Ale To The Chief | Avery Brewing Company

Ale To The ChiefAle To The Chief
BA SCORE
4.02/5
617 Ratings
Ale To The ChiefAle To The Chief
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
averybrewing.com

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.75%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally brewed to celebrate Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009, we elected to give Ale to the Chief a second term to commemorate the 2012 election!​ ​Not an “Imperial” pale ale, this is a democracy. It’s Presidential! Take the all-American pale ale, a bipartisan blend of malt and hops, increase both to Avery Brewing standards, and then, of c​​ourse, dry hop the result with that most quintessential of American hops, Cascades, and you get this…a brew worthy of the Oval Office!

Added by GilGarp on 07-22-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#3,442
Reviews:
404
Ratings:
617
pDev:
9.7%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
24
Gots:
38
Trade:
1
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 617 |  Reviews: 404
Photo of ColForbinBC
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a tulip pint

A mountainous, thick, off-white head topped off at about three fingers. Excellent staying power with spider web lacing all the way down. Sitting comfortably under the cap is a light amber/copper body with very few bubbles.

Aroma is of big, bad hops. Ruby red grapefruit juice, pineapple, oranges, and a steady stale bread malt background. Overall, very sweet. The malts do their best to cut through the sweetness, but the hops prevail.

The sweetness in the taste is almost too much. It definitely pushes the limits of the tastebuds. The malts are sweeter in the palate than nose and only add to issue. Flavors mimic the smell---fresh, ripe tropical fruits. A slight alcohol warming builds as time goes on.

Thick, viscous and creamy.Very playful on the palate for such a full-bodied beer.

The sweetness wears on you after a bit, but never became an issue. The alcohol warming definitely heated up as time went on. A sipper for sure.

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Photo of dedrinker
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Caramel/ amber color with a creamy off-white head. Aromas of herbal and citrusy hops with a kinda fruity sweet malty quality too. Not an "imperial" or even "presidential" intensity though, but good. Flavor is really great with the fore-mentioned aromas showing up on the palette and additional fruit flavors I can't quite place - marmalade? The body is medium-to-full and very creamy - great texture on the tongue. The finish is hoppy fruit jelly. That's a good idea - make a hopped jam for toast, biscuits and scones! Alcohol is totally hidden. Overall, this beer is not a hop-bomb yet the hop presence is fully integrated and persistent. The fruity malty qualities blend seamlessly with the hops for a very well rounded and balanced effect. I would like to see this beer as a 6% alcohol beer but with the same balance and body. Put it in a six pack and make it cheaper. I paid $7.99 for a 22oz. of this and I don't feel it was very well spent.

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Photo of nrbw23
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a pretty clear golden amber color with a nice head. Head has great retention and leaves a lot of lacing.

S- All hops here citrus and pine!

T- Sweet citrus upfront hops. Has nice hop bitterness on the end. Just a hint of malty sweetness keeps this from being one-dimensional.

M- Medium body and good carbonation. Almost feels like its unflitered.

D- Easy to drink and wonderful flavour.

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Photo of blakesell
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22oz foil wrapped bottle into a Belgian style goblet.

Appearance- Beer pours a clear golden amber with a substantial one and a half finger head of foam that clings and leaves lacing all across the sides of the glass.

Smell- This is clearly a hop bomb with loads of cascades, simcoe, Amarillo, and cat pissy hops, pines galore, there smells to be some malt in there, but I sure as hell can't pick it out. I can catch a little of the Avery yeast, which must be geared for IPA's as this one smells damn near perfect.

Taste- Crisp fresh hops nearly as much as a harvest ale, they say on the bottle that it's dry hopped, but it tastes as if it was wet hopped as well. Very fresh hop flavor with much citrus, pine, and hop oils all throughout the flavor. Malts do provide a nice balance on this beer.

Mouthfeel- Lightly sticky, bitter, lightly astringent, highly carbonated, and full bodied.

