Banded Brewing Co.

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IPA - Imperial
Ranked #776
Ranked #3,568
4.13 | pDev: 6.3%
Banded Brewing Co.
Maine, United States
Notes: Double IPA
Monstrous hop flavors. Mellow citrus with waves of juicy tropical fruit. Dangerously balanced. Mosaic, Idaho 7 & Chinook hops.
Reviews: 62 | Ratings: 239 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of CTHomer
CTHomer from Connecticut

3.82/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

A: cloudy; medium gold in color; 1+ finger ivory head that receded to a wispy cap; nice lacing;

S: pineapple and grapefruit;

T: follows the nose with a little pine and vanilla added in ; mild bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation; moderately dry finish; smooth;

O: very nice; not special, but very nice;

Apr 27, 2020
Photo of Wubufatoto
Wubufatoto from New Hampshire

4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

We are living in the Golden Age of double IPAs. No matter where you live or where you shop, you can find at least one outstanding can or bottle. Some of the greats are national, like Dogfish 90 Minutes and Stone Ruination/EnjoyBys. We have and get fantastic regional DIPAs even here northern NH, like White Birches's and Moat's dankdankdank Call It a Day; on good days the biggest local beer store isn't sold out of the simply delightful Clown Shoes Space Cake from way down South in Haverhill, MA. In this genormous age of beers, this stands out. It has a non-intrusive highly palatable distinct flavor of its own. I'm not sure which hop or combination causes this, but when this enters your mouth, its hard not to smile. As the bartender at one of the local brewpubs described their also-good-but-nowhere-near-as-good-as this: It makes your mouth feel good. Try it if you can find it.

Dec 01, 2019
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Burniefloyd from Rhode Island

4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very tasty.
It has a slight citrus aroma.
Good hop taste up front that fades into a citrus flavor.
I like this and would not hesitate to buy and drink again!

May 12, 2019
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SierraNevallagash from Maine

4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pint can - dated 04/08/19 - poured into a large wine stem at 44F.

Pours an ultra milky, turbid, creamy banana creme yellow, with a finger of bone white head that soon settles to a bubbly film and lacey collar.

Nose: Very tropical. Very fruity. Very New England. It has a very general New England IPA nose. Guava, mango, pineapple, cantaloupe, papaya, maybe some kiwi. Fruity Mosaic notes, as well as some grassiness. There's a nice thread of pine, presumably from the Chinook, but nowhere near enough to say this smells piney. A real floral honey sweetness beneath it all. It's a juicy fruity New England nose. Smells soft.

Palate: The palate really sews together what the nose seems to be lacking. It's soft and subtle on the nose, but that first sip unleashes everything it has to offer. There is a firm, prominent sweetness, but it's that really clean neutral sweetness that you get from flaked oat. Not syrupy, honey, toffee, or caramel. Just sweetness. An explosion of textbook Mosaic notes follow quickly - lots of berries, melon, guava, and these wonderful floral and fresh green grassy notes. I'm not sure what Idaho 7 is contributing, but there is a fair bit of soft, unripe mango, lots of bitter grapefruit rind, and a little bit of black pepper. There is a good firm piney, resinous bitterness that builds towards the finish. The bitterness shares territory with citrus rind, but the pine note is certainly there enough for me to notice, and appreciate. The more,I get into this, the more pushed back the bitterness becomes, only showing up later and later into the finish, leaning more towards pine each time.

Mouthfeel/Body: At 8.7% ABV, there's really no hiding it...but they certainly tried. Naturally, this is quite soft, and gets super creamy with a slight chew. Flaked oats can make a beer nice and soft, but it's usually a thinner softness, and not quite the creamy milkshake you'll occasionally encounter. Soft, but unbelievably drinkable. I can't think of another IPA this big that drinks this easy. Effervescence is naturally very fine, and has to fight through some heft, but overall, it retains a nice fuzziness to offset the oaty softness.

