DirtWolf | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
830 Reviews
no score
Send samples

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed using whole flower Chinook, Citra, Mosaic, and Simcoe hops.

Added by aengleman on 09-27-2013

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 830 | Ratings: 6,501
Photo of thlayli87
3.52/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The high level of craftsmanship really shines through with this beer. I just don't care for the flavor-it tastes like cat piss. I will say though that it is well balanced for a DIPA, much moreso than say Weyerbacher Double Simcoe (another beer that I get a strong cat piss flavor from). The beer has a nice fluffy head that lingers and lots of lacing. Very aromatic. I don't get any citrus or tropical flavors at all, it's just straight up cat piss for me. It's a fine beer and many will love this, just not for me.

 515 characters

Photo of magpieken
3.54/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 Fl Oz bottle. Enjoy by 29/10/2015. Opaque, pale gold colour with a generous, slightly off-white head, which thinned out but left some nice lacing. Floral aroma of grapefruit, pine, earthiness, honey and malt. Low to medium sweetness and similar bitterness. Medium / full body, very noticeable alcohol (boozy but without the burn), smooth, almost oily texture and some gentle bitterness in the finish. Nicely balanced and not as bitter as I was expecting, I consider this one to be decent without being exceptional. 7.

 520 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.56/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with appealing label art (primarily green) and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired earlier tonight as part of a 4 pack at me local HEB grocery and served into a Pinthouse Pizza conical pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its current 96 rating. Reviewed as an imperial IPA because the label identifies it as a double IPA. 8.70% ABV confirmed.

Served cold - straight from me fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a white head of one finger width. Nice creaminess and thickness. Good smooth consistency. Little lacing cling to the sides of the glass; I can get a bit when I tilt it but it's far from substantial. Head retention is average - about two minutes.

Body colour is a translucent quasitransparent yellow-gold of good vibrance. No yeast particles are visible. Appears well-carbonated.

Sm: Appealing hoppy bursts of pine, grapefruit, citrus, zest, grassiness, flowers, and nectar. Some hop oils as well. I get some honey, pale malts, and pilsner malts. Maybe a bit of caramalt. Pear fruit. The hops and malts seem well selected and well paired. I'm really looking forward to trying it.

No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

A clean, fresh, and appealing aroma of mild to moderate strength. The hoppy notes are very attractive and seem balanced - a feature missing in most imperial IPAs.

T: Has some lovely pine/evergreen, nectary, floral, and citrusy hop notes. Grapefruit with a bit of bitterness bite is the least balanced note of the bunch, but overall the hop profile plays well with the clean pale malt backbone - which is itself supplemented nicely by a bit of sweeter caramalt. The nectary notes are a standout for me. I love that the hops are largely well balanced, and the beer is never overtly too sweet or too bitter. While it's built with notable cohesion, it's not quite a gestalt flavour profile. Good complexity, decent subtlety. There is room for improvement.

Above average depth and intensity of flavour. Average duration of flavour.

There is some alcohol presence, if we're being fair - but it's not distracting. Indeed, it provides a pleasant warmth and prevents the beer from being too dangerous. No yeast character comes through, but the beer seems quite cleanly fermented, and I suspect an American IPA yeast was used. I don't find any off-notes.

Mf: Oily. Good body and thickness. Has a strong presence on the palate. A biteen overcarbonated. Sticky. Good smoothness and coarseness.

Not astringent, hot, boozy, gushed, harsh, chewy, or rough.

Dr: Pretty drinkable for its high ABV, but nowhere near as much as world class beers in the style. Overall, this is a damn solid offering from Victory and I look forward to killing my 4 pack. Well-priced stuff for the quality.

Low B

 2,912 characters

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.58/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Very slight chill haze on a solid gold body Head is creamy and white with OK retention. Leaves a small cap and chunky collar with some nice lacing.

