English IPA

Glassware: Nonick pint
  • England
  • Ale
  • ABV = 5.0 – 7.5% (Normal to elevated)^
  • IBU = 40-60
  • SRM = 6-14
A moderately strong, hop-forward pale English ale with a dry finish.

Generally has more hop aroma and flavour and less fruitiness and/or caramel than Best Bitter. Less hop intensity and a more pronounced malt flavour than American IPA.


  • Colour^ = Gold to amber
  • Clarity = Good; unfiltered dry-hopped versions may be slightly hazy

Key Aromas & Flavours:

  • Malt = None to moderate; caramel-like or toasty, if present
  • Yeast = Low to moderate; fruity
  • Hops = Moderate; floral, spicy-peppery or citrus-orange (Optional: slightly grassy dry-hop aroma)
  • Malt = Moderate; bready (Optional: biscuit, toast, toffee and/or caramel)
  • Yeast = Moderate; fruity
  • Hops = Moderate to high; floral, spicy-peppery, citrus-orange, and/or slightly grassy
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Assertive
  • Balance = Towards bitterness, but the malt should still be noticeable in support

Medium-dry to very dry finish; bitterness may linger into the aftertaste but should not be harsh.


  • Body = Medium; smooth
  • Carbonation = Medium
  • Alcohol warmth = A low, smooth alcohol warmth can and should be detected in stronger versions

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = Pale ale malt
  • Yeast = British ale yeast
  • Hops = English hops are traditional
  • Other = Hard water containing calcium sulphate is best-suited for this style

Historical Development:

Accounts of its origins vary, but most agree that what later became known as IPA was a pale ale prepared for shipment to India in the late 1700s and early 1800s. First brewed in London, breweries in Burton-on-Trent, with their high-sulfate water, began to dominate the market by the mid-1800s. Strength and popularity declined over time, and the style virtually disappeared in the second half of the 20th century before it underwent a craft beer rediscovery in the 1980s.

Commercial Examples:

Fuller’s Bengal Lancer, Worthington White Shield

^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus.
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2015 Style Guidelines.

Discovering Beer is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Cicerone® Certification Program.

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