Leather Lips IPA | The Tap Brewing Company

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Leather Lips IPALeather Lips IPA
Very Good
410 Ratings
Leather Lips IPALeather Lips IPA

Brewed by:
The Tap Brewing Company
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
he brewing process by itself contains enough Nugget and Chinook to satisfy the most seasoned hop head. But we couldn’t leave it alone. Once fermentation is complete we add a massive hop bag to the bright tank that is bursting at the seams with whole cone Centennial for an aroma that you just can’t get any other way. High fives all around.

Added by Bierman9 on 04-05-2004

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 410 |  Reviews: 301
Photo of bkett01
4.52/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours up with a transparent amber hue covered by a thin eggshell colored head that settles down to evenly coat the entire surface. Smells of fresh grassy hops straight from the bomber. Hard to detect any malt amongst as the hops dominate the nose.
I've heard people ask what "green" tastes like... and this is it. Green grassy flavor overwhelms a sweet toasted malt. I love the raw hop flavor I get from this brew, and even though the growler has been sitting in my fridge for a couple weeks, it tastes as if I just pulled up a seat at The Tap.
The drinkability is incredible, and can be dangerous when spending time at the brewpub. Great Beer. Great Brewpup. Recommended!

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Photo of bruachan
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i do love me some hops
poured a fairly nice clear copper color that left behind some, but not a huge amount of, lace. the hop oils contributed to a short but tight head

the aroma is of resiny hops, and though good, not particularly balanced (do we want that anymore?). jilted citrus flavors allow a ray of bright malt to stick through and show me some caramel and toffee, but it's only a quick glimpse

nice brew, but i think i've had it before. is that bad? maybe not (the germans would say "no")

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Photo of LPorter33
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From cask, at Bukowski's in Inman Sq.

Hops just dominate this glowing amber colored beer. Grapefruit and pine dominance mixed in with a nice frothy white head. It's a pretty beer but it quite one dimensional in the hops department. It reminds me of Stone's IPA except a bit more harsh and in your face. I, like others, am shocked this is only 5% as it tastes ~7%. I recommend it for hop lovers but it's just a bit too much for more than 1 pint. An impressive, powerful IPA but there's others out there which are a bit more dynamic.

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Photo of Bierman9
4.48/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Quaffed a couple of pints last night whilst in the good company of Goz and Woodchandler (Obi-wan-kawoody?). The bier menu at The Tap listed it as 5.6%, fwiw....

My pint glass was filled by Drizz with a medium golden-copper hued libation. 'Twas clear within, save for the steady stream of carbonation heading topside. And topside was found a thin, marshmallow white layer of foam, which left a superb trail of lace down the glass. The aroma laid some toasty malt on me, along with some sharp, citrussy hop action. Considering the robust character of the flavor detailed below, I was surprised the aroma was not that strong. Solid body; yes, a good medium-plus! And silky smooth on the tongue... oh my!

Flavor starts with lightly toasty malt, lending just a touch of sweetness to the proceedings. Soon thereafter, and I mean real soon, the palate gets blasted by a huge hit o' hops! Sharp and biting citrus notes coat the insides. Heavily west-coast-like and resiny, yet not entirely grapefruity. Seems to have a smidge of a spicy side, and it all just lingers and lingers.... Quite welcome, I must add! This sucka could be quaffed all night long!


overall: 4.45
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | mouthfeel: 4.5 | drinkability: 5


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Photo of gentlebubbles
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

on cask at Redbone's 5/1/06

Lovely honey color with cremy white cookie that leaves sheets of fluff on the glass.

Grapefruit leaps into your nose.

Tender mouthfeel.

This all about the hops: orange and grapefruit with a powerful resin
and grassy finish and grapefruit rind on the lips. Poor malt! I know you're in there somewhere!

What a great way to bring cask back to Redbone's!

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Photo of bjohnson
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Bukowski's Boston. In a 22oz. mug.

A: Pours a hazy golden color with hues of yellow and a white frothy one and a half to two finger head that retains nicely. Leaves rings of lace down the glass.
S: Aromas of citrus, especially grapefruit, with some floral notes in there also. Smells very fresh and hoppy.
T: Grapefruit and floral hops hit the palate first with a bang followed by some sneaky wheaty malts that creap in there. Dominate hops taste with a wonderful bitter ending. Definately a great tasting IPA.
M & D: Mouthfeel on this beer is very good. Bitter and dry finish makes one anxious for the next gulp. Smooth and highly drinkable with a low abv makes me think I could have a bunch of these at lunch and NOT go back to work. Seems like a good beer to drink in the sun as the dry finish makes you come back for more to quench your thirst. I wish they bottled these suckers! Rivals some of the very hoppy double ipa's as the hop blast is awesome. Beware of hops and bitterness.

