120 Minute IPA | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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120 Minute IPA120 Minute IPA

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 18.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Too extreme to be called beer? 120 Minute IPA is brewed to a colossal 45-degree plato, boiled for a full two hours while being continuously hopped with high-alpha American hops, then dry-hopped daily in the fermenter for a month and aged for another month on whole-leaf hops!

120 IBU
ABV varies from 15-20%.

Added by frank4sail on 03-24-2003

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Reviews: 2,272 | Ratings: 8,052
Photo of jamie2dope
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I was debating what to get at the liquor store last night, and decided a 12 ounce bottle of this would make things a little bit easier. It poured a bright orange color with no real head. Smell was of juicy hops, and also a certain herb presence. If you've had Stone's 10th Anniversary Ale, there is a certain onion/garlic presence, which was also present in this beer. Taste was really sweet and juicy, almost too sweet. Mouthfeel was medium bodied, with the alcohol really making itself known. One is more then enough for me. DFH prides themselves on making high gravity beers that don't taste like hard liquor, but in this case, you really can taste the alcohol. Not a bad beer at all, but it will probably be a little while before I decide to pick it up again. Cheers.

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Photo of ryno6616
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This thing is a in a class by itself.
Its a beast.
To me its not a beer, its carbonated Liquor!
Really, its more of a barley wine then an IPA to me...

My first attempt at DFH120 was a fresh bottle - its just different than anything I have had. Not sure how to explain it but its something to check off the list.
I have a 2nd bottle aging for little over a year now, I am anxious to see how it has changed with age........will update review when I have it.

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Photo of jes167
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I would not really call this an IPA. My best description would be a dirty Tripel. That strong tripel taste and mouth feel with hoppy bitterness finish. Like a scotch you can almost smell the alcohol. Definitely needs to be served cold. Had one that was probably in the mid 40's and it just didn't feel right. A couple of days later had one that probably 35-38 and was much smoother and easier to drink. I am cellaring 1 for a year and another possibly for 2.

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Photo of Gmann
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy blood-orange color a smallish off-white head, not much lacing detected. The smell is wonderful, a clean citrus/grapefruite scent. Big, bold, and juicy. The taste is of citrus, grapefruit hop, sugary sweet like orange soda concentrate. I prefer my IPAs to be a bit on the bitter side. The feel is well carbonated and slickly sweet. Definitely a BIG BEER, but goes overboard. Too much sweetness kills the hop flavors.

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Photo of Immortale25
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Due South Brewing Co. snifter. Bottleneck says Bottled in 2011.

A- Pours a murky copper color and it's hard to get a head out of it. Basically just a half-full 1/8 inch layer of surface foam that immediately dissipates to a paper-thin ring around the edge of the glass. Average lacing with some alcohol legs.

S- Sweet malts infused with sharp alcohol that singes the nostrils plus some twangy hops. Notes of vanilla, caramel and brown sugar.

T- The alcohol is the first thing to sink its teeth in, followed by the toffee-like malt sweetness. Hops are there too, amazingly enough since this bottle's over a year old. Bitter and toasty aftertaste. A little bit of raisin too. Also some white grape-type tannins.

M- As said before, sharp and bitey while also syrupy causing the lips to smack repeatedly. There's actually a halfway decent amount of carbonation given its age. Medium body.

O- Not bad, but I've kinda given up hope on actually ever loving this beer.

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Photo of justintcoons
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter.

A: Pours an orange/amber with excellent clarity and low carbonation. Not even 1/2 a finger of head shows up before it instantly vanishes.

N: Tangerine, lemon and fruity esters galore. Caramel/toffee, rubbing alcohol and something that smells oaky. Not as aromatic as I hoped.

T: Toffee, caramel, candy sugar, numbing alcohol and hints of lemon juice upfront. Mid-palate shows cleaner caramel malts, notes of tangerine, clementine, some pineapple, lemon, cough syrup and more sugar. Finishes with loads of sugar (some scorched), pine, papaya, lemon zest and orange rind. There's also some kind of burnt earthiness that lingers and tastes rather wood-like.

