Imperial IPA | Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

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Imperial IPAImperial IPA

Brewed by:
Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
Washington, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by RoyalT on 01-14-2005

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Reviews: 29 | Ratings: 73
Photo of superdavex
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance-Poured a dark copper caramel hue with a perfect 2-inch head. Beautiful ring lacing all the way down.

Smell-Pungent HOPS!!!! I'm about ready to faint! These are the wet, fresh, citrusy hops. Also you can detect enough malt to keep this one balanced enough. So many different citrus and floral notes I couldn't name them all.

Taste-HOPS, HOPS, and more HOPS!! Also enough of a malt backbone to keep this drinkable. This is like the perfect mix of all the world-class Northwest hops with enough of a malt backbone. This is what beer tastes like in heaven.

Mouthfeel-Thick enough to make you believe it's an IIPA but not too thick for the style. So, so smooth like butter in your mouth. This beer feels like it alsost shouldn't be swallowed but just meant to be swished around in your mouth for the taste and the velvety texture but then...

Drinkability-Oh my god! I could live on this only and no food but I have to work. The welcoming, warming sensation in your belly tells you this was infact meant to be swallowed. I'm happy now. Perhaps the happiest man on the planet. Fetch me another, barkeep!

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A spectacular shade of lightly foggy tawny suffused with softly glowing coral. Boundary Bay DIPA looks like the beer equivalent of the best tropical sunset imaginable. The head is amazing as well. It's orange-influenced pale caramel in color and is as creamythick as they come. The rough-hewn surface rose over the edge of the glass on the pour and is, even now, barely below that level. The edges are higher than the center since they're clinging for all they're worth to the thick sheets of lace being deposited on the inner surface of the glass. I usually hesitate before awarding the highest score for appearance. No hesitation here.

This is, without question, one of the best aromas of any kind to ever enter my nostrils and seep into my brain. Possibly *the* best. Ever. Each deep inhale brings a megaton explosion of insanely sweet, fruity, hoppy goodness that simply cannot be improved upon. Raunchy, resinous, pungent, aggressively hoppy, grapefruity, orangey, tropical, sprucy. Mere words are inadequate to truly convey the amazing nose on the beer before me. I'll stop trying. The Best. Ever.

Wow. Just... wow. I've used this description before, but this is an IPA lover's DIPA. It isn't so much a separate style as it is an IPA on steroids; as if the proportions of malt and hops were kept intact, but the actual amount of each was tripled (at least). There's a huge maltiness to this beer that provides a stickysweet base as big as an aircraft carrier. My initial pour got a little out of hand and every time I grab the glass, there's a sticky residue that reminds me just how much malt is on hand (pun intended).

Needless to say, my focus, and the centerpiece of BB DIPA, is on the hop side of the ledger. If the malt is akin to an aircraft carrier... well, I think I'll use the atomic explosion analogy again. Wall to wall to ceiling to floor humulus lupulus. I feel as though several dozen candied hop cones are going off in my mouth like M-80's every time I drink. Ka-POW! Hell's bells boys, light the fuses again!

The flavor is a glorious mixture of sugared white grapefruit peel, sweet orange liqueur and sticky pine sap. Only better. The finish is interminably long with slowly diminishing echoes of pure hoppy pleasure. Frankly, I'm running out of adjectives for 'fu**ing great'. What to say about the body? How about full, thick, syrupy, lush, velvety? Inadequate adjectives, each and every one. The mouthfeel is hedonistic and easily keeps pace with the appearance, smell and taste. Damn the torpedoes, the 5.0s are coming fast and furious.

I haven't had this much difficulty reviewing a beer in quite some time. I usually zip through in nothing flat and enjoy the final few swallows of the bottle as I proofread. Boundary Bay DIPA though has tested me in ways that I didn't expect. I've struggled to come up with the words to describe the pleasure that this beer brought me (or rather, is bringing me; this is a growler after all and I have a long, delicious way to go).

I've wondered whether I'd ever give straight perfect scores, but I needn't wonder any longer (I always thought that it'd be an IPA though). At this moment in time, I simply cannot imagine a better beer than that which I have been sipping and shaking my head in wonderment at for the past 45 minutes. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the inestimable RoyalT for sending 'heaven in a growler' my way.

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Photo of JTrona11
4.73/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at the brewpub.

It was served in a 10oz goblet and was a orange/amber color. It had about 1/2 inch of head.

The smell was very hoppy, as beers of this style usually are.

The taste, obviously, was also very hoppy with a lot of different flavors showing up. I thought I tasted grapefruit and pine mostly.

The mouthfeel is just right, not too heavy, not too light.

The only reason drinkabilty doesn't get a 5 is because the beer is so strong (around 10%).

