Super Friends IPA | Ithaca Beer Company

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70 Ratings

Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company
New York, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
A Single Hop IPA featuring Citra that was fermented entirely with a proprietary blend of strains of Brettanomyces.

Added by akorsak on 08-02-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 70 |  Reviews: 51
Photo of Sean9689
4.35/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler shared with some of the Chicago crew.

A - Pours light golden color, white head, some lacing, thin cap.

S - Tropical fruit, brett, slight funk, hops, citrus notes.

T - A nice mix of hops and slight funk, orange zest, citrus notes, slightly bitter finish but the funk is there as well.

M - Light to medium, frothy carbonation, semi-dry finish.

D - I had a couple of pours from the growler. Overall, I really enjoyed this one and hope to have again in the future.

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Photo of Lukafer
4.24/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Had at the Indy Dark Lord Vertical/Big Stout taste-off, thanks guys!

Appearance is a clear gold with a good amount of carbonation. Smell is citrus hops! This beer smells fantastic! Taste is slight hops at front, a malty middle and a good solid hop finish, very smooth. This is a good tasting beer, but the way it smells had me drooling and the flavor didn't quite match up, still good though.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.3/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to aerozeppl for sending a growler for the Chicago crew to share. Served in a Lost Abbey Rastal Teku glass.

A - Pours with a finger of foam that settles to a thin cap and big chunky ring, leaving behind splotchy lace. Hazy peach body.

S - Musty brett, pineapple, dank weed, zesty citrus, some burnt sugar malt character. There's some funky and lightly plastic notes when it warms up, but they aren't overly invasive compared to the brett and Citra hop aromas.

T - Taste is more sweet tropical fruits, some zesty citrus hop bite, and a sugary malt backbone. There's some musty funk character but it's not as big as in the nose. Finish is lightly bitter. Probably more of a 4.25, but I'll round up as I was less generous elsewhere.

M - Nice carbonation spritz, medium body, more sticky and chewy. Not overly dry. Works well with the flavor profile, and hides the mystery alcohol content well.

D - This is pretty nice, but I don't think it's an A+ beer. Reminds me of very fresh 3767, but without the vinous and oak character. Pretty drinkable, but it's hard to have a baseline for this style. One of the top five brett IPAs I've ever had.

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Photo of alcstradamus
4.49/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Doug for this. I believe that this is one of the bottles that was given to the many collaborators behind this beer.

The pour is a murky golden yellow with an out of control monster head that engulfs my glass. It takes forever to subside, but I don't mind waiting since it is too cold anyway. After a few minutes, a marshmallow mountain of foam and spotty lacing remain.

The aroma is just an insane blast of floral and orange peel hoppiness. West Coast style for sure. I believe the Citra hop is used here and damn it leaves an impression. I do notice traces of the Brett underneath, but the hop aroma is so big it almost masks all the funk. Enough peeks through to add a layer of complexity and get my mouth watering. Incredible.

The flavor is a step back from the aroma, but not necessarily a step in the wrong direction. I didn't really want a hop blast out of this beer, and I didn't get it. I wanted to be able to taste the Brett, and I do. I think that the collaborators got exactly what they were looking for with this beer...a great experimental beer that is well balanced between the hops, malt, and wild yeast.

The body is medium/full for the style, and carbonation is pretty much perfect feeling in the mouth.

Overall, this beer is extremely good and very drinkable. Whatever the ABV is doesn't matter, I chugged my glass relatively quickly. It has tons of hop flavor but remains well balanced, and the wild yeast adds a layer of complexity which I desire (normally, lack of depth is the downfall for me in IPAs)

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Photo of largadeer
3.97/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared by nickd717. Thanks, Nick.

Murky dark amber body topped by a finger of white suds. Clarity and color could be better, but I won't dock it too much for that.

Big tropical fruit aroma, the brett really enhances the fruitiness from the citra hops. Pineapple, peach and mango backed by strong barnyard funk, this is unusual but nice.

Brett is much more prominent on the palate, lending a ton of musty, leathery funk. Tropical fruit flavors hover over the funk, bringing to mind ripe apricots, peaches, pineapples. Bitterness is moderate, never quite overwhelming the intense funk.

Pretty nice stuff, much better than Midnight Sun's brett-fermented IPA. I'm still not quite convinced that it's a winning combination, but this is certainly drinkable.

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Photo of STEG
4.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy amber-orange in color almost a light brown, not much head after a quick pour into a Sam Smiths Victorian Pint, probably due to the two day old 3/4 growler

(I sniped the last of the keg).

I can't accurately grade the head or the lacing so It'll just be on the color which is intriguing to me.

Smell has Brett, skunky hops, and blood oranges.

Taste has booze, blood orange, slightly piney hops and plums.

Mouthfeel is smooth with light carbonation, slightly syrupy as well.

