Thursday, May 2, 2013

Rooster Fish Hop Warrior Imperial IPA

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Chad9976 (869) - Albany, New York, USA - MAY 2, 2013
I poured a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass. It was bottled on 4/13/13 making it less than three weeks old. It cost $5 ($0.23 per ounce).

Appearance: Extremely hazy but translucent shade of burnt umber/dark orange/cherry red. Forms a small, off-white, foamy head which leaves some lacing and never completely evaporates.

Smell: Extremely earthy aroma of tree bark, pine cones and grass but also a subtle fruit juice concentrate scent as well.

Taste: I hate to criticize an up-and-coming brewery since we beer nerds are supposed to support the little guys, but if a beer is not good I’m not going to lie about it. And while Rooster Fish Hop Warrior Imperial IPA is far from abysmal, the fact remains it’s just not a good beer.

The reason this beer fails for me is twofold: a complete lack of hops; and a base malt flavor of burnt peanut brittle. Though it’s quite hoppy to the nose, there’s little actual bitterness to be found here. This is especially disappointing considering the label indicates an IBU rating of "100+". There’s a mild sweetness throughout the first half of the palette. It’s a general earthy flavor but without anything particularly distinctive. The finish imparts an off taste akin to licking a pine cone. Sure, some hops can have a piney taste to them, but this doesn’t seem right. The aftertaste is akin to burnt sugar, or maybe even sorghum. I don’t really know what this beer is supposed to be, but basing an entire DIPA around the Warrior hop doesn’t seem to work.

Drinkability: Though I didn’t much care for the taste, I have to admit Rooster Fish Hop Warrior Imperial IPA was surprisingly drinkable at first. The body seems to be undercarbonated, creating for a thin, slightly flat mouthfeel. This makes it easy to drink, but once it warms the aftertaste becomes dry and bitter. At 8% ABV it’s inefficient, though I could probably throw back the entire bottle myself easily.

Grade: 4/10


  1. Too bad -- it's a nice looking bottle and a nice pour in the tulip glass. Veteran readers will appreciate your commitment to honesty in the face of a tendency to want to be compassionate.

    1. Yeah I had it on draught at TAP NY and it wasn't very good either. I figured maybe I just had palate fatigue going.