Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Scratch Beer 43 - 2011 | Tröegs Brewing Company

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Scratch Beer 43 - 2011Scratch Beer 43 - 2011
Very Good
44 Ratings
Scratch Beer 43 - 2011Scratch Beer 43 - 2011

Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
We are still playing with IPAs because hops make us very happy. An American-style IPA, coming in at 85 IBUs and generously hopped with Bravo, Chinook, and Cascade varieties.

Added by orangesol on 03-24-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50  | next → last
Ratings: 44 |  Reviews: 38
Photo of number1bum
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks as always go out to Deuane for picking this up for me and my friends.

Pours a pretty clear golden amber color with just a touch of haze. Two inches of creamy off-white head are fluffy and keep quite well, coating the sides of the glass nicely too.

Smell is bright and floral, with a lemon aroma particularly apparent. It has a zesty sort of citrusy quality, with some grapefruit too as well as some grass.

Taste is also very pleasantly citrusy with a nice amount of hop flavor. It's lemony and grapefruity, a zesty and crisp citrus flavor, not overly pithy or bitter, but not juicy sweet either. There is some grassy flavor here too. There is a light malt sweetness, not caramel-like but more like a light pale sweetness with a touch of biscuit as well. Hop bitterness is moderate and it's well balanced for an IPA.

Mouthfeel is a light-medium body, crisp and smooth. It's pretty clean in the finish for an IPA; not a lot of lasting bitterness. Not overly creamy or oily but quite smooth.

Most of the IPAs that Troegs has attempted in the Scratch series to date have been either disappointing or downright bad, so I have to hand it to them this time. This is really a nice beer. Not a super hoppy assault on the tastebuds, but a nicely balanced, crisp and fresh tasting IPA. Not something that a West Coast IPA devotee is likely to go nuts over, but I find it quite refreshing and very drinkable, as well. 38 is still my favorite among the IPAs they have done, but this is a close 2nd. Well done Troegs.

 1,517 characters

Photo of thain709
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Served with a clear, golden body...you can see the slow carbonation working towards the top...the head was creamy and white and showed some decent retention...a full cap...it laced in an entire sheet

S - Bright citrus hops jump out with notes of grapefruit, orange, and some lemon...the malts are sweet but limited to the background

T - This is weird...the citrus hops have changed to earthy-tasting hops...there was just a quick blast of the citrus right up front...now the earthy hops are in and the malt is trying to make an appearance but no luck...the hops come back in full force and finish bitter with a greenness to them

M - Medium bodied...soft carbonation...this one is very bitter and green...I like bitter, but this is not mixing well on the palate

O - I'll say I still like 39 the best...this one was good...I was surprised to taste more earthiness than citrus after smelling the beer...the bitterness was at a good level (harsh and long) but mixed with the earthiness of the beer kind of turned me off

 1,023 characters

Photo of JWU
4.11/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from my 2L growler. was filled at the brewery today.

A: gorgeous. deep yellow, not quite amber. Pillowy bright white head. Clear, no real haze to speak of. great thin lacing down my mug. Seriously the prettiest IPA I've seen in awhile.

S: More on the citrusy side than piney. Grapefruit. A hint of the sweet malt backbone that I'm hoping comes through on the taste.

T: Wow, seriously complex and interesting. Initial almost spicey hop zing is quickly balanced by a BIG malt bill for an IPA. Thought that it needed more hop balance, but it has a really late drying/hop flavor/bitter effect. The hop flavor doesn't exactly follow the smell, it has much more of a piney flavor, rather than the citric smell.

M: Medium bodied and carbonated, with a really nice slick feel that Troegs seems to really nail in a lot of their beers.

D: Yeah, I can have a couple of mugs of this. There's enough malt not to tire my palette.

Very nice offering from Troegs.
I hope they decide to bring one of these scratch IPA's into regular production!

 1,041 characters

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy and golden, not that much head but thin sheets of nice lacing are present.

Smell is a bit of a pine/grapefruit/pineapple bomb, but not too over the top.

Taste is smooth and hoppy, piney and citrusey, with a nice malt balance.

Feel is pretty rich and smooth, with a lingering lightly bitter aftertaste and a bit of alcohol warming feel.

Drinks well. A nice offering from Troegs!

 398 characters

Photo of psuKinger
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Scratch #43 had on draft at the brewery.

A: pours an incredibly light (almost *fizzy*) yellow hue with a moderate white head that dissipated quickly but clung to the glass nicely. 4.0

S: very citrus. Maybe some mango? And a touch of grapefruit. 4.0

T: for an IPA? Light, smooth, and easy-drinkin'. It won't blow your hair back, but I'd go so far as to say this would be the perfect summer ipa. Taste follows the nose, citrus flavors dominate, with some grapefruit and bitterness on the back end... 4.0.

