Short's Controversi-ALE | Short's Brewing Company

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very good
204 Reviews
Short's Controversi-ALEShort's Controversi-ALE

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Loaded with hops like an IPA, yet drinks like a Pale Ale, we simply decided to call it a Strong Pale Ale. The fragrant, earthy citrus laced nose is instantly detectable. Large amounts of toasted grains and high alpha Simcoe hops form a perfect union that creates the cool sensation of toasted sourdough covered with zesty grapefruit hop marmalade.

67 IBU

Formerly known as Hangin' Frank.

Added by oberon on 09-09-2007

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Reviews: 204 | Ratings: 597
Photo of flexabull
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First of bunch of Shorts beers courtesy of mikesgroove, thanks again!

Pours a slightly hazy orange color with a nice white head, and decent lacing.

Aromas are of grapefruits, some lemon zest, and hard candies. Smells like a pretty fine IPA.

Taste is very citrus like, and fruit forward. Light mineral bitterness, grapefruit, and tart lemon flavors dominate. Slight backdrop of creamy malts and sugary swetness. Finish is very crisp and dry, with some bitter orange notes.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, good carbonation, but a touch to thin.

Drinkability is good. This is a very interesting and kind of unique IPA, the bitter citrus is quite pronounced, reminds me a little like Two Hearted. When I first starting sipping it, the weaker mouthfeel distracted a bit, but as the warmed, the complex flavors started to take over, and this beer opened up. Prety solid overall, and worth trying. I wouldn't go out on a huge quest to find this though, it's far from being epic...

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a nice amber color with a bit of haze and a white head. Nose brings some really nice citrus and floral hops. Strong notes coming through throughout, getting better as it warms. The taste brings a bit of sweet malt without as many hops as were in the nose. Good feel with a moderate amount of bitterness. Drinks well and I was glad to try one of the "normal" offerings from Short's, as it had been awhile since I'd visited with their APA and the like.

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Photo of SpdKilz
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yet another great Short's brew I get to try courtesy of erikkoppin. Cheers!

Appearance - Pours into my SA Perfect Pint with a slightly hazy, orange color. Over three fingers of head is achieved with a moderate pour that dissipate at a slow pace, leaving chunky lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell - An abundance of floral and sweet citrus notes emanate from the glass. Pine, hops, and slight caramel malts.

Taste - Seriously, does Short's have to do everything differently? I was hoping the taste would be similar to the nose, because honestly I have not really experienced heavy floral IPA's mixed with heavy tropical citrus IPAS...yet here Short's goes and does just this. A very unique combination of said flavors that are immediately present with the initial sip. This gives way to minor hoppy bitterness and pine, and ends with just a hint of sweet malt but not overly sweet (making this just perfect IMO).

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, prickly carbonation, ends a hint dry.

Drinkability - Amazing. I don't know what the ABV is but seeing as it is labeled an IPA I'd say 5-7%...and man is this quaffable. Living in a state that has so many damn good D/IPA's, it takes a special one to have me make a note of it. I enjoyed this more than Huma-Lupa-Licious to be honest. The extremely interesting melding of the floral and tropical citrus notes just made this beer stand out. After reading about this months ago because of the rather graphic label, I am glad I was able to try it and even happier to have enjoyed it.

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Photo of dfillius
4.69/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass
A: Aggressive pour yields 1/4 finger white head with poor retention. More head with better retention please. Hazy amber liquid is perfect for the style.

S: Mango, tropical fruit, guava, orange, Man candy, WOW! Slight biscuit in the aroma. Smells almost like Mango Mama.

T: Delightful. Amazing aroma comes through in the taste. Bitter grapefruit with nice tropical fruit lattice work. Piney hop flavor dominates later on. Almost a palate wrecker. I like it a lot.

M: Smoothness slides into bitterness. Very 2 dimensional. Nice to feel that.

