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Cambridge House Abijah Rowe IPA | The Cambridge House Brewpub

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very good
40 Reviews
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Brewed by:
The Cambridge House Brewpub
Connecticut, United States

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Traditional English India Pale Ale brewed with all English malt & hopped with a blend of English & American hops. High in strength, bitterness & aroma.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-31-2005

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Reviews: 40 | Ratings: 55
Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at the brewpub. A mild c-hop taste, and aroma. Golden coloured body that is also somewhat honeyish. A dash of whitish head on top, that also leaves lace down the sides. Carbonation is right there. Served a little too cold. Tasty and drinkable enough, though nothing exceptional. Good thing I did not look at scores first.

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Photo of brentk56
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Arrives with a cloudy apricot nectar color and an inch of a head that sheets the pint glass with lace

Smell: Pithy aroma with an underlying cracker malt aspect

Taste: Combines the English and American elements quite well as the hops dominate from the opening, with a combination of earthy and pithy flavors; the subtle undertones of cracker malt add a nice balancing effect

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A very nicely balanced beer that has a rather unique hop profile

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.53/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ah, one of the best beers I've ever had. This IPA should be the basis of how all other IPAs should be brewed. The aroma and taste are so flavorful and perfect. Perfectly balanced and super smooth and so damn hoppy. I could really drink this all day and night. I hope this stuff can get bottled ASAP!

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.06/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Huhzubendah for bringing over an uber-fresh growler of this. Unfortunately, it was a bit of a disappointment. Served in a Captain Lawrence tulip.

Pours a nice copper color with a good off white head that sticks around for a bit. Pretty nice head with some sticky lacing as it goes down. The nose is okay, slightly vegetal. Other than that, there are some floral and citrus hops, though those tend toward the background with a bit of malt there as well. The flavor is also slightly like cooked vegetables and there could be a bit of oxidation. Perhaps an issue with their growlering technique, as this growler was a few days old when consumed, taped, and had a nice hiss when it was opened. Aside from that, the hops weren't terribly present. What was there was pretty nice, but it was quite mild, even for something labeled as an EIPA. Feel was moderately bitter with a bit of spice. Moderately-dry finish. Just okay.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.77/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

So happy to finally be able to try this one. It has been on my wants list for like two years I think. A fresh growler sent down to me by a most kind BA, I now can cross another one of the list. Served cold and poured into several pint glasses throughout the day, this one was consumed on 06/14/2009.

The pour was very clean, nice deep orange amber in color with a good bit of carbonation streaking up toward the surface throughout the pour. Nice little head of white sitting right up on top let down to a nice bit of lacing across the sides. Crisp, ripe aroma of citrus tears through the air at the very first moment. Lots of pineapple here, orange peel, lemon and a wonderful bright aroma. Fresh hops just roll across the tongue as the bite of resin settles in. Clean taste here, with lots of pineapple and grapefruit leading the way. I wait for it to mellow, to balance, but it keeps on with the huge hop bite. Finally a touch of sweet, biscuit flavor comes in and smoothes it out before it fades away with the last little bit of fresh flavor drying out the tongue at the very end. Delicious, and unbelievably session able, this was a killer IPA, with a smooth, light body and nearly hidden ABV.

Overall worth every ounce of praise it gets. It was super fresh, super flavorful, and just super drinkable, this was literally one of the best in the style I have had in a very, very long time!

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.06/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Growler graciously sent to me by hobbie100. Thanks Richard!

The beer is mostly clear and yellow hued. The head is 1/4" thick and leaves a tiny bit of lacing behind. The aroma brings toast and hops, along with a dank vegetal scent. The taste is a bit disappointing, as I was really hoping for an English IPA I could thoroughly enjoy. Slightly oxidized with a boiled vegetable presence. Medium-thin in body with moderate carbonation. Overall, not a repeat. Perhaps this batch is different than the one folks were raving about, as I just don't see this beer being the top of the style.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.38/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewpub.
Comes to the table a hazy gold with a small white head that leaves lots of lace. Nice sweet caramel and light fruit with aromas of resinous pine and grapefruit pith. The flavor is sweet caramel, light fruits and a touch of diacytyl. Before the resinous citrus pith onslaught commences. Its a touch bitter at times. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet resinous mouthfeel. English American IPA hybrid that does neither very well.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Walken for sending a growler of this stuff my way - unfortunately I was out of town when it reached me, so the growler is verging on two weeks old. Shared with Dave (d0b) and served in a Dogfish pint glass with an unusual shape.

