Bitter Biker | Spiteful Brewing

very good
14 Reviews
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Bitter BikerBitter Biker

Brewed by:
Spiteful Brewing
Illinois, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Cyclists beware! This city is a minefield: potholes, ruthless cabbies, pedestrians texting - and a headwind from hell. Arm yourself! This Double India Pale Ale was brewed for you. Loaded with Zythos, Columbus, and Falconer's Flight 7c's hops. Bitter Biker is our homage to the trials of the year-round biker. Ride Safe, stay bitter, and watch out for oblivious fools!

Added by TMoney2591 on 02-11-2013

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Reviews: 14 | Ratings: 103
Photo of GuyFawkes
3.72/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Unknown vintage; drank 8/19/14 @ the Yarchives.

Poured from the can into a glass.

Semi-opaque orange color.

Off-white head; thick lace.

Winter pine, grapefruit & sweet honey notes in the nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Mango, grapefruit, pine & caramel nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Mango, grapefruit, pine & caramel flavors, but the harshly bitter finish kills the vibe. At least they warned me.

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Photo of DannyMac614
3.86/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This beer is true to the name! Bitter but wonderful! A awesome hop aroma from the Columbus and a great caramel end taste to help balance it all out! It's strong but great. I was fortunate to have this brewery a few ocks from me and had this the day after it was canned! Extremely fresh!!! I must admit thought! The full flavor came out in my opinion about a week or so later! Overall great beer for hop heads and bitter bikers alike. Cheers!!

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Photo of TwelveOunces
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle pouring into a pint glass

Batch 55, dated 9-26-13

A- Pours incredibly hazy orange color. Not much of an off white head.

S- Doesn't smell like its only a month old. A dark fruit tone an overly ripened fruits. A sugary malt backbone.

T- A more balanced IPA then I expected. The sugary sweet and caramel flavored backbone really offsets the bitterness and adds good feel to the beer. The beer is bitter and hoppy, but it does seem the hops have died off slightly. There is still a bit of onion, pine, lime. A more herbal and astringent hop flavor.

M- Bitter, but well balanced and a nice feel.

O- Decent enough for a DIPA, although mine is fairly young it has the hop flavoring of an aged IPA. Oh well, give it a shot,

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.69/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Spiteful Brewing Bitter Biker double IPA. 9.5 % ABV.
I had this for the first time at a bar/restaurant called The Bad Apple in Chicago, IL. I was intrigued by the similarity to something like, say, Surly Brewing Bitter Brewer Ale. Found a bunch of bottles at that Binny's in Schaumburg, IL, and went with this one, among a half dozen choices, despite the horrible illustration. Blech! None of the others I saw were very much better. Nonetheless, I'm going to take down this bomber, starting …now.

Highly hazed…deep amber/nearly orange. Good 1/2 inch head of chalk white forage. Not bad. Quite nice, actually.

Aroma: ah! There's the pine, there's the citrus, the mango and grapefruit and orange of it all, a bit bitter, and a bit refreshingly lovely. Double nice.

Taste: First the malt comes over, a bit o' sweetness, followed by the hop hit on the palate. Some cocoa and caramel arrives on the palate, bumping up against the citrus and pine contributed by the hops. An interesting mix.

Let's stop and read the label, shall we? ""Don't fight it. Spite it! Cyclists beware! This city is a minefield: potholes, ruthless cabbies, pedestrians texting---and a headwind from hell. (sic) Arm yourself! This double India Pale Ale was brewed for you. Loaded with Zythos, Columbus, and Falconer's Flight 7c's hops. Bitter Biker is our homage to the trials of the year round biker. Ride safe, stay bitter, and watch out for oblivious fools!" Batch #9, it also informs us, in hand-inked numeration.

About the beer: This will not challenge any lists of favorite or best double IPAs out there. Simply said, politely put. But it's what these guys are doing. Not everyone can be the best, some just do what they do. And what it is is pretty darned tasty.
I have the feeling that these guys will always be Chicago's scrappy upstarts, and they may not be the next Half Acre or Revolution, certainly not the next Goose Island. They've got a punk rock attitude, and a DIY aesthetic, but the beer comes out well, so they've got that going for them, right?

