The Substance | Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.

159 Reviews
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The SubstanceThe Substance

Brewed by:
Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.
Maine, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our flagship; a brightly dank ale that threads many needles.

vailability: weekly production
ABV: 6.6% OG: 1.060
Hops: Falconer's Flight, Centennial, Apollo, Summit, Chinook
Malts: 2-row, flaked Wheat, Flaked oats, Flaked Barley

Added by Bowdoinbeerboy on 12-11-2013

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Reviews: 159 | Ratings: 1,313
Photo of daudelin2000
4.31/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed this beer at Robert's Maine Grille in Kittery, Maine. Pours a very hazy light gold color with a very nice white head. Smells of grapefruit, oranges, and lots of pine. Some dankness. Taste is very hop forward and very juicy. Lots of citrus flavor with lots of pine. The slight dankness comes through in the taste too. Medium mouthfeel with very little bitterness. This is a quality beer. I would say it's just a notch below the New England IPA royalty.

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Photo of MaineBeerDinner
3.63/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Doesn't lack substance that's for sure. Too dank, too heavy on the aftertaste to make me want to sit with this one. No head, haze for days, definite malt body but too hop heavy to balance the finish

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a tallboy into a shaker pint, the beer is a hazy, opaque, yellow-orange coloring, with a fluffy, bubbly, clingy, tall, white head. Aromas of bright orange rind, subtle grapefruit, lemon zest, and a subtle caramel backbone. Very juicy, with a balance nose of pine and dried grass. Flavors are very juicy and sweet forward, heavy on lemon zest and dried grass. Wow! Super juicy and insanely balanced. Solid grapefruit and subtle tropical fruit notes in there, too, with subtle pine tassel characteristics, as well. Smooth, light body that supports the overall juiciness perfectly. The aftertaste is more lemon heavy citrus and tropical sweetness, again with a subtle grassy and piney component. The dank and resinous pine notes build as you drink, too. Solid sweet and bitter linger past the dry, slightly acidic finish. Great beer!

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Photo of Fishersold
2.06/5  rDev -51.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This beer is all hype. When it first came out, it was amazing. They changed their yeast and now it tastes like plastic.

While the look is usually opaque, with inconsistencies, I've seen it look like Metamucil.

The smell is odd, hints of hops.

They market themselves well, good place for T-shirts.

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Photo of Korbynlehr
4.81/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Aroma=Dank with a the hop nose that we hopheads love. Pours with no real head to mention, but a hazy, almost golden honey look. The taste is one of sheer genius, BB hit the mark on the head. I love this beer. If I could get it in Kentucky that would be great!

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Photo of Boccu
4.16/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours golden and cloudy with a nice heady that stays until the end. . Nice citrus aroma. Has nice hops very smooth. Citrus with pine needle tones. Another great beer from bissell.

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Photo of Thedataman
4.88/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Was in Wells Maine over the 4th weekend and ran into Tullys beer emporium (lol) and asked the woman working if she had anything that she felt rivaled Heady Topper....she went into the back and laid a 4-pack of these on me...the 4-pack had a post it not on it...she was holding them for her...but said she would sell them to me...I am glad she did, they did not disappoint!

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

On tap at Bissell Brothers in Portland, ME.

This one pours a super hazed deep yellow/orange, with a small head, and lots of lacing.

This smells like like intense juicy hoppiness, dank marijuana, pine, orange, grapefruit, and mango.

This is really wonderful. It's definitely got an interesting hop character to it, that makes it really dank while also being super, super juicy- orange, grapefruit, and mango, with cut grass, pine, and marijuana. I don't get a whole lot of malt character.

This has a medium body to it, slightly creamy, with a good level of carbonation.

This is an absolutely great IPA and a near perfect example of the controversial NE IPA style.

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Photo of 11-52_4hops
3.98/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks like orange, smells like mangoes, tastes like grapefruit. Pretty nice but loses me at the end. Closing flavor is closer to grapefruit pith bitterness than hoppy bitterness -- lingers too long. The aftertaste here doesn't work for me. Reach for a Swish instead. Just my thoughts.

