Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) | Southern Tier Brewing Company

Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)
1,122 Ratings
Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale)

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ClockworkOrange on 01-09-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,122 |  Reviews: 568
Photo of Shango42
4.59/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving type-bomber poured into pint glass.

A-Amber/orange body with smaller off-white head.

S-Wonderful Citrusy floral smell of grapefruit peels and oranges. Some woodiness, hoppy sweet.

T-Wow! Starts subtly smooth and just builds from there and crescendos to the tasty hops. There is a fair amount of citrusy seetness all the way through. Very little oak is noticeable but there is some vanilla and caramel. The hops is not overpowering. Very well balanced and, for me, a push with Hopslam.

M-Slightly syrupy mouthfeel which is surprising considering the alcohol. The Alcohol isn't overbearing. Light on the carbonation.

D-So easy going down and the shared bomber is gone too quick. Make no mistake, as tasty and easy to drink as it is, this big beer will creep up on you. Delicious!

 790 characters

Photo of PhxHorn
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one pours a beautiful red copper color with one finger of white head. No lacing to speak of. Smells of citrus and candy. Tastes of citrus, mainly orange marmalade with a mild bitter finish. The flavor is a bit one-dimensional, but it's pleasant enough. Mouthfeel is a bit sticky, but it's a good citrusy feel for this style. Not a masterpiece--could have used some more complexity, but still a fine example of the style.

 425 characters

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

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a snifter glass.

A: A medium amber orange color with a thin half finger white head. I got minimal glass lacing.

S: Sweet caramel malt with oak and vanilla, a touch of citrus hops.

T: First taste is of hops, but it quickly is overtaken by the massive caramel malt sweetness coupled with the oak and vanilla. A slight hops bitterness stays with some citrus hops flavor but the huge oaky vanilla flavor wins out. Much less hops than I anticipated and much more sweetness. Alcohol is faintly tasted.

M: Full, coating, sweet, and a slight hint of alcohol.

D: Medium at best, the sweetness starts to wear on you.

A good sipping beer, but not one I would drink regularly. I just don't get the oak/vanilla coupled with an IPA, it just doesn't work for me. A well made beer that is definitely different, but different is not always better.

 872 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy orange/amber with a good sized fluffy white head that dissipates quickly but leaves some nice lace on the way down. Smells of citrus hops, grapefruit and a hint of lemon. Oak is very subtle as is the touch of alcohol in the nose. Taste is less bitter than I expected. Vanilla and caramel fight it out with the citrus and almost pull it off. Smoother and sweeter than I remember the un-oaked version, I am really digging this one! Slight alcohol in the finish, but mostly muted by the lingering almost sweet citrus in the finish. Medium body, syrupy mouth, medium carbonation. I loved this beer. A bit heavy for a 90 degree summer day, but the AC is on and life is good. Keep em coming ST!

 712 characters

Photo of ZimZamZoom
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber. Goblet.

Amber-orange. Nice tan head.

Smell is big on oak, with some mildly citrus hops and warm alcohol backing it up. Not a lot of malt. Oaky and warm.

Not a lot of hop flavor, some citrus but mostly oak and alcohol. Not complaining as it's a nice compliment and still very tasty.

A sipper. BIG bodied and HOT.

Not at all like the UE I know and love, but I do like this one as well. Sipped it for quite a while.

 426 characters

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

On draft at Olives at the Ludlow Garage.

Color is a slightly hazy orange copper with very little foam. The nose is big on citrusy Pacific northwest hops with only a bit of alcohol sweetness. It's medium heavy bodied with a pretty thick chewy mouthfeel. Furthermore, the beer is very pleasantly effervescent despite the lack of foam (which I believe is primarily attributable to the pour). The taste is wonderfully dry with tons of hops to balance all the alcohol. There's also just enough caramel to keep the whole thing balanced. I didn't really perceive the oak at first, but the more I drink, the more it comes through and really becomes a nice part of the beer. This is a wonderful double IPA and I'm so glad that I was able to have a pint on draft at one of my favorite establishments! (for $6!!!)