Overall: This was a tricky one. I had thought I grabbed Veridian (the supposed West-Coast style brother of this), so,I was shocked when I saw the milky elixir fill the glass. Set my expectations off. On the nose, this is rather unassuming. It smells like an inoffensive, standard rate fruity NEIPA. It's flavour is where it really shows what it can do, and that's where it counts the most. They went for a unique, unpredictable hop combination, and I appreciate that so much. Not everything needs Citra. This is a wonderful display of Mosaic with some interplay with a unique less predictable hop, and a classic old school bittering hop. The result is a truly big, bold, boisterous New England Double IPA, with a firm piney bitterness, and some beautiful hop nuance. This is one to seek out if you're chasing hoppiness. Well crafted, and will hopefully stand the test of time. I will personally seek this out repeatedly in the future.

May 06, 2019
Photo of LarryV
LarryV from Massachusetts

3.94/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma of citrus - oranges, melons, a bit dank. Pours a lovely, hazy, brilliant ruddy yellow color with a soft, pillowy head. Taste follows suit, a hint of orange, melon, with a dank, pleasing bitterness. Canned 11 days ago on 4/08/19. Quite a pleasant beer whiches manages to bridge juicy and traditional flavors together nicely. Recommended.

Apr 20, 2019
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DBosco from Massachusetts

4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint, canned a month ago. Very hazy straw gold with a finger of head. Smell of pineapple and some fruity notes. Taste of pineapple, tropical fruits, with some bitterness. Feel is moderately carbonated but smooth and medium bodied, perhaps that would be from the flaked oats ingredient. Overall, this is very good - a little more bitter than I would prefer.

Mar 28, 2019
Photo of egrandfield
egrandfield from Massachusetts

4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

L: Cloudy honey amber
S: soft pine
T: Bitter, resinous
F: Bitting
O: A big beer, definitely different. Beer more for sipping and expanding the palate than for crushing. That said, I really liked this as an acquired taste.

Jan 12, 2019
Photo of puboflyons
puboflyons from New Hampshire

4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 16 oz. can stamped 02-01-2018.

It pours a ,ind of yellow-olive tone with a tremendous white puffy head.

Big aroma notes of floral, pine, forests and a m ore subtle breaded malt sweetness. But overall, it is very clean.

Smooth, medium body.

The taste highlights the pine, resiny hops with a pleasantly balanced sweetness under it all. Bitter end.

Mar 11, 2018
Photo of Tony210
Tony210 from New Jersey

4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours light golden straw color, a little hazy. Really nice hop aroma, citrusy with a little pine. Nice mellow flavor, big but well balanced, more citrus here. Nicely carbonated, crisp dry finish. Overall a very nice IPA, and the 8.6% abv is well hidden. Very drinkable.

16 oz can, canned 8/22/17
4.25 rating

Oct 30, 2017
Photo of pprichar
pprichar from Massachusetts

4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Most underrated beer in Maine.

Look: Classic hazy DIPA
Smell: Vanilla and Tropical Fruits
Taste: Classic Maine/NE IPA with Tropical Fruits with a hint of pine and a bit of pepper
Feel: Creamy but not TH/Trillium Level
Overall: For the price and it's ease to get this is a top beer that flies under most peoples radars.

Oct 09, 2017
Photo of scotorum
scotorum from Massachusetts

4.04/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4


Saw this highly rated BH double in a local store for the first time a week ago, but did not buy it until I saw it at a slightly better price in its home state of Maine last weekend. Canned 8/22/17.

Poured from the 16 oz. can into a Lawson's stemmed tulip.

a: Translucent dark gold with a half finger thick white head which receded to thin surface foam and surprising dense lacing considering the initial small head.

s; Citrus and pine resin with strength from a foot away.

t; More resin than citrus with a moderate hop bite and dry finish with a little lingering bitterness and throat burn.

m: Medium, good body and surprisingly heavy carbonation tingle.

o; Someone said this is the best DIPA you can buy without having to stand in line. It is very good, but not the NE juice bomb those can be. More refreshing West coast style, and as good as any of those.

Sep 06, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.74/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip, the appearance was a nice looking bronzed yellow color with a fair transparency about it. Some carbonation could be seen rising at a moderate pace to fill a finger’s worth of white foamy head that dissipated at an ever so nicely set pace. Mild stringy yet sliding lace. The aroma sets in on sweet pineapple arranging upon some sweet to danky onion evenly flowing in on sweet grassy tones and then accompanying some black pepper for a sly kick underneath. Light pine/resin even further underneath. The flavor yields to the sweetness ininitally but that spice, and dankiness seems to come a bit more forward as it warms. Everything seems to arrange tightly into the aftertaste and rolling into the finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a fair crisp sessionably spot on gliding feel on my tongue. Black pepper seems to sit way further back and not effecting much harshness on my tongue. Overall, damn nice DIPA well worthy of having again.