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Photo of Bmoylan1618
3.7/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Thick color is orange pink. Dank da dank dank nose. Sweet and piney. First flavor is a citrus Pine with a smooth pine flavor. Solid beer. Tongue lingers light but easily looked past.

 182 characters

Photo of Jacobob10
3.93/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

16 oz can.

Pale gold / light amber color and cloudy with one finger of head. Big orange and grapefruit aroma with pine. Brisk hoppiness in the flavor, leaving a bitter finish. Medium-light body and very smooth. A nice IPA, similar to a couple of Tree House beers I've had, but I still prefer a filtered IPA to unfiltered.

 322 characters

Photo of mickyge
4.65/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours cloudy orange and thin head. Smells piney and resiny and some sort of tropical fruit. Crisp mouthfeel slight bite and drys out at the finish. This is a really nicely balanced ale

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Photo of Gavage
4.32/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: pours a very cloudy pale golden yellow color with a 1/2" head that breaks apart immediately.

Smell: citrus tones are most noticeable.

Taste: caramel. some wheat or grassiness, lemon zest, orange, mango, and a moderate bitterness.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Crisp to start, less crisp at the finish. Citrusy aftertaste.

Overall: this is a real quaffable IPA that is refreshing on a hot summer day.

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Photo of crotharagain
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Gift from a trading budding. No date on the can, but likely fresh.
Poured into a Gray Sail pint glass.
L - Cloudy straw with minimal foam and lacing
S - Superb Treehouse type hoppy aroma, really promised a great taste.
T - Did not follow up to the aroma, but still very solid citrus with an herbal finish.
F - Solid and silky
Overall, a great summer IPA. Lowish ABV, nice after mowing the lawn.

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Photo of Beric
3.97/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Serving: On tap at Duck Fat in Portland, ME, in a Bissel Bros glass
Served: 3 June 2016

Appearance: Pours like your standard NE IPA juice bomb- very opaque, almost orange-juice like but maybe a little browner. Soft white head. Great lacing.

Smell: Pretty subdued compared to what I was expecting. Soft citrus and tropical fruit notes. Subtle sweetness.

Taste: Similar to the nose, except I think the more subdued flavors were really a positive here. I feel like this beer drank very smooth and was easy on the palate for being a 6.5% IPA. Went down fast and easy.

Mouthfeel: Medium-high body with high carbonation.

Overall: A very drinkable New England-style IPA and one that I could easy have a few of in a sitting from a flavor perspective. Not too boozy for a standard IPA, which was nice to see. I would definitely recommend this, but I find the overall BA rating a pinch too high, and the Bros' rating far too low.

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Photo of jmdrpi
4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can

Appears cloudy opaque pale yellow, good head and lacing. Nice well rounded hop aroma. Taste is hop dominated and low bitterness. Full mouthfeel

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Photo of Mateo2699
4.33/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pour is a typical NE style orange hazy hue, excellent lacing and retention.

Fresh orange peel and lemon zest in the aroma. Hints of mint, honey and nectarine. Aroma isn't as in your face as swish, still great though.

Taste follows nose pretty well, definitely getting even more citrus. Especially orange. Piney hop resin In the back end, combining with a subtle peppery malt.

Mouthfeel is medium carbonation, pretty easy drinker.

Definitely isn't on Swish level, still great.

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Photo of Brew_42
4.05/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

One of the best IPAs I've ever had.

Pours hazy orange/gold with a bright white head that leaves heavy lacing

Smells fruity and piney. Taste follows the nose with a ton of fruity punch to balance out the hoppiness

Crisp and refreshing.

Really solid IPA IMO but I'm not an IPA guy

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Photo of Nachojon
4.64/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very very solid beer. Haze, of the deep scale with hues of gold to yellow. Mellow but pleasant aroma. Bigger in the flavor department with smooth orange and melon up front to more of a bitter grapefruit finish.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
4.32/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Canned on date of either 3/22 or 3/23, I don't recall which.

