Hoplar Imperial IPA | Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

54 Reviews
Hoplar Imperial IPAHoplar Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Hardywood Hoplar follows the wood-aging tradition of the earliest India Pale Ales, which were matured on oak. Rather than oak, we’ve selected the delicate wood of a fallen Virginia Tulip Poplar, which was TreeCycled by CitiWood and toasted for use in this hearty IPA. While this Poplar can no longer rustle in the wind or give shade, it is able to offer balance to the bright citrus and pine character from heaps of Cascade, Columbus and Summit hops with subtle notes of caramelized vanilla. And the tree was hoppy.

In the mid-1800s, when the early IPAs were being shipped in wooden barrels from the breweries of Burton-on-Trent to thirsty British colonists in India, our Tulip Poplar was a mere sapling on the outskirts of Richmond, Virginia. On September 18, 2003, this towering Poplar prevailed to the fierce Hurricane Isabel and fell on Bell Creek Road. Richmond-based CitiWood Urban Forest Products helped us transform the wood from this fallen Poplar into custom designed flavor- and aroma-enhancing infusion sticks. Post fermentation, Hoplar is dry-hopped with a generous helping of whole-flower Cascade hops and conditioned on the toasted Poplar.

Hardywood Hoplar is mahogany in color with a hearty, tan head and offers an aroma of grapefruit brûlée and pine needles, as well as delicate vanilla toffee and a hint of campfire. Medium- to full-bodied with assertive (100 IBUs) yet delightful hop bitterness, Hoplar is balanced with ample caramel malt backbone. A bit of earthy tannin from the Poplar harmonizes with the resinous hoppy character, which dissipates into a lingering finish.

100 IBU

Added by siege06nd on 04-22-2012

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Reviews: 54 | Ratings: 393
Photo of DmanGTR
4.92/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to BJ for this awesome bottle. Shared with Jacqui last night after a nice dinner. Review from notes.

Poured a beautiful dark maple/copper with honey blonde highlights in the kitchen light. A well retained white head kept lacing the glass as the liquid disappeared. Huge hop notes of citrus, pine resins, and tropical fruit, especially pineapple. It almost reminded me of Hop Stoopid. Nice bold caramel and grainy crystal malt body to hold up the intense hop bomb. A bittersweet forefront that carried juicy pineapple and citrusy hops throughout each sip. A very earthy and piny finish. Nicely carbonated, but needed a little swirling to decrease the carbonation. If I could drink this beer as my staple IPA, I would.

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Photo of RocPorterFanatic
4.82/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a opaque reddish copper with a solid 2 fingers of off white creamy head.

S - Very pungent citrusy, floral nose. This stuff could peel paint.

T - Nice malty backbone on this beer. The intense bitterness is mellowed out pleasantly and the wood aging helps to compliment the entire package.

M - A little hot yet, the alcohol is very much in the game. Agressive carbonation keeps everything in check, leaving your mouth clean sip after sip.

O - Delicious beer, near perfection. Thanks to Beejay for sharing this one with me.

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Photo of obywan59
4.71/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours crystal clear and coppery in color with a 2 finger off white head that leaves substantial attractive lacing.

Smell of ripe grapefruit, pine, and maybe a little biscuit.

Taste of pine, light caramel, and a light woodiness. Very bitter, but sweet malt counters well.

Medium full in body. Excellent retention on the palate. Moderately slick. Moderately crisp. Warming alcohol.

A luxurious brew. The flavor matures as it warms. Full in both taste and aroma and well balanced. Decadent.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
4.62/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: deep burnt orange but with a strong bright clarity to it. Two to three fingers of a tannish head that fades slowly and leaves a lacing on the entire side of the glass. Moderate clarity.

Smell: very strong smell. A hoppy mix of citrus, tropical fruits, pine and some resin. Silky sweet character as well. Small notes of vanilla to toffee with some boozy oak qualities.

Taste: opens with lots of hops. Hints of citrus, mango, papaya, strong pine, and hops resin. Pine taste comes off as a mixture of bitter and sweet pine sap. Background is full of spice, some burnt character, earth, vanilla, wood. Moderate to strong alcohol that plays very well with the beer.

Mouthfeel: wonderfully silky and smooth. Leaves some bitterness and alcohol warmth behind.

Overall: a great and unique iipa. Great variety in the character, from all aspects hops malts and barrel.

