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Alaskan Imperial IPA (Pilot Series) | Alaskan Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
82
good
72 Reviews
THE BROS
80
good
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Alaskan Imperial IPA (Pilot Series)Alaskan Imperial IPA (Pilot Series)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
alaskanbeer.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
With three additions of Summit hops in the kettle and dry-hopped with Mosaic, Topaz and Simcoe, this fairly dry brew is extremely aromatic. You may detect notes of Asian pear, passion fruit and pine, with a maltytoasted nut and toffee aroma. The “juicy” hops taste combines with strong herbal notes, and complex tropical fruit to balance against the delicate malt build in this beer.

80 IBUs

Added by JohnGalt1 on 03-13-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
72
Ratings:
126
Avg:
3.62
pDev:
15.19%
 
 
Wants:
5
Gots:
7
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 72 | Ratings: 126
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.71/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Best by 11/28/15.

Pours a murky dark golden-orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of citrus fruit, citrus zest, grapefruit juice, and earthy hop aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest, grapefruit juice, and slight tropical fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a solid mix of citrus and tropical hop qualities.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of oberon
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a deep burnt with large billowing light beige head that gets creamy as it settles leaving a full ring of lace behind.Pine in the nose along with sweet caramel malts.A real creamy feel for the style,it slides down easy.Pine and tangerine upfront on the palate with some caramel and breadiness in the finish.The more I drink the more I like,I even like the malty finish.it never get's to sweet for me.

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Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, best before 11/29/2015. Pours slightly hazy orange/amber color with a 2 finger dense and fluffy light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of grapefruit, tangerine, peach, pineapple, pear, lemon zest, orange peel, pepper, pine, honey, light caramel, toasted bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of juicy citrus/tropical/piney hops and moderate bready malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, peach, pineapple, pear, lemon zest, orange peel, pepper, pine, honey, light caramel, toasted bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Moderate amount of piney/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, peach, pineapple, lemon/orange peel, pepper, pine, honey, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy citrus/tropical/piney hops and moderate malt sweetness; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from bitterness after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, moderately sticky/resinous, and lightly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is a very nice DIPA style. All around good complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy citrus/tropical/piney hops and moderate bready malt sweetness; and very smooth and easy to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of mactrail
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rich and surprisingly sweet strong hoppy ale.

Pretty golden amber color in the chalice. Sprightly on the tongue, though head is not long lasting. Very sweet, and rather acidic. Pineapple and sugar cane, but also tart apples and green papaya. The hops seem to accentuate the rich flavors but add a welcome bitterness. Aftertaste is more like a Belgian strong golden ale, kind of gritty and funky but more bitter.

Not the typical DIPA, and that's what I'm always hoping for. Difficult to pin this down to a style, but I find it delicious. More of a barley wine sipping beer. If your taste runs to the austere, piney, and heavy-hitter hop, give it a miss.

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Photo of russpowell
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Damn wish I would've seen the date, this is damn near 11 months old, wish I would've sussed that at the store...

Pours a hazed amber with a finger of cream colored head. Sheets of lacing & great head retention

S: Bready, leafy hops, pear

T: Bready, pears, some grapefruit & pomelo up front. some peppery hops as well. Pear, dryness & breadyness, a little mango & pomelo as this warms, some leafy hops. Finishes with a little figgyness, woody hops, dryness, & a little bready & a touch of grapefruit

MF: Medium body, fairly firm carbonation;. Body thins out as this warms

Drinks alright, I am sure this was more awesome new; a pity they could make their bottling dates a little clearer

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Photo of Jason
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz brown bomber with a freshness date.

LOOK: Hazed pale amber, excellent lacing.

SMELL: Candied orange peel, mint, figs, alcoholic esters, bready malt.

TASTE: Pulling hop flavor, leafy, medium body, smooth, mint, spearmint, cigar tobacco, orange cordial, warming alcohol, estery, dried tropical fruit, bitter finish.

Hits all the right bells and whistle to be a DIPA, good balance and a sipper. A bit cleaner and perhaps replacing or toning down the Amarillo hops with some other hop would have been better here.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 01/07/12 notes. Thanks to MrChopin on RB for sharing this one. 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a murky medium orange color with two inches of fluffy white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of citrus hops, oranges, fruity malts, and light pine hops. Lots of oranges and fruity, pretty nice.

t - Tastes of oranges, lemons, citrus hops, fruity malts, and light pine hops. Not as strong as the nose, but still nice.

m - Medium body and low carbonation. Not a lot of bitterness, pretty easy to drink for the ABV.

o - Overall a nice DIPA from Alaskan. Some nice orange and citrus hops to it, would certainly have it again.

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Photo of jwc215
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours orange amber with a thin lasting white head that leaves trailing lace.

The smell is of citric and tropical fruit - not so much grapefruit, more mango, pineapple, pear. Caramel mixes in.

The taste is of soft fruit - especially pear and a general citric tang. Caramel and alcohol mix in. It has a soft, fruity, not too bitter finish.

