Ale To The Chief | Avery Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding
384 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Ale To The ChiefAle To The Chief
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.75%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed occasionally during election years.

Added by GilGarp on 07-22-2008

BEER STATS
Reviews:
384
Ratings:
537
Avg:
4.04
pDev:
11.88%
 
 
Wants:
25
Gots:
20
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 384 | Ratings: 537
Photo of alkemy
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

(From notes)Hazy orange/copper with a big whipped off white head. Hops is there, but in an earthy pine and orange scent. The caramel malts dominate. Taste is much of the same. This may or may not be the brewer's intention. After all, this beer was brewed some 10 months ago so I'm sure the hop character is not as it was at that time. Some odd flavors here and there. Hints of honey and maybe grilled pineapple. Liked the slick feel, but just couldn't get totally into this.

 474 characters

Photo of bbeane
4.14/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured into a snifter... Starts with a nice off white head that that eventually disappears leaving behind an impressive web of lacing. Beer is a murky copper color with fine sediment and light activity

S- Some floral hops, but more sweet malt and citrus... not overpo

T- Malty sweetness, caramel, subtle citrus with a pronounced bitter hop finish

M- Medium bodied with light carbonation... leaves a nice bitter taste lingering in your mouth

D- Little expensive, but you get what you pay for... another quality Double/Imperial Ipa from Avery

CHEERS!!

 557 characters

Photo of corby112
3.63/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy dark amber color with a thin off-white foam head that quickly settles into a thin lasting ring that streaks the glass with spots of soapy lacing.

Crisp floral hop aroma with subtle hints of citrus and earthy pine as well as a strong caramel malt presence.

Nicely balanced and very quaffable considering he high ABV. The malt backbone is a bit too strong for my liking but it provides nice balance to the dry earthy hops. Earthy pine and sweet citrus notes. Slightly dry finish.

 494 characters

Photo of portia99
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle received as an extra in a trade with bryanbrick. Thanks Bryan! Poured into a Portsmouth goblet.

A - Bottle was a gusher...but once I finished cleaning up the counter and the floor...Pours a cloudy, yeasty copper orange color with a thick, whipped cream like head that settles to a high rimmed collar around the glass with islands of bubbles on the surface.

S - Rich and malty aromas, lots of caramel, some bread, sugar sweetness, a bit of dish detergent (definitely not from the glass either), and a little bit of grapefruit on the nose.

T - Malt centered but with a nice bitterness to it. Not sharply bitter, but round and full. A bit of grapefruit and a touch of pine. Sweet sugar and toffee flavors, some bready, yeasty flavors. Alcohol has a presence in the flavor too, but not at all hot.

M - Pretty full bodied and malty. Carbonation is on the high side and pretty creamy in feel - just a little bit of tingle around the mouth. Lingering malt sweetness in the mouth and quite chewy too.

D - This is a good DIPA, but not a great one. To be fair, I think this is probably a bit past its prime, but not really old either. Malt is a bigger focus than I prefer, but there is still enough hops to enjoy it. Alcohol is on the high side at 8.75%, and it's presence is made known too. Good beer - I think one is enough for me though.

 1,347 characters

Photo of KTCamm
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber poured into a pint glass.

Pours a burnt copper amber copper with lots of fizzy white foam. Ridicoulously long lasting, with lacing even before the foam recedes to the level of the beer. Very sticky.

Sweet malty smell with some orange. Not getting the hop rush I expected.

Taste opens bitter, but holds with anise, licorice, and orange flavors throughout. Finish is bitter, mildly peppery. Lingering hop aftertaste. Good solid carbonation.

At the beginning I thought this was going to be too much hop for me, but the malty mixture held up very well and ended up being more drinkable than I expected. Good taste as well.

