Ironbound Ale | Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

very good
110 Ratings
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Brewed by:
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed as a medium-bodied American pale ale with significant hop additions. This celebration of American hop varieties includes Cascade, Columbus, Centennial and Chinook hops.

30 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2002

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Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 110
Photo of dsa7783
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

May 10, 2008...

Had this on tap at the brewery restaurant on Main Street in Newark, DE...
Presented to me in a serving glass with a foamy and frothy head which was rather impressive for an APA... Deep-copper, bronze appearance with a grainy aroma that hinted of hops and caramel...
Taste was rich and thick, with a nice dose of sweet sugars, well-balanced hops, caramel, slight malts, grains, and a noticeable bread and butter flavor...
Great rich, creamy mouthfeel with an equally great level of drinkability to match...
Good stuff and a great representation of the style...

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Photo of Foxman
4.37/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It pours a clear and nicely carbonated genuine amber, the color of bug-embedded resin, and that's by no means a bad thing. A finger of sticky off-white head swells and sustains. And that stickiness delivers some fine lacing.

The aroma is hops first, with citrus joining a raw evergreen presence, and lending an especially spicy air to the mix. The malt is there with just a touch of berry fruitiness that's promptly cleaned and crisped by the resurgent hops.

Upon tasting, the malt is more apparent here, giving a caramel and berry sweet impression. The hops are again citrus, but here more mandarin orange, and the pine is a slight bit more subdued. The grain and hops join into a brewed tea swell that is soon crisped by a dry bitterness. This same bitterness lingers at the finish and ends up in a clean way. It's unique with a couple interesting turns enroute.

Between light and medium bodied, the feel is lightly creamy and glowing at the close.

This is a case of the end result being more than just the sum of the components. Everything is good and very enjoyable, but combine them and you end up with a very smooth, easy drinking pale ale that, despite its label, hints a little at IPA status. And with the truly moderate ABV, it's got session beer written all over it. This is what's known as a go-to beer, and I'll go to it again, as soon as I can.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served a medium amber colored beer with moderate white puffy head.
Smell shows some light fruity malt, with some modest hops in the background.
Taste also blends light malt and hop flavors together to form a nice refreshibng beer.
Easy to drink. Would make a nice crossover for the macro drinker.

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Photo of RiekerStarBrew
4.17/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Recently, I have had this brew on two occations. Out of all the beers IHB offers here in Lancaster, this one is my favorite. The color in my pint glass is a beautiful clear-copper. In the aroma, you get a unique boquet of hops, with a dry, cereal malt base to compliment. There is also a slight hint of alcohol and apple ester. Probably due to the fact that no one can smoke in there, I can pick up on these sublties, which makes me wonder about the beers I reviewed in smokey bars and what I missed. Anyway, the flavor is incredibly hoppy. Paul, the head brewer in Lancaster, told me they use four different types of american hops. The beer has a sweet finish giving it amazing balance with the hops. There is also a slight fruity ester throughout the flavor, but it is very faint. All this being said, this is a really good american ale and I look forward to many more pints in the future.

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Photo of Boto
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cask version in Phoenixville: This one poured a clear amber color with a big, thick off-white head. It leaves a lot of lacing. There was a bit of grapefruit to the nose, as well as a bit of spice. It is served at the proper temperature for a cask. The taste was medium bitter, with a bit of the grapefruit coming through. Decent body. Nice.

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Photo of Biscuit033
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Served at the bar and cascaded to a frothy white head that floated on top of the red-amber beer. Lacing the entire way down.

S: Obvious notes of citrus especially grapefruit and some pine.

T: Same as above with less bitterness than expected from the strong nose. Well balanced and the cask serving showed how good this beer can be opposed to off the regular tap. I have not rated this beer off the regular tap but would suppose it is at least a half point better in every category.

M: Creamy and delicious with an aftertaste that lingered the entire ride home.

D: This is a beer that I could have pint after pint of.

I am glad to see that Iron Hill has put beer engines in their bars. This will benefit their beer tremendously.