D: I'd love to have another, and I'd buy a six-pack definitely. Very good, and darn near perfect blend of a hop bomb and a session beer

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Photo of klikger
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle (thanks, steebo777!) poured into a Goose Island IPA tulip

A - Rich amber, not much head, good lacing

S - Grapefruit, floral hops

T - Combo of a lot of bitter hops; so floral it tastes like perfume at points. Maybe it's my subconscious, but there's some definite hot dog flavoring in here, too. Mild, understated malty elements heed way to the hop bouquet throughout. Very good, really unusual IPA.

M - A little meaty, adequate carb

D - Bitter, flavorful, and different - I'd session this for sure.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.3/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

so i decided last night to break out 10, thats right 10 new shorts beers for a nice sampling with the family. turns out my and my brother in law were the only ones willing to go down this road, so long afternoon for sure. serve cold and consumed on 10/02/2010.

really nice done beer here for sure. this one came across very nicely from the start with a rich and delicate profile that threw a few for a loop for sure. dark in color for the style with a nice and tight head of lacing that stayed on top throughout the session.

aroma is a mixed bag at first but wins me over in the end/ nice tight citrus hops are mixed with a dark malt base that at first takes you a bit off guard but comes around to win you over after a few more tastes. light and sharp the orange flavor really picked up half way through my glass. very well balanced with a smooth and unique taste that i really did not see coming. nice and clean finish left citrus and a rich sweet malt taste in my mouth with a nice dry finish.

overall one of the better offerings i had yesterday. solid.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.44/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Thanks go to splax23 for a couple of these in trade.

Pours a lightly hazy copper, with roughly 3 rich fingers of slightly off-white colored head. The retention on this is awesome looking, with a hugely rich and creamy frothiness to it that just DRENCHES the sides of the glass with thick sticky lacing. Great look here! The aroma is pronounced medicinal band-aid smell to it that unfortunately really dominates this. I mean you still can pick up the rest of the IPA character here, with floral accents, some sweeter fruit, and honeyed grains underneath but those off-notes really take the nose out of the game here.

Fortunately, whatever was plaguing the aroma doesn't seem so bad here. Unfortunately, the flavors themselves just seem kind of soft and not up to the task at times as well. This is bitter to a point with grapefruit character but is lessened by some easy feeling herbal textures and a sugary blend of tropical notes and toasted bready sweetness. The finish lingers on the tongue with some green earth and spice. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, wit a mellow creaminess that melds well with some oily slickness. This almost feels a little too light and easy in the mouth. Bonus points though for absolutely no alcohol being felt in the body.

The off-notes in the aroma were definitely a bummer but even without that, I just didn't buy this as an American IPA. With its low-key hop profile and easy feeling body, this came off to me anyway, as more along the lines of a mostly quaffable APA instead. Either way, I was a bit disappointed in this offering.

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Photo of TCHopCraver
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes on 8/30/10.

A: A hard pour into a deep snifter resulted in a one finger, off-white head that burned off quickly. A very autumn-esque orange-amber-gold color looks gorgeous and enticing. The lacing looks like sparkly fireworks that dance in the night sky. It is rather sticky, also.

S: A very sweet citrus aroma of tangerines and blood oranges is the dominant smell. A nice earthy hop bitterness complements the sweet citrus aroma, and I also smell a dry biscuit aroma from the yeast. In addition, there is a solid caramel malt backbone to support the citrus earthy hops. HF is quite fresh to the nose.

T: After really liking the appearance and smell, I am just a little disappointed by the taste. All of the aroma that I picked up in the smell are gracing my palate, but they are not quite as pronounced as I hoped they might be. The earthy hop quality overbalances the sweet citrus hop presence that I so enjoyed in the smell. If those roles were reversed, I would rate this a little higher. Also, the beer is just a little watery, which detracts from the flavor a bit.

M: There is an excellent gentle nibbling on my tongue and the sides of my mouth from the bittering hops, but the overall feel is light and a little thin on my palate.

