Simcoe | Pipeworks Brewing Company

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Brewed by:
Pipeworks Brewing Company
Illinois, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Having spent equal time studying at the Citrus School of combat and the Piney School of combat, Pipeworks Simcoe has garnered immense skills when it comes to fighting the horrible, evil, Bland Clan. Prepare your senses for the 1-2 punch of this Simcoe hopped Imperial IPA.

Added by MasterSki on 04-22-2013

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Reviews: 46 | Ratings: 525
Photo of Huhzubendah
3.25/5  rDev -24.1%

Bottle shared by RussianDragon. Many thanks.

The beer is orange / russet and fairly hazy with a half inch of off-white head. Aromas of citrus, alcohol, bready malts, pine. These massively hopped, high alcohol beers just get on my nerves. Aggressive alcohol heat / sharpness in the finish. Lacking subtlety and grace. An in your face onslaught of hops and malt. Not entirely bad, but not my preference for the style. There are many DIPAs in the 8-10% abv range that reign far superior. This concludes my rant.

Put a freaking date on the bottle. Seriously.

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Photo of kkleu357
3.46/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Deep amber color with a big white fluffy head. Earthy hoppy aroma. Very earthy slight pine taste. Slightly sweet. Heavy mouthfeel. Lots of alcohol taste. It’s ok.

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Photo of ChicagoMikeS
3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

The color is a slightly hazy orange with a large fairly thick head. There's moderate retention and very sticky lacing.

The malts are almost more prominent than the hops in the nose. There's also a hint of pine.

The flavor is very big but not very complex. It's big hops with quite a bit of malt as well. There's a lack of balance and subtlety, but it's not as bitter as I would expect from a hop bomb. It's certainly not bad, but it wouldn't be my first choice for a DIPA.

The mouthfeel has a very slight creaminess to it, but the alcohol is noticeable in every sip. It's not exactly boozy, but there is a bit of a burn and the 9.5 ABV does begin to wear on you.

Overall I'd say that it's worth trying, especially if you enjoy the simcoe profile or are just looking for a hop overload, but I don't think this is one that I'll be revisiting.

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Photo of kevanb
3.74/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

650ml bottle, batch #194, poured into a Pipeworks snifter.

The beer pours a bold copper color, hues of orange and gold, clear complexion with a slight haze with a billowy, off white head that rises about 2 fingers high that has moderate retention and leaves only a few spots of lace behind. The aroma is of heavy pine, very sappy, resinous and oily, light grapefruit with some tropical sweetness that leads right into the sticky, sweet malt and a fairly heavy dose of booze. Lots of pine on the tongue, very oily and resinous, further earthy undertones are cut by some tangy grapefruit and citrus and very sweet, rich malt and heavy alcohol. The mouthfeel is okay, juicy and sticky, coats the mouth well, the finish is a bit creamy and leaves almost a burning alcohol sensation in the mouth as it goes down.

Verdict: A decent DIPA from Pipeworks, but once again, is dominated by alcohol. This beer does showcase Simcoe nicely, but doesn't have the same complexity or delicate nature that a beer like Row 2, Hill 56 does. I've yet to be overly impressed with too many of the Pipeworks IPAs and this just strikes me as another run of the mill IPA, I'll stick to stouts and porters from Pipeworks, where I think they really shine as brewers.

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Photo of Jaycase
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Dark copper. small off white head

s: Aroma is surprisingly (and disappointingly) muted. What I do get is grapefruit, melon, orange and pineapple.

t: Grapefruit, caramel malts, very slight piney bitterness. Hops do seem wet and fresh.

m: Juicy, slightly creamy. Seems under carbonated - a bit flat to me.

o: A bit disappointing. Aroma was a letdown. Wish it had a tad more bitterness as well. It's still good on the whole and I'd recommend trying it but I won't seek this one out again. Pipeworks are pumping out DIPAs like no tomorrow so I'm sure there will be something I like better coming along.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a tulip glass)
Batch 194
A- This beer pours a deep dried orange peel with a strong carbonation supporting a bubble beige creamy head.

S- The overripe pineapple hops leads to a green herbal hops in the finish.

T- The nice unripe herbal fruity hops lead to some citrus pith that finishes with a slightly sweet caramel malt hint. There is a gentle pungent green hop flavor that lingers.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a nice crisp finish and no real alcohol heat.

O- This beer really shows off the Simcoe character. The nice unripe fruit flavors with some herbal woody depth and a mellow bitterness makes this pretty easy to drink for such a big beer.

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Photo of Powderhornphil
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excited to try my first Pipeworks beer.

