- ABV = 7.5 – 10.0% (High)^
- IBU = 60-100
- SRM = 6-14
A strong, intensely hop-forward and bitter pale American ale.
More alcohol, hop bitterness, and hop flavour than American IPA. Lacks the malt richness, residual sweetness and body of American Barleywine, with a greater overall hop balance. Drinkability is an important consideration; this should not be a heavy, sipping beer.
- Colour^ = Gold to amber
- Clarity = Generally good; a little haze is acceptable
Key Aromas & Flavours:
- Malt = Low; neutral to grainy
- Hops = Moderate to high; citrus, floral, pine, resin, spice, tropical fruit, stone fruit, berry, or melon
- Yeast = None to low; fruity, if present
- Other = Alcohol may be noted, but should not have a “hot” character
- Malt = Low to moderate; neutral to grainy, with light caramel or toast possible
- Hops = High; citrus, floral, pine, resin, spice, tropical fruit, stone fruit, berry, or melon
- Yeast = None to moderate; fruity, if present
- Perceived Bitterness^ = Highly assertive
- Balance = Towards the hops
- Other = (Optional: A light, clean, smooth alcohol flavour)
Dry to medium-dry finish with a lingering hoppy, bitter aftertaste; should not finish sweet or heavy.
- Body = Medium; smooth
- Carbonation = Medium
- Alcohol warmth = Restrained, smooth alcohol warmth acceptable
- Malt = Two-row malt (sugar additions are common)
- Hops = American or New World hop varietals
- Yeast = American ale yeast with a clean or lightly fruity profile
An American craft beer innovation first developed in the mid/late-1990s as more intense version of American IPA. Became more mainstream and popular throughout the 2000s and inspired additional IPA creativity. Russian River Pliny the Elder, first brewed in 2000, helped popularize the style.
Rarely called Imperial IPA. Many modern versions have multiple dry-hop additions.
Russian River Pliny the Elder, Stone Ruination Double IPA 2.0, Port Brewing Hop-15
^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus (Version 5.0)
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2021 Style Guidelines.