M: light and sticky, with good carbonation. 4.0

D: very high. I could drink this all day. Awesome stuff. Very quaffable. 5.0

I hope Troegs considers putting this in the regular rotation, perhaps as a spring/summer release? Just awesome drinkability here, I prefer this over Sunshine Pils by a wide margin.

EDIT: I was able to find this brief write-up on the Troegs Website, which provides some "vital stats" about Scratch 43 that some might appreciate:
Scratch #43 is now available in the Brewery Tasting Room. We are still playing with IPAs because hops make us very happy. Here are the vital statistics for the beer:
OG: 16.3
ABV: 6.7%
Malt: Pils, Munich IBU: 85
Hops: Bravo, Chinook, Cascade
Yeast: House Ale
Dry-hopped: Cascade


 1,256 characters

Photo of CrookedStill
4.42/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Have to say thanks to Outchillen for this one.

Pours a hazy golden/straw with a thick white head that slowly falls. I have to agree with a previous review that it resembles a pilsner.

Smells amazing! Faint fruit/citrus notes first but a bright pine/grassy aroma dominates. Honestly, it smells like a beautiful summer day outdoors.

Hops hit the palate right away. Much like the aroma, there's a pine bitterness that's mildly dry. The bitter bite is really well balanced with a mellow sweetness that doesn't take anything away from the hops. Finishes slightly dry with a lingering lemon like bitterness.

For it to have such a light body it has a very creamy texture. Again reminds me a pilsner. Crisp with a medium carbonation really accentuates the grassy/pine hops. Very easy and enjoyable to drink.

I really enjoyed this beer. Wonderful balance between sweetness and bitterness. Crisp and surprisingly refreshing. It has one of the best aromas of any IPA I've ever tried with a taste that doesn't disappoint. Although there were certain aspects that reminded me of a heavily hopped pilsner, that's just a matter of semantics and takes nothing away from the overall enjoyability of the beer itself. I'm glad I had the chance to try it and if given the chance would enjoy many more.

 1,287 characters

Photo of bum732
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S: Resiny hops, grapefruit, some dank, daisy funkiness.

L: Hazy straw yellow, white head that dissipates, nice lacing.

T: Grapefruit with some pine sweet malt. Medium bitterness with a semi-dry finish. Some grapefruit rind and mango.

M: Medium bodied, medium low carbonation.

A nice IPA, fresh with great aromas and flavors. Has a "light" body which is perfect for the warmer weather.

 388 characters

Photo of Tucquan
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on 2011-04-08 in Columbia from a sealed growler poured 3 days ago.

A - Hazy, golden straw with a 1-finger head that lasts. Light lacing.

S - Bread, lemon, grass, hop floral.

T - Light biscuit with some raspberry sweetness, citrus, grass and lemon zest with plenty of hop bitterness. Dries very quickly leaving lingering grapefruit and lemon zest bitterness.

M - Light-medium body and carbonation. More crisp than creamy. Prickly and a bit resinous.

O - I like this brew. Kudos for the high IBUs in a 6.7% ABV brew. It definitely gets the hop blood flowing but I found the overall malt/fruit/grass taste no as exciting as a typical West Coast style IPA.

 668 characters

Photo of OWSLEY069
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clean yellow-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, a mix of mango and pine. In the taste, mango citrus hops and a nice malt, and ending with a dry pine hop. A small hop bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry pine hop in the aftertaste. Nice mix of hops, this could be a nice everyday IPA.

 317 characters

Photo of boralyl
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours an inch of creamy white head. The beer is surprisingly light in color, almost looks like a pilsner. It has a golden straw color with visible carbonation.

S - The aroma consists of bready malts, earthy and flowery hops, and hints of citrus.

M - Light in body with active carbonation.

T - I could really see someone confusing this beer with a pilsner. Up front are bready and doughy malts. Up next comes a pretty strong floral hop flavor with some earthiness. There is a little bit of lemon and the faintest hint of citrus before a bitter finish.

Not your typical American IPA, but I happened to enjoy it. I usually prefer a citrus/grapefruit bomb, but this was a nice change of pace.

 696 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap at the brewery tasting room -served in a pint.

The color is very clear golden apricot with thick rocky cap of about 1 1/2 inches with fine beading. The lace sticks very well and retention is very good. The smell is good with a nice citrus bouquet and subtle malt with a gentle musty yeast ester in the background. the feel is good - highly carbonated and moderately bitter w/ gentle astringency and slight yeast presence with light toasted tinge from the malt and very mild alcohol in the semi-dry finish.