D: This is a tasty and easy drinking IPA. I could enjoy several of these in a sitting and will look forward to having more in the future.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
3.33/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with a cartoon of a guy hanging, must be Frank. Not sure about the backstory on that.

The beer pours a light orange color, a little haze, thin head. The aroma is a little malt-forward for an IPA, toasty biscuit malt mixed with hops of the citrus variety, very balanced. It tastes much the same to me, a very balanced IPA with a slightly bitter aftertaste. The hops give some light citrus flavors, and the malts do a little more than just support, overall it works well. Might be an APA but that's splitting hairs.

The body is about average for an APA/IPA, easy drinking. OK but not exceptional, as is becoming the case with most Shorts beers I've tried recently.

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Photo of jmich24
4.27/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One month old:
A: Slightly hazy Dark golden in color with orange hues. Small head. Nice stick lacing
S: Hops! Danky weed, citrus, oranges. Some sweetness from malts.
T: Sweet and bitter. Citrus and oranges again with some tropical fruits. Finishes bitter but not overly bitter.
M: Smooth somewhat creamy finished nice and dry. Not overwhelmingly bitter.
D: This is super drinkable for an IPA. The slight sweetness paired with the not so over the top bitterness is "tame".

Great hop fix at only 5.5 % ABV.

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Photo of nkersten
3.27/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a tuplip. Thanks Erik!

Color is a very hazy orange with minimal white head. The little head there is sticks nicely to the side of the glass. Smell is hop forward, very citrusy with some fresh dough. Taste is strange. Not at all like the smell - not a lot of bitterness or hop flavor and very little malt. Some biscuit/dough, but not much going on. Mouthfeel is very thin and watery with a prickly carbonation. If this beer had some hop flavor it would be much more drinkable. I don't mind the thin mouthfeel as long as there is some flavor there. I am glad I got to try this but definitley prefer Huma Lupa.

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Photo of glazeman
2.93/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter

A: This beer pours golden in color with a touch of amber and a one finger white head that has excellent retention and nice lacing.

S: Very intense citrus hops on the nose. I specifically get lemons, grapefruit, and a little bit of brown sugar.

T: Uggh. I had such high expectation for the taste after my initially whiffs of this beer, but unfortunately this one does not deliver. This one is pretty watered down and bland for an IPA in my opinion. It's like they had the right idea but skimped on the volume of the ingredients or something...I don't know. I get come orange and lemon and then a little bit of bitterness at the end, but not nearly enough.

M: Run of the mill mouthfeel. No complaints, but nothing special.

D: The more Short's beers I have the more that I feel they are hit or miss. I have had some of my very favorite beers of all time and least favorite beers come from Short's. Sad to say, this IPA falls into the later category. Not really worth the effort to search this one out. Though, it is easy to drink, but then again so is water.

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Photo of bunnyhustle
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a little hazy and copper in color with somewhat small head. Ok retention and minimal lacing. Smell has a slightly citrusy hop kick to with some light caramel malt, pretty bitter I would say. Taste I found slightly dull. While the smell reminded me very much of a West Coast the taste was not. I found the taste to be very balanced and slightly citrusy, just not at hoppy as I would have hoped. I found it just a little (emphasize little) bland. Mouthfeel was fine, smooth and medium bodied. Overall a good beer. I think this was my first from Shorts but I'm sure they have better ones out there.

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Photo of enfield249
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear gold, with some orange highlights, Very little foam. Smells of smells of floral hops. The taste is a very nice floral hop flavor with some slight citrus. Full but not overly so mouth feel. A very drink able IPA that is towards the top of IPAs I have had.

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Photo of thetomG
3.65/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brownish amber color. Decent foamy head with some very nice sticky lacing left behind.

Aroma has a mild sweet & slightly fruity note to it. Flavor is largely just a big blast of bitterness from the hops.

Carbonation seems right one, but the powerful bitterness take away a bit form the mouthfeel and overall drinkability.