Drinkability- Very nice for the repeat drinking, I will likely buy another bottle for swilling at a future date and I'll try to find it on tap as well.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bomber bottle into my imperial pint glass. Appears a mildly cloudy rich golden yellow color with about two fingers of fluffy off-white head. A moderate amount of lacing sticks to the inside of the glass with each sip. Smells of citrus and floral hops followed by sweet malt. This is unusual for a DIPA - the caramel malt is the first thing I taste followed by a pleasantly bitter rush of hops. Citrus notes such as lemon and grapefruit as well as pine are the dominant flavors with a nice caramel malt base. Finishes dry with a slight alcohol burn on the tongue and throat. Medium in both body and carbonation. This is a very well done DIPA and worth seeking out if you can.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Ale to the Chief poured a clear amber color with a ridiculous 3 finger foam head that retains pretty well. It leaves some nice sudsy lacing on the side of the glass.

The aroma was wonderful and hoppy. The label calls the libation an Imperial pale ale. It has a resinous hop smell that comes to the nose like it is fresh from the lupulin gland. It has a good biscuit malt backing with a sharp bitterness on the finish. It remains spicy on the tip of the tongue for quite a while. It is a very unique beer that should be tried by all lovers of the IPA's and regular pale ale's.

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear, deep amber to slightly copper. Coarse two inch apricot colored head that settled into a quarter inch and held. Ample lacing all the way down..

S: Mmm...plenty of hop aroma. Distinct citrus bite.

T: Quich flash of sweet malt soon overtaken by grapefruit and and distinct piney taste. Actually reminds me a bit of IPA's. Nice clean bitter finish.

M: Medium to full bodied. Bitters bring the beer to a nice balance.

D: Great balance make this an easy drinking ale. Clean bitter finish makes me want another drink. Good thing I bought two bombers.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up this bottle for $6.99 in Columbus. The beer is copper colored and very clear with a thick spitty textured white foam that dries into lace on the glass. The smell is really hoppy, but with a hint of sweet malts in the background. The taste is pine needles and grapefruit but not too astringent, with a very sweet malty flavor in the distant aftertaste. This is a very good imperial pale ale (description on the bottle), but just possibly it steps into DIPA territory.

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Photo of homebrewhawk
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bomber served in a Duvel tulip. Plenty of carbonation, opened with a pretty good pop. Poured a reddish gold with a thick white head. Fresh citrus/pine hop aroma. Solid malt backbone. Smooth mouthfeel. Restrained hop bitterness. Some citrus in the middle. Dry hop finish but not mouth puckering. Very drinkable at 8.75% abv. Nicely balanced beer, not a hop bomb.

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Photo of Wheels2532
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of hozersr
4.16/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Casey3236
4.16/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of oberon
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have held this bottle awhile,I was hoping to open this bottle on election night....but things didnt go the way I had hoped,but enough bout that.Poured into a 22oz nonic a dull bronze with a big blooming slight off white head that left broken chumks of lace behind as it settled very slowly.Big pine resin and grapefruit rind in the nose along with some caramel biscuit.Obviously a hop dominate brew on the palate,grapefruit and leafy with a big dose of caramel sweetness,a lingering leafy/green note finishes.Its not over the top but its damn good,I bet it would have been great more fresh,damn voters!

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Photo of BeanBone
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on Inauguration Day

Appearance: A rich burnt-orange, crystal clear body with a firm, off-white head on top. Lacing is good.

Aroma: As you'd expect from a Double IPA, as soon as the bottle is opened, hops flood the air. They're of the classic Cascade profile: bright citrus and pine. There's a caramel base under all the hops, but I'm not getting the amount of booze I was expecting.

Taste: Good hops up front, followed by lots of sweet caramel malt. The hops could be a bit more assertive for my tastes, but everything meshes well here. There's a long hoppy finish, with a bit of booze around the edges.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with fine carbonation and a bit of warming alcohol. Dries in the finish.

Drinkability: Double IPAs are not know for their drinkability, but I would say this is slightly more drinkable than your average example. The booze is hidden excellently, I'd never guess this was over eight percent.

Verdict: Not just a gimmick, Avery have crafted a great beer for this occasion. This is a perfect accompaniment to today's events. I only wish that I was able to source more than the one bottle I managed to find. Ale to the chief!

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Photo of UA8
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a bright and clear amber orange with a tall and puffy soft white head.

S- Flows forth dominated by citrus scents of tangerines and orange rind slight hints of mango and pineapple sweetness in the background.

T- Starts in with a tropical fruit sweetness, mid palate blends with tangerines and finishes nice and bitter with clementine peel.

