Harpoon Leviathan - Red Squared | Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

very good
21 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Harpoon Leviathan - Red SquaredHarpoon Leviathan - Red Squared

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is not your traditional red ale. Leviathan Red Squared is aggressively hopped with Galaxy and Citra over a California ale yeast. The end result is an intense hop experience, with ?oral and citric notes, paired with a mellow malt bill. Some would call it imperial.
We prefer Red, Squared.

75 IBU

Added by Arithmeticus on 07-28-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 21 | Ratings: 57
Photo of JebBeerFish
2.84/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pronounced hops dominating malts. Beer is 2012 vintage, and likely some flavors have diminished.. Can't really say that I enjoyed it, but I finished it. I don't drink enough American Ambers/Red Ales to judge it per the style.

 225 characters

Photo of rorjets
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Took a late afternoon hike in the snow, and wanted something with a warming bite to it upon my return. This offering from Harpoon, which I pulled out of my beer cellar, fit the bill nicely. With it's 9% abv it has a kick, and it also has a nice balance between the sweetness of the malt and the bitterness of the galaxy and citra hops. Absolutely Deeelicious on a snowy day!

 374 characters

Photo of dogfishandi
3.78/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a tulip. "2012" vintage (over 1 year old)

Pours out a deep dark orange bronze color, pretty good clarity, big dense off white colored head with very good retention and thick lacing covering most of the exposed glass.

Big malty aroma, slightly oxidized which is to be expected with age. Burnt, charred caramel malts, faded woody hops, and a bit of pine.

More malty than hoppy in the taste, but not by much, a decent balance. Lots of caramel malts, slightly burnt, a bit of a rye malt spice, woody, piney, resinous hops with some hop bitterness in the finish.

Carbonation is a bit on the lighter side. Medium to slightly heavy in body. Slightly sticky feel.

This was better than expected, I imagined the age of this beer would've have been its downfall. That being said I'm sure this was something pretty special when it was fresh.

 876 characters

Photo of kawilliams81
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a. 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours dark amber with a 1 finger beige head. Leopard spotting and trails of lacing.

Caramel, candi sugar, citrus, rye, pine

Caramel, toasted malts, citrus, candy apple, spice from rye, pine bitterness

Good imperial red. Drinkable not overly dry or bitter.

 303 characters

Photo of Seanniek91
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served from a 12oz bottle into a Smuttynose pint.

Appearance- Typical looking red. Cloudy/murky brownish/copper color with very thin white head. Decent lacing.

Smell- Tart cherry, caramel malts, piney hops, floral notes. Hop-forward red ale.

Taste- Malty first, then piney hops, then fruity (apple/pear?) hop flavors, goes out malty, then finishes with bitter hops. No booze.

Mouthfeel- Pretty carbonated. Smooth on the way down. No heat from the 9.20% though.

Overall- Imperial reds are more often then not, booze bombs. This is a nice refreshing hoppy red in the same vein as Hop Head Red from Green Flash.

 613 characters

Photo of scottbrew4u
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours from a 12 oz bottle a brilliant, clear, amber color with a one finger, light tan head. Good lacing on the sides of the glass on this beer.
S: Rich caramel, and roasted crystal malt aromas with a toffee sweetness. Hops are fresh pine and peppercorn and tobacco.
T: Pine and zest of orange with a peppery spice hit first then a smooth caramel and toffee sweetness. The balance is good with malt richness and hop intensity.
M: Medium body with bubbly carbonation and some alcohol warmth.
O: Very good balance for a hoppy amber ale and very fresh tasting hops make this one impressive and very drinkable. A two thumbs up for this Harpoon ale! Hope they release this again.

 680 characters

Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Hoyt for sharing this bottle.

A - dark amber with a big, off white, frothy head that has great retention

S - citrus, caramel, a bit toasty, piny; this is a very hoppy aroma

T - citrusy, piny hops up front followed by some caramel and bread malty notes

M - medium bodied, well carbonated

This is a very, very nice amber ale. There's no debating that this is an "aggressively hopped" ale. Everything about this beer for me is delicious. I'm impressed. Definitely worth a try.

 488 characters

Photo of OneDropSoup
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a shaker pint: Two fingers of rocky head that retains well & laces sticky lacing over transparent, deep copper body with some light gold highlights.

Smells of deeply, bitterly citric hops, mostly orange & grapefruit, a slightly woody character, & some nicely toasty, caramel malt in the supporting role. Hops are forward but nicely rounded by the malt.

Taste follows with the smell, with a citrus character at the forefront, soon followed by a lightly bready, pie crust flavor that goes really nicely with the bright, hoppy bitterness. There's even a pithy kind of bite in the middle that wrestles pleasantly with the fruity & baked sweetness. A little alcoholic dryness emerges, warming & bearing up the flavors, giving some depth. Really well done.

