Conductor Imperial India Pale Ale
Steamworks Brewing Co.

Conductor Imperial India Pale AleConductor Imperial India Pale Ale
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IPA - Imperial
Ranked #3,498
Ranked #13,303
3.95 | pDev: 9.87%
Steamworks Brewing Co.
Colorado, United States
Very Good
Conductor Imperial India Pale AleConductor Imperial India Pale Ale
Reviews: 105 | Ratings: 140 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I love this glowing orange color. Bad ass. Dry hopping not as impressive as the appearance.

Taste is a shit ton of hops of all varieties, you get a lot of the usual citrus, pine, grapefruit descriptors all about this one. A little bit of caramel, but not a distracting amount. Its about 100 ibu I would guess, but because it imparts flavor, its not just a simple bitter bomb.

Good stuff when fresh, very good.

Jul 29, 2016
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured out as a really nice looking copper color with a pretty solid looking white head on top. The smell beer was full of mouthwatering hop aromas with a little malt aroma in the background. The taste of the beer was really nicely hopped and created a nice citrusy pine quality. The mouthfeel of this brew is roughly on the medium side and had a nice oily slick feeling to it. Overall it's a damn good IIPA.

Sep 17, 2011
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StoneTSR from Colorado

4.82/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I wandered into Steamworks Brewery on the recommendation of a bartender at the Balcony Bar my first night ever in Durango. I can't remember that bartender's name, but I am so thankful to her. Little did I know, she was guiding me to what I believe to be the best beer I ever had - the Conductor DIPA.

APPEARANCE: Deep copper, but still transparent and clean with a good half-inch, foamy head.

SMELL: Very impressive and strong nose. Sweet, floral, notes that tell the story of what is to come.

TASTE: I think The Brothers said it best in their review, that this beer is just right for the style, but that it is "not over the top". Instead it is a very, very well balanced beer that provides plenty of hops and bitterness along with some floral and citrus notes at the beginning of the sip.

MOUTHFEEL: This beer is far too easy to drink for what it is. It is extremely refreshing probably due to the fact that the tiny bubbles don't tickle your palate, rather they scrub it. A thirst-quenching beer.

OVERALL: My notes from that night say "This might be the beer I've ever had." When I returned the next day to pick up a growler to go I confirmed that with the six ounce beer the bartender handed me to drink while I waited for the growler to be poured. I then re-confirmed this two weeks later, when my road trip took me back that way. Then AGAIN several months later when I returned to Durango specifically to drink beer. I hope to do some further confirmation of this fact sometime very soon. I wish they would distribute in Chicago. Oh well. Thanks Durango and thanks Steamworks for making me feel at home when I was actually 1,121.22 miles as-the-bird-flies from my front door.

Dec 10, 2010
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bishopdc0 from Maine

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy golden amber in color with a nice head.

The aroma is citrus and grassy it is full of hops.

Sweet and savory mouth flavor. It starts off bitter immediately, with a carbonation and finishes sweet. Its mouth is smooth, and full bodied. Good beer to sip and enjoy its goodness

Nov 30, 2010
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BeerAdvocate from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer review from BA Mag Nov 2007.

American Imperial (Double) IPAs have become a common style within the US craft-beer industry, but we're not complaining at all ... we love hops, so bring it on. A chant we heard at this year's GABF was "If it ain't got hops in it, it ain't beer."

Crystal-clear amber color, some bubbles floating to the top. The head retention is no surprise; the effect of all the hops leaves a sticky, spiderweb-like trail down the glass. Smells of freshly cut wedges of ruby red grapefruit, mandarin oranges and blonde tobacco from the hops and hints of peach from the alcohol, shortbread from the grain and faint nuttiness from the yeast. A clean-cut whopping 96 IBUs wipes the palate from virtually all other flavors to start. Then the hop character turns citric with orange and grapefruit flavors with a pungent oily flavor that goes a bit minty and herbal. Some maltiness comes through with a sweet biscuity flavor. Alcohol is a little deceiving with a slow-to-start warming of the throat. Clean all around; house yeast seems to be hidden from all of the hops. Long bitter hoppy end that lands semidry.

Pretty damn good--right to spec for style. Enough balance for what it is and clean all around, not over the top which you don't see that often with American Imperial IPA's.

Jul 07, 2010
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AEK from Wales

4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml brown bottle poured into a Delirium Tremens snifter.

A. Hazy blood orange colour with a dense slightly yellowish creamy head.

S. Oranges, freshly baked bread, some almond marzipan and a floral bouquet. There is also some alcoholic warmth in the nose.

T. Bitter orange, very hoppy. Some alcoholic taste but not too strong considering this beer is 9.2%ABV (It states this %ABV on the label).