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Photo of twelvsies
4.88/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Leatherlips IPA:
Currently sweeping the nation!
This beer will put some hair on your chest. A nice golden looking ale, nice and clear, with a hearty, bubbly thick head. Smells doughy and grainy, and from several feet away. Speaking of feet, there was almost a raw sort of funky smell to this one, really unique for an IPA. Also, plenty of hops in there. And they come out full force in the taste. Puckering bitterness. This beer just evaporates you. Dry as the Sahara. Plenty of grapefruit rind, crab apples, and dusty wood floors. Yet it backs you up with plenty of bready, doughy, yeasty malts. Wow, I can't really remember describing an IPA like that. Pretty unique guys. The thing is, it has an amazingly light, floaty mouthfeel. Incredible for such a complex beer. And I can't believe it's only clocking in at %5. Had this one on tap at Bukowski's, but I'm gonna have to make it up to The Tap at some point, because this beer is killer.

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Photo of Gogol
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(0002) Reviewed: 1/11/06.
On tap at the Horseshoe Pub, Hudson, MA. Temperature appropriate for a kegged beer.

Appearance: Color orangey, with a thick (0.5”), tight head that dissipated slowly. Lace: not much.

Smell: BLAST of hops!

Taste: Another blast of hops, nearly no malt in evidence to balance out. Bitterness starts at the beginning and lasts looong after the beer has gown down the hatch. Hop heaven!

Mouthfeel: Spare. Impression is that of a framework on which to hang the hops. Its there, but it seems to be distracted with its struggle to keep the hops in the foreground.

Drinkability: Pretty dang good, but it’s definitely not a session beer! I mean, I’m a bit of a hophead, but I suspect that my taste buds would tire of it long before a case of it was gone.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
4.35/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A hop bomb on a day that I was craving some serious hops. Had just moved into my new apartment the day before and was looking for a good puckering so we took a short road trip to Haverhill. Poured a lot lighter than I expected--an amber/orange hue with a two centimeter thick head that receded to around the edges of the glass. Layered lace would form with each sip. Intense hop flavors that first hit you in the nose with lots of floral and citrus hops. The olfactory sensation is quickly followed by a taste bud smack down the is rich with hops. Slight buttery malts provide a nice balance, but do not kid yourself, this beer is all about the hops. Surprisingly light body too helped make this beer very easy to work through.

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Photo of jamesclark
3.18/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Anam Cara. This was a clear amber-yellow, with not much of a head.

It had a crisp smell, hoppy, not earthy as much as floral. There was a slight medicinal smell.

The flavor was light, wet, and very bitter. Not much alcohol to notice, but the hops were tangy and pungent. The flavor was a little too mild, almost watered-down, and a little metallic. Malt was not very noticeable. The finish was dry and simple, leaving some hop flavor behind.

This beer was drinkable, and reasonably tasty. However, I felt that the body was lacking, and the (slight) medicinal and metallic notes left me wanting something different.

After posting this review, I am told that the beer was "out of an old Theakston cask from England," which might be responsible for the "lack of body or head". I look forward to giving this a second try, to see how much better it can be.

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Photo of Rastacouere
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orangey-amber hue proposes a lasting white head displaying good lacing. The nose is straightforward, very clean hoppy nose, appealing complex hop profile, very foresty, earthy and citrusy letting anticipate a citric acidity in mouth. The hops have a definite green feel to them and are indeed tart and citrusy, but they don’t suffer from a lack of malt. We feel a most welcomed sweetness as this gets a bit astringent. Resinous and straightforward, but still good. I don’t like IPAs as much as most people, to me it’s a refreshing style that only serves to tame hop cravings and I’ll always prefer a well hopped yeasty dry Belgian for that. Therefore, you won’t see me handing this above 4, but among ths IPAs I’ve had, this is easily in the top quarter, so if you do like IPAs, you’ll definitely enjoy this a lot and being on their regular roster, this makes it all the more worth seeking out.

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Photo of LiamStLiam
4.7/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I drink a lot of IPAs, and this is my all-time favorite.

