Starfish Imperial Red Ale | Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub

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Starfish Imperial Red AleStarfish Imperial Red Ale
48 Ratings
Starfish Imperial Red AleStarfish Imperial Red Ale

Brewed by:
Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
Washington, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by biboergosum on 07-08-2011

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 48 |  Reviews: 24
Photo of adkieffer
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of bluckbeyes
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of oberon
3.83/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial nonic a deep amber/bronze with a frothy 1/2 finger off white head that left one big shade of lace as it never completely settles.Orange and pin hop notes stick out in the nose along with some brown sugar and caramel biscuit,a little bit of leather in the backgrown d as well.Flavors are a mix of the orangey hops and deep brown sugar and alcohol,the alcohol plays a pretty big role on the palate.It's close to being great with its nice hop profile but it is a tad raw.I liked it better than most I think.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of BilbosNuts
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a goblet.

A: Pours a clear, deep amber red color. A small white head on top quickly reduces to a thin ring. A moderate amount of carbonation slowly rises to the top.

S: There is a good balance of hops and malts. Sweet caramel and toasted malts pairs well with the fruity hop profile.

T: The malts have a bigger presence in the taste than the aroma lead me to believe. They drown out the fruity hops that I was looking forward to.

M: Its body is on the thinner side and is kind of watery. It has a moderate amount of carbonation that fits in just fine, allowing the flavors to linger. Finishes with a light crisp and bitter bite. Quite refreshing.

O: This was a pretty good Imperial Red. If the taste were able to create the balance found in the aroma, I would have enjoyed it a bit more though.

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Photo of rogerthegill
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of Pugs78
3.75/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of mactrail
2.68/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Thin and bitter Red Ale. Color is a nice red amber with a brief head. Quite woody in the mouth. Hops are the earthy and sawdust flavor. Some flowery fragrance and a flirtation with the honeysuckle. A hint of cedar in the taste, but makes me think of a dirty floor. Bitter aftertaste, but not IPA bitter. Light body and a watery mouthfeel. On the acidic side. Malt seems to be vanishingly thin.

Mostly the flavors are funky malt and bitter, dirty hops. There seems to be this family resemblance among the Fish Brewing beers in my experience. 22 oz bottle from the Jug Shop in San Francisco.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an American red-ale colour, but nice and vibrant. Head is off-white, large bubbles but irregular. Lace is sticky and bubbly and there's a thin layer of head remaining. Looks nice.

Smells quite nutty and malty. Plenty of toffeed peanut, salted caramel and a nice floral hop note behind. Not dominant, just nice tangy and subtle hints of lavender, grapefruit and orange peel. A nice, appealing balanced malt-grenade (not quite malt-bomb).

Taste is a goody. Quite tangy on the assault with plenty of light lemony hops, hint of mint and sage with a touch of a buttery note as well. Gets sweeter and slightly boozey midway where big malt notes lie. Nutty edge, with lots of English toffee and burnt sugar, with just a dollop of a sharp hop resin late making it veer off into slight astringency. Apart from that one duff note it's an incredible smooth, well-constructed palate.

Quite thin on the feel, almost watery and feels pretty empty. Disappointing for the size and for the palate.

Nice tasty beer though. Maybe needs a few kinks ironed out of it but it's an enjoyable drinking experience.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.82/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - slightly hazy deep brown, thin finger of tan head dissipated slowly
S - caramel and toasty aromas, along with a pine wood and earthiness
T - toffee and piney hops up front, some nutty and toasty maltiness with a woody dank finish
M - lower carbonation and even a little flat, decent hop bitter
O - a decent amber with a solid hop kick, alcohol not noticeable, well worth a try

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Photo of Bookseeb
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is a brownish red with an off white head that calmly settles leaving dabbled lace. Smell of sweet grainy caramel malt and citric hops. Taste has a punch of grapefruit hops over the sweetness of the grainy malt. mouthfeel is medium with low, but a good balance of carbonation. Definately an Imperial, strong, bold with a little character.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.77/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 21/11/11