Glad I tried it, but not likely to seek this one out again.

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Photo of maximum12
4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to malty for dropping a few of these into the case of mixed Short's that's blessed my fridge for the past couple of weeks.

Well, certainly the most morbid art to grace a bottle that I've seen. Pour is on the Florida orange side of an IPA. Smell is sweet Georgia Brown mixed with a bitter blast of citrus. Niiice.

Hangin Frank brings the bitterness with a vengeance. The malts try to hold back the avalanche with minimal success. The hops are all about the citrus, the pineapple, the weird stuff they put in your drinks when you're in the Caribbean that you don't know about but stick purple umbrellas because that's what they think Americans want. Beneath is a stolid, green-eyeshade foundation of malts that showers complements on the hops in all their varietal of glory. Hops & malts. That's all.

Horribly drinkable. I'd imagine this is in the 6% range, but who knows? The combo of the Islands hops & sweet, sweet malts makes this a pogo stick to drunken revelry.

Excellent IPA. Not the bitter hop nuclear blast that I normally enjoy, but the chill, cool taste of the hops makes this one to savor. Glad I have a couple more.

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Photo of kzoobrew
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Orangey amber body with a slight haze. Creamy antique white head sits atop measuring 2 fingers. Great retention, head does not seem to budge remaining until the last sip. Thick layer of lacing left encompassing the glass.

Hop aroma strong, meshing fresh citrus and pine aromas. Citric aromas are a bit more dominate though overall hop aroma well balanced. Slight pale malt aroma under provides a subtle backbone.

Hangin Frank is a hop forward beer without an overpowering bitterness. Sweet citrus hops would be overpowering on their own are balanced with a pine bite. Subdued malty sweetness underlying. Grain bill seems pretty simple and straight forward allowing the hops to shine.

Medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Long lasting hop flavor makes for a bit of a long finish. Smooth and creamy texture.

Very impressed with this beer. Hangin Frank is an IPA that drinks more like an APA. Very solid in every category. Between HumaLupa and The Liberator, Joe Short really seems to like the piny hops, glad to see an IPA with some citrus. Recommended

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Photo of BMoney575
2.97/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled on 8-29-10

Pours a hazy orange/amber color, with a very thin white head that leaves one ring of lacing.

Smell is thick hop resin, extremely floral and sticky. Nicely complex, with a strong bitterness and sweet underlying malt character.

Taste is bitter, earthy, and vegetabley. The flavors are deep, dirty, and almost unpleasant. No hop flavor or sweetness, and not much in the way of malt balance. The aftertaste is sharp and very bitter, and lingers forever.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side, and the strong carbonation does not help.

Drinkability is poor, due to the harsh flavors and huge bitterness.

Overall, not very good, and no redeeming qualities.

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Photo of hosehead83
4.79/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass
Tawny, burnt-orange in color, with a fluffy, eggshell-white head of foam
Aroma-Heavenly aromatic nosefull of citrussy, piney hops, and tropical fruit.
Taste-Big burst of piney hops, followed by sweet orange and red grapefruit. Very snappy, fresh, and flavorful. Well-balanced and very drinkable. Love this beer! Right up my alley. A great match for a spicy taco dip or a plate of enchiladas.
Get some!!

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Photo of TCgoalie
4.14/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another Short's offering found in bottles, I have to try it.

The pour is relatively unimpressive. No head, a few bubbles screaming to the surface, an amber-copper color...that is all.

Smelling this makes me more excited to try it. Pineapple and peach collide against a subtle malt profile. I also detect a very small pine scent, but the mellow fruit is more noticeable.

The malt profile is bigger in the taste than its counterpart Huma Lupa. There is also not as much of a bitter aftertaste in this. The majority of the hop bitterness is pine with some pineapple additions. A very solid drink.

The mouthfeel is solid with a medium feel and also has a soft slightly creaminess.

This is a solid drinkable IPA worthy of having multiples.

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Photo of kbutler1
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft. Stopped in the brewery and had a little sampler of several beers. Light amber color with a slight white head. Nice hop aroma with citrus. The taste has the classic citrus rind taste along with a slight touch of spice. Earthy. Medium mouthfeel. Not bad but jsut not really a stand out in my opinion.

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Photo of alexgash
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle.

Clear golden orange body. Pinkie finger of dense, persistent, light beige head. Nice sticky lacing on the sides. Juicy nose of citrus hops: Mandarin orange and grapefruit. Some fruity, toasted malts as well. Maybe a whiff of pine too. All in all, smells like a very fresh IPA.

Funky, resinous hop flavor and bitterness right up front. Toasted malt gives way to fruitier, slightly sweet notes mid-palate. Resinous hop flavor also becomes more citrusy and juicy toward the finish. Orange rind and some biscuit malt in the finish. Lasting bitterness. Moderate body with a slightly oily feel. A nice, straight-forward, well-made IPA, but I think I still like Huma more...

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Photo of WeisGuy
3.61/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

a - pours a slightly hazy, burnt orange color, 1.5 inch white head with good retention and lacing

s - big biscuit malt aroma with only a light orange citrus hop presence, toastes rye bread notes though I don't think there's any rye in this

t - the bottle claims this is an IPA, but this is much more malt forward than any American IPA I've had, like that aroma, the main flavor is strong, clean biscuit malt, there is a lighter citrus hop character on the midpalate and finish, mostly orange and lemon notes, the finish is pretty dry and moderately bitter with lingering biscuit and rye bread flavors, alcohol is well-hidden

m - a bit too light-bodied, moderate carbonation, fairly dry finish, alcohol warming is negligible

d - pretty drinkable stuff, it drinks much more like an American Pale Ale with its malt forward taste profile and light bitterness, the flavors are nice, but the muted hops take away from the complexity in a beer billed as an IPA

Pretty good beer from Short's - I'm just puzzled why they call it an IPA. I'm not really detracting from my rating based on this, but it just tastes nothing like an IPA to me. That said, it's definitely worth trying if you see it on the shelf here in Michigan.

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Photo of techfed87
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nicely sized head. Color is a clear amber. Smell is very hoppy.

First sip confirms my analysis that this is indeed quite the nice IPA. It's full of hop character without being overly bitter. It's floury and dry and very satisfying. Mouthfeel is full, and lasts a good amount of time.

Having been to City Park Grill several times and had Hangin' Frank on tap on several occasions, I'd have to say that this is just as good.

Try it sometime!

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Photo of malty
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Freshly released 12 oz. bottle. No date stamp, but I know it's fresh because it just hit the shelves this week.

Poured into my Great Lakes Brewing nonic pint glass almost brilliantly clear russet color with a ever-so off-white fluffy 1/2" settled head. A little bit of visible uprising carbonation. Gorgeous rings of (almost) unbroken lace all the way down.

Mmmm...fresh tropical fruit scented hops with a semi-sweet biscuit malt backdrop. Now the hops smell a bit earthy, but not musty. The soft sweet malt is very comforting.

I don't know why this says 'India Pale Ale' on the front label because it sure does taste like a nice, even-tempered good ole' American Pale Ale to me. The bitterness in the hops is subdued by the quiet and gentle malt platform in which the hops rise and decline one sip after another. There's a soft mineral flavor that's a tad savory, but hard to describe, (sorry).

Mouthfeel is superb. Soft, airy and perfectly carbonated. The slightly bittersweet finish fades gracefully after 10 seconds or so.

Drinkability is great. Nothing off-putting or abrasive about this ale.

Overall a masterfully crafted Pale Ale that serves as a much needed break from all the crazy and unique brews Short's has been gracing us with for almost a year now. Thanks God their bottling line shows no signs of stopping!

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Short's Controversi-ALE from Short's Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 204 ratings.
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