I have had it on tap at The Tap and at the Publick House.

This is a seriously aggressive beer. It grabs you by the throat, kinda like talking to the brewer.

But . . . it is very, very drinkable. You have to think when you drink it, because it changes as the session goes on.

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Photo of warriorsoul
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First had this tasty IPA at Hophead Throwdown...finally made it up to the brewpub for a first hand experience.
This particular IPA is much lighter than your typical...golden in color w/ thick white head. Lace was thin and dried up quickly on the side of the glass.
Served the perfect temperature to unleash its buttery hop goodness this treasure is.
Taste is pretty intense, but not thick at all...after all, this is by no means pushing the hop boundaries. There is a hint of malt to make this a well balanced IPA, but the grapefruit hoppiness is what you will remember. Very smooth texture w/ a bitter finish...no alcohol present...making this one hell of a session brew. I put down two of these and it would have been a heck of a lot more if I wasn't driving.
Thanks to the fine folks at the Tap...one heck of an establishment serving up quality brews.

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Photo of deejaydan
4.77/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

First off, thanks to my secret santa, Hotsauceathlete for a growler of this nectar!

Pours with a huge head, that settles after a while. I tried careful pouring, but it still produces a sizeable head. Wonderful Yellow-Orange color.

Smell is of a great mix of hops. I get some citrus notes, some minty notes, and a touch of piney notes in the background.

Taste is very refreshing. Juicy hop zing, followed by a sweet malt rush, and a then a pow of bitterness at the back of the throat.

Mouthfeel is crisp. A very clean and well managed yeast feremented this, I'd say. It doesn't finish thin or thick, it's *just right*

I could finish this growler off tonight, if I didn't have to go to work in the morning... this beer is delightful.

I'd dare say that I think this beer is the best IPA I've tried.

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Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at The Tap.

WARNING: This beer is not for the faint-hearted. Prepare to have your ass and palate kicked.

The color is a nearly clear copper with ruby tinges. Nice level of lace on top that leaves a appreciable ring of lace after each sip. Aromas...oh wowsers. An intense plethora of hoppy scents: resinous pine oils, floral...it's just fantastic. The smells wash over your nose and flay your nasal passages into submission. Flavor is intensely bitter initially, but is tempered by the backbone of malt sweetness. Finish is mouth-puckering and has some definite grapefruit notes. Low ABV means you can throw down a few pints and still be coherent. Quite the different IPA, to say the least. Another must-try from Dann.

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Photo of ViveLaChouffe
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Tap in Haverhill

Pours a hazy orange with a forthy ivory head. Smells of hops and a light fruitiness.

OK, the taste is almost pure hops up front. Not a citrusy or floral hoppiness, it's a pit-bull-on-your-tongue biting bitterness. It's snappy and crisp hops. Pure, sharp bite. After about half a pint, you can detect the graininess and breadiness of the malt. There is actually a nice malt profile to counter the hops. But this is a hops showcase, a hoppy infusion. It's unbalanced but not as much as you would think upon your initial tasting. It is deceptively complex. Hops linger on the tongue forever. If you are a hophead, it is a must try. Very pleased with this one.

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Photo of fdrich29
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Anam Cara.

Sweet Jesus!! Hops in a pint glass.

You can not call yourself a true hop head unless you can keep up with this bad boy from the Tap. You have to work your way up to his one, earn it if you will. Not for hop novices.

This is the first review I'm not going to go through the categories, it will only waste your time. It smells and tastes purely of hops. If that sounds good to you it's highly drinkable, if not you probably won't finish your pint.

The mouthfeel does deserve some description. Imagine all the moisture being sucked out of your mouth and someone dry rubbing hops on your palate. That's pretty much what it feels like after you have a few sips of Dann's hoppy nectar.

Don't expect to be able to taste anything else after you drink a pint of this. You might as well drink Bud, you're taste buds won't know the difference.

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Photo of RocketWidget
4.4/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Anam Cara.

Pours a big orange color. Extremely light, white head. Low carbonation. Smell is hoppier than most.

This is the pinnacle of hoppy beers. Not JUST a hoppy flavor, not JUST dominating with a taste of hops, the taste of this beer is EXCLUSIVELY hops, from the first taste to the aftertaste five minutes down the road. Don’t drink any other beer after this one, taste will be seriously affected. This beer isn’t for everyone, but hopheads will have difficulty finding a hoppier beer. Leatherlips, indeed.

