Southern Tier Brewing Company

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American Pale Ale (APA)
4.07 | pDev: 11.06%
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Notes: Imperial pale ale
Reviews: 425 | Ratings: 524 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of barczar
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Another 2011 that got away from me in the cellar, figured I'd open it at 5 years. Rating set to current average.

Aroma is caramelly, with notes of toffee and dates. There's a touch of sherry oxidation.

Flavor is lightly vegetal throughout. Fairly sweet, with a resiny, fairly bitter, dry finish. There's a hint of citrus that lingers. Not the malt bomb or oxidized mess I anticipated.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.36/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Chunky haze in a glowing yellow beer. Hit the grassy summertime lemonade notes in the aroma. Almost Sorachi like hop aromas. Undated bottle not on me or the shop. . .

Taste did smack with hops and alcohol. Biscuity malt, toasted, bitter hops. Wish there was more flavor to the hopping beyond that grassy lemon tree vibe.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.1/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

"The simplicity of Hoppe tests the skill and ability of the brewer to create something truly majestic. We craft this much like a sculptor who uses only a hammer and chisel to shape stone into a masterpiece. Hoppe is spawned of these few essentials: barley, wheat, hops, yeast and water. This limited palette is an exercise in minimalism, with refined elements that are deliberately selected. This simple combination creates a golden shimmering brew infused with delicate aromas. The artful nature of this beer is exposed with the first taste. As the malt and hops create a composition of flavors, an elegant finish leaves an impression that your tastes will not soon forget. Don't be deceived by the innocence of Hoppe. Please enjoy in moderation." Brewed in the style of an Imperial Pale Ale. In retirement for quite some time, this has become a big craft fan favorite and one of Southern Tier's most talked-about discontinued beers.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a Southern Tier snifter. Served above 50º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Hoppe pours a whipped cream head of a golden-white consistency over a mildly hazy medium amber body. Carbonation is small and relaxed. Retention is above average, leaving light streaked lacing. 3.75

(Smell) Fruit hop aromas against a very potent grainy malt background. Aromas of biscuit, tannins and ethanol gain with the aroma. Aromatically, it's past its prime. 3

(Taste) Some herbaceous hop flavor prevails, but stands aside nothing enjoyable. Finishes with a peppery flat hop finish aside a grainy, faded malt body. Very harsh flavors on account of age, much like in the aroma. 3

(Mouthfeel) Mildly dry, slightly slick. Carbonation adds some froth and light crispness. Body is medium for the style, medium overall. Alcohol presence is high in its current status. 3

(Overall) I wouldn't buy any old bottles of this beer no matter what the price is. While Hoppe is regarded as an excellent beer by Southern Tier, there's not enough substance to keep it drinkable for long beyond fresh. I hope that Southern Tier pulls this beer out of retirement, perhaps to repackage in 4 packs. I hope to get the chance to re-review this beer one day soon. 3.25

Southern Tier Brewing Company's
Imperial Hoppe (Extra Pale Ale)

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Photo of MarkJBurch
4.59/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Freshness date has worn off of the bottle. Found this one sitting on the back of a shelf with a nice layer of dust. I would guess it is at least a year old. Pouring into a Southern Tier fluted glass. Nice one inch head that fell relatively quickly, left behind a splotchy glimmering white lace. This beer is very light orange, golden, amber color that almost appears to glow.

The smell is terrific. I am picking up a subtle fruitiness, pear maybe, very slight banana, apricot. Delightful. This smells very fresh, although I am quite sure it is not. The smell is almost of a Belgian pale ale, I am curious as to what yeast was used.

First sip, delicious. More to come. Okay, this is very well balanced. A little bitter towards the end. Very delicate. Light biscuit undertone, wheat, and very subtle fruit. The alcohol is almost completely disguised.

This beer tickles the tongue, plays with it, very smooth but every now and then I feel a slight bite from the carbonation.

Very refined, an exercise is minimalism as stated on the bottle. I am extremely pleased with this beer. I wish I could have tried it fresh, but will certainly return to the bottle shop from which I purchased it, in hopes of finding another dust laden gem.

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Photo of daledeee
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 22 oz bottle.

Poured into my goblet. Got a nice rusty gold color with white head and decent lacing.

Nose is malt and apricot.

Taste is rather mellow compared to what else I have been drinking lately, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. I found this one to be leaning a little toward the tropical with the hints of apricot, grass and plenty of malt.

Mouth feel is quite good with creaminess. Overall, not alcoholic, great fresh tasting beer and quite drinkable.

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Photo of Momar42
3.43/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Delirium tulip glass.

