Saint Arnold Elissa IPA | Saint Arnold Brewing Company

very good
395 Reviews
Saint Arnold Elissa IPASaint Arnold Elissa IPA

Brewed by:
Saint Arnold Brewing Company
Texas, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TXHops on 05-14-2004

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 395 | Ratings: 1,019
Photo of match1112
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a bright orangish copper body with a fingers worth of sea foamy head quickly settles to a ring leaving plenty of lacing behind. the smell is mostly earthy pine with breads and citrus hiding in the background. taste is a good combination of pine and citrus, not too dry and bitter and not too sweet. good bready malt presence holds it together well. a medium body with good carbonation and an oily feel with a short dry finish are the most noticable traits. overall a fine ipa. thanks for the texas beers UHCougar12!

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Photo of Gosox8787
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz. bottle courtesy of Canadianghetto poured into a Karbach Brewing pint glass. This has been chilling in the refrigerator all day and is nice and cold, great for the recent heat wave.

Appearance: Bright copper orange in color with a cloudy white, two finger head the sticks nicely to the glass. Keeps a nice lacing around throughout.

Aroma: Some nice pine notes and a cracker note in there as well. Some caramel sticks out and gives a nice backing and sweetness as well.

Taste: Really bitter hops, lots of pine upfront. Some nice backing caramel and malt. There is a touch of a yeast note in there too.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied and nicely carbonated.

Overall, a nice bitter and refreshing IPA. It leans more toward the English IPA style than American. Pretty complex and easy to drink. Definitely enjoyable.

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Photo of OremLK
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass after sitting out of the fridge 10 minutes, 45-50ish degrees.

A: Clear golden amber with a two finger head and lots of medium bubbles. Clearly a pretty well-carbonated beer. Left lots of sticky lace on the side of my glass, belying its creamy finish.

S: Spices, pine, floral, citrus. Not as strong as some IPAs but definitely present and accounted for. Nice balance, you can smell everything in the beer right up front.

T: Reminds me of a slightly hoppier Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. It has a lot of the same characteristics; the bitter backbone and citrusy flavor with hints of other tastes glinting in the background. The malty sweetness underlaying it all and capping off the bitterness at the finish with a sweet but not cloying, aftertaste. The bitterness is more pronounced and tends in a slightly more piny direction, and this is not really a bad thing. It's a fairly mild IPA, at the edge of the category in bitterness, but it tastes great. If you're a Texan wanting something a bit stronger and a bit cheaper than SN Pale Ale this is it.

M: Pretty high carbonation, as expected. Creamier finish than my comparison beer, SN Pale Ale; that plus the higher ABV means it's not as sessionable.

O: Pretty high ABV in this one, 6.6%. I'm a skinny guy, so I've got a nice buzz going after a brief walk and retiring to a bottle of these. Overall I like this beer a lot and will drink many more of them.

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Photo of beergoot
3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice amber color. Medium sized carbonation bubbles leave a one-finger off-white head. I think of wet earth and a slight citrus notes when taking a whiff.

Taste leaves mild spice and light bread flavors. Somewhat bright finish, giving way to soft malt character and gentle hop bitterness.

Medium body with a tad excessive carbonation. Finishes cleanly.

Not an impressive IPA. Seems light on the hop characteristics, primarily in the aroma department. I'd say it's does a nice job of balancing malt and hop bitterness flavors as far as taste goes. I wouldn't turn down another one, but would probably opt for a different IPA if given a choice.

Got a six of this from Dolph1979 on my quest for a good sampling of Texas beers...

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Photo of Huhzubendah
2.73/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle from drabmuh. Thanks Matt.

The beer is clear and light orange hued with a small white head. The aroma consists of grain, biscuits, toasted bread. Very little hop presence here. The flavor confirms the absence of the hop profile one would expect in an IPA. Too grainy. Light to medium bodied with appropriate carbonation. Overall, I find this beer unimpressive. Not a repeat for me.

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Photo of CliffBrake
3.79/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to kjkinsey for the bottle and for introducing me to a new brewery. Cheers!

Crystal bright copper with a one finger head, good retention and moderate lacing.

The aroma is very light with a hint of herbal hops. Flavor is much more full, featuring herbal and spicy hops. A bit earthy, and a nice break from the big citrus/tropical hops so prevalent these days. From start to finish, there is a mouth filling bitterness that is assertive, but in no way overdone. Caramel malt is hiding in the background, just strong enough to hold up the spicy hoppiness.

The body is just a bit lighter than I am used to in an American IPA, but 6.6% ABV is probably below average for the style as well. Carbonation is just right.

Overall this is a nice IPA that stands out from many on the market these days. It reminds me of good old Ballantine IPA more than any other IPA I have had in recent times. Well worth a try with great drinkability.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.06/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a New Belgium globe glass. Beer is amber / orangish and completely clear with a white head, one finger, moderate to low carbonation, some lacing, looks fine.