Drinkability is good there's a bit of booze but otherwise not bad.

ATTN Ithaca:
Make this again, bottled preferably.

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Photo of HotHands
4.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Capped off a crazy night last night with this great beer. On tap at Pixel Lounge, in a tulip.

A - cloudy dark orange with small head because of the tall pour. Fine lacing.

S - fruity pineapple and grassy smells. Not sure where everyone is getting the cat urine thing from.

T - An explosion of tropical fruits - pineapple, grapefruit, lemon, orange. And oh man, there's sourness here too from the brett, and it works so well with the hops. Great combo. Everything's well balanced. I'm sure when the brewers first tasted this, their second thought was "why didn't we think of this before?" And their first was, "this is good stuff."

M - exactly as it should be. Great feel and carbonation. Just the right amount of body.

D - so, so drinkable. The brett balanced the bitterness so well that this is really easy drinking.

I want hoppy IPAs + brett to become a popular style, so bad. And if it does, it would probably be my favorite style. We need more beers like this!

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Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
4.12/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap @ Coles

A: Bright yellow with some orange tint, good lasting white head and noticeable lacing.

S: Cat urine, piney hops.

T: Nice hop hit in the front, spicy in the back. Sour notes mixed in the middle.

M: Medium bodied, ABV blended well and noticed without worry, great carbonation. Loosens up as it the beer gets warmer.

D: Kind of had a mini-session of it today, but I would say after 2 is plenty. The concept alone had my saliva running.


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Photo of JAramini
4.53/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Cole's. Ever since they announced that they got the kegs in I'd been checking their Facebook frequently to see when they'd tap it. Ended up running down and having a quick goblet as soon as I read it had been tapped.

Cloudy orange in color, quarter-inch of head.

I'm a little stuffy and didn't get a lot in the way of smell, but other reviewers rave about it - I'm going to go ahead and blame my nose on this one and not dock it too many points.

Tastes fruity and citrusy. A note of mustiness and bitter pine in the finish. The sour bite from the brett just adds a whole additional level to the flavor. The sour is not mouth-puckeringly overpowering but simply an additional flavor added into a perfectly-balanced mix.

Mouthfeel is stellar. Fine but active bubbles in this one. Very champagne-like in carbonation. Medium in thickness. Perfect for an IPA.

Drinkability is through the rough. I only had a 10 oz. goblet because I was just dropping in to taste it tonight. If I get back and it's still on I very well could be drinking it all night long. The sourness helps to make it not just a hop-bomb, but a really interesting beer that delivers something different with every sip. The carbonation lightens it up just enough to make drinkability off the charts.

This beer is deserving of the hype. I think they hit it completely out of the park. Essentially, if the concept of the beer sounds good to you, and sounds like something you might enjoy, I think you will absolutely enjoy it. It's not a sour-bomb, but it's not supposed to be. It's a slightly-soured IPA and it's close to perfect.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.12/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jdiddy for opening this one up. Pours a hazy, golden-orange with a frothy, quarter inch, off-white head. Nose is incredible - sweet citrus, orange, jasmine, floral notes, passion fruit, cat urine and a slightly herbaceous quality. Taste is much more subdued and considerably less sweet than suggested by the nose. Flavor profile is more earthy, less fruity, with a light lingering bitterness. There's also a Belgian IPA quality to this - perhaps in the yeast strain. Mouthfeel is light-medium, with an even and balanced carbonation and a semi-dry finish. A really nice beer with a great deal of complexity. I definitely enjoyed this IPA, but there are better ones out there - perhaps a little too much going on in this one, but well worth your time if the opportunity presents itself.

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Photo of Kendo
4.59/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a growler from Westmere Beverage ($24.99) in Guilderland on 8/20/10 (thanks pboegel for the heads up). Consumed on 8/21/10.

A: Poured into a Sierra Nevada Anniversary Ale pint glass. Body is hazy honey-amber with a small off-white head that settles quickly. Lots of very fine bubbles of carbonation visible.

S: Wow - really, really nice. Citrus, tropical fruit and a boatload of pineapple and grapefruit juice. Ever-so-slight funky-ness at first; poured it pretty cold, so I'm guessing that'll be more pronounced as it warms. . . . Sure enough, halfway down the glass and I get a lot more funk - not in a bad way at all; it adds to the character and makes you want to smell it more.

T: There's that pineapple juice from the nose. This is my first experience with the Citra hop, I believe, and I like it. I get a bit of apricot, reminds me of Sculpin a little. Also some tartness, maybe even sourness at times. Touch of spice at the back of the sip. Finishes with resiny pine lingering on the palate. As it warms, malt foundation makes an appearance underneath all the hoppy goodness, with a touch of honey sweetness.

M: Call it medium in heft. Carbonation is fine and soft.

D: Excellent. I like the flavors a lot and it goes down real easy.

