IIPA Imperial IPA | Pirate Life Brewing

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IIPA Imperial IPAIIPA Imperial IPA
30 Ratings
IIPA Imperial IPAIIPA Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
Pirate Life Brewing

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Knapp85 on 07-29-2015

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 30 |  Reviews: 11
Reviews by doktorhops:
Photo of doktorhops
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pirate Life Brewing, who I’ve never heard of but whom I imagine to be a hearty group of scallywags - keel hauling innocent merchantmen whilst singing something “yo, ho ho” related and wearing birds on their shoulders while brewing a substance known only to them as “grog”... have I missed any further pirate references? No? All good then. This beer got a double recommendation from both Jamie and Dennis (of Plonk fame) and I take that as a gold standard for ‘beers I must review’ in this, that is to say, my beer-blogging world. Nuff said [Arrgh!].

Poured from a 500ml can into a Duvel tulip.

A: Hazed slightly-dark amber body with a large 2 cm foamy chalk head. The head quickly dissipates leaving ample spider lacing - this is going to be one terrific brew methinks *delivered in my best Jack Sparrow*. 8/10.

S: Aroma is Jackfruit forward and all over my face [in the good way] piney, with some Starburst candy orange... malt??? Worry not about malt dear grasshopper - it’s in there, somewhere. The biggest takeaway from the aroma is how much Jackfruit can be pumped into a brew - Pirate Life says “A great deal” evidently. 9/10.

T: Not the massive Irish-river-dance-on-my-tongue that I was expecting, though it is nonetheless BIG (Bearing Immense Gusto) this is a real easy going IIPA (the first “I” stands for “Imperial” aka “you’re getting into some big shit now”). Flavours are centred around that classic piney/earthy/citric trinity of IPAN(irvana), with a less than expected tropical note [Jackfruit where are you?!]. Finish is a medium and tolerable bitterness - again everything here is done with a modicum of discretion for your tastebuds. Well played Pirate Life. 9/10.

M: Medium bodied, as oily as a seal on a beach after an environmental catastrophe, with a mid to light carbonation that lets you know it’s there. 8/10.

D: Burps leave a lingering grassiness from the brew - another quality that becomes more apparent as you drink this near 9% behemoth. At the end of the day - apart from Kaiju! I don’t see many other Aussie brewers pushing the envelope of what is to be found an acceptable amount of hops in a glass of beer - this thing is tantamount to hop syrup in your glass. The only thing missing from this brew are those Jackfruit notes that were perceived in the aroma - that would really have kicked this up into a 10/10 IMO. 8/10.

Food match: Again I’m led to recommend Vietnamese or Thai cuisine - something light and spicy for these BIG heavy IIPAs.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of woodychandler
4.21/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A local drinking buddy has a contact who routinely comes into PA from Australia & was kind enough to gift us each a CAN of this one! The CANQuest (tm) rides again, albeit temporarily.

From the CAN: The entire cycle, to include hieroglyphics - "maris otter; carapils; wheat; mill; mash; rest; run off; boil; centennial; columbus; mosaic; simcoe; spin; 16 (deg.) C; yeast; ferment; chill; dry; 0 (deg.); filter; [CAN]; ENJOY!; recycle".

Aaarrgh! The Crack! was music to mine ears, mateys, but me skills were off & so I just gave it a heavy-handed Glug instead of an inverted one. I think that I was distracted by the feel of brushed aluminum in my non-hook hand! Arrr. I watched with my non-eye patched eye as a pseudo-cascade occurred, leaving me with a massive three-plus fingers of dense, rocky, French Vanilla-colored head with great retention. Would it please fall away so that I might have a taste? Color was a magnificent Amber (SRM = > 7, < 9) with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled like a dessert cup of Dole Tropical Fruit Cup, a fave of mine & a now-deceased colleague, Beek. Mango, papaya, guava & maybe passionfruit, although I CANnot CANjure up the latter's taste offhand. Arrgh! The taste was MUCH more like it, mateys! The malt was the perfect CANterpart to the hops, unlike the previous beer that I drank, which needed more malt characteristics. Yes, it was very tropical fruity, but the malt, especially the Maris Otter & Carapils, acted as a pleasant balance without imparting too much sweetness. That was where Samuel Adams ran into trouble with their Rebel IPA, initially - too much straight Caramel malt, impeding all other flavors. Here, I was getting strong hop with just enough malt to keep it from killing my palate. Finish was dry, but fruity and while that may seem like a CANtradiction in terms, it worked for me. Keep it up & yer walkin' the plank, boyo! May I have some more CANs, please?

