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Deadlift Imperial IPA | Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

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very good
154 Reviews
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Deadlift Imperial IPADeadlift Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by msubulldog25 on 01-08-2010

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Reviews: 154 | Ratings: 238
Photo of rodbeermunch
4.02/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite Widmer beers of all time. Probably the favorite. Nice orange and amber appearance, 1/2" white head. Very good Nelson dry hop aroma, dank, musty, arm-pit like in a good way.

Nice clean yeast profile, deep, dank hop notes still, bitterness not excessive, hides alcohol very well. Still gives off some tropical fruit clusters. If you take away the Widmer name and simply release this in a geographic area that doesn't have a bunch of other breweries or is 'rare' you would see rating inflation by about 25% for this beer. On beeradvocate, you realize how to subjectively adjust a lot of cumulative ratings. Just gotta factor in rarity, geographical remoteness, lines, neckbeards, corporate ownership etc. . .

In Widmer's case, I would venture a guess that their beers are marked down 10-25% based on all those factors.

More for me.

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Photo of popery
3.25/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From notes, 7/11/11. Nelson IIPA version. Appearance is fine. Mildly cloudy, bright orange. A dissipating head that stuck around for awhile as a thin film of bubbles. The aroma is grassy with tropical fruits - more kiwi/papaya than pineapple, like some hops. A bit grapey, too. Not quite strong enough for my taste but pretty good. On the palate, it starts out with some hop resin flavor with an alright crystal malt backbone, but the finish mars things with a big booze note that goes particularly poorly with the grassy bitterness. Mouthfeel is, well, hot. Plus, the beer is a bit sticky. Didn’t much like this one, despite the hop choice.

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear copper with a loose white head that settles quickly to a razor thin blanketing. Tight bubbles build a modest white halo of lacing. The nose is intensely tropical and citrusy with an expected amount of sugar to build the beer's medium mouthfeel and help balance out the beer's biting alcohol and lingering bitterness. Candied pineapple is the first thing that comes to mind...
This is a relatively straight forward DIPA with easy drinkability and a reserved bitterness. The beer's alcoholic bite intensifies as the beer warms making it harder to continue drinking. Overall it's good, but doesn't blow me away.

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Photo of jifigz
3.23/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass

Beer is a slightly hazy burnt orange color with a small head. It dead leave some decent lacing on the glass as it was being drank. The aroma is slight hop floral/citrus with alcohol present in the nose. The flavor is malty up front which gives way to some honey like sweetness and a touch of hop flavor. The ending is some hoppy bitterness and alcohol. The MF is pretty light and wet in the mouth. The beer doesn't finish all that dry.

This is a pretty average Double/Imperial IPA. It leaves a lot to be desired and I will never buy a case of it again.

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Photo of otispdriftwood
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was traveling when I tried this beer and almost didn't even bother trying it based on the Bros. rating. There was another IPA I wanted to try at the same bar but they were out so I figured why not try this. Just goes to show that everybody's tastes are different. I didn't find this beer to be too different from most other DIPAs in terms of smell, taste or drinkability. It had that hop forward presence, good fruity/citrusy aroma and the alcohol didn't feel like an 8.6% ABV. In fact, once I tried it, I went back to it instead of going to a tried and true selection. All in all, I would have this beer again, in fact, I may seek it out now that I'm home.

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Photo of CHickman
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer notes from March 2011: pours clear orange amber color with a creamy 1 finger off white fluffy head that faded quickly, leaving decent lacing.

Smells of floral hops, citrus hops, grapefruit, orange peel, sweet malt, light alcohol, grains, caramel and more fruit…very hoppy nose overall.

Tastes of big citrus hops, grapefruit, orange peel, floral hops, sweet malt, grains, caramel, herbs, and alcohol; the alcohol is not shy and almost over the top, so it is not a session beer. The burn made it hard to throw back quickly, but still tasted OK.

Mouthfeel was creamy and smooth, with a medium body, average carbonation, but a tad too much alcohol which almost negates the bitterness. It was an OK DIPA, but not one I would run back to try.

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Photo of philbe311
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Two fingers worth of light airy pillow-like egg shell colored head... A vibrant pale amber color... Brisk carbonation... A decent bit of lacing clings to the glass after each and every sip...

S - Citrus... Bready malts... Canned peaches...

T - A light malt base... Orange zest... A kiss of grapefruit... Pineapple... A light artificial sweetness throughout...

M - Medium bodied... Light carbonation... A bit sticky... Sleek... Slightly chewy...

