American Beauty | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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American BeautyAmerican Beauty

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
An Imperial Pale Ale brewed with granola & All American hops. 55 IBU

Collaboration with the Grateful Dead.

Added by slvrmon82 on 10-09-2013

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Reviews: 166 | Ratings: 1,148
Photo of patpbr
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy amber with nice head retention.
S - Hops, toasted malt some floral.
T - Mild hops, grapefruit, pine, citrus, mango. Carmel malt and sweetness. A little orange peel and just the right amount of bitterness.
M - Medium body and smooth light finish.
O - This is not bold in any way. It is good and pleasant to drink.

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Photo of McNealc31
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Great head and really nice color. Honey, orange, and hops in the aroma. Flavor is similar, though the hops are more noticeable and there is a lingering sweetness. I know this is brewed with granola, but the nuttiness you might expect is very subtle. The orange, grape, and honey are firmly there. In fact, getting some hints of Midas Touch here.

Once again, Dogfish Head goes bold and doesn't disappoint. Really tasty brew. Shame it's a one-off run.

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Photo of Cylinsier
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

75 cl

Pours a slightly hazy amber orange, two inch off-white head is pillowy and dissipates slowly.

Smells of grassy malts and dry piney hops, maybe a little biscuit and caramel in there too.

Tastes of caramel, honey, piney dry hops, and bitter grassy malts.

Full body with a light stinging carbonation on the roof of the mouth. Hint of alcohol warmth going down.

This is a very good and well-balanced ale, tastes fresh and flavorful. Definitely hoppy but has some notable malt in there to even it out. Decadent body. A bit boozy but all things considered, pretty tasty and worth trying.

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Photo of larryi86
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle, 9/25/13, poured into a snifter

A- A clear copper color with a three finger white head.

S- Nice balance between malts and hop, pale malts and citrus hops, smells like a nice pale ale.

T- Hoppier than the nose, getting both citrus and piney hops, nice malt backbone, pale malts and granola, nice balance.

M- Smooth, medium body.

O- Alcohol is well hidden and I feel this is truly an Imperial Pale Ale like the bottle says. Very enjoyable, I will pick this up again.

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Photo of PsilohsaiBiN
4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours cloudy amber, with ample carbonation and 1 finger of white head.

Smell: Smells like a pale ale. Crisp hops with a slight, sweet roasted malt element.

Taste: Fruity hops up front, balanced by an almost honey-like malt backbone. Both elements fade out nicely together, leaving a dry finish that is bittersweet. The aftertaste is kinda nutty...almost reminds me of the taste in your mouth after eating a Payday...I guess that can be attributed to the granola.

Mouthfeel: Above average carbonation. For a 9% beer, it's crisp and quite drinkable.

Overall: This is a great Pale Ale. It hides the alcohol really well, and is crushable as hell. No way I'd guess this was 9% blind. DFH has been throwing me for a loop lately with all the stuff they've been coming out with; I almost feel like I can't keep up. Though this isn't worth nearly $20 a bomber, that doesn't mean the beer isn't good.

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Photo of farrago
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a really big head but it’s mostly air, the larger bubbles pop and sizzle down rapidly although it is fun to watch, eggshell white to light tan, not a lot of stick to the lacing, tends to slide down the glass sides. Light gauziness to the coppery orange color, closer to a reddish brown than yellow, the bubbles are few but they are fat and move with some speed. The nose is diffuse and easygoing, a gregariously sloppy array of sweet grains, orange pulp, honey, hay, white pepper, good amount of apricot to peach fruit, finishes more soft and estery than hoppy, slight vinous quality. In the mouth it’s medium-bodied and consistent filling cheek to cheek, not soft per se yet not biting nor unduly bitter. The honey to yogurt aspects lead alongside orange and grapefruit citrus, again the apricot, peach to yellow apple fruit plays a sizable role. Malty and the granola is evident with each sip, sweet grains give it an even consistency start to finish. More floral through the finish, some pine sap too, the sweeter side of hops. The carbonation is on the creamy side and helps it ooze over the tongue. There’s nothing you can say it nails 100% and, as before, it’s not a beer of pinpoint precision. But it is extremely satisfying and something to just kick back and enjoy.