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Photo of kirkhorse
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap in Wilmington. Smell is of pine and slight citrus. A slightly roasted malt background. Looks great. Good color for the style. Taste is mostly of piney hops and biscuity malt. Resinous mouthfeel, not too much though. Could definately be a session beer. Good job.

 268 characters

Photo of MmmIPA
3.67/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Copper colored body with a white patch in the center of my beer.Cascade hops are what I smell.Nice and refreshing.Cool lacing left on my glass.Little bitter,very floral tasting,creamy head,nice body.The hop flavor lingers.The malt is very well balanced with this beer and that makes it even more drinkable.I enjoyed this beer very much.

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Photo of Imstillthegman
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this one on cask last night. I'm a mug club member so I could not see what it looked like until someone by me ordered one. It was a light copper color with a decent off-white head. The smell was hoppy and had a good malt backbone that came through more as it warmed. Good flavor with the hops showing up more than some other cask APAs I have had. Mouthfeel was what you would expect....lighter carbonation and a little on the thinner side. It was served a bit warmer than usual which didn't help things too much. Overall, a good experience that I would do again.

 566 characters

Photo of DrJay
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light amber and crystal clear, this beer had a fine white head that showed good retention and some nice lacing. Powdery, grapefruit hops dominated the nose, along with floral notes and a mild maltiness. Moderate bitterness, citrusy grapefruit flavour was fairly strong and overshadowed the malty sweetness that's present. The finish remained hoppy, but didn't overstay its welcome. Medium/light bodied with creamy carbonation and a bit of dryness. Overall, a solid beer with some nice hop character.

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Photo of jackorain
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Was at the brewery last night for dinner.

A-dark amber, or even light brown color, crystal clear. Okay, off-white 1 inch head with some staying power. Lacing was near non-existent.

S-Some pine and green hops and carmel malts.

T- this beer is a pleasnt surprise taste wise. Really well balanced, nice pine and green hops lend a moderate bitterness. Very solid malt backbone comes through in the middle, quite malty, biscuit and caramel are the most prominent.

M-light body, nice carbonation

D-very high, an easy session at the bar.

Overall-A really nice stab at the APA style, definitely east coast version with the big malts.

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Photo of gpcollen1
4.17/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a huge headed monster into my Harpoon IPA glass. Yields quite a voluminous head that does not stick around too long. Appears a dark amberish - clear as a bell.

Aromas are piney with maybe a hint of citrus - more orange than lemon. Piney nonetheless, with a bit of sweetness coming in here and there.

Taste is initially malty sweet, hints of light toffee, but quickly transitions into a mildly carbonated bit of hops. No hopmonster here but the hops is there and transitions into a nice dry finish, just the way I like it.

Only complaint here is this one is thin. May be by design but really thin, just made it not so perfect I guess. Other than that, quite a drinkable little guy for sure. Thanks to leftmindedrighty for a gem for me to enjoy watching the Hoyas beat NC to got to the Final 4.

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Photo of ffejherb
4.27/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on draught in a 16oz. pint glass at the West Chester, PA location on 12/1/06.

A - Hazy amber body with a small white head that quickly vanished but left very nice lacing on the glass.

S - Nice blend of malt and hops in the nose. Light hoppy aroma introduced some nice pine and citrus notes with a hint of grapefruit. Smelled very fresh!

T - Mild hop flavor with light bitter initial flavor and finish. Nice balance of malt and hop flavors. This is a very tasty APA!

M - Dry texture, medium body with soft carbonation and slightly bitter finish.

D - More quaffable than the Hopilicious. This would make a very nice session beer. There is a mild hop presence that shouldn't offend most beer drinkers who generally don't like hoppy ales, yet there is a nice, balanced flavor with some bitterness that hopheads can likely appreciate.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
2.83/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer came a crystal clear brown amber with a frothy, uneven, slightly tan head.

Smelled of pine and nectarines with a light and airy wheat bread dough behind it.