 635 characters

Photo of natelocc787
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Darker IPA. Nice 3 finger head with lasting retention. Nose is both caramel malt and orange peel with light spruce. Big time orange in the taste as well with caramelized pineapple and tree sap. Sticky on the sides of the glass as it disappears. One of the maltier Imperial IPA's I've had but good. I would get this one again.

 325 characters

Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.38/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - this Avery beer pours an amber/copper color with a thin light tan head and average amounts of visible carbonation

S - aroma is pretty basic, the hops have faded a bit as this is about 8-10 months old, but still balance the malts pretty well, there is another characteristic that my buddy and i cannot place, and some background sweetness

T - the roasted malts lend a particular nuttiness to the flavor, which are dominant over the hop profile, which has been diminished some over time, also a rich sweetness, like molasses or brown sugar

M&D - smooth, time has mellowed the hops to balance the malts into nearly a light barleywine-esque-ness, it was smooth and medium bodied, even after time, this is a nice beer

 719 characters

Photo of Ek0nomik
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured In: Snifter Glass
Purchased At: Surdyk's (Minneapolis, MN)

Avery Brewery, check.
IIPA, check.
Celebrating the new POTUS, check.

I know this beer is past its prime, but I found this lonely looking bottle on the shelf this past weekend. Since it's a one time brew, I figured I shouldn't pass it up and I crated it.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy copper color with a finger of head. Although it's too cloudy to see how effervescent it is, you can hear a quiet stream of bubbles grasping for air. I can tell from the smell of sweet sticky malt that lacing will be covering this snifter. Yep, sheets of lacing are scattered across the glass.

Smell: A nice blend of earthy notes with a strong sweet malt backbone. There's also a slight hint of citrus, including some grapefruit and orange peel. The alcohol just every so slightly shines through, with a little harshness climbing into my nose.

Taste: After a few splashes cross the palate, I think I'm ready. First, very sweet caramel malt. They seem to be lending themselves well to the amount of alcohol and hops in this. The sweet malt unravels into earthy notes including pine resin and grass. With the beer leaving my mouth I'm left with a slight bitterness and citrus aftertaste including orange peel and grapefruit rind.

Mouthfeel: A medium bodied beer, slightly on the more full of medium side. The carbonation was a little high when I first cracked open the bottle, but now that it's been sitting for an hour it's just right.

Drinkability: Another well put together beer by Avery. I wouldn't mind seeing the sweet malt cut back just a tad, and a few more cascade hops thrown in, but still a great beer. The ABV makes it a tough one to have on a weeknight, but I'm doing it anyways.

I wish I would have had this in my hand after the election last November after I lit up the cigar to celebrate.

 1,856 characters

Photo of kegger22
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a cloudy orange with a modest head that faded to a collar. The aroma was malt sweet. The taste was not sweet, like the aroma, but bitter and burnt tasting. The feel was full bodied with some carbonation. Drinkability was average. I didn't care for the bitter/burned taste combo.

 285 characters

Photo of jlindros
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this guy from BEERchitect in a great trade. Not much else to say here, so here comes teh review.

A: Pours a huge 2 finger frothy head on top of a pretty clear amber pale orange color.

N: This thing was beaming with aromas as soon as i started pouring. A sweet malt just bashes everything in its path. Some light hints of spices I think, nuttiness. Some nice hops seem to make their way though but keep it light. I got some alcohol as well, a thick malty sweet alcohol. There's also some raisiny smells erupting from it.

T: Starts pretty creamy and malty with some raisin and dried fruits, lots of malty tastes and more and more raisin. SOme alcohol taste starts to find its way through. Some interesting hops seem to come through, but not the usual noble piney fruity hops, but it does have some hints. Some juicy hop flavors also seem to be there. It has a strong imperial red ale flavor.

M: Pretty thick and creamy, warming alcohol but not burn, decent carbonation.

F: Finishes semi dry and very bitter. The hoppy bitterness pieces its way through the finish and really hits you. The dried fruits and some earthy flavors seem to linger as well. More sweetness seems to hint at you in the end, but doesn't take over as it slowly dries off.