 803 characters

Photo of GregPearson33
4.02/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A fine cloudy dark golden color with a light, thin head that just covered the surface. Smells of hoppy citrus orange-peel but also with a bit of vanilla, or rather something sweet behind it? Feels like that might be the 'oak aged' facet to the brew coming out. Whatever it is, terrific taste! All the components of the smell were present, with an even spicier hop presence than was suggested. It has great drinkability with a medium-high level of carbonation, but a thinner mouthfeel than I'd anticipate in such a big' beer (11% ABV, of which the booze's presence was noticeable). Overall I'd say great brew, but nothing uber-special.

 634 characters

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

Got a bottle of this from the Cloverleaf Tavern.

A: Pours a hazy, amber body with a small, white head with pretty good retention and lacing.

S: A sweet, malty smell with some earthy, hop notes. Seemed complimentary overall and true to the style.

T: A pretty sweet, malty taste to it with some biter, hop notes. Alcohol was evident in both the taste and aftertaste, but nothing too overwhelming. Became more evident as the beer warmed up.

M: A pretty smooth, medium-bodied mouthfeel was felt very nice on the palette.

D: A decent mouthfeel and taste combination made this beer pretty drinkable. Not really a hop bomb, but the hops and malts blend together to make a nice drinking beer overall. Alcohol became a bit overbearing as it became more evident, but it was still a nice beer, nonetheless.

 800 characters

Photo of charlesw
3.77/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pale amber, very clear, minimal head (sigh). Smells really sweet and fruity - like it should. You know there are going to be citrus hops. You know it's going to have a big malty backbone. Count on some orange/fruit in the mouth. Oh. That's weird. So, yeah, it tastes like it smells only with the oak. Very weird. In the mouth the sweetness is OK but it would be a lot better with more carbonation. I'd like it more with more carbonation and more bitterness.

 457 characters

Photo of Docer
2.86/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bomber acquired in a trade..

- Dark copper amber color, somewhat clear, thin foam head.. white in color.. a slew of lacing....

- Smell is of the typical S. Tier malt profile which I can't say that I like much... and is a bit sweet and thick... bit of citrus and bitter hop.. some pine as well... great hop blend, but sweet...

- I hate to say it, but after a glass... I drain poured the bomber... my favorite style, and I just couldn't do this one, and thought the regular Unearthly was better... just a sweet caramel malt bomb with a bunch of different hop notes... not very well balanced at all...

- Sweet, dry... and chewy.. not a bad feel but the sweetness... sigh

- For me this wasn't drinkable at all, and I can't fore the life of me see why this is such a popular IIPA... way too sweet and rich... if I even tried to drink the bottle.. I would have puked...

 868 characters

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

Pours clear copper with a big white head and good lacing. Aroma is malty with assertive floral hops. The flavor is malty and strong, slightly syrupy with strong, overripe floral hops. Slight oak, but only slight. Mouthfeel is thick and clingy. Not bad, particularly considering the huge alcohol content. You'd never know it was that strong just from tasting it.

 361 characters

Photo of taez555
4.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a clear orange body with a pillowy white head.

Nose was an intense hop resin. Very little if any oakey notes, mostly just an extreme floral and citrus hop attack. Resin, Resin and more hop resin. For a DIPA it's very inviting.

Taste is surprisingly subtler than the nose. Loads of strong fruity sweet rich caramel malts. Lots of thick bread and sweet bread. The oak aging is present, but only to the extent that it gives a really nice rich balance to the malt. It's in no way shape or form an over the hop oak monster. It's as if they used the oak to just add what oak adds, a nice contrast. Very sweet piney hop flowers, citrus, grapefruit peel, orange, sweet tropical fruits. Ends with a long lingering tropical citric fruit flavor. Very nice.

What an exquisite beer. Loads of hops, loads of resin, a DIPA dream beer. I really can't tell much of a difference between this and the regular un-earthly, but... a damn good beer none the less.

 961 characters

Photo of UDbeernut
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

200th review

22 oz bottle poured into a tulip glass

a: dark orange/amber color, 1/2" foamy head with good retention, lacing rings the glass

s: earthly and citus hop aroma, also notes of caramaelized malt, and a slight hint of oak.

t: strong malt backbone of caramalized malt and breadyness. Earthly, Piney, and citrusy hops balance well. The Oak is light and pleasing... almost adds to the bitterness. Very well done.

m&d: medium bodied, slightly syrupy in mouth feel. 22 zo bomber tore me up, 1 at a time is recomended.