M. Oily, slightly thick and chewy.

D. A really good Imperial IPA. I slowly sipped this over a period of 2-3 hours to allow me to fully appreciate its qualities. Bought this at £4.50 for 1 bottle as it was over its BBE date by 8 months, it should have been almost £10 a bottle. Its high ABV and being refermented in the bottle ensured it didn't deteriorate. Wish I had another bottle to sample. A really good beer if you can get hold of one.

Jun 14, 2010
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rfgetz from New Jersey

3.62/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice bright orange with cap of soapy head. Scent is a huge whiff of bitter, spicey, piney hops with a touch of citrus and fairly bold carmel malts. First sip is hugely bitter and intense spicey and pine, underneath is a big sweet carmel body, only a touch of citrus and tropical notes to cut the intensity. Thick and chewy, slightly undercarbonated, very dry and lingering aftertaste. Not the beer for me.

Jun 06, 2010
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BretSikkink from Mexico

3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Orange and gold color with a whitish head. Pretty sticky foam. Explained by the hoppy nose: very fruity, with notes of grapefruit and that Orange-Glow cleaner.

Seriously sweet: the toffee and candi sugar are rampant, both on the pale end of the spectrum. Very fruity, but more like a citric energy drink than a blast of alpha acids. Carbonation is too excitable for its own good and the style in question.

It's not that I didn't enjoy the beer; I just wouldn't order another in a bar or buy another bottle. I prefer my double IPAs to bring a little more bitterness than sweetness.

May 03, 2010
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Koufax21 from New Mexico

4.42/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this from a 22 oz. bottle and drank it from a Tulip glass.

A - Poured a hazey orange color with a good thick head.

S - Smell of hops hit me as soon as I popped the cap. Aromas of citrus and pine are prevalent.

T - Love it!!! Bitterness hits you right off the bat and follows with the warming effects of the alcohol, but the hops power through and hang out for a while like a good Imperial should.

M - Low to medium carbonation.

D - This sucka' could be dangerous. Way too smooth to be 9.24% ABV

I would certainly buy this one again and many more times to come.

Feb 13, 2010
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littleg from Illinois

3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Slightly hazy, light copper with very little head and next to no lacing.
Smell: Having a hard time putting in to words how this beer smells. Not unpleasant but not floral or piney, almost like wet grass or hay.
Taste: Big burst of hop bitterness at first with a nice sweet finish. Well balanced for DIPA.
Mouthfeel: Slightly thick with lingering. Not a beer to chug after mowing the lawn but something to throw back on a nice fall evening for sure.
Drinkability: Not one that is gonna be appearing in the fridge very often but would drink it again if offered. Seems to be lacking something but not sure what it us. Would like to see the Simcoe hops amped up a little to add some variety.

Dec 24, 2009
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tattooedtolley from Virginia

3.76/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very orange in color, looks like a IIPA. Not much to say in the aroma, some muted hops a little alcohol, kind of disappointing really, I didn't expect much upon tasting it. The taste was quite surprising, the nose left a lot to be desired but the taste was full of hops. Overall, if they were able to pack in a better aroma, I think this IPA would have gotten an A from me. Its not bad as it is, better than I expected.

Dec 20, 2009
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Beerandraiderfan from Nevada

3.99/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours vibrant orange. I think this beer is even more orange colored than that Grant's Mandarin Hefeweizen. Smell comes across a little muted compared to the appearance and taste.

Taste is just massive new hops. . . you know, there's the divide between the old school Columbus, Cascade and Chinook hops in American West Coast style IPAs, and then there's the new breed, Warrior, Simcoe, Amarillo etc. . . this is a new breed IPA. Instead of grapefruit citrus zest, its tangerine (much like the Grant's like Yakima Brewing Co.).

Mouthfeel, it dissipates a little midway through, but is highly drinkable. If you've never had it, check it out, highly recommended.

The hops, when fresh, are amazing.

Dec 05, 2009
Photo of avalon07
avalon07 from South Carolina

4.17/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had an orange color and a cloudy consistency. There was a somewhat small amount of foamy head that lasted a moderate amount of time. Solid lacing.

S: A bold aroma. Hops (of course), citrus, pine and a certain earthiness.

T: Tasted of citrus (grapefruit especially), hops, pine and a little soapiness in the finish. A well-constructed, relatively clean flavor.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a dry, smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

D: A very drinkable Imperial IPA all around.

Dec 05, 2009
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk from Minnesota

4.32/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazed, pale orange color, lovely, long-standing, 1/4" head.

Gorgeous aromatics, note-perfect for style, tickles the nose with pithy pine and citric esters.... grapefruit and mango, lemon peel. Brilliantly bitter.

