Ninja Vs. Unicorn
Pipeworks Brewing Company

Ninja Vs. UnicornNinja Vs. Unicorn
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IPA - Imperial
Ranked #120
Ranked #942
4.29 | pDev: 7.46%
Pipeworks Brewing Company
Illinois, United States
Ninja Vs. UnicornNinja Vs. Unicorn
Notes: Ninja vs. Unicorn celebrates the epic battle between two of the biggest hop-heads of lore. Brewed with over five pounds of hops per barrel, this unfiltered double IPA is sure to please the most discerning hop lover. Whether you’re rooting for the mythical horned horse or the deadly assassin of the east, we hope you’ll enjoy Ninja vs. Unicorn.
Reviews: 476 | Ratings: 2,785 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Tomahock:
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Tomahock from Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

First thing that stands out is the creamy head. And it lingers. Next is the mouthfeel... it's silky. Nose is very mild. Pours quite pale so the thick head is sort of surprising. Very balanced taste. No attempts to impress you with anything in particular. Just good, solid, balanced taste. Slight bitterness in finish. Nice. I'm usually a NE IPA guy, but this is a really nice West Coast.

Apr 16, 2021
More User Reviews:
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BeerZombies1 from Nevada

4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ninja Vs. Unicorn – Pipeworks Brewing

American double IPA , DIPA

8.5% ABV


APPEARANCE: I imagine if a ninja’s sword where to chop the head of a Unicorn, he would wipe his blade clean on his ninja pajamas. The color on his ninja costume would be reminiscent of the way this lovely beer poured. A beautiful golden amber, with sparkling highlights that really hypnotize you when you stair into it. Produced a nice big loose white head that lingering cap.

AROMA: Drinking this out in the forest has intensified the pine aromas, all around me the pine cones are falling. Getting tons of sticky pine and huge resinous piney hops coming off the pour. Fresh sliced juicy grapefruit, like the ones on “fruit ninja” game from my iPhone. Followed by some over ripe orange and tangerines. There is a wonderful maltiness that translate into toasted bread and sugar cookies. The nose on this beer is amazing. I imagine this is what a unicorn fart would smell like!

TASTE: After the ninja chopped the head off of this mythical beast, the blood spilled and filled bottle upon bottle of this beer. Usually when a beer has such an outstanding nose the taste doesn’t live up. Not in this case, the flavor layers are all right there in line with the aroma. For a beer that claims 10 ibu it inst a palate wrecker at all, Its actually very easy drinking. The piney hops come flying at you like a ninja star. Super dank that’s followed up with a big bursting citrus flavor. The sweet malts do make an appearance like a piece of toast with a grapefruit/orange marmalade. There is a some heat on this beer, which is odd with the abv coming in at 8.5%.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium body with a moderate carbonation. there is a very pleasant syrupy creaminess that makes this a really smooth drinking ipa. Lots of that resiouness pine comes through on the mouthfeel, really coating the entire mouth. Leaves the mouth with a long lasting lingering finish.

OVERALL: Not sure if Ninja Vs.Unicorn is a the name it should have. Its so balanced that it should be called Ninja Sex Unicorn. Huge fan of every aspect of this beer, including the little heat that comes out i’m assuming from the battle. Speaking of battles I think the real winner was me! I just saw that they are going to start canning this beer, when that happens I will be trading for a case at a time. Truly everything I would want and ask for out of a dipa.

RATING: 4.5/5 Zombie Heads!

May 28, 2015
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pat61 from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: murky gold permeated by streams of rapidly rising bubbles under a lacy 1" white cap with good retention

S: rich citrus aromas lift off the glass

T: Citrus leads the flavors especially Texas ruby Red Grapefruit, orange, and tangerine

F: warming but not hot or harsh

O: nicely balanced, easy to drink and easy to repeat

Sep 03, 2018
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Dragginballs76 from South Carolina

4.32/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - Pours slightly hazy orange with big white head and streaks of lacing.

Aroma - Light grass and lemon aroma, orange, grapefruit, very mild aroma.

Taste - Nice light orange, pine, citrus peel, hop flavors. Very well balanced and super easy drinking no sign of the alcohol.

Feel - Medium bodied soft easy drinking light dry finish.

Overall - Love this beer very well done solid light flavors alcohol is well hidden.

May 23, 2018
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aleigator from Germany

4.12/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slighty cloudy, orange color, with a small, soon disappearing head.