Not sure I'd call this an American IPA; more of a Belgian IPA overloaded with American hops. Whatever you call it, it's interesting and well done.

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Photo of aerozeppl
4.82/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler from Westmere Beverage in Albany, NY.

A: Slightly hazy copper color. The beer pours like a Belgian IPA. Even the most careful pour yields 3-4 fingers of white head. Quite a bit of spotty lacing. A little bit of carbonation in my Ithaca tulip as well.

S: The nose is a delicious mix of bret and the citra hops. The bret is earthy and quite a bit of barnyard. The tastes I had at Belgium Comes to Cooperstown had more of a hop nose. This pour is more about the bret and funk. Little bit of citrus hiding behind all of it to give it a little bit of a normal IPA nose.

T: The taste in really interesting. I am torn between a Belgian IPA and an American Wild Ale. The bret is massive. Funky. The citra hops and bret just work so well together. Quite a bit of malt to sort of balance things out. I really like the taste of this beer.

M: For the massive head the carbonation is a little light. Medium bodied.

D: I really love this beer. A great collaboration but more importantly a good beer. A nice delicious Bret IPA. I am torn on the style however. Whatever it is this is a real treat.

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.77/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one wasn't on my radar...almost missed it. Thanks for the heads up Wes!! Pours a moderately pale amber color..quite a bit lighter that the image associated would let you think. HUGE two finger foamy, almost stiff, off white head that fades slowly leaving a nice amount of Belgian lacing behind..a solid 4.5. The smell is aggressive, sweet citrus orange pine tangerine pineapple..really nice!! The mouth feel is medium bodied smooth creamy..without a hoppy bite it seems almost understated (looking for something to gig this one on). It cleans up pretty quickly yet I can relate to Weswes' peppery finish. I absolutely love the taste; mirrors the elements of the nose quite nicely. This one is a really really nice drinker. I'm curious what the ABV turned out to be. It's sweet enough to make me think that it's got some weight to it, but it's very subtle to me. I'm going to back the drinkability down to coincide with the score that I gave the mouth. Seriously? This one is outta the park. $^%& love it!!
Great job Super Friends!

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Photo of israel
4.88/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Was able to have a growler picked up at the brewery!!!

A- Looking at this beer reminds me of unpasteurized cider; cloudy amber orange in appearance with plenty of carb bubbles quickly rising to the top!!! Starts off with a beautiful dense head that fades to a skimming with impressive lacing...

S- Sweet citra aroma with what I can only describe as a faint straw aroma presumably from the brett. Really a very clean and balanced smelling beer.

T- The aroma leads perfectly into the overall flavor of this beer, it seems so natural and flowing, if that makes sense. Bright flavors with some spice mingled amongst it all, the single hop is a nice touch and I feel adds to the cleanliness of this beer.

M- This beer is a pleasure to have in my mouth, LOL. silky smooth with a medium body that sits on the edge of oily and dry.

D- If only this beer was year round I can't stop drinking this one, so maybe it's good it's not year round, but please, please, please bring it back again. Outstanding!!!!

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Photo of jameswaldo
4.78/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted this Super Friends IPA at Ithaca Beer's tasting room Thursday and was so blown away by its total deliciousness I had to hurry back yesterday with two growlers to taste it again and to make sure I brought a gallon home before our aficionados drink it all up. Again yesterday I tasted it fresh poured from tap, this time pairing it with Ithaca's Flower Power, which is my favorite IPA there. I've uploaded pixels of a clear glass growler full of it, with just one fresh home-grown hop blossom picked yesterday morning floating on top, making brew up there a bit yellower than it was before. The natural color of this super IPA is around 26 SRM, very hazy with big-time hops and still-busy brett beasties. I put that fresh hop in there to see if my only reservation about this amazing brew might be clearer when I compare the undoctored growler with this one pictured (if you Beer Advocates will allow the license): I prefer complex hopping in my IPAs, and though citra goes very very very well in this one, it's still just one lonely gorgeous hop singing its own yodeling bitter tangeriney tango and if it could possibly be improved, I imagine just a wee bit of fresh-picked dry-hopping might do the trick.
But not to get ahead of the standard methodical review:
Appearance could not possibly be improved, even without any fresh dryhopping in the growler: we've got a rich dark hazy amber that pours a highly excited thick dense head. The pint glass I used last night kept a good persistent head for the entire 15 minutes it took me to drink it: bubbling constantly like murky champagne to keep foam high, lacing so persistent you might be tempted to use solvents to get your glass clean afterwards (don't!).
Smell of citra and barnyard yeast and ethanol and brown sugary malt very nicely balanced, though when I compare this smell to Ithaca Flower Power, I miss the more complex and varied hops aroma in my all-time favorite hops medley.
The taste is so perfectly delicately deliciously balanced, with the big citra whack taking on the funky brett and waltzing around the amber malt sugars, you have to wish this could be a year-round brew.
Mouthfeel creamy bitter oily effervescent huge and satisfying, with hops tang persistent about a half-hour afterwards. I bike to the brewery, then haul growlers up East Hill, where drymouth sometimes needs a squirt or two from my frame-held water bottle, but twice uphill Thursday and Friday afternoon I was glad to be panting through the hops aftertaste. (Yes, from Flower Power, too, but who wants to quibble when such fine hopping holds?)
I find Super Friends drinkability limited only because it may have all been drunk by the time you're reading this. Sorry! Beg the brewers to do it again!