I enjoy the way the taste has a nice bitter entry with some mild malt sweetness balancing with som yeast in there giving a slight smoothness to the flavor with some grassiness and light floral effects, the citrus elements seem to come through more in the nose than the flavor with gentle dry spiciness in the finish. This IPA is satisfying and is a good example of the style, but not as great as some Hoppy beauties I have had from Troegs. I will certainly go for this again as it is very good drinkability wise.

 1,042 characters

Photo of Outchillen
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a sample at the brewery, ended up buying a case

A:pale yellow orange, thick white head

S: A little citrus and floral, had a deeper grassy aroma, almost like a farm

T/M: medium body but well balanced, light caramel malts, grassy earthy hops, with citrus hints, nicely carbinated

Overall i thought it was a good IPA, its a little like 21st amendments ipa with the color and balance of it, good enough for a case of it

 423 characters

Photo of Kegatron
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ the Tröegs Brewing Company on 3/25/11. Served in a pint glass.

Pours a hazed gold, with a thin covering of bright-white foamy head. This maintains a rich creaminess to the look, soaping the sides of the glass with frothy swathes of lacing. The aroma smells slightly herbal and leafy, with a gentle peppery spiciness. Bitter fruit and sweet biscuits across the back give this a fresh green tanginess. This overall has a nice flavorful vibrancy to it in the nose.

The taste is grassy feeling and bitter with zesty grapefruit and a splash of tarter lemon. Pithy citrus peel and some resins add a light sharpness across the tongue. Bready malt sweetness mostly balances the profile out here but the bitterness reemerges in the finish with lingering notes of pine, spice, and rind. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a prickly creaminess that gives this a big crispness that is ultimately maybe coming off as a touch too lively. There is a touch of warmth here from that 7% ABV, which helps give that bitterness some extra pop.

I actually rather enjoyed this, as the emphasis on that grassy fresh bitterness here gave this a refreshing crispness that mostly stayed quite breezy on the palate. Almost like a fuller APA at times. But as the next possible staple IPA from Tröegs, this one just didn't get to the robust levels that you would expect.

 1,359 characters

Photo of John_M
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery yesterday.

Scratch 43 pours a solid gold color with amber hilights. Head retention is pretty decent, and there is considerable lacing. The nose is all dry citrus and pepper, leading one to expect a pretty dry IPA. On the palate this beer is quite dry, displaying considerable bitterness (pretty much as expected). Truth be told, this beer seemed more like an imperial pilsner then an IPA, with hints of honey and bread dough along with the dry citrus. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with long, quite bitter finish. Drinkability was good, though the combination of bitterness abd fairly high alcohol make it a bit of chore to just drink this right down.

Hmmm. While I thought this a pretty decent beer, based on looks, aroma and taste, this could easily pass for a well made, very hoppy, imperial pilsner. Of the recent scratch IPA's, I thought this one the easily the hoppiest and least malty. Still a pretty solid beer...

 944 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.68/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A growler filled yesterday. Opened last night but not finished.

A: The IPA is golden, on the paler end of the spectrum and translucent to boot. A white head, seemingly appropriate for the lighter hues, adds a finger of height, coating the mouth of my glass.

S: The nose, given ample time to warm up, is grassy with pine resins. The hop profile isn't particularly strong, but what's there resonates. Biscuits below the surface don't stack up.

T: The floral flavors are much more apparent at warmer temperatures. The flavors, grassy with pine and citrus, are much more vibrant, bitter with a sweet streak. From the comfort of my couch, the hoppiness is much better (brewery pours are too cold). Biscuit malts are a nice addition to the hops, supporting them. The overall package is quick to fade away, not much of a lingering presence. Larger sips reveal none of the hop nuance.

M: The mouthfeel starts off nicely, grassy with pine. After that start, the flavors are quick to disappear, leaving a sugary presence behind.

O: Better at home (temperature control is key). I'm still not sold on any of the five though.

 1,118 characters

Photo of stakem
3.66/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle care of wishuwerebeer, thanks Bryan.

Poured into a pint glass, this brew appears a very hazed golden yellow color with a finger of fluffy white head that is composed of rather large bubbles. This scratch IPA obviously does not follow the theme that the past 4 scratch ipas were on. Whereas the others appeared to have a polished clarity, this one is very hazed from a careful pour that even left a bunch of sediment still in the bottle. The particulate is rather large and gets stuck hanging in suspension while bubbles slowly rise to the surface in support of the creamy head. The head has some pretty good retention, as it recedes, it leaves a webbing of lace work on the glass.

The aroma of this brew is fruity and fresh with hops displaying a distinct scent of citrus meets more fruits which are quite pear-like in character. It is lightly grassy and herbal as well with each additional whiff. There is a light bready grain character to the back of the smell that brings this all together with a little bit of a sweetness to the smell. As it warms and the glass is swirled, it brings out a bit of a sulfur scent that initially was quite hidden by the hops. The warmer the brew gets, the more unavoidable the smell of sulfur becomes.

