TWELVE | Ithaca Beer Company

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143 Ratings

Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company
New York, United States

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by klewis on 01-01-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 143 |  Reviews: 90
Photo of OWSLEY069
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber color with a light tan head. In the aroma, dark fruit and chestnut hints. In the taste, a white grape fruitiness and dry nuttiness. A smooth and medium to big mouthfeel, with a sticky fruit and dry nuttiness in the aftertaste. Nice flavor, fruity and dry, easy to drink, and hides the ABV quite nicely.

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Photo of Mgaide
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Monastery-style Quadrupel Ale has a translucent chestnut color, which I expect is the result of being non-filtered. On the nose it displays a pleasant maltiness, with hints of chocolate, expresso, and nutmeg. The first thing that stood out on the initial sip was a "sit up and take notice" effervesce that delivers a tongue tingling sensation. On the palate, spices mingle with nuts, dark chocolate, faint black licorice, fruitiness, and expresso. The finish on this bad boy lingerers and the subtle spiciness hang on the tongue while nuisances of chocolate, coffee, and malt start to take over and then shift to a enjoyable dryness.
To me this ale has a quality that most 12% Ales can only hope to attain, and that is a nice balance and concentrated flavors that conceal the high alcohol content. This ale has a lighter mouthfeel that also belies its ABV. In sum, this is a quadrupel ale that is satisfying, balanced and deliverers the goods.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a rich dark brown color with a bit of red mixed in and a finger of tanish head atop. The head fades fairly quickly down to a thin layer leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is mix of sweet dark fruit (plum and raisin) and some sweet malt. There is also some earthiness and a bit of booze as well.

T - Starts off with a lot of dark fruit flavors and some earthy malt flavor and a bit of caramel malt. Through the middle some brown sugar, a bit of smoke, and some spiciness. The finish is a mix of dark fruit flavor and some booze that lingers nicely.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Fairly smooth and a touch think and syrupy. The finish is fairly sweet with some booze warming as well.

D - Very drinkable. A nice American take on the Quad style. The addition of the smoky flavor in the beer is really nice and everything feel well balanced.

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Photo of StephenRich
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The 12 is 12% abv and comes in the Excelsior Series bottle; wine shaped and capped with a thin rubber sleeve. I let the bottle rest out of the fridge until it came to the bottom of the cellar temperature range at 12C (54F). Immediately when I opened the bottle it surprised me - without warning the obviously still active yeasts gave way to a massive rush of excitement pushing an aromatic white foam, fairly constantly, out from the bottle.

Really, the foam would not stop. I had an inkling of what would happen here based on the picture of this beer on Ithica's website, but even still I could barely believe what was happening. I poured two snifters as gently as I could and was aghast by the results. What I ended up with was less than an inch of beer, and a FULL glass of head. Deep, dense, airy and pillowy head. It was ridiculous; I had never seen anything like it before.

Whats more, is that as I was starring at this beer in astonishment, the bottle continued to erupt with foam at me! I could see that although the fluid line was significantly reduced in the bottle, the head continued to develop and rise in the bottle until it was left with no option but to escape. It took over 5 minutes to properly pour two snifters of the Ithica 12.

I am not sure exactly what yeast strains that Ithica has used, although I would be very interested to find out, but they obviously really enjoyed this beer. And once given a taste of oxygen they burst back to life eating everything and creating CO2 as fast as they could. This was really very extraordinary.

Eventually, I was able to pour two well presented glasses and it did manage to create a very lovely beer - well, some may not describe it as lovely. With the last bit of sediment swirled and laid to rest in our glasses, the 12 formed a murky and cloudy maroon garnet beer with dark shades of golden brown, dark amber, burnt orange, and mahogany. The head, while much more subdued than before, was still a massive, airy pillow of foam resting contently on top this opaque, but very appetizing beer. The head was over two inches and showed dense carbonation towards the bottom, but large airy bubbles near the top. It was an pale egg shell color with an almond creamy off-white glaze. Very dramatic so far.

The nose was massively perfuming blasting complex Belgian yeasts, spice and dark ripe fruit at me. As I was hoping, the scent was a playground of flavor - dry dark chocolate, figs, raisins, caramel, light toffee, dark malts, pepper, a touch of citrus, earth and funk all came together in an ever tangling mixture of aroma. Hops were present bringing fresh fields and a touch of flowers, but mostly deep malt, spicy dried fruit and yeast dominate the air near this beer.

