The first time I had Harpoon’s IPA I was mildly disappointed. As their flagship beer my expectations were high hoping that it would be a knock-out product. Thankful, I had one more in the fridge with which to review. I must say that it has grown on me and should be recognized as a quality brew, but from whatever reason, it still comes up a little short in my opinion. Interestingly enough this beer does offer a unique spin on an English-style IPA. Allow me to explain.

For me Goose Island IPA is the American standard of an English-style IPA. This is quickly followed by Two Brothers Resistance. Both of these beers are a straw-golden color which is lighter than most IPAs (which have a deeper amber/caramel tone). Harpoon is similar in that their version possessed the same hues gained from the 2 Row Pale malt. Apparently, they add a couple more malts for a toasty flavor that is noticeable.

While Goose Island uses cascade hops, they also some English varieties that give a nice spicy, earthy aroma. Harpoon seems to only use cascade, but they do so in a delicate manner. This is not an “in your face” IPA. It is floral and light bodied. The nose is citrusy, honey-like, and flowery. It does lack some depth in the hops as it comes across rather one dimensional. There is still an enjoyable bitterness and shines through in the latter half of the sip but rather mellowed. The malts are sweet and provide a pleasant, easy sipping pale malt texture.

This is not a heavy beer and finishes clean and crisp. Unfortunately, there is not much of an aftertaste nor does it linger. I’d say this is closer to an APA considering I’ve has hoppier pales than this. While Harpoon’s IPA was a good brew, it failed to leave a lasting impression on me.

ABV: 5.9%

Grade: B-