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a footed glass.

A: Clear. No head, bright gold, light lacing.

S: Fruity and delicious. Crisp malt.

T: Holy shit! So much fruit. Tastes like cranberries, blueberries, blackberries. Berries. Must be the granola? Finish is lightly yeasty and nice.

M: Robust and malty. Lightly carbonated.

O: This is amazing. Very very happy. Highly recommended. Kinda sweet for an IPA, but still.

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Photo of Roguer
3.81/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Huge, huge frothy flat white head from a too-turbulent pour (my fault). Fantastic lacing; clear orange/copper brew.

Sweet aroma, honey and - dare I say it? - granola. (It's possible that this kind of malty sweetness is present in IPAs/APAs all the time, and DFH has put "granola" into my brain rather specifically.) Bright, floral hops, some pine, a bit of dank resin, and some light caramel malt for balance. A lot to the nose, but relatively subdued in strength.

Very, very sweet; wow, extremely sweet! Honey and floral notes on the front end; a bit of bitter pine followed by a massive dose of sweetness at the end, which the high ABV surely has a hand in.

Very light carbonation; no sting. Very little balance overall. This contributes to an overall slow-sipper despite a medium-thin feel overall.

This beer is simply too sweet for me. I agree with the concept of "Imperial Pale Ale," here: higher ABV, some bright hops, but a massive, massive dose of malty sweetness. It tastes good, but it's just a sugar overload for my palate, at least compared to what I was expecting in this kind of beer.

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Photo of chinchill
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Dogfish Head event with Sam Cagliogne at Barleys in Greenville, SC

Orange-amber body topped by a soapy, off-white head.

This "Imperial Pale Ale" does seem properly classified as an Amer. IPA.
Hoppy and moderately bitter, with a high ABV that is partially hidden. The contributions of the granola are also mostly hidden, although there are hints of honey.

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Photo of WestCoastLibations
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Probably the only review to be placed from overseas...specifically from South Korea, shipped here by my sister, for whom I am Grateful! "Maybe you'll find direction, around some corner, where it's been waiting to meet you..."

Served from a (well-traveled) bottle into a 10-ounce IPA glass from a local craft brewer in Seoul, the elixir came out a dark Amber color with just enough foam atop each pour, acting as cloud cover from that cold cruel world above and beyond the glass. Leaving traces of its appearance along the glass as I slowly worked my way through the beer; set out runnin' but I take my time.

With minimal but sufficient carbonation, the beer seemed able to breathe throughout the process, emanating strong notes of citrus, that winning ingredient of Granola, and of course bits of Sunshine Daydream. In addition the hefty 9% ABV makes itself known even before being tasted, reminding everyone that the Candyman's in town.

The taste was certainly that of an Imperial Pale Ale, rich as it is complex, with hints of the aforementioned smells being parlayed into taste. Hitting the palate smoothly, it left a lingering mouthfeel which resonated long afterwards, hoppy, strong, and worthy of a beer made in conjunction with the Grateful Dead. Let there be songs to fill the air...

From San Francisco to Delaware to Virginia to Korea, this beer delivered the goods, with the sometimes unimaginable combination of circumstances lining up just right. Drinking it while listening to the accompanying 1970 studio recording, all from the confines of South Korea: for those that know, no answer is necessary; for those that don't, no answer is possible!

"Sometimes, the lights all shinin' on me, other times, I can barely see. Lately it's occurred to me, what a long, strange trip it's been!"

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Photo of Apellonious
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

1 pt 9.4 fl oz bomber from FMcDs. Look out of any window...