It is on the lighter side of the DIPA spectrum, but is smooth despite noticeable alcohol.

Other than the abv, it is a milder, softer DIPA. Enjoyable enough and pretty easy to drink.

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Photo of Gavage
3.61/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours a clear dark orange color with a one finger head. Thick surface coating lingers through the drink.

Smell: grapefruit and pineapple dominate with some softer earthy hop bitterness.

Taste: nice malt presence with loads of grapefruit, some pineapple, lemon zest, a bit of pine and some earthy notes. Bitterness is hearty. Alcohol slightly noticeable.

Mouthfeel: medium- heavy bodied beer. Lightly crisp to start, smoother and lightly dry at the finish.

Overall: a decent DIPA that is citrus centric. Easy to quaff.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
2.91/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review from 3/2011 notes. Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a clear orange amber. Half a finger head with light lacing. Aroma of light hops and malt. Nice citric hop and malt start, but a very astringent middle with an unpleasant almost metallic aftertaste. Medium bodied. I don't know why this was so subpar for me, maybe a bad bottle? An uncommon miss from Alaskan.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma if full of citrus fruit, with a ton of orange and pineapple notes. I also get a little bit of biscuit malt. The flavor is also very fruity. I get a ton of pineapple, orange and apricot notes, with just a hint of malt. The bitterness is fairly high due to the lack of malt in the flavor. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.03/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 picked up at the COOP yesterday... I think it was about $8. Poured into MNFG... fairly aggressive pour produced a 2 finger very long lasting sorta yellowish/lite tan head... the brew is very clear orange.... great crusty lacing for the entire glass.

Nose is punctuated by a big blast of citrus zest.... tangerine and meyer lemon... a little bit of malt sweetness.

Flavor begins with a brazing citrus oil hoppiness... resinous and bitter from mid palate to the finish... a lite malt sweetness makes me think crystal more than just residual malt... pretty balanced really.

Body is medium with a good standard carbonation.

I would have preferred this one to be a touch drier, but it is still very nice and bursting with fruity freshness right now.

4.5/4/4/4/4

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.38/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a burnt orange with a light medium white head. Very good lace as the style should have, solid head retention.

S: Strong grapefruit and orange notes, a bit boozy, but a nice scent overall.

T: Dominated by a hop flavour of grapefruit and cantaloupe which is nice if not particularly intriguing. Just too boozy at times, the flavour is just OK. Not bad, but OK.

M: Medium-bodied, smooth and crisp, nice aftertaste, the ethanol makes it's presence known in the flavours but not here in the aftertaste and finish.

O: I finished the half pint fine, but that's really all I want.

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Photo of Zorro
3.46/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear orange amber beer with a tall tan colored head.

Smells sweet with a perfume like odor of herbs with spruce being the strongest. Light scents of pine and coffee. Smell is on the light end for the style.

Starts out sweet and woody herbal, tastes of cedar and spruce. Fairly strong butter flavor here. Quickly becomes more Barley Wine than DIPA in flavor.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Good thick mouthfeel.

Drinkability is OK but I have 4 different beers in my refrigerator right now that I like better.

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Photo of Derek
4.08/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Copper-bronze with an off-white head, good retention & lace.

S: A pleasant aroma, though not at all over-powering. Grapefruit rind, pine, tangerine, toffee,

T: Grapefruit rind, nectarine, pine, lemon-grass, slightly metallic, sponge toffee, candied pineapple, pleasant bitterness, hints of alcohol warmth.

M: Well-attenuated, moderate body has a light hop acidity and a crisp finish.

D: Very well-crafted. So balanced it seems more like an IPA and a half than a DIPA, yet it does have the strength. I could easily session this, then seriously regret it.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looking forward to this beer. It's a tad old, but that's what comes of hauling beer back to Australia from the US. Purchased from Star Grocery in Berkeley, CA.

Pours a burnished coppery orange colour, brilliantly clear, with a firm and solid head of just faintly off-white. Lacing is speckled, but the retention is good. It really looks like a very suitable and stylistically good IPA.

Nose is herbal and sharp with clear American hoppiness, with a touch of strained dust and plastic too it, perhaps an example of the age. Earthy, slightly musty pepper characters come through as well, but not any genuine spice or piquancy. Interesting.

Taste is very sweet, almost wort-like, without a great deal of bitterness to pull it back. Caramel and barley sugar entry with a lingering hint of cough drops and menthol. Hops do appear mid palate, but they only lend a herbal twang and a slight citric astringency that again gets overwhelmed by the malt.