D - A respectable American Double / Imperial IPA, but far from the head of the class... Hides the 8.6% abv well... Even and consistent...

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Photo of illidurit
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass. Ruddy bronze color with a nice lacy white head. Muted aroma, some grapefruit and sweet pineapple. Flavor is boozy and sweet, with tendrils of candied pineapple and crystal malt snaking across the tongue. Also a bit of moldy apricot and flabby caramel. Tastes better than what I’ve described but it doesn’t come together real well. An entirely average concept boosted up to ’decent’ solely by virtue of having Nelson hops.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap in a pint glass at Hal & Al's on 10/1/11

Clear, scorched amber. One finger head. Thin, smooth retention. Impressive swaths of thick, drippy lace.

Hop oils abound in the aroma; slick and juicy. Dank and tropical; seems like Simcoe. Pineapple, peach, tangerine, mango. Smells catty, too. Not much malt, just a dry, grainy offset.

Tastes just as oily and slick. Not very boozy, though. Some pine notes and compacted tropical hops. Pretty good hop flavor without being too bitter. Grainy malts add body but don't influence the flavor too much. Bitterness builds over time.

Juicy upfront with each sip. Medium-full, slick feel. Carbonation is on the lower end of the spectrum. Finishes oily with residual cattiness.

Not too shabby. Good, but not captivating. 10-12oz would have been enough.

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the saloon at the music factory in Charlotte. Poured into a sam Adams perfect pint glass. Sticky lacing affixes itself to the glass. Aroma is grapefruit and pine mainly. Taste is biting bitterness. This one is nicely out of balance, delivering on the promise suggested by the tap handle. No letdown. Nice flavor and fairly easy to drink considering the high abv.

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Photo of zrab11
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a nice amber color wit a 1 finger off white head

S- Has nie citrus notes up front followed by some hops and malts, also has some hints of peach and bread

T- Has a nice sweet hoppiness up front has alittle bit of a grassiness flavor in the middle and finishes with a bready bitterness

M-Medium to light bodied with decent carbonation

D-Overall this was a decent IPA. it was alittle hoppy and the other flavors took a back seat. Still a decent brew and would try again.

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Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wierd DIPA, like wine and beer thrown together as when you are disposing of beer and wine at a party tossing it in one cup and someone comes along and drinks it. Very piney,minty, grassy, weedy. Big hop aroma. Cloudy grapefruit and one quarter inch of retained head. Loads of lace. Full mouthfeel,and yet palate shredder.Very drinkable but unique hop juice.Good white winey finish.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Yard House - Irvine

A: This one pours amber in color with a finger of slightly off-white head. Minimal lacing is present.

S: A nice citrus note up front, mostly tangerine and grapefruit. Sweet tropical fruits are also there, mostly pineapple and a bit of mango. Very mild pine with a hint of peach on the back. Underneath it all, a little bit of bready malts.

T: The fruit character is quite sweet. Big pineapple and peach flavor with some sweeter citrus notes (and some grapefruit to a lesser extent). Just a little bit of grass and some bready malts. Not too much in the way of bitterness, though there is some pine flavor.

M: Medium in both body and carbonation.

O: I was pleasantly surprised by this beer. I've been considering picking this up at the store for awhile, but always passed. Looks like it wouldn't have been a bad choice.

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Photo of afterforever
1.52/5  rDev -59.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

I had this beer on tap at the Green Leaf Cafe in New Towne Williamsburg, VA. The Green Leaf has 64 beers on tap and I was looking forward to trying some fine ales. It looked nice in the glass highball glass? however it had what seemed to be a soapy flavor. It was different but in a bad way. Maybe it is the hops. I am a big IPA fan but I left this one on the table.

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Photo of kevosbob
2.8/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Widmer Brothers Brewing Company capitalizes on brewing well balanced ales, using unfamiliar hops, and producing a lineup of “feel good beers” that everyone can appreciate. Deadlift Imperial IPA is no exception to the Widmer style but, this imperial beer may be a few pounds light of a good workout. With a unique citrus quality, well balanced body, and an 8.6% alcohol by volume, this “deadlift” won’t mess up your back but you may wish you had more than a four pack to show for it.

This beer pours a beautiful butterscotch/orange color into a average pint glass. The head appears a seafoam white that dissipates relatively quickly. The Nelson Sauvin hops from New Zealand brings a beautiful aroma of citrus fruit and berries to this beer. The slight astringent note gives me the impression that this beer will be big and bold while the citrus notes gets the hops lover in me excited.