A - Translucent orange, clear, with a two inch frothy head that dissipates at a medium pace to a creamy lace.

S - Toasted grains, hops, pine, lemon

T - A smack of hops backed by some mild fruits and a touch of sweetness, possibly attributed to to the granola? A touch of alcohol heat on the finish. When it warms I am picking up blueberry notes.

M - Very interesting. Carbonation is low, mouthfeel is full but soft and velvety, then there is a mild sharp finish that mellows out as the beer warms.

O - This is a fairly delicious brew. Second beer by Dogfish that I have tried with the beer/music collaboration theme. Both were successful.

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Photo of MVotter
4.74/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A - The DFH American Beauty American IPA pours into a chalice light gold, with a half-inch cream colored head.

S - Sweet hops, citrus, yeast, honey, patchouli and incense (hahahaha!) honestly...I thought I detected patchouli fragrance...let's call it "floral and hop oils."

T - YES! Sweet-ish hops flavor, all the way. LOVE IT! Holy crap, this is reminding me of...dare I say it...THE PLINies!! NOT BITTER. I'm going to guess Centennial variety hops, simply because that is what I believe the Pliny beers use, and the same taste emanates from this brew...some Fuggles possibly, as well.

M - Medium to heavy texture. Plenty of effervescence. Semi-dry.

O - Superb. 9% abv, watch out, very easy to let it get away...drinkable, indeed.

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Photo of Samuel906
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

First, this is NOT AN IPA. It is an Imperial Pale. Good looking beer, bright and clear copper. Lots of wheat and grain, and some good fruit smells, banana, some mild hops, mango. Smell was very mild but good. Good be a little more potent for the people who like to smell their beers a lot like me. Very smooth, and easy to drink, but less carbonation than i was expecting. Very good beer!

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Photo of jebbitt105
4.09/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

To the moroons out there... You know who you are! THIS IS NOT AN IPA! You beer nerds ruin the the whole beer drinking experience! Put your skinny jeans on, go back to class and finish your studies at the hipster universities you attend. My brother in law is a brewmaster for a local brewery and I have experience drinking many good and not so good beers. Please cut the bullshit, Read what you write (out loud so you hear how ridiculous you sound), and stop making a simple process so complex. This is an awesome "PALE ALE" (NOT INDIA PALE ALE)! If you can't read the bottle label of the beer you're "RATING"... Please don't be one of the assholes that rate the beers! Well done Dogfish Head (as usual)!

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Photo of chugalug06
3.72/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice voluminous white fluffy head rises from a nicely orange/red brew. Decent clarity with good lacing.

Awesome sweet (granola?) aroma. Lots of crystal and toffee. Brilliant aroma.

Not a typical IPA. Lots of dry honey. Grainy, kinda bland for a DFH IPA. Kinda earthy and missing a lot of hop IBU's. Nothing overly memorable in the flavors. Could definitely use more blending. Deep flavors, but they never really develop into much more than earthy grains. Kinda bland/funky aftertaste. Carbonation is prickly and high, not very fitting.

Not quite what I had in mind for the description. But it's still good, just not memorable. I could use more blending and complexity with more rounded flavors and feel. A good offering by DFH, however, not sure I can recommend @ $14+

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Photo of Ego
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

one full finger of pock marked white foam form a lovely cap, a clean orange hue with amber notes peaking around the corners, a fairly good amount of carbonation commutes to the top to keep the head hanging about, lacing is excellent as this one is clingy as an over sexed dog just having at your leg, near post card looking beer

brownish euro hops (I know these are all american hops but they smell euro-ish to me) with honey tinged malt, slight stale bread notes, some of the herbal side of hops seems to dominate here, in a nice way

taste etc...
for a 9% club member this is mild going down, there is a real subtle sweetness that lingers, not quite honey flavor... some what more like nougat or something of that yarn, there is a slight ashy dryness in the finish which also has just a hint of carbonation bite, herbal notes tend to linger in the end.. kind of like really subtle menthol (is this hints of the alcohol?), a very interesting drink.... really sort of mild with some really strange things on the fringe.... but strange in a good way,

another nice brew from DFH, not a world beater but for such an ABV this is exceptionally balanced, I don't love it but it is hard to not just love sipping on it as it is an easy goer. definitely worth checking out as it does not clobber your brains with hops but yet has definite punch.

