Epitome - DDH
Carton Brewing Company

Epitome - DDHEpitome - DDH
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IPA - Black / Cascadian Dark Ale
Ranked #55
Ranked #8,995
4.3 | pDev: 6.51%
Carton Brewing Company
New Jersey, United States
Epitome - DDHEpitome - DDH
Notes: As a general rule, we at Carton Brewing strive for drinkability through balance and harmonization of flavors. But even self-imposed rules are meant to be broken. Double Dry Hyped Epitome embraces the teenage metalhead in each of us and gets discordant with a seriously hoppy, high gravity, black ale. The only notions accepted were to make it bigger, bolder, hotter & faster. A beast. It had to push past 10, literally. The black had to be “none more,” and hops American and piled on like a double bass drum kicking faster and harder. Drink Double Dry Hyped Epitome because we wrote DDH* on a beer.

*On this version of this beer, we multiplied dry hop weight and occurrence by a factor of two of the beer we’ve previously made
Reviews: 6 | Ratings: 16 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by MacMalt:
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MacMalt from New Jersey

4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Epitome is my favorite Carton beer and one of my overall favorites. I reviewed it in 2015. I just realized that this year's DDH version is considered a separate beer on BA so it deserves its own review. Canned on 11/20/2018. Poured into a Carton pint glass. It pours a rich, dark walnut color with cola hues at the bottom of the glass, and over a finger of long-lasting, creamy khaki-colored head and thick lacing. The nose features dark roasted malt, pine needles, earthy char, and floral hops. It is an almost perfect balance of malt and hops. The taste opens with fairly sweet, nutty malt with hints of bakers chocolate, burnt coffee grounds, and charcoal, followed by a blast of bitter, resinous hops and pine needles. It seems to me that this version is sweeter than the original but it nonetheless finishes decidedly bitter with 100 IBU. The feel is rich and creamy with moderate carbonation, and the 10.3% ABV is deceptive given how easy it is to drink. Overall, the DDH version of Epitome is as-good, and maybe better, than the original. This beer is released on Black Friday every year and it's one of my most anticipated releases every year.

Dec 31, 2018
More User Reviews:
Photo of TheGent
TheGent from New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Jan 12, 2019
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KingforaDay from New Jersey

3.77/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Dec 16, 2018
Photo of Vylo
Vylo from New Jersey

4.57/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Dec 08, 2018
Photo of AD17
AD17 from New Jersey

4.16/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nov 28, 2018
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Jsalz21 from New Jersey

4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nov 25, 2018
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jglenn73 from New Jersey

4.27/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A Black Ale that doesn’t taste like a porter. Nice and hoppy.

Dec 02, 2018
Photo of Harrison8
Harrison8 from Missouri

4.36/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with two fingers of khaki-camel foam. Head retention is good with curtains of lacing left behind. Aroma is pine, dank, resin, and citrus hops with dense roasty, nutty, bready malts behind. Nice blend of sticky hops with dark malts. Flavor profile is better balanced, with a more firm persona - hitting notes of pine, dank, resin and citrus hops with roasty, toasty, nutty and bready malts. Pine and evergreen hops really stick on the back. Mouth feel is smooth, with a light velvety texture. It has a medium-thick consistency. Overall, splendid black IPA, blending sticky, sweet hop notes with dark, earthy malts. Well balanced and extremely drinkable, completely hiding the alcohol, which is north of 10%.

Served in a 15.5oz tulip from a 16oz can.

Dec 31, 2018
Photo of JBowenGeorgia
JBowenGeorgia from Georgia

4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark brown/almost black with a finger of thick tan head. Left sheets of lacing.
Smells of citrus and pine primarily, also getting sweet roasty malts and a bit of coffee.
Taste is initially of roasty malt, chocolate, light coffee then a big dose of pithy citrus and resinous pine. Awesome transition!
Medium to full body, great carb level. The 10.3% ABV is nowhere to be seen.
Overall a wonderful beer!

Jan 16, 2019
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smutty33 from Connecticut

4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Jan 01, 2020
Photo of Act25
Act25 from New Jersey

4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

6th Review. I'm lucky to be local.
At the brewer, everyone was rejoicing in this deep dark iconoclastic beer.
A: What sets appearance apart are the density of the head, its long duration and its sticky lace. Black density with ruby highlights help out. Among Carton's best.
S: Plentiful nose. Mountain, high altitude wet pine, with roast chocolate, hay, pepper, olive garden notes.
T: Follows smell but BOOM! Dark chocolate and roasted malt underpin masculine, mountain, wet piney hops, with a see-saw battle between bitter and sweet with the peppery, bitter, and almost floral/perfumey hops the winner in a long finish.
Superb with food in this case from neighbor Chef David Burke, who in Covid sheltering makes too much food, Pork Casserole, Scallops Baked, Creme Brulee - all home made!

F: Another creamy dream on top of all the richness.

MIght have to return to rate this higher as it warms.

Apr 25, 2020
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JamFuel from Sweden

4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours jet black with thick, soapy head.

Smell is roasty but hoppy. Notes of coffee, leather, citrus and some pine.

Taste is big and bold, with a nice juxtaposition between stout and IPA. Roasty notes snuggle up to hoppy ones, the chocolate notes make out with the piney ones, and somehow it comes together to create a warming, yet refreshing beer. The gut punch of bitterness even flows well. Very nice beer.

Mouthfeel is medium to full, well carbonated.

Overall, a really cool beer, and one of the best examples of a black IPA.

Apr 27, 2019
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Claude-Irishman from New Jersey

3.99/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Looks inky black, with a nice creamy/foamy mocha colored head. Smell is mostly a char scent with remnants of leather and smoke. Taste is a bit of cocoa,coffee,anise,stone fruit,very hoppy. A big roast flavor. Feels quite light bodied for a big ABV beer. Finishes juicy. This DDH American Imperial Black Ale is not for the faint of heart. This beer is all about roasted,toasty,char flavor. This one is Double dry hopped. I think I like the original better. Still very good. This beer was retired and re-released today on Black Friday.

Nov 29, 2019
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hopley from Massachusetts

4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dec 10, 2019
Photo of Jps715
Jps715 from New Jersey

4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Apr 07, 2019
Photo of djrn2
djrn2 from New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nov 22, 2018
Epitome - DDH from Carton Brewing Company
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 16 ratings