The Substance
Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.

The SubstanceThe Substance
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Style:
IPA - New England
Ranked #235
ABV:
6.6%
Score:
96
Ranked #729
Avg:
4.32 | pDev: 7.64%
Reviews:
274
Ratings:
1,860
From:
Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.
 
Maine, United States
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  315
Gots
  543
SCORE
96
World-Class
The SubstanceThe Substance
Notes: Our flagship; a brightly dank ale that threads many needles.

Hops: Falconer's Flight, Centennial, Apollo, Summit, Chinook
Malts: 2-row, flaked Wheat, Flaked oats, Flaked Barley

OG: 1.060
Reviews: 274 | Ratings: 1,860 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of eagles22
eagles22 from Pennsylvania

4.67/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look typical hazy ipa
Smell- huge tropical fruits and I'm getting the orange creamsicle or maybe pink starburst but it smells amazing
Taste follows the nose huge tropical fruits and somewhat vanilla
Feel soft and luscious
This is one of the best NEIPAs

Apr 05, 2021
Photo of NiceTaps
NiceTaps from New Jersey

4.32/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 16 ounce can dated 2/22/21, poured in a nonic pint glass.

Opaque golden sunshine color with a 1f white cap that quickly fades to a film and leaves sticky web lacing.

Pleasant dank aroma, mild floral perfume, mix of tropical and stone fruits.

Black tea, floral and herbal. The fruits mix shows some cherry, a bit of lime citrus, and dark berries.

Medium bodied brew with a light side. The wheat and oats provide a nice chew to its juice. A little sweet juice finish.

On the border of a bit too juicy. Overall, that’s tolerable because it’s otherwise very good. Subtle aromatic blend is addictive.

Apr 04, 2021
Photo of Antg8989
Antg8989 from New Jersey

4.39/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque light gold. Aroma - pineapple, grapefruit, floral, pine, berry, spicy, grassy - many layers here. Taste is more on the grassy/spicy side/pine/mint/grapefruit. Medium-high carbonation. Overall, I really enjoyed the first 2. It’s a nice change-up and one of the first stand out IPAs I’ve had of 2021.

Mar 15, 2021
Photo of jonphisher
jonphisher from New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Smell is fruity but not in your face it is subtle and pleasant. Some berry, citrus, and sweeter pine. Can’t stop smelling it the aroma reminds me of a subtle softer heady topper, with maybe a tad mor fruit arom. I literally can’t stop sticking my nose to the can. Only other beer I do that this much with is heady topper.

Taste follows the nose and is also pleasantly subtle and well balanced. It really does a good job of letting every thing shine. First starts out with the fruit notes above but finishes with a lovely pleasant grassy and soft pine taste.

Mouthfeel is awesome for this beer, smooth light to medium body. Very soft but has a nice bitterness to it and finishes pleasantly dry.

Really good beer, it’s well balanced and has some nice pine to it which I love. This one is right in between the old and the new. Like one foot in the past and one foot in the present. I actually wouldn’t hesitate to buy this beer again. Very good.

Feb 06, 2021
Photo of brewme
brewme from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked-up a four-pack of cans at Bradford's in Plymouth for about fifteen dollars. My second brew from these guys. I was disappointed by this. Tasted a bit watered-down.

Jan 01, 2021
Photo of VoxRationis
VoxRationis from New York

4.37/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap in 16 oz (473 ml) conical pint glass at Growler's Beer Bistro in Tuckahoe, NY.
A: Pours an opaque, dark golden orange color with a one finger, egg shell yellow head, sudsy rim and cap retention, and some sticky rings of lacing.
S: Aromas of peach, caramel, lemon citrus, biscuit, and a pine note.
T: Semisweet. Fruit, caramel, and pine flavors blend with a strong element of orange zest. Solid bitterness.
M: Medium bodied with solid, perststent carbonation. Round and soft mouthfeel.
O: Nicely composed and executed. Good for drinking and relaxing.

Dec 19, 2020
Photo of Billolick
Billolick from New York

4.31/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16 ouncer with "12/1/20" stamped on the bottom.

Hazed up, typical looking NEIPA lofts a looser and lasting frothy 1/2 inch cap. Then leaves low sheeting and ample spotty lacing.