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Photo of ONUMello
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle dated 10/1/13 poured into a DFH IPA glass
A: Amber colored with a 2+ finger head & nice carbonation
S: Lots of malt with more subtle notes of hops (mostly pine) and florals
T: Matches the nose - lots of malt with subtle hops and a grain/granola finish
M: Medium-bodied, pleasant carbonation
O: For an Imperial IPA per the bottle this is lacking in hops to balance all the malt. Overall it's nice, the malt profile is just a bit much making it a bit unbalanced, otherwise a nice beer

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle - Bullock's Wine & Spirits in Marietta, Georgia.

Bottled On: 10/01/13.

Appearance: Pours a clear, golden-orange body with a crest of whitish foam on top. Good lacing.

Smell: Sweetish, honeyed aroma with a range of fruity tones, citrus (predominately orange), tropical fruits, and even some simple orchard members. Additionally floral, herbal hop notes. Light nuttiness of the oats and, well, the nuts.

Taste: Fresh honey drizzled atop crunchy oats. Delicately toasted grains. Candied, sweet orange. Delightful nutty accents. Moderate bitterness, along with floral, citrusy hop tones and a low, light earthiness. Even a little pine-scented soap in the mouth. Late-breaking berry hints, dehydrated apple notes. Bitter-sweet, lightly citric, fruity finish that is definitely on the smooth side. A little medicinal tone lingering into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Rather smooth, lightly creamy mouthfeel.

Overall: Varied, fairly interesting, nearly likeable.

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Photo of Dennycurr
4.89/5  rDev +27%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Let me tell ya....
As a Deadhead...I was intent on being very critical of a beer named after my boys.
Having the granola thing added----added to my skepticism.

It surpased all my expectations by leaps and bounds.

The look was elegant, tho not quite what I'd expect.
Was a deep gold with a fantastic head. Thought it would be prob.
These yahoos on here saying amber-ish and dark-ish...are crazy.
They must be trippin'...heh.
The taste was 1st F'in rate!
One of the best beers, of its kind I have tasted.
It is a shame this is a limited edition but, day-em...I'm glad I got to experience it.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.57/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into a snifter

Appearance – The beer pours a beautiful clear deep amber color with hints of red color within and a big and thick two finger white head. The head has an amazing level of retention very slowly fading over ~ 5 min. to leave a fantastic level of thick and foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is a nice blend of malty and sweet smells as well as a good dose of hop aromas. The malty and sweet are of a bready and light tropical fruit flavor of tangerine and a bit of mango with some other sweet smells of a caramel nature. The hop smell is a rather complex blend with a decent amount of grapefruit and grass and a moderate level of an herbal, grassy and floral nature. A little bit of graininess and alcohol round out the smell giving a rather big and hoppy smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a rather bready and doughy flavor with some flavors of tangerine sweetness as well as some caramel. Hop flavors of grapefruit and herb are present from the start with the grapefruit remaining fairly constant throughout and the herb gaining quite a bit more potency as the flavor advances. A bit of warm booziness comes to the tongue more toward the middle and the end, with some spicy hop flavors accompanying them. Some grass and funk also come to the tongue at this time as well as a bit of an astringent taste. In the end, a rather biting and slightly astringent and bitter, funky, boozed hop flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the thicker and creamier side with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. Both are appropriate for the style, but a higher carbonation level may have been slightly nicer for the rather odd mix of hop, booze, malt and funk in this one.

