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Review by Tip Top on 04/17/08  
Score Appearance Smell Taste Mouthfeel Overall Impression Year
86 3 10 17 4 9 2008
Thanks to bakes for the bottle.

A - Pours a copper colored body with garnet highlights. Clean and clear. Head is buttery in color and huge, standing in at about 2 full inches of thick foam. The head is a thing of beauty really, made up of tight bubbles that seem to make up one big mass. Superb retention and sticky lacing.

S - Big toasty malts are the first thing to meet my nose. Alone with the toastiness is a sweetness of light red fruits, mostly strawberry. Big time piney, resinous hops. They certainly didn't let up with this one.

T - Starts off with bit time, toasty caramel malts that just fill up your taste buds. Sweetness comes in with a flavor I am having a tough time pinpointing, but it could just be more sharp caramel malt flavors. In come the hops. They scream to take over as the centerpiece of this beer. Big resinous piney hops blast the palette with bitterness. Sort of a nutty flavor on the finish, with bitterness lasting for a while in the aftertaste.

M - Big a full bodied. Not quite chewy, but it's almost there. Carbonation is high, but yet smooth.

Overall - Great brew. Could be my favorite from Ithaca as they continue to do great things with the Excelsior series. Lots of depth and flavor. Recommended.

Served In: Tulip