Tasted of a light molasses with a dry note-book paper. Seriously, the taste that kept coming to my mind was that of making spit balls in middle school. Could it be bleach? Who knows. There was some distant pine hop trying to fight it’s way through this, but the note-book paper really drew my attention.

The mouth feel was light and almost watery.

I really doubt this is supposed to taste this way. What happened?

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Photo of Gavage
4.45/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: clear amber / orange in color with a 1" head that slowly fades away. Spotty lacing develops.

Smell: the nose picks up strong hop bitterness, which almost hides the lighter citrus tones.

Taste: typical west coast APA with a well balanced combination of caramel, oranges, and strong bittereness.

Mouthfeel: crisp at the start and finish. The bitterness lingers softly on the tongue after swallowing. Medium bodied.

Drinkability: Superb. If I had to drink only one beer on the menu, this would be it. When I think of Iron Hill beers, this one usually comes to mind first.

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Photo of kaszeta
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled hand-pulled at the Iron Hill brewpub in Newark.

Poured with a nice copper body and a light hazy head and a bit of lace. The aroma is nice a sweet, with a lot of malt and some decent hops balancing it out. The taste is nice and bitter, with a pleasant fruitiness from the hops that linger. The mouthfeel is very soft and pleasant as well, making for a nice, drinkable session beer.

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Photo of DevilDogBeer
4.74/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Ironbound Ale at Iron Hill Brewery in North Wales, PA is an exceptional example of an APA. The pour is smooth with a average head that stays from pour to mug bottom. A strong hop nose is immediately detectable in this amber beer. The citrus aroma makes this beer as refreshing as it is satisfying. The Pale Ale serving of hops is balanced well with a good malt body. The mouthfeel of this beer is crisp and clean, leaving a great citrus aftertaste. A very drinkable beer, crisp in the mouth and smooth going down. This brew does not leave you feeling stuffed.

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Photo of BuckSpin
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another beauty to behold, its ruddy orange hue compared very nicely with its white head of tight, clinging lossely to the glass. The nose was sharp, biting, with strong hops and hints of spice (cloves?) - a premonition.

3 words - hops, hops, hops. This is a veritable Easter Rabbit it has so much hop in it. You will definitely want to save this for last if sampling. While there is no mistaking the initial taste, it does segway to a nice malt balance, then finishes with a - surprise - different hop kick. This APA would hold up to the stongest foods well. I enjoyed it, but was glad it was the last beer of the sampler.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Glowing copper with a small head of khaki foam. Aromas are of piney hops, citrus fruits, bready malts, and french bread. The taste is hoppy up front with some lovely pine notes in the middle, and a slightly dry, zesty finish laced with citrus flavors. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, and to style, and the drinkability is very good. A solid version.

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Photo of stirgy
4.39/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at their brewpub in Newark, Delaware. This one was a deep copper in color. No head, very clear. Beautifully distinct piney resin hop aroma. There’s no mistaking these hops - Pacific NW varieties, like Cascade. The taste is full of flavor, has a decent body of sweet malt, and finishes with the common grapefruit rind bitter tang that is common to many an American Pale. Becomes even more flavorful as the beer warms, and intensely so. Very nice.

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Photo of beernbbq
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My favorite at Iron Hill. Strong floral aroma, primarily Cascades but other varieties as well. Very fresh smelling hops. The biscuit malt is present but not assertive till it warms a bit. Nice body and very fresh which I enjoy. A great apertitf and gets my appetite going.

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Photo of Jarod
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours into the glass a typical amber color for this style. The head was nice and thick and white in color, light lace was on the sides. The aroma had hops and hints of fruit. The taste was just like it smelled, hoppy and light fruity. Nice dry taste to it made it pleasing. Good beer for the style.

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Photo of mophie
4.5/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An outstanding American ale! Amber color with a thick, white head. Floral hoppy aroma and taste, with a touch of grapefruit. Nice, dry finish, which makes you want to drink more and more. Very well done, and a real treat if you find yourself in the Delaware Valley.

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Ironbound Ale from Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
3.88 out of 5 based on 110 ratings.
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