A hazy brownish amber with a finger of tan head that falls quickly but leaves lots of polka dot lace

S loads of caramel with a little citric hops and booze

T not far from the smell but a little toned down, a little spicy and herbal hops but faded

M fairly thick and sticky with just enough carbonation to give it a creamy feel, just a little heat and fairly sweet

O not a bad beer but I was expecting more of a hop bomb, reminds me of a Barley Wine a little bit with the malt coming out

I'd like to know the age of this one because only 2011 is notched no month, decent beer but over 10$ a 650ml I doubt I'll drink it again

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Photo of MsRif
3.53/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on-tap at Capone's in Norristown, PA. Poured a beautiful ruby red color. Clear. Small white head that quickly receded, leaving minimal lacing. Had an aroma of earthy hops (bitter!), citrus, sweet malts, caramel and light spices. Taste followed the nose and there was certainly a noticeable alcohol taste. Not a bad thing, but definitely pronounced.

Medium-bodied with moderate carbonation. Pretty smooth and drinkable considering the ABV. Overall, a decent brew that I would recommend having as a sampler...if you like it, get a full glass!

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Photo of Rifugium
3.88/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Capone's, Norristown, PA

"Imperial red ales" always snag me when I see them, because I think I've yet to have one I didn't enjoy. This beer was served in a Weyerbacher tulip glass, a brilliant ruby red color, clear and moderately carbonated, with a small but sturdy cap of off-white head. Aroma of sweet malts, caramel, fresh hops, citrus, light fruit and herbs. A hearty blast of flavor right off the bat, with a good balance of sweet malts and citrusy hops, noticeable booziness, crisp and clean, herbal and grassy notes more apparently once the palate has had time to adjust. Medium body, very enjoyable, and very sessionable even for a higher-alcohol drink.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.98/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased from Healthy Spirits in San Francisco, brought back to Sydney and opened with @tobeerornottobe and @LaitueGonflable.

Lovely hue, a truly good bright ruby red, with a collapsing, but pleasantly silky head of yellow white. Body is lovely and fine, leaving tight carbonation when swirled. Some patchy lace. It's a really lovely looking American Red Ale, absolutely what you want from the style.

Nose is also good, with a lovely fresh hop aroma giving some sharp citric fruit characters, but leavened with hints of rosewater and potpourri. Under this is the hint of roast, a touch of malt, suggesting that this is deeper and not as one-sided as an IPA with similar hop characters. Really nice.

Taste is a little bit of a let-down, but still solid for the style. Clean malt draws the palate forward, with just a hint of greenness from the hops around the edges of the palate. Slight tingle of bitterness on the back, but it doesn't do enough to really clear out the maltiness. It's still very pleasant, but it doesn't quite hit the mild graininess or the robust hoppiness quite right.

Feel is smooth but light. Quite pleasant.

It's a pretty decent American Red Ale, but this is a style I particularly love, and I love it more when breweries do it in a way which fits with my rather narrow expectations for the style. Yeah, that probably makes me a bad person.

 1,369 characters

Photo of snaotheus
3.64/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle poured into a really large mug

Pours reddish brown, slightly cloudy from some sediment at the bottom that I let into my pour, almost no head, very little in the way of actual carbonation. Smell is caramelly-sweet, a little bit of a spicy hops smell.

Taste is pretty good, a nice mixture of caramel sweetness and hoppy goodness. Could use a bit more bitterness, but it's pretty solid.

Mouthfeel is unfortunately flat, although it has the right thickness. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that was let down by lack of carbonation.

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Photo of harrymel
2.98/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

bottled: June, 2011

A: pours a ruddy red ale with no real head production and a mirror surface. Hazy clarity. no lace.

S: Nice caramel and toffee tones with a bit of oxidation, nicely balanced with some earthy hops. Above average nose for an Impy Red. Malt dominent, reminds me of a hopped English BW

T: Bitter and sweet. Some notes of sweet barley and some healthy bittering hops give this a nice balance, but the taste is nothing special. Average.

