islay (2755) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - SEP 11, 2011
UPDATED: SEP 16, 2012 12 oz. bottled, labeled “10588 PKGD 8/12/11 A.” Clean, citrusy, fruity, floral smell features lemon poppy seed muffins and orange backed goods scents. There is also a more classic dryness from the hops and caramel beneath the hops wallop. Pours a light orange/copper-tinted gold/bronze. Clear but highly effervescent liquid. Moderate to large amount of long-lasting, thick, light cream-colored head. Produces good lacing. Syrupy and extremely hoppy taste. Lemon, orange, and apricot flavors. Also mineral-y. Reminds me of a triple sec and tonic cocktail with its citrusy and dry hops. Sweetness from the packed maltiness. This is an extreme beer; it is simultaneously very sweet and very dry, thought it’s hard to call it balanced. Actually, it’s fair to say that it’s “too much.” Long, dry finish and aftertaste. Full body. Thick and oily in the palate. The palate effects really aren’t remarkable. It is surprisingly easy to drink for such a high gravity, high alcohol beer. Although I prefer Two Hearted, not to mention Hopslam, to The Oracle, it is something of a double Two Hearted in flavor (Four Hearted?). Given that double IPA is my favorite style, I should like this beer more than I do, but somehow it registers for me as merely good and not great, a mild disappointment. 8/4/7/3/15=>3.7
Re-rate: Approximately 1 oz. pour on tap at the Autumn Brew Review in Minneapolis on 9-15-12. Citrus aroma. Pours a gold/orange. Yeasty, bready, sweet and dry taste with a bite. Tasty and enjoyable in one of my favorite styles. 8/4/8/4/16=>4.0
Combined rating: 8/4/7/4/15=>3.8 adam42381 (386) - Fort Myers, Florida, USA - SEP 7, 2011
Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a chalice. Bottled on August 12, 2011 printed on label.
Appearance: Pours a hazy medium honey-caramel with orange highlights and a 1-2 finger fluffy snow-white head. Excellent lacing that really coats the glass.
Smell: Amazing aroma featuring grapefruit, oranges, pineapple and pine.
Taste: Sweet citrus up front followed by pine in the middle before ending with bitter citrus and pine at the finish. There is just a touch of alcohol at the finish as well. The aftertaste is very bitter and long-lasting. This is a serious hop bomb. There is really no malt to be found, but, in this case, I’m not complaining.
Mouthfeel: Medium-to-full-bodied with just the right amount of carbonation. The hop oils really coat the mouth. Goes down very smooth.
Drinkability: Excellent drinkability. The alcohol is masked pretty well for a beer with 10% ABV.
Overall: Excellent DIPA overall. Bell’s really knows what they’re doing with their DIPAs. While this isn’t as good as Hopslam, in my opinion, this is still great beer. I like that this one is more hop-forward. It’s a hophead’s dream. tomhenderson (166) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - SEP 5, 2011
On tap at Duckworth’s. Greeted with a baseball bat’s slam of hops in the nose emerging from the thick tan headed, somewhat cloudy orange-amber beverage. Beautiful lacing down the glass. The flavor was an excellent balance of incredible hop juices and a malt backbone that never got in the way. Unlike many DIPAs, this one isn’t too caramelly sweet. The hop nectar of grapefruit and pine resin are some of the best I’ve had. Reminds me of a Hop Slam on steroids. bsp77 (724) - Minnesota, USA - SEP 5, 2011
Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Imperial Pint.
Appearance: Hazy honey-gold with thin white head and broken lacing.
Aroma: Light citrus, light spiciness and light toasted malts - nice, but too mild for a DIPA. I hope the taste is better.
Taste: Yeah, the taste is better than the aroma, but this is still a very standard DIPA. Citrus and pine hops countered by lightly sweet toasted and caramel malts. Ends spicy and bitter, with a bit more pine.
Palate: Moderate carbonation, full body that oozes hop oils. Warming and dry. The feel is the best thing about the beer.
Overall: What’s with the hype? This is a standard DIPA, and Hopslam is much better. In terms of more typical DIPAs, give me a Hercules any day. Still, I do like it quite a bit and it is very well made, despite the weaker aroma.
jw0406 (1275) - atlanta, Georgia, USA - SEP 4, 2011
12 oz bottle pours a clear amber color with a nice white head. Aromas of pine, citrus, grapefruit rind. Full bodied, with a huge hops and a dry, bitter finish
thome50 (1295) - Morro Bay via Orange County, California, USA - SEP 4, 2011
Bottle via mattyb83, thanks! Pours a deep copper color with frothy white head that disipates fairly quickly. Aroma is of apple and hops and no real sweet notes like I remember from Hopslam. Taste is overly bitter with some very good hop flavors, mild sweetness near the end but really no malt which is great in my book. Very dry feel. Overall, I very much like this beer and think it comes close to a west coast double IPA. Not as citrus forward as the better west coast offerings but definitely nothing I’d love to have again and again. caralkaline87 (435) - Washington DC, USA - SEP 3, 2011
Pours the standard transparent copper with a fairly large, foamy, off-white head. Nose is floral hops, green apples, and ginger. Flavor is potently bitter, front to back, with a relatively tame malt for so much hop aggression. Alcohol is hidden. Finish continues to be bitter and a little sticky. A better DIPA than I make it sound like, but not exceptional for the style. tennisjoel (1460) - Rochester, Minnesota, USA - SEP 3, 2011
Clear amber body beneath a heavily laced thin white head. Citrus and floral aroma. Flavor is very similar to Hopslam in my opinion. The only difference is that this beer is slightly dryer. It’s a very nice beer, just hard to distinguish from Hopslam. It would be interesting to try these two side by side. Guerde (1297) - Leuven, BELGIUM - AUG 31, 2011
(bottle) Pours a hazy, deep amber color with a medium cream colored head that retains very well and leaves sheets of lacing along the glass. Aroma is very potent and expressive, with a large amount of juicy, candy-like hops showing up. The aroma is so potent in fact, that I can smell this beer from about a foot away. Aside from the potency there is a lot of pineapple, flower petals, tangelo juice, and quickly this shifts to plenty of grassiness that I didn’t particularly care for. A suggestion of Darjeeling tea. The aroma really likes to bounce back and forth between candy-like and grassy, which makes things interesting. That candy element smells a bit like sweet tarts. Alcohol is showing through on the nose. Flavor is pretty sweet to begin with, with plenty of candied orange peel, lightly scorched caramel, tangelo juice, which quickly shifts to the dry and grassy hop finish, that then veers towards astringency. Somewhat tea-like. Mouthfeel is smooth and the alcohol flashes immediately upon drinking which yields a peppery element. Overall this is a solid IIPA. EricE (1367) - Seattle, Washington, USA - AUG 26, 2011
Bottle from Vienna Whole Foods. Clear orange yellow pour with with a nice white head on top. Grapefruit and tropical fruits on the nose. Very sweet when it first hits the tongue. Very bitter and hoppy and alcoholic. Resinous and a bit sticky. A bit harsh, but overall tasty.