Thunderhop IPA
Church Brew Works

Thunderhop IPAThunderhop IPA
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American IPA
Ranked #6,367
Ranked #39,090
3.66 | pDev: 14.21%
Church Brew Works
Pennsylvania, United States
Thunderhop IPAThunderhop IPA
Reviews: 79 | Ratings: 280 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of RcBandit
3.98/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

ThunderHop is a great IPA for the casual IPA drinker. Its not overhopped and has a smooth taster with a great finish. Its a solid traditional India Pale Ale with no over bearing resin.

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Photo of Ob512316
3.9/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into glass.
Look: dark gold with a medium white head.
Smell: pine, and citrus stand out.
Taste: Pine notes, then grapefruit at first then caramel notes at the backend. Very balanced.
Feel: average, not too weak, not too strong.
Overall: Another great beer by church brew works.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Lawrenceville Brewery, Inc./The Church Brew Works "Thunderhop India Pale Ale"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle without freshness dating
$2.17 @ Giant Eagle, Indiana, PA

Notes via stream of consciousness: A rough pour brings up a short head of bright white foam over a slightly hazy golden body. The aroma is pungent with hop resins, pine, and citrus. The flavor delivers a flavorful maltiness that's grainy, a little toasty, and just lightly caramelish. The hops remain with notes of orange, grapefruit, pine, spiciness, mint, and a touch of red berry. It's solidly bitter and finishes dry with just a drop of residual malt and some residual orange/tangerine, pine, and earthiness. Nicely balanced. Medium leaning medium-light on body and crisp. Unfortunately the head hasn't held up well but there is some decent lacing left behind. Overall I'd have to say it's a great American IPA that's a bit unique in its choice of hops.

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Photo of Sabtos
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear gold with a thin white blanket dying to a ring.

Smell is Sweet Tarts, lightly dank lemon-lime and orange.

Taste is cracker, lemon, orange, a little bitter vegetable root. Bitterness grows with time.

Light but fully rounded out with a soft froth, finishing semi-dry.

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Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.69/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a coper ogange with a hslf finger of head that settles to a ring with strata of sticky lacing. Faint citrus and grain. Taste follows nose. Solid.

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Photo of Boto
3.79/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Draught @ Tapped: This one pours a hazy orangish color. There was a wisp of an off white head. Minimal lacing. It has a little bit of a lighter nose. Some tropical hops, pineapple notes as well as some orange and grapefruit. The taste is good. Pretty good hop bite to it. Grapefruit, pineapple with a decent malt body.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a snifter.

3.25 A: Murky amber copper color. Two fingers of frothy off-white head. Some particulates throughout. Retention is about average and a full finger of lattice-like lacing is left.

3.75 S: Pine and grapefruit hops right from the start. Citrus hops as well featuring orange - also hints of spiciness and earthiness. Malts offer caramel and some bready yeastiness. Pretty good, even among a strong field of IPAs.

4.0 T: Soft hop bitterness. Hops are again many faceted. Pine, grapefruit, orange, generic citrus, spicy, grassy and mildly earthy. Caramel maltiness with just the slightest toastiness. Mildly bready yeastiness. Again very nice.

4.0 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Very nice creaminess and super smooth.

3.75 D: A good beer that is definitely above average in the very crowded IPA field.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.13/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Undated bottle at 40 degrees into shaker
Aroma weak, slightly fruity
Head average (4 cm, aggressive pour), off white, frothy, diminishing to 1 cm frothy ring and depressed center layer
Lacing OK – thick frothy islands and partial rings
Body light orange, hazy
Flavor begins slightly bitter with an aftertaste with a long hangtime; however, no particularly assignable flavor is noted, just a generic bitterness; no malt, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium, watery, soft carbonation

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 3, Flavor 3, Palate 3.5, Overall 3.25

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Photo of BMMillsy
3.64/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery. Pours amber colored with a small white head. Aroma of pine, some grass, caramel malts. Flavor follows the smell closely with light bitter, pine notes, caramel malts, light sweetness. Medium mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Not bad but not particularly impressed either.