Smell: Herbal and floral. Slightly earthy with some citrus in the back. Some juicy grapefruit. Malts are bready with some light sweetness. Some pine. Almost soapy on the back. Very slight caramelization. Warming pushes a sweet juicy citrus.

Taste: Decidedly more bitter than the nose. Lingering pine and a solid juicy grapefruit. Slightly tropical. Dirty and earthy with a solid herbal element. Some floral hops as well. Malt backbone runs on the lighter side with some cracker and a good bit of biscuit. slightly caramelized malt sweetness. Building bitterness as it warms. Juicy as well. Actually balanced, but not a huge surprise where Victory is involved. Pineapple creeps out eventually.

Mouthfeel: Mediumish body with a moderate carbonation. Slightly dry on the finish with a juicy sip.

Overall: Do a barrel roll.

Carries a slightly more tropical thing than normal for Victory, but definitely shares a similar hop profile with their other pale ales. Good, but I can see it dropping off hard after a few weeks.

 1,184 characters

Photo of Jacobob10
3.58/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Enjoy by Feb 14, 2014. Reviewed on Oct 14, 2013.

Appearance: Average, frothy, white head on top of a clear orange body. Fair amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell: Heavy on the hops. Overwhelming pine and grapefruit with some orange and peach. The malt is practically non-existent. Light soapy yeast. Noticeable alcohol, almost like medicine.

Taste: Medium- to full-bodied and thick. Heat from the alcohol is there for sure.

Mouthfeel: Soft carbonation, harsh bitter finish, long-lasting flavor.

Overall: Hop bomb. Not much complexity, no balance whatsoever, and very boozy. Just because it is a double IPA doesn't mean it can't have any malt presence. That being said, I could see this beer improving after aging it for a few months to a year. Not a bad beer by any means, just not the best example of the style. Almost tastes like a poor man's Lagunitas Sucks to me. If unabashed, reckless hops in beer is your thing, give it a shot. Otherwise, seek out another DIPA with a bit more balance.

 997 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.59/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle served in a Belgian Snifter.

Pours copper-amber; lightly hazed; small, semi-durable bone-colored head.

Aroma/Flavor: not too aggressive; about on par with Bells Hopslam on this dimension, and on overall hoppiness. Hops bring herbs and citrus to the pungent aroma, and fruit (orange-grapefruit), grass and pine with a touch of floral to the flavor. Malts are subtle but evident in the taste beyond their partial taming of the hop bitterness.

Feel: crisp, near medium body with a semi-dry finish. Not harsh, as one might expect in a 8.7% dbl IPA.

O: good sippin’ version of a double IPA.

 606 characters

Photo of mttaylor1066
3.59/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

If you're not a fan of the Mosaic hop, this isn't a beer for you. My ultimate test of quality is If I finish a beer and immediately thirst for another of the same... that's great beer.

I didn't finish the first bottle of Dirt Wolf. But I had another bottle the next day. It make take me some time to come around to this again, it's not a BAD beer... just not for me.

This hop profile is a departure for Victory, IMHO. If you're a fan of Hop Devil or Hop Wallop, you may have to look twice at the label. It just doesn't seem like a Victory beer.

 546 characters

Photo of corby112
3.59/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Draft at the Blue Monkey Tavern in Merchantville, NJ.

Pours a slightly cloudy, burnt orange color with golden yellow hues and a one finger, frothy white head that slowly settles into a lasting ring.  Nice retention with streaks of soapy lace left behind.

Dank, floral hop aroma with resinous oils, pine needle and grass along with a touch of citrus fruit, biscuit, crackery malt and booze.  After it warms, the citrus/tropical notes stand out a bit more with grapefruit and orange peel but the nose is still dominated by earthy hops and a strong fusel alcohol/ethanol presence.  