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Photo of challenja
4.62/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: Copper gild orange golden his. Honey comb bee pollen. Light sticky milk cloud head.
S: sweet pine sap grapefruit candied lemon heads.
T: powerful full bodied multi layered mouth banger. Full turtle hop bah. Mush mouth fallout throat tickle.
M:medium to full mouth feel. Powerful resin sap. Power up punch mouth feel.
O: a superb complex DPIA. Hardywood strikes again. So far the brew company on the East Coast.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.58/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Spiegelau IPA glass. Suggested to pour slowly.

Woah, this sucker is big. Even on a controlled slow pour it's just a huge large head. Light tan and slightly yellow it is as big as a fist. Super thick retention this thing will not go away or quit, a big thick lip hangs over the glass but never cascades down. Body color is beautiful. Crystal clear and this gorgeous deep red amber, with nice rising carbonation that isnt too excessive. A real impressive IPA here in the looks department, big winner.

Real interesting nose, very enjoyable. Big dank earth and hits of pine cone and needles. Some real nice forest green spruce like senses, spicy, even kind of floral a bit. Love this aroma and walking through crushed earth in a forest sense. Inviting.

Real interesting palate. Very subdued bitterness that lingers, with a nice caramel sweetness. Rose petal sweetness and a very long and slowly large and growing hop herbality. Green and black tea aromatics on the finish, slowly builds to a grapefruit large freshness. Incredibly juiced and thick perfect mouthfeel, lush, full, oily but not slick coating with just enough sugared warmth, and subdued carbonation. Lots of leafed tea herbal notes, and mixed citrus, and minimal mid palate bitterness

This is real impressive beer from these guys, as if Great Return was fantastic as it is this one is a winner.

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Photo of RVAIPA
4.58/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: Enjoyed from a goblet at Mekong in Richmond, Virginia

Appearance: Cloudy amber would be the best way to describe it. The head started off at about half and inch but quickly fell. Beautiful lacing throughout the experience.

Smell: The poplar pops out at you like you were walking through a poplar forest. The hops are noticeable as well.

Taste: I know I am biased being a Richmonder but this would have to be one of the best IPA's I have ever had. The poplar comes to you at first and leads right to the hops. You dont get that bitter copper flavor you get with many other IPA's that lingers too long.

Mouthfeel: Like I said earlier, my favorite characteristic about this beer is that it doesnt leave a copper-like after taste in your mouth. The smoothness created by the poplar/hop combo is fantastic

Overall: If you are in the Richmond area, you have got to try this unique IPA. It is truly a religious experience. Hardywood keep it up.

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Photo of Mattyb79
4.54/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 750ml cork and caged bottle into a Hardywood Park tulip. This is my first review ever, but this beer made me want to write one up.

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a minimal 1/2 finger head. Almost looks like real maple syrup in the glass. I can smell the beer as soon as the cork pops.

Smell: I get a little piney hops first, followed by some sweet fruit smells similar to grapefruit, mango, and a touch of orange. A touch of vanilla smell comes through as well.

Taste: Wow! I have had quite a few brews from Hardywood, but this one blows me away! I get a lot of sweet citrusy fruits right off the bat, followed by some woody vanilla characters, and ending with a mix of piney hop bitterness and vanilla. This beer is amazing in the way you can pick up on so many different flavors. The only downside that kept this from being a 5 is a slight bite from the charred poplar that hits right at the finish. It doesn't really detract from the beer, just noticeable.

Mouthfeel: Perfect for the style IMHO. Just enough carbonation to tickle the tongue, but syrupy enough to coat your entire tongue with the amazing blend of flavors.

Overall: Again, I have never took the time to review a beer, but this made me want to do it. I am quite impressed with this and would buy it all day everyday if it was a bit more affordable. $9.99 for a bomber is acceptable, since it is well worth the price, but for me this will be a special occasion beer. Too bad it's not year round!

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Photo of brentk56
4.53/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A magnificent pour, with a massive head forming over the hazy copper liquid; impressive retention; in fact the retention is so grand that you know that lacing will be terrific when it comes to that

Smell: The poplar wood (how Virginian that is) makes a statement and combines with toffee malt and vanilla tones; the entire aroma is buttressed by tropical fruit aromatics, which hints at citrus, mango and pineapple

Taste: A touch malty, up front, with toffee and vanilla tones but by mid-palate, the citrus and tropical fruit flavors take over assertively; after the swallow, the poplar comes through and lingers through the aftertaste, where all of the flavor elements can still be detected; there is a very nice floral aspect, too, that I didn't notice at first

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: Although I typically prefer my hoppy beers to be just that, I don't mind the malt presence in this one; another outstanding beer from Hardywood

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Photo of MCain04
4.49/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Extra from a trade, wish I remembered your name fellow BA. 750ml bottle poured into Spiegelau tulip. 2013 release.

