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Heavy Handed IPA | Two Brothers Brewing Company

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Heavy Handed IPAHeavy Handed IPA
Very Good
876 Ratings
Heavy Handed IPAHeavy Handed IPA

Brewed by:
Two Brothers Brewing Company
Illinois, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Heavy Handed IPA is brewed to celebrate the harvesting of the hops every year. Within moments of harvest we add freshly picked "Wet Hops" to this IPA. Since the hops have not been dried before use, they add a wonderful character found in no other beer. A hop lovers dream. (Available September through December) Each batch is "single hopped" with a different hop variety.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-03-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 876 |  Reviews: 402
Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.99/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sierra Nevada imperial pint. 17.1 degrees Plato, 65 IBUs, 6.7% ABV, Lot 2798.

A - The moderate pour didn't do much to the appearance of the beer. The color is a hazy amber orange color with a low off-white dense head. Low retention but decent lace left over.

S - The aroma is so rich! It's bursting with melted caramel sweetness and vanilla cake batter as well as a massive mildly fruity, floral nose. This is one hell of a unique aroma. Balanced to the sweeter side but awesome regardless. Could be a bit older too.

T - Bold bready caramel malts mash up well with the heavy handed level of resiny hops in this beer. Lots of little nuances poke around like mango and grapefruit as well as herbs and pine. Good balance between malts and hops.

M - Good balance here. While the hops are added heavy handedly, so are the malts. Sweet but dry and bitter too. Medium-full bodied and robust!

D - It wasn't too bad at first but the bitterness is starting to creep up on me. I'm glad I finally tried this beer. It's always sold out when I look in Illinois. I'd still prefer the oak fodure aged version though.

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Photo of cheezdawg
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The west coast and the east coast both have their typical IPAs, this is the first IPA that has it's own flavor and leg to stand on here in the Midwest. I really enjoy this brew. It has some hops, but it's not a hop bomb, it's an easily sessionable beer. This isn't a beer that I would say EVERYONE needs to try but if you are looking for an inexpensive six pack, this is a great one. I'm not a big hop fan, so that's probably why I find this so enjoyable. It's also not overly malty. Good job 2bros!

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Photo of scottbrew4u
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This beer pours a clear amber color with a thick two-finger head. Great lacing as you drink.

S: Rich, sweet roasted malt and caramel aroma quickly matched by citrusy american hops. Some honey and clove and peppery spice notes too. Yeast ads a bit of fruity esters.

T: Roasted malt is up front with a smooth sweetness and fresh bread and buttery toffee characters. Hops balance the malt nicely and are not overly bitter but slightly peppery and definitely a full, fresh citrus flavor. Some piney flavors in here too. Finish is to the bitter side.

M: Creamy medium body with some crisp, smooth carbonation and just a hint of alcohol on the breath.

D: I really like this IPA. It is easy to drink and superbly well balanced. Not a major hop bomb but hop heads will love it!

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Photo of taddyone
4.02/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this beer on tap and enjoyed it. I realy enjoy it when brewers do the unexpected and make a beer that combines two styles. This beer labeled as an IPA crosses over the typical style range of into the brown ale realm with its sweet malty flavors and brown color. As a hophead I was interested in tasting this one because the use wet hops rather than the traditional dry hops. There was a pleasant hop flavor slightly different than IPAs.

When it came down to drinkability, I do not see drinking more than one in a sitting. The beer had a very good flavor overall however the combination of the sweet maltiness and hops and a thicker mouthfeel filled me up on the first glass.

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Photo of prg1976
3.46/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy, dark amber color.

Smells piney, but not overpowering.

Taste is hoppy, with a malty background. Not too sweet, not too bitter. Can really taste caramel and piney hops.

Mouthfeel is fine, doesn't overpower. Drinkability is average.

Not bad, not great, pretty much right down the middle.

