Thunderhead IPA | Pyramid Breweries, Inc.

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Thunderhead IPAThunderhead IPA
691 Ratings
Thunderhead IPAThunderhead IPA

Brewed by:
Pyramid Breweries, Inc.
Washington, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A golden nectar with a striking floral aroma, Thunderhead holds a harmonious balance between its bold hop bitterness and subtle malt background.

Added by Jason on 09-16-2001

Bros Score:
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 691 |  Reviews: 437
Photo of HopDerek
4.62/5  rDev +36.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Beer is a cloudy orangish amber color with a thin white head and good lacing. Smells are primarily grapefruit, but has a little malty hint. Tastes very citrusy with a good malty presence in the center, nice long dry finish. Tingles the tongue, has a great body and a good dryness to it. Definitely a beer I want more of, and soon!

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Photo of Maestro
4.57/5  rDev +35.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A like a little sweet in my IPA. I have had a ton of "dry" IPAs lately. This one has a great malt presence in the first sip. Lots of foamy, white lacing is left by a big, white head. The beer is a golden orange with some real hops and bread in the nose. Mouthfeel is a bit sticky, but not overwhelmingly so. Drinkability is great... I think I'll go pour another.

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Photo of pmcadamis
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Unique Pyramid bottle with green lightning in me, this sort of looks how IPA's should tatse....shocking, tart, and electrifying to the palate. The brew is a slightly hazy amber orange with a thin but everlasting head and nice big arcs of lace.

S - Grapefruit with sugar hop aroma is supported by a very nice biscuity malt backbone. Citric but warm.

T - Big on the citrus. Mandarin orange and grapefruit very akin to the scent dominate, with some chewy malts in the supporting role. Moderately sweet in the middle with a long dry finish. This is not outstandingly original or anything, but this is a very good example of the style. Wonderful balance for an IPA.

M - Fizzy, acidic, and tingley on the tongue. Medium bodied and very dry. Excellent.

D - Great flavors, albeit a bit lacking in complexity. Excellent pop rocks candy. Outstanding. I want another!

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Photo of electtodefer
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

Photo of wbillw
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%

Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an excellent IPA! It poured a nice, glowing orange color with a frothy, white head. The aromas are of ringwood yeast, and glorious hops. There is also some subtle malt tones in the aroma as well. The taste is hoppy, yet very well balanced, with a malty, yeasty finish. The mouthfeel is great, as is the drinkability. This stuff is the closest thing that I have found to Magic Hats' Blind faith...and since I cannot get that afforementioned brew in PA. This is a good replacement for me!


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Photo of goindownsouth
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I must agreet with "tigerpaws" on this one. Being a huge advocate of the IPA's, this may well be my favorite of them all. It was amazingly fragrant before I even took a sip. The drinkability flat-out amazing. One of the best beers I have had in a long, long time.

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Photo of tigerpaws
4.4/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a hopheads nectar, for the avergae beer drinker it comes on to powerful. I myself loved it...I drank it with some very spicy chili and the powerful hops complimented the hot spices perfectly. The hop taste lingers even as you are eating the hot spicy food. And also would like to compliment Pyramid on their presentation, I would want to try this beer just because of the artistci labels..........CHEERS

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Photo of ReebShorts
4.4/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Huge 2 finger head on pour, lacing it's way to a nice thick 1/4 inch off-white layer. Color is a hazy orange. massive carbonation burst on the pour.

Ususally I give the smell test before drinking, but I got excited I guess and went straight to the drinking. It's good. This is an IPA, no question. Not a single trying to be a double, or vice versa, or APA claiming IPA, it is what it says it is. mmmm, hops are present throughout, crisp finish, very drinkable and sessionable (for a 6.7).


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Photo of Iguana
4.37/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearence - Pours a coppery amber with a nice half inch frothy head.

Smell - Smell is a nice grassy citrus hoppy scent, smells pretty darn good.

Taste - This is good, tastes hoppy, with a nice hint of citrus. Not too bitter, just very hoppy. Really enjoyable which is nice since I havent cared much for any other offering from this brewery. This one hit the spot though.

Mouthfeel - Pretty smooth, nice hop/malt balance which tones down the bitterness which for me is good.

Drinkability - This one is a winner for that hot afternoon, or when I get back from working out. Could toss a few back in a session.

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Photo of amicar
4.3/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice orange- tinged amber with slight white head. Smells flowery and citrusy. Taste is a smooth hoppiness giving way to crisp bitterness and malt predominating. Refreshing with a nice mouthfeel. I could knock a few of these back easily. Very nice.

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Photo of ztprez
4.3/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden amber with soft white head. Glistens in the glass. Nice smell of hops. The first taste has just the right bite of hop blending with the sweetness of the malt.

This beer goes down smooth and is great alone or with a nice stew. This beer is great for someone who wants that lingering taste of hops, but does not want to be totally overwhelmed with bitterness.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.3/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My 100th review. Didn't plan it this way or anything :)

Pours a very pretty red/brown with a good amount of carbonation and a crown head. Looks straight out of a beer commercial.