I gently lifted the dark and ominous beer to my mouth and let a deep and soothing wave of Belgian and American flavors rush over my palate. By Belgian and American I mean that its complexity, delicate flavors, and perfect aromas came in with a massive and never ending crush of exuberance. The spice and yeast is noticeable from start to finish, so once you get beyond that prepare for smooth and creamy dark malts bringing caramel, dates, prunes and zest. Apricots seem to meld with cocoa and light roast brining a soft but large earth sweetness to the party.

That was really what surprised and impressed me - there are massive and complex flavors here, but they are all on their own level perfectly crafted; they just run at you with an insane amount of excitement. This, along with the beer's premature foaming leads me to believe that it is still in its infancy - three, four or even eight years from now this beer could mature into an unrivaled vintage, and a prize in anyone's cellar.

But now, it still had much To offer. The mouthfeel was surprisingly smooth and gently carbonated - it made the head seem more like a krausen than head (Krausen is a foam that develops on the surface of a wort as the active yeast is fermenting it creating a slew of byproducts and flavors). After some funk and light tartness hums past the malty fruits and esters, a spicy and crisply dry finish quenches - it has earthy hop notes and floral yeast still raging inside it. The finish here is dry, but with much effort.

I am left with the taste of chocolate and caramel doused with a good amount of spicy and complex yeast. Mellow sweet fruits still fume off my tongue, as does rich malt. This Quad was exceptionally entertaining, slightly confusing, but very delicious. As much as I did enjoy the 12, it is not among my favorite of the style, although I am also left wondering how this will be in five years. The next few bottles that I can get my hands on will find their way into my cellar - thats for sure!

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Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Date: 15 December 2010
Glass: Standard 10oz snifter
Type: 750ml

Poured into two snifters, and shared with my father. Poured slightly aggressive for a 2-finger head, reducing to a film, with lacing covering ~80% of the glass. Color is cloudy dark brown with a beige head. Aroma of a heavy yet pleasant Belgian yeast strain, slight smoke, leather, candi sugar, toasted malt and raisins. Taste is splendid and complex. The Belgian yeast is subtle and not overpowering. Flavors follow of very sweet candi sugar, light smoke, sweet raisins, and lightly roasted malts.

This beer dries the palate like an expensive wine, begging my brain to reach for another sip. There is hardly hotness of alcohol...impressive for a 12% quad. Nicely done, Ithaca. You're quickly becoming my favorite brewery.

EDIT: I should have waited to review until I reached the end of the bottle. The last pour is very yeasty but very delicious, and adds a milk chocolate flavor to the beer.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

3 years in the cellar... now is your time, 12, now is your time...

Pours with a surprisingly healthy 1cm of creamy, tan head, over an opaque ruby to brown body. Head fades to thick ring that hangs around forever.

Aromas are full of sweetness and fruit. Deep, rich sugar-bread, which includes cinnamon spice, molasses, raisins, cherry, and a touch of orange spice.

Mouthfeel is insanely smooth, creamy, and rich. Tons of sweetness in the flavor, including red licorice, plums, cherry cola, milk chocolate, and oak. Darn tasty.

Maybe it's been too long since I reviewed a Quad, but I don't see how this averaged out in the 80's... I think this pup is pure 90's quality.

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Photo of axeman9182
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle, batch E!020, allowed to warm some before being poured into my Duvel tulip.

I crack open the bottle, and there's a massive gush and persistent foam over. It takes almost half an hour for the beer to fully settle down. When it does, it pours a color that dances between the expected plum and more of a burnt chestnut color. The light tan head is massive and impressive on the first pour, sticking around forever and leaving gobs of lacing. Subsequent pours are a bit less impressive though. Nose is a fairly nice blend of brown sugar, alcohol infused dark fruits, and a hint of spice. The flavor shows more of a shift towards caremlized brown sugar, which works well considering the beer is relatively dry for a quad. There's still plenty of rum soaked plums and raisins, along with just a touch of fig and clove. The body is a little bit light for the style. Carbonation is picture perfect, but I wish the overall mouthfeel came off a little bit creamier. All in all Ithaca's Twelve is pretty darn good beer. Especially after a year, as I think the alcohol presence in the flavor profile is picture perfect, enough to give a warming sensation without even hinting at a boozy quality. It's a very good quad, and a worthy celebration of another anniversary for Ithaca.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Monastary-style Quadrupel ale. Batch E!021.

A: The label best describes the coloring so I cannot take credit here, a chestnut pour that had glistening highlights of cadmium orange. Against backlighting the color appeared a dark ice-tea color with murky burgundy glimpses around the glass edges. The head is slight, about a finger high, pie crust in color, with a medium sense of retention.

