Ninja Vs. Unicorn | Pipeworks Brewing Company

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Ninja Vs. UnicornNinja Vs. Unicorn

Brewed by:
Pipeworks Brewing Company
Illinois, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by MasterSki on 01-23-2012

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Reviews: 336 | Ratings: 2,197
Photo of Beric
4.3/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Serving: Can into pint
Served: 14 July 2016

Appearance: Pours a somewhat hazy orange color crowned with a soft white head. Didn't leave a ton of lacing and the head dissipated quickly as well. Even at 8%, I would have expected it to pour a bit better than it did.

Smell: Tons of hops, of course, with an underlying caramel sweetness. Hops verge from resinous to citric. Clean nose.

Taste: Sweet malts interplay nicely with the somewhat sharper resinous/piney hops. Rounded out by citric fruit notes, a pinch of fresh black pepper, and some tropical fruit.

Mouthfeel: High body with medium carbonation. Works well.

Overall: A very good beer and definitely recommended.

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Photo of frozyn
4.12/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L -- Pours a clear golden color with a thick, frothy white head on a fairly aggressive pour.

S -- Very good fruity aroma, not with a very specific note to me. I quite like that. There's also a good note of pine/resin, but not overly powerful. A little later mango starts to hold prominence, but only slightly.

T -- Sweet pineapple, cotton candy, resin and a nice malty sweetness come through.

F -- Medium feel, even carbonation.

O -- There's nothing that stands out about this, which is perhaps why a shorter review than normal, but I feel like it all comes together to create something better than the individual parts.

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Photo of HopBomb515
4.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Golden color with some haze and a small head but great lacing. Fruity hop soaked assertive aroma. Notes of dank, citrus peel, grapefruit pulp, and light honey sweetness. Medium feel, no abv, crisp, and slightly dry. Classic DIPA flavors done amazingly. Nice citrus punch with restrained bitterness and big hoppy flavor. This one was fantastic.

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Photo of DraftyBrew
4.56/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got a can from my local liquor stores here in San Diego. Artwork on the can caught my eye. Poured from a can into a chilled glass. First thing I noticed was the high carbonation and bright gold color. The smell is very aromatic and fruity. The taste is very interesting: it is full of bitter hop and fruit flavors, but incredibly smooth with almost no bite that you would expect from a double IPA. Mouth feel is very nice and the high bubble content is very refreshing. Over all one of the best IPAs, if not beers, I've ever had.

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Photo of BeerGuy8315
4.49/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 16oz can into a snifter

A: Pours a slightly hazy, golden-orange color with a one-inch, paper white, foamy head that lingers for a while. Small amounts of thin white lacing.

S: Aromas consist mostly of fruity tropical notes with some citrus as well, mango, peach, pineapple, and tangerine. Slightly sweet and biscuity malt undertones. Very mild dank hop notes.

T: Taste aligns with the aromas fairly well. Mostly tropical fruit and citrus notes accompanied by nice, mild, piney hoppy flavors. Mild sweet and cracker malt notes come through as well.

F: Light-medium bodied, smooth, with good carbonation throughout.

O: Overall, I'd say this is a great DIPA. Love the fruitiness of this one, and I'm usually not a fan of the more fruity DIPA's but they blended it well with the hop bitterness. Wish this one was available in the Twin Cities, I would definitely make it a regular.

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Photo of thebeers
4.07/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the lightest-looking DIPAs I've seen. It's a vibrant pale yellow-orange color with two fingers of frothy white head that lasts quite a while before leaving strong lacing. The somewhat muted aroma has a mix of pineapple and other tropical fruit, a little spiciness and white bread. Tasty, again with muted tropical fruits up front, pine resin and pepperiness mid-palate, and a nice hop bitterness, lingering residual sweetness and kiss of alcohol on the backend. Medium bodied, with a scraping carbonation that creates a sharpness in the mouthfeel. A solid brew.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Really nice hazy yellow color with white head. Aroma pops with huge tropical hops. Dank hops, chives, peach and tangerines. Taste follows with dank/herbal hops, fruits in the middle and resiny bitter finish and aftertaste. Medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation. Overall this is a really good DIPA, one that can compete with a lot of the more hyped ones.

