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IPAbbey (Excelsior! Series) | Ithaca Beer Company

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very good
33 Reviews
IPAbbey (Excelsior! Series)IPAbbey (Excelsior! Series)

Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company
New York, United States

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerTruth on 04-22-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 33 | Ratings: 40
Photo of jjayjaye
3.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 952 of the IPAbbey Belgo-American Experiment.

First... i think it's interesting how different a simple thing like clarity can be so different between reviews. I wonder if that the difference in reviewers or product? I'm thinking product in this case. Bottle 952 poured the color and haziness of a good New York Apple Cider. About half way down i can see particles of 'unfiltered stuff''. It also poured flat, some spotty lacing observed. The last third, aggressively poured, still yielded less than a finger off white head and didn't enhance the nose much.

The initial pour smelled primarily of the honey malt and Belgian yeast. The middle smells as sweet and as malty as a high-end IIPA but much more subtle.

Medium bodied, the mouth feel of this particular bottle was significantly under carbonated...for either an IPA or a Triple. There is still a tingle from the hops that's keeping things interesting. Surprisingly clean, very little post swallow signature.

The flavor is good; much like a nice IPA, but with a balanced sweet malt characteristic. The 'abbey' element isn't as pronounced.

Drinkability - I'm surprised that it's 9% ABV because i'm not detecting that in any respect, either in the mouth or after the seven hundred and fiftieth ml. Looking forward to the other 2 bottles that i have and to the other three products in the Excelsior line. Summary: kinda sorta like an IPA and somewhat like an IIPA, but nothing like Ithaca Double IPA.

I think the coolest thing is trying new beers and sampling new-new beers is the ultimate deal!! Ithaca rocks! You go girls!

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Photo of AaronHomoya
3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle with very nice presentation.

Pours a red-amber color with little head.

Aroma was a bit off-putting. Combination of sour, fruity aroma with clove, flowers and honey. However, this conbined with the smell of old bananas to create a rotten fruit-like aroma. This improved as the beer warmed, but still took a lot away from my enjoyment.

Taste was of sweet, tropical fruit-like hops. A little honey and yeastiness. Nicely bitter finish.

Smooth, medium body. Drinkability suffered due to the smell mostly.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.91/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to beertruth for this via trade. Bottle #156

a - Pours a crystal clear honey / amber hue with a billowy off white colored head.
S - Strong citrus hops with a touch of spicy hops dominate. When up to room temp, light undertones of honey and amber malts show up. Being a belgian I had hoped for a more pronounced yeast aroma but if it's there it's all hops right now.
T - Similar to the smell but the honey / amber malts begin to be more pronounced towards the end of the bottle.
M - one for the hop lovers out there! The hops are sharp yet smooth. The ABV is so well hidden you'd think it's less until you finish the bottle.

A must try if you're a hophead.

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Photo of oberon
4.02/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A style that I have only ventured into a few times and well I havent come out all that impressed yet this one changed that for me.Poured into a oversized wine glass a tawny slight hazed brown with a frothy 1/2 finger head,ahh the amarillo hops show in the nose a piney,resiny quality along with some Belgian yeast components hints of medicinal and brown sugar notes.Nice hop profile on the palate somewhat piney and herbal maybe from the saaz imparted a yeasty spice flavor comes thru with some light medicinal and dark fruit character.Interesting but could use a bit of cellaring its quite big and somewhat alcoholic right now.

Bottled in April
Bottle #670

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Photo of tempest
3.83/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Basically its a little pricey and not the most complex Belgian adaptation, but it's plenty tasty and a great drinking beer. The taste and aroma all center on the hops profile of American citrus hopsbacked by spicy Saaz. The malt really lays low and is too smooth really. The alcohol never comes out, so watch out and make sure you share with a friend. I'd call it a good social beer.

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Photo of Calico
3.87/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I went down to Ithaca in the hopes of finding some of this still on tap after the grand opening night at Korova; alas, there was none on tap, but Finger Lakes Beverage Center had it for $8.99/750 mL bottle, so I picked one up.

Appearance is cloudy amber with good head retention.

Aroma is mostly of hops, with the American ones (Simcoe and Amarillo) predominating. A bit of warm fruity esters, plum and peach.

Taste is mostly that of an American IPA, hop-forward. Mouthfeel very bitter on the tongue. I can taste the round-bodied esters here, a tiny bit of banana, a lot of plum, a little strawberry. My husband said Juicy-Fruit gum but I disagree. There's a lot of astringency here, puckering up the front part of my tongue. (Hop oils may play a part in this as well.)

I'd call this an American IPA if the Belgian IPA category hadn't been added. It's more like a Great Divide Titan than it is like a Duvel. Whatever it is, I like it, though I think I'd like it more if it backed off on the hops and let the Belgian yeast character take over.

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Photo of zdk9
3.64/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From the special Excelsior series, April '07.

A- A cloudy light orange. Not much head and very little lacing which is suprising with the hop level of the beer.

S- Hops are in the forefront of the smell with a bit of piney/earthiness. Some nice fruity touches of peaches and sweet apple.

T- Again hops are the focus. A good balance of bitterness and a touch of sweet maltiness which lends the fruit flavors.

M- Not too bitter and just smooth enough to enjoy.

D- A good beer but not all that interesting to enjoy for a long period of time. Would be interesting to see if more earthy tones came out with age.

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Photo of BeerTruth
4.09/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pint 9.4 FL OZ. (750 mL) poured into the Excelsior! tulip glass.

Released: Apr 07 Bottle # 151

I was so happy to finally get this beer from the brewery. These are basically available only in the Ithaca area, so get them if you can. Let's just start off by saying this is a very unique beer. Like on the label, they proclaim it to be a Belgo-American Ale. I wasn't sure whether or not to classify this brew as a Belgian IPA or a Tripel, but it's quite hoppy so I went with the Belgian IPA. Pours a cloudy amber hue with a fairly thin off white colored head. Little granular lacing that sticks here and there throughout tasting. Smell is fruity/citrusy which comes from the powerful hop explosion. A hint of spicy cloves followed by a yeasty honey odor, very enticing. Taste is amazing, begins with a piney bitterness that ends with a smooth yeasty aftertaste. The honey flavor stays true with a bit of figs and apple as well. Mouthfeel is very chewy/grainy but quite easy on the palate. Carbonation is low which helps the drinkability for a 9% abv. Ithaca Beer Co. continues to brew some wonderful beers. If you enjoy Belgians and/or IPA's, get a hold of this one. It will please anyone and everyone that appreciates a well crafted brew. Absolutely delicious!

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IPAbbey (Excelsior! Series) from Ithaca Beer Company
3.96 out of 5 based on 40 ratings.
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