Ripe tropical fruit notes on the sniff.

Juicy, juicy juicy with ripe oranges, tangerines, melon, kiwi all joining the party. Quality take on the ever popular style...go get some.

Dec 16, 2020
Photo of dano213
dano213 from Pennsylvania

4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16oz can purchased from the fridge as a 4-pack for $18.99. Canned on 11/18/2020, so this is one day shy of 4 weeks old.

Look: Pours a nice hazy golden orange color. It looks like it has a hefty body for its size. There is a very thin white head and what looks to be nice lacing potential. Very tiny bubbles rising.

Smell: Lots of dank, earthy notes along with some green grassiness. I get a lot of papaya notes and some mango and honeydew melon notes also. Perhaps a faint berry note? The finish is all papaya and dank weed.

Taste: This is really tasty. While I wonder if I am drinking it a bit too cold, I am definitely picking up lots of flavor. Up front, it very much follows the nose with lots of papaya and some mango. The finish has a very soft, cool bitterness that initially brings a mild orange pithiness. This cool orange pith also gently lingers in the mouth. I tasted a cool honeydew melon note on the finish that transitioned to cool cucumber and/or watermelon, and that's really cool. There is the faintest bit of tanginess that lingers on the palate that is very pleasant and tasty. This beer is so well balanced and drinkable. Truly delicious. It almost comes of as an American Pale Ale to me more than a NEIPA. I don't have much to illuminate about the malts, not because they are not impressive but because it's hard for me to characterize with these hoppy beers. I would say that it's a doughy or biscuity malt with a bit of spiciness from the flaked wheat perhaps. The flaked oat addition gives this beer a nice soft mouthfeel.

Feel: Medium body and medium mouthfeel. Appropriately carbonated. I would say that it has a lighter mouthfeel compared to a lot of other NEIPAs, but it really works well for this beer.

Overall: I was excited to see Bissell Brothers distributed in my area. This beer is expressing a lot of interesting notes that I have not found in other beers. For example - cucumber and watermelon! Very cool. Glad that I am able to enjoy this fresh; there is a bit of hop protein sediment, yet it tastes very good and I get no chalkiness at all. This is another example of a hazy New England Style IPA that doesn't check all of the expected boxes. This beer is not juicy at all and it's not super soft and pillowy. Much of the flavor profile comes off more West Coast IPA to me than East Coast IPA, with the exception of the very low bitterness. I think that this is beer is very well made, and you could make this a session beer because it is so drinkable, has low bitterness, and is relatively low ABV at 6.6%.

Dec 16, 2020
Photo of Treyliff
Treyliff from West Virginia

4.37/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16oz can poured into a tulip

A- pours a hazy golden orange with a one-finger creamy white head that has good retention and leaves some lacing behind

S- zesty citrus, as well as tropical fruit aromas of mango, pineapple, papaya, even a hint of banana. Undertones of mint

T- dank tropical notes of mango, peach, passionfruit and pineapple up front, followed by juicy orange and zesty grapefruit. The finish gives a bit of grass with more citrus on a semi-dry linger

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that continues into a foamy crisp finish

O- super flavorful, dank and drinkable at under 7% abv, very good

Nov 25, 2020
Photo of Siriusfisherman
Siriusfisherman from Vermont

4.3/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

L: Hazy dark yellow with a nice head that dissipates leaving some good lacing.

S: Tart, fresh hop bag notes of pine, citrus, and dank herbs.

T: Big, firm bitterness that leads into resinous pine and citrus hop flavors. The malt flavor is modest with some graininess and bready notes.

F: Lush, creamy body, slightly sticky.

Overall: A really awesome NEIPA, not a fruit bomb like most. I can't help but feel that these guys are working with some less optimal hops after trying a few of their beers. The craftsmanship seems like it is top level but the hops seem to be letting them down a little.

Oct 06, 2020
Photo of BergBeer
BergBeer from Virginia

4.18/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16oz can into a spieglau glass

Look: Hazy pale peach juice with a thick off white head.

Smell: Guava, rotten pineapple, green mango, papaya, bitter citrus rind.

Taste: Exactly like the nose with some green grass notes and a lightly sweet honey cracker.