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Photo of MisSigsFan
4.44/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy golden orange-yellow with a thin white head. Smells is dank and tropical. Lots of pineapple and mango with some citrus. Taste is even more pronounced with dank and tropical hops. Slight onion taste and citrus on the back end. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with medium carbonation. Bitterness is subdued and lets the hop aroma shine. Overall, a fantastic DIPA.

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Photo of JohnnieB71
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very tasty juice bomb. The tropical fruit smell and tastes are very nice with very little bitterness. Overall a very approachable IIPA that won't turn a non IPA lover away. I prefer mine a bit more piney and resinous but I would certainly drink this again.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Outrageous 16oz. can into a Surly teku.

Aromas of citrus, pineapple, grass fields and spring days. Sweet, floral and aromatic. Great! Notes of pine, pineapple, citrus fruit and papaya upfront. A soft bitterness settles in, in the middle evoking some grassiness as well more pine and bark. Finishes grapefruit and hop bitterness. Delicious! Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation that entices the palate. Prickly and lively going down with a dry finish that keeps me going back for more.

This is certainly up there with some of the better IIPAs that I've had. Certainly worth trying and I'm glad I'm able to get this on shelves now.

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.27/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a hazy golden orange with a creamy white head. The head leaves tons of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is orange peel, grapefruit & piney hops.

T - The taste follows the aroma. Grapefruit, orange peel, sweet malts with piney resinous hops shining in the finish. The finish has a lingering bitterness.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation. Smooth creamy mouthfeel.

O - A really nice DIPA. Good blend of citrus and resinous hops. Crushable for 8%.

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Photo of PiffJames
4.57/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer is going to become huge.

Pipeworks in general keeps expanding but this beer will be known. This beer has quickly infiltrated the Chicagoland area and everyone is in love with it. You will find Lizard King and Ninja vs Unicorn everywhere around here - in bars on tap or in cans, in grocery stores, in local and giant liquor stores.

This is a great beer. Full bodied and full of flavor. Beautiful to look at and pleasant to smell. This is everything you want in a double IPA.

I've had it a couple days fresh in cans and on tap.

Best double IPA I've ever had, hands down.

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Photo of PhilsPils
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
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!

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Photo of DJChaseTheBase
4.24/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had from a can poured into a 16oz pint @ Jerry's Chicago. Right off the nose you can tell you have an excellent fruity scent leading into a full out citrus flavor in your mouth. After you sit back and allow those hoppy citrus notes to blast your palate you will get a mild bitter aftertaste. I really enjoy this DIPA. As DIPA are my favorite beers. Will pick up again as always.

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Photo of Franziskaner
4.09/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Gold in color with a light haziness. There's a solid inch of densely packed bright white. Heavy lacing. I smell very floral and earthy floral hops and light malt. I taste plenty of floral, earthy mosaic hops and light, crackery malt. The mouth is very dry and surprisingly light, crisp, and refreshing.

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Photo of BWED
4.28/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

16 oz. can poured into a Spiegelau wheat glass.

A- Semi-hazed golden in color. Head is just off white and foamy. Great retention and lacing.

S- Tropical fruit, grapefruit, passionfruit and mango/pine.

T- Piney, citrus pith, with a light toasty backbone.

M- Medium full body. Relatively smooth for a hop bomb. Dull linger of pine and pith.

O- I'm impressed with this brewery. First Lizard King, now this. Really good brews. This is a great hop bomb, that isn't too provocative. Fairly smooth as well.

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Photo of raynmoon
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Awesome beer. Has great piney, earthy, resinous characterists throughout with a tropical note that helps keep it balanced. The Abv is nowhere to be found.

The only problem I have with this beer is that it is too light in the body. I have noticed this with other pipeworks IPAs; they taste like hop water. This almost reaches that territory. It could use a bump in the malt bill to make this world class, because it almost tastes like a session beer at this point.

Still very tasty though.

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Photo of Dirtyhands
4.31/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Absolutely fantastic. Aroma of dank simcoe type hops, grassy and dank all at the same time. Taste follows up with the similar simcoe/Amarillo type flavors. Clearly dry hopped heavily with a slightly opaque appearance. This beer is outstanding.

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Photo of HopHunter19
4.56/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - nice clear golden color with white head that sticks and leaves nice lacing, not looking unfiltered which I heard was the case but I don't mind!
S - big dank mango, papaya, orange zest, cantaloupe, melon,grapefruit, ganja, garlic/onion, def some mosaic profile here
T- nice bitter grapefruit and orange peel with dank ganja flavors in there. Background is mango, papaya, passionfruit, melon, cantelope, garlic/onion.
M - medium mothfeel, bitter, alcohol covered, aftertaste is bitter citrus peel
O - damn fine ipa. Very tasty. Kind of a more readily available but less intense version of TG Sosus.