The aromas, just as pipeworks citra ninja, reveals glazed, juicy peach, heading into a ripe fruit hop direction. Big chunks of lime mingle together with tropical fruits, carried by bready malts. Citrus enriches the nose big times by adding a crisp, bitter counterpart to the the stone fruits. Finds an intriguing balance between grassy bitterness and sun ripened, honeyed peach pulp.

Tastes of bready, soft malts with peach, blood orange and lots of lime, coming to the palate at the same time as honey does. While the brew begins very malty, bitter lime adds a generous bitterness to the hops, turning more dominant than the maltiness. Honey provides a luscious sweet, ripe aspect to the fruits, accentuating the peach and tangerine impression. The beer tastes sonehow similar to hopslam, while finishing a tad dryer, with more citrussy bitterness on the tongue. Still it balances perfectly between the malty biscuits with sugared peach on top and zesty, dry but rich lemon. Although the beer finishes fairly dry, it preserves a slick, fruity sweetness, which gives even the a aftertaste some sort of enjoyable balance.

Mar 02, 2015
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Harrison8 from Missouri

4.56/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy yellow with an orange tint. Nearly three fingers of snow white head foam on top with good retention and great lacing left behind. Aroma is sugary sweet with notes of citrus, orange, baked sugar, and lightly breaded malts. Very smooth aroma that invites a sip. Flavor profile is baked sugar, and lightly breaded malts with a hearty helping of citrus, orange, and lemon zest. Very lively, and extremely easy to drink. Mouth feel is medium-thick in feel with a crisp, smooth feel. Overall, the sweet, sugary notes in this one are pretty darn impressive. It makes it extremely easy to turn a sip into a gulp. It's an approachable hoppy beer that refrains from being remotely bitter, and yet still provides the feel and flavor characteristics of beer - not juice.

Served in a 12oz snifter.

Apr 10, 2017
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IndiaPaleViking from Florida

4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Loved the balance on this one. Dank bitterness up front followed by sweet fruit and a clean hop finish. My first Pipeworks purchase and I am looking forward to my next one.

Aug 09, 2018
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KMachHops from California

4.04/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Can into tulip.
Look: Tons of fluffy head and amber.
Smell: Tropical.
Taste: Tropical with pines and eucalyptus.
Feel: More carbonation than I would like and does have some heat at the end.
Overall: Solid DIPA. It has that west coast style.

Apr 07, 2016
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PhilsPils from Texas

4.36/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Fairly clear pale-for-a-DIPA gold. OK, finally a DIPA that really hits me in the face with a nose of grapefruit, mangoes, pineapple and resiny pine. Actually tastes quite a bit like a scaled-up Lizard King but with much more piney dankness. The aroma reminds me of a time when I snuck off with some friends into a storm cellar and they (not me!) smoked some weed and that funky, earthy dankness is still in my brain. This is not an overly bitter beer, but it's not too sweet either. Very nice balance with the dry hops being the main attraction of the show. Great beer!

May 13, 2016
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MacMalt from New Jersey

4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Canned 3/28/2018. Poured into Spiegelau IPA glass. It pours a cloudy, golden-tangerine color with two full fingers of fluffy, bright white head with excellent retention and elegant, soapy lacing. The nose features big tangerine, along with lemon peel, grapefruit, and light floral hops. This is a super fruity DIPA with tangerine, orange peel, grapefruit, vanilla, honey, bready malt, and resinous pine. It finishes with moderate hoppy bitterness. It's very well-balanced. This ale is medium-bodied, with pleasant carbonation, and it's dangerously drinkablee at 8%. ABV. I find myself downing the first pour awfully quickly. Overall, this is one of most balanced and drinkable DIPA's available. It could easily become one of my go-to's.

May 07, 2018
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

i havent mad many beers from these guys, but their hoppy stuff has quite a loyal following, so this is a real treat. on tap at falling rock. its hazy golden straw colored with a real tall white head on it, fine lacing as i sip it down. smells like a whole lot of fresh citra hops, juicy and citrusy, with grapefruit and orange notes, as well as a rather straightforward grain base with just a little leftover sweetness. the flavor is predictably all about the hops, showcasing a nice mix of new world strains, but citra still seems like the only one i can positively identify. the freshness is awesome, and it tastes better than it smells, more juicy and alive, sticky and sappy, but not too oily and thick like some of the west coast ones can be, this is decidedly midwestern, fusing elements of each side. the hazy unfiltered nature is more of an east coast thing, and it helps this be a little more interesting in terms of feel. lots of body, a little residual sweetness, but a smoothness like no other, and not a whole lot of bitterness from these hops either. hints of honey and lemon in the finish too. no trace at all of its strength, i drank this way too fast and easy. i wish this was in colorado more often, really top quality ipa.

