Circus Penguin
Two Brothers Brewing Company

Circus PenguinCircus Penguin
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American Pale Ale (APA)
3.52 | pDev: 14.2%
Two Brothers Brewing Company
Illinois, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Circus PenguinCircus Penguin
Notes: Our first annual Brewers Choice artisan release beer, an organic beet and blood orange pale ale.
Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 69 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by beersis81:
Photo of beersis81
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%

More User Reviews:
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.23/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I keep trying all of the Two Brothers beers I can get, because for the most part I've loved them all. I didn't even read the description of this beer, pale ale with organic beets and blood oranges. The last beet beer I had was Magic Hat Wacko, and it wasn't so good. Pours into a chalice with a glowing orange copper just slightly hazy with a rotund off white head forming thick. Fine even lacing spread evenly between sips, looks pretty nice in my glass. Aroma has an earthy vegetable herbal quality with blood orange citrus, and an even keeled biscuit malt profile. Through each sip, I'm getting an earthy quality from the beet juice, and some orange pith/peel bitterness. Also a chalky slightly spicy yeast component, with little to no hops making a mark on the palate, finishes with an earth herbal dry bitterness as the pale malt biscuit breadiness subsides. Mouthfeel is lighter bodied with ample sturdy carbonation flowing just fine, works well in this beer. Something unusual added by the beet additions but it's hard to describe, overall a unique offering but nothing I would pickup again especially with the other outstanding Two Brothers beers out there.

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Photo of emerge077
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass, it has a bright sun-kissed orange yellow tone, and a compact layer of white foam on the surface that lingers for a few minutes, depositing drippy seafoam lace on the sides of the glass.

Aroma is earthy with hops and beets (possibly) which give it a certain freshness, but it's sort of indistinct.

Flavor is lightly bitter with orange peel, pale malts, and a medium level of earthy bitterness. Fairly smooth and light bodied, easily drinkable, though not as exotic as the label might have you think.

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Photo of DrFunkenstein
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of bluejacket74
2.41/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22 ounce bottle. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a hazy golden orange color with about an inch white head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty decent. The aroma is mostly earthy and vegetal, I assume that's from the beets. I smell beets/vegetables, and some grainy malt. I don't pick up any citrusy notes in the aroma at all. Unfortunately the taste isn't any better, and it got worse the longer I drank it. The brew tastes mostly like the aroma, beets/vegetables and grainy malt. No citrus. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit creamy and has a good amount of carbonation. I've been eating a lot of blood oranges lately and I picked this brew up thinking it would be good. Maybe I got a bad bottle, but I just didn't care for this at all. It wasn't horrible, but it sure wasn't good either. Maybe I'll try this again in the future if they ever decide to make this again, but I'm not going to drink this again anytime soon. $6.99 a bottle.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.36/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle from Binny's in Champaign, IL
No bottled on date
Poured into a standard US pint glass

Two Brothers' Circus Penguin is an interesting blend of ingredients into a pale ale, but the result does not come through in the actual beer. The beets are totally absent (and when were they added, because any beets I've cooked would have died this a hearty magenta?) and the blood orange seems to be reduced to a bit of rind-like essence and bitterness in the flavor. While this isn't amazing, it's still a satisfyingly enjoyable beer, though I think I'd take their normal offerings over it..

Pours a 2cm whitish head that has fairly decent retention, eventually diminishing to a ring around the glass with some islands of foam, leaving good lacing along the sides of the glass. Body is a transparent golden orange color, with light bringing out paler yellow-gold accents. Carbonation is visible and quite streaming.

Aroma is of light and slight caramel-colored malts, with notable citrus from hop choices and, possibly, blood orange, though blood orange isn't particularly sharp and citrusy like grapefruit. Not particularly strong or effusive, but enjoyable enough.

Taste is well-balanced between light and caramel-colored malts, bittering and citrus hops, and a bit of orange rind that shows up mid-palate and continues through, lasting into the aftertaste. Not pulling in any of those beets, though. Taste is akin to an amped-up English Pale Ale, with more bitterness than across the pond.

Beer is medium to medium-light bodied, with medium amounts of carbonation. The result is a beer that is crisp and taught across the palate, easily drinkable and enjoyable. Closes out expectedly dry, with no residual stickiness in the mouth.

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Photo of Latarnik
3/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of rmcnealy
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a medium amber gold that wasn't very translucent and appeared to not be totally filtered. Produced a dense bone white head that fleeted to a solid ring around the glass and a foggy layer atop the brew. The initial smells are of very slight hop and a Belgian-esque yeast smell that may be from the beets. Not much on the malt side. The hop tastes (which aren't prevalent) are in the middle of the scale; smack between the citrus and piney tastes. Definite tastes of beets. The blood oranges aren't very noticeable to my palet right now. The taste has a slight bitterness to it. It is very crisp and refreshing. The 5.9% abv is about right. Another nice offering from Two Brothers.