Medium body and slightly oily with a blast of dry, hoppy bitterness that lingers over the pale malt, sweet fruit and boozy heat into a dry finish.  Again, the flavor is dominated by bitter, earthier hops with hints of grass, dank buds, resinous oils, pine sap and spruce tip.  Subtle tropical/citrus sweetness but this opens as it warms.  Lots of grapefruit with some pineapple and blood orange.  Very boozy with strong heat and alcohol sweetness in the finish taking away from the hop flavors.  Pale malt backbone with biscuit and cracker flavor that doesn't interfere with the hop bitterness.  Decent but too boozy for my preference and the strong alcohol flavor takes away from the interesting hop character. Feels more like 10+% beer and most of the interesting flavor falls off mid-palate.

 1,388 characters

Photo of drmeto
3.6/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

poours a hazy golden-orange with a small,quickly dissipating,foamy,white head
-low to medium carbonation visible
-Follows the nose plus pine and sugar
-medium,lingering bitterniss for the style
-medium carbonation
-light to medium body
-faint alcohol coming on late
Very heavy on citrus fruits.Not much else, but good overall.

 371 characters

Photo of QuentinCall
3.6/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

According to the guidelines of the "IPA's as Nick Cave Recordings" system, DirtWolf simply never aspires to anything that could justify 'The Firstborn is Dead' or 'Let Love In' designations -- it just isn't a landmark for the style nor is it decade defining. The argument for a 'Kicking Against the Pricks' designation is a sound one, maybe even an altogether reasonable one (the large extent of its substance being already explored and the debate of preferences being, somewhat moreso than others, subjective). However, with its poignant aggressiveness and general lack of risks noted alongside its immediate (and, at times, deserved) acclaim, I'm going to go ahead, follow my heart, and give it a solid 'Murder Ballads'.

 722 characters

Photo of fscottkey
3.61/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: I was surprised that this beer was semi opaque. It reminds me very much of a Hefeweizen - a cloudy orange color.

S: The smell is all DIPA. Strong hops, floral and citrus smells. The predominant smell is tropical fruit.

T: The taste has a tropical fruit taste.

M: Less "bite" and dry feeling than a typical DIPA. This has a slightly smoother character.

O: The tropical fruit flavor faded as I continued drinking. There were more pronounced astringent flavors later.

 472 characters

Photo of gillagorilla
3.63/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Max's during BBW 2013 (from notes, 10/27/13).

A: LACING! Dirty blonde/Clear copper.

S: Piney citrus blend. Quite earthy.

T: Light hop flavor. A bit watery. Hoppy pine, but nothing that I would write home about.

M: Too smooth. No carbonation or prickly.

O: Not what I was expecting from all the word of mouth and rating, but I will give it another chance later. Good, but it lacks in mouthfeel and real body.

 426 characters

Photo of PrimScrewhead
3.65/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Standard light amber DIPA

S - Surprisingly not whole lot going on. It's hoppy but doesn't exactly fill the nostrils

T - Doesn't deviate too far from the DIPA playbook. Hoppy, citrusy, not too boozy with a dry finish.

M - Thinner than the average DIPA

It's not a bad DIPA and worth trying but get it on sale.
At $10-12 per 4 pack it should be as good or better than Dogfish 90 Min IPA and it's not.
At that price point, you can get a 6 pack of either Lagunitas Maximus or Southern Tier 2XIPA, which are much better DIPAs.

Victory should have kept Hop Wallop.

 570 characters

Photo of Glennlawless
3.65/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured into a 16 oz pint glass.

A - hazy orange slightly see through....one finger head. spotty lacing throughout.

S - Wow! jumped right out at me...sweet citruisy and juicy bomb! Im getting juicy mango,orange,peach and slightly some pine maybe. carmel malt a tiny bit too!

T - The taste of this beer caught me super off guard...VERY floral in the mouth after the swallow I get some pine and a little bit of fruit. some what earthy and grassy too. a little perfumey as well. Definitley not getting as much citrus as expected. and call me crazy but I feel like im getting a hint of fresh cilantro in like...the first three seconds of swirling it around...

M - the feel is excellent on this beer.well carbonated and a pretty medium mouthfeel. slightly creamy.