Sep 22, 2015
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Lorgeous from Minnesota

4.71/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours an extremely pleasing hazy honey color. Very light carbonation. Smells almost tropical with bright citrus and pineapple notes. Tastes of tangerine and citrus. Wonderful flavors hit the tongue on impact. Goes down effortlessly.

= A brilliant beer. The artwork on the can drew me in but the taste is what I’ll remember. Home run DIPA.

Apr 07, 2018
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MikeyMcD86 from New York

4.78/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I've had this beer beer before but did not review it so I'm happy to get my hands on it again to do this review.

Look: Beer comes in a medium golden color with a medium plus haze. Not much head but the few millimeters of foam that is there lingers with a nice creaminess.

Smell: Aroma is very much of tropical fruit; super ripe Mango and Papaya. A faint yeastiness on the back end. A little dankness as well but nothing offensive.

Taste: Flavor is nothing like the aroma. Lots of citrus; Orange and Grapefruit leads on the palate. Nice and juicy with just enough bitterness on the finish to keep the beer from tasting syrupy.

Mouthfeel: Awesome mouth-feel here. Coats the tongue nicely but doesn't leave any drying bitterness on the back end.

Overall(Style Points): Awesome beer from Chi Town! Although, it's not quite as good as the best stuff coming out of NE It has all of the characteristics that I look for in a DIPA. 97 Points!

Nov 05, 2016
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jakecattleco from California

4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Can dated 4/25/18 into a tumbler.

Light golden with just the faintest bit of haze, less than a finger of white head but it had decent retention and left limited spotted lacing.

Nose is a bit mute, lots of citrus (grapefruit, lemon zest, and orange/tangerines). Perhaps some very subtle floral undertones.

Follows the nose but packing a MUCH bigger punch. Citrus attack to the palate, so West Coast profile and so good.! Finishes with plenty of bitterness and astringency, very drying finish with both lingering awhile.

Low-medium bodied with medium carbonation, lively and tingly on the tongue, lips even tingle a bit from the astringency, slick on the finish. Feels like the enamel is being dissolved from my teeth, love it!

LOVE this beer! Reminds me very much of a lower ABV version of some of the best batches of Boneyard's Hop Venom that I've tasted. This would be a recurring regular purchase when found fresh. So good!

May 07, 2018
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monkist from Hungary

4.59/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I am a great fan of West Coast IPAs but when I meet something that stands out, I am more than glad to present it. Now this is the proof that Chicago, Illinois can produce amazing IPAs! Reminds me a bit of Evil Twin with their citrusy, piney and dry East Coast IPAs. This one has real guts as a double IPA, it has plenty of piney hops to make it blast. Semi smooth mouthfeel and balanced really well to have the malts support the greatness of the hops. Won't forget the first sip, how impressive it was. Truly stands out as a great (non-West Coast) IPA!

Apr 13, 2018
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cbutova from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- The tallboy releases a golden yellow brew that is just a bit hazy into my becher glass. The cap atop the brew is white with a foamy and frothy texture displaying fairly good retention. Wide sheets of lace wrap around the glass with drizzle between each sips stop.

S- Pungent... even after pouring I can smell this brew from several feet away. Bright and bold mix of fruity and floral hops. Mango, passionfruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach and dank notes lead way to floral, pine, herbal, crackery barley and berry hints.

T- The citrus and pine hops grow but still a good presence of tropical and stone fruit hops right there with them. Bitter pine resin, grapefruit and oranges, tangerine, dank herbs, melon, floral and pineapple hops joined by a slight sweetness, bready and pale barley hints.

MF- Creamy and puffy texture with a rather fluffy and smooth feeling on the palate. The high end carbonation accentuates the hop flavors and the eventual heavy, clean bitterness.

A tropical, citrus and floral hoppy aroma leads into a flavor profile that is somewhat shifted to the pine and citrus side of hops as the bitterness is just massive. A beer that anyone that has been in the game for a while has heard of and for good reason: it is clean, smooth as hell and delivers a blast of hops and bitterness.