Beautiful pour, a ruby amber, mostly clear body, with a generous frothy light-beige head with great retention and great lacing.

Smells of piney hops, some citrus notes, lemon and grapefruit, grassy,strong presence of cascade hops. Not much wood in the aroma.

Taste is very unique. Juicy cascade hops make for a bright citrusy and pine needle hop flavor right off the bat, not overly bitter. The malt background balances well with some sweetness. The poplar wood is this taste I am not familiar with. Earthy would be the best word, with a little vanilla. It adds a really nice complexity to the IPA without overwhelming it.

Medium bodied, a touch overcarbonated, not the driest of finishes, smooth on the tongue, lingering poplar earthy taste.

Overall, I agree with the Bros on this one - this is a winner. The subtlety of the poplar treatment really works to accentuate and balance rather than overwhelm this IPA. Try this if you can, well worth it.

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Photo of Jason
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

750ml brown corked and caged bottle, vintage date on the label.

The head retention alone won me over ... to start. Seriously, an amazing head and perhaps the best looking one this year! Hazed copper hue is inviting. Aromas of wood, spice, fresh pine sap, melon rind, mango, papaya, parsley, yeast, yellow cake. Deep smoothness, semi-creamy medium body. Big hoppiness, very bitter, heavy wood, earthy, spice, vanilla, peppery, resin, slightly pungent, hint of caramel, dried grass, yeast, tropical fruit, warming alcohol, long bitter and woody finish.

Someone pinch me ... mind-blowing.

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Photo of Emersonio
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pour: Bomber bottle into a tulip glass. Appearance: Attractive amber in color. Started with a large white head which reduced to more of a minimal offering yet still present after settling. Lacing present on the sides of the glass, but not much. Aroma: Juicy and dank hoppy aroma. A bit of spicy pepper is detected. Woody notes are also present on the deep sniff. Slight alcohol aroma is also detected as well. Taste: Dank and juicy hops are immediate on the sip. the taste mellows out a bit to reveal the Poplar wood roast. Smooth and velvety despite a higher IBU (100). The juicy hop and wood qualities compliment each other nicely. Aftertaste: Woody and earthy elements remain on the back end. Lots of linger after a few exhales. The deep back end reveals a noticeable bitter quality with definite onion like notes. Notes: Big fan of the nose and taste. Love the interplay of the wood and hops. Very unique. I wish it could have finished a little more clean. The back end could be better. Had this at the brewery the previous week and the freshness and taste was a total knockout. Result/Rating: Very Good/ 4.42

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Photo of TechTriumph
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes on 04/04/12:
Growler from the brewery; Poured in a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A - A bit more than a half inch of off-white frothy head that sticks around for a minute or two; Deep, dark caramel/copper in color with a very cloudy appearance; Awesome webs/veils of sticky lacing left behind

S - Not quite the potent aroma as you'd expect from a DIPA, but what's there is very pleasant with notes of spicy pine, grapefruit and orange citrus, cracked black pepper, and toasty, biscuity, and caramel character; Nice presence of poplar/wood notes with very subtle vanilla

T - Very flavorful and robust here; Nice combination of sharp spicy pine, grapefruit citrus, vanilla, toasty malts, black pepper, earthy poplar wood, and subtle sweet caramel that immediately come forward; Good shot of bitterness lasts from start to finish, though it does weaken towards the end; Finish is fairly peppery with hints of pine and poplar that linger for awhile - pleasant and delicious

M - Below moderate, but fairly prickly carbonation; A bit above medium bodied; Very smooth going down with a bit of alcohol warmth; Nice, sticky, dry finish that leaves a thin oily coating within the mouth

O - It seems like Hardywood just can't miss with their creations. I like this DIPA quite a bit, but after giving it some time to warm, it becomes even better and showcases some pretty harmonious flavors. The combination of flavors is unique for sure, but the end result displays great earthy/wood character and is one of the better DIPA's I've had the opportunity to try. This has gotten me even more excited to see what future IPA's Hardywood has in store.

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Photo of MehNahMehNah
4.36/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is in the same vein as DFH Santo Palo with the unique wood aging. Super hoppy beers work well in this sort of brew!

Had this in a tulip glass because of the IBUs, I wanted get a good idea of the bouquet of the hops.

L: Looks like a red ale, deep sunset red hue. Robust head that has good staying power, and persistent carbonation that put on a perpetual show. Head fades with some modest lacing. Super attractive beer, IPA or not.