Medium-full-bodied, hits bitter, then sweet, then dry, then a little warm bordering on hot. The combination of resin & sugar leaves a pleasant stickiness in the aftertaste.

Maybe this is just a case of "right-place-right-time", but this hit just the right spot: hoppy & bright, but really anchored by an assertive malt profile. Gotta give more time to some reds & ambers, I really enjoyed this.

 1,162 characters

Photo of Danno48
4.17/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great, big, hoppy red ale.
Pours a bright red with a very nice n thick head.

Smells very floral and piney... More or less smells just like an IPA.

Taste is awesome. Great floral piney notes that aren't too bitter. The malt is much less pronounced.

Very light for an imperial. Does not cling.

I would say it is more of an IPA than a red ale from the flavor profile but it is great.

 384 characters

Photo of Thickfreakness
3.83/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a deep mahogany cherry stain color. Fluffy orange/tan head that retains for a bit, and then leaves a ton of sticky, chewy lacing as it fades away. Very nice clarity.

S- Grapefruit, orange pith, subtle touches of caramel and honey, freshly dropped pine needles, pineapple and mango. Not as strong as I was hoping for. The nose is a little bit subdued, but what is there... is really nicely balanced.

T- Bitter citrus peel and pith, pine sap, pineapple juice, orange blossom honey. Really bitter right off the bat, but it sweetens up a bit after the swallow.

M- Not tongue strippingly bitter, but it's a bit like eating orange peel. Nice citrus/pine/sweet balance.

O- Nicely done if you're in the mood for a super citrus/bitter brew. Not as much depth as I was hoping for. No real sence of the alcohol. I found myself wishing it had a little more caramel and honey sweetness than piney citrus. Either way, I'll probably grab this again while it's around.

 969 characters

Photo of oberon
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass a clear deep amber with a 1/2 finger slightly off white head atop.Citric and resiny hops dominate the nose with a big sweet caramel malt base to balance it out.A big sharp citric hop blast at first sip with alot of sweet alcohol,it's sharp and resiny with alot of alcohol.It's everything you like in a big hopped up red big resiny/citric hops and caramel-alcohol to stand up to it.Awesome.

 423 characters

Photo of Greenlabel
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first bottle from a 4-pack purchased at Julio's. Aroma a bit weak but seemed to be primarily citrus and hops. Very attractive mahogany pour - looks like what I'd expect from a red ale. Long lasting white head. Hops dominate the taste with caramel in the background - more hoppy than expected but all to the good. The relatively high ABV was almost unnoticeable in the mouthfeel.

Overall, a very enjoyable product that i hope will be more than a one-time product. I'm glad to have 3 more to enjoy from this purchase.

 519 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed once and I guess I am one of the few to try it.

A - As expected for an Imperial red it's a very dark shade of red/brown with a 1/2 inch of opaque colored head. Sticky lacing is decent.

S - Well I didn't pick up anything more than a predominant caramel and biscuit malt and also a sharp level of Citrus hops. Then again I didn't expect any more.

T - I am really impressed with this like other "imperial" beverages it just seems they add more hops and you get a dominant level of citrus like bitterness. In this beverage the caramel and biscuit malts seem to clash perfectly with this making it a complex blend of the two. Simply it was good.

M - Light to medium for me it in no way showed any harsh alcohol tones or traces of the high ABV.

Overall I would love to have this again but can't for two reasons one being it's brewed only once and the second it packed a steep 4 dollar single price tag. Still a great beer though.

 935 characters

Photo of jzeilinger
4.32/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber in color with a frothy head and very sticky lacing.

Aroma is really interesting with a dank, spicy passionate fruit, and slightly grassy and earthy citrus mixing with a toasted malt. Interesting aroma for an Imperial Red Ale (in a good way), possibly because of the Galaxy hop and malt combo?

The toasted caramel malt struggles to surface but continually gets buried by citrus, light orange, passionate fruit, spice, earthy, and a bitter citrus finish with some floral character.

Heavy medium body and a little oily.

This is one of the more interesting reds I've had so far, the most addicting part of this beer is the unique spicy pungent aroma. This is not your typical red ale and if you're a hop fan I would say this is worth seeking out because it defies red/imperial red ale preconceptions.

 813 characters

Photo of Altrurian
3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A vigorous pour produces a healthy, high head, almost tan, that recedes slowly with light but definite lacing. The beer is a transparent, rich mahogany brown with ruby notes.

The aroma is a slightly challenging, but not at all off-putting, combination of wood and leather, with hints of high-quality shoe polish without the aromatics. It's a manly smell. You know it's the hops, but there's something about the presentation--even the bottle's label--that conveys a seriousness of purpose beyond mere compositional straightforwardness.

The taste is that of a hoppy ale that's satisfyingly complex, but completely without sweetness, or, in my estimation, even discernable citrus characteristics (though others differ).