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Photo of timc100
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Batch 24

A: Really nice looking. Dark amber/blood orange, off white head that sticks around for days. Pretty sticky retention

S: Interesting. A kind of metallic note (don't know how else to describe it) that I got off hopslam this year in a bad way, and what I get off all no-coast IPA's in a good way - so I'm assuming a concentrated astringency and resin. It doesn't do much for it but take away. There is a sweet biscuit and melon character that comes through. Very bitter, concentrated grapefruit oil and not-very-sticky resin.

T: Again interesting. This is only their second batch of this, and I assume it will get better each time. The concentrated metallic astringency, as I have labeled it, dominates. There is more citrus and tropical hop fruitiness. There is a really nice astringent tropical fruit kick at the end. Very resinous and sticky.

P: Very smooth, a little thin, chewy at the finish.

O: Nice DIPA. I love ghost biker pale and can imagine this being a great beer, however, at the moment it is a little messy. Looking forward to future batches.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch #6
(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a clear slightly dense deep aged copper body with a bubbly light beige head that last a good bit.

S- The new sneakers aroma blends with pithy hops and a slightly sweaty earthy quality that turns into a buttery toast aroma as it opens.

T- The big bitterness stings the tongue and lingers for a good bit after each sip. There is a light toasted dry malt flavor that turns a bit more caramel when it opens and some buttery diacetyl follows. Some minty and pine qualities to the hops come through as it warms but the bitter dandelion milk hops still bite after each sip.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no real alcohol heat but it does have a bit of a slippery texture as it opens.

O- The big pithy sweaty beer has a bit too much bitterness without much hop flavor or aroma and not enough malt support. There are some sweaty, buttery flavors that are off but they don’t detract from the bitterness.

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Photo of KFBR392
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark orange color that borders on a light red amber. Low carbonation overall. Head only got to about a finger at the most on the pour.

Smell: a nice balance of sweet hops and heavy syrup. The brightness of the hops seems to jump out more, but a thick maple syrup, malt, toffee, and caramel undertone is very prevalent. A touch of spices and alcohol can be found as well.

Taste: The front is a very light and sugary sweet hop kiss. This rolls directly into a hard hop bitterness with a very solid malt backbone. Has a completely saturated citrus flavor, carbonation feel is low due to overpowering citrus. Sticky pine and leafy greens linger around for a very long time after drinking. The alcohol warms up the back end of this beer quite a bit as well.

Mouthfeel: Dry with a little more alcohol burn then one would hope. There is some sweet hops and molasses hang around which make up for it.

Overall: The Chicagoland area seems to be producing quite a few high quality IPAs right now. You can include this beer in that category and seems to be just a tick off being an elite IPA

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Photo of WolfsbaneBloom
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #6

Appearance: Pours a glowing bright orange with a touch of haziness. Two fingers of light and frothy foam.

Smell: First thing I get right off the bat is a big and distinct aroma of strawberries. I've never gotten that in a beer before. Quite nice. There's also some biscuit malts, and a little mango.

Taste: Some big bold bitterness here. Mainly resinous pine and something that reminds me of black licorice. There's also a bit of spice in the finish. A bit leafy as well. Alcohol isn't detectable until the beer has significantly warmed.

Mouthfeel: This stuff coats your tongue something fierce, although not really unpleasantly so. Slightly heavier body than your typical double IPA. Fairly well carbonated and prickly on the tongue.

Bitter Biker definitely lives up to its name but I didn't think that this one went overboard on the bitterness, as others have mentioned. I really enjoyed the unique strawberry notes in the aroma and I thought the flavor was interesting as well. I was also pleasantly surprised at how tasty this one remained well after it had warmed. It mellowed out really nicely and went down smooth, even with the alcohol making an appearance in the finish.

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Photo of inlimbo77
3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz, Batch #9 (Feb. 2013)
Riedel tulip

A: Slightly hop hazed amber color. Off white layer of about a fingers worth of head. Good carbonation. Sticky lacing sheets forming.