Overall – Well.. It was OK, but really not worth the $12.00 price for a bottle. The look is fantastic and the taste starts out quite nice, but toward the end of the taste, due to a rather non-complementary set of flavors, leaves a somewhat disjunct flavor it linger on the tongue. I am glad I tried it, but would never buy it again.

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Photo of Braheem
4.19/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Enjoying this American beauty served from a recently filled growler poured into a hand blown snifter. I blow glass in my spare time and I enjoy drinking from my own glasses.

A semi aggressive pour yields a Beautiful 2finger head with moderate retention before dissipating to a thin white film. The brew is a light orange quite translucent. Find this beer is easy on the palate. Only very slightly bitter with minutely fruity undertones. The nose is not particular potent but neither is my sense of smell. Hints of honey can be detected (that's what my girlfriend tells me) the 9%ABV is extremely well hidden in this well balanced brew.

Overall a very solid beer for any season. This is the first offering I have sampled from Dogfish Head. I hope to sample more shortly.

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Photo of GreenJetta912
4.41/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance : crisp carbonation. Great head and average retention.

aroma: grapefruit hoppiness (cascadey) but with a definite malt presence. Invariably sweet-smelling with a fruity (orangy, grapefruity, slight lemon) hoppiness.

Middle: Absolutely perfect. Sweet, and citrusy. Unrivaled balance here. Incredibly great masking of 9 % ABV. This tastes like a 6-7% beer. Great sweetness and a noticable granola note. Great introduction of a non-traditional ingredient.

Finish: Grapefruity hops at first then a nice rounded and balanced smoothness.

Simple (by DFH standards) but a great beer. I hate The Grateful Dead but I love this beer. It's the antithesis of Pearl Jam Currant beer for me. Worth the price tag for me.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 750mL into a shaker pint, the beer is a slightly hazed, dark, honey-brown coloring with a tall, frothy, dense, clingy, off-white head that has some staying power. There is a thick, almost solid lacing left behind as you drink. Aromas of spicy and green hops, with pepper notes, honey sweetness, passion fruit and grapefruit, and resinous notes. Flavors are tangy forward, with a solid bitter undertone. Roasted toffee and nut, as well as some toasted oat character, with a light and tart citrus highlight, some resinous cedar notes, and hints of toffee and dark fruit. Smooth in mouth, with a subtle effervescence from the slow flow of carbonation. The aftertaste is a solid, balanced blend of bitter, sweet, and toasted grains. Slightly bitter and dry finish, with subtle lingering notes. Very solid, drinkable beer, and overall, a fitting tribute to a musical and cultural icon.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a medium amber orange color with an evenly thick, creamy head and a steady stream of upward carbonation in the middle of the glass.

S - Alcohol, lime, some sweet orange, bready malt, pine, grassy citrus resin.

T - Sweet caramel malt base is sweet at the tip of the tongue and balanced out by moderate bitterness: pine, herbal, mango, toasted honey, oranges, and some spiciness. Ends with a spicy, piney, orange bitterness.

M - Medium to medium-full body.

O - Initially the alcohol effervescence takes a front seat and masks just about everything, 1/4 in after your palate adjusts to the punch of booziness different flavors start to emerge. Surprisingly, for the boozy effervescence the alcohol warming is kept to a minimum.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.67/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Nice lacing. Beer pours out a deep orange color with hop haze.

Tangerine hoppiness with some malty sweetness provided. Grapefruit, lime, and some piny woodiness.

Soft hoppiness with notes of orange, grapefruit, and fleshy papaya. Still, it's on the muted side compared to sweet and semi-tangy malts. It's tasty, but the execution is lacking. Also, too much alcohol is coming through.

Too boozy. Slick and slightly oily with light-medium viscosity. Carb level is medium.

A good IPA, with all due respect, but the aim is almost wasted.

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American Beauty from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.85 out of 5 based on 1,148 ratings.
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