S: The alcohol is very well mannered here on the nose for a quad with a defining touch of sherry and some barrel woodiness. After some agitation the alcohol tends to show though a bit more along with some dark fruit of prunes. My overall impression was on that was mixed, thankful for the restraint of such a large beer, but somehow still left me wanting more.

T: The flavor opens with a heavy show of malts laced with some Belgian candy sugar. Dark fruit of black cherries and plums add some spicy and sweet notes complimenting the warming alcohol and caramelized sugars. Spicy licorice, warm cola combine with the earthy and woodsy german hops. The finish finds a particular spiciness of fennel sweet mixing well with the sweet caramelized sweet palate. I absolutely love how the alcohol adds its own spiciness, with enough to be appreciated, but never distracts, from the other flavor and attributes. In the end were some smoky woody afterthoughts.

M: Thick luscious malt lie heavily on the tongue with a syrup like consistency. Warm, spicy feel on the inner cheeks while the swallow reveals boozy sweet dried rum.

D: The abv of 12% was never a hinderance or overbearing like many other quads and actually felt a few points lower. This one was more focused on the sweet malty nature with spicy alcohol notes that remains very manageable consumption wise. Easy drinking for a quad and highly enjoyable.

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Photo of mjaskula
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This bottle was a huge gusher. I had to leave it in the sink for a while, I might have lost a quarter of the bottle to foam. Other than that surprise this beer is pretty great.

Served in a sniffer. As expected from the gushing this beer pours with a giant tan head. As it falls it becomes rocky and clings to the glass very thickly, almost too thick to be called lace. The beer itself is dark brown thick and hazy.

The aroma seems thick dense and complex, it's sweet, malty, strong and alcoholic with dark fruits. The flavor is very sweet, and somewhat nutty and a bit alcoholic. There's a lot of fruit flavor: dark fruits, fig, prune, apple, and tropical fruits.

The mouthfeel is dry and clean, and even though it was a gusher it doesn't see to be highly carbonated. Maybe most of the carbonation left the beer earlier.

I really like this beer, I'm going to have to search out more ithaca beers, I haven't had that many.

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Photo of number1bum
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Upon cracking the cap on this one a huge hiss of carbonation had me scrambling toward the sink. I was sure this was going to be a gusher but it didn't quite reach the crown. The pour was a semi-dark brown with a big, fizzy head that quickly filled the glass. This was a slow pour, and reveals a beer that does not look as thick as I'd expect from a 12% quad. Retention is very good, with a creamy full lace and a rich coating on the sides of the glass. Edit: when I went back for my 2nd pour the foam had indeed reached and rolled over the crown; in fact it was bizarre because in addition to chunky foam on the side of the bottle there were also a couple of clumps of brown yeast sediment.

Smell is big and fruity, with lots of dark fruits, slightly sour cherries, a bit of raisin, and some green apple. Malt-wise there is some bready, slightly sweet caramel, a hint of smoke and some toast. Some nice yeast character too, which is spicy and floral and is undoubtedly contributing some of the fruity esters. Really nice, complex nose.

Taste is maybe not quite as complex as the nose, but still has a lot of character. Tastes of semi-sweet caramel malt and slightly toasty bread. Spicy yeast like the nose, but not as estery. The biggest difference is that it's not nearly as fruity as the smell. There is some dark fruit and a hint of apple but that's about it. Fruit comes out a bit more as it warms closer to room temp. Finish is smooth and clean.

Mouthfeel is exceptionally creamy and smooth, but it's also only a medium body and feels a bit too light for the strength of the beer. Carbonation is very active but does not detract from the creaminess of the beer. Would rate higher if it had a bit more meat to it.

This is a well done, tasty beer from Ithaca. Love the complexity of the nose although I wish it translated more fully to the palate. I wish I could say that this would be a good candidate for aging but given the carbonation issue and the gushing I can't imagine it doing anything but getting worse in that regard. Probably better to drink it now if you're holding it. Cheers to another great year IBC!

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Photo of asabreed
4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


I hate to use capital letters, but let me preface this quickly by saying a few things. I need to learn not to put bottles of beer on wine racks, especially beers that aren't corked, but I did it with this one two nights ago. As I was talking to a friend today on the phone, I picked up the bottle to read the label again, and I noticed my fingers were slightly wet, and the smell was beer, and the beer was indeed coming from the Twelve bottle.