A - Cloudy, medium orange color. Very little head, not sure if its due to the age of the bottle or the actual beer itself. What little head that did form disappears rapidly with no lacing.

S - Very faint hops, mild citrus aroma, nice smell but very slight overall. Was looking for something more.

T - Quite sweet up front, midway through the hops kick in, but very subtly. Finishes smooth with a very faint bitterness. Overall taste is sweet, atypical for most IIPAs.

M - Very smooth mouthfeel due to the sweetness. It coats nicely and is pleasant.

O - Overall a pretty decent, easily drinkable (especially for the ABV) IIPA. Far less bitterness than the average IIPA with a much higher sweetness as well. I found myself enjoying it in spite of the slight disappointment in bitterness. Strangely I found myself drawing comparisons to Delirium Tremens as it warmed up. If you can find it, give it a try. If you are looking for bitterness, give it a pass.

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Photo of Jimmys
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

bomber into tulip. no bottled on date found.

A: hazy yellow body with a bubbly off-white head on top. retention is more of a rim, but the lacing

S: sort of green tea-like aroma. fruity. mangos. cantaloupe. good aromas, but nothing is really jumping out at me. more nuances than anything.

T: cotton candy. a little minty. the malt is simple, but definitely evident towards the finish. the flavor leaves a lingering bubblegum on the palate.

M: slightly below moderate carbonation on a medium/full body.

D: interesting take on a DIPA. a lot of pale malt, touch of what, and just 2 hop varieties make for a pretty simplistic brew. definitely drinkable, but not my favorite from southern tier.

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Photo of zaphodchak
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fluff white head and pale golden body.

Smells sweet, like caramel-honey.

Sweet, honeyed and with a good, herbal and faintly spicy. Hoppy finish, but often sweet and well balanced, though bold in terms of sweetness and hops.

Mouthfeel nails it, nice and smooth..

Surprisingly sweet, and if you like that, you're golden. I did.

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Photo of jeffmart22
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy golden orange color with a one finger white head that dissipates. Light lacing on the glass. Just a little alcohol clinging to the glass.

A - Heavy, pungent hop aroma. Smells very astringent . I can pick up some citrus aromas like orange and lemon. Slight malt sweetness and alcohol on the nose.

T - Nice bitterness. Drinks like a DIPA. Bitter from start to finish. Hints of sweet malt and tart citrus. Alcohol is warming but hard to detect. The flavor duration is long and it finishes dry.

M- Medium in body. Slightly resinous. Very astringent.

O - Very nice. I will drink again.

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Photo of FattyJLE
4.26/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

S – Pine, citrus and tropical fruits, lemon zest. Candy malts emerge with warmth.

A – Absolutely crystal clear, gold with a 2-finger cream-colored, fluffy head. Sticky lacing coats the glass. Streams of effervescence.

T – Piney, spicy, resinous hop flavor right from the start. A moderate bitterness soon gives way to sugary malts. Piney with hints of tropical fruit hop flavor emerge in the middle. A warming from the alcohol is present but just enough to be perceived. Finishes relatively sweet with a bitterness that lingers only for an instant.

M – Medium carbonation is just right. Medium mouthfeel. A slight warming of alcohol.

O – An outstanding beer. Impressive hop bitterness very well balanced by an equally hefty malt backbone and flavorful hop profile. This beer boasts a relatively stout 8% abv yet is still incredibly drinkable. I’m glad I enjoyed this in a bomber because 12 oz. would not have been enough. Will definitely have again and highly recommend.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.82/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured clear and gold into my snifter with a nice 1-finger head. Good retention. Interesting nose. It's fairly sweet and reminds me of a German Riesling with just a hint of orange peel.

Nice flavor. Slight (very slight) taste of alcohol muted by predominantly sweet flavors of honey, fruit juice, marmalade and bread and butter. The sweet, bready flavors are nicely balanced by hops, but the hops are far from massive and assertive and merely lend a lemony hint to the breadiness. Finish is soft and subtle, not really dry at all (pity). Mouthfeel is firm and slightly creamy.

This beer has a very interesting taste, but it's a bit too sweet for my palate to revisit more than occasionally. Still, it's a very good beer and I may try it again in the future just to see if my impressions of it are any different.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
3.66/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 2" light yellow head. Clear golden yellow body. Appearance-wise it's a lovely beer.

I get very little smell from my sample, even after it warmed, but yes there's some hops coming through.

The taste is really very sweet. Fruity hops dominate. It doesn't match the strength I'd expect for something called a double IPA though. Medium weight body. Fairly long finish and it leaves a filling satisfaction in the belly.

A good beer. I'm not sure it's strong enough in hops, body, or alcohol to truly be an "Imperial".