If you like big, strong, hoppy IPAs, then this is the beer for you.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance – This one is a deep brown in color with just a hint of orange. The head came up full and fluffy and laid on top of the liquid like a soft down-filled pillow. It was very retentive and laced the heck out of my pint glass. Kudos to Corey for the excellent pour.

Smell – The complex hops roar out of the glass like a line of horses at the starting gate of Churchill Downs. The big pine bolts to the lead and sets the pace. It is very clean and distinctive. The malts run very hard around the first turn but can’t catch the leader on the back stretch.

Taste – The big, resiny hops seem to just drip from the glass. They just ooze into the mouth like a syrupy sludge. This hop monster would give The Chunks a run for its money.

The malts are actually big here as well, but they are just drowned out by the hops. This beer would be too malty with just about any other hop profile.

Mouthfeel – This IPA is almost full in the body and is painfully dry and bitter. Drinking this ale almost hurts.

Drinkability – This one strives for balance but there’s just no way to pull it off with such a huge hop profile. This is so over-the-top it’s not even funny. Man, if you need a hop fix this is your poison. Me, I just f***in’ loved it.

Comments – This is quite possibly the hoppiest beer I’ve had to date, and living in the PacNW that’s saying a lot. This beer is just relentless. I had it two hours ago and I can still taste it. The Chunks may win out in the end, certainly it is more floral, but this thing is a mouthfull of bitter, bone dry, palate crushing hops.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.57/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a beautiful hazy copper with a thin head that fades fairly quickly to a thin cover that sticks around. The smell is a hop explosion in the glass. Rich piney, grapefruity hops with a clean, crisp finish with an underlying aroma of malt and alcohol. Fantastic aroma. The taste is lighter than expected and unfortunately can't quite match that magnificent smell. Complex with a dry barley wine taste. Not too sweet, but big alcohol flavors and wood aged overtones. The hops meld well with dry malt and wood, similar to a good old style ale. Very balanced. The finish is very bitter with lots of grapefruit juice and rind The mouthfeel is a little thicker than I would like, but still pretty nice. The carbonation is fairly low as well. This beer is not too heavy overall, very interesting and balanced. Lots of grapefruit, but the malt and alcohol help make it a nice package.

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Photo of allergictomacros
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy orange with a fairly rocky head that leaves patchy lace.

S - Aroma is huge grapefruit with lots of pith, and equally huge pine.

T - Holy cow. Enormous pine hops and a resiny sweetness are up front. Bitterness is strong in the aftertaste. This is one of the hoppiest DIPAs I've had I think.

M - Slick, oily medium-heavy body.

D - If hops are your thing, you'll like this a lot. Not very subtle, and not very accessible. Straight up hop-bomb.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

on-tap, Brouwers Hopfest

appearance: 12oz pour, unbranded snifter, bright orange-amber body, white fluff head, sticky lace

smell: lovely bouquet of hops - orange, ruby red grapefruit, pine caramel-y booze

taste: I had wanted to try this for a while - it always seems to elude me. Potent and full-flavored, oily hop resin, bold grapefruit, cascadian pine, sticky caramel. Great stuff - now where are the damn bottles hiding?

mouthfeel: big, high profile west coast ipa

overall: a definite winner of hopfest

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Photo of durrrr
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on tap this week at the Brewery.

Appearance was a hazy orange with a thin head holding good retention. The nose was overwhelmingly grapefruit and citrus. The texture and mouthfeel was smooth and creamy with slightly less carbonation than some of this style. You get hops that yields a malt balance, than more hops leading to a sweet lingering finish. It has a complex hop profile that makes it stand out and a nice malt backbone. You can notice the high abv and do get some of that alcohol taste but overall the alcohol is fairly well hidden.

Overall it is an excellent DIPA. It's only available a few times per year but worth the drive to brewery if they have it.

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Photo of John_M
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer just screams the NW. While IPA's on the East Coast are getting better and better all the time, so far I've not tasted anything there like this.

This IPA is a lovely orange/amber color, with great head retention and decent lacing. One whiff of this bad boy and you're completely blown away. Huge aroma's of pine and citrus from the hops start off the experience. On the palate this beer is incredibly complex and fruity. The hops literally blast the palate, with oily hoppiness throughout. I love DIPA, but have to confess I'd have a hard time drinking more then one of these. The hoppiness lingers in your mouth many minutes after finishing it up, ruining your palate for pretty much anything else.

This beer would make a bud drinkers head explode (not necessarily a bad thing). Fantastic IPA.

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

I had heard that this was a brewery only release, but my local shop ended up getting some. Excited, but I wasn't expecting much after trying the IPA.

A - Pours a cloudy, dirty orange with a small fizzy tan head that fades pretty quickly.

S - Citrus, pineapple and mango. Really nice.