M- Much fuller than you expect for such a transparent beer. Nice amount of carbonation that seems to really come to life in the mouth.

D- This is a really solid IIPA. It could have touch more complexity to the palate and nose but doesn't miss the mark heavily in any category. I would recommend trying this while its available.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a relatively bright, but slightly hazed golden orange. Head is big, with crackling bubbling of off-white foam. Lace is crazy and intricate. Body looks surprsiginly light, but if it's a "pale ale" as they describe, it fits. Looks pretty big and impressive overall, while still remaining true to its stylistic roots.

Nose is pleasantly sweet, with that really classic fresh American hops character. Lots of hops giving citrus oil buoyancy, but it mingles with sweet butterscotch and caramel. Sudsy aromas come off it too. Bit of pepper berry, sharp and sweet but spicy as well. Really nice aromas, and well integrated.

Pine on the palate, with a good citrus bite. Sweetness comes through, hints of peach and vanilla. The only sign of the ABV, is a touch of sharp phenols on the back, but only very lightly so - so well covered by all the really pleasant characters otherwise. Lovely drop of beer.

Surprisingly easy to drink for its alcohol, and bursting with flavour, but never overdone on any of the potentially offensive characters. Really well restrained in places, but let loose in others. Cracking beer.

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Photo of Morbo
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy golden-amber with about an inch of foamy head that doesn't stick around for long, though some lovely lacing makes up for it.

The nose is sweet grapefruit juice and pine, with a hint of caramel maltiness.

There is some caramel and toasted bread upfront that is quickly washed away by oily grapefruit juice and a moderately bitter herbal tea flavor.

Medium body and carbonation round things out nicely. The finish is dry and bitter with just a bit of alcohol warmth - less than would be expected from a beer pushing 9%.

Surprisingly well rounded, the bitterness isn't as overpowering as it is in many IIPA's though the bite of grapefruit does linger at the end. At $7 a bomber I would definitely drink this again, but I prefer the Maharaja.

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Photo of joe1510
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber
$6.99
Binny's Orland

Ale to the Chief, Avery's newest creation, fills my imperial pint glass a tarnished copper similar to rust. There is a good deal of orange highlights when backlit through the semi hazy body. Streams of carbonation start off slow but quickly speed up on their way to the surface. A slow pour brought about a dense three fingered head that slowly fell to a thick cap leaving intricate lacing on its way. Each drink I take ends up leaving behind a section of sheet lacing and the intricate spider webbed lacing the rest of the way. This is a good looking IIPA.

This beer has a good helping of hops for sure. I like the direction they went with this, there is a huge amount of tropical fruit and enough pine sap to level the playing field. As delicious as the hops smell the malt is no slouch either and there is enough present to keep the hops from running wild. The malt has just enough sugar and comes across as cake frosting with caramel poking up here and there. I like where the smell of this is taking me. Hopefully the flavor can live up to the aroma.

The flavor is actually quite a bit different than the aroma led on. There's not near as much tropical fruitiness. Caramel is the first thing that coats the tongue and it lays down a solid base for the dominant hoppiness. The hopping at first brings along a moderate pine needle and sappy bitterness but quickly becomes a buzzsaw of hoppiness mid palate and ends up putting a hurtin' on the tongue. The buzzsaw does mellow on the swallow and allows what tropical fruitiness is there to come forward. A tropical fruit mixture of tangerine, orange, and pineapple combine with the pine needles on the finish. While the flavor doesn't live up to the aroma it's still very good.

This beer has a great mouthfeel for the high abv. The body is moderate but has a nice silkiness with a healthy carbonation that never keeps this beer moving. The bitterness grows quickly and is like a buzzsaw on the tongue. After half a pint my entire tongue is numb and down for the count. The body gets nice and light on the back of the tongue through the swallow.

For a beer with such high abv and such a big bitterness it goes down incredibly easy. The alcohol is barely noticeable which could end up being a dangerous thing with how easy this beer flows. I have to slow myself down because I'm reaching for the glass often.

Ale to the Chief is probably my favorite beer from Avery and I'm hoping it's a year round offering. I'm impressed with Avery's use of hops in this beer. I wouldn't hesitate picking this one up again when in need of a hop fix. For the style of beer the alcohol is moderate enough to finish a bomber, by yourself, without a problem.

