Samuel Adams brand pretty much pioneered craft beer when no one else
was doing it (well, not as successfully and on such a large scale, that
is). Their recipes have become rather pedestrian in years past, though
mainstream drinkers are their target audience. That it took this long
for them to release “Rebel Rouser” – a year-round double IPA is quite
surprising. It’s also surprising that it doesn’t taste like every other
beer in their portfolio.
I poured a 12oz bottle into the official Samuel Adams Boston Lager
glass. The best before date was notched at 8/2015 and it cost $2.25
($0.19 per ounce).
Appearance: Fairly dark copper/light brownish hue. Slightly hazy, but
clearer on the bottom than at the top with carbonation always visible.
Pours to a large, off-white, frothy head which laces and retains
Smell: Surprisingly piney and floral aroma. More dank and resiny than
citrusy. Malt presence is also noticeable. Seems to have a yellow
lollipop scent, too.
Taste: When you think of a double IPA you don’t tend to think of the
malty side that much. Though there are plenty of hops in this brew, it’s
amazing how noticeably sweet it is. Right away I taste an almost
cloying caramel and toffee flavor. The hops are quite potent as well
with a strong piney/resiny character. Dank and sticky – in no way
drying. This palette is more akin to a strong amber ale than a DIPA,
though I must admit I enjoy the balance and the uniqueness of the taste.
I completely disagree with the note on the label marketing the beer as a
“West Coast Style” brew. This is classic East Coast through and
through. It works as such.
Drinkability: I was surprised to see such a high alcohol percentage –
8.4% to be exact – on the label of a Samuel Adams brew. This is a
big-bodied beer with a mouthfeel to match. It’s thick, slightly sticky,
but still well-carbonated. I can taste and feel minor alcohol warmth,
which is a little surprising I suppose. The hops linger and leave a
resiny aftertaste. For what it’s worth, Rebel Rouser can hold its own as
a solid DIPA.