T - Citrus pineapple up-front with a bitter pine finish.

D - Good carbonation and a chunky body.

O - I like the citrus and pine mix, they hit you in stages. This one is a winner.

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

When looking through BBs beers here on BA the other day, I was surprised to see that I hadn't reviewed this beauty. So, down to the brewery for a couple to rectify the situation.

Served in 10oz goblet. The beer pours a nice golden-orange color with about a half inch of off-white head that had good retention and nice lacing.

The aroma was very hop forward, as expected, very citrusy and had a solid malt foundation. On the tongue, the hops attack the tastebuds with the malt providing a touch of balancing sweetness.

The body is full and smooth, much fuller than most of the style. Drinkability is excellent, having multiples is WAAAY too easy.

Overall, this is one of my favorites of the style, I'm fortunate to live a seven minute walk from the pub. The walk home generally takes longer. On a side note, there is often a fair bit of variation between batches of this beer, so your experience may differ. If you're a hop-head, this is a must try. Worth the drive up if you're in the Seattle area.

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Photo of mabermud
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Today I had this beer on cask with a unique twist. Centennial hops were added to the mix. I had this beer served to me twice with a slight head. It was orange and creamy in color. The lace is ropy and viscous. The beer smells of rich, tropical fruit, and sweet pine. Floral more than citrusy. The taste of this on cask with the centennial hops, boosts the score, at least .25 points, all around. The taste is unlike the new traditional West Coast IPA/DIPA that are juicy, hoppy, sweet, and piney. The front end is loaded with a sweet, floral hop taste, backed by a good malty base. On cask, of course this has a much more creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Excellent.

I have had this on tap in the past and I never ordered a second serving. This time I had two. The cask conditioning and the added centennial hops makes this a superb imperial IPA.

Give it a go.

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Photo of Viggo
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub.

Pours a cloudy amber/orange, very thick off white head forms, settles to a thin layer, solid lacing, looks good. Smell is all PacNW, caramel, lots of pine and grapefruit, very hoppy, tons of floral, more pine, alcohol, fuck the malts, this is the West Coast! Taste is similar, solid caramel malty front, then a blast of pine and grapefruit, alcohol, floral, more grapefruit, more pine, very assertive bitterness, balls to the wall DIPA. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, very drinkable, very hoppy, nicely done!

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Photo of canucklehead
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was on tap at the One Eye pub at the Panther Room in Seattle. They called it their One Eye Ipa though it was an Imperial. The beer is orange gold with a huge grapefruit nose. The hops were in force in the taste but the balance police stopped the rampage and brought the beer home. Way too drinkable much like Double Daddy from Speakeasy. Awesome choice for a house beer.

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Photo of mdaschaf
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured a slightly hazy orange/ruby color with a small off-white head on top. Decent retention with thin lacing down the sides.

S: Nice citrus aroma, with some deeper tropical fruit as it warms. A bit of pineapple and grapefruit. Slightly sweet with a bit of caramel.

T: Similar to the aroma, some tropical fruit, grapefruit, pineapple, a bit of orange mixed with some malty sweetness, a surprising amount.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: A nice DIPA, was hoping for just a bit more out of it, but would certainly drink it again.

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Photo of papat444
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to derek for this one.

Pours a nice copper body. Flavor is resiny, spicy rye, sweet, doused with cedar and peaches in the finish. Really loved this one, felt raw a bit.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a medium coppery amber with a two finger off-white head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of pine and slightly skunky hops, light caramel malt and citrus, somewhat subdued. Flavor follows, but more assertive, fresh tasting pine and citrus hops well melded to a caramel malt body, pleasant citrus notes. Finishes with citrus and long lasting pine and herbal hops bitterness. Medium bodied with some creaminess. A classic, well made Northwest style IPA, great balance and complexity to the hops. Really glad to have finally snagged a bottle of this, which usually doesn't get too far from its home in Bellingham.

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Photo of draheim
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz into a tulip. Pours a clear amber w/ a big fluffy off-white head, some thin film of lace. Lazy carbonation.

Aroma is big pine and citrus, some earthy tropical notes. Dank.

Taste follows nose. Heavy on the grapefruit and pine, with some heavier tropical flavors in the background. Malt bill is a blend of caramel and pale malts. Alcohol is not entirely masked, but in no way dominant. Just a little boozy heat comes with the swallow. Powerfully bitter on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, almost heavy. Oily, slightly chewy.

Overall a big, agressive DIPA that manages to pull off a pretty good balance.

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Photo of jvillefan
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: A beautiful golden body but even with a rough pour there was a very small/nearly nonexistent head.

S: Very interesting. It has a blended caramel bitterness to it. There is sweet caramel with pine and grapefruit.

