The Big Dipper | Little Creatures Brewing Company

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The Big DipperThe Big Dipper
20 Ratings
The Big DipperThe Big Dipper

Brewed by:
Little Creatures Brewing Company

Style: American Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by dansmcd on 10-19-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 20 |  Reviews: 18
Reviews by foles:
Photo of foles
3.05/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a copper colour with a light non creamy head that fades pretty quickly. Not much on the aroma, some grassy hops, bits of passionfruit. Somewhat harsh on the palate with bush, tree like flavours with an light undercurrent of pine, citrus and grass. Seems very bitter for 55ibu, but given it is malty and the alcohol Is well hidden, it must be due to the harshness ? In summary not quite the clean, explosive hoppy beer it should be. Still quite drinkable though.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of MrKennedy
3.13/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Imperial pint bottle, thanks to mulder1010 for arranging this. Poured into a Lost Abbey tulip.

Has an old gold colour, with just a touch of orange. Good clarity. Pours with two fingers of foam with good retention. No lacing.

Smell is very much fruit salad early, with grapefruit, passionfruit and melon being the dominant aromas. After a little while it turns to an oily hop resin smell that pales compared to the fruit salad that was there to start.

Taste is mostly oily hop resin. Little bit of grapefruit, but certainly not big and I don't think is in the league of a DIPA.

Mouthfeel is oily, very little bitterness early or on the mid palate and only a touch late.

It's not a bad beer, its pretty easy to drink, but doesn't really do the DIPA style any justice. Worth having, just don't expect a Double IPA and you'll be happy.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a large fading head.
Nost shows tropical fruit, pine and grapfruit along with a soft clean malt presence. Flavours mainly focus on the pine, grapefruit and some caramel malt. Later on a some kumquats are noticeable followed by a bold bitterness.
Nice moderately high carbonation.

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Photo of spicelab
3.77/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brilliant orange, with a sudsy off-white head, bit over a finger. Falls to a slight film. No lacing.

Nice and tropical, with orange blossom, passionfruit, rockmelon, grapefruit, candied citrus rind, some resiny pine and a touch of herbal freshness. Malt character is a bit subdued. There's some caramelised sugar notes and a bready pungency, although that might be due to the Simcoe.

Strong and syrupy orange, passionfruit and rockmelon. Smattering of fresh mint. Previous reviewer was spot on about the bitterness which arrives after the tropical flavours have mostly subsided.

Despite the syrupy quality, mouthfeel is a touch light for the ABV. Carbonation is moderate and bitterness is pretty benign for a DIPA.

Very nicely done. Good hop selection and no bad bits. Doesn't quite have the gravitas of the bigger DIPAs but it does have great drinkability.

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Photo of vacax
3.82/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle thanks to Jeremy. Poured into a tulip glass. Deep orange with off-white moderate to small head, good retention and spotty lacing. Bright bouquet of pine, sap, orange oil, and traces of cookielike malt and earth. Flavor is sharply piney, with flowers, orange blossoms, and orange rind. Full bitterness, clean citrus and pine follows though and finish is sharp with lingering flowers and light malt notes. Malt sweetness is present, but doesn't compete with the hops, light and well carbonated body reminds me of the West Coast here in the US.

I might even say the West Coast of Australia understands the DIPA more than the East Coast here. I have had the opportunity to try a number of brews from Australia over the last year or so, and Little Creatures is doing my favorite things down under. Well done!

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Photo of eric5bellies
3.56/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drank from my Duvel tulip glass.

A - Pours a clear Golden Orange colour, with a two fingered White head that reduces to a decent film, that does lace a little.

S - Aromas of pineapple, mango and tropical fruits. Not big but very present.

T - Bits of orange peel and pine up front, grapefruit also present, the hops and bitterness on the finish are quite pronounced and the zing is long lasting. A little sickly at the end as well.

M - Medium body and carbonation.

O - I like this one and is a good example of the style. Would have liked to have seen a little more ABV to make it more of a hop bomb. Alex is heading in the right direction with this one, and hope for more of the same in future SB brews.

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Photo of joecast
3.41/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper color. Medium high carbonation with lots of fine bubbles streaming to he surface. Good retention of the frothy white head. Good lacing.

Decent citrus aroma without being spectacular. Backed up by a bit of grassy herbal character. Enjoyable but average for the style.

Big bold hops make for a big bold flavor. That's pretty obvious here. Bitterness is matched by hop flavor making this quite well balanced (and I hate saying that for a DIPA). The abv is well hidden though enough malt is present to carry the beer. Very well made but feel it may already be past it's prime. The (considerable) hop flavor seems a bit less fresh than it could be. Not sure exactly when it was released but when dealing with this much hop presence it can start to fade very quickly.