Jun 09, 2017
Photo of Jshbrown40
Jshbrown40 from Maine

3.84/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L - Typical hazy NE IPA, orange-yellow
S - sweet mellon some citrus and dank resin
T - goes in sweet followed by the piney resin and citrus. Fills the pallate nicely without overwhelming on any taste note.
F - medium carbonation, with a solid malt backbone that helps it drink very smoothly (dangerous consideringthe 8.7 ABV
O - this beer is the most over-looked, and under-rated of the Maine IPA scene. It's a fantastic beer, tastes great, it can be crushed as it drinks so smoothly, but invites on to drink it slowly to try and figure out the complex flavor notes. The malt back bone (the secret weapon) of this beer blends well with the mellon and citrus. Highly recomend giving this one a try.

Jun 01, 2017
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Monkey-D-Luffy from Massachusetts

4.71/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Purchased cold - Canned 04/27/2017 - Poured into an English pub glass.

L - Hazy straw color, beautiful fluffy 1 finger head on a mildly aggressive pour, thick sticky lacing as it goes down.

S - Cantaloupe, grapefruit, citrus with a hint of pine

T - Slightly sweet cantaloupe, followed by a twang of resinous pine that mellows into citrus bliss. Aftertaste is black pepper and pine.

F - Mouthfeel is light to medium with good carbonation and fullness.

O - It takes a lot to wow me these days, I live in Massachusetts and I'm quite spoiled by the ease of access to incredible brewers. Maine is absolutely bringing the fire on this one, I couldn't help myself but to have an "ahh" moment after each sip, and then kick myself for not buying the other 4 they had on the shelf. Absolutely would recommend to anyone looking for a fantastic NEIPA.

May 21, 2017
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GratefulBeerGuy from New Hampshire

4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16 oz tallboy can in a dimpled mug. Made with Domestic Barley malt, oats, Mosiac, Idaho 7 and Chinook hops, saco river water and yeast. Re review on 2/8/18 might have a different hop variety. *

Semi-hazy, Honey gold and amber hues. Rocky, sea foam clumpy white cloud style noggin coverage.

Pineapple, pine tree sap, mango, starfruit, spruce tips and lush leafy greens in the hop dominant aroma. Honey sweet malt plus a vodka like boozy heat thing. Sweet and tart fruits, mostly light tropical and citrus. Major tropical fruity hop aromatics. Well blended.

A rather mellow, light subtle honey sweet malt flows across the tastebuds, large chunks of hoppy flavor quickly takes over: Mango, starfruit, pineapple, kiwi and lemmon zest all roll in together from the vast array of hop. Summit, Mosiac, Chinook and Citra hops blend together to form a rather tropical, citric and earthy hop complexity. Slightly sour, slightly sweet with a subtle, but effective malty backbone that delivers a very decent balance with a very well-hidden 8.7 abv. Highly drinkable for a big, fat ipa.* The Idaho 7 hop is vety distinctive, with watery fruits and mellon flavor's pushing through.

A "New England style IPA". Heavy hops with lush, full, but still easy drinkability. Awesome mouthfeel and maybe slightly relaxed. Pretty full, crispy bite but lush and juicy , never really bitter or dry.

If you like multi fruity complexity in the hops along with unreal drinkability, this is your jam. Dig it.

May 17, 2017
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JamFuel from Sweden

4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the can into a Spiegelau IPA glass.

Semi hazy light orange color. The head is soft and thick, off white.

Huge smell, citrus, pine, a bit of hops and mango. Sets the scene nicely.

The taste is massive. A lot of hoppy bitterness right away, balanced by citrus and some floral notes, along with some stone fruit. Continues by throwing in a bunch of resiny pine, and going on forever.

Medium bodied, quite oily in texture. Nice level of carbonation.

Overall, a brilliant IPA. Huge smell, huge flavor, and great texture.