Worried that this may have been a bad bottle, I decided not to screw around anymore, so I put it in the fridge for about 50 minutes and just opened it 10 minutes ago.

If you've read more reviews below, you'll know that this is pretty much a gusher, most likely because I imagine the champagne yeast levels weren't as tweaked as they needed to be as it was bottled.

I had to use a pint glass, my Brooklyn tulip, and a Samuel Smith 12 oz. nonic (all three clean glasses within reach of the cabinet) to combine pours before the carbonation stopped finally and slowly gushing out of the top.

Now, I'm pretty sure, due to the reviews below, that it's not just my bottle. So is this intentional? Did Ithaca put too much champagne yest in this sucker?

Not sure, but let's go ahead and get it reviewed, not that half the bottle has been sipped and transferred and finally all, so far, poured into the Brooklyn tulip.


Appearance: If you read what I wrote above, you know this is a gusher. That said, it's also a very pretty beer in the glass. Extremely dark red, almost opaque, with a huge lighter mocha-colored head that just erupts, growing rocky dense crags at the top of the body, and leaving crater-sized holes as it dissipates, along with raucous sheets and caverns of lacing clinging to the glass.

Smell: Belgian yeast and dark fruit esters dominate this beer, along with earthy and soil-like phenols coming through. There's definitely some unsweetened cocoa and chocolate malt presence too, along with some sweeter caramel. There also seems to be a huge sense of spice in here, but I imagine it's the different strains of yeast rather than spices, but the huge peppery tingles the nose a bit, in a good way.

Taste: Thinking of age, and I'm not one to usually say something this -- maybe because I just can't detect it -- but this one's definitely a little hot on the palate. I'm not sure if it's the alcohol I'm discerning, but you can definitely tell this is a strong brew. It doesn't take away from the experience, but it's definitely present here. Also, there are the dark berries from all the fruit esters, in addition to some citrus. A lot of spiciness from the yeast. Some nuanced caramel and chocolate sweeter malt flavors. And some nice bitterness from the hops at the end, lingering with the chocolate and sweeter flavors and the earthiness also from the yeast.

Mouthfeel: The champagne yeast and Trappist yeast really makes this wonderfully full and creamy and spritzy all at the same time. One of the best things about this beer, despite the initial gushing of the first few pours.

Drinkability: Will age mellow out the carbonation truly? If so, let this one sit in the basement, and DO NOT let it sit on a wine rack; make sure you keep it upright. I think I paid around $8 for the bottle, and to me, for something like this, that's a steal. I wonder if it would've made a difference if it were corked and caged instead of capped? I can't help being caught up with the carbonation issues, but I'd be really interested to open a bottle two years down the road and see what happens. Maybe grab two, but this is definitely more than worth a shot overall.

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Photo of Suds
4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark mahogany liquid with a tan head of medium height, this is an interesting beer. The smell isn't overly engaging. A little nutty malt scents and a touch of citric hops...some distant esters, but overall a restrained aroma. The taste, however, is spectacular...malty, toasted, moderately burnt grain and malt, complex and peppery, yeasty flavors. Chocolate and alcohol, tannic nut shells, dark malts, and spice. Great! The mouthfeel is full, with a warming sensation. Nice, lingering finish. All in all, this is a fine brew.

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Photo of elvisnj
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a generic US beer glass.

Pours nice head. Color is roasted chestnut. Clear and pretty.

Nose is all belgian yeast and fruity malt esters. Smells good.

Taste is a belgian yeast punch to the palate. Its a quad alright. Tastes of light fruits like apple and green grapes and caramel. Fruity esters are almost over the top. It clearly had a high fermentation temp. Alcohol is hidden behind all the yeast and esters.

Smooth mouth feel. Nice overall beer. Recommended.

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a recent trade. Thanks again Thanks again David...

Batch# E!028

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a RR snifter...

A - Pours a dark chestnut with a one finger off white head the dissipates at a hasty pace. Lace is minimal...

S - Plums, figs, and various other dark fruits. There is also a good amount of sweet malts to complement the dark fruits...

T - Lots of sweet notes up front. Caramel, and toffe being the most prominate. Finishes with figs, plums, a hint of alcohol, and a little spiciness in the aftertaste. Although the alcohol makes a presence in the finish, it is really smooth...

M - Medium bodied with a good amount of carboantion...

O - A little over carbonated for my likings, but still a really solid brew. Definitely something I would be interested in trying again...