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Photo of Nugganooch
3.78/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 10/13/11
*22oz to pint glass

A: Hoppe pours a clear golden straw colored pale ale with a great big khaki head of fluffy stuff. Nice retention. Leaves some real curtains of lace down the glass.

S: Smells real piney with a little bit of fresh hop catty spice. Pick up some faint pale malt aromas.

T: This is actually quite juicy with hops. Fruity mangoes and resinous pine. Touch of spice. Has a very tantalizing bitterness that peppers the palate. Much lighter malt components but still gives a nice sugary cracker base. Finishes a little sweeter actually. Alcohol flavors present.

M: Lighter bodied ale with a bit of creaminess and good carbonation. Slight lingering mouthcoat. Crisp on the finish.

D: It’s an Imperial Extra Pale Ale! As much as that makes me laugh it actually starts to make sense as you sip. Has nice drinkability and a bit more to my liking with a limited caramel malt presence and solid dosing of the hops.

This one still finishes a touch on the sweeter side. Would have liked a little bit dryer lift at the end but all in all a solid performance. Would drink again.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle - $7.99 at Uncle Jack's Spirits in Canton, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazed, orange-yellow body with a inch-plus head of white foam. Decent coating of sticky lace on the way down.

Smell: A simple, soft maltiness in the nose hinting at sliced white bread and biscuits with a small, small hint of caramelized sugars. Floral, zesty, citrusy, grassy hops; goodly aromatic, I must say and quite inviting.

Taste: Sugar encrusted, lightly bready, biscuity malts with a little tickle of wheat-like tanginess. Sweetness is eventually kicked aside as the resinous, grassy, fruity hops roll in. Tangerine and grapefruit citrus elements with an approved juiciness to it. Medium-high bitterness. The prodigal sweetness returns. Drying, bitterish finish with some lingering fruit juice flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: A nice brew (a pleasant surprise, as I wasn't really expecting much from it). It's got a good blend of sweetness, bitterness, fruitiness, and while bigger, yes, I don't ever find it to be maddeningly heavy and clumsy or grotesquely bitter.

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Photo of dansmcd
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear, deep golden apricot hue. Head is frothy and leaves a spattering of sticky lace.

S - Juicy citric hops, pear and mango. Sweet vanilla in the malt profile.

T - Upfront hit of tropical fruit hops, pear, mango and pineapple. Sweet malt (raisin toast?) follows the nose.

M - Syrupy mouthful, moderate carbonation, sweet finish.

O - Not as bitter as expected. Quite an elegant IPA really. The hops are matched well with the rich malt. Very drinkable for an 8% abv.

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Photo of Beer4Baltimore
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - faintly hazy light orange color with a one finger head that leaves some lacing.
S - a citrus hoppiness clearly comes through a malty background.
T - sweet malty base with some muted hops. Yeasty heaviness/breadiness is quite evident in every mouthfull.
M - a bit syrupy with moderate carbonation.
Not quite what I expected but none the less still a good beer.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden-orange color with a frothy finger of slightly off-white head that lingers around for quite some time. The head eventually fades leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of strong sweetness from some caramel malts and the residual sugars, some potent hops, and a bit of breadiness and booze in the background.

T - Starts off with some big rich sweetness from the residual sugars and the rich caramel malt. Right behind is some citrus/piney hops and a touch of bitterness. Through the middle, the bitterness grows quite a bit and the harshness of the sweetness fades. There is a bit of bready flavor and a touch of booze that come through as well. The finish is a mix of hops, rich sweetness, and some booze that linger.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and quite syrupy, but still feels crisp and not too heavy.

D - Very drinkable. Through the booze and residual sugars do come through, this is still a very drinkable beer. The hops and the richness of the sugars are pretty well balanced and do seem to work well together in this case.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden amber translucent body poured easily to a half inch head, which is eggshell white and foamy. Ultimately dissipates to a ring and cap, leaving some sticky lacing on the glass.

Smells malty sweet with some hops, but the malt sugar really dominates.

First taste impression is sweet bready malt, and pretty bitter, with a little hop burn. The hops are lemon/citrus. This is tasting more in the style of DFH 120 minute IPA with a big sweet malt backbone. Alcohol seems a bit strong for 8%. The tastes don't really come together; straw, sugar, and bitterness alternate, giving this an undecided nature. Has a bitter, peppery finish that makes you want to take another sip to get back to the sweetness, then the cycle starts again.

Body is medium--it feels much thicker than the body looks. Carbonation is sufficient to give this a slight creaminess on the palate.