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Photo of champ103
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear copper/reddish color. A two finger head forms, and quickly recedes. Rings of sticky lace is left behind.
S: Wonderfully balanced. Citrus, floral, and piny hops up front. Sweet caramel and bready malt for balance.
T: Follows the nose. A good balance between the malt and hops. It is hop forward with citrus and pine. Caramel and bread/biscuit follows. Though this has an acidic and mineral flavor that is a little off putting.
M/D: A medium body that is crisp and dry. Easy to drink. I can quaff a few with no problem.

This is a good IPA. Well balanced and easy to drink. Something I would recommend.

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Photo of corby112
3.74/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle picked up today at The foodery.

Pours a very dark amber/chestnut brown color with dark golden burnt orange hues when held to a light source and a one fimger foamy white head that quickly dissipates into a lasting ring that leaves sporadic spots of lacing behind.

Fresh juicy oily hop aroma with lots of earthy dank floral, dry piny and sweet citrus character. Hints of grapefruit mango, chronic, pineapple, pine needle and orange peel are countered by a sweet caramel malt character that has a bit of a graham crackery scent. The aroma is my favorite characteristic of this beer.

Unfortunately the mouthfeel and flavor don't live up to the aroma. Fuller end of medium body with plenty of dry earthy hops with sweet citrus notes but the malt backboe is a bit too strong for my liking and there is a sweet alcohol presence mid palate that is a bit harsh. Pretty hop forward with dry pine nd sweet citrus notes, mostly lemon peel and grapefruit, followed by a sweet caramel/graham vracker malt backbone and a sweet alcohol presence mid-palate that lingers into a dry piny hop finish. Well balanced but probably too much so. Decent but not that exciting.

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Photo of jbphoto88
3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color of tarnished copper, orange with suggestions of red. The head is an off white mix of skinny and fat bubbles. Very sticky and webs the glass as you drink.

The nose makes me want to drink this beer. There is a sweet mix of caramelized grains with a heavy handful of citrus and floral hops. Quite nice except for a touch of noticeable mustiness.

I taste warm caramelized grains mixed with a spiced bready yeast. Not quite in the neighborhood of a Belgian but yeasty goodness none the less. Along with the grain backbone is a solid hop profile. Citrus is there but I taste mostly floral flavors. In fact there is almost a little rose petal perfume flavor mixed in.

Simple mouthfeel with a light carbonation for such a medium bodied beer. To me this tastes like a cask conditioned English beer with a few more hops. Earthy and smooth and easy to drink especially with the 5.7% ABV.

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Photo of BigMike
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden tangerine orange color with an almost pure white head. About a finger and a half worth. Nice lacing.

Smells strongly of tropical fruit and oranges. A touch of pineapple and mango.

Flavor is definitely hop dominated. Lots of tropical sweetness and orange. Finishes with a nice crisp white grapefruit bitterness.

Nice crisp clean mouthfeel. Easily drinkable. BA lists it at 5.7%abv. but the bottle says 6.7%abv. Either way the alcohol plays no part in flavor or drinkability.

I could drink a few of these for sure. I wouldn't call this one anything more then a middle of the road to maybe slightly better then average IPA. It's tasty and drinkable but its missing just a little something more.

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Photo of robbyc1
4.23/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lot 2549 poured into a Sam Adams glass. Nice clear light orange look, great white head 3 fingers plus excellent lace all the way down.

Piny, and malty at the same note, with wonderful zest of orange and lemons, tell me this has no fruit added.

Great robust flavor of fresh hops and solid bready malt, and great balance and combination, finish is long and satisfying. Fruity with orange and very dry from the hops here, I must say this is on par with Two Hearted. An American IPA to stay with, unfortunately it's a seasonal only.

Medium good mouthfeel, good carbonation. Basically a session beer but a bit bitter to have more than a few. Well done.