Final thoughts: Pretty much an imperial red ale with lots of malts, fruits, sweetness, alcohol, raisins, and lots of hops and bitterness. Pretty good winter or fall beer and warmingness.

 1,437 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours an orange/brown color with about a half inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both good. Aroma is nice, it smells like citrusy hops (grapefruit) and caramel malt, along with a bit of pine hops and bread/grain. Taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, except for that the pine hops are stronger in the taste compared to the aroma. Also, there's a good lingering bitter hoppy finish. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's creamy and slick with good carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's smooth and easy to drink. Alcohol isn't very noticable either. Overall I think this is a pretty decent brew, I enjoyed it.

 674 characters

Photo of badesign
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Served from a bomber in August 2009- no freshness date on bottle so.

Appearance is all but the stereotype of an ideal (D)IPA, marked in my notes as a 'hazy golden sunset.' The aroma is highly complex and fantastic: peach, grapefruity west coast hops, a forest after the rain, butterscotch candy, and just a little booze. The flavor starts with a citrus onslaught, tart and sweet, followed by a long honey sweetness and toasty, buttery malts. Finishes with a big, biting resiny pine and again just the smallest bit of booze.

Mouthfeel is not as sticky as I would expect but is adequate, drinkability is ok but I'm sure I couldn't finish more than one.

An excellent DIPA with plenty of hops but also plenty of malt to back it up, a good beer to spend a night sipping on, and certainly an inspiring premise on which to brew a beer regardless of your politics. Here's a campaign promise: if I ever, against all odds, end up in a position of any power and responsibility whatsoever, all my official events will disavow fine wine in favor of fine beers, just like this one. THAT is change you can believe in.

 1,105 characters

Photo of Chumley
4.68/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have had this beer last summer when it came out, in the fall on tap and now this summer after about a year of resting in the cellar. Very enjoyable beer.

A - Orange Brown color, sustained head.

S - Sweet and Caramelly, floral and Citriusy

T - Bright, balanced lively - Something chocolaty?

M - Smooth, nicely carbonated

D - Impressive, I enjoyed it very much.

 369 characters

Photo of moosiz
3.65/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Wiehenstephan glass this brew pours a burnt orange haze with a creamy white head. Very reminiscent of a west coast ipa.
Moderate carbonation, with very sticky-icky lacing.

Smells like a west coast ipa. Piney/citrus profile backed with a peppery note. Sweet malts dance on grassy fields of hops.

Tastes Grrrreat! A malty sweetness balanced well with the hop pine/grapefruit flavors.

Sticky mouthfeel that lingers for a while. Powerful flavors make themselves known.

Not an easy drinking brew, but it is an easy sippin brew.

 554 characters

Photo of Patrick999
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on a whim at Abraxas....poured into a fairly large, straight-sided glass. Orange-y body, soapy looking head that really looked like it wanted to stick on the glass, but didn't....I'm pretty sure that was the fault of the glass, possibly some detergent residue, as I never get any lacing at Abraxas. I'll give the beer the benefit of the doubt.

Appetizing citric hop aroma.

So, I was bracing myself for a grapefruit hop explosion, but what I got was more of a hit from what seemed like flowery noble hops. Not complaining - it was tasty, but I was surprised. This did not taste like your normal American DIPA. Staunch malt backbone. I don't think I'd call this a DIPA, but whatever it is, I liked it.

Slithery, soapy mouthfeel to go along with the soapy looking head.

It was pretty easy-drinking. Glad to have tried it.

 835 characters

Photo of caddybuyer
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass

A-Murky bright peach amber with a thin creamy head

S-Sweet malts with citrus hops in the background. A pungent nose.

T-Big, sweet caramel malts balanced roll across the palate, followed by the slightly tart citrus hops, a waft of alcohol, and astringent bitterness at the back end. I'm sure this was more hop-centric at oath taking time, but here at the end of August it has mellowed considerably.