A fine beer. Exceptionally drinkable and enjoyable at an elemental level, especially if the 9.0 ABV is accurate.

 832 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.77/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 8/21/2012 at Cloverleaf Tavern in Caldwell, NJ, served in a goblet glass.

A: The beer is a dark reddish brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, citrus and floral hops.

T: The taste starts out with a sweet burst of caramel and citrus that is quickly followed by a strong grassy hops bitterness. The malt character is hearty and brings a little balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, decent representation of style, it’s a decent beer but there are definitely a lot hoppy red ales out there that are better.

 797 characters

Photo of jondeelee
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Red Squared opens full-throated and hoppy, with bright shocks of grapefruit rind, pine resin, lemon, mint, and dandelion stem bursting onto the nose, followed quickly by a sugary, sticky undercurrent of pink grapefruit, candi sugar, brown sugar, and a lovely, thick waft of fruit esters that includes orange liqueur, nectarine, apricot, berry, and cherry. A thin rind of toast crust and brown bread surrounds everything, helping to somewhat bring down the sugary, bitter rush. As a whole, the nose is compelling and intriguing, the beer obviously focusing heavily on sugars and hops, but while these aromas easily overwhelm the brew, they are in and of themselves nicely balanced and finely nuanced, presenting a wide range of aromas and possibilities.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a bitter hop blast, pine resin and dandelion stem bursting forth in exaltation, followed by only slightly lesser trumpet blasts of eucalyptus, grapefruit rind, mint, and lemon zest. So powerful are the hops that other flavors are initially difficult to detect, making this beer appear at first to be a double IPA (the 75 IBUs adding to this impression). In subsequent sips a good sugary base slowly appears, bringing cherry, berry, orange, and nectarine fruit esters, as well as a thick swath of candi and brown sugars. Faint hints of toast crust and biscuit, as well as wet wheat, provide some counterbalance. However, as the beer is held in the mouth and the sugars die off, the hops once again resume their assault on the tastebuds, easily becoming just about the only noticeable flavor, and overwhelming the aftertaste in their bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium to medium-high, adding to the burning sensation on the tongue and soft palate.

Overall, this beer does present an awesome range of hop flavors, and hopheads will rejoice at what is another well-rounded and finely nuanced hop-forward beer. However, the hops eventually prove to be so strong that they drown out the rest of the flavors, making the beer seem ultimately off-balanced and in need of a bit more tempering.

 2,097 characters

Photo of Digimaika2
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(4.5) A: Beautiful mahogany red/burnt brown with a tall creamy tan coloured head. Very good retention and outstanding lacing.

(4.5) S: Fresh grapefruit, ripe plum, caramel, toffee, and faint darker fruits. Very appealing damp/earthy/woody aroma emitted. Alcohol very well hidden. Everything is very well balanced providing a bold and full aroma that is simply fantastic.

(4.5) T: Subdued caramel, tangy citrus, floral qualities, honey, and toffee. A general earthiness surrounds the taste. Alcohol is noticeable but hidden behind the sugars well. Leaves your mouth wanting more, and more, and more. Very good.

(4.5) M: Full bodied with a lower carbonation. Rich and creamy. Velvety texture on the tongue but yet resin-like with a certain chewy quality thereafter. This mouthfeel is one of the best I’ve experienced.

(4.5) D: Very impressed with this offering and my favourite of the Leviathan series so far. Well-hopped with a mellow malt backbone that is executed superbly.

 983 characters

Photo of shand
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

Harpoon's been doing great things in the Leviathan series, and hoppy reds are one of my favourites, so I've got high hopes for this one. The pour is beautiful, it pours out a vibrant orange-red with a persistent head. The aroma is a juicy assortment of hops. Tons of citrus. The taste is a rush of citrus and floral hops, backed up by a solid, yet clean malt base. Lots of grapefruit. The mouthfeel is lightly carbonated and slick, and the drinkability is very good. This is easily the best beer I've had from Harpoon, and holds up very well against favorites like Lagunitas Imperial Red and CCB Tocobaga Red. Highly recommended.

 687 characters

Photo of inandon
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer pours a dark amber color. The aroma is great. It smells like a pale ale with a hint of hops. I agree with the other reviewer that it has some caramel smell to it as well.

The taste is on point. It is a slightly hoppy but not over powering.
I like that is it is not fruity or sweet.

It is light feeling (not like a summer beer though)
i would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a medium body, amber beer with just a lil bite to it.

 441 characters

Photo of Arithmeticus
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 12-oz room temp bottle in stages in 4-oz glass

A: slightly orange brown (dark); not much head, not much carb; clear
S: caramel malty; boozy; some hops come through
T: very dense, flavorful; bitter, not sweet; aggressive hop profile; comes very close to a scotch ale in its intensity

Great part of the Leviathan series

 334 characters

Harpoon Leviathan - Red Squared from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
4.1 out of 5 based on 57 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.