T: Hop on the front and back ends of this beer. There is grapefruit in the beginning followed by a rich caramel sweetness. The finish is a very piny hop.

M: Nice heavy body but it is lacking in carbonation.

O: A good IPA. Not worth seeking out but worth a try if you see it on a shelf.

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Photo of grub
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Viggo was nice enough to share this one. thanks eric!

22oz bottle. sampled march 21/08.

pours hazy+chunky orangey amber with a small dense yellow head. the head drops slowly and leaves lots of lace behind.

aroma is good. biscuit malt. bit of bread+cracker. grapefruit and orange. powdery hops. light alcohol. touch of pine.

taste is good. medium-high bitterness level. grapefruit and tangerine. bread and biscuit malt. bit of pine. slightly powdery hops. bit of alcohol. touch of honey sweetness. bit of caramel too.

mouthfeel is good. medium-low carbonation level works well. medium body with the hops giving it a fairly drying finish.

drinkability is good. the alcohol is hidden well and the hop bitterness is balanced nicely too. the chunky hazy appearance throws you off, but it makes up for it.

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Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: 3/4" tan head that left a nice lacing over deep amber liquid with good clarity.

S: Sweet caramel malt and citrus hops are what stand out.

T: Quite spicy, peppery, and citrusy hops with a nice amount of pine with a sweet caramel and somewhat nutty finish. The finish also had a certain amount of alcohol to it.

M: Medium viscosity and carbonation. The finish is somewhat drying from the alcohol.

O: A good Imperial IPA for those who like their IPAs bitter and sweet at the same time.

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

22oz bomber courtesy of the outstanding BA and Boundary Bay employee known as beertunes. No freshness date, and no abv percentage is listed on the label.

Poured into an Iron Goat snifter, this was a cloudy dark amber, almost russet. It took on a color closer to burnt orange when held up to light. Big, creamy-looking beige head that left lots of lace on the sides of the glass.

A thickly fragrant, resiny hop bouquet greeted the nose. Mix of bitter and sweet. Less citrusy than most IPAs.

The hops are upfront in the taste, and they are bitter. Those looking for primarily citrusy hop flavors might not be into this. The taste is bitter and sweet, in that order. Bitter hops with a more piney than grapefruity twang, followed by a sweet, slightly berry-ish taste. The finish is dry yet resiny, and there’s a big hop taste on the tongue afterwards.

Medium bodied, with a slightly thick, resiny mouthfeel.

An interestingly different spin on the IIPA. I think this bottle is all I want of it for the moment, as it’s not quite my cup of tea when it comes to beers of the style that I’d want to drink several of. In fact, this is a textbook example of a beer I’d like to see sold in 12 or 16oz format. Nevertheless, I’d drink it again because, although it’s not my normal idea of a beer of this style, it’s still quite tasty, and makes for an interesting change of pace.

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Photo of Rutager
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours bright orange-amber withj almost a finger of off white head that leaves some sexy lacing.

Smell. Sweet caramel malt, dank skunk nugs, oranges, pineapple and grapefruit.

Taste. Sweet oranges, pineapple, grapefruit and plenty of caramel malts.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body, medium-low carbonation. A little sticky.

Overall. Very nicely balanced big west coast ipa. Yum!

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Photo of Florida9
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Mostly clear orange in color (becomes cloudy in later pours due to sedimentation being dislodged). Forms a respectably half inch of light tan colored head that reduces to a thick ring and some surface coating. Some light lacing.

S: Lots of citrus. Orange and grapefruit with a good dose of alcohol. Some caramel malt, but it is in the background.

T: Starts off with a mild orange juice sweetness before turning rather alcoholic with notes of citrus hops, orange, and grapefruit with pine to a lesser extent. A bit of pine resin bitterness on the finish.

M: Medium bodied with appropriate carbonation. Moderate bitterness with a mix of soapiness and alcoholic heat.

O: This beer has a lot of potential - there are aspects of it that I like a lot, but the alcohol is too forward for the chosen hops and soapy mouthfeel is a bit distracting. Still a good brew, though.

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Photo of Derek
3.93/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on-tap at the brewery, 5 oz sample.

A: Copper-bronze, white head, nice lace.

S: Malty caramel, with a huge hit of Northwest hop (floral and citrous) odours.

T: Hop flavour is over-the-top. Too much citrous flavour. A little bready malt and caramel in the background. Some alcohol flavour in the aftertaste. Good bitterness, but too much Northwest hop flavour... it just overpowers the brew. If they had it in the bottle, I'd lay one down for a year.

M: Moderate body and carbonation. Slightly oily, with a slightly dry aftertaste.

D: The citrous hop flavour is in your face, but it's still fairly drinkable.

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Imperial IPA from Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
4.23 out of 5 based on 73 ratings.
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