M-On the heavier side of medium, with a big creamy feel. Nice balance of carbonation. Well done overall.

D-This is a pretty drinkable and enjoyable beer. A bit sweeter and malt oriented than expected (and I am by no means a hophead) Reminds me very much of DFH 90 Minute.

Another great effort from Avery...I just wish thier beers were not so expensive. This is pretty decent, and if any are left on your shelves, I would not hesitate to give it a try. not what it was when it was young, I am sure, but pretty damn solid with a bit of age.

 984 characters

Photo of Stunner97
4.55/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance- amber brown with low to little carbonation, slightly white foam head and lacing that stays up on the top of the glass, very nice color, and the bottling is just awesome and the statement even better

Smell- such a beautiful smell on this beer, sweet malts and spicey hops mix together for such a beautiful nose, caramel sugar molasses and hops, great great smell

Taste- beautiful taste to me right from the first sip each time I have this, to me they with this beer found the absolute perfect balance between hops and malts, you get the sugar sweetness and the bitter hops both beautifully lacing each other out through a long integrated finish, this is honestly perfection

Mouthfeel- full bodied creamy and soft, just such and even nice mouthfeel

Drinkability- its so drinkable its so dangerous, you cant sense any alcohol and the lingering hoppy finish mixed with the malts leaves you just craving your next sip, Its a long finish and such a perfect balance, I have to say this maybe if not the best one of the best beers I have ever had hands down. Im telling you even Obama haters you have to try this beer. Its of and absolute legend status to me this beer. I really hope that this becomes a full time offering beer though I have fears it wont. Go get this beer before maybe its to late. You will thank me. So so so good.

 1,341 characters

Photo of hughesm4
3.17/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This is not anything that I expected. The bottle states that is a pale ale, but beer advocate lists it as a double ipa. It is very possible that we had an old bottle.
A. There is a copper brown color with a very small amount of head

S. Smells extremely dtrong of malt with maybe a slight hint of hops but not much.

T. Tastes like watered down malt with a little hop after taste.

M. A bitter malty aftertaste

D. struggled through this one. I hope that i just had a bad bottle. This unfortunately was the worst avery that i have had.

 537 characters

Photo of mwa423
3.15/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I can't tell if this is an old bottle or if ba has the style wrong. The bottle specifically says it is a pale ale with some extra hops. I suppose that could be a DIPA that has just aged but I am quite confused about what this is supposed to be.

The smell is all malty sweetness, almost reminds me of malt extract. The appearance was a half finger of head and a cloudy straw color. Appearance was closer to a hefeweizen then anything else.

The taste was all malt and relaticely unimpressive. It is almost like drinking watered down malt. I will have to read a bunch of reviews to get a better idea of what this beer is supposed to be

 634 characters

Photo of Jmoore50
4.3/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a little old, sitting nicely on a BevMo shelf in the San Fran.

I liked the appearance, it was great. It comes with a nice copper amber color that is a slight hazy because of sediment floating around. I also like the two finger frothy head that came about, and the sticky medium lacing that covered the sides of my glass.

The smell was good, hops, hops, and hops. I also got a little sweet alcoholic smell, goes well with the taste.

The taste was good. Still has a hop bite, but mellowed out now because of the age on it. I get a sweetness and a honey influence as well. There is a little alcoholic tinge to the experience but I think that it adds a sort of complexity that I am really liking right now. I also get a dry malt taste that responds with the palate very well.

Good brew, worth the money paid.

J

 824 characters

Photo of MisterClean
3.84/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shared with friends at poker night.

A - Pours a copper-orange with a 2 fingered white head. Little retention, which gives way to no lacing.

S - Honey, caramel, and hearty notes of grapefruit.

T - Honey, caramel, and the hearty notes of grapefruit have been turned on by bittering hops.

M - Moderate bodied, well-balanced, and slightly sweet. May not have fully attenuated.