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

From the 22 oz bottle in a snifter. This fine ale pours a lightly cloudy brown tinged orange-ish
amber with a fantastic head of off white foam that settle to a thick sudsy ring, pooling
big bubbled center, and showcases nice sudsy lacing. Nose of sticky bittering hops,
grassy hop notes, sticky caramel malts, light booze, and light tropical fruit notes.
Flavors exceed the nose with sticky hops laden with pineapple, grassy hop notes,
heavy caramel, robust herbal notes from the hops, and a tea like note with hints of
bitter orange...there is a touch of comedy to that considering the original brew date....
just saying. Excellent mouth feel; medium full body, medium light and zippy carbonation
helps to cut through the sweetness, and a bright hoppy finish dashed with caramel malts
and a lingering tea note.

Overall, a nice brew that is rich and excessive on the bitter end without being overly
bitter.

A solid strong ale.

Cheers

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Photo of largadeer
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark yet almost perfectly clear amber. A one finger creamy white head rises from a vigorous pour, retaining incredibly well and lasting until my last sip.

Smell: Candied grapefruit, oranges and a touch of honey. The balance of hops and malt is excellent, both providing depth but hops eventually rising to the forefront.

Taste & mouthfeel: Malty sweetness is the first thing to hit the palate, reminding me of orange marmalade on lightly toasted bread. Hops follow, full of citrus and pine, grapefruit and orange in particular - for a cascade-oriented beer, this tastes like no other cascade beer I've had. Impressive hop flavor, though the finish is a bit rough and astringent; less bittering hops would be to this beer's advantage. Nonetheless, I found myself really enjoying this, much moreso than Avery's other Double IPA, Maharaja.

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Photo of GJ40
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 22oz bottle purchased from Sam's in Durham, NC.

A - Golden with a slight haze and a moderate white head. Minimal lacing.

S - Yeasty, malty and a bit fruity.

T - Very balanced contributions of malt, alcohol and hops. Very even and smooth with none of them dominating. No off flavors at all.

M - Low to moderate carbonation with a nice, silky consistency.

D - A solid, entertaining beer. Not particularly aggressive in any way but very good.

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

Photo of dfillius
4.19/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed in a pint glass on Inauguration eve 2009. This is the second bottle I had, as I couldn't resist trying the first a couple months ago. I was impressed with the first bottle, let's see about this one. This bottle may have frozen during our move across to the Midwest this winter.
A: Gentle pour yields 1/2 finger of off-white head. A small layer remains with a nice ring. Cloudy reddish brown liquid. A little too cloudy :-( It is a DIPA though so maybe I should not be so critical...
S: Delightfully hoppy nose but strong malt as well. Fairly balanced. Main hop smell is of pine resin.
T: Bitter front with fruit behind. Pine, molasses, grapefruit, a bit of oxidation flavor (from freezing?). Reminds me of Yulesmith - which is a very good thing.
M: Pleasing bitterness, well carbonated.
D: Delicious Presidential Pale Ale/PPA. I wish this was a year round one. It is one of the best beers I had in 2008.

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Photo of zeff80
4.19/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, orange/amber color with an off-white, foamy, bubbly, long lasting, three-finger head. It left sticky traces of lace.

S - It smelled of pine, citrus (grapefruit) and floral notes.

T - I've never tasted grapefruit in a beer quite like this. Simply put the strongest grapefruit flavor I've ever tasted in a beer. It also had a biscuity/caramel flavor with a subtle grassy bite.

M - It was sharp, crisp and smooth. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a very good beer. Again, the most grapefruit taste I've ever had in an IPA.

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Photo of mnapier
4.19/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Service Temperature, 50 degrees farenheit. Service Glassware, 12 ounce tulip (with stem)

Appearance, is dark amber with a sap like density. As I pour this out of the bottle I see an initial strong, tapioca head, that dissipates slowly (more than a minute for complete evaporation), leaving only an antique, table cloth like lace.
The nose on this is interesting, with a dance of playful sweet citrus and notes of berries. Slight floral quality alongside some minor earthiness.
Sipping initially I detect a nice smooth caramel malt, that gives way to some minor citrus hoppiness. A very mellow overall taste.
Mouthfeel is medium.

Man I would love to have a ham sandwich right now.

Cheers

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Ale To The Chief from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 617 ratings
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