Feel: Juicy and mildly bitter. Clean with perfect carbonation for the style. Just the slightest hint of alcohol.

Overall: A great brew. Could easily be an everyday drinker. Pick it up if you see it.

Oct 02, 2020
Photo of ThisWangsChung
ThisWangsChung from Maryland

4.13/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

While not as hazy as a lot of other IPAs I've encountered, there is a nice turbidity to the golden color. The finger-high, white-colored head is long lasting and fluffy in its texture. The aroma features a nice elemental quality to the hops - meaning, it's not far off from literally grabbing a few hop cones, breaking them up with your fingers, and inhaling deeply. There are also undercurrents of grapefruit, melon, and pineapple. The malts do their job: they keep the dank hop notes in check, while offering a subtle sweetness. My only complaint? The aroma could be have more oomph. Where more oomph isn't needed is in the vibrant flavor profile. Fruity touches initially wash over the palate - grapefruit and pineapple spring to mind. A long, building dankness appears around the middle and explodes on the finish. As it leaves the palate, traces of crackery malt sweetness pop up. This is a nicely nuanced IPA that's bitter, but not overly so. It's also a crispy and dry-finishing IPA through-and-through - those expecting soft, thick, pillowy roundness may be slightly let down. The thickness is nearly perfect: it feels decently substantial on the palate, yet leaves it almost effortlessly. Carbonation is moderately high. I freaking love it! It captures the dank essence of a great IPA without being over-the-top bitter or harsh. I could crush these suckers all day, every day. Dare I call it Heady Topper-esque? Definitely!

Sep 30, 2020
Photo of grawp57
grawp57 from Pennsylvania

4.57/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A little disappointed on the pour. It was hazy (which I don't like) and the head was weak. But it had a nice citrusy smell, a very nice hoppy taste, and a not too bitter smooth feel. Overall, I can see why it is rated so highly; a very excellent drinking beer!

Sep 28, 2020
Photo of beerbully
beerbully from New Jersey

4.29/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L-straw colored.....hazy, murky......1 finger head....decent retention.......lacing is thick

S-Aroma is faint....floral hop dust.....some sweet fruit, peaches, mango, pineapple

T-Similar to the nose.....some floral hops......hints of tropical fruits.....slight bitter finish of rind and pine.....very balanced

F- Smooth.....perfectly carb....extremely balanced......soft, creamy

O- Extremely balanced brew from smell to taste to feel.....very drinkable.....well done

Sep 03, 2020
Photo of Beer_Maineiac
Beer_Maineiac from Maine

4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have to say that I’m guilty of overlooking this beer. Perhaps as it’s a flagship and always available, and I live locally, I paid more attention to Bissell’s other offerings, such as Swish. My mistake, as this is one fine beer. Great balance of resiny dank + piney goodness.

Aug 12, 2020
Photo of VTbrewfan
VTbrewfan from Massachusetts

4.46/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Really nice balance of hop bitterness and pine with some citrus in there as well. Nice hop oily mouthfeel that lingers on the palate. Excellent IPA that drinks bigger than it seems at 6.6% ABV. Enjoyable and refreshing. Good reason why this one is a flagship beer for Bissell Brothers and why it’s so popular. Really good introduction to their brews.

Jul 28, 2020
Photo of MonkeyboyATL
MonkeyboyATL from Georgia

4.56/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now available all the way down here in Georgia. Such a solid aromatic tasty IPA. Just as delicious as when I first tried it all those years ago on a visit to Portland.

Jul 24, 2020
Photo of Garanova
Garanova from Georgia

4.38/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Delicious. Great flavor. Not hoppy
Banana, grape, a little hop. Just right for a traditional brown ale or porter drinkier. Highly recommend this ipa when porters and browns aren’t available

Jun 21, 2020
Photo of JRed
JRed from New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Milky golden with white head on top. Aroma of grass, papaya, mango yogurt, pineapple, peaches and cream. Tastes of papaya, mango, pineapple, peaches, cream, pine, and dry bitterness towards the finish.

May 30, 2020
Photo of jpkand
jpkand from Virginia

4.68/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

All-day long with this one. Pours a bright hazy gold that's almost luminescent with a nice white head.

Orange juice and papaya on the nose. Subtle melon.