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Photo of mrandypandy
4.82/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewery into a sampler glass, and from a growler as well.

A- Pours a medium yellow/orange. BIG foamy white head leaves excellent lacing. Lively.
S- Exceptional. A magnificient combination of earthy barnyard funk from the brett, and fruity citrus hops from the citra.
T- Phenominal. Just like the aroma the slight brett characters come out and play wonderfly with the hoppy citrus notes. I may have a new favorite IPA.
M- Medium body, decent carbonation, very smooth. Goes down easy.
D- Through the roof. Everything about this beer meshes together so well, and I wanted to keep drinking more.

Overall - I went to the brewery and wasn't sure what to expect, but was more than pleasantly surprised with all of Ithaca's offerings. Super Friends, however, stole the show. I walked out with two growlers and wished I could have taken more back with me.

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Photo of PBoegel
4.92/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Five pours into the mini Duvel tulip at BCTC @ Brewery Ommegang on 7/31.

Bright golden orange with a fluffy white head, dense and lacy.

Smell is just flush with tropical fruit, mango, pineapple, pine sap completely outstanding crisp hop profile, clean malt no esters, outrageous.

The flavor profile was spicy pineapple citrus, sharp and bright, more tropical fruit and pine. Hops clearly dominate the flavor but the malt is again like in aroma very crisp and clean. Nicely bittered with some good sharp cleansing bitterness.

Extremely smooth and pleasing American IPA, bright hops and just intense aromas and flavors.

More please.

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Photo of tedstertm
4.82/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful amber color with ample and long-lasting dark creamy head. Smells of sweet sweet citra and a caramel. Tastes like a smack of grapefruit and fruit punch all so incredibly hoppy. Just a touch of sweetness to stand up to these incredible hop flavors. The drink enters your mouth with a blast of oil and the perfect heaviness for the amount of sugar and hops. I could drink this all night. It's pretty much the freshest flower power I've ever had x2 only better. Good going everyone who was involved in making this beer.

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Photo of WesWes
4.72/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beer pours a hazy, dark golden/amber color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is awesome! It has a killer hop aroma. It's citrusy as hell with a wonderful yeast character. It's lightly soured, but not enough to hide any hop character. The malt bill provides adequate balance and serves as an excellent base. The taste is incredible. It has a monster hop bite up front laid over a base of pale, crystal, and possibly melanoidan malts. It goes down very smooth with a resinating hop taste and a touch of Brett sourness. I love that the sourness is subtle and not over the top . It has almost a farmhouse funk to it, like a good saison. It's hoppy with a bit of peppery character in the finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an exceptional beer. It definitely exceeded my expectations. We need more brewer collaborations like this. Great work Super Friends!!

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Photo of akorsak
4.47/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A Single Hop IPA featuring Citra, Super Friends was fermented entirely with a proprietary blend of strains of Brettanomyces provided by Phil Leinhart (Ommegang), Scott Vaccaro (Capt. Lawrence), Casey Hughes (Flying Fish), Spencer Niebuhr (Southampton), Jeff O'Neil and Eric Kugeman (Ithaca), and Steve Altimari (formerly of Valley Brewing Co).

A: The IPA is a brilliant golden yellow color, just a tad hazy. Each glass was accompanied by a finger or so of dense white head.

S: The combination of young brett strains and citra is knock-out. The citra is ripe grapefruit, dripping with oily juices. The brett, just a month or so at work, has a funky edge but it hasn't taken control of the IPA yet.

T: This is where the ale gets you. The citra is so intense, so sweet that it's hard not to like the ale. That hoppiness isn't as bitter as it is sweet and oily. The pale malts in the base aren't much of a factor, although they keep the ale together. The brett, clearly nowhere near done its job, adds just enough of a musty funk to be noticed (and appreciated). The citra lingers long though.

M: The mouthfeel, oily bitter with a touch of funk, works surprisingly well. It remains light and airy throughout.

D: The best in show at Cooperstown, a grapefruit blast of hops atop a still young brett funk. The citra was a wise choice, delicious and sweet. An excellent collaboration.

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Super Friends IPA from Ithaca Beer Company
Beer rating: 4.46 out of 5 with 70 ratings