Appearance - Pours cloudy and orange in color with a white, half finger head that dissipates quickly to reveal a mostly barren surface and a thin ring of suds along the edge of the glass. The lacing breaks off in thin sheets, with spots and lines found between.

Smell - Aroma consists of fresh orange, mint, pine, a hint of pineapple and mango.

Taste - Follows the nose. Fresh hoppy character that hits on notes of juicy orange with lesser pineapple and mango, pine, leafy character that hints of mint, and a touch of spice. Malts are mostly buried, with only a bit of generic bready sweetness peaking through. Stone fruit pit nuttiness hits mid-taste. The finish consists of lingering notes of citrus, leaf and that nutty pit character.

Mouthfeel - On the fuller side of medium with moderate carbonation. Smooth, nigh quaffable with a crisp, mostly dry finish.

Overall - Delicious brew. Very much in the same mold as Heady, only more citrus comes through here. Frankly, I might like this more than it's big brother, Swish.

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Photo of Beers-es
4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 16 oz undated can, pours a completely hazy, dark yellow-orange. An inch of off-white head leaves a solid curtain of lace. I love the way this looks.

Smell is kind of muted, honestly, but what I pick up is piney and tropical, with some hints of orange and dank. Malt sweetness makes an appearance later on.

Taste is fantastic, with a delicious combination of oranges and spicy pine. Some breadiness comes in halfway through, before finishing with a spicy, sticky resinous pine and fruit.

Feel is spot-on medium, with a nice body and a good combination of smoothness and lively carbonation.

Overall this is a great beer in the juice-bomb genre. Great stuff!

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Photo of kalosjakar
3.96/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hazy "piss" yellow with a small white head.

Aroma: grapefruit, orange, citrus, pineapple, tropical fruits

Taste: bitterness up front, coats the mouth with stickiness, a lot missing the in the flavor department imo. the aroma is killer though.

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Photo of Steve_Tkachuk
4.44/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This batch (3/1) is no doubt my favorite to date. Appearance is just the way I like an IPA, crazy hazy and a pale yellow orange. The nose on this batch is phenomenal! Tons of pine, pops of lemon, orange and nice dankness to it with a hint of biscuity sweetness hidden as well. The taste is rock solid ! Much like the nose, it's very piney with some nice fruitiness. The malts show up to the party towards the end of the party and as the beer warms a fair bit. The feel is just right. Very creamy and smoooooooth. It's so easy to knock these back it's silly. It coats the palate nicely, and finished with a nice clean dryness that wants your mouth beckoning for more.
Overall this batch of Substance is bomb diggity ! Well done BBB, this batch kicks ass !

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Photo of agreenman19
4.64/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L - pale cloudy satsuma orange. Watered down OJ. Course frothy head that quickly simmers down. Nice lacing!

S - sticky grapefruit rind tartness. Bready and spicy. Juicy orange and pineapple.

T - hoppy grapefruit and pine. Packs a forceful bitter punch. Zesty is a word that comes to mind. Lemon, lime. Has a pungent acidity. Sourdough. Juicy, but drying at the same time.

F - light and creamy. Has a soft forgiving mouthfeel, considering the hoppy assault that precedes it.

O - great beer! I prefer the juiciness of Swish, but this is a crisp, refreshing, twangy brew that craves attention.

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Photo of vitamin_g
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First Bissell Bros beer. Poured from a 16-oz can into a SN/Dogfish IPA glass.

Pours a hazy, coppery color with a nice white head that leaves good lacing. Smell is piney and slightly fruity. Taste is great - citrusy, smooth, a nice hoppiness. Goes down smoothly - very drinkable, with no discernable alcohol in the taste. Really enjoyed it and looking forward to the Swish.

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The Substance from Bissell Brothers Brewing Co.
4.27 out of 5 based on 1,313 ratings.
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