S: A nose of sweetness like spun sugar. Not as much hop aroma as I expected for a high IBU beer, it smelled like the last day of a state carnival; bare dirt, stale tobacco, animal musk, weathered wood in the sun. Not unpleasant, but like a faint memory. As the beer warms, grapefruit notes appear, but so does the onion/garlic traits of the summit hops. This beer lacks olfactory impact considering its specs.

T: Initially when served cold (about 45 degrees) you get sweetness first, but it is brief. High ABV beers+High IBUs are tricky and once you get over the shock and awe, the sweetness of the malt rides through. Taking slow, thoughtful sips lets the nuance of the wood come through. Novel and pleasant. I'm not a superfan of summit hops and I think after a while I was picking up a green wood flavor from those; I would have liked to have had more of an aromatic hop to minimize some of the funky qualities of the summit. This beer would suffer from too complex of a hop schedule, and I salute the brewery for not getting carried away. Definately unique and somewhat complex, but not going to appeal to everyone.

F: The carbonation level is really enjoyable and helps deliver the complex flavors across the palate. The initial sensation is a modest body, slightly heavy for a IPA, then it fades to a lingering consistency kept afloat by the alcohol and lingering hops, the wood's presence in the background. My mouth watered, yet my lips were sticky. I suspect the big malt bill needed to hit the ABV resulted in a lot of leftover sugars.

O: I'm no master brewer, but I bet if Hardywood had gone easier on the Summit hops and maybe had used some amarillo to distract from the onion/garlic traits this would be spectacularly complex as a hop bomb. Like the Santo Palo, this is a clever spin on a wood aged beer. The lingering sticky sweetness makes me wonder if it could have aged longer or tweaked some other aspect of brewing - whether it was altering the grain bill, choice of yeasts or temperatures I can't venture a guess. It still would go down well paired with some semi-soft cheeses and nuts or a skillet-seared steak with rosemary grilled potatoes and zucchini. It's a little niche-y but more subtle than the Dogfish Head Santo Palo.

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Photo of MacQ32
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - pours an orangish mahogany with a tall fluffy dense caramel/tan fantastic lacing and retention and fantastic lacing.

S - resinous pine, grapefruits, bitter, some kind of unfamiliar bready/woody spiced aroma, vanilla and caramel malts

T - as it smells, piney and grapefruit and earthy bitterness originally with a nice heavy malt backbone, peppery and warming alcohol, slight tart earthy tannin and what I assume to be poplar follow and the bitterness lingers through the finish.

M - medium plus with good carbonation but still quite creamy/smooth

O - very well balanced big flavored dipa

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Photo of wvsabbath
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - 22oz caged and corked bottle.

Appearance - Burnt orange/tan with a 1 inch thick, foamy head and tons of lacing.

Smell - Piney grapefruit hops, lemon, orange, some wood and oak notes, a little vanilla and added sugars. Not overly strong aroma.

Taste - First sip starts off with huge piney hops and a strong malt backbone. Woody oaked flavor Is certainly present, adds a nice dimension to this 100 ibu dipa. More flavors come out like added sugars, spices, and a herbal note. Nice balance with some minor alcohol warmth at the finish.

Mouthfeel - Huge piney hops really coat and bitter the tongue, leaving a hoppy resin. Malts, oaked wood and sugars hit the palate. Nice herbal flavors come in near the finish. Aftertaste is woody, malty, hoppy, bitter and sweet.

Overall - I admit im a huge oaked, wood flavor fan, so im a bit partial to the style, but this is really good. Tons of flavors, balanced, but nothing is over the top or too much of. My first hardywood beer, and im very impressed, cant wait to try more, and cant wait to get more of this one. Awesome beer.

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Photo of athomasPSU
4.31/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pour is amazing. A perfect ruby amber color that's not as cloudy as I expected. About a finger or so of beige head that leaves a sticky lacing that looks great.

Smell has lots of hops and grapefruit with some earthy wood. It's hard to figure out what it is. Also some malts that seem to come out. Its also got some toasted vanilla coming through.

Taste is very unique. Bright powerful citrus and sticky pine that's balanced by the toasted flavors from the malts and wood. Definitely notice the wood. It's got a great bitterness to it. This beer is so complex. Sweet and bitter with a great toasted malt backbone

Not a lot of carbonation. Very nice mouth feel. Smooth drinking.

Overall this is amazing. Very complex but so delicious. An imperial IPA at it's finest. The poplar makes this beer. It's a beer I would love to get more of. Thanks for the trade upton7418
I would recommend trying if you get a chance.

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Photo of Big_V
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Aggressive pour with 3 finger head. Aroma is sweet bread, pine, resin. Major hops up front then resin. This is a hop bomb. The poplar wood flavor adds major flavor. This was a great DIPA.