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Photo of metter98
3.46/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is slightly hazy yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high white head that died down a bit and left lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of orange citrus in the nose, but these seem to be more from the blood oranges rather than the hops.
T: The taste has flavors of pale malts along with notes of orange citrus and hints of beets. A light amount of bitterness is present in the finish.
M: It feels a bit shy of medium-bodied, smooth and a bit crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer isn’t that difficult to drink because the beet flavors are subdued.

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Photo of thewimperoo
3/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of t0rin0
3/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of Jenray
3/5  rDev -14.8%

Photo of sbricker
4/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of jsh420
4/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of VaTechHopHead
3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Slightly hazy golden orange with lots of small carbonation bubbles. Not a lot of head but provides decent lacing.

S - The blood oranges give a nice juicy sweet citrus flavor to the aroma and the secondary scent is the crisp Earthy hops. There is a slight hint of the beets way in the back lending a savory aroma to the nose.

T - First taste is mostly toned-down blood oranges mixed with the beets, sort of an astringent flavor. The hops don't shine through a whole lot but are Earthy and slightly floral, a nice combo with the beets. Aftertaste is slightly citric and savory.

M/O - Medium body with ok carbonation. Vanishes from the palate sort of quickly but filling with each sip. The flavor combination probably isn't for everybody but it is bold, different and well done.

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Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of homebrew311
3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up this whimsical looking beer the other day. Served in a snifter.

A: pours bright orange, dense white head, some lacing, small bit of cloudiness

S: nose starts with aroma of candied oranges, and hints of beet sweetness, the sweet candy like aroma is followed by a significant dough like bready character, not getting much in the way of hops on the nose

T: taste is well balanced, a bit of citrus up front, some of the candy from the nose, but not too sweet by any means, the bread/malt character comes through big and provides for a crisp and dry finish. Nice balance.

MF: light body, medium carbonation

O: this is interesting and unique. The blood orange and beet character certainly doesn't stand out, but it seems to integrate well with this beer. Worth a try.

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Photo of barnzy78
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of ryanpj
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of TheSSG
3.25/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of Vonerichs
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper body with a large, foamy, white head.

The smell is grainy with earthy and herbal hops. I don't pick up any of the advertised blood orange.

It's a rather average taste. The beets give it an earthy taste (or so the label tells me) and an herbal characteristic. I was hoping for more citrus from the orange, but I can't even tell it's there. Again, it has a grainy aspect to it.

Mouthfeel is crisp, good carbonation.

Overall, this is just above average for a pale and not very hoppy, even for the style.

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Photo of antoines15
3.25/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of Florida9
3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Very clear, brilliant golden yellow in color. Forms a thick bright white head. Good retention and a some moderate lacing.

S: Bready, with a vegetal quality, which I will assume is from the beets. Some citrus hops and a bit of alcohol on the finish.

T: Very smooth and creamy with the subdued flavor of roasted beets. Mild sweetness. A bit bready. Light citrus hops on the finish.

M: On the lighter side of medium with a rather smooth feel in the mouth. Appropriate carbonation. Mild bitterness.

O: An easily drinkable pale ale. The beets and oranges aren't at all overpowering (actually I couldn't even tell the oranges were in it) and the flavors seem to work well together. If anything, this one needs a bit more hops to make it shine. Overall, a pretty good beer though.

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Photo of kawilliams81
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Stone pint.

A- pilsner color with a 2 finger white head. Lacing blotches stick randomly on the glass.

S- has a almost macro lager smell, maybe the beets are causing this vegetable-like smell? Some citrus as well.

T- pale malts with slight citrus/orange flavors. Crisp pine hop bitterness at finish.

M- light body with medium carbonation. Slightly dry finish yet easy drinking pale.

O- an average pale as a lot of Two Bros beers are. Blood oranges and beets just doesn't come through enough.

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Photo of ChadQuest
3.12/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Visual is clear with some small particles floating about. It is not hazy like yeast, so i bet it is from the beets and blood oranges?
lacing and head to give it proper headwear.
The aroma is pale malt biscuit, with a citrus that could either be well done hops or the blood oranges, but ill assume its both. not strong, but pleasent.
Flavors are less crisp then i expected, i cant say i notice the beets, and once again i assume the citrus is a hop/blood orange combo, but the malt backbone is supportive. I think if they added a light spice in here that would have been the missing element, but props for experiments, Two brothers needs more of it.

A solid beer, average, half better, half worse.

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Circus Penguin from Two Brothers Brewing Company
Beer rating: 81 out of 100 with 69 ratings