S: With those off centered hops, getting mostly pine and earthy smells here. Along with sweet malts. Some nuttiness. Almost amber like.

T: Tip of the tongue, nice sharp hop bitterness. Lots of pine. Big floral. Sweet malts. Centered hops that round. Dry finish.

M: Medium bodied leading into full with those malts.

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Photo of Florida9
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Deep rusty orange in color. Clear. Forms a moderate sized very off-white head that is very stable and leaves a good bit of lacing on the way down.

S: Aroma is full on citrus. Orange, grapefruit, orange blossom, and a bit of citrus rind.

T: Taste is more of the same. Mildly sweet citrus, with orange rind, and grapefruit dominating. Some very mild caramel malts. This one is fairly high with the IBU's and is unapologetically bitter resulting in a good bit of resiny pine on the finish

M: On the heavier side of medium. Aggressively bitter. Appropriate carbonation.

O: I liked this beer. It's aggressive and in your face with a strong dose of both bitterness and good ole American hops. But, while I wouldn't call it balanced, there is enough malty sweetness to keep it from becoming too lopsided.

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Photo of chanokokoro
3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle marked Batch #6 into an unbranded short-stemmed tulip/snifter

Pours a deep, clear amber with golden highlights capped by a cream colored fluffy two finger head. Above average retention and some splotchy lacing. Pineapple, tropical notes, caramel maltiness, and whiffs of clean alcohol on the nose. Pineapple, zesty mandarin orange, big caramel malt midpalate. Caramel carries through the finish and is joined by warming alchohol and intensely bitter citrus rind; really intensely bitter citrus rind, which leaves a very strong aftertaste. Huge full body due to the large malt backbone which puts this beer on par with most American barleywines. Moderate, gentle carbonation, soapy and smooth on the palate. This brew is truly a palate wrecker. The strong bitterness of the finish really pushes my limit and trends just a bit too intense at times.

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Photo of WYVYRN527
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #6. Poured from a 22-oz. bottle.

A: Pours a deep amber with about a finger of off-white head that slowly settles and leaves thin lace on the side of the glass.

S: Lots of caramel up front, with some citrus, pineapple and piney hop notes. Slight eucalyptus properties along with a medicinal scent in the background.

T: Much like the smell. Caramel and dried fruits up front, with some citrus, mango, and pineapple on the mid-palate. On the back end, hops lend some floral, grassy undertones, along with s slight medicinal bitterness.

M: Pretty full-bodied for the style. Resinous and chewy, but does not coat the palate like some others. Finish is actually pretty clean.

O: I happen to like this beer. Well-balanced, and has complex flavor. It could just be me, but I look for that in this style rather than the full-on hop assault many others seek out. Solid by all means. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of emerge077
3.67/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Bright high clarity orange, lots of creamy foam that leaves behind some sticky lacing in the glass. Pretty good coverage, a skim stays across the surface after half the glass.

Floral, sandalwood, dried citrus peel aroma.

Super bitter, aspirin and alcohol, somewhat abrasive and astringent with little to no sweetness. Leafy, vegetal greenery, bitter arugula and dandelion, though the minor hop flavors are overshadowed a little by the rough feel.

As a Chicago bike commuter, I can appreciate the label and name of the beer, although it's probably not one i'll seek out again.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.6/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

Not sure why, but I think of my old pog collection when I look at this label. Anyway, this stuff pours a clear salmon-copper (that's a new one) topped by a finger of cream-white foam. The nose comprises grapefruit zest, pine sap, peach flesh, timid caramel, and a hint of eucalyptus. The taste brings in more of the same, focusing on the bitter rinds of the aforementioned fruits instead of the bright flesh. A lingering sense of citrus-y chlorophyll keeps an extended vigil throughout the aftertaste, producing an almost medicinal flavor in the process. The body is a lithe medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Overall, a solid DIPA, though the bitterness was overdone a bit, especially considering the fruity promises made by the smell. Still, I wouldn't necessarily be averse to another somewhere down the line.

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Bitter Biker from Spiteful Brewing
3.82 out of 5 based on 103 ratings.
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