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Photo of Bloodbuzz99
4.27/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Smells so good you don't have to drink. Super citrus, grapefruit notes - bitter, stays on the pallet but not overwhelming. Can't stop smelling this beer. Very little malt sweetness on the backend- just a super fresh hoppy double ipa

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Photo of metter98
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is somewhat hazy yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high bright white head that gradually died down, leaving some specks of lacing on the surface, a thin collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of cantaloupe are present in the nose along with some notes of citrusy and piney hops. The pine becomes a bit stronger as the beer warms up.
T: The taste follows the smell and starts off with flavors of melons—cantaloupe seems to stand out in particular along with some notes of citrusy hops and hints of piney hops in the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied and quite crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of visible carbonation.
O: This beer has an interesting mix of aromas and flavors, particularly with the cantaloupe melon. It's rather drinkable for an Imperial IPA and hides any traces of alcohol from the taste.

Serving type: can

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Photo of Sabtos
4.11/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bright golden yellow, with a large foamy white head. At first, it's crystal clear, which is totally unexpected when taking the smell and taste into account, although it does seem to get hazier as it sits.

This is beautifully aromatic, with pineapple and sticky dankness wafting off powerfully. Some spicy pine, green peppercorn, and a touch of orange candy come shortly after. The dankness only increases over time, which is a big plus. I find that sticky, fresh herbal green to be a totally mesmerizing aroma, particularly when it omits that pungent skunk element.

All of this very wonderfully transitions to the taste, with piney peach and very tropical flavors coming forward.

While refreshing, there is a little kick of aspirin-like bitterness to prevent you from gulping it down too quickly. It is well carbonated and a little spicy as well.

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Photo of spoony
3.89/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a 16 oz can (dated March 29, 2016) to a tulip.

A-A normal pour produces a tall white head. Retention is OK and the foam leaves chunks of lace on the glass as I drink. It is nearly clear, just a chill haze and some lazy carbonation to break things up. The color is lighter than many IPAs (or IIPAs).

S-The aroma is a nice, citrusy-tropical blend that suggests orange, pineapple, cantaloupe, and lemon drop. The malts are very light with just a hint of toast and some sweetness that reminds me honey suckle. There is a bit of medicinal alcohol heat in there too.

T-The taste is not quite as tropical as the smell. I get a more bitter orange pith flavor with the tropical, floral notes mainly lurking in the background. Despite some significant sweetness and candy sugar notes, the beer has a bit of graininess in the malt. Kinda odd.

M-The body is light to medium in heft with a little sweet, syrupy stickiness on the finish. Carbonation is pretty mild. Easy to drink.

O-I don't have a ton of experience with Pipeworks beers, but this one seems to fit the mold of others I have tried. It packs a powerful hop punch with some decent tropical flavors, but the sweetness seems to hold it back a bit and the taste was strangely bitter compared to the aroma. Above-average, but not a world beater.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
3.47/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pounder into an oversized tulip. 3/15/16 canned date.

Looking good on the appearance. Hazy golden liquid although not anywhere near the NE haze. Tons of suds and foam. Lace aplenty. Good persistence to the head.

Aroma is what it seems you're going to get out of any IPA these days, a tropical fruit blend. But there's a floral, melon-y aroma that I always love in brews and a light sweet malt presence. We're still looking damn good.

The flavor and feel don't quite deliver here. Flavor is more about that grapefruit life but in a tired sort of way. It becomes fainter the more I drink and becomes a bit of a lightly malty and sweet flavored-beer with a bitter and zesty finish. There's way more feel than flavor.

A bit of a dud for me and as it's only a month old, I guess I should drink this a fresh as possible to get the deliciousness others have experienced.

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Photo of gustavmahler-09
4.44/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark golden. One finger of persistent foamy head. Smells of citrus, grapefruit. Tastes of citrus also, grapefruit and oranges, with plenty of bitterness. Taste lingers well. Feels creamy and rich. Overall excellent.

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Ninja Vs. Unicorn from Pipeworks Brewing Company
4.25 out of 5 based on 2,197 ratings.
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