M: Thin with low carb. I would like a little more body with a little more carb to balance it out. Slick finish.

O: Beyond the nose, this beer doesn't have much to offer me.

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Photo of Ghenna
3.55/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber, very nice dark amber color.\

Spicy reddish smell to it (well malt/hop balanced).

Lots of up front hops, resin and pine.

MF isn't too strong or anything.

Strong beer, but fits a hop profile I'm not super fond of (pine resin-y). Not bad, but not one I would buy again. If you like that sort of hop profile I'm sure it would be great, but I'm more of a citrus hop person,

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Photo of julian
3.28/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark amber colored with a minimal off white head that quickly diminishes into small thin islands of foam on the surface. Nice lacing throughout. 3.5

S: Earthy hops, alcohol and sweet maltiness, with mild roast on the finish, but intensity in every department is lacking. 3

T&M: Taste is pretty malt forward. Lots of toffee/toasted biscuit malt sweetness, but there’s somewhat of a earthy, resinous hop presence in the background. Carbonation is appropriate and has a smooth creamy silky mouth feel. Finishes clean with no adverse aftertaste. 3.5 / 3.5

O: Not what I was expecting for an Imperial Red, but I guess it’s still in line with the style. I think Nugget Nectar ruined me. This is a lot more malt forward, although still within style, so I can’t fault it. It’s just not my preference. It’s not bad, don’t get me wrong. It’s definitely worth trying, but I just can’t drink too much of it due to the sweetness. 3

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.68/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 650 ml brown bottle. Pours out a deep translucent amber hue, quick falling creamy off-white head.

Sweet malt and citrusy American hops on the nose, some spicy warm alcohol in the background.

Sweet, thick, sugary malt is immediately sliced through with spicy warmth and grapefruit pith from the hops, turning more into a grapefruit rind character towards the finish. Malt and hops are both somewhat intense, but balanced quite well.

Moutheel is full-bodied, slick and solky smooth texture, with low carbonation. Worth checking out and picking up again.

Enjoyable Red Ale, be it Imperial or not, with decent balance.

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Photo of beertunes
3.23/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in bubble pint glass. Poured a clean, clear reddish amber with 3/4 inch of of off-white head that had low retention and good lacing.

The aroma was good, hops being a bit more of a presence than than the earthy grains. The flavors were bolder and more well defined than the scent had lead me to expect. The malt was stronger and the hops crisper than in the nose.

The body was thinner than I would have expected for an "Imperial" version. Drinkability was decent, I'd have it again, but I probably wouldn't have 2 in a row. Overall, a solid beer that was enjoyable enough, but I wouldn't go out of my way to get it. But it's worth trying if you see it.

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Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz glass, on-tap at the bucolic Olympia brewpub.

This beer appears a clear, dark burnt reddish amber hue, with a thin cap of bubbly, mildly foamy, and mostly soapy beige head, which leaves a thorough wall of Swiss cheese lace around the glass as things sink away. Not too shabby lookin'!

It smells of bready, and somewhat toasty caramel malt, juicy grapefruit/orange citrus, a certain dank pine acridity, and further leafy, earthy, and kind of perfumed hops. The taste is more bitter and musty pine resin, pithy red Texas grapefruit, navel orange, and a bit of aged lemon citrus, caramel/toffee malt - one riddled with a dark breadiness - additional muddled orchard fruit, and a sort of meaty, leafy, and still alcohol-informed hoppiness.

The carbonation is moderate, just a lilting frothiness throughout, the body a heady medium weight, and perhaps a tad sticky, but fairly smooth overall. It finishes well off-dry, the hops and malt continuing to wrestle, sumo-style - guess which one steps off the mat first?

Proving indeed to be a Fish product, the hops win out, but it's hardly a grand slam. At any rate, a pleasantly hopped to the nuts amber ale, and even nicer to try it at the source, before wandering around downtown, and the state capitol grounds.

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Starfish Imperial Red Ale from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
Beer rating: 3.55 out of 5 with 48 ratings