A - My pour was a lot more attractive than Dave's for whatever reason. Two fingers of dark blonde foam that quickly dissipated down to one finger then stuck around for a while. A bit of spotty lacing. Transparent coppery orange-red body. I'm gonna give this a bit of a break, considering how long it sat in the fridge, although most other reviews seem to be kind of indifferent to the appearance.

S - Big citrus grapefruit hoppiness, with notes of dank weed, grass, pine, and well balanced with toffee and dough maltiness. Even though Cambridge House calls this an English IPA, it smells a lot like a reasonably balanced America IPA. Whatever it is, it smells pretty delicious.

T - Taste is a step down, with less complexity and juicy hoppiness. There is still some pine and earthiness that is balanced by the mildly sweet toffee/bready malts. Plenty of residual bitterness in the aftertaste, which was surprising but welcome.

M - Lighter side of medium bodied, with a touch of carbonation tingle, and a decent amount of residual stickiness. Well-hidden ABV - I wouldn't have guessed it was this high; figured it was more 5 to 6% or so.

D - The bitterness gets a little heavy by the end of a few pints, but otherwise it's eminently drinkable with the moderate carbonation and ABV. Good stuff, but I'm not sure about all the hype on this one. The growler let out a nice hiss, so I can't believe it's super different from the tap. However, I'll re-evaluate if I ever get to CT to try it out in person.

More of a EIPA/AIPA hybrid than the cited "traditional English IPA", but well worth trying.

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Photo of drabmuh
2.64/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Growler provided by the other Matt. Thanks.

Beer is amber and mostly clear with a thin wispy head that leaves no lacing, carbonation low.

Aroma is the first sign that something is wrong, it almost is solventy and stingy.

Beer is harsh, oddly spicy, the hops have been damaged somehow. Maybe they don't know how to fill growlers there it tastes oxidized, rough, harsh. I drank about 4 ounces and that was it. Second bad English IPA from a growler in as many months. I may never try another EIPA from a growler again.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
2.9/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Was on the ACBF list but was listed as just their Cambridge House IPA at the ACBF. Seems that Beer Advocate also calls these one in the same.

A-Pours a cloudy orange color. Sample cup limits my assessment of the other portions of the appearance.

S-Very bland. Soft maltiness and a diluted hoppiness. Bland as bland gets.

T-The same. Just bland and boring. Almost like one of my buddies homebrew IPAs. The skeleton is there but its merely a loose interpretation of a good brew.

M-Soft carbonation. Lacks bitterness.

O/D-This beer must have gone way downhill since their first batches. This was not what I was looking for at all. If this is Abijah Rowe then its a huge letdown. I may call the brewery to see if this was actually it. If it was said beer, next time I am in CT I may need to revisit it a and give this beer the benefit of the doubt.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.59/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler filled at the brewpub.

First imperial pint pours with a 1/2" white head over the clear orangey amber brew. Head recedes slowly, with sporadic but ample lacing. Aroma is sweet underneath, but the show is all about the totally dominant fresh green hops character, pine in your face. Taste follows, enough malt character to support the large amounts of flavorful hops. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both very pleasing. Great stuff!

And to think this was only an afterthought fill when I couldn't get Big Hoppy to go...

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Photo of DrJay
3.63/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Clear orange with a beige cap, chunky lacing and good head retention. Hoppy aroma, citrus and herbal, a bit catty, with some caramel character. Medium/low bitterness that grew and lingered in the finish. Notes of caramel, earthy and herbal hops throughout. Medium bodied, solid malt backbone, moderate carbonation with a bit of creaminess to the texture, off-dry in the finish. An easy drinking beer with an English character.