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Photo of kwjd
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at Wegman's in Buffalo. Pours a murky brown colour with hints of amber. Thin white head dissipates fairly quickly. Smells of vanilla, brown sugar, plums, butterscotch and some mild chocolate. Quite a complex aroma. Flavour is very sweet, aftertaste is dominated by brown sugar. Smooth mouthfeel. This is quite easy to drink, I had the bomber by myself with no issue.

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Photo of SLeffler27
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fills an Ommegang snifter with a huge, creamy, khaki head that overflows and pushes out of the bottle after pouring. A patchy lacework is left after the head slowly diminishes over a cloudy, dark brown beer.

Emits a strong, farm funkiness with charred malt and light caramelized sugar. There is a mix of clove, nutmeg and light pepper. With warmth comes a light white wine aroma.

TWELVE is meaty with wine or sherry undertones. Roasted malt with figs, brown sugar and spices follow the nose. There is a light, brief finish and great balance.

A full body with less carbonation than was suggested during the pour. Alcohol is clearly present, though less than one would expect from the stated ABV. TWELVE is sticky and smooth simultaneously.

This one was easily consumed on a hit day while reading outside, but would go equally well with a hearty meal.

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Photo of BuddyPal
4.06/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Too sweet

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Photo of generallee
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 750ml bottle into a chalice glass. The label has a nice description of the beer and the Excelsior Series from Ithaca. There is also a batch number for the beer. (Batch # E!020)

Appearance: It pours with great carbonation (gusher) which fills the glass and makes for a huge light tan head. This tall head hangs on very well and makes lots of cool lacing patterns on the glass. Under the tall volumes head lays a very cloudy, dark mahogany beer, which is full of yeast sediment.

Smell: The aroma fills the nose with the foreshadowing of a sweet malty bomb. It is full of dark sweet caramelized maltiness and dust yeast.

Taste/Palate: There is a heavy sweetness with lots of dark caramel sweetness, sweet bread and some dark fruit like raisins and plum. It also has a layer of dusty and almost leather like earthy yeast as well. Hops are very distant on this beer and offer very little to balance the sweetness of the malt. It has a fairly heavy feel and full body with plenty of carbonation to help move the sweet malt moving along.

Notes: To me this beer comes of as more of a very sweet low hopped Barleywine with a slight Belgian twist. Still it is an interesting quadruple. I should also note that the 12%abv is very well hidden.

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Photo of biegaman
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The bottle apparently contains an orgy of Trappist yeasts but, at least for the first two pours, nothing would muck up this flawlessly clear, lustrously polished chestnut-colored beer. (Note: get to the bottom and it looks like a high-school science class experiment.) Transfer into the glass made a lot of fizzy noises but ultimately didn't result in any head.

Most quads have more flavour in their aroma than most other beers do their entire body but this one, not overly fragrant, smells relatively plain. What's there is good though. There is the expected sweetness but it actually favors savoriness and spice, showcasing a duo of something like (but not exactly) nutmeg and something like (but not exactly) sage.

12 has a flavour that threatens to become a little (or a lot) cloying with warmth, but with some chill on it it's delicious. A chewy, tootsie-roll like taste predominates with a butter tart flavour on the finish. As well as the conventional dried fruit notes (slightly understated in this example), it also has a root-beer or Jägermeister kind of root herbalness to it, with hints of citrus peel, liquorice, anise, poppy seeds, ginger, and juniper berries.

The aftertaste is considerably dry, with a pure cocoa-like sootiness and tea leaf bitterness. The stark herbal qualities again shine through with a significant earthiness and resemblance to the French liquor Chartreuse. And I'm not sure if it's the French malts or Belgian yeasts but there is a very musty, cellar-like character typical of Bières de Garde.

When you advertise emulating the great strong beers of Belgian Trappist monasteries you're pretty much sticking your neck out to be put in a noose. But, like the phenomenal Brute, Ithaca has not only succeeded but thrived where others have failed in trying to replicate the hardest of old-world recipes. Trust me, the monks don't do much better than this.

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A delicious wine bottle to end an evening with friends.

Musty dark brown with a rich haziness. A tan head of epic proportions formed upon pouring into my tulip, the fizz started bursting from within before I had even fully removed the cap. Dark notes of coffee and hazelnut play off walls of my glass even after the head has removed itself from the party...and fizzled down to a thin ring around the circumference. The beer is alive and ready to make an impact; the sediment is present and ready to be enjoyed.

Dark, rich, fruity esters that let me know this beer is going to be full bodied and strong. There is fruit from the yeast and a dirty earthiness from the strength. I am choosing to try this beer according to the recommendation of >50 degrees, the aroma profile has much more funk and character than it would being chilled.

