this style. Worth a try, I suppose - but at $6+ per bomber, it's not something I'd buy multiples of.

 2,029 characters

Photo of BigBry
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Beervana
3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Electros
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of taxandbeerguy
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

650 ml bottle purchased for $6.25 CDN from the LCBO. Good to see another offering from this BC brewer in Ontario stores. Served cold into a pint glass.

Appearance - slightly hazy with a rich golden color. Two and a half fingers of dense white head and a plethora of lace left behind in the glass. Tons of rising bubbles circulate towards the surface too.

Smell - fragrant aroma of floral notes, some candi sugar and yeasty. Leafy hops overtop of everything give this a balanced if not terribly distinguishable aroma.

Taste - pretty much like the nose some coriander and spice with wheat aspects followed by leafy hops. Candi sugar and yeast flavor doesn't shine through quite as much as the nose.

Mouthfeel - smooth with soft carbonation, light body and easy to drink. Not a dry finish.

Overall - a good if not great Belgian IPA, easy to enjoy and relatively drinkable for the style, however the combination isn't overwhelming. Sort of a pseudo Belgian wit / IPA crossbreed.

 980 characters

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Electric Unicorn White IPA from Phillips Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.81 out of 5 with 97 ratings