Tasting this beer makes me think that it’s not imperial ale, it tastes too smooth and mild. The Nelson Sauvin hops are interesting and I appreciate the new style but I feel they leave a slight chalky taste underneath my tongue. However the the malts leave a wonderful caramel taste blending well with the lemon-grass/citrus notes also found in the hops. “Not too fruity, no too much citrus, a very hoppy balance of flavors and qualities.” The light body lends to a great lingering flavor but sadly dies off quicker than I would like an Imperial IPA to do.

This is a great beer if you are just starting to workout your taste buds for big hoppy beers. Unfortunately, you’ll have to do a lot of ‘deadlifts’ before you’re ready to lift a big imperial ale. This is a drinkable beer because it doesn’t pound your taste buds into submission with alcohol and hops, but that’s also what makes big beers fun. This beer just isn’t exciting enough for me to give a high recommendation, however it is good enough for me to enjoy time after time.

My Beer Rating: 2.8

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Photo of josiahschlender
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Definitely couldn't resist trying Widmer's stab at an impy IPA for only $5.88 per four pack on sale in Portland. Cheapest of the style I think I've ever seen. Full disclosure, my general opinion of Widmer is that it's one of the worst in the crowded field of Portland breweries

Deadlift doesn't look too bad on the pour. Nice rich golden-amber color. Not too abundant head that fades fairly quickly and leaves little lace.

The aroma has sweet, fruity aromatic hops, but also a big sting of alcohol. 8.6 ABV isn't hidden at all on the nose, perhaps the least I can remember of this style. It only grow with warmth, too. Maybe some sugary malts. The alcohol isn't actually offensive to me, but's just not appealing either.

Flavor has a lot of hops: sweet, piney, fruity and bitter. Flavor profile improves with warmth for sure. With some warmth the bitterness mellows out some and allows a little bit of sweet pale malts to sneak in. Not a malt-forward DIPA though.

Feel is fairly slick with a medium body and low carbonation. Finish has decent length, but lacks anything to compliment the bittering hops.

I'm kinda sad. I wanted Widmer to succeed, but the standard for this style is so high. It definitely falls short of average for the style, but that aside, it's still a mildly drinkable and interesting beer. Not one I'm going to return to; I'd rather get a good IPA without the alcohol burn that has better flavor and still rings up cheaper at the cash register.

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Photo of BeerOnTheWall
3.49/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 4 pack at the local Bevmo. Poured 12 oz bottle into a 14 oz Budweiser Signature glass (don't hate...its a good glass for 12 oz IPAs).

Full pour gave off a thick fluffy 1-2 inch head that stuck around for 5 or 6 minutes leaving behind plenty of lacing. Crystal clear light orange color with good amount of carbonation bubbling up. Very nice looking beer.

The smell is disappointing. Not much going on here for an Imperial IPA. Average sweet malt is there but where's the hops? Faint hop resin and orange rind...but its not much. Slight alcohol sting in the nose.

Taste is pretty much what I was suspecting after the smell. There is a decent caramel malt sweetness that is nice. But again, other than a fairly persistent bitter finish, there is not much complexity to the hops. The bitter at the end saves it a bit. 8.6% abv. while noticeable on the nose, is hidden pretty well when you drink this.

The mouthfeel is nice. Medium bodied with good carbonation. Coats the palate and lingers for a second, then clears pretty quickly leaving behind a little hop astringency.

Overall this beer was all over the map for me. It's put together well...pours very nice...good body and co2...good bitter. It's enjoyable, but it lacks the complexity that an Imperial IPA should have. You could back the ABV off just a little, call it an IPA and no one would notice.

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Photo of obrike
3.23/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

4 pack of this DIPA at Specs in Round Rock going for 5.99 today.

Decent look...orange-caramel hue, spider web lacing. Above average.

Fruity...very fruity smell...mango, strawberry, other assorted berries....did not catch much malt...just an assault of fresh fruity hops. I like it, but did i mention this was a fruity smelling beer?

Hmmm...well, the stawberries certainly come out front and center in this one, a bit of mango as well..followed by bitter pine hops...would be a lot happier if there was some malt backbone.Not bad, but it could be so much better.

Pretty easy to drink...hides the nearly 9% abv quite well, but too unbalanced to have more than one per sitting.

Many better DIPAs in this wonderful world to choose from my friends. In a nutshell...it's a Maharaja wannabe.

