Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

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English India Pale Ale (IPA)
Ranked #121
Ranked #40,433
3.64 | pDev: 13.19%
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States
Notes: We started brewing this beer as a summer seasonal in 1993. There were some great IPAs out in the Pacific Northwest, but no local IPAs on the east coast. We wanted to have a local IPA, so we brewed one. People absolutely loved it, and so did we. So we made it a year-round beer, and it’s now our bestselling beer and our flagship.

Since its introduction, Harpoon IPA has remained unique in its ability to balance hop bitterness with a strong malt backbone. Dry-hopped with Cascade hops, it has a floral hop aroma and a finish that is bitter (it is an IPA after all!) without being harsh or astringent. Combined with a malty sweetness and the fruity esters of our proprietary yeast, those hops create a beer that is wonderfully hoppy but clean and refreshing enough to enjoy a few of - and we hope you do.

42 IBU
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Reviews: 1,297 | Ratings: 4,299
Photo of IrishRedRock
4.03/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mmmm I have never gone wrong with an IPA and this is no exception. Beautiful fluffy head that stood well over the top of my glass, copper color. Very nice hop flavor, not that strong but you certainly can't miss it. Sticky lace all the way down. Extremely smooth, and an excellent mouthfeel, smooth and buttery. A great IPA.

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Photo of inebrius
4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Quite the easy drinking tap offering. A toasty malt spine holding up a well hopped bitterness, aroma and flavor. One could drink this all night, but the ABV might have something to say about that after a half dozen.

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Photo of marc77
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark golden hue w/ a light ale haze. Pungent dry hopped Cascade hop nose (not unlike fresh Liberty Ale) dominates, but a bit of generic caramel sweetness is there in aroma also. Although hop bitterness dominates, yeast fruitiness & toasty malt are perceptible. Light in body, but crisp and quite drinkable. The hop flavor is expctedly citrus. Finishes clean and bit dry. A bit understated in malt for an AIPA and perhaps one - dimensional, but nonetheless is an enjoyable brew. With a bigger malt backbone this would be excellent. It's reminscent of a thin Anchor Liberty with more hop bitterness.

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Photo of jdhilt
2.3/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A good IPA but not my style, serious hops from start to finish. Clear, good head, heavy hop aroma. Medium body and fairly dry. Strong bitter finish.

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Photo of frank4sail
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly musty hop smell with a hint of citrus. Very light color with a slight amber hue. It has a lasting white head. It is very.. very carbonated. Crisp hop flavor with a nice bitter finish. It is very clean.. almost too clean but is quite drinkable for an IPA due to this fact. The mouth is left very dry after tasting. A very tasty IPA. It is a clean and bitter brew with a dry hop flower finish.. Very sturdy.

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Photo of Brent
4.3/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the best-balanced IPA's, particularly for an American style. Up front, this is moderately sweet with a little resin in the hops. The hops bittering in the finish is lingering at the back of the tongue. Very drinkable, and one of the few IPA's that I would designate as having session potential.

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Photo of BillyBrew
4.21/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My favorite beer for everyday enjoyment! And especially beautiful and tastey on tap. This is everything that Harpoon IPA is with a deep golden colour with a super-creamy, off-white head with tremendous retention. Big rings and full coverage across the top. Nice dry and balanced, slightly biting medium body with covert, but full, malts and complex and striking hops. Drinks great for any occasion or situation. Cheers!

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Photo of tigerpaws
3.8/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very well rounded IPA from one of my fav breweries. But as one earlier post stated after trying others such as Pyramid and Sweetwater for me it had alot to live up to. I would drink this beer again but there are other IPA's much better in my opinion...............CHEERS

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Photo of Bighuge
4.13/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice light copper color with a thin white head that has some decent lacing qualities. Nice pungent, oily aroma. The hop explosion hit the palate first. And it is good. I would say this beer is more hoppy than it is bitter. There is a bitter element present, but more of the hoppy tones seem to make their way to my taste sensors. Flowery and herbal at the same time. A bit oily. Slightly pungent. After cutting through all of the wonderful hop nuances, you will find a decent malt presence. Nicely done IPA here.