Taste comes in with grapefruit peel, nice bright citrus fruit, and apricot.

Borderline full body. Excellent crisp and clean piney/ grapefruit finish

May 25, 2020
Photo of BucannonXC5
BucannonXC5 from California

4.09/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Type: 16-oz. can
Reviewed as: New England IPA
Glass: Pure Project 16-oz. brandy snifter glass
Price: $4.99
From: Windmill Farms in Del Cerro (San Diego), Calif.
Purchased: April 30, 2020
Consumed: April 30, 2020
Misc.: Canned on March 27, 2020

Absolutely psyched to see Bissell cans in San Diego. Had known about these guys, then saw Hamilton’s got some kegs and went out there on Super Bowl Sunday to have Swish, giving it a 4.49. This one was apparently their flagship. Mentioned hops online were Apollo, Centennial, Chinook, Falconer’s Flight and Simcoe. Damn, that’s a lot of hops and a few I’m not familiar with (Apollo and Falconer’s Flight - it's been a long time). But a 4.32 on Beer Advocate and 4.16 on Untappd can’t be wrong.

Poured a pale-to-medium yellow hazy color with 3-to-4 fingers of frothy-to-rocky white head. Could see some bubbles slowly creeping along the sides of the glass. Almost perfect uneven foamy lacing. Perfect foamy retention. Just an awesome looking beer. (Overall - 5.00)

Smelled grapefruit, pineapple, tropical Hawaiian fruit punch, passion fruit, papaya, apricot, melon, orange juice, lemon zest, woody pine resin, some Chinook and wheaty malt. A little better out of the can with grapefruit, pineapple and lemon leading the way. (Smell - 4.00)

Tasted close to as good as the nose. In order got bitter grapefruit rind, pineapple, lemon zest, woody Chinook, pine, resin, bitter aspirin, passion fruit, tropical Hawaiian fruit punch, papaya, Simcoe, black pepper, dry Centennial, lime, apricot and Fruit Loops. (Taste - 4.00)

Medium body. Creamy texture. Average carbonation. Long, dry finish. (Feel - 4.25)

I was back and forth on a few categories, but I really liked this beer. Kind of fruity, but bitter IPA. Outstanding overall. (Overall - 4.00)

4.09 | 91 | A-

May 21, 2020
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer from Georgia

4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Really, really solid beer. Huge, deep flavors and a nice backbone of malt give it a substantial mouthfeel and an almost chewy aspect. Very satisfying, with juicy hops and an almost bitter toffee note running throughout. Quite enjoyable.

May 08, 2020
Photo of Humanusfermentum
Humanusfermentum from Virginia

4.22/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Gorgeous, orange juice pour with a two-finger, frothy white head that is both soapy and creamy (yeah, yeah...). Tropical nose that's pretty sweet indicative. But, psych...flavor profile is a little more complex. Orange and subtle "tropical" notes hold steady in the background, but there is plenty of hop play, some earhiness, a unique malt presence that is a constant culprit in the hop expression. Indeed, that is the word: expressive. Not every sip was the same. The feel was pretty consistent: smooth and a little creamy. Personal taste preferences aside, the quality is undeniable.

Apr 28, 2020
Photo of HorseheadsHophead
HorseheadsHophead from New York

4.65/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Opaque, glowing golden orange in color with a fluffy white head. Insane retention and lacing.

Smells of muted orange puree, orange oils, a hint of pine needle and mango.

Tastes like essence of orange. Tart, juicy and oily. Orange pith and pulp as well as juice. Underlying hints of mango and white peach. A bit of honeydew melon and yellow grapefruit. Soft fragrant pine needles. A bit of creamy oats. Clean finish, not really bitter at all but the oily essence of orange lingers.

Fairly high carbonation for the style, smooth and silky-soft, feels creamy on the palate but also flies off fast. Clean and crisp for the style with a bit of lingering resin.

Mar 19, 2020
Photo of djames
djames from Pennsylvania

4.09/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very good beer!! Not a 96 imo, but very good. I would not say that there’s something in it that shouldn't be. I would say that there’s something that’s not in it that should be, if you know what I mean.

Mar 07, 2020
The Substance from Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 1860 ratings