Aroma is grainy and sweet, almost no hops. D'OH!

Beer is medium in body, mild bitterness on the backend, grainy, mildly dry finish, a little bit of an aftertaste, a very mediocre IPA, not my favorite and probably not a repeat but it is not horrible. I've had worse but this one is not very good.

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Photo of bmwats
3.08/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard pint.

A: Light golden hue. Heavy carbonation. Pours about a 1 finger, bubbly, white head. Disintegrates very quickly, leaving only pockets of foam on the surface. No real lacingg.

S: Piny with a slight hint of ammonia.

T: Full malty baked bread, with a biting piny hop. Well-balanced.

M: Really piny, and a bit of an earthy balance.

D: Sip and enjoy.

Atmosphere is okay. Golden hue, with a decent head, and lots of carbonation; but no lacing. Nose is simple, and has a bit of an off-putting smell of household cleaner. Flavor is a hearty with a hefty pine hop. Overall, this is a pretty decent quaff.

(May need to re-review. Judging from the others, I just had the one.... maybe it was skunky. Oh, well.)

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Photo of nandemo1
3.07/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured a bright clear gold with tons of bubbly carbonation. Had a full finger of white head. Leaves a lot of lacing.

Smell is very muted and I'm able to get just a little bit of earthiness and sweet malt. It is bitter, but I'm not getting much flavor at all outside of that.

Mouthfeel is spot on for a single IPA, crisp and refreshing, without a whole lt of stickiness.

Very drinkable but without any flavor so this is an average beer at best.

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Photo of jkanavel
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This brew pours a pale orange that is so uniform its kind of weird to look at.

The smell is nice and floral but very subdued.

This is a very run of the mill IPA. Quaffable, sessionable, but ultimately unremarkable.

Clean crisp carbonation, and a medium.

Overall I suppose I like this as an IPA, but really it would make a stronger entry as a Pale Ale.

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Photo of bastardface
3.05/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I have always liked and respected Saint Arnold's products. The Elissa isn't exactly my favorite though. The smell is good in that in is strong and a little overbearing. The taste is harsh and a little bitter. It's a strong taste and leaves a bit of an aftertaste. If you like dark, strong ales this IPA is for you. Just not for me.

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Photo of busterwhite
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice golden color with a thin head.

An earthy aroma with lots of malt and a little pine scent.

Big malt flavor with a decent balance from the hops. Decent bitterness with slightly sweet finish.

Mouthfeel is ok.

Overall this is a good beer. Not a typical IPA, it doesn't have big citrus, pine, floral aroma and taste. The Maris Otter malt is big in this beer but it is balanced well by the Cascade hops.

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Photo of gtermi
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours a coudly gold with a finger white head.

S: This is a very weird scent. It has some malt and some weird slight pepper smells.

T: The beer has a lot stronger malt than hops. It does have some hops, but not as much as it should. I also get some pepper tastes.

M: This is the best part of the beer. It is very smooth and easy to drink. It has a bit of carbonation, but I believe it ads to the beer.

O: This is a weird tasting IPA. I love Saint Arnolds and feel they make great beers, but this isnt their greatest. I was excited to try this, but man it let me down. Just doesnt have the hops I want from an IPA.

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Photo of ZenAgnostic
3.43/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottom stamped 085 11.

Appearance - Pours white one-finger head with decent to good stick and retention. Slightly hazy amber body.

Smell - Wet grass. Some hoppy spice. Slightly fruity maltiness.

Taste - Bitter. Otherwise thin on the flavor. Mild hop and malt presence. Somewhat metallic.

Mouthfeel - Astringent. Thin bodied. Kinda sticky.

Overall Drinkability - Decent if middle of the road for the style.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.08/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass from a 12 oz bottle.

A - Pours a nice slightly hazy light orange color with some golden notes. There is a slightly ecru thin head that recedes quickly.

S - The aroma has some biscuit malt and some nice grainy notes with some slight citrus hop notes. However, the hops are very light. I don't think this smells like an IPA at all. Don't get me wrong the aroma isn't bad but this needs more hops.

T & M - Starts off with some bready notes. Very crisp and clean grain notes. There is some slight pale caramel malt notes in the beginning. There is some nice slightly citrus hop notes but the hop presence is definitely lacking. There is some slight tangerine and a grassy herbal hop note but once again these are very light. The bready notes are nice and it has a slight English IPA vibe to it. I feel like this beer is not too bad but it is lacking. It needs more hop flavor. Mouthfeel is crisp and light as expected.

O - Pretty average beer. It isn't bad or anything like that but just very average and nothing to write home about. I will probably have more than one of these but just because I bought a six pack.

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Photo of NODAK
3.35/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma on this beer is pretty light for style...some pine is evident, along with some cereal graininess, but it's rather clean all around. Here's hoping the taste doesn't follow that tameness.