Overall....this beer confused the shit out of me. I got this huge burst of citrus in the nose, amazingly fragrant beer there is no argument there at all....but after the first sip I had to look to make sure it was the same beer...the nose on this was completely misleading( to me at least) don't get me wrong there are still notes of citrus while drinking..but the dominant flavors are pine and almost a cilantro - perfume type deal... very interesting ... this is an awesome beer to check out....and it is not bad by any means, more like some thing your not going to expect at all after smelling it.

 1,364 characters

Photo of maximum12
3.65/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single in a mixed six of IPAs since the house was almost devoid of hops. Can't have that. It's not...right.

Pour is liquid copper dripped into the glass with a relevant amount of carbonation imparted by ye beer gods. Nose brings me news of earthy pine cone, bit of citrus, moist grass thrown on the cone for good measure. Interesting. Doesn't fit my beer profiling.

DirtWolf does the route of subtle vs. in yo face. Citrus is the bouncer, but there's plenty of the earthiness to back it up. Aggressively damp, dank, which normally I don't like, but the citrus make a nice circle of life around it. A little peachy, indistinct & possibly extinct fruitiness in the middle. Alcohol snarls more than the ABV indicates. Bitterness plays peek-a-boo, but gets more insistent as the beer warms.

Not my normal wheelhouse for a IIPA, takes a turn down the pass less traveled, but the path is a lovely one. Good beer.

 930 characters

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.65/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a golden amber color with good clarity. There's about one fingers worth of white colored head. The texture is soft, the retention is decent, and good lacing is left behind.

S: Interesting. While there's a nice collection of dankness, weed, pine, and slight citrus; there's also a nice berry note in there. This does a good job of balancing out the dank qualities. Some suggestions of a malt backbone hide in the background as well. The nose doesn't quite blow me away, but it does do a good job of showcasing Mosaic hops.

T: While some piny bitterness opens it up, it's quickly overtaken by the berry notes in the middle. It finishes with a combination of earth, weed, and a touch of alcohol. I could do without the slight booziness, sadly, but at least it helps to conceal some of the generic bitterness. It's slightly malty throughout - enough to notice it without it overpowering everything.

M: It's body isn't too heavy or too watery, giving it a nice middle ground between being drinkable and being savorable. It's also pretty soft in carbonation and slightly sweet on the finish - the latter is kept in check nicely.

O: This is a really solid DIPA. My favorite? Not quite: the slight booziness is really the only thing keeping this from being elite. Still, I really like all of the berry flavors emanating from this. I can't decide if this is better than Hop Wallop or not, though - there's a definite resemblance, but I think I'd take the delicate grapefruit of Hop Wallop over the berry goodness of this, if only slightly.

 1,577 characters

Photo of teromous
3.66/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Slightly hazy gold-amber colored body with a lush fluffy white head. The head stays up well, fading to a thin layer only after about half the glass is consumed. Pretty good lacing on the glass. Lots of visible carbonation. It appears to be either unfiltered or bottle carbonated (or both?) because there is visible sediment in the bottle. I would not consider the clarity or presence of sediment to be a detractor in the score.

S: Right off the bat there is a good citrus aroma; tangerine comes through mostly, with a bit of grapefruit. It's a very good smelling beer. I would say it's a bit above average but not outstanding.

T: Good bitterness right off the bat. A bit of alcohol sweetness. I get a strong grapefruit bitterness without the citrus flavor. There isn't a whole lot of hop flavor, but I re-stress that it has a very strong bitterness. I would have liked to have more hop flavor to reinforce the beer. Some of the malt comes through but it's only noticeable during the first few sips, as it is quickly overshadowed by the hop bitterness that layers the tongue while drinking the beer.

M: The mouthfeel is dominantly bitter. The bitterness tends to stay in the mouth but isn't too harsh. It finishes nicely in the middle, not being too dry or too sweet. I think the carbonation is perfectly in-line with the beer.