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Photo of surprenant1138
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into snifter. Almost no head, nice slow lacing. Dark amber colored. Aroma is sweet, fruity-like berries, citrusy and some hops. Mouthfeel is of a medium body, and dry. Taste is as the aroma, like berries, slightly citrusy, and hoppy. It tastes like it is building up to something, and the flavor just drops and disappears. Potential for greatness is there, and just fades. Good sipping beer though. Still refreshing.

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Photo of keith712
3.21/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a nonic tumbler....

Appearance: Medium amber and fairly clear. Head goes thick but fades a bit, leaves a nice spider web on the glass.

Nose: Some pine, floral hops, kind of sweet. Malty for sure on the back end. Not real exciting and a bit lackluster, I want/expected more of a hops presence.

Taste: Hops start out, but a malty presence comes on and kills the bitter really fast. Not sweet, but certainly less hops character than I expected. For an imperial IPA, this seems a bit...plain? Not enough hops to balance out the back end maltiness. As it warms, the malts become more pronounced and over ride the hops completely.

Mouthfeel: Medium thickness, not a lot of carbonation and a bit flat. Not much hops bitterness sticks to the inner cheeks. OK, nothing special.

Overall: Well, for an imperial, I expected more. In this class of craft beer, this is not a standout. I give it a 3.5 and given a choice of several other IPA's (Stone, Sierra Nevada, Avery), I would not drink this one again. Far better than cheap pissy beer but weak in the category it claims to exist in.

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Photo of BucBasil
3.26/5  rDev -14%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the 12oz bottle into a large snifter.

A: The beer is a dark hazy amber/orange color with strangely little to no head. What was there was offwhite.

S: Fruity hops and citrus rind unsurprisingly dominant with a sturdy malt backbone.

T: Malty/bready first sip with a bitter, drying midpalate of mostly citric hops. There is a somewhat syrupy caramel note in there somewhere. Finishes somewhat balanced with hints of citrus and a creamy sweetness in the back.

O: Not bad but there are so many better ones out there. Unspectacular.

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Photo of david18
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a seven ounce pour of it as a part of a sampler at Pour 24 at Las Vegas’ New York New York Casino. It was one among two IPA’s in the sampler and definitely the stand out beer among everything.

The color was a hazy orange/amber with a decent amount of carbonation.

Aroma was very hoppy, primarily citrus with some pine and malt coming through.

Flavor was intensely hopped (probably not a good beer to be drinking along side other beers) with some alcohol coming through but not too much.

This is one of the better IPAs/Double IPAs Ive had in a long time and I'll look for it again.

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Photo of budgood1
3.27/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours out a slightly hazed copper colour with a fair amount of foam retaining some lace. hefty juicy hop aroma...bubblegum and some spice. hard to pick out the malt...this one smells like a hop bomb. hoppy flavour...a bit soapiness up front with a touch of boozy spice. pale malt flavours seem weak and timid compared to the hop characteristics. aside from the soapy aspect to the taste, there is some tropical fruit notes that weave in and out with hints of resin and pine. very little back end bitterness. seems unbalanced, even for a IIPA. medium bodied for such a big beer...although the mouthfeel is pretty seemingly smooth for such a highly hopped beer. no grating bitterness on the tongue. it does have a fair degree of drinkability for the style, quite approachable if you might be new to the style.

overall i was disappointed...seems like a poor mans version of hop stoopid. tropical fruit flavour hop bill was a plus, malt bill and lack of bitterness was a detraction.

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Photo of Chizoad
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Out at a bar with the usual Bud/BL/Newcastle options, but saw an odd green tap in the mix, so I gave it a go without really knowing what it was. I am happy I did.

Deep amber DIPA and a healthy head which settled to about a half finger layer throughout the drink.

Good aroma of citrusy hops, and clear malt sweetness for backing. Although I wouldn't rate the smell higher than any other attribute, it probably was the best aspect of this beer.

When cold, the malt couldn't stand up to the hops in this. Powerful citrus and bittering hops. After it warmed it was better balanced.

Boozy at first, but a relatively easy drinker.

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Photo of BarrelO
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Semi-opaque amber body with a miniscule head that leaves a bit of lacing.

S: Some vague fruitiness and caramel-ish notes.

T: Heavy on the malt with not a lot of bitterness. Fruitiness from the hops and some caramel and toffee notes.

M: Medium in body and carbonation.

D: A pretty good beer overall, but not much of an IPA. If you're jonesing for hops, prepare to be disappointed, but if you just want a solid strong ale, give it a shot.

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Deadlift Imperial IPA from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
3.79 out of 5 based on 238 ratings.
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