Taste has a fair, somewhat light, amount of bitterness of a pine quality straight away....not among the top IPA's by any stretch of the imagination, though....along with a sweet malt alongside it with a cereal grain quality to it as well as some lemon. A little stingy bitterness hangs around after the swallow, dancing on the sides of the tongue.

Not bad but not great. Very approachable, and could be a good entry beer for style. Drinkable but not outstanding.

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Photo of mikeg67
3.73/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at BJ’s in Houston. Pours orange with a white, short lived, foamy head and lively carbonation. Aroma is of orange fruit, citrus hops and caramel malt. Medium, crisp body. Citrusy hops, orange fruit and caramel fill the mouth. Short, bitter finish. Not very hoppy, easy drinking IPA.

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Photo of sweethome
2.83/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I tried this versus Real Ale Lost Gold IPA. Based on my score...I think you'll see I like Real Ale better. This is the lowest score I've given this brewery.

Pours a light yellow with a bit of haze.

A bit of honey on nose...not much more. Slightest hint of hops. Say what - IPA with a hint of hops?

Not much of a finish. This disappointed me.

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Photo of Rizalini
2.31/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Recieved in a trade from scm2787. Thanks for the bottle!

A - Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Deschutes tulip, it pours a clear golden orange color, with a minimal 1/2 finger off-white head.

S - Faint aromas of some malts, but no hops.

T/M - Unfortunatly, I'm not getting much of anything besides a slight bitterness at the end. Medium light mouthfeel.

O - I'm wondering if this one's not old? Without any identifiable markings to verify the date, I'm just taking a shot in there dark here. But for an AIPA this one falls flat...

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Photo of Absumaster
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up this beer in Houston during a business trip. It pours a light copper, orange color with a thin head.

The smell is hoppy and has lemony citrus and some raw hoppy, resiny notes. It is not as complex as other IPAs I had.

Taste is pretty bitter and a medium maltiness. The malt has a light dextrine taste and adds body to the beer./mouthfeel is pretty light for an IPA. The hops are lemony and a little grapefruit.

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Photo of RomaniIteDomum
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Travis for the chance to give this bottle a try.

Pours an attractive golden hue with a nice fluffy head that stays around for the life of the pint.

The smell is interesting. Dank, peppery, some resin, and herbs. It comes off slightly medicinal, but still good.

The taste follows. Lots of floral and herbal qualities. Pepper and more resin with a bit of light citrus and pine needles. I really enjoy the complexity here, but I do fear this bottle is a little less than fresh. A bit mroe kick was probably intended.

The feel is quite nice with a full body and creamy texture.

Overall, this was good. Next tiem I make it to Texas I will give this another try.

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Photo of waldoiverson
4.24/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into nonic

A: Quite clear and slightly darker than golden, fairly lazy carbonation, good but fast dissipating offwhite head of medium bubbles,

S: Very nice to smell an IPA that isn't just cascade. Strong pungent bitterness, a little grapey, very earthy and herbal

T: Lemon, strong yeast, gets quite sweet for a moment and then brings a clear biscuit flavor. Again, this is not your normal AIPA

M: Shockingly crisp for what the carbonation looks like in the glass, sweet in the middle with only a hint of resinous dryness at the end

O: this is absolutely a daily drinker. the flavor profile gives you hops, but it doesn't come across with your normal insane IBUs which, don't get me wrong, I like but need to moderate.

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Photo of Rutager
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Pours a lightly hazy golden-orange with a thin white head.

Smell. Toasty, sweet light malt and a little citrus fruits.

Taste. Light toasty grains, a little sweet with a lightly bitter, grassy-citus finish.

Mouthfeel. Medium-light body with medium carbonation.

Overall. Pretty light on the hops and flavour intensity for an IPA, but easy drinking and tastes great.

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Photo of ccrida
3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at the Richmond Arms, Elisa is clear gold with a very tight, creamy white head leaving scattered sheets of foam.

Smell is soft, fruity hops and esters, lime, a touch of resin.

Taste is pretty good, balanced, softer IPA for sure, English style with the apricot esters, but a firm bitterness on the bready aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is soft, slippery, and medium light bodied.

Drinkability is pretty good, a sessionable IPA for sure, but I personally prefer a more robustly hop flavored IPA. But it's smooth and well made.

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Photo of setexascustoms
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a pint glass.

A- Clear amber with a one finger head. Not much retention, but good lacing.

S- Floral, spicy hops. Nice malty undertones.

T- Smooth, good bitterness with some juicy orange citric flavors. Nice malt backbone, bitterness lingers in the finish.

M- On the fuller side of medium, wonderfully smooth and coats the mouth well. Almost some chewyness. This is a strong point of this beer for me.

O- Solid IPA, and it's brewed a stone's throw from here so I have to be a little bias ;)

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Saint Arnold Elissa IPA from Saint Arnold Brewing Company
3.8 out of 5 based on 1,019 ratings.
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