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Photo of goindownsouth
3.58/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

All in all, a decent IPA. After having tried Pyramid and Lost Coast though, the bar may be a bit too high. The color was a nice copper and there was a moderate hoppy aroma intertwined with some fruit and spice tinges. The first sip is slightly disappointing, as one tends to expect more bang for the buck. As you get to the middle of the bottle, and towards the end of it, this IPA tends to grow on you a bit. Not the best, but not terrible, by far.

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Photo of mophie
3.83/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had my first one of these tonight. It's a nice beer, and from what I've read, a pretty consistent one, which is a good thing. Just a few shades lighter than amber in color, with a fluffy white head that fades rather quickly. The aroma has me befuddled -- I can hardly smell anything. Allergies, maybe? Taste is more pronounced, though. Almost English in style, the hops are not over-the-top, but they're there. Nice mild citrus and a touch of pine. Smooth malt character provides a pleasant balance, and leads to a smooth, creamy finish. Not a standout necessarily; this is probably one of those beers that grows on you the more you drink it, so I'm looking forward to trying a few more.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.12/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big bubbly white head over golden body. Nice lacing. Big hop aromas, lot of citrus. Much more balanced in taste than nose would indicate. More English than American IPA (except for the aroma). Which makes it more of a session beer for hopheads. Some postings/reviews seem to indicate that it has been dumbed-down, but this is still a fine beer. Glad they still send large quanitites to New Jersey.

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Photo of Murph
4.18/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear bright golden color with a thick, bubbly, white head. Smell is all hops and hop oil. Some slight citrus and very floral qualities. Floral hops explode onto the tongue but are then followed by some nice balancing malt. Brew gets maltier as it warms. Crisp and dry mouthfeel and extremely drinkable. This is definitely one of my major fallback brews when I am home in MA. Recently it has become very easy to get down here in VA, no complaints from me. One of my all time favorite session brews.

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Photo of Thrasher
3.35/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Slightly sour aroma, pours to tempting head, golden color (light for ipa). Good hop character: floral, bitter, stringy. Hops are what make the beer. Light fruity malts are understated, pretty mild character overall despite hop presence. Absolutely fresh, it can be quite good but if its more than a couple weeks old it'll be closer to average.

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Photo of beernut7
4.6/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is the local hopmeister. A deep rich amber color with a medium body and lasting thick head give this beer a good look, nice heavy hop aroma and powerful, yet mellow hop flavor profile. Nice balance of malts with this one create an easy drinking libation.

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Photo of packetknife
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It certainly does assault you on first whiff and taste. Had it last night for the first time and ended up carrying out the box this morning. Not that I was responsible for the whole thing. Hoppy as sin, kinda bready and skanky on the nose. Didn't hold a held but plenty of carbonation.

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Photo of WilliamPhilaPa
3.98/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color is a medium-copper, w/ a small head which dissipates very quickly. Nice floral hoppiness w/ bite on the mouth, excellent finish. I enjoyed this very much, a true English styled IPA!

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Photo of Bierman9
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium-golden color, with a small, short-lasting head. Medium body, and medium on the tongue. Nice floral hoppiness in both the nose and in its flavor. Not as pronounced as some, but still tasty.

overall: 4
appearance: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | mouthfeel: 4 | drinkability: 4


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Photo of bcm119
4.07/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good American IPA, although its not the hoppiest thing on earth. Gently bitter, clean and dry; floral and a little minerally, with a tasty raw grain flavor that lingers in the finish.

Updated to increase taste and drinkability, after a trip to Boston where I had this fresh at the brewery. This is much better when fresh and overall one of my favorite east coast session IPA's. Very well balanced, bright flavors and really quaffable.

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Photo of xXTequila
4.9/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This has to be one of my favorite ipa's.
You can smell the hops while you pour.
Golden Orange with a big thick head. Great lace.
At first a salty green rind flavour followed by a rush of citrus and sweet malt.

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Photo of John
3/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer was really something at the onset of the craft brew movement and it's likely converted many a yellow beer drinker. It's still very good beer. However, with the evolution of American IPAs, this one comes up a little short. Maybe that's an unfair comparison since this probably is closer to an English style IPA. Even so, it's a little weak.

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

A pretty decent, all around good IPA. Plenty of hops and malt to match, with a nice alcohol kick. Unfortunately it's seems to be changing year after year, getting dumbed down for the masses and is nothing like the original Tod Mott recipe. Still, a solid favourite of mine and a nice backup beer.

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IPA from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Beer rating: 82 out of 100 with 4299 ratings