Taste: plump and brash at once, jumps into the mouth with full force, then gets creamy and mellow. Big time fruit and hop bitterness, getting more intense and electric as it washes down the throat. Intense buzz on the palate.
Gets a bit hot and fierce on the way down, as well, perhaps the alcohol speaking up a bit.

Another sip, another trip to the lips, and it all comes together again, the flavor, the smooth, then the heat...and isn't that what a good Imperial IPA should be all about?

Tasty, tasty...I've got to remember to stop underestimating these guys.

(Noticing my score much higher than other, perhaps I can chalk it up to being freshly tapped? It's good to me, man!)

Nov 23, 2009
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dirtylou from New York

3.5/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on-tap Alchemy, pre fish-fry

cell phone notes

appearance: served in a pint, clear copper body, moderate beige lace

smell: muted hops, dry grain

taste: very forgettable dipa - not nearly hoppy enough for my style preference. toasted grain and mild caramel also present

mouthfeel: slick - light-medium body

drinkability: fine

Nov 14, 2009
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DavoleBomb from Pennsylvania

3.66/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Drank this about a week ago when BA was down.

Poured into a pint glass.

4.5 A: Semi-clear medium orange color. Two fingers of sticky creamy off white head. Above average retention and tons of lacing.

3.5 S: Surprisingly, malts dominate the show here. Somewhat bready with lots of caramel sweetness. Darker fruits such as raisin and plum. Hops are mainly herbal in nature.

3.5 T: This, as I expected from the nose, is a barleywine-esque DIPA rather than a balls to the walls hop bomb. Caramel malts dominate and lend a healthy sweetness. I'm picking up raisin again, but not the other stuff. Alcoholic tinge on every sip. Not too complex, but tasty nonetheless. Citrusy hop flavor.

3.5 M: Heavy body. Good carbonation. Creamy as well, but a bit cloying.

4.0 D: Good all around malty DIPA.

Nov 03, 2009
Photo of Kadonny
Kadonny from Pennsylvania

4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap into a tulip tasting glass.

A: A lighter clear orange color with a one finger white head. Minimal glass lacing.

S: Floral and citrus hops with bready sweet malts. Hint of alcohol.

T: Big burst of floral hops mixed with sweeter citrus hops. Perfumy and herbal. Grapefruit, mango, orange and sweet citrus combine with the bready sweet malts. Alcohol is tasted on the finish with a nice floral hop bitterness lingering. Very nice beer, balanced.

M: Medium, coating, prickly and an alcohol warmth on the finish.

D: For this high an abv? The beer is fairly drinkable. You can taste the alcohol though which keeps reminding you of the potency.

Overall I really enjoyed this beer, I was pleasantly surprised. Not overly complex, just a nice enjoyable hoppy DIPA. Well done Steamworks.

Oct 09, 2009
Photo of ipazilla
ipazilla from Pennsylvania

3.4/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

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

Appearance: orange copperish color

Smell: Sweet malt and big hop aroma

Taste: A bit metallic at first dry finish with balanced hop and malt ratio alcohol not too strong but present

Mouthfeel: Dry and smooth

Drinkability: Goes down smooth with little bite, bitter but approachable, alc is mid to high so I usually have one bomber and then move on to something lighter.

If you like big IPA flavor this is a good beer to try, but it's not huge on hops so if you're a hop head don't expect extreme floral or bitter tones but it is a nice IPA and more floral then some lesser offerings I've tasted

Sep 08, 2009
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mothman from Minnesota

3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into New Belgium Globe Glass

Pours 1 and 1/2 fingers if dark beige head. Decent retention with a bunch of splattered lace. Color is a ruby copper. Nice amount of carbonation bubbles float to the top.

Aroma: musky floral hops with a blend of citrus. Very bready.

Taste: Citrus blend with a decent amount of hops. Grapefruit, caramel, bready malts. Nothing to spectacular.

Mouthfeel: Slightly bitter, kind of smooth,. Medium bodied with a fairly good amount of carbonation. Ends with a musky hop slight dry aftertaste.

Overall, nothing to special for an iipa. Not something I would buy as I have better options.

Aug 19, 2009
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Kegatron from Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a crystal clear coppery amber, with 1 1/2 fingers of tight, yet creamy eggshell-white head. Retains with a solid layer of sloshy froth that leaves a MASSIVE coating of lace down the sides of the glass. The aroma is initially very sweet, with a load of juicy tropical fruits, bread, and toffee, really dominating this. As it warms up a bit more though, I was pleased to sense more and more hop character coming out. Floral hops, spice, and a just a touch of light pine. A tinge of warmth gives this a bit of beef in the nostrils.