 536 characters

Photo of JRed
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark orange, amber topped with large bubbly head. Plenty of aroma: malt biscuit, citrus, citrus rind, slight caramel note, some alcohol but not as aggressive as I was expecting from a 11% ABV. Thick viscous liquid with flavors of malt sweetness, citrus, slight oak/woodchips, hop leaf, hop resin, alcoholic booze, citrus rind in the aftertaste. Very flavorful and well balanced. The high ABV isn't offensive, it gets lost in the array of flavors. Definitely a must have for IPA lovers.

 491 characters

Photo of Vancer
4.48/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Now this is a freakin' DIPA ! Big ass beer with plenty of aroma, taste and mind-thumping booze! Now, THIS is a DIPA, at a darn fine price! A cross between a DIPA and a big-butt barleywine.

Hazy amber with an oily sticky sheet of ivory head in the Corsendonk tulip. That oily aspect kicks in the aroma, along with a healthy dose of oak. Excellent enhancement to the hoppy quaff of citrus and orange. It tries to alcohol burn, but it's put out with the oily firehouse of hops and malt.

Southern Tier - you can't go wrong with their brews, glad they made it to the mid-west!

 573 characters

Photo of Amalak
4.36/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this at Harefield Road in Brooklyn. Orange in color, opaque with good head and lace and a very hoppy scent.

Very strong, full-bodied. Relatively dry with a sweet, vegetable (?) sweet taste afterward. Bitter in the beginning.

Very high quality beer and it totally comes through.

 284 characters

Photo of goblue3509
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an orangish copper color with a decent head that disappears quickly. Smell is of floral aromas and hops. The taste is typical of an IPA however, its overaly hoppy. The taste was very smooth and mellow. There are hops and a hint of floral taste. The mouthfeel was slightly carbanated. The overall drinkability is very high. This is a very solid good tasting beer.

 368 characters

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

Clear, darkened honey-gold with a short off-white head of minimal lace, but decent legs as a collar.
it noses of honey, oranges, wintergreen, pine, menthol, caramel, and slight traces of woody vanilla and sherry.
More honey, again, once it hits the tongue. Almost mead-like (or Lowlands Scotch) at first, with the dominant honey and heathery notes. Caramel is nodded at, but honey remains the malt's hallmark. Over time, citric peel fruitiness materializes, then bitters towards pine sap and mint. Oak is present throughout, but especially late, though it doesn't add any sort of vast array of flavors. Simply wood and vague vanilla, and general mellowness. Alcohol gains grip late, and there's a juniper-like Gin note on the swallow and inhale, but for an 11% brew, it's not out of line.
There is not much carbonation to speak of, but what's there sticks around and gives a tiny fluffiness to an otherwise still and heavy liquid.
Quite a bit different than the standard Unearthly, though it's not because the oak comes through volumnously taste-wise. The hops are big, but dank. Dimmed from aging, likely. Alcohol is heavy, but that was expected.
Actually, the oak-aging imparts the vanilla, cherry, sherry, caramel, and toast notes that I associate with a barleywine. Scored as such, I might boost it up a bit. But, as it is, it nulls the point of an Imperial IPA.
Here's a pleasant, huge, semi-brashly hopped ale. But I'm not sure I understand the point or the intent. Either focus on hop-overload or strive for balance. This is in that nether region between.

 1,564 characters

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

22oz bottle acquired as a housewarming gift from Bobsy - thanks man! Pours a light coppery orange with minimal head that quickly dies down. Pretty still.

Smell has an initial burst of bright floral hops and slight citrus fruits but then is quickly followed by a more prevalent vanilla, oak wave. Some sweet caramel, some spices, and a hit of ethanol.

I swear this smells and drinks more like a barleywine. Massive malts with some hops to balance - the oak definitely adds to that barleywine feel. Lots of sweetness, lots of oak, some bittering and floral hops, vanilla, a slight biscuit note, some spiciness. Warming alcohol and a slight dryness in the finish. Low carbonation and yet a slightly sharp mouthfeel.