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Photo of Crazyale
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a pint glass. This is an IPA that was aged in a barrel made of Virginia poplar.

A: Pours a slightly cloudy dark amber, with orange highlights on the edges of the glass. Big frothy head that sticks around a leaves a sticky web of lacing on the glass.

S: Citrusy hops hit the nose first, but the aroma is more complex, with some pine needles, wood chips, and honey.

T: I'm picking up the poplar wood taste first, which is quite forward tasting. I'm not getting the big vanilla taste you get from oak; instead I'm getting more of a woody sapiness. Then the hops escape from the wood with a nice bitter citrusy kick. Due to the poplar, it actually takes several seconds for the hops to fully develop on the tongue, making this beer something of a "creeper" tastewise. I could probably spend all night talking about this beer; it's very complex and unique, and keeps producing new flavors.

M: This is a medium bodied beer with low carbonation. Due to the creeping effect of the hops, the aftertaste lingers on the mouth forever, changing its character as the seconds go by.

Overall, this is a unique and delicious beer from Hardywood. I was leery about an IPA conditioned in wood barrels, but this sappy poplar is the perfect complement for an IPA. My only complaint is that it is difficult to drink this big a beer in the 750ml format.

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Photo of 2beerdogs
4.24/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very interesting!
Amber hue, rich head stays around. Quite pretty to behold. The nose starts out with hay, pine, and well... poplar. A nice hint of wood. The taste is clean hoppy, earthy grass with a lite woody coating on the tongue. Reminds me a bit of a tamer Pliney with poplar notes. Beautiful lacing following each sip. Makes you want to crawl into your glass and tongue scrape each ring of lacey sediment left behind...could use my archaeology background to work through the sedimentary levels. HAHA
Finish has a slightly oily stickiness yet the mouthfeel changes to a watery, not a bad thing, swallow.

Overall, I liked this one a lot. I'd love to get another one to share. It's very unique.

Thanks to ASUBeer, NCBeerFan, beerness, and Wino47 for this beauty!!

Just had this one again...7-12-15 Thanks to @montman

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Photo of AMCimpi
4.23/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: A darker IPA, Amber. White fluffy head that stays. S: Pine, dank hops, herbal, grassy, a touch of wood. T: Some wood, a little melon, some pine. M: This beer is creamy, silky smooth, some bitter on the backend but the silky smooth feel just invites you in for more. O: I'm becoming a fan of these wood aged IPAs. It added a smooth mouthfeel that is almost barleywine like. An overall nice beer, I'm really enjoying it

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bomber into a snifter, the beer is a deep, vibrant, caramel copper coloring, with a foamy, clingy, off-white head. Gorgeous. Aromas of rich vanilla, subtle pine and resinous hops characteristics, rich smoky caramel, subtle orange and grapefruit, and woody notes. Flavors are rich and perfectly balanced forward, blending vanilla, wood, and caramel with pine tassel, wet grass, and dank vegetation. Extremely balanced, and as smooth as it is robust. The body is full and smooth, with a bitter resinous aftertaste lined with a tart grapefruit edge. The finish is layered smooth, with a dry undertone, with lingering resinous and citrus notes. Great beer, a truly great beer.

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Photo of delta490
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep Amber, just so slightly hazy. The head is dark cream, foamy, and has big volume and great retention. The aroma is multifaceted, varying from caramel malts, to floral and citrus hops. The taste is much the same. No one quality overwhelms any other and compliment each other. The poplar is subtle and at times it's hard to tell its there. But other times it's a nice addition. The body is remarkably light but not watery and has a light carbonation tingle.

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Photo of citizencane
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Yes, it's heavy on the poplar. If you're looking for something totally balanced, this probably is not it. That said, the poplar adds a fascinating note of wood that is sweet but not like birch. Unusual and definitely drinkable and high quality. Maybe not one of the top beers in existence, but very good and distinctive.

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Photo of qchic
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Amber with a rosy glow. Head lingers a while. Pine and caramel in the nose. I Had no prior knowledge of what poplar smells like, bit I am getting a sweet and spicy wood aroma that tamps the hop pungency. Lots of flavors from hops and poplar. I'd recommend sipping and savoring the battle between caramel and pine with fruit and plenty of bitterness. The wood brings an earthiness that rounds off the edges. Big body to this IIPA, and I love the oily mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little too fine. Still, very enjoyable to enjoy through the evening.

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Hoplar Imperial IPA from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
4.06 out of 5 based on 393 ratings.
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