D - Good, could use some more aroma hops and attenuate a little further.

 450 characters

Photo of TeeCee
3.08/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Quick review - while I'm not an IPA guy, I've found a few recently that I like. This isn't really one of them.

Color - an orangey amber, cloudy. There was yeast in the bottle. Apparently, it's bottle conditioned. The pour, my pour, created about an inch of head, collapsing in short order, leaving lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell - flowery, piney, and when agitated, some overripe fruitiness.

Taste - all the hops I was smelling, some maltiness that I couldn't smell, and that mysterious overripe fruit (not so much that it's the reason that I don't like this beer). The finish is all bitterness to the point that it dries my mouth.

Mouthfeel - medium thin in the mouth. I would have expected a little thicker to balance the hops, but not today.

Closing notes - the Shiner Cheer this past year had a rotten peach flavor to me. That's a bit of what I'm tasting here.

 879 characters

Photo of spratmi
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a hazy amber/burnt orange color with a thick three finger head. Retained a lot of foamy lacing along the sides of the glass.
S: Very strong caramel malt dominated the front end of the nose. There were also notes of sweet floral hops and some citrus bitterness. A slight buttery alcohol presence was also noted.
T: The taste is a wonderfully complex blend of sweet caramel malt and citrus bitters with an alcohol presence at the end. Finishes with a lingering but not overly strong grapefruit bitterness. Hidden in it all is a buttery note throughout.
M: Excellent. Full, rich, and buttery with mild carbonation.
D: Very drinkable. I could easily drink several of these at a sitting. An interesting take on an Imperial IPA.

 732 characters

Photo of PerzentRizen
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First off let me tell you that this beer has been in the fridge since it was purchased. Second, I didn't want to drink it because I cannot stand the current pReSiDeNt - he sucks.

Poured into a tasting cup this beer is deep caramel toffee in color with little head and a generous share of translucency (unlike the presidency thusfar).

The aroma is of cascade and chinook hops and a decent malt backbone. I wish our current president had as much - unfortunately he's a real pussy.

The taste is decent and has a high hop profile with a major alpha acid bite throughtout the experience.

The mouthfeel is light and femine much like Barrack herself.

The drinkability is fairy easy much like Mr. and Mrs. President. Let's hope this beer lasts longer than the president's reign.

 775 characters

Photo of number1bum
3.38/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a burnt orange amber color with a slight haze to it and three fingers of creamy light beige head. Lacing is very good, with a thick and very full lace and a ton of stick on the sides.

Smell is full of resiny pine, as well as earthy and bitter grapefruit hop aromas. Big malt presence as well, with bready and toasty grain as well as some caramel.

Taste starts off ok, with some caramel sweetness, toasted malt and a blast of pine. Midway through it starts to go downhill, however, with a gritty, very earthy and otherwise off flavor that I can't completely place. It becomes most acute in the finish, which is very bitter and tastes of soap scum, dirt and metal. I found myself needing to cleanse my mouth with another sip, the first half of which is pretty good, or a splash of water to wash the bitter, unpleasant aftertaste from my mouth. This off flavor really killed this one for me; it was so persistent that even a 3.5 was too high.

Mouthfeel is a bit more than medium bodied and pretty creamy, but not all that smooth owing to the gritty, dirty off flavor in the finish. Has a bit of a slick, oily feel to it but finishes chalky and somewhat dry.

Whether this is a DIPA, IPA, Pale Ale or somewhere in between two of the three, I must admit to being disappointed by this one. I'm a huge fan of Maharaja and Avery in general, but the off flavor in this one was unexpected and unpleasant. It's an ok beer, but doesn't come close to Avery's typical standard. I have another bottle in the fridge to share with my dad this weekend, so if this bottle seemed to be an anomaly I will revisit as appropriate. If not, I won't revisit this one again.

 1,656 characters

Ale To The Chief from Avery Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 384 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe