Decadent Imperial IPA | Ska Brewing Co.

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Decadent Imperial IPADecadent Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
Ska Brewing Co.
Colorado, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by RockyTopHeel on 12-30-2004

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 826 |  Reviews: 360
Photo of srandycarter
3.73/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark copper, fairly murky, small near white head leaves fast. Lots of sticky lace.

S - Mostly malt. Now, I know the style and I am not grading on the style. I like malt.

T - Same here. Tons of sweet malt, barely enough hop to back it up.

M - Balance not there for a DIPA, carb a little low, light to medium body.

D - For 10%, totally easy to drink!

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Photo of JayQue
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good solid DIPA. Pours a hazy amber with a big slightly off-white head. Good retention and thick lacing.

Good, heavy-duty piney hops smell. Strong bitter IPA taste, piney hops and citrus hops. Not the most complex DIPA out there but worthy of a hophead's thirst.

Mouthfeel is crisp and bitter. No hint of 10% abv. This goes down easy for a lover of bitter hoppy goodness.

Overall a good DIPA.

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Photo of obrike
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice color...dark amber/orange with a decent head that doesn't last...nice streaks of lace that hang on to my 512 pint glass.

Sweet, tangy fruit smell...organges, grapefruit, maybe cantaloupe...a bit of pine. The sweetness is pretty evident.

Taste matches smell...very sweet, but...a bit dank. I like it, but it doesn't hold up to many other DIPAs I've had in the past. Aftertaste throws off a bit of a bitter twang.

Again, the mouthfeel is not as smooth as i would have liked. Medium carbonation...this beer does do a decent job of hiding the 10% booze.

A pretty good offerng from Ska, and at a very decent price for a bomber.

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Photo of wmtxbb
3.27/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into pint glass

Appearance: Dark amber gold with thick lacing.

Smell: thick malt, citrus, and floral hop scent.

Taste: Very strong citrus/grapefruit aftertaste; it's not bad, just - interesting. Moderate bitterness, citrusy bitterness. Alcohol, while present, isn't aggressive. Very earthy in the middle of a tasting.

Overall, a lighter body beer for 10 percent alcohol brew. Not a standout, but still interesting for a DIPA; great for the price ($6).

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Photo of longbongsilver
4.5/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Previously had their (canned) Modus Hoperandi and liked it. Saw this and figured "why not?". Pours a deep amber brown, slight fizz, w/ an inch of cream-colored head. The last slight layer of head sticks around.

First smell is melon-ish, surprisingly. A bit of lemon follows, then the familiar grassy-in-multiple-senses notes. Even a bit of caramel way in the back (mkay, another shock). Enough observation, down the hatch...

All the above comes in, plus what tastes to me like orange, behind straight-up hop-bomb spiciness. Goes down thicker than I expected for the style (I've had CREAM ales that didn't reach this consistency, ffs!). Weirdly, some of the head is still hanging around, which you don't normally see. Meanwhile...10%? Really? I taste half that, I could see this getting chugged if not for all the complexity to savor.

I thought MH was generally a simple yet refreshing IPA. Decadent takes that and boots it to Mars.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes 2/25/11.

A: Pours a hazy orange color with white one finger head. Great retention but only moderate lacing.

S: Bright citrus a good bit of caramel and toffee malt.

T: A little grassy, some citrus and floral hops. A lot of caramel and toffee malts with a bitter finish.

M/D: Medium bodied with good carbonation. You can taste a little of the alcohol and has a bitter finish. Moderate drinkability. Could not find a bottling date, but could be older than desired.

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Photo of rarbring
3.59/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clear deep auburn amber beer, an off-yellow head, rather small, leaving little lacing.

Sweet toffee, candy and brown bread with raisins, lemon and grape-fruit. Pine needles and newly mowed grass.

Initially extremely malty, bread, molasses, brown sugar, rather little sourness, a bit boozy, then a distinct and long-lasting bitterness.

Medium carbonation, small bubbles, soft, alcoholic, a heavy body, a dry finish.

IMHO a bit overdone when it comes to malt and hops. Not well balanced. Worked fairly well with strong (pork) Korma.

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Photo of mryuk
3.8/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a translucent orange with little head.

smell is sweet hops with citrus and piny undertones.

taste is well balanced. starts off sweet with a biter hop finish with a bit of orange in there.

mouth is medium-heavy bodied with good carbonation.

this beer was ok but did not live up to the other ska beers i have had. good given the high level of alcohol though.

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Photo of Bierlerner
2.67/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

S - quite wonderful with a piney and carmel aroma

T - certainly doesn't taste like a IIPA. Very sweet and hops seem somewhat lacking

M - little carbonation and medium body

D - Not impressed and sadly disappointed in this brew as I've had a few of Ska's beers and loved them. Way too sweet for my taste.

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pleasing although not too remarkable a DIPA.

Presentation: 22 oz brown capped and waxed bottle. Wax is a unnecessary and luscious red show-off with a long drop coming down the front label, which has the image of a suited skeleton raising his hat and biting a bouquet of hops over a red bowling themed background. Notes main ingredients and 10% Alc. by Vol. Served in a tulip glass.

S - Citrus, caramel, with a fusel fruity note in the back.

T - Expanded hoppy profile, grapefruit and some resin with a caramel sense. Not too bad a balance but a bit tamed, alcohol comes softy in the end with a touch of turpentine.

M - Medium body, soft carbonation, with a sticky final texture and warmth.

D - Not a bad flow but not too memorable.

Notes: Just on looks alone, the beer sets quite a presence, the bottle that is, then the DIPA inside is good but not one that I would look after.

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Photo of mdcrouser
3.23/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On the verge of spring, but still in the midst of a late winter snowstorm, a big IPA seems like the motivation to think to the upcoming season.

A pretty deep orange-gold , with a half-inch of creamy tan head, receeding to provide a thin layer atop the beer. Looks solid. Beautiful rings.

Citrus, piney, and a piece of sugary bubblegum on the nose. Absolutely pungent.

Huge in the mouth - exploding of pine and citrus, with a lasting bitterness on the tongue, closing with a punch of grapefruit.

Mildly carbonated, peppery on the tongue, alcohol looming in the background.

Very inviting, but somewhat disappointing once on the tongue. Overly hopped, losing any ability to be nuanced or fully flavorful.

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Photo of StlHopHead77
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a deep,hazy,rusty orange with 2 fingers of quickly descending off white foam that resulted in a thin,bubbly film and streaky lacing.

S-Big,jammy fruit(peach,mango) and ripe citrus with assertive sweet malts.Some dull pine and whole grain toast.

T-Tons of malty sweetness upfront.Brown sugar and something reminiscent of ginger snaps.Some orange and tangerine with moderate bitterness.

M-The lack of balance is really felt here.Almost cloying sweetness from the malts meets understated hop bite and more sweet citrus.

D-Just too damn sweet for my tastes!Not horrible by any means but not memorable either.

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Photo of kiddwhiz
3.46/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep copper pour with one finger of white, chunky head. Smells of hops, orange but nothing strong. Tastes of dense hops with orange notes and some hints of lime with a little heat. Not one note but... Overall a good Colorado Imperial IPA but nothing earth shattering. I'd have another.

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Photo of lnashsig
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I love the appearance of this bottle- the wax covering over the bottle cap is really cool. Poured into my Dfh snifter, about 2 fingers of frothy foam stayed around for awhile and then subsided, leaving nice sticky lacing on the glass. Smell- I get some cookie dough sweet flavors, some tropical fruit, but very little citrus. Taste- hop bitterness, followed by a sweet cookie taste, with some fruity flavors on the end. For a 10 percent abv, this is very well masked. Dangerous! I could drink many of these. Mouthfeel- avg. Drinkability- as mentioned previously, I could pound this beer.

Overall, this is a well made dipa, but nothing special. I could however, drink this everyday and be very happy.

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Photo of rrski198
4.03/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Done from brief notes at a beer festival

A: Yellow, gold, amber. White head nice and fluffy. Tons of nice white bubbles.

S: Bitter grapefruit, lemon. Caramel sweetness. Nicely balancedd. I like it.

T: Floral sweet oily and coats the mouth in bitterness. Bitterness kicks and sticks around. Puckers the mouth. Wish i had something else here I can't put my finger on.

M: Good carbonation and oily thickness kicks for awhile.

D: This is not a west coast bop bomb. But, it is a nicely balanced beer with great hop characteristics.

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Photo of mjurney
2.46/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Deep bright amber color, clear. Lots of fine bubbles. Head looks pretty creamy, white color. Lacing looks nice on the glass.

Tea, herbal, a little citrus. I can smell the alcohol.

Herbal hops, leafy, tea-like, a little citrus. A little malt, but its not balancing the beer. Alcohol is very present. Very dry rubbery mouthfeel. Carbonation is light.

Rough finish, very dry, burning alcohol, nasty bitter aftertaste that lingers.

Overall Impressions:
Not a good Double/Imperial IPA. It's awful!!

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.56/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in trade from depechemode1983, thanks for the opportunity. Pours a deep copper color with a with a thinnish off white head that dissipates rather quickly. Smells of pine and citrus with hints of sweet caramel and bready malt and wet dog. Taste is sweet malty with more citrus than pine and hints of higher alcohol. Finishes really dry. At first sip this one leads me to believe that this is going to be a thick sweet bodied beer, but this changes quickly and finishes quite dry with a lingering hop bite. Sweet and resinous mouthfeel, low level of carbonation. Decent, if not a little weird, Imperial IPA. Not the greatest IPA I have ever had but a solid beverage.
On a side note, why are brewers wax dipping bottles of Imperial IPA?

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Photo of HOPPYKC
4.13/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured out from a 22 OZ. bottle in to a pint glass. I dont see a bottled on date or bb date.

The pour in beautiful, a nice orange and amber color out of the bottle with a 1" light tan head. Shows a little bit of carbonation looking through the glass, and is very transparent.

The smell incredible. Its a very strong smell that is sweet and bitter. Has a very floral smell to it and hops hit the tip of the nose right away. This is up on the top of my list for just the smell alone.

Taste is also amazing. My tongue is coated with a bitter onslaught. It brings a nice piney and resiny flavor. Also a bit of fruit maybe grapefruit and lemon. It has a really sweet taste to it which is great to go with the bitterness of the brew. I also like that the alcohol does play a little bit of a role in this beer. Its a cold night with snow on the way so its just enough to keep warm.

The brew goes down easy and warm. You can feel it all the way down to your stomach which is probably the high alcohol content. If this beer was a bit more affordable i could drink this all day long.

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Photo of swhite11
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A] - Light orange with creamy white head; pours 1 1/2 fingers - retains and laces well. Body is very turbid, homebrew like - hop particles abound.

A] - Light malt sweetness followed by large amounts of pine/spruce/citrus fruit. Bready smell finishes.

T] - Dry, tamed alcohol upfront. Malt sweetness follows - slightly cloying. Palate is then met with a spicy/piney/fruity hop profile. Finish is brain numbingly bitter.

M] - Slightly dry upfron followed by cloying sweetness only to be dried out once more by hop bitterness/hot alchohol presence

D] The 10% makes itself known. IBUs cripple the palate. A bomber was a task.

O] - A decent IIPA with a drier finish.

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Photo of katan
3.73/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz into a pint

A - Pours a deep brown color, some almost amber highlights. Very clear, very bubbling and carbonated. Head formation is brigh white, 1/4" and is well retained.

S - Bright citrus and floral hopping, on the sweet side of a hop profile. No malts or yeast notes come through. Very much an IPA nose.

T - Starts off lightly malty, somewhat caramel like. Mid-stream starts to balance out, lots of floral/citrus hops. Some light grassy notes are present. Finishes with a strong bitterness. Aftertaste is a well retained warming alcohol.

M -Moderate body - moderate carbonation. Carbonation doesn't seem to match the appearance or head. Finishes with a cloying sweetness, some alcohol warmth as noted in the taste.

D - For an IIPA, this beer has moderate drinkability. The ABV is just way too high for sessioning. Not that you would normally notice since it hides behind some of the sweetness. Not at all filling - and only a moderate bitterness for wrecking the palette.

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Photo of Sideswipe
2.58/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bomber into a pint glass. Hard pour yields a miniscule head which quickly evaporates. Sticky lacing remains. Cloudy amber color. Smells of caramel and sweet malts slight hop presence. Taste follows the nose. Big caramel notes, awash in hop bitterness and hot boozy alcohol. Tastes like Modus Hoperandi topped with vodka. The booze totally dominates the experience. Mouthfeel is full with low carbonaton. Drinkability is lost to the painfully evident heat of the ABV. I really wanted to like this beer. I love Modus Hoperandi, and it's legacy can be detected here. Unfortunately the awesome balance of it's little brother has been sacrificed on the alter of ABV, and the fault leaves much to be desired.

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Photo of ChugginOil
4.32/5  rDev +20%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

PA- Dark translucent amber in color. A fingers worth of white head

S- Mass hops up front. Bold pine and light citrus notes smell fresh with each scent. No booze can be detected with scent

T- Bold resinous pine throughout. A good balance of hop and malt for the most part. Strong bitter finish that's dry

M- Solid mouthfeel that coats the palate and quenches my hop fiending

D- Finishes smooth and isn't too heavy. I could drink a few of these of I found it on tap. Totally worth the price @ $6.49 a bomber

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Photo of Thorpe429
2.53/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle thanks to drabmuh. Served in a tulip.

Hard pour yields a copper-orange body with a minimal head and no lacing. Some large bubbles form a collar around the edges. Tue nose brings forward a good amount of caramel malt and accompanying sweetness plus a bit of booze. Some citrus and floral hops in the background.

The taste is quite sweet with a really strong booze presence and a lot of heat in the finish. Some bitterness and some floral hops are there as well. Feel is medium and boozy with lowish levels of carbonation. Not a huge fan of this.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.21/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I received three of these in rapid succession through BIFs and trades (extras). Fun, I do love a good IPA. This is more of a malty DIPA rather than a dry hoppy one. Oh well.

Beer is dark copper to light brown and hazy with a thin off white head of small bubbles that leaves very little lacing on the glass. Carbonation is low.

Aroma is super sweet with a late feeling / detection of some serious earthy hops. I now fear a malt bomb.

Kaboom! Malt bomb. Lead off is syrup...sweet...midpalate is dried out by the big sweet forward start, the hops are religated to a serious but by comparison weak bitterness in the late palate. The beer finishes a little dryer than it probably should. Oh well, there are much better DIPAs out there.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
2.96/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to drabmuh for this bottle as an extra...

A: Deep Amber-brownish colored beer with a small off white head and some lacing. In the light you see more orange to yellow hue.

S: A little strange aroma, like some artificial fruity flavors mix with some toffee, with hints of tropical fruit hops in there. A little wierd, and kind of over sweet. I want more hops here.

T: This also is sort of strange. Lots of sugary flavors from the the alcohol heat and the malt, with the hops barely making a showing in the background of the flavor again on the sweet/ tropical fruit kind of side of things. It has almost a Barleywine-ness to it, the sugary malts are so there... I actually sort of like some of the malt aspect(though the sweetness is high) but not nearly enough hops here to balance it out. Should have aged this as a barleywine, would have been better with the alcohol cooled down.

M: A huge alcohol presence, the 10% ain't covered up at all. Pretty good roll over the tongue, nice carbo.

D: Eh, not very drinkable at all, very cloyingly sweet and hot. A word of advice to anyone with this beer, age it and treat it like a barleywine, it tastes and feels like one, and would probably better in years to come as it ages as the hops are an afterthought to the sweetness of the malts.

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Decadent Imperial IPA from Ska Brewing Co.
3.6 out of 5 based on 826 ratings.
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