Appears a hazy, murky orange. Moderate head. Leaves Little lacing.

Aroma is tropical and piney. Plenty of bready malts.

Tastes sweet with almost guava and pine notes over a bready malt. Finishes with bittetsweet grapefruit.

Full mouthfeel with carbonation on the low side.

Decent offering here but would not put too much energy into seeking out again. However would certainly seek others in the ninja series.

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Photo of ArrogantB
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle $9.49. Excited for this one because I loved the Mosaic version of this beer and I know Mosaic has a Simcoe heritage. Golden orange, good head. Earthy, piney, hoppy aroma that is distinctly Simcoe. Pine and berries in the flavor, not too bitter, not boozy at all (surprising). Slightly astringent finish. Nice beer but I prefer the Mosaic.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.02/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from West Lakeview Liquors. Served in a plastic cup.

A - Looks nearly identical to Cascade Ninja, but with a bit better head volume.

S - Slight cattiness, with some guava, passion fruit, and a similar malt backbone of dough, sugar, and perhaps a hint of caramel. Hops seem less intense than the Cascade Ninja, even though this is a few weeks fresher.

T - The tate is quite heavy on melon and cantaloupe, with fairly low zesty or pithy notes. The malt character translates pretty closely from the aroma, with doughy bread and sugar dominating. Surprisingly hefty hop bitterness here.

M - Medium-full body, lower in carbonation, with a dry finish. Some lingering malt stickiness and hop resins. Again, a mild alcohol warmth that, while acceptable for 9.5%, makes this seem boozier than its predecessors.

D - I think this is my least favorite Ninja variant; the aroma doesn't pop quite like the other iterations, and I was expecting something like Haymarket's Degan. It's a solid brew, but I'd skip it in favor of Pipeworks' other beers.

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Photo of Treebs
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle served in a Pipeworks snifter. Batch #124

A: Pours a dark amber color with a yellowish head forming on the pour. It recedes to a thin cap and thick collar. Sticky sheets for lace are left down the glass.

S: All simcoe, all the time. Piney and earthy with a little grapefruit backing. Some mild scallion as well. Sweet caramel malt balances it out.

T: Same as the nose. Sweet grapefruit with some earthy hops. Mild scallion on the very backend with some sweet bready malts.

M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation level. Earthy hops on the finish.

O: Full blown simcoe. Hits on all the levels and flavors you'd want from a beer like this. Tasty for sure.

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Photo of BeerLover99
4.14/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: dirty orange jam, finger khaki head
excellent lacing

S: powerful grapefruit and fresh pine, earthy wood

T: lemon peel, pine, wood, mild chalky, long bitter finish

M: med body, very oily, mild sticky mouth

O: Quite good, love this brewery.
So glad to re-explore various hops and dive
into the intense detail each offer. Would
buy again to be sure.


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Photo of Vonerichs
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Clear gold-orange color with a copious amount of white head that leaves behind spotty lacing.

The smell has orange peel, pine, and lots of cat piss.

The taste is unmistakably Simcoe. Grapefruit, pine, Brie cheese. The light bready malt is submissive to the bitter hops.

Mouthfeel is dry and clean. Fresh tasting.

It's an awesome DIPA and, so far, only takes a backseat to citra ninja in their lineup, in my opinion.

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Photo of shand
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This Ninja is one dangerous fellow. At 9.5% ABV, this guy drinks like he's much closer to 6%. The aroma is pretty standard for an IPA, citrus hops and caramel malts. The taste comes hard with sweet citrus and a solid piney bitterness that melds very well with the sweet caramel malts. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied, moderately carbonated and sticky, it's just what I want to feel from a DIPA. The drinkability is amazing, Simcoe Ninja goes down far easier than it should. Overall, a DIPA that excels in the mouthfeel department. Very enjoyable, and greater than the sum of its parts may seem.

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Photo of KFBR392
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Hits all the marks for an Imperial IPA without being anything outstanding. Low carbonation, average lacing on the edges of the glass. Deep burnt orange color which is absolutely appetizing.

Smell: An interesting contrast of violent active hops and floral sweetness. Floral hops hit on the front but then a very strong alcohol bitter hop body hits. Spices and some earthy tones can be felt on the undertones of the aroma. Overall, not as complex as I would have expected though.

Taste: Some really interesting things going on here. The front is a much more subdued hop mellowness then I expected. Wet citrus and fresh hops blast through in the body. Ultra piney kicks in on the aftertaste and refuses to leave the palette. The complex waves take on fruity flavors then seeming very bitter pine. What I would definitely call a palette crusher.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly smooth through the body then the hops come in and crash the party. Crazy complexity.

