Illumination | Central Waters Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
90
outstanding
924 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
IlluminationIllumination
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co.
Wisconsin, United States
centralwaters.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by CaptainIPA on 06-01-2010

BEER STATS
Ratings:
924
Reviews:
268
Avg:
4.03
pDev:
9.93%
 
 
Wants:
94
Gots:
95
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 924 |  Reviews: 268
Photo of Tone
3.81/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, copper color. 1/3 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of citrus hops, floral hops, sweet malt, hint of pine, and a hint of alcohol. Fits the style of an American Double / Imperial IPA. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. There is also a strong bitterness level. Tastes of citrus hops, floral hops, sweet malt, strong pine, and alcohol. Overall, strong and fresh flavors, good appearance, aroma, and body.

 487 characters

Photo of malfunxion
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Duff27
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Thick(!) near two-finger foam that lasts quite awhile. Pleasant lacing down all sides of the glass. Copper/light red color. Beautiful.

S- Hoppy, makes my nose happy. Citrus.

T- More bitter citrus hoppiness...just one of the things I love most about DIPAs. Some alcohol in the aftertaste but that's just to remind you that you shouldn't be drinking these all afternoon long.

M- Smooth. Medium carbonation.

D/O- As with any imperial style beer, the drinkability suffers a tad when you can only drink so much before your taste buds are shot and you don't taste anything anyways. Overall, a solid solid performance by Central Waters. This is the third or fourth brew I've had from them and they still deserve my attention.

 724 characters

Photo of BeerOps
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.14/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Central Waters Illumination Double I.P.A. India Pale Ale. "Can you say palate wrecker? This double IPA comes in at 108 IBUs as hoppy as it gets with a mouthful of citrus flavors. Grab one today and illuminate your senses." 9% ALC./VOL. Brewed in Amherst, WI.

Well, I've already grabbed, so let's start illuminating. Clouded, apricot-ish hue, smallish head. Looking okay, I'm ready to go.

Oooo! Deep and dank hop bitterness all up in the nose. A massive attack of citrus and pine, grapefruit, orange and lime. Small sweet notes, amid the big, bad bitterness.

Tasting it: Boom, boom, boom. Bitter hop attack spread all over the palate. Slamalamadingdong. Getting tropical now, some pineapple-ish elements emerge, still with a unrelenting hop smack-up.

I like this. Good, if not great. Enjoyable, if not "the best."

 816 characters

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle received in a trade. Poured into my Southern Tier tulip.

Pours a golden hazy copper amber color. 2 inch head forms, good lacing down the glass.

Smells like sharp dank pine needles, grapefruit, pineapple, and orange.

Similar taste. Palate shredding bitterness here from the pine and grapefruit- large amounts of both. A little bit of an alcohol burn on the mouth with each sip. No real malt character that I can detect.

Full bodied, crisp dry mouthfeel. Well carbonated.

A great IPA, and a great extra to receive in a trade. Loved it.

 545 characters

Photo of smartassboiler
4/5  rDev -0.7%

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

Picked this up at Woodman's in Kenosha. Was sort of surprised to see a hoppy brew out of Wisconsin, but figured I might as well give it a shot. Label is notched in May, but the first reviews started trickling in after June 1st, so this is probably six weeks old now. Served in my trusty Kuhnhenn tulip.

A - Pours with two fingers of orange-tinged foam that slowly dissipate to a thick, chunky, cap. Nice splotchy lacing is left behind. The body is a hazed light amber color, with tiny bubbles racing up the center of the glass.

S - Lots of citrus zest, tropical fruits, and a hint of pine and grass. Malt character is present, but imparts mostly sugar cookie and a touch of brown sugar as well. Not much in the way of obvious alcohol.

T - Taste is a little less complex, with lots of grapefruit rind and potent bitterness that lingers well past the post. There's a glimmer of tropical fruits at the tip of the tongue, but blink and you'll miss them. There's actually less malt here than in the nose.

M - Tingly carbonation, exceptional dryness, and some definite resinous residual qualities. A touch warming after a half-glass. Body is medium in weight.

D - The bitterness gets somewhat oppressive here. I'm OK with palate-bruising beers, but I tend to need a little more flavor to make it session-worthy. Still, it was pretty enjoyable and I'd be glad to have another bottle down the road.