I have to admit I've had this in my cellar for a year (due to neglect, not by intention), and the hop freshness may have suffered. That may have precipitated a bit of a cardboard aspect to the malt as well. But this beer just seems to lack some integration, although I would be happy to have a pint of this most anytime.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bright yellow beer that looks thick and hazy. This is not a fizzy yellow beer. Totally unexpected lemon and grass aroma, hops were not upfront. Began to question the age of this undated brew, have had some excellent ST stuff (prolly my fave East Coast brewery) and have had some obviously passed their prime stuff.

Taste comes back around to the standard ST highly hopped, high abv beer thing. Still, lemon and grass share a large part of the stage with this one. Kind of a beer that is all over the place style wise. Some pale aspect, some dipa aspect, some berliner aspect even. Sizeable bitterness. Somewhat of a medicinal quality the more you drink it.

Closest thing I can compare it to is DFH's hellhound. I like hellhound a little bit more. Bit this one is still worthy.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.53/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is fairly strong and hoppy with a grassy overtone and a faint fruity hint. It pours a clear amber with a very thick and fluffy white head. Richly hoppy flavor has a bit of a grapefruit tang and touches of both bitterness and sweetness. Edgy, tingly texture leaves a pleasant hoppy finish.

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Photo of BlackWednesday
3.7/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle purchased at Oak Tree. Pours a clear golden amber with nice effervescence rising from the center of my Nostradamus glass and nice pillowy white head that leaves some good lacing as I sip this one. Aroma of flowers, syrup and citrus. Palate is slightly on the thin side with average carbonation. Mostly hop flavor that is off balanced from the malts and it’s not a good hop flavor but hey who forgot to close the fridge door for the last several weeks?? I loved Unearthly but didn’t care for this and since Gemini is a combo of the two should I just save myself some time and average the two scores together myself??

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Photo of Rifugium
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at ?

Poured a slightly hazy golden with a finger of frothy white head that laced well. Light citrusy hops in the aroma, piney, and touches of pineapple. Similar in the taste. Citrusy hops, but not enough to qualify it as an IPA...it's definitely an APA, as it is described on the bottle. Piney, grassy, with tones of tropical fruits--pineapple and mango--and a sweet sugary malt background. Medium mouthfeel. Sits somewhere on the border of a dubbel and a strong pale ale. It was good, and pretty easily drinkable.

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Photo of BurpingtonDC
4.09/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - One of the most Yellow or Golden ales I've ever seen I think. It has a rich golden amber color and a two-fingered yellowish white foamy head that, for me, lasted an eternity.

S - Very delicate with light scents of pine, fruit, and sweet malt.

T - Malty sweetness, big breadiness, and a strong hop presence conspire to create an interesting ale of unique character. The sweetness of the malt hits you right away, but then a wash of bitter hoppy goodness consumes your palate and lingers on the tongue. 8% alcohol gives it a slight boozy quality.

M -Delicate carbonation, bready flavor, and a sturdy malt presence give this beer considerable body. both intensely sweet, the bitter, but it doesn't cloy to the tongue as it might.

O - I think its uniqueness added to the experience, but I really liked this Imperial Pale Ale, whatever that is. From its rich color to its abundance of hops, this brew pushed most of my buttons. I haven't been disappointed by a Southern Tier Brew yet and this one was no exception.

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Photo of AdamBear
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-hazy gold with a lot of bubbles and a nice frothy white head. good lacing

S-smells strong of corn and hops. very interesting scent.

T-hits the tongue with sweet lemon grass and hops. a bitterness forms and lasts. its a good bitterness. the lemon grass and hops dominate the after-taste. this is quite a unique IPA.

M-creamy medium carbonation with a watery finish.

O-this is a unique IPA, though it does remind me of the new DFH Hellhound though. its definitely an impressive beer and its so far my favorite summer beer i've had yet. the tastes are full flavored and of good quality. a bomber of this is a short experience.

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Photo of Knapp85
2.95/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hoppe was something I was very excited to try when I stumbled upon the bottles of it at Wegman's one afternoon. I generaly love most of the stuff Southern Tier puts out. So since this was new to me I was ready to try it before I even got to the register.

Finally got around to opening it with a friend of mine. The pour was a hazy yellow color with a fizzy white head. Not much retention really. The smell of the beer had an earthy quality similar to some Saison's, it also had an interesting type of hop aroma too. The taste however threw me back and was kind of displeased by it. The taste was almost medicinal with a rubbery taste to it. Really not pleasing at all to me. The mouthfeel was on the lighter side so i just drank it as fast as I could and moved on to whatever we had lined up next. Overall, not my cup of tea I guess. This beer may be great but to me I wasn't feeling it.

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Hoppe from Southern Tier Brewing Company
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 524 ratings