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Photo of bruachan
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

on tap at the source

great lacing here to go with an attractive copper color

fresh fresh hops come from the good head and some sweet malts shine as well

delicious frickin fresh wet hop flavor, with plenty of caramel for a good backbone (solid mouthfeel, too). the hops are more funky than distinctly piney or citrus-oriented. strong but clean bitterness, though; not rough at all. great drinking, hoppy delicious monster

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Photo of PDXHops
2.99/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, courtesy of Ryan011235.

Pours a hazy and very dark amber, capped with 2 fingers of cream-colored head. Good retention and decent lacing.

Smells primarily of sweet malts and a modest level of pine. Taste pretty much follows the nose, with a bit of added earthiness. No lingering bitterness, but the sweetness isn't overpowering, either. Finishes bready and moderately sweet. In general, it's an enjoyable IPA, but rather tame (old bottle?).

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Photo of jsh420
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

batch 2949 or 2549 cant read it that well

pours dark copper orange with a big 2 finger head that left rings all down the glass

smells citrus tiny pinch of pine and a carmel malts

taste is a nice balance of citrus and pine hops alongside the malt backbone - very balanced

mouthfeel is a medium beer very creamy and smooth

drinkability - a west coast style ipa right here in the midwest - i wish i knew more about the batch #'s

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Photo of NeutroMan
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Knowing from experience the need to hard-pour Two Brothers brews to get any kind of head, I did just that and got a one-finger dense off-white head that gradually faded to a thin film and left respectable lacing. Clear reddish-copper color.

Smell: Prominent hop aroma with the citrusy, floral character one would expect with American hops. A clean sweet malt backbone is detected.

Taste: High American hop flavor - citrusy, floral, and piney with some mild fruitiness. The high hop bitterness is deflected somewhat by the clean malt backbone, although it's still quite bitter and lingers into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel & Drinkability: Smooth medium body. No carbonation and no real discernible alcohol warmth make this an easy-drinking IPA.

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Photo of sgoodship
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Every since trying Cane & Ebel on tap at Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro, I've been rocking the Cane & Ebel in the bottle too. I enjoyed that so much, I wanted to try more two brothers.

The appearance was slightly redish with a bit of a haze - made me feel it was a relative of C&E. A cream colored, soft head contained bigger bubbles and left incredible lacing like age lines on a tree.

The nose came across as floral to me. There was definite pine and citrus fruit there too. You can detect a good malt back bone. It's hop forward but not screaming - I'd have enjoyed a little more aggressiveness.

The taste was very much like the smell - no surprises. The progression is nice. There is a big backbone - plenty of bread and caramel. You get the malt and think it is going to be subtle but through the fruit, floral, the piney hop kicks in during the finish and delivers a good bite in the back of the palate. It's that good, biting resiny dryness - I'm really addicted to that.

Can I say it is Cane and Ebel lite? Nah - it's not the same beast at all but definitely feels related. It's an exceptionally enjoyable IPA and maybe just a touch underrated. With some adjustments to the hop profile, this could be a killer brew. It just left me a bit lacking.

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Photo of biggred1
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Orange amber with a massive pillowy eggshell head that melts to stiff peaks and leaves plenty of sticky lace in big rings down the glass. This beer smells good and fresh with tropical fruity hops and rich malts. The flavor is nice and complex with biscuit and pale malts evenly balanced with fresh dank hops, more malty flavors than most "harvest" ales I've had this year, a nice change of pace. Medium bodied with smooth carbonation. I suspected this beer had to be more than 5.7% ABV, the bottle I have lists it at 6.7%.

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Photo of kegger22
3.86/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a clear, dark orange with a modest head that quickly dissipated to a collar. The aroma was the faintest citrus. The taste was toffee and grapefruit battling it out and the bitter aftertaste declaring the winner. The feel was medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability was quite good. Well balanced, solid effort from the other Two Brothers. I would pay for this one again.