 426 characters

Photo of Boto
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Draught: This just came on line yesterday. The beer is a very cloudy brew, with a slightly orangish color. The nose is definitely hoppy: piney hops are the most evident contributor. The piney taste is quite evident, but I didn't find it to be overly bitter. A good medium body behind the hops, with no real sweetness to the taste. Very Good!

 341 characters

Photo of sulldaddy
4.07/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I sampled this beer on a recent visit to the pub.
Served in an English Pint glass chilled. The beer arrives with a hazy orange minimal edge layer of off white head.
Aroma is rindy grapefruit and some sappy pine as well with some general "hoppyness" also.
First sip reveals a very fine fizzy carbonation and average body.
The flavor is caramel up front but rolls quickly to hops with pine and grapefruit showing up again. The finish is sticky and bitter and also dries my palate after each swallow. No hint of ABV, an easy drinker. Nice IPA.

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Photo of Omnium
3.71/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bomber > Pint Glass

A - Pours almost all head, took four pours to get a glass, after it finally settles you get an amber gold color, thick marshmallowy head thick lacing.
S - Aroma is tart with citrus, grapefruit, caramel malt, candied orange, big floral notes.
T - Taste is very bitter and dry. Big dry citrus bite, floral notes, caramel and bread. The bitterness gets a bit soapy.
M - Overly dry and bitter.
O - This is just too much big bold assertive qualities that are overkill to make this a good IPA.

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Photo of Damian
4.19/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drank on cask at The Cambridge House, Granby, CT
Served in a 10 oz. nonic

The beer poured a hazy, orangey-amber color with a sudsy looking cap of bubbles that quickly dissolved.

The aroma was pungently hoppy, fruity and sweet. Peaches, apricots, citrus and tropical fruits (mango and pineapple) were rather apparent. Sweet caramel malts were noticeable as well.

The taste was hoppy and robust yet balanced. A touch of malty sweetness appeared up front before the hops took over. Grapefruit dominated the hop flavor profile. Tangerines and orange peel were noticeable as well. Juicy and sweet. Slightly grassy. The finish was piney and resiny - pithy, dry and moderately bitter with a lingering hop aftertaste.

The mouthfeel was medium bodied and somewhat syrupy with a fine, barely noticeable (typical for a cask ale) effervescence.

Cambridge House IPA (as it is now called) is a terrific all-around IPA. I was glad to have the opportunity to try it as a cask ale and would love to sample it again on-tap.

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Photo of far333
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Hazy dark apricot colored with a low beige orangey head. Inviting aroma of sweet citrus, not much malt coming through. Flavor is immediately sweet tangerine hops, and this flavor remains consistent through every sip through the entire glass. No malt really. The citrus hops fill the mouth, very smooth, not biting. It only gets the slightest bit bitter in the finish when a sharp orange peel bitter emerges and lingers in the back of the mouth. Mouthfeel is a little slick, doesn't seem overly carbonated. If you like citrusy hops (and I do) you'll enjoy this one.

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Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at the Cambridge House Brewpub in Granby, Conn.

A: Poured a hazy, golden orange color with a thin veil of white foam and a lively sense of carbonation about it. Lacing was minimal but a thin ring of foam endured most of the brew.

S: Smells a bit citrusy sweet, with a definite pine and cloven hop aroma.

T: Taste is a little citric and sweet up front, with clean toasted malt and a little spicy clove/citrus taste. In come the resinous piney hop flavors, which seem to cool and flow a bit better becaus eof the lighter base malts. Satisfying and drinkable.

M: Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, prickly to the tongue and a little sticky towards the finish.

D: A very sessionable IPA and one that might appeal to the masses as a lighter tasting IPA with full hop presence. The lighter citrus notes do wonders to balance the solid hop agressiveness in the ale.

A great IPA from a local brewpub. I'll have to keep a growler packed with me next visit and take some of this one to go. Now, if only Torrington could get its act together sooner, I could bring home said delicious ale to the masses with haste.

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Photo of connecticutpoet
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had with the sampler for my birthday.

This was a pleasant light orange-brown beer with a low head, with a lot of lace. Interesting color for an IPA, kind of intriguing.