 1,395 characters

Photo of IPAchris
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of a77cj7
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Gonzoillini
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of IrishColonial
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of drabmuh
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer poured from a bottle into a bruery tulip glass. Beer is amber and slightly hazy. Forms a big head of small bubbles that leaves some lacing on the glass but the overall carbonation level is low.

Beer smells slightly piny hoppy and quite malty. There is almost a wheat edge to it.

The beer is medium bodied and quite malty but the malt is not the star. There is great hop character on the mid and late palate of this beer and overall the malt does well to balance it out. I'm not one of those guys that wants a balanced IPA usually, I'm looking for hops hops and more hops, but the maltiness of this one made it more drinkable and enjoyable.

 646 characters

Photo of Sweffin
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Rochefort10nh
5/5  rDev +24.1%

Photo of tempest
3.48/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Label notch tells me this was bottled in May. The hop character is really fruity and not terribly bitter, reminding me a lot of the big-hops beers from Avery. Pineapple dominated the hops with just a little citrus and spice round the edges. There's also a smooth bready malt backbone providing a bit of balance, but I think it's too much.

 338 characters

Photo of redfox405
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of brandoman63
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of dar482
4.41/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The beer comes in a beautiful pink grape fruit color. Something not seen in IPAs.

The aroma has bitter grapefruit juice, a papaya, citrus peel, a light spicy herbal, a candy sweetness.

The beer in front has bitter pineapple, lots of grapefruit juice, onto a burst of perfumey floral, almost like drinking perfume. A light bready malt in the middle. The back has lots of resinous bitter pine, but not abrasive or too aggressive.

A clean drinking beer as the alcohol is absolutely hidden and this drinks a point or two below its ABV.

 535 characters

Photo of Stinkypuss
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Pours a moderately hazed orange color with a white head. Some lace is left behind on the glass. Aroma is floral and citrusy with a hint of pine. The taste is like dandelion with so much floral but backed by citrus and pine. Floral, bitter and resinous. Medium bodied, well carbonated, semi dry with the sharp hop bite. Overall, an above average brew that is worthy of the praise.

 387 characters

Photo of eawolff99
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

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

12oz bottle into a weyerbacher tulip glass on the late late.

A slight hiss when the cap is popped CWIDIPA pours a bright orange color with a golden glaze within. Some sediment towards the end of the bottle makes it a shade darker. A small cap leading to a small island, no stick.

Smelling the hops from the bottle, in the tulip this just screams HOPS and lots of them. Citrus over malt, in fact I cant really detect any malt in the nose. Some grapefruit and a bail of pine. A splash of alcohol. Pretty one demensional.

This is a hop bomb in every sense of the word. Hop juice with citrus including alot of grapefruit. That's about it for the citrus, not a melange of tropics like the west coast runners. Pine is big and there is some alcohol in the back end. I cant make out any malt.

The hop juice sticks to the mouth and does not quit, long after taste of astringent grapefruit and pine needles. Swish this around a bit in the mouth and watch lupulus take hold. Barely any relief in the end with no bisquit malt or the like to even things out. This is not necessarily a bad thing though, just different. Body is medium and is carbed up nice like. Bitter as all hell.

At 109 IBU's I expected this to scorch the mouth and boy did it. All in all it's a double I that could use a layer or two more of different flavor. One sided, astringent, alcohol on the tounge. Some malt might help. Even though it's a bit unbalanced, I appriciate the biggness of it and I say to myself 'it is what it is'. Two steps away from being a total palate wrecker.

 1,546 characters

Photo of John_M
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at TJ's the other day.

The beer pours a copper orange color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is also fairly attractive, showcasing orange citrus and considerable tropical fruit. Given the aroma profile with this beer, I was sort of expecting a sweeter style DIPA, and that's pretty much what I got. There is a lot of tropical fruit flavor in this beer, and it tended to overwhelm the hoppy bitterness. There was some bitterness on the finish, and I appreciate the fact that this beer isn't too boozy (a frequent problem with sweeter style DIPA's), but still.... I really felt the sweet malt in this beer dominated the flavor profile, to the point it was a bit difficult to drink. Mouthfeel was medium bodied to full, with a fairly long, malty, slightly bitter finish.

A decent DIPA, but just not made in the style that I appreciate.

 854 characters

Photo of Latarnik
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Illumination from Central Waters Brewing Co.
4.03 out of 5 based on 924 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.