Had this again while out at Jerome Bettis' Grille, and it tasted much better. Lots more bite and just seemed fresher than the keg at the brewery, which is strange. Anyway, worth a try and I guess I'd have it again if I were in the mood.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.73/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Trying Thunderhop for the second time at the bar in the Embassy Suites in Downtown Pittsburgh. It poured a clear golden with white head that left some lace. The scent had hints of bitterness. The taste was bitter leaning but drinkable. The mouthfeel was Fuller in body with good carbonation. Overall it's a solid beer.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
2.6/5  rDev -29%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle courtesy of tommyguz pours a hazed, dark amber color with a moderate tan head. Retention is no bueno but does leave a smattering of lace.

Nose is lots of toffee and caramel, not much hops. Sort of metallic and off-putting really. Kinda smells like a penny that has been sitting in a wet cupholder for a month or so.

Taste is a little bit better, plenty of hop bitterness - just not a whole lot of hop flavor. The malts are too heavy, dripping with toast and caramel. Mouthfeel is ok, but the flavors are just not to my liking at all. It's not a drain pour, but it is not even an average IPA for me...aroma plays a big part in IPAs and this beer smells pretty gross.

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Photo of Omnium
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Bottle > Lagunitas Mason Jar

A - Pours clear amber 1 finger head that fades semi fast, moderate lacing.
S - Sweet malt, a little rye, big grapefruit and orange peel scents as well, and some pine.
T - Huge aggressive and almost abrasive hop bite, big citrus on front followed by the sweet oily malt feel, lots of bitterness on the finish.
M - Bitter and a little clingy on the malt, big feeling beer.
O - This is a real hop assault on your palate, and it has some good qualities you can really appreciate but this is definitely geared to hop heads.

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Photo of Dodo2step
3.21/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

P- Pittsburgh Bottle Cafe

A- burnt orange with an amber color mixed in with it. decent one finger head that runs off fairly quick. tape like lacing on the glass. No holes in the lacing.

S- a strong does of lemon in the nose scent but also some juicy grapefruit. poor faint caramel smell that smells old.

F- The grapefruit comes out stronger in the tongue and it leaves a sour afteraste that is not desirable. i dont get any of the lemon or any other malt.

M- a watery dry feel to it. Kind of like biting into the hop and wtaer flows out.

O- Not awful but not in the good category. i love CBW and this one fell short of expectations.

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Photo of jaz58
4.5/5  rDev +23%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A good IPA.

Orange / amber colour.

Thin off white head.

Grapefruit, fresh brewed tea and lemon nose.

Tea and lemongrass flavours followed by a good bitterness. Well balanced.

Round mouthfeel. Refreshing and enjoyable to drink.

Well worth having.

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Photo of Molson2000
2.72/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Fairly malty aroma, hints of nut and caramel. Very malt forward, more nuts and caramel. Hops barely come through in the finish and have a bit of a metallic astringency. More of an English IPA, but then why call it Thunderhop? Been to this place and while the concept is great, the beer is less than so.

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Photo of prototypic
2.74/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thunderhop IPA is a deep copper color. It’s very clear. A little light behind it shows some crimson and orange highlights. It’s topped with an off-white had that rises to nearly a finger in depth before falling back quickly. It held up at the surface for a short few. Lacing was spotty and on the lighter side. Not bad.

The nose is easily below average. It’s definitely lacking in strength. Saying it’s aromatic seems a little disingenuous, to be honest. It does have a sweet, sugary, caramel malt base. Not my favorite thing. Its biggest fault is that there isn’t much of a hop presence. There are some light spruce-like notes, but they’re subtle and don’t smell all that great. Alcohol isn’t much of a factor. That’s a positive. All in all, not good.

The flavor is better, but is average at best. The malt base is mostly caramel and is very sweet. For an American IPA, it’s too much caramel (in my opinion). It seems like it’s the focal point of the flavor. Hops are secondary. Not good for an IPA. They have piney, spruce-like flavor that adds just a touch of bitterness. It’s alright, but isn’t nearly enough. Needs a lot more in the hop department. It’s sugary and sweet. Alcohol seems fairly light and doesn’t come through all that strong. Finishes sweet with a heavy dose of caramel malt.

Thunderhop IPA has a body that’s on the lighter side of medium. Carbonation seems active, but isn’t quite buzzy. While it’s not quite smooth, the feel is alright. This might be its strongest point. For what it’s worth, the flavor limits its drinkability quite a bit. Not a bad feel though.