Certainly an A for effort on this one. Mouthfeel and drinkability both shine here. Wish I could have gotten to this sooner or tried it on tap, but this beer does nothing to harm LCs reputation with hops.

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Photo of Macca
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a bright dark golden with a generous fluffy white head. Slightly cloudy.

Strong hop aromas that jump out of the glass as the beer is poured. Lots of tropical fruit. Pine resin.

The palate doesn't match the hoppiness of the nose. They are there but hiding behind the malt.

A little bit of sweetness. Would like a bit more bitterness.

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Photo of Brad_Withers
4.24/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of mulder1010
2.9/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

568 ML poured into a tulip

Probably the most anticipated beer from LC in a while

A-- Poured a clear, darker orange amber color. Bright white one finger head that slowly faded to film leaving a few traces of lacing. A few small carbonation bubbles here and there. Good head retention on swirling, goes to more of an off white head before slowly fading back to film.

S-- Peach, apricot, pineapple, and orange. Nose is a bit soft but it is good. Not a big malt backbone but it is there. Slight bits of sweetness in the nose but really equates to a fruit salad.

T-- Pungent orange with a little bit of peach and apricot. Just a touch bit medicinal and not forward hop driven. More fruit and touches of oil and sweetness.

M-- Slick and slightly oily. Medium feel and low carbonation. Falls apart once it warms up, very pungent and all over the board. Much better colder and better integrated flavors colder. Bitterness is more in the mid and back of palate. Pretty good feel cold. Not so much over about 12 degrees.

O-- Only negative is that it is a little harsh in the feel at times. Slightly boozy but not that bad. Drink a little colder and it is very solid. Nothing sexy about this at all

Note--- decide to change score as just not that great

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Photo of mungus
4/5  rDev +7%

Photo of vancurly
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The latest edition in this up-and-down range of 'single batches'.

Pours a brilliant amber with lemony highlights. Filtered to clarity. Off-white pillowy head, which is sustained by the strong, finely-beaded carbonation.

Aromas of fruit bowl, with passionfruit, honeydew, pineapple, and some pine resin.

The head is oozing hop oils, with citrus & pine dominant. Into the body of the beer, and there's a counterpoint of candy sherbet, faint honeycomb, and breadcrusts. The hop dominance makes this 'West Coast' I expect. Alcohol heat not evident.

Feels medium bodied, backed up by prickly bitterness, which persists. I prefer a richer body ('East Coast' ?).

Definitely for hop lovers; a pint bottle is probably enough.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.87/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to @epiclurk for the bottle. I believe purchased from the Clock Hotel bottle shop in Surry Hills.

Pours a surprisingly light-bodied, but deeply coloured golden hue. Very clear, with a fine, but insubstantial and minimally persistent head of white. The body holds the carbonation reasonably well when it's tilted, implying that there is some heft to it. Looks reasonable enough, but not at the top of the style.

Nose is lovely, with a piquant zesty citrus character balanced beautifully with deeper and more vegetative resin characters. I don't know the hopping regime, but I suspect New Zealand hops, or perhaps Citra in the mix in dry-hopping. It's a really lovely nose, giving a wide, but beautifully balanced swathe of hop fragrances. Joyous.

Unfortunately, that's the apex of the beer. The flavour, while still pleasant enough, is much lighter than I expected, and truly lacking in bitterness. Big sweet malt characters dominate, with a slight twinge of toffee or butterscotch on the back where the hop oils should clear it out. This leaves a rather disappointing, and slightly meaty character on the aftertaste.

Feel is smooth, but very light. Carbonation is very low, which also makes the palate feel a bit limp.

Not a bad drop, but it could and should have been better. The nose is wonderful, but it really needed something bigger and bolder on the palate. It felt unbalanced towards malt, which is not the direction you want to take in a DIPA, especially a "big" one.

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Photo of xylophonica
4.07/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Vibrant orangey-sunset colour with a dash of ruby somewhere in the spectrum. Delicate finger of head on top. Minimal carbonation activity and some mild lacing.

S - Quite strongly hopped with some sweet fruits; orange, lime and strangely a solid dose of tart kiwi/grapefruit. Nice malty/phenolic sensation as well.

T - First hit is a big IPA bitterness with some malt. The fruity tastes also lend some tart sourness as well. The kiwi/grapefruit mentioned above is coming through along with slightly bitter orange. Can really taste the Cascade hops used in brewing.

M - After the initial bitterness the feel itself is full-bodied but not overly exceptional otherwise. Plenty of sour & bitter flavours to keep the palate busy.