Overall: A really complex and interesting IIPA. The fact that I am getting this brew so fresh makes it so much better. Pipeworks is doing so great things and I look forward to this brewery going and expanding in the future.

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4.21/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A smooth pour easily achieves two fingers of yellow tan head. Head is mountainess and rocky as it slowly fades. Spots of lace are left behind. Body is nicely dark murky amber haze. Really a fuzzy mahogany hue.

Nose is sappy and full of woody hops. Spicy characters are very present throughout this very fragrant brew. A bit of rawness lingers on the nose as well.

I am immediately taken by how initially silky the hop profile is on this beer with first sip. Clean yet full on the palate is a very neat trick. Easy drinking but nicely aggressive hop feel throughout the flavor profile. Hops are raw and remind me of arugula a bit. Crisp and raw with subtle but consistent bitterness especially on the back half.

This is an overall solid and incredibly drinkable IPA. Mouthfeel is very enjoyable.

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Photo of sleuthdog
4.21/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Batch #124 poured into Founders BC glass

Pour: Copper orange color that is hazy. Minimal maybe half finger white head that was gone almost in the blink of an eye. Settles to a ring of medium sized bubbles.

Smell: Wow! Love the nose on these Pipeworks beers. Big citrus like standing in an orange grove. Some grapefruit, some pine but citrus is where this one is at. Also some tropical fruits like pineapple and mango. Some sweet bready malts and caramel thrown in for good measure. Damn this is nice smelling.

Taste: This gave me a bit of a surprise. It is actually much less tropical and citrus than the nose let on. I get much more pine here than anything else. Much more bitter and dank than I expected. There is some of the tropical notes just way subdued. The caramel and malts show up too but the sweetness is held at bay.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and medium amount of carbonation. A smooth and creamy beer and a touch sticky.

Overall: This offering caught me off guard a bit as I was expecting another sweet tropical, citrus DIPA but instead got one that shows off more pine and bitterness than Pipeworks other offerings in this style. Now I like this beer tremendously, I guess I personally just enjoy the more juicy tropical ones more.

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Photo of MDDMD
4.21/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-orange amber color with a decent off-white head and good lacing

S-malt, citrus, pine, tropical fruit, herbal

T-caramel malt, grapefruit, orange, pine, herbal, moderate bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth

O-a good Simcoe DIPA, a little on the sweet side, but overall flavor quite enjoyable

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Simcoe hops seem to get a bad rap. The common connotations is that the hop variety imparts aromas and flavors that are garlic-like, grassy with skunk and cannabis, or even of cat pee. But all-Simcoe "single-hopped" beers that I have don't seem to have the brevity that is preceded by their reputation.

Citra Simcoe's body is rich with a dark honey color. Its unadulterated haze further adds to its rich hue. But on top, a voluminous off-white froth builds into a rich lather. Its heady structure easily lasts the session while grazing the glass with concentric lacing.

Full hop aromas are highly citrusy and earthy. The scent of vibrant grapefruit might carry the character of being over-ripened. Those citrus notes are juicy and seems to be mixed with an herbal blend that consists of chive, basil, fresh-cut grass and cilantro. Its Italian herbal scent seems to be drenched in thin honey and caramel for a mostly balanced nose that tilts confidently toward the hops.

As the nose leaves sweeter impressions, the taste picks upon the honey and caramel as those sweetnesses wrap around the front of the tongue in anticipation of its hop dominance to come. The earthen fruitiness takes hold with an acidic and racy taste of grapefruit and oranges with a tinge of apple and kiwi could easily be yeast-derived fruitiness but weaves into the hop flavors seamlessly. As the beer extends into finish, the more herbal, grassy, and earthy bitterness takes hold, and does include a the light dankness of cannabis and is mildly catty- but much lesser so than is expected. But those final flavors are not alone- a spicy alcohol note seems of acetone and aids the closure in taste.

Full-ish in body, the same heft that pushes the ale toward ten-percent also allows the accumulation of sweetness that's not only tasted, but is also felt. This extra creaminess and weight pushes the hop and alcohol dryness until very deep into its taste. But the beer does finish semi-dry, spicy, warm and with a mild hop-derived astringency.

Simcoe Ninja is a solid IPA that doesn't miss a beat even if its hop blend is simple and directed to only one variety. This usually leaves beers lacking depth, complexity and interest; but no such problem here as the beer's "bigness" and alcohols aid the distinctive Simcoe hop with complexities of their own.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.26/5  rDev -0.5%

Twenty-two ounce bottle shared by Sasha - thanks. Batch 467/468.