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Photo of cadizkyguy
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm starting to enjoy Two Brothers' brews more and more and this one was very good across the board. Poured into a Sam Adams Sensory Glass and an aggressive pour gets some foam over the rim. Oh well, live and learn. Anyway, this beer has a very nice head that dissipates slowly. A dark brew, too. Very nice color and that's the just the start. To me, this beer smells and tastes like a Bell's Hopslam with a little age on it. Taste is out of this world. Mouthful, too, is very good. At 5.7 ABV, about half the alcohol of a Hopslam, this could possibly be my new year-round favorite for IPA/DIPAs.

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Photo of samie85
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A-Coppery red with an off white one finger head. Decent lacing.

S- Caramel malt and zesty grapefruit/citrus with a bit of pine.

T-Caramel upfront finishing with a citrusy, pine bitterness.

M- Pretty creamy and smooth for an IPA. I like it.

D- Pretty easy to drink. This beer is pretty well balanced and I think that is a significant factor as to how easy it drinks.

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Photo of trbergman
3.35/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a shaker pint.

A - Amber-orange with one finger of light beige head. Nice lacing.

S - Some caramel and toffee malt mostly overshadows the aromas of fresh hops - grass, leaves, orange zest, grapefruit.

T - Sweet malt background yields to grassy, citrusy hop flavor and moderate (for an IPA) bitterness. A bit too bready for my taste.

M - Good carbonation, medium body - perhaps too chewy.

D - It seems underattenuated. Or there could be too much crystal malt. In any case, the hops aren't prominent enough to be a really great IPA in my book. The same level of bitterness would be fine if the beer were a little more dry.

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Photo of pmccallum86
3.76/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep golden red with a medium height thick bubbly head that dissipates slowly leaving beautiful lacing on the glass.

The smell is of caramel and wet floral hops, not a very powerful scent.

Taste is of rich malt followed by the wet hop taste common this variety. Bitter in the finish.

Thick and creamy mouthfeel, nothing amazing.

The drinkability is slightly above average, not a bad wet hop IPA.

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Photo of dukedevil0
3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got two bottles side by side - one is batch 2549 with williamette hops and the other is 2719 with cascade.

A: Both pour a reddish hue of amber and a couple fingers of off-white colored head that laces really well as it settles.

S: Both have very citrusy, grapefruity scents, but the williamette smells a little more caramel malt-ish and piney, which the cascade has a more candi sugar, sweet scent with little pine.

T: The flavors are less discernable to me between the batches. Both have pretty forward malt profiles that taste similar. Williamette tastes like muted hop flavors, with just a little citrus and grapefruit - Cascade is very similar with just a touch more sweetness.

M: The brews have the same mouthfeel, which is full bodied, and well carbonated, but nothing outstanding here.

D: The flavor is decent, but nothing awesome so i'm not itching to keep taking lots of sips. However, it's a really easy beer to put down the hatch. No alcohol flavor at all.

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Photo of mikey711
3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Orange/golden amber with a nice half inch white head.

S: Decent pine note with a undertone of sweetness.

T: Busicuity sweet with a hint of pne hops.

M: Rich and creamy, but slightly watery.

D: I think I could drink this beer extensively through out the day with no problem

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Photo of mckajd03
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this last season, and it was good then too. The malt background is sweet, which pairs nicely with the abundance of hops- it allows the flavor and aroma to come out more than with a heavier IPA. It has such a smooth mouthfeel- one of the better characteristics. The hop profile is nothing special (though it's still very good), but it is so well balanced that the freshness of the hops is accentuated over the bitterness. Quite good.

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Photo of gatornation
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

lot 2619 on the 2009 bottle tells me its willamette hops per the brewery home page 1 of 5 used for this years wet hopped ipa..the appearance is a beautiful IPA color ... deep copper orange with some nice sticky lacing the smell is hops grapefruit pine and malt..the taste is the same its very well balanced very smooth just what i like/expect from an IPA.. this one is one of several wet hopped varieties out now ..what makes this one good is its balance between the hops added and the malt its delicious a must try

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Heavy Handed IPA from Two Brothers Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.82 out of 5 with 876 ratings
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