The Imperial Texan by Martin House Brewing Co Taste Test

The Imperial Texan by Martin House Brewing Co Taste Test

The Imperial Texan Double Red Ale by Martin House

The Imperial Texan Double Red Ale by Martin House

I walked past this beer at Total Wine & More on Saturday, and I almost didn’t buy it.  I liked the look of the can and all, but it was $3.99 for a single 16 oz can.  I’m glad that I didn’t pass this one up based on the price because this might be my new favorite beer.

Here is what Martin House says about the Imperial Texan on their website:

“This is a heavy-duty 9% abv red ale with a profusion of hop flavor and aroma.  This beer is as big and proud as Texas. Because we add almost two pounds of American hops per barrel very late in the beer making process, The Imperial Texan is able to retain a wondrously piney and resinous hop character that perfectly balances its smooth but strong and dry malt backbone.  This beer has a sticky presence that puts each sip perfectly on the tongue.”

I like looking at what has to say about different beer styles, so here is what they say this style:

The use of American hops in this ale lends to the perception of medium hop bitterness, flavor and aroma. Coupled with a solid malt profile, this should be a beer with balance between hop bitterness and malt sweetness. Some breweries will choose to bottle-condition this style, leading to possible fruity esters and some haze in their appearance. This is another example of modern American brewers taking an established style and boosting the flavor. California brewers are credited with creating this innovative style.”

The Imperial Texan in glass

The Imperial Texan in glass

My notes from trying this beer start out “Smells like Heaven.  Lots of hops aroma.  Piney and citrusy.”  This one really has a great smell to it.  You get all the hops that Martin House adds late in the brewing right in the nose.

The taste follows the smell with tons of that great piney and grapefruity hops flavor.  It’s super clean and fresh, and all the hops hide the huge 9% abv level perfectly.

The finish lingers for quite awhile, so get to experience a little bit extra with this beer.  Everything is super smooth because of the caramel malts.

This beer is similar in style to Velvet Hammer from Peticolas, but the hops go a lot more towards an IPA than the VH.  Both are fantastic beers, and I’m proud that they come from DFW breweries.

I love IPAs and Double/Imperial IPAs, but this might be my new favorite beer.  The combination of the Red Ale backbone with the wallop of hops is beyond great.

If you see this beer around, I highly recommend it.  I’ll be looking for more Martin House beers to get on the blog, but this was a great start.

Thanks for the read.  Email me at or find me on Twitter @dfwbrews.

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