Ale To The Chief | Avery Brewing Company

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Ale To The ChiefAle To The Chief
BA SCORE
4.02/5
Exceptional
623 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:
#3,865
Reviews:
405
Ratings:
623
pDev:
9.7%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
26
Gots:
37
Trade:
1
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 623 |  Reviews: 405
Photo of nrombes
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

Photo of 1759Girl
4.26/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

This was recommended to me by some brewer friends while we could find it on tap:)
Appearance> Hazy, red-amber in colour, lacing was asi-asi. Not much head to speak of.
Smell> Excellent resiny hop aroma
Taste> Sweet, strong, complext, hoppy, but smoothes out to a smooth finish.
Mouf> okay... foamy... okay
Drinkability> Sure.

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Photo of Douglas14
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A little disappointed with this one. Not that it isn't good but because I was expecting more. I suppose it is my fault for loving Avery so much. Pretty traditional DIPA but with an Avery twist. The twist comes through because of it's unique hop bouquet that smells almost nutty...first time I've gotten that experience from an IPA. The taste is similar with the nuttiness turning more into a woody flavor. Good beer but not what I was expecting.

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Photo of corey0212
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a glowing honey/orange color, sturdy & foamy two-finger head fades extremely slowly into a 1/4" layer, thick sheets of lacing coat the inside of the glass....this is an incredible pour. Smell is rich with caramel malt, piney hops take a backseat, but they come through nicely. Really nice balance on this one...thick/gooey caramel flavors, lots more pine on the tongue, some faint bitter grapefruit. Sticky mouthfeel, lots of lingering bitterness and piney aftertaste. A really nice Imperial IPA.

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Photo of drperm
4.23/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, poured into a tall pilsner glass.

Notes: 2 December 2008...obviously, I also couldn't wait until Inaguration Day to whip this puppy out, but I might try to find another to replace it with!

Appearance: Enticing and intriguing, with the beautiful orange color of apricot or mango nectar. A thin -- yet tenacious -- creamy white head laces the top.

Aroma: The first thing that hits the nose is the alcohol, but it quickly flows into a nice bouquet of hops and sweet malt, with some mysterious fruitiness lurking beneath the surface...

Taste: The nose does NOT prepare you for the treasure trove of flavor that greets the tongue! Cantaloupe, persimmon, apricot, peach ice cream, and sweet resinous hop (sorry, folks, I get no grapefruit) lead into a finish that *almost* hints at fresh cardamom. The finish is dizzying and, strong as it is, begs -- nay, dares -- you to take another sip. And another.

Palate: Oh, boy, do you ever feel that 8.75%! It definitely finishes like an Imperial/DIPA. Based on the nose and preliminary tongue, I fear the sweetness that seems to be on the way -- but somehow it all works. It flirts with being too sweet, but never commits. The spicy hop finish tames the candy corn and sends it away.

Overall: This is one of THE best new beers I've had in a long while. It is quite complex and enjoyable. I doubt I could have more than one at a time (it's just too strong, and the 22 oz almost defeated me!) -- but, after all, one *can* only have one beer at a time...It's so heady, it's almost in league with certain barleywines.

Try with spicy Indian food. It worked great with a Senegalese peanut soup we made. I'd also be tempted to try this alongside pistachio ice cream or even a hot peach cobbler.

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Photo of natelocc787
4/5  rDev -0.5%
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.

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Photo of Rainintheface
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: copper with the slightest cloudiness. has a one inch off white head which clings nicely most of the way down.

S: freshly sliced grapefruit, orange, mint and a cabbagey/vegetation kind of smell

T: has a rye-like spiciness. citrus with some malt lingering in the back

M: moderate in body, rather crisp with some hop bitterness. very nice feel

D: great drinkabilty

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Photo of nickss
4.39/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice deep orange with a smallish, but resilient head.

One of the best aromas from a brew I've drank in quite some time. Huge grapefruit aroma with a very strong hop presence.