Not quite there, to my mind. Alaskan does some great brews, but this is heavy and thick without a huge amount of purpose. Of course, the aroma hops have probably died a little with the age, but that doesn't explain the under-attenuated body. It's still a decent brew, but I've had better from Alaskan, and better IPAs.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a glowing goldenish orange color with good carbonation leaving a nice white cap and some bubbles

S: Some citrus, zesty, Earthy, herbal

T: Has hints of fresh fruits; tropical and some citrus, Earth, some bread and caramel

M: Nice bitterness, medium body, good feel and taste

D: Average to good

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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours brilliant copper amber with a 1.5” cream colored foam cap that takes 2 minutes to recede to 1/3 its original size. The cap has a very fine bead and produces extensive lace. S: Some forest floor aromas with light fruit, a hint of citrus, light malt sweetness and some light resin. The hop aromas are medium to medium high, the malt aromas are medium to medium low, clean fermentation aromas. No diacetyl and no DMS. T: More fruit on the palate than the aromas would suggest. Above average hop aromas. Light to moderate levels of malt provide a layer of sweetness topped with a layer of hop based fruit, primarily melon and tropical. No caramel flavors but definite malt character. Has a bitter, lingering fruity finish. Excellent balance between the hop flavors, bitterness, malt sweetness and the alcohol. F: Very creamy, luscious mouth filling texture makes the medium to medium light body feel larger than it is. The medium to medium high carbonation is very fine and soft. O: An excellent, very well balanced beer.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.06/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Professional appearance, decent clarity, colors running from gold to auburn throughout. A full inch of white head on the top. Aroma was lacking in the dry hop department.

Taste was an old school 100 ibu throwback type of imperial ipa that goes all sledgehammer with the bitterness and crystal malt excess. Definitely a copper like bitterness in the mouthfeel that lasts the entire beer and comes out more as it warms. Shitty bomber format, expensive price per oz.

As usual, this is an imperial ipa that is not as good as the regular single ipa. Might as well be a blend of a barleywine and single ipa.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.23/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz poured into a Tulip

A- Bright, clear orange with a huge fizzy off-white head. Good lacing.

S- Grassy and Pine

T- Citrus, but also a bad metallic taste.

D- Huge carbonation and good mouthfeel.

O- I really wanted to like this one. Did I get a bad bottle. I tasted off, but not terrible. The metallica aftertaste made my teeth hurt. sad

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.18/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a solid dark gold to light tan with ample white head, 1.24" in size. Aroma was seemingly Cascade hops coming out of it, they went old hop school here, it seems to be only the C hops of old, nothing proprietary hopwise going on. Well maybe Simcoe, but that's just because its so bitter.

Yes, bitter. And it has the malt body to not make it poor in taste, it simply doesn't impart the hop mouthfeel/flavor. I know, its something I write over and over, but I think it really gets to the point when you say an ipa (especially double) is really bitter but not imparting hops. Like they dry hopped with pennies as much as hops. Thankfully, this isn't thick resiny sticky, which also many of these bitter bombs seem to indulge in moreso. Astringent instead of imparting any notions of fruity like hop flavors and aromas. Of course Alaskan doesn't seem to bottle date in any discernable sense for the average consumer, so who knows if freshness was an issue.

The single IPA Alaskan makes is so much more aromatic and enjoyable.

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Photo of Rutager
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours a slightly hazy, deep amber with a finger of sticky, pale yellow head.

Smell. Grapefruits, pineapple, caramel, some toasty grain.

Taste. Toasty grains and caramel, grassy hops, pine and tangy grapefruit are present. Alcohol there, but not out of control.

Mouthfeel. Medium body with medium-low carbonation. A little syrupy.

Overall. Not too shabby an IIPA. Lots of tropical fruit and hops.

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Photo of ArrogantB
2.86/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle $9. Wow, I split this with two friends and we were unanimous that this sucked. It looked good, orange, decent head and lace. It smelled subpar for something that is supposed to be hoppy. The flavor was very alcoholic and unenjoyable, no hops. Maybe this doesn't travel well but for $9 I expect a lot more.

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Photo of ZAP
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11/28/15 date on bottle...not sure if that is best buy or born on. A bit dated but tastes good still so I will rate it.

L-Deep Oak colored....

S-Caramel, spicy hops...

T-Nice caramel maltiness...hops add spicy herbal notes, as well as light tropical fruits..

F-High side of medium bodied...

O-Enjoyable beer. I'm guessing the hops are more assertive when fresh but still enjoyable.

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Photo of ccrida
3/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, Alaskan Imperial IPA is a chill hazed burnt gold / pale auburn with a small off-white head that leaves light lace.

Smell is spicy, resiny hops, some malt sweetness, not super intense. Earthy, a stemmy aroma, kind of a mix between potting soil and peanut butter. I kept waiting for this to open up as it warmed, but it never did.

Taste is really pretty malty, with not nearly the pungency of hops that I prefer in the style. It seems a little dirty from the alcohol, thick from the malt, kind of extract style.

Mouthfeel is on the drier side, but comes off as thicker, heavy.

Drinkability isn't too high for me. Not my style of DIPA, really more like a double pale, with lots of malt, noticeable alcohol, and unimpressive hops. Probably the most disappointing brew I've had from this otherwise top tier, very consistent brewery.

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Alaskan Imperial IPA (Pilot Series) from Alaskan Brewing Co.
3.62 out of 5 based on 126 ratings.
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