Nose is hoppy as hell, very fruity and piney.

Tastes mostly of the fruity hops variety as this isn't very bitter. Grapefruit, orange peel, other citrus variety. Malt is present, but while this may not be a hop bomb, it is a hoppy bastard no less.
Very enjoyable.

Mouth is medium as is carbonation. Works well.

Drinkability is good, I could see myself sessioning with these even with the moderately high ABV. I may prefer Stone's offering as my favorite regular IPA, but this is damn good in it's own right.

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Photo of ypsifly
4.27/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz twist top dated best by 06/08/05 ink jetted on the back of the neck label, poured into a pint. So I'm eight days late...

Bright copper with a small, white head that falls to a thin layer of wispy foam and leaves random lacing as it goes down.

The nose is mostly piney hops with some earthy malt underneath.

Caramel from the malts followed by a growing hop bitterness. The malt provides backbone as it never really goes away and tempers the strength of the hops. Overall, strong flavors that are balanced. The mouthfeel is good for the style and I could drink this one all night.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.27/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I have had this a few times and it's nice when you haven't had it for a while to remember how well balanced a strong IPA this is. What we have lately been calling APA's have been my favorites for quite a while. I especially like those that are either very unique or very well balanced. This is the latter.

It's smooth, yet true to the genre - heavily hopped, loads of malt (and ABV). Very drinkable (more so than many others we are calling APA's). I remember most other Pyramids as somewhat light-weights, but this one is not (though slightly for the genre).I have picked this up several times. Very satisfying taste.

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Photo of GrantBrennan
4.25/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of LarryMyers
4.25/5  rDev +25.7%

Photo of dancaplette
4.25/5  rDev +25.7%

Photo of superwho24
4.25/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Look: average
Smell: malts, banana
Taste: banana, malts, watermelon
Feel: fantastic
Overall: good. Not great.

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Photo of TastyTaste
4.23/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not sure if this is the same as the old IPA, but here goes.

Appearance: A nice copper color, good visible carbonation. Nice loooking head.

Smell: Nice fruity hops, piney and citrusy, very full.

Taste: Wow, holy hops. I don't remember this from the pyramid IPA. What a large amoutn of hops, this is bordering on a double. Lip smacking, slightly sweet, very good.

A very nice beer, big and hoppy, fairly priced, and one that I could see myself going back to.

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Photo of Toddv29424
4.23/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The smell of this beer is a little strange...its a bit like spoiled yeast. Usually with an IPA there is more of a hint toward the hops, but I can discern almost nothing from the smell. The taste however is terrific. The initial taste is much like a traditional ale with a bland taste, but about half-way through the sip the taste of hops explodes in your mouth and takes over. Its a very fruity taste unlike many of the IPA's out there, which tent to forsake hop amount over flavor. Much like other Pyramid ales, this is very focused on taste and is a treat to enjoy.

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Photo of GeoffFromSJ
4.23/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up this beer on my road trip to California.

Pours a beautiful amber with a thick head. Lace stays throughout. Smells of Cascade hops. You first taste the non-bitter hops flavor which then goes into a nice hops bitterness. There is a good malt backbone which the hops can hang on. Not as good as the draft version I had on their brewpub, but quite tasty.

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Photo of Derek
4.22/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer defines the American IPA style.

As expected, it was maltier & more bitter than their APA, but it seem to have more cascade hop flavour as well. Thus, it may not be as approachable to the average consumer, but any beer-geek will surely love it!

More citrous, cascade flavour than Pike's.

I loved it. :D

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Photo of mynie
4.21/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy gold orange with almost no head. A little off color with it's haze, but really not bad.

Smells like sticky icky centennial pine hops and a big chewy malt. Very nicely balanced.

Tastes like pine hops, caramel bread malt, more pine and bread near the middle and a strong kick of yeast at the end. Very good, but nowhere near as intense as the smell had led me to believe.

A good stab at a Big Boy Beer from a usually decent-but-unexceptional brewery.

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Photo of Tupperwolf
4.2/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received at Pyramid brewhouse in Seattle. Clear amber, a few rising bubbles, with a fizzy white head that soon dissipated and left just a little lacing behind.

Smooth malts are present, as is a citruisy, building oily aroma of hops. There's a definite floral quality as well; Not a hop bomb, not a weak IPA.

Wow! It really takes a lot to get a five out of a regular IPA from me - A standard IPA usually doesn't satisfy when I'm in the mood for hops, but the taste of this is incredible. It's not that it's overly hoppy, it's that the flavor of the hops is outta this world. They're fruity, floral, and citruisy all at once - an extremely bold, mouth-filling oily wonder. Fantastic!

Crisp and oily all at once - slight carbonation, just enough to notice - very mouth-filling, with a nice finish, lingering just enough to get you back in for more.

Final thoughts - wow! Quitre a distinct and delicious IPA. I'm more impressed than I expected! :)

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Thunderhead IPA from Pyramid Breweries, Inc.
Beer rating: 3.38 out of 5 with 691 ratings