M: Medium-full bodied, sticky and WARMING. That's all that needs to be said.

O: As far as super high octane beers go the alcohol is hidden quite well with it's 18% abv. Don't get me wrong, it's there and it's pretty apparent but I've had 15% beers that didn't hide the booze as well as 120 does. Sweet, sugary malts really showcase on the beer rather than the hops. I give it a 4/5 for giving me a really quick buzz.

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Photo of Wortman1998
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Was not expecting this. It's really hard to put this in the class with other Imperial IPA's that I enjoy so much. At first smell, I knew that this was something very different. A boozy, almost bourbon smell - nice, but wow! The appearance was a very clear copper with good carbonation. Taste was nice at first, (by the end of the bottle, I had enough) with a real malty sweetness and a really subdued hop character - hard to believe that the IBU's on this are at 120. Very nice tasting - sweet, with a warmth like a distilled whiskey. I can't say that I didn't enjoy it. I did, it took me around an hour to sip through 12 ounces. I'm glad I tried it. I don't need to try it again - especially at $13 per 12 oz. bottle.

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Photo of Lingenbrau
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I don't mean to sound rude or pretentious (too late!), but my only real issue with this is the name. IPA? No. American Barleywine? Yes, and should be approached as such in my opinion. Cheers!

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Photo of Southernbrew
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark-orange with a small, soft head.

Aroma full of citrusy and bitter hops as well as spicy sweetness and alcohol.

Full bodied, quite smooth. Some hop bitterness up front that combine with a powerful alcohol flavor and spiciness. As it warms, traditional IPA bitterness becomes more pronounced, but very subtle compared to the sweetness and alcohol. Finishes with a bittersweetness and leaves an alcohol coating all over the mouth.

Not really what I was hoping for. The 90 minute is much better and the hops presence here is really minimal. A cool idea, and it's good to see someone pushing the envelope, but it's nothing special.

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Photo of djeucalyptus
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I'm not even sure how to begin this review... or how to properly score based on the usual criteria. This just isn't your everyday brew. I try to score based on other brews in the same category, but this one just doesn't quite fit. It falls somewhere between an insane DIPA, a Barleywine, and grain ethanol... not necessarily in a bad way.

a. pours a beautifully rich bright marigold verging on pumpkin, with a billowy, thick golden head that isn't going anywhere. It seems to be sculpted out of syrup. The lacing is some of the thickest and most mollasseslike I've seen.

s. Alcohol. Definite hops, with an almost artificially surreal grapefruitiness on the nose. It mixes up front with an intense and nearly intoxicating alcohol bite. Some floral hops peek through, as does the brown sugar and maple notes. bread and malt notes are all but drowned out by the alcohol and the overwhelming hop aromas.

t. Wow. It tastes like I'd expect a 21% DIPA to taste like. Overly sweet and sugary at first, and then the tongue is bombarded by a one-two punch of intense grapefruit and pine hops, and then the intense alcoholic maltiness.

m. Thick and syrupy, it leaves a lingering bitter alcohol oil on the roof of my mouth and back of my throat. Even the strong carbonation couldn't absolve the intense hoppiness clinging to my throat nearing the brink of alcohol burn. Definitely an interesting experience.

d. This is definitely a big brew, and it's pretty much in its own field. Definitely for sipping, this one was almost too over the top - and I love over the top brews. You have to try it if you have any interest at all... but whether or not you need another one in your life is up to you. Definitely an experience.

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Photo of Poser
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This an edited review. I previously rated it as a 1.9, but now I'm thinking I had a bad bottle. This bottle had a nice top with good lacing and retention. Pine aroma and you could already tell the alcohol was coming. Taste is dry and flavor gets lost in the malts. Lots of citrus. Mouth is too numb to report much on the hops. Alcohol bite is certainly there.

Still more than I'm really into most of the time, but with a better bottle I see what they were trying to do.

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Photo of aglose45
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark, dark reddish brown, can not see through the beer. The appearance somewhat resembles apple cider. Very thin layer of head on the pour.