Excellent beer, notes of fig, black tea, tobacco, raisin, yeast bread, sweet malt, and a dry, cranberry-like tartness towards the end. This beer would be excellent paired with a stew, I wish I had the opportunity to test my hypothesis. This is the type of taste that coats your tongue like a cigar and sticks around for the ride. Oily and rich, how else can you summarize a beer of this caliber.

The beer is excelsior, how could you not note its overall superiority to other beers. It's rich and potent, earthy and funky, yet balanced. I enjoy the lingering sweetness in tandem with a fruit dryness that has me both satiated and awaiting my next sip. There are offending sour and bitter notes that make the beer more interesting in contrast to the malt's richness and yeast's breadiness.

Fairly priced at $9, which is slightly below some Belgians (about on par with Ommegang's 3 philosophers). I would prefer a 3 philosophers over this beer, but it offers a slight variation that is refreshingly different and unique. The strength of this beer is masked well, therefore drink responsibly... I would have another and it's the perfect size to share with a companion.

Consumed in July of 2012 and still an outstanding quad.

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4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

This bottle leaked while traveling but lost only 2 or 3 ounces. The cap and foil remained perfectly intact however. I've read reports of gushing issues so this comes as no surprise.

750mL bottle to tulip. Batch E!020. Sampled 8/1/11.

A: The pour produces 3 fingers of light khaki brown head, frothy, bubbly and very long lasting. The body is a dark chestnut brown and completely opaque. Extremely solid appearance.

S: The label indicates French malts, German hops & Trappist yeast. Sounds awesome and smells pretty good too. Cookie, caramel and cocoa powder dominate the aroma with toasted bread and nut notes in the background.

T: The yeast imparts strong flavors of leather, earth and must. Hop flavor is minimal, adding woodsy qualities if anything. Adding sweetness is plum, quince and other general dark fruits. The integration of flavors works extremely well.

M: Disappointing mouthfeel. The body is rather light and carbonation rather high. Never good for a quad. Minerally texture with fine, fizzy, expansive effervescence. On a positive note, alcohol is nowhere to be found, although the bottle doesn't list the ABV. (It drinks like a 9.5%.)

O: The first half of the bottle was lackluster. Coming to room temperature and losing some of the excess carbonation really brought this beer into its own in the second half. Quite enjoyable with standout flavor.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very happy to be able to try this one, now I just gotta pop that 11 I have been on the lookout for and we will have the vertical in the books.

Pour is massive, nice medium brown color with a good bit of cloudiness and sediment in the bottom of the glass. Huge off white head rises up almost the width of the hand in a snifter before getting massively rocky and cratered and settling itself out nicely. Dark fruits and brown sugar like spices are dominating it here early on for me. Warming yields plums, figs, raisins, and a touch of alcohol that seems to prickle at the nose a touch. First sip is well carbonated and a touch hot, needs to mellow for a few months I would think. Rich raisins and plums, roasted malts, a touch of peat and leather in the back giving it some much needed balance. Nice dry finish here caps it off well leaving just a hint of fruit and sugary glaze on the palate until you come back for the next sip.

Overall not the biggest quad I have ever had but I really think it serves its purpose quite well. Give it some age I am sure this will end up being simply outstanding.

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Photo of soco7tyx7
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown with a ruby hue. Hazy with a super thick soapy off white head with some decent lacing. Leaves a heady film throughout

S - Dark fruits, black berries, warm caramel, spicy yeast

T - Sweet dark fruits, with a roasted quality. Earthy, spicy, and yeasty. Finishes with a touch of alcohol and some residual bitterness from that roast character

M - Smooth, medium champagne like body. Feels thick in the back of the mouth. Finishes with a bit of heat

D - Overall a very tasty Quad. I enjoyed drinking it, but it's definitely a sipping beer. It hits ya kinda quick so eat something before or with it. The alcohol, though detected is well disguised so watch out!

Notes: I think this one would age especially well. The alcohol could chill out a little and it would be interesting to taste how the roasted character and the high carbonation plays out after a few years

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Photo of twowheelssoar
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gusher warning! I lost about a sixth of the bottle in a few seconds. I aged this more than a year. Dark caramel colour, rich aroma of yeast and caramel and candi, and booze. Above average mouthfeel, rich, right on the style. Good spiciness. A sipper, still good drinkability.

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TWELVE from Ithaca Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.9 out of 5 with 143 ratings