May 16, 2017
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Hoppy_Time from Maine

4.53/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a lightly hazed golden orange with a two finger foamy off white head. Great retention and nice lacing.

Smells of orange, grapefruit, pine, melons, apricot, and grass. Very earthy aroma overall but also fruity.

Tastes of pine, cantaloupe, apricot, and orange predominate. Lighter flavors of grapefruit, pepper, grass, and some floral/herbal tones. Nice grapefruit and pine bitterness.

Medium bodied, a little rough around the edges, good carbonation, some alcohol, semi-dry.

A tasty East-West IPA, bold pine and grapefruit bitterness with some of the hazy fruity hoppiness thrown in. One of my favorite locals.

May 10, 2017
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Lingenbrau from Oregon

4.42/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful clear golden yellow with a bubbly white head that stays as a thin blanket on top and laces like a sheet. Smells of tropical fruits blended with citrus and pine (Reminds me of Societe The Bachelor.). Taste follows with a pleasant a simple candied sweetness and lightly toasted bread. Feel is clean, crisp, bitter, bright and considerably easy to drink. Overall, this is a wonderful DIPA and would welcome any time. Cheers!

May 05, 2017
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smcolw from Massachusetts

3.73/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Moderate head but it leaves extensive lace on the glass. Hazy gold liquid.

Piney and citrusy in equal measure. I get some weediness in subsequent whiffs.

Brief, dry pale malt start. The strong hop is the story here. The finishing flavor is simply bitter with little subtlety. Full bodied with light carbonation. This beer doesn't land like a DIPA. I don't get the warmth of alcohol nor is the malt strong enough to provide any balance. The hop is near appropriate and borderline extreme.

Apr 29, 2017
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illpass78 from Maine

4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint on draft at TIQA in Portland.

Appearance: Semi-clear straw with a crown of white bubbles.

Aroma: Very hoppy. Fruity, hoppy IPA with notes of mango, kiwi, grapefruit and citrus. Tropical. Has a boozy kick.

Taste: Follows nose - fruity and hop-forward.

Mouthfeel: Deceptively drinkable at a rather noticeable ABV.

Overall: Really good big, hoppy IPA. Very similar to the Bineary DIPA they had out a couple years ago - I take it this is a workshopped version of that.

Apr 20, 2017
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TheManiacalOne from Rhode Island

3.87/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On-tap 4/3/2017 at Natty Greene’s Tavern in North Attleboro, MA, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a bright gold color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains fruity citrus, floral hops and caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of citrus and caramel followed by some peppery spice and a touch of alcohol. The hops presence is strong but not over-powering. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy and brings a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly spicy.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, good kick, decent representation of style, this is a decent 2IPA to drink for a while.

Apr 03, 2017
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tigg924 from Massachusetts

3.58/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap. Pours hazy, gold in color with 1/2 inch head. Taste is wet hops, pine, pale malt, and a touch of lime juice. Slightly bitter, heavy bodied, with high carbonation. Makes for a tasty and dry IPA. There are several others I prefer in the style, but this one is worth a try.

Mar 22, 2017
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digboy from New Hampshire

4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap at the brewery
Pours a yellowish gold hazy color.
Aroma is dank and citrusy.
Taste is hop forward with a medium sweet malt backbone.
Mouth feel is clean with a bitter that kicks in at the end
Great IPA. Best of the lot on tap tonight.

Feb 20, 2017
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Antg8989 from New Jersey

4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy medium gold. Aroma is citrus, pine, some earthiness and malt. Taste is more pine forward followed by earthy and citrusy notes with a dry-ish finish. Feel is good for the style. Average carbonation. Overall, at 8.7% the ABV is fairly well hidden. Nothing spectacular, but not a disappointment by any means.

Jan 28, 2017
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Rugg315 from Connecticut

4.38/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Nice gold haze leaning more to the amber side than yellow. Not able to see through it but not too thick that it reminds you of a milkshake. A LOT of melon on the nose. Real good taste to this finishes nicely very smooth with no bite still feeling the pine at the end. Feel is outstanding nice carbonation and a fullness that goes down well. With a market that is crowded with so many good NE DIPA this has uniqueness that stands out. Really pleased with this beer.

Jan 20, 2017
Daikaiju from Banded Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 239 ratings