S: Apple, wood, and a funky/sour smell - like it has over-fermented and turned sour, probably the smell of the immense amount of alcohol.

T: The alcohol flavor dominates this one. I do get some apple cider and pear flavor. This does not taste like an Imperial IPA, but I will rate it disregarding the style. As the beer warmed up I picked up a hint of orange flavoring.

M: Medium to full bodied, and it doesn't leave much oiliness/ stickiness on the tongue or in the mouth.

D: The funky/ sour flavor gets to me a bit, plus the abv is so high. I could only have about one of these in any given night.

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Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep, orangy-amber (I rated it higher than I otherwise would have for the interesting color). Golden head with large bubbles, faded quickly without much lacing.

S: Floral and citrus hops, definitely. A little malt. Sweet fruit, perhaps grape juice, trying to peek through the stronger aromas.

T: In-your-face intensity from start to finish! First, very sweet malt, almost like extra sugar was added to help boost the ABV (initially it reminded me of a mead). Next, a biting wave of grapefruit juice, both tart and bitter. There are some mild phenolic and (banana-like) ester notes later. Finally it moves toward a strong finish of pine needles, with a lingering bitterness that slowly recedes.

M: Crisp and well-carbonated, but I hardly noticed in the face of such intense flavors. There was a little astringency in the finish.

O: I'd put this in the category of a strong liquor, meant to be sipped in small quanities to sample the flavors, rather than enjoyed in any quantity. It really isn't worth $10 a bottle to consume all by yourself (even the 6-ounce half-pour I had splitting the bottle with a friend was wearing me down by the bottom of the glass) -- Get 5 buddies together and each of you can have 2 ounces, which will be enough to fully appreciate all the nuances without it getting old.

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Photo of CopperMtnPlowboy
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 4

Very hard to rate this beer. On this snowy winter night, I poured the 120 into a pint glass & let it breathe for 10 minutes. Very cloudy with a medium head which thinned out over the 10 minutes. The first sip was like a blinding shot of bourbon - lots of alcohol heat and malty burnt butterscotch. At this point, I'm thinking I wasted $11 on the bottle (well, ~$90 on the two 4-packs). Halfway through, it had a whole different feel, much smoother and tastier - the burnt taste turned to pleasant piney citrus. And I liked it. Definitely a beer you only of which you have one or two at a time, not one to pound at a party. Gotta have another...but not until next weekend.

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Photo of pburland23
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2011 vintage poured from a 12 ounce bottle into my Dogfish Head signature glass.

Beer pours a hazy burnt orange with about a finger of light tan head. More carbonation than I was anticipating leads to decent head retention and lacing.

Smell in one word: potent. Huge nose.Tropical fruit notes...guava and mango. Some floral hop notes and a touch of malt in there as well. Definitely the most intense smelling beer I've ever encountered.

Taste is also quite intense. Unlike the nose, the sweetness of the malts dominates here. It's like a pumped up barleywine. The hops have trouble catching up with the malt character. The alcohol warmth isn't as out there as I thought it would be. There's definitely a warming presence, but it's not overwhelming.

I'm digging the mouthfeel on this one...sure, it's syrupy and super resinous, but it's interesting and outside the norm.

Overall, it's a sipper for certain. Big, bold and aggressive. It's a bit green at this point, but I have a few bottles and I'm planning to sit on them and see how this one mellows with age.

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Photo of Flickerdart
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into pint glass from 12oz bottle. Beer is cloudy orange, with no head.

Smells like walking into an evergreen forest. This beer is all hops.

The taste begins with a pronounced caramel maltiness as the high carbonation tickles your tongue. The hops come crashing down quickly - but the sweetness brings out more of a citrusy flavour, like a slightly-off tangerine, or those chocolate covered orange rind candies. The hops linger on the palate, seemingly forever. I will taste hops until the day I die.

Overall, it's a pleasant deviation from "enormous hop bomb" but still not going to be attractive to people who are not hop bomb fans.