O: Overall I liked the beer. I wouldn't say that it warrants an outstanding rating, but it was enjoyable. The overall drinking experience is pleasant enough that it would be something I could request in a bar or pick up on the way home without regretting, but it's not something I would go out of the way to seek. I do recommend it.

 1,666 characters

Photo of JrBuck10
3.67/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- somewhat translucent orange/yellow with a rather small head after a vigorous poor.

Smell- picking up hoppy and floral notes. The citra hops are prevalent. fruity and piney at the same time.

taste- the bitterness is def. there especially the after taste. surprisingly i dont like the bitterness profile in this beer and I think it takes away from the overall taste of the citra Hop, which you pick up more in the aroma. Weird since I love high IBU.

Overall- i didnt fall in love but wouldnt turn it down. I rather choose Hop Devil from Victory.

 559 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.68/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 11/10/2013 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI served in a tulip glass.

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

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

T: The taste starts out with an earthy hops bitterness followed by a mild caramel and citrus sweetness. The malt character is hearty but there isn’t much balance. The after-taste is slightly hoppy.

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

O: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, it’s a decent 2IPA but there are several others in the style that I would pick first.

 752 characters

Photo of daudelin2000
3.68/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear golden color with a decent white head. Definitely clearer than I'm used to for a double IPA. Smells like citrus, pine, and some bready caramel malts. The malt aroma is strong. Taste is very malty for an IPA. To me, the malts overwhelm the hops. There is some citrus and pine there from the hops, but it gets overshadowed by the caramel malt flavor. I had this on tap previously and didn't notice the malts as much. This review is from a bottle, so I'm thinking maybe next time I'll try on tap again. Nothing bad about this beer, but, for me, just too malty for the style.

 585 characters

Photo of lighthabit
3.68/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

super clear deep golden color, mild head dies down to a sticky bit around the edger. spotty but decent lacing. i am really surprised by how absolutely clear this is. not much in the nose, bit of hops, hint of grass. taste is mild for the style, good but could have more punch. hops are adding bitterness, but in a very pleasant way, touch of lemon is there. mouthfeel is smooth, touch of oil. wet. this feels as wet and it is clear. methinks a bottle would have a tad bit more presence than a growler.

 501 characters

Photo of ETCO2
3.68/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I would agree with other reviewers that this beer is for Victory an excellent step in the West Coast IPA direction. It is not a beer that holds up to the standards I desire of the few excellent west coast beers available on the east coast such as Firestone or Green Flash. The initial smell is not of grapefruit and the taste is not as hoppy and bitter as my very narrow palate desires. I can understand when a brewer does not want to go more extreme in order to sell more product. I think this is a nice compromise for a product that I would drink again but do not dream about while finishing another shift at work!

 616 characters

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

I do not like this style at all but, If I did I imagine this could be one of my favorites. Crisp, Dry, Citrus, Pine, Pine , Pine and oh yeah, lots and lots of bitter.

 167 characters

Photo of schoolboy
3.7/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This one is a little weird. It's a great big American style IPA that works, but the aroma is a little over the top and smells a little of ass. Not good.

This well made brew pours pretty, keeps a little head and is fairly clear. Nice looking. The aforementioned issue with the aroma is obvious from the first, but the taste does not have the same funkiness. The taste is great. The aftertaste reveals just a tad of that funky smell.

Overall, this is a failure - I would not refuse one but I will try to remember not to buy it - I really would want to avoid it with good food.

I had another bottle of this and also had it on tap at Melt (without food). I'll stick with my rating, but it was better.

 699 characters

Photo of breadwinner
3.71/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I just don't get Victory hoppy beer (with maybe the exception of Headwaters). I dig the idea of a scaled down malt bill to highlight the hops, but this thing is alcoholic hot, a little spicy, and just not pleasant at all. Fresh-ish bottle(s) too. I dunno. Neither Hop Ranch nor this does a thing for me.

 303 characters

DirtWolf from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.27 out of 5 based on 6,501 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!