Jun 02, 2017
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vikingpillager from Illinois

4.63/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

So I just tried this last weekend at Bottom Lounge in Chicago while watching After The Burial, Emmure, and Fit For A King. Maybe it was the dark metalcore rattling my ribcage, but this beer was AWESOME!! Intense yet drinkable, bold and flavorful, and the can artwork is killer. LOVE IT

Feb 27, 2017
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josanguapo from Spain

4.75/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Can. From latiendadelacerveza. In Teku glass. Playing Avernun 2. Superb west coast ipa, with all its notes perfectly assembled and a really well hidden abv, making it very crushable and utterly treacherous

May 06, 2018
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JackieTH from Minnesota

4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy golden yellow with a creamy foam head that laces up. Looks great. Smells delicious - pineapple, citrus pith, mango and unripe papaya. Taste is creamy mango and papaya, citrus pith bitterness and unripe papaya interplay with a light sweetness keeps it interesting. Finishes dry, mildly bitter. Very tasty brew. Would definitely purchase more.

Aug 10, 2018
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leantom from Indiana

4.27/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Ho-weee. This one's very herbally and lemony. I love it. Here goes:

A: Pours a relatively clear yellow-orange. Still slightly hazy, though. The head is good and the lacing in exquisite. Very good.

S: Very grassy. First scents are whiffs of grass and herbs. Can detect lemon rind and some grapefruit as well. I like it.

T: Follows the smell. Very herbally and grassy. The first fruit on the palate is definitely lemon, followed by an aftertaste of grapefruit and some mango. Good.

F: Lighter than the alcohol indicates.

O: A very nice beer. Somewhat deceptive given the light body.

Jun 09, 2018
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LeRose from Massachusetts

4.34/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a hazy honey color - like honey that is just beginning to crystallize and going just a bit cloudy.

Big citrus aroma hits immediately - orange, tangerine, and faint grapefruit. There is slightly sweet, bready malt aroma that sets the base for the other smells. Eventually as the beer warmed, some tropical fruits appeared as well, mainly a pineapple note. The aroma is intense, but not overpowering. Definitely says "drink me".

The taste is exceptionally smooth and well-rounded, with a well-tempered bitterness. Mostly orange and tangerine, but grapefruit comes to play eventually, with a very nice invasion of pine. An apple note, and a hint of tropical fruit with pineapple and maybe a bit of mango. Nice level of sweetness, and the malt is not playing second fiddle to anyone here - clearly defined. This is a very nicely crafted beer with multiple layers of flavor all working well together.

It is soft on the tongue and smooth on the finish, only moderately drying. Medium bodied, maybe a touch oily. This is a beer that is easy to drink, maye dangerously so.

Overall, the hype is justified. While I don't think it is necessarily better than other similar beers, I think it is a damned fine, well made brew that makes me wish I had picked up more. It is an everything you want and nothing you don't for the style. Worthy.

Apr 23, 2018
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Sludgeman from District of Columbia

4.26/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Dark Horse in St. Paul. Poured into a chalice.

A malty yummy nicely balanced IPA. 4.25

A - Pours clear and golden with a nice off-white head and great lacing. 4.5

S - Lots of sweet piney resin. 4.0

T - Piney bitterness with a tinch of sweetness. 4.25

MF - Medium body with a just dry finish. Smooth 4.75

Mar 24, 2018
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dave_ackbar from Hawaii

4.24/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I,have to admit I bought this for the amazing can design.
But upon drinking it the label lives up to the taste.
Look is a cloudy bright yellow with a nice .25” head that sticks to the glass after is dissapates.
Smell is a nice strong sweetness with the freshness with the hops.
Taste is the perfect bitterness of a double ipa.
Feel is terrific.
Overall I want more of this.
Hell I want to tattoo the design on my arm.

Jul 31, 2018
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TooManyGlasses from Canada (AB)

4.19/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

4 pack from Whole Foods and n Chicago. Pours out a slightly hazy golden to pale orange with 3 fingers fluffy white head. Aroma slightly underwhelming - mild citrus - bit of grassy note - faint hoppiness. Tastes is more fruity - orange, pineapple - than hoppy, though as warmed bit of pine note came out. Full mouthfeel - well balanced - mild persisting bitterness with outstanding fruity sweetness. Really good.

Repeat visit couple weeks later and my aroma comment now seems wrong - dank citrus, pungent and great!

Jul 30, 2018
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darktronica from Indiana

4.28/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Probably my favorite of Pipeworks' regular standards, with intense flavor but still maintaining a nice balance between hop flavors and malt sweetness. An excellent go-to when you don't have time to look at everything on the shelf.

Aug 25, 2018
Ninja Vs. Unicorn from Pipeworks Brewing Company
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 2785 ratings