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Photo of cproioi
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a hazy copper color with a pillowy off white head which stood tall and proud and left thick sticky lacing.

S: Has almost a bitter sweet smell to it. Major scent of hops with notes of sweet maltiness.

T: Bittersweet almost to the level of some barleywines. Tasted strongly of alcohol and a sweet almost caramel-esque flavor. Not really what I expected but still good.

M: Very very thick. It seems to coat your entire mouth when it enters. With the high alcohol content it burns your mouth and throat as it is drank. It almost has that mouthwash alcohol burn feel too it.

D: This is a beer to be taken in limited quantities. It's not a beer I could drink more then one in a sitting. Seeing that I also bought Rouges 2IPA That one is going to have to wait seeing I have to leave soon and It might not be wise to drink it after this monster. So in the end if you want a beer that you will only drink one beer and be good for a bit this is it.

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewing a 2006 version.

Pours golden-apricot with a foamy white head that dissipates quickly leaving only slight lacing.

Smell is bitter citrus hop and comparatively mild caramel malt sweetness. However, everything is eclipsed by the strong alcohol sting.

Taste is not what I had expected from the nose. Strangely, it reminds me of a screwdriver. Sweet and citrusy, with stinging solvent like alcohol. Caramel malt is present but completely overwhelmed. Citrus sweetness turns slightly sour in the finish. Lingering alcohol burn.

Mouthfeel is full and chewy. Generous hop oil.

This is unlike any IPA that I have had the chance to enjoy. It will definitely need some time in the cellar to mature. The alcohol sweetness is a little overwhelming. Definitely a sipper.

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Photo of EPICAC
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was purchased at Downtown Wine & Spirits a few months ago. I've been putting off trying it because of the high alcohol and high IBUs, but decided to give it a try tonight. I let this warm and served it in one of my Duvel tulips.

Appearance: Pours a hazy copper with a thick, fluffy, creamy, off-white head that leaves thick lace. For such a high alcohol beer the thickness and retention are striking. The head thins to a persistent quarter-inch layer.

Smell: Sweet sugar and caramel dominate. The aroma of spicy alcohol is also very strong. There are notes of citric and resiny hops, but these are surprisingly low.

Taste: The initial flavors are very sweet. The sweetness is reminiscent of raw sugar. Towards the center the sweetness becomes fruitier before being met by a strong spicy alcohol flavor. The finish is resiny hops mixed with residual sweetness. Overall the bitterness, though noticeable and significant is overpowered by the malty sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation, full-bodied and syrupy.

Drinkability: The alcohol is noticeable, but it definitely doesn't seem like a 20% abv beer.

Overall: Definitely tasty, but the hop bitterness is overpowered by the malty sweetness. I was hoping that the balance would tip towards hops rather than malts.

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Photo of bnuttz
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a glowing orange color, very clear. Small bubbly white head. Smells sweet and of alcohol. Some minute hop presence in the nose. Taste is very sweet upfront. An alcohol presence makes a very nice appearance. There is some bitterness and hop flavor to balance out the sweetness, but not nearly as much as the sample I had on tap. The mouthfeel is thick and syrupy, as expected with a beer this big. Not very drinkable in a pounding sense, but for 21% alcohol its not bad. The tap version had even less alcohol presence. This sample is not very appealing. The taste is not hoppy enough. I guess I got spoiled by the tap version. Tap version is at the very least half a point higher.

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Photo of Omnium
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Ohh boy, finally get to review this one...
On tap at House of 1000 Beers on 12-21-13

A - Clear gold no head, no lacing.
S - Pine, tart grape, pineapple, sweet candy malt
T - Huge massive sweet alcohol, very little hop bite or presence, mildly tart, some banana, grape, grapefruit
M - Overwhelming sweetness.
O - This beer is sheerly overhyped for no good reason, its just a massive alcohol bomb. Its just a stupid beer.