Huge piney aroma... lots of hops in this one. That said, there is a bit of balance. Pretty nice all around.

Nice crisp mouthfeel... good and chewy... pretty much what you would want in a DIPA

Very drinkable for a brew of this abv. I could certainly knock a few of these back in one sitting. I have really come to appreciate Avery's hoppy brews, and this is certainly a credit to the brewery.

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Photo of TheJollyHop
3.72/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Excited to try this beer, and figured Jan 20, 2010 was the perfect day to do so.

I decanted the beer into a tulip glass, noticing its cloudy amber color. A thin finger's worth of head was produced, and no lacing was left behind in the glass.

Strong malt aroma with a very faint pine hop presence. Ample fruity esters and some faint alcohol.

Light caramel upfront with some orange and raisin sweetness followed by some pine flavor. Bitterness builds and gives way to an alcohol burn. Very boozy; I mean full on wave of alcohol heat. Bitterness tingles on the tongue long after the swallow. Not bad tasting, just a little unbalanced.

Medium carbonation but full-bodied and extremely chewy.

Overall the boozy, wild alcohol hinders drinkability. If the alcohol was better masked this beer would be very drinkable.

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Photo of AChamberlain
3.63/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this on election night, watching the numbers come in. Orange, hazy. Orangish creme head. Wet hop aroma reminiscent of maharajah. Sweet tea flavor, grassy. Hoptastic. Subdued bite. Alcohol warming. Pretty smooth drinker. Good, but to boozy and sweet to be highly drinable. Tasty, though.

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Photo of DeezGunz14
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

Photo of jnn4v
3.28/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

What can I say? I had very high expectations for this beer, but it fell flatly short of all of them.

A: It had a nice golden color, bordering on amber. I bit hazy, but still translucent. Nothing wrong here. Looking good.

S: Not the smell I anticipated from the description on the bottle. I'd say it was mostly that of tea leaves, lemon, and possibly some orange zest. Interesting, but odd. I'll give it "above-average" just for being interesting and not offensive in any way.

T: Bitter, but not a typical hop bitterness. Again, it tastes like someone made iced tea but left the tea bag in way too long. That sort of astringent, unpleasant bitterness not often tasted in quality beers. The mid-taste lemon hits you followed by a trailing hint of sweetness and orange zest and then an even harsher bitter aftertaste. Fortunately, as it warmed to 55-60 degrees, it did mellow out a bit and more of the malt was evident.

M: Good texture for a high-caliber ale. Relatively thick, moderate carbonation with small bubbles. This is one of the better attributes of this beer.

D: Started below average, ended above average once it warmed, so I'm giving it "average" overall.

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Photo of orcasteve
4.8/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

i work third shift and just voted so i am selebrating election day with this one, poureed into my saint arnold pint glass, this one poured a thick semi cloudy orange with a nice thick slightly yellow head on it, the head spuwed from the neck of the bottle as i opened this, hops filled the air. i loved this befor i ever tasted it. the taste is citrus hops, orange, biscuts, caned fruit, fresh mowed grass, and a bitter after taste that just wont quit. this hides the alchoal well and i just couldent stop pounding untill it was gone. i wish i had more of these for sure

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Photo of BRLockwood
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

Photo of varian7
3.93/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of selecter70
3.33/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I grabbed one of these in November, awaiting Inauguration Day, as the bottle cellared awaiting me! The excitment & anticipation was I think, the best element to this no so exceptional IPA style ale. The pour was a vibrant & bright pale orange with 2 finger head that snuck away soon, leaving white lace & a floral-grass hoppy aroma. The mouth was smooth and the flavor a strong but not bitter hops, with heathery grass & lemon tones. Nice IPA but sadly not everything I hoped the Inauguration would bring!