The taste of this brew is very grassy and herbal. The hop bite is lightly spicy and pierces the taste buds with a lasting sharp bitterness that gets a bit rindy. There is a very minimal biscuit like grain flavor that hardly produces any contrasting sweetness and lingers with a light bready taste inside the mouth. As I enter the second half of my glass the alcohol is finally starting to come through and make itself known accenting that pear-like fruit flavor hidden beneath the citrus and herbal aspect of the hops.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. At times this brew seems a little watery and thin. As the experience continues, the 7% abv starts to make itself known with warmth down the back of the throat. The finish of this brew is crisp and overall, easy drinking. I could see myself easily throwing down a few of these as the weather gets warmer. This ipa as well as the lineup of previous 4 in a row all have this common bond of pear-like notes in the aroma and flavor that is slightly off to me. In previous reviews I kept referring to it as the yeast, im not 100% certain that is it or not but if that was the same factor in all 5 scratch ipas id love to see them mix it up with a new strain in a future batch.

 2,507 characters

Photo of Deuane
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The next installment in the ongoing Scratch IPA series, this one being 5 of 4!? Oh my, a light golden bodied IPA...could this be the West Coast style IPA from Troegs that I have dreamed about?

A-Lightly hazed pale golden with a thin white head that reduced to a wispy veil of retention and left spotty lace.

S-Nothing but light pine and herbal spiciness initially but with some warming mild notes of citrus and tropical fruit notes emerge along with a mild floral character. Malt sweetness is subtle and barely comes through save for a meager waft of biscuit sweetness.

T-Spicy bitterness up front with floral and citrus notes emerging with warming. Malt character is subdued and secondary throughout.

M-Medium body with a mildly sharp bite and a drying finish. Long lingering bitterness.

D-To answer my initial question...no. The malt body is spot on for a classic WC IPA but the hop bill, even with the addition of Centennial and Cascade hops, misses the mark for that style. Of course, I am not saying that is what they intended to make but...it is not what I was hoping for! Too much spicy pine resin and not enough citrus and tropical fruit pop. Tweak the hop bill and this Scratch IPA could be a real winner! Scratch 39 is still the champ in this ongoing exercise.

 1,276 characters

Photo of ffejherb
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Troegs on 3/25/11.

A - Hazy pale golden liquid akin to Sunshine Pils, only a bit cloudy, with a fluffy white dollop of foam on top that reduced but deposited lots of sticky, sweaty lacing around the glass.

S - Sweet and slightly bitter nose with some herbal notes, citrus fruit and a mild perfumy character, albeit somewhat muted overall. I get a sense of a subtle lemony zing, but overall the aroma is slightly above average.

T - Scratch 43 is bitter, yes, but the hop profile is kind of muted and non-descript. Some floral and citrus notes poke out, and a grassy character develops as it warms up a bit. Malt remains sweet throughout. Finishes with a moderate lingering bitterness.

M - Medium bodied with an oily texture and dry, bittersweet finish. Overall, the mouthfeel is quote smooth and pleasant.

D - Pretty solid IPA, but it misses the mark just a bit. I still have yet to be truly blown away by one of these Scratch IPAs. They hit the Fresh Hop Ale out of the park, but I'm still waiting to be wowed by an IPA from Troegs. In the grand scheme of things, this Scratch offering falls squarely in the middle of the other four recent offerings.

 1,165 characters

Photo of orangesol
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in the Troegs tasting room into a standard pint.

A - Pours hazy yellow with a thick pillow of one and a half finger tall white head leaving thin webs of lacing down the glass.

S - Smells of muted grassy citric hops, tropical fruits; most notibly grapefruit and mango; the typical troegs house yeast, and a bit of bready malt. The hops are a bit dull but the fruit aromas make up for it a little bit, still a letdown tho.

T - Flavors are similar to the nose. The grassy hops, chewy malt, and some light tropical fruit acidity blend well to form a well balanced IPA. Finish is chewy with some lingering hop bitterness. The hops are more evident in the taste than in the nose but they are still not as forward as I would prefer. Not too bad but I still prefer #39 overall.

M - Medium body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Rich, full, feel with plenty of chewy malt and grassy hops in the finish.

O - Pretty good. I liked this one but it left me wanting a bit more. The grassy hops were good but not as forward as I was expecting. The IPA series has been a bit of a letdown thus far but if I had to choose I would say this is #3 of 5 in the series.

 1,168 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50  | next → last
Scratch Beer 43 - 2011 from Tröegs Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 44 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.