I was definitely expecting more hops, with the age I guess it gets toned down a bit. The oak has left it's mark on this one in a big way and it's hard to recognize as a DIPA. At 11% the alcohol takes you for a ride and as the bomber progresses the sweetness is a little much. Still, it's a good beer that I am enjoying sipping the night away on but there's no way more than one would be in the books, so a slightly downgraded drinkability score.

Thanks again Rob!

 1,182 characters

Photo of sliverX
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured an orange like light copper with a thick film white head that faded slowly slightly cloudy
smell is sweet light vanilla a bit flowery the oak is definitely evident compared to regular Unearthly
taste is definitely an aged version of Unearthly You can pick up the huge hops but after the sweet vanilla oaky punch in the taste buds hop profile is very pine with a hint of citrus
mouthfeel this ones a bit thick but its not to its detriment feels a bit flat on the tongue but that also does it well
as for drinkability I'd personally rather drink the regular Unearthly but only because of the sweetness and the fact this will sneak up on you that much quicker

 663 characters

Photo of ckeegan04
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Clear reddish-orange with a light brown foamy head. Head quickly fades to a thin cap on top of the beer. Moderately active carbonation bubbles rising to the top.

S - Earthy and citrusy hops mixed with a little wood. Some grpaefruit and a little lemon zest. Also some piney notes as the beer warms. Alcohol is also noticeable in the nose.

T - CItrusy hops with a nice backing of oak are the intitial flavors. A stronger sweetness of sweet bread and vanilla come in mid drink. Remains sweet through the finish with a light bitter backing. The oak aging really comes through on this one with mellowed hoppiness and a big sweetness.

M/D - Medium to full bodied and very sticky. The sweetness lingers with you. Moderate carbonation. Alcohol provides a light warming but is pretty well masked.

 794 characters

Photo of chinabeergeek
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber. no date. poured into tulip. tasted in mid/late april 2009

clear, deep copper amber. 2-finger light beige head doesn't fade easily, eventually a wispy, foamy thin layer and ring. decent lacing.

aroma: fresh citrus rind, hint of fresh pine, and a nice oaky vanilla sweetness into caramel and subtler apple tones. more hint of citrus, but light.

taste: ever so slightly less hoppy than the regular. not a perfect melding, but the oak and vanilla really are mixing with the fruit and caramel sweetness, and "do battle" with the hops. moderate to bold bitterness, with the oak, vanilla and caramel also revealing a faint diacetyl and phenols in the finish.

medium body, smooth, lightly syrupy upfront, then lots of resins and astringency later. moderate carbonation has moments of tingle, and actually gives structure.

sweetness of malt, citrusy hops and oaky vanilla can become almost cloying and cut down on drinkability. otherwise, an interesting experiment.

 974 characters

Photo of stumac
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours up a murky copper color with a nice white head. great lacing. the nose is apricots, nectarines, oak, orange extract, floral hops. A beautiful aroma! the taste is super smooth, same as the nose, pretty sweet. full bodied, low carbo. A little too sweet for my preference. If the sweetness could have somehow been cut back significantly, this would have been my ultimate DIPA.

 389 characters

Photo of whoneeds8
4.62/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to corey0212 for the bottle.

Poured into tulip glass yellow-red with a thick white head. Great lacing. There is a interesting nose to this beer. Very complex, lots of wood smell but then there is a smell like brandy on it. Very sweet smelling. The taste is just as unique. The hop bite up front is rather slight for a IIPA, but not in a bad way because it's accompanied by warming of sweet malted grapefruity flavors. The taste mellows out to a rather slight alcohol feel. The mouthfeel is rather warm, the carbonation tickles the inner cheeks of my mouth. This is a very strong IIPA, drinkablilty is great, but it's definatly a sipper.

 644 characters

Photo of jera1350
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours into an oversized wine glass a golden orange with half finger light cream colored head. Minimal lacing. Sweet caramel malt and citrusy hops on the nose. Taste is big sweet roasted malt by oaky citrus hops. Complex and leaves an oaky, slightly bitter aftertaste. Medium bodied, creamy, silk mouthfeel. Good drinkability for a beer with this ABV.

Much like regular unearthly with the addition of some oak. Worth a try, another solid beer from ST.

 451 characters

Oak Aged Unearthly (Imperial India Pale Ale) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.07 out of 5 with 1,122 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.