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Photo of carln26
4.11/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had this beer at the throw down, but did not rate it there. I paid closer attention to it this time, and was not disappointed. The IPA poured a dark copper. It had a nice, neat head and a beautiful lace. I’m not sure I’ve seen a beer do this before. I could tell how many sips of the beer I had taken, by the lace. It was almost like the rings on a tree. Amazing. The aroma is floral with a huge citrus bomb. The taste is a hop punch then the citrus. Very full flavored with a medium-heavy mouth feel. Very drinkable. The malt shows up late, but helps to balance it. Once of my favorite local IPAs.

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Photo of mikeys01
4.32/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served fom a growler provided courtesy of Unionmade. The Leatherlips poured into my glass a bright copper orange like a newly minted penny, buried beneath a foamy just barely beige head. This beer is bursting with citrus fruit and sharp pine aroma, and just a bare hint of malt sweetness. First sip scorches the tongue with ultraviolent hop bitterness, it takes many more sips to adjust my taste buds for a beer this hoppy. This beer is clearly the hophead's dream and makes other hopmonsters look like crying babies who just soiled themselves. Flavor has lots of pine/grapefruit as well as a very pronounced flavor that seems to me to be very much mango. Certainly a bit astringent but that's to be expected with this unbridled hopzilla of a beer. Body is a comfortable medium and drinkability is quite good once you've entered the Leatherlips alter-reality. Eventually I am able to penetrate the hop defenses to discern a nice biscuity malt flavor. Finish is bitter to the point that it sticks with you for hours to come, my taste buds have been bittered to submission. Cheers to Dann for a brilliantly bold creation, it's all I could have hopped for.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.47/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear, bright coppery/ crimson color, topped with a fine layer of beige suds, looks nice.
The instant my nose gets nearer the glass, I know I'm in for a treat!This is the stuff, fresh, piney, bold, citric, a flood of fruity flavors, but not too bitter. Floral, fragrant, and, aromatically, an instant favorite.
Impressive entrance on the palate, the brew grips and grabs all areas of the mouth and sends it's bittersweet flavor in every corner! Vibrant, flavorful, with a long, bitter finish.
There's just enough malt hanging in here, to make it magnificently drinkable.

Very, very tasty this Leatherlips, smooth and delicious. Fine people of Massachusetts, you are truly blessed to have some a lip-smackin' wonder of an IPA at your beck-and-call!

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Photo of francisweizen
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fresh from a growler: A dark red beer with a small off-white head that lasts and leaves nice lacing on my glass as well. The aromas are of fresh, green, herbal hops, and awesome spicy malts. The taste is a wonderful blend of spicy malts and fresh herbal hops. The finish and aftertaste are very bitter too. The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth and the drinkability is very, very good!

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Photo of Jason
4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the HHTD.

This baby is the runt of the litter, it might be small in stature but it packs a hop dropkick of bitterness for its size. Lots of bitterness to go around, with a sharp oily hop flavor. Peachy minty pine aroma. Solid head retention on a golden amber brew. Slight malt flavor comes though for a second.

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Photo of pbrian
4.45/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

1/2 gal growler. Filled to the freakin' brim less than a week from consuming.

Clear copper colored with a small, slowly-forming off white head. Distinctively sharp, piney aroma with hints of mints, citrus and sweetness. A full well-rounded bitterness is the main taste theme. Pine needles, grapefruits, peppermint, a little earthiness... were all the basic hop groups used in this one? Enough generic malty sweetness is there to not make this one-dimensional, but it certainly lives up to its namesake. Full bodied, good mouth texture, yet light enough to be extremly drinkable. Lovely.

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Photo of ColForbin
4.67/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I purchased a growler of Leatherlips IPA from The Tap on 7/23/04 and drank it two days later. I should note that my glassware for this tasting was sub-optimal - I was drinking from a plastic Harpoon pint glass from one of their festivals.

Leatherlips pours a golden-red color, is slightly cloudy, with a white head that fades to a lacing on top of the beer. The aroma is very hoppy - with pine notes dominating. This beer is a hop bomb - the taste is hops through and through, piney, spicey. Some toasted malt flavors do peek through, however, and provide a firm backbone for the hops to do their work. The beer has a nice dry finish with a great oily hoppy feeling left on the tongue.

This is a great IPA, and I would drink this all the time if I could.

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Leather Lips IPA from The Tap Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.91 out of 5 with 410 ratings