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Photo of Jason
3.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Piney, Rind, Catty, Juicy

An Imperial it is, Pirate Life used generous amounts of Centennial, Columbus, Simcoe and Mosaic to create a heavily hopped ale for lupulin lovers. There is some balance here, but this beer stays true to style from start to finish. The brewers really tackle this style full force, and the layers of hop flavor range from citrus rind to pine sap, pungent resin to tropical fruit. Definitely not for timid palates.

Look 3.75 | Smell 4.00 | Taste 3.75 | Feel 4.25 | Overall 4.00

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine issue #106 (NOV 2015)

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a large head.
Nose shows pine, resinous notes, sweet heavy malt, spicy hops and pineapple.
Rich flavours too, more sweet clean malt but with heaps of piny and resinous hops.

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Photo of DerekCarruth
4.24/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Rwalford74
4.59/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of pin
3.69/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Brewsky18
3.78/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a glass from a can.
A - Hazy golden orange with about a 2 finger head that leaves minimal lacing.
S - Pine and Tropical fruits upfront with a nice malt and orange smell to end.
T - Again the pine is noticed first as well as the big hop hit that comes with this style that is bitter which leaves you almost tasting the hop oils. Ends fairly spicy too.
M - Medium body with the hop oils and light to moderate carbonation.
O - Its a spicy Imperial IPA that also features nice bitterness to it as well as nice aromas so. pretty good.

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Photo of Super150
5/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The bollocks

12 characters

Photo of iftcoach
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Everydayoff
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

500ml can poured into a snifter.

Translucent copper color that turns to be clear thereafter, the pour builds up very thick fluffy off-white head that well retains with good retention before slowly subsiding to a lasting foamy sheet covering and leaving some lacing.

Big citrusy in the aroma along with the other hoppy notes joining in, I got pine, resin, tea leaf bitterness, a little bit peppery spice, and orange peel. Malt is in the supporting role providing notes of sweet bubblegum and bread.

The taste is led by fruity hop of citrus and orange peel. Then it is pine, resin, and persistent bitterness like a tea leaf. There is some sweetness where malt imparts its bread as the core structure. The overall flavor is very well harmonized and balance. It is not too bitter and not too fruity or sweet. Just right to make a deliciousness.

Medium body but with some chewy and bold touch through the palate, the mouthfeel is so smooth with a nice layer of soft effervescence and mild to moderate carbonation. The feeling is crisp and well-rounded with a pleasantly dry finish.

Super fresh with loads of citrusy bombardment yet the other hoppy goodness while the alcohol is perfectly concealed. My suggestion? Go get a sail and live a Pirate Life.

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Photo of AtaraxiaDnB
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of RMW66
4.16/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of SlightlyGrey
4.04/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of cfalls
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Benjo87
4.8/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

As soon as I crack the can the juicy hops just jump out at me. Wow!

Look : Bronze golden colour in a glass, hazy but still transparent, huge 4 finger frothy cream like head that does not dissipate. Love how the head sticks around.

Smell : Big juicy tropical fruits. This is a fresh can, and it is just bursting with juicy hops.

Taste : Big tropical notes up front, nice bitterness on the middle with. Lingering aftertaste. It's not a dry beer. The alcohol is not apparent at all. This drinks smoother than lower abv IPAs. It's a big thick mouthfeel. Really really well made beer. Definitely the best double IPA I've tasted.

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Photo of Gambyt20
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jjdunce
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of RobArmy
4.83/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is the finest beer I have sampled in Australia. Masses of hoppy citrus pine flavours which jump out of the glass. Drinks so well no hint of the strength which does make it dangerous, such a well rounded iipa. Expect huge things from this young Brewer in the future. Great beer, well done

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Photo of life_of_agony
4.74/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of DamienI
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of bobv
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Moderate pour yields a one inch white head over a bright medium to deep amber body with some sticky lacing. Nose of pine, citrus, and some tropical fruit. Taste mirrors nose with a clean bitter finish. Very nice feel and overall a great DIPA from downunder with a very well hidden 8.8% abv ! On the side of the can there is something I've never seen before; "3.5 standard drinks!" Also, on the top of the side of the can there is the recipe for this beer!
Thanks Derek!

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Photo of Knapp85
3.84/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Alan_Z
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of heygeebee
4.26/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A welcome addition to the Aus scene.
Lots of lychee and mango and peach with a great hop balance, but not too bitter (to this well used -to plate :-) )
Very full bodied and lowish carbonation.
Very much to style and a top effort...

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IIPA Imperial IPA from Pirate Life Brewing
Beer rating: 4.22 out of 5 with 30 ratings