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Photo of shufon
5/5  rDev +24.4%

Photo of goatgoat
3.3/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber that pours with a thick creamy tan head which falls quickly to a thin cap. Very little lacing on glass. Aroma is strong earthy spice and citrus hops with a slight honeyish malt. Also a tint of alcohol. Flavor is more balanced than most double IPAs. Maybe because Avery bills it as a double pale, or possibly because of age. The hops are moderated by the malt, producing a pretty balanced flavor. The bitterness doesn't really pull in front until fairly late, keeping on in the aftertaste. Medium body.

A little light for a DIPA. I expect an over the top experience from this style and I didn't really get that.

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Photo of Dwreck
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of SirSketch
3.59/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

So long, Bush. Hello change!

A - Appearance was by far the high point of this beer... very beautiful! Wonderful deep red color with dark yellow highlights. Very clean/clear as well. Has a frothy white head that sticks well. Perfect in this respect.

S - Spicy hop character with citrus and wet grass notes. Malt aroma is present but doesn't make much of an impact.

T - Hop character is dominant and ranges from citrus to grassy. Bitterness is high and there is no real malty sweetness to counter balance, but some biscuit maltiness is detectable. Not too much residual sweetness either. Nice, but not incredible, by any means.

M/D - Very 'sticky' in the mouth, but the amount of carbonation makes it incredibly drinkable.

An enjoyable beer, though I may have scored it lower than I would have normally if it wasn't Obama's Inauguration. Hail to the Chief!

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

Poured from the 22 oz bottle into a Fin Du Monde glass. It is a nice hazy orange-amber and the ample head is off-white and leaves a lot of lacing.

Nose is caramel, anise, coriander and hoppy pine. There is also some dried-good/fish-store smell I cannot place, maybe caraway.

Taste is tangy and hoppy and bitter with little to no sweetness, but a good malt balance and a spicy aftertaste. And an earthiness that seems to go with the smell I couldn't place.

The mouthfeel is round but not real big, well carbonated and clean and dry.

I would be happy to drink more of this and it goes down with relative ease.

Avery makes some nice beers and this is no exception. There is a complexity that I cherish in beers but find on few occasions. I hope to revisit and see if I can place the smell and taste a bit more specifically.

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Photo of poisoneddwarf
4.04/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Tdizzle
3.28/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Purchased at BevMo! in Brea.

A- Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass, this beer pours amber with a billowy two-finger head that's white in color. The head settles to a thin layer that never completely dissipates, leaving some web-like lacing on the glass after each sip.

S- A decent amount of piney hops with a faint malt backing that has a slightly sweet, vegetable-like aroma to it. The 8.75% ABV becomes more noticeable as the beer warms.

T- The bitterness is not nearly as intense as I would have hoped for from an Imperial Pale Ale. That vegetable-like maltiness that the aroma possesses is also present in the flavor of this beer. The finish is only slightly dry and leaves a mild bitterness on the back of the tongue, along with a bit of a kick from the alcohol.

M- A full-bodied feel with medium carbonation.

D- I had trouble finishing an entire bomber of this beer. I just didn't care for its flavor, and the 8.75% ABV is more pronounced than I would have expected.

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Photo of Frosty80
4.47/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Color: hazy golden brown

Smell: very hoppy/piney. hint of pineapple and malty/sugary sweetness. wonderful aroma

Taste: great balance of strong hop presence and malt. character carries over from aroma. little bit of yeast in the finish

Mouthfeel: low carbonation. medium body

Notes: a centerfold of an imperial IPA. hops and alcohol tingles all the way through. gives Ruination a run with a little more fruit in the nose and on the tongue

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Photo of bigbelcher
4.53/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lot's of well deserved hype about this beer. Big rocky head that lingers for quite a while. Exceptional amount of Belgian Lace indicating the great body of the beer. Color is deep golden.
Aroma is very fruity and crisp hop aroma of citrus. Flavor resembles a smoother version of Maharaja with more malt sweetness. Alcohol is well disguised and masked by the malt and hops. Veery well carbonated as indicated by the lingering head. Wish is were a regular Avery beer instead of a seasonal.

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Ale To The Chief from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 623 ratings