Aroma was of very citrusy hops. A rather good, balanced nose.

Taste was of bitter hops, with a medium-light malt backbone. Well supported, but could have used a little mor hop depth.

Mouthfeel was good, not too thin, a little mouth-puckering.

Drinkability was quite good... easy to see why this one was a gold medal winner.

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Photo of NEhophead
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A creamy bright white head that becomes plastered to the pint glass' sides. Layered and ringed lacing to the last sip. A hazy burnt tiger's eye orange in color.

Oily, resiny, pine intensified hop aromatics. A touch of caramel sweetness, but the aroma is 100% oily/juicy hop tones.

Pine and a touch of cedar best describe this IPA's hop character. A slick touch of alcohol is well balanced with the hop intensity. Some lemon and caramel give way to a highly bitter, yet surprisingly drinkable flavor. Finish is filled with hop resin and pine.

Medium bodied; a mouthful of hops, yet eerily light and smooth on the palate.

Wonderfully drinkable for a 7.4% version of the style. The power of the hops doesn't wreck the tastebuds and the aftertaste is quick and wafery. A very good crack at an English/American hybrid of the style.

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Photo of DNICE555
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On-tap at the brewpub served in an english pint glass.

Hazy orange color with about a finger slightly off white head. Nice lacing which fades away quickly.

Smells of citrus hops, some pine notes but not overly piney, some nice hops.

They did a very good job with this ipa. The taste is very well balanced. Nice smooth hops with citrus and pine undertones. The hops are very prominent but nothing overpowering. I detect very little malt in this ipa. It's nice and crisp with a dry finish. Goes back very easily. They list a 6.3 ABV for this batch and I can barley sense the alchohol. A solid brew.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ha! An understated IPA. Not one of those American IPA's where the brewer just throws in buckets of hops to try and numb the tastebuds. It is rather much more malty with a bitterness that is more puppy nip than doggy bite. Rather than get any "first" flavors, this beer is consistent from the very beginning of the sip through the finish. Malty sweet with a slight hop bitter/citrus presence. Only a presence because it is so nicely understated. Nose is full of pleasant piney aromas. Medium body with a slightly oily finish. Poured a slight off orange with a thin white head. This is simply a great and easy drinking IPA. If it were not for the 7.4% ABV this would easily be a session beer.

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

7.4% according to the chalkboard, 1.065 OG.

pours a cloudy, reddish orange with sticky lace and struggling bubbles. pleasantly cloudy. smells hoppy and roasty with sweet malt backup. dense and bitter with a serious lasting aftertaste. no fruit character here, no citrus.. all malt and hops. drinkable though, and a thoroughly enjoyable brew.

edit: this brew is so much better now (2008) and i promise to eventually get around to re-reviewing.

 444 characters

Photo of meathookjones
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly murky copper body with a quick rising light tan head that almost overflows. Think rings of lace were left clinging to the glass long after the growler was finished. Big hoppy nose with plenty of piney, floral and citric hops. Light sweet and toasted malts peaked though. Bitter floral hops bite you first as you take a sip with some mild caramel sweetness following. Citric and piney notes covering some toasty malt through the middle. Great dry bitter finish that leaves you wanting more. Solid mouthfeel with plenty of hop prickliness raking at your tongue. Great drinkability here. A great all around IPA that is plenty hoppy but still stays in control.

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Photo of warriorsoul
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to goodbyeohio for the growler...
Pours a very cloudy, worn copper color with a full finger and a half of white head...disappears quickly and leaves some thick lacing that has tremendous cling.
Fantastic smell coming from this one...huge fruity and piney hops, bubblegum, cotton candy, and a sweetness like I have never experienced in an IPA.
The taste is great...perfectly balanced with a crushing bitterness that lasts from first taste to the lingering aftertaste. The sweetness is nowhere to be found, but by no means unbalanced.
Very surprised to see this offering topping 7%, but it will not slow me from killing this growler in a couple hours.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and carbonation is superb.
A solid beer from a place I need to visit real soon.

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Cambridge House Abijah Rowe IPA from The Cambridge House Brewpub
3.96 out of 5 based on 55 ratings.
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