Thunderhop IPA is not a very good American IPA. It has way too much caramel malt and seems to be hop deficient. I’m not sure what the hop bill is here, but it’s kind of weird, frankly. A little diversity from the strong pine and spruce flavors would be good. Eh. It’s not great. Needs work.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.03/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer smells like musty shoes. Okay, maybe not quite that. But it doesn't smell fresh. And it tastes bitter and just oh-so-blah. I dunno. It just doesn't do it for me. Frankly, I am just not sold on the Church Brew Works. Too many mediocre beers, imo. Eh. Oh well.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.67/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

First had: on tap at the brewery

Poured a darker copper color with a small off-white head that retained and laced fairly well. Hop-dominant aroma, notes of citrus and sweet malts. This follows through into the taste, citrus and piney hops, bready malt base, caramel, grassy dryness, pretty well-balanced overall. Medium body, drinkable, and about middle of the road for the style.

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Photo of burnstar
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear and very reddish gold. Small head but nice lacing. Smell is citrus hops with some background caramel sweetness. Biting bitterness at first. Some herbal hop flavor. Interesting malt profile with some caramel and toffee flavors. Well carbonated. Medium bodied. Overall this is a pretty good beer but not my favorite IPA

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Photo of oline73
2.33/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from the bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a slightly cloudy dark amber with a half finger of off white head that goes away completely.

Smell: Some sweet malt and faint citrus peel hops. There is a mild bready smell as well. The overall smell is a bit weird.

Taste: Quite malty given the style. Not particularly sweet, but the hops don't show up until late. The malt is bread like, and the hop bitterness shows up big time in the finish. Slightly metallic in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and just a touch of dryness in the finish.

Overall: The finish was a bit rough on this one. The metallic taste along with the bitterness wasn't great. Not again.

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Photo of AdamBear
4.59/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a pint in a restaurant in the strip district down the street from the brewery.

A-dark honey with a thin light tan head

S-passion fruits and hops. strong and great scent!!

T-comes in with a creamy taste of tropical fruits and hops. quality ingredients and strong tastes. good bitter after-taste along with some barley

M-medium creamy carbonation with a good creamy finish

O-i wasn't expecting much, i just felt like trying a new IPA, but wow was i pleasantly pleased. i love this beer. i actually wish i could get more of it, but outside the pittsburgh area, this is a rare find.

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Photo of Stanhagen
5/5  rDev +36.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have to preface this by saying that I'm a fan of citrusie IPA's. Thunderhop is a quality IPA but defintely has a distinctive citrus taste to the hops. It's relatively hard to find so I havent had that many batches of it. I can't say for certain how Church Brew Works consistency holds up over time with their limited production capabilities. But if the first few times I've had it are any indicator I would definitely suggest picking it up.

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Photo of vande
3.41/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: a dark murky amber colored pour with a dirty lacing present

S: Lighter on the nose... flirts with some citrus hops, a bit of pine and some carmelly malt

T: a fairly balanced IPA with an interesting citrus twist...Not super hoppy, but a good dose of pine...

M: Medium bodied. Goes down rather well.

O: Interesting. I'd try it again.

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Photo of russwbeck
3.35/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Ruby red pour with hints of orange and hardly any head.

S: Citrus and hops predominantly, a bit grassy and sweet. A bit of a booziness is noted.

T: Very light up front, followed by the citrus hops. Not a lot else going on. The hops linger on the palate for a long time after the sip has been taken.

MF: Light to medium bodied. Good amount of carbonation and very crisp.

O: Good beer to drink on the porch in the heat of the summer. Not a bad IPA by any mark, but not mind boggling.

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Photo of ccrida
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sixer from the brewpub, poured into their cervoise, Hop Thunder is auburn with a light tan head that leaves pretty nice lace.

Smell is sweet, lots of citrus hops, some over-ripe fruit, tangerines.

Taste is pretty aggressively hopped, I assume these are fresh (pulled from their cooler so that's a good sign) by the hops, which are rather spicy, some resin, fairly bitter, tempering the maltiness which doesn't have much character, but is robust, and firmly in the east coast style.

Mouthfeel is thicker, a little gritty, slightly dry.

Drinkability is okay, not the greatest IPA, but it's got a nice hop punch to it, in spite of the fact that I really don't care for these malty IPAs, they seem a little dirty, like they were made with malt extract, or in this case probably just really cheap 2-row, or maybe even 6-row!

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Thunderhop IPA from Church Brew Works
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 280 ratings