Grab A Beer: Widmer Deadlift Imperial IPA

February 11th, 2010 · 2 Comments · Beer Releases, Beer Reviews, Oregon Breweries

Widmer Deadlift Imperial IPA
Alcohol by Volume: 8.6%

Intro: You may have heard about the disaster interrupting Widmer’s first attempt at brewing this Imperial IPA. But, no power-outage was going to keep them from delivering this one to market. After pouring out 62,000 pints of beer in that unfortunate incident, they started over and their first distributed Imperial IPA is now available. This Imperial IPA uses the Nelson Sauvin hop strain, which is imported from New Zealand. Widmer has played around with this hop in the past, using it in their draft-only Full Nelson IPA and Half Nelson IPA (which I remember trying when I was in town for the Oregon Brewers Fest), as well as using it a mix of hops for their Drifter Pale Ale.

Description: Pours a clear copper with medium head that sticks around for quite a while. Big aroma of orange and mango hop flavors. The citrus hops come through in the taste, but the significant sugary malt presence overpowers them. A big bitterness lingers in the finish. It is well-balanced, but the taste leans a bit more toward the malty side. This is a nice beer (and I’ve had several people tell me they love it), but if I’m drinking a high ABV Imperial IPA I prefer something with more hop flavor popping out. The hop flavor profile in the taste just didn’t match what was there in the aroma. The alcohol presence is evident, and at 8.6% ABV, drinking an entire 4-pack probably is not in your best interest. Overall, this is a solid, well-crafted addition to the Widmer year-round lineup, and I wouldn’t hesitate to grab a bottle or glass of this occasionally.

Verdict: Worth trying
Availability: Now available year-round on tap and in bottles for a suggested price of $8.99 per four-pack.

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Commercial Description/Press Release:

Deadlift Imperial IPA is unlike any Imperial IPA you’ve ever lifted from the beer aisle. It has the strong hop flavor you’d expect from an Imperial IPA but no heaviness that could weigh down your desire to take another sip. The unique flavor stems in part from Nelson Sauvin hops imported from New Zealand. Deadlift’s other component, a simple but fully braced malt backbone muscles up enough malty sweetness and caramel character to spot the incredibly robust hop flavor and aroma.

Deadlift Imperial IPA uses Nelson Sauvin hops from New Zealand’s best hop growing region: South Island’s Nelson. This region produces some of the most flavorful hops found anywhere. These hops have an intense citrus, fruity, berry-like aroma and flavor that makes them unique. The result will surely be a welcome workout for your taste buds.

In the interest of full disclosure to satisfy the FTC’s law, this review was of a sample bottle received from the brewery.

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2 Comments so far ↓

  • Paul

    I would agree with your opinion of this beer. The smell certainly suggests more hop flavor. Perhaps I would have liked a bit more bitterness up front too??? Well balanced. A bit sweeter than I would have expected. Also, the ABV is very evident. I realize its an IIPA but the alcohol is a little overbearing. I do have to admit I did like the price. I got it for 7.99. Bang for buck is pretty awesome! I would drink this again!

  • frank manfredi

    I live in San Diego, Ca. Where can Deadlift be purchased ??

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