O - An interesting beer, not sure I've ever had a drink brewed with 7 different kinds of hops before.. According to the side of the label this drop has an IBU rating of 55, which is extraordinary but after drinking it I'd say believable. Hellishly bitter but that does subside as the malt coating develops. Well worth a trip for those who appreciate this style of beer.

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Photo of dansmcd
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Two fingers of soapy, creamy head cap the clear orange amber below. Impressive sloppy drools of lace around the glass.

S - As expected, big hop aromas. In the American fashion in that it is quite piney. Passionfruit and citrus heavy also.

T - Hop forward (passionfruit and orange flavours), although doesn't quite match the aroma in terms of intensity. Bitterness is of course prominent (55 IBUs) but not quite at the level you might expect from a DIPA.

M - Moderate to full body and reasonably creamy. Medium carbonation levels. Dry bitter finish. Happily, no glass shards noticeable.

O - Nice effort. A very enjoyable beer no question, but for a DIPA it lacks punch comparative to the big players.

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Photo of ADZA
3.82/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light see through copper hue which leaves a creamy sudsy two finger head and a nice rim of clingy lacing,the smell is floral hops,honey,light pine and citrus,the mouthfeel is light bodied and lacking with tastes of caramel,boiled candy,grapefruit,orange zest,a touch of piney hops and finished with a nice citrus bitterness and overall its nice and very sessionable even though it carries a big ABV and i would love to see this become part of the regular lineup cheers.

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Photo of heygeebee
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden amber orange, one finger pillowy head that dies after a while, leaving some filmy lace.

Aromas of pine, hops, grapefruit, and a really well balanced taste to follow that offsets intial hops on front palate with a balanced malt aftertaste. Full bodied flavour.

Let down by light and somewhat watery mouthfeel. Carbonation dies a bit quicker than I expected and would have liked.

So - have LC delivered? Sort of... this and the Dreadnought are much more on form offerings. Needs to be drunk cold. A Big Beer, but quite into the big flavour territory of something like ICON tho.

Half a point extra on overall due to price point.

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Photo of danieelol
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is rockmelon golden. Nice head and lacing.

Smell is reserved tropical fruits. Definite rockmelon. Fermenting fruits. Somewhat reminiscent of a slightly more aromatic Torpedo. Pine/metallic notes intermittently.

Taste is more rockmelon and pine. Quite dry, again reminiscent of Torpedo. The bittering hops initially seem strangely done and not entirely well integrated. Nose and taste take on some herbal qualities. There's also white grape to be found. The taste has the dryness of a single IPA.

Fairly thin body, medium carb.

Overall an enjoyable effort certainly. They did the style justice with a Torpedo-ish interpretation. Very sessionable stuff in spite of the ABV. Have to rule this a success.

Edit: Yeah, it's not really as good as I first thought. Dropped this one's scores a bit.

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Photo of dgilks
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clearish golden colour with a small, white head. Not too bad.

Rounded mango and tropical fruit aroma with some light sweetness. Somewhat one dimensional.

Slightly sweet malt with a moderately-low bitterness and moderate tropical fruit flavour. There is some good grape and hard fruit notes as well. Not too bad and a nice American IPA, I'm not sure it is really a DIPA though.

Medium body with moderately-high carbonation. Fine.

This is a nice IPA and while it isn't as big and bold as some of the American and NZ examples, it still has very good flavour and is hard to beat at the price point.

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Photo of LittleCreature
4.16/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4.5
Pours an inch of loose, cream coloured foam head which recedes to a thin layer over a clear body of deep amber to orange. A little spotty lacing, good head retention.

Smell - 3.5
Despite the use of seven hop varieties, the smell is less complex than most beers of the style. Perfumed aromas of citrus fruits, musk lollies, hints of pine and a little spiciness.

Taste - 4.5
Light backbone of biscuity pale malt, a little caramel and seven hops combining to provide flavours of candied orange peel, sweet grapefruit and ripe nectarines. Alcoholic warmth is there, but only becomes obvious with increasing temperature. Finishes bone dry with assertive bitterness.

Mouthfeel - 4.5
Beautiful mouthfeel comes from very fine carbonation that comes across as creamy and a smooth, medium body with minimal stickiness.

Overall - 4.0
Very drinkable for a beer of 7.8% alcohol. 55 IBUs suggests IPA rather than DIPA, as does the flavour profile and drinkability. Less complex than you would expect for 7 hop varieties. Style aside, this is probably Little Creatures best single batch release to date and one of the best ever IPAs brewed in Australia. Excellent.

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The Big Dipper from Little Creatures Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.74 out of 5 with 20 ratings