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Photo of adamks
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz., bottled 7-8-08

a: pours hazy copper with a solid beige head that fades quickly but leaves beautiful lacing.

s: sweet fruit up front, plum, raisin, banana, then whiffs of oak and hops.

t: powerful malt/fruity sweetness, so overpowering that's all i could taste from beginning to end.

m: thick and chewy with medium carbonation.

d: way too sweet, but i've got three left from the same batch, i'm thinking one every two years to gauge the changes as it ages. this was my least favorite of the dogfish head 20 percenters.

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Photo of ebit
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Had on tap at the new Sugar Maple bar in Milwaukee. There is no way this beer should be considered an IPA.

Poured with a 3 finger offwhite head into a tulip glass. Deep orange/amber body (it was pretty dark so it was hard to evaluate the appearance).

Lot of things in play here. Orange peel, coariander, some hops and a bit of astringent alcohol.

What the hell is this? I can't figure out the style at all but it certainly doesn't fit in the IPA category. I get lemon, orange peel, with a pineapple syrup punch in the middle (or maybe sweet and sour sauce). Alcohol in the finish.

Heaviest bodied IPA I've ever had. When the pineapple hits it literally feels like a syrup of sorts in your mouth. Not much in the way of carbonation.

I'm a bit put off with how sweet and big the beer is and one is definitely enough (especially with the abv). If the sweetness was toned down a bit this could be a great beer, but my taste buds just took too long to recover from their immersion. It's a unique experience that everyone should try but I won't be purchasing another for quite awhile.

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Photo of r0nyn
3.57/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a growler into my DFH snifter. 2012 vintage.

At first blush, 120 Minute looks like any other IPA, but once it settles it the glass, it becomes apparent that you're not dealing with just a regular pale ale. It's the color of apricots, but with a hazy hue to it. The head is finely frothy, and it leaves a lot of oily, spotty lacing, a surefire sign of the high alcohol content. The smell is fruity, with a definite sweetness to it that belies the potency of the brew beneath. To its credit, the booziness only becomes noticeable after the beer warms up a bit, and even then it's not overpowering.

On the first sip, it's obvious that whatever hops may have been in this beer to start have been completely enveloped by the maltiness, because all that appears is booze and sweetness. There is honestly little complexity beyond that. Oh sure, there's a lot of caramelized sugar with notes of citrus and a bit of cherry, but it can't even come close to balancing the alcohol, providing a cloying aspect that does little to counter the boozy punch. With this much weight behind it, every sip feels laden and syrupy. Carbonation is fairly minimal and the aftertaste is all sweetness, but thankfully fleeting.

I've liked all of DFH's Minute series up until this point, but 120 Minute just seems too... unfinished and raw to be considered a viable beer at this point. I'd probably need to give this beer another five years before attempting to drink it again, and at that point it might as well be a barleywine. I love that you push the limits, Sam, but this is just something better stuck in a barrel for a while.

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Photo of joeysmokedporter
3.57/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 12 oz bottle into a Chimay goblet.

A: Pours a cloudy pale amber, very little head formation although a constant ring around the glass throughout consumption.

S: Aroma is a mixture of alcohol, malt, and citrus fruit. Reminds of scotch with the addition of grapefruit-like citrus aroma.

T: Starts with acidic, sweet grapefruit flavor, moves into hoppy bitterness and ends with an alcoholic bitter note that lingers for awhile. Lots of hops evident in this brew, but balanced with the fruity/malty flavors. This beer reminds me of a slightly stronger Old School Barley Wine (also by DFH), with similar flavor profiles although quite a bit sharper.

M: a little syrupy, with an expected heaviness although it is still quite light for a 20% ABV beer. Almost sticky.

D: For its strength this is a surprisingly drinkable beer. Given the ABV I was expecting something closer to a scotch or whiskey, but the balance of alcohol to the rest of the drink was about on par with wine. Although this is a quite bitter beer I would probably serve this with a dessert because the fruity sweet flavor seems to strike me more. Not something I would drink regularly, but certainly worthwhile to pull out for a special occasion, or if I can find a good food match.

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120 Minute IPA from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.97 out of 5 based on 8,052 ratings.
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