A: Pours a hazy orange with a half-inch thick white head which fades to a thin cap and rim leaving spots of lace.

N: Juicy grapefruit, tangerine, orange, pineapple, fruity and floral.

T: Dank and herbal with some pine and solid malt backing.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Resiny and sticky finish.

O: Strong Imp IPA and very hoppy. Well done.

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Photo of Mikeypnh
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear, dark golden/amber. Small head with some nice looking bubbles floating on the top after it fades. The smell is very nice. Mostly a grassy pine, but with subtle hints of citrus, as well. Smells so fresh. The taste follows the nose, with a slight bitterness at the end. Malt comes through nicely, too, with a bready sort of after taste along with the bitterness. Lemon is the dominating citrus flavor, and it becomes more forward as it warms. Medium mouthfeel and creamy. This is a pretty bitter ipa, more on the side of lemon bitter as opposed to grapefruit rind. Another solid offering from pipeworks, although it may not be my favorite "ninja."

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Photo of Florida9
4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Darker, dirty shade of orange. Slightly hazy. Forms a smallish off-white colored head that collapses to next to nothing, just a slight ring around the edge. Some moderate lacing.

S: Aroma is very nice. Sweet orange, orange blossom, and clementine. A slight ambrosia note, just a little tropical fruit, and a bit of alcoholic pungency comes through as green onion. Luckily the sweet, fruity aromas dominate.

T: Taste is moderately sweet. Again there is more orange, but the taste is earthier than the aroma would suggest. Citrus, grapefruit, pine. Some caramel malt. Finish is surprisingly quick. A touch of alcohol on the finish.

M: On the heavier side of medium. Medium carbonation. Mild bitterness. A bit of alcoholic heat.

O: Another very nice DIPA from the Pipeworks crew and another very good beer in the Ninja series. That said, I would have appreciated a bit more bitterness on this one.

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Photo of GJ40
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%

An impressive fluffy white head that lasts forever. Piney and earthy hop aroma and flavor dominate. Very good but I'm not so sure simcoe is a hop I enjoy alone.

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Photo of Ri0
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 267/268 poured 22oz bottle into snifter.

A - Rusty orange in color with a dirty white 2 finger head. Slowly fades and leaves behind nice webbed lacing on the glass.

S - A load of hops, pine, grapefruit and pineapple dominate. Sweet caramel and hints of honey scents balance it out.

T - Big hit of hops off the bat. Pine and grapefruit with some sweet pineapple. Sweetnes comes in with waves of caramel, honey, and ripe pineapple. Finish is all bitter with juniper and pine.

M - This beer has a medium mouthfeel, good carbonation, with a nice crisp finish and minimal alcohol.

O - This is sensational and showcases Simcoe all the way! It helps me realize that some of my other IIPAs must use this hop. I'm looking at you CW Illumination.

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Photo of MCain04
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle, <1 wk fresh, from Beer Temple, poured into a Spiegelau tulip glass at 40 degrees.

Appearance is a deep golden orange clear body with large fluffy white head with great retention and lacing.

Smells of piney resinous hops, grapefruit and lemon juice, a little bit of sweet orange juice and sweet malts.

Body is heavy on the grapefruit and pine with some lemon rind as well, a lingering citrus bitterness but not an overly bitter beer, the beer is quite drinkable for 9.5% and while the beer is not overly hoppy the balance is good with the malt backbone.

Mouthfeel is moderate carbonation, maybe a tad under-carbonated, medium bodied, dry finish, not too sticky or cloying.

Overall a great DIPA and probably second only to Citra in the Ninja series. Get it if you can - definitely worth it!

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Photo of FBarber
4.32/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours an orange tinged color. Slightly hazy due to the beer being unfiltered. Thick pillowy white head dissipates slowly leaving a nice layer of foam on the top of the beer with some sticky lacing.

Smell is incredibly fragrant. Aromas of citrus, pine, foliage. Tons of simcoe aroma.

Taste is pretty straightforward. Strong simcoe hop presence. Nice balance between the fruitiness and pine. Light cracker malt backbone. Touch of sweetness but not overly so. Slight bitterness on the finish.

Feel is quite lovely. Not to heavy for a DIPA. Medium carbonation. Spot on for a DIPA.

Overall a really nice DIPA. Simcoe really works well with the base DIPA for a lovely beer.

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Simcoe from Pipeworks Brewing Company
4.28 out of 5 based on 525 ratings.
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