The bitterness is definitely more resinous feeling in the taste, combining with some strong hop spicing to really impart a nice sharp bite to this. This is well balanced by that same aggressively sweet mix of citrus and malt that was prominent in the aroma. The finish is spicy and EXTREMELY dry on the palate. The mouthfeel is meidum bodied, with a very smooth and mellow feel to the carbonation. There is definitely some alcohol at work here in the body but this is actually drinking really nicely for the size (over 9% according to the bottle).

Nice. This took a little coaxing to get some of the more aggressive nature of the hops to come out and play, but this ended up being a well balanced and easy drinking DIPA. I'm going to keep an eye out for this on draft, as I felt that the flavors could have popped even more.

Jul 17, 2009
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InsolublePancake from Georgia

3.22/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- Amber with an hint of red and a small, short-lived head.

S- Very malty with a lot of caramel, almost chocolaty malt aromas. The hops are certainly there too, with a leafy and floral character. I would expect more of a hop presence in a DIPA, but the smell isn't bad overall.

T- Once again, lots of bready, caramelly malts and a nice floral hoppiness, but the hop character doesn't really "pop." The flavor is a little sweet, but the sweetness is tempered by the bitterness on the finish, which is fairly substantial.

M- Fairly thick with a good level of carbonation to keep it from getting syrupy.

D- I think one is about my limit on this beer. The alcohol isn't too noticeable, but the mouthfeel and overall heaviness of the beer limit its drinkability.

This is another in a long line of average DIPAs. It tasted a bit like it was old and the hop presence had faded, although the bottle listed the "best by" date as August '09. It really just needs more hop character. Maybe it's good when it's very fresh, but it's just not doing it for me now. It's not bad, but for a DIPA, it's fairly mediocre.

Jun 30, 2009
Photo of meatyard
meatyard from Florida

3.11/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours out a clear, reddish copper with a large offwhite head that slowly falls leaving a good amount of lacing.
Smells of light citrus dominated by a strong heavy malt.
The taste is, again, not hop heavy for a DIPA but does have a strong malt flavor with a good, strong dose of bitterness.
Mouthfeel is medium with moderate carbonation.
Drinkability is OK, nothing special, especially since there is no real hop profile.

There is a best by date of July '09 on the bottle so I am guessing that this is long past the time when the hops should be prevalent.
I would really like to try a fresh bottle of this since I bet with a strong hop presence and the strong malt flavor this would be a nice beer. If anyone from Steamworks is reading this, send me a fresh bottle. I got this through our beer club so it was impossible to check out the date ahead of purchase. I looking forward to more beers from Steamworks.

Jun 22, 2009
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EnojysAnyBeer from Colorado

4.23/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Hazy light copper color with a big, sticky off-white head. Some of the prettiest lacing and retention I have seen on a beer.

S- Dank, juicy flavors of wet alcohol, sweet caramel, and citric hops. A bit perfume-y and a hint of soy sauce.

T- Pretty mellow and balanced for a DIPA. Might be an old bottle or maybe intentional. Overall, it is pleasing and not off-putting in any way, but it lacks hop complexity. The malt is overly caramel and not roasted enough in my opinion, but may please those with a placid palate.

M- Thick like milk and creamy carbonation. Milk-shakes anyone?

D- Pleasant and relaxed in all manners. Pretty, but lacks complexity.

May 17, 2009
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wchesak from South Carolina

4.19/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into an Allagash chalice

A - dark golden copper that lightens towards the bottom, off-white/light tan head, that leaves lace as it calms down to a ring on top of the beer

S - grapefruit, lemon, fresh cut grass

T - grapefruit immediately, caramel malt slides in for a moment to give way to hoppy bitterness, that leaves a dry/bitter aftertaste

M - decent flow of bubbles, little thicker than what you would expect but guess that is because of the imperial-ness

D - hop takes the forefront and is quite prominent through out, but not too the point where it is over the top, decent balance with the malt, will plan on getting this again and trying more from steamworks

May 12, 2009
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treyrab from California

4.17/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at Shady McGrady's while chatting with Deuane, jac5084, Akorsak and Hophead 101 pre Beer Wars.

A: Served into a pint glass that yielded a 1" sticky bone head. The beer was crystal clear with only slight haze due to chill. Quite a looker.

S: Smell is citrus up front but has a very solid caramel back. Smells pretty sweet.

T: Nice and sticky DIPA with ample citrus [cascade?] goodness. Some pine hop resin makes its way into the beer and ends with a sweet caramel back.

Overall, this was a great DIPA. I have never seen nor heard of this before but was glad I tried it. Thanks for the recommendation Deuane!

Apr 17, 2009
Conductor Imperial India Pale Ale from Steamworks Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 140 ratings