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Hop Monster - Paper City Brewery Co., Inc.

Not Rated.
Hop MonsterHop Monster

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

157 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 157
Reviews: 138
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 14.02%
Wants: 14
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Paper City Brewery Co., Inc. visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: UnionMade on 10-30-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 157 | Reviews: 138 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of PatandDavid


4.45/5  rDev +17.7%

This was all about the citrus...from the color, to the aroma, to the taste, it really brought it all on. Color was cloudy goldenrod, and it came with a bold citrus aroma. Slight head. Taste was 100% puer grapefruit, even in the texture (malt, what malt? yeah it was in there as a supporting player but hidden). Still smooth, and drinkability was not held up by all that fruit. Nice change.

07-03-2004 03:16:20 | More by PatandDavid
Photo of beerluvr

Ontario (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +14.6%

Pours a very sticky and white head settling over hazy golden/light amber liquid. Nice flowery grapefruit hop nose riding over a sweet smelling malt base. Taste is a very sweet malty foundation thats soon overridden by massive hoppy bitterness. The bitterness is tasted and felt on the palate after swallowing. Very aggressive hopping! Finishes quintessentially bittersweet with slight alcohol warmth felt in the throat long after swallowing. Very good stuff!
Thanks to ppoitras (Pete) for the bottle.

06-27-2004 16:43:55 | More by beerluvr
Photo of wyllder


2.55/5  rDev -32.5%

Pours a light, cloudy amber with little to no head.

Has a very distinctive, fruity nose, with grapefruit and apricot greeting you when you smell it. This is probably one of the best smelling beers I've ever had, it's almost like smelling a nice perfume.

First hit on the palate is a rush of hop bitterness that slowly fills out with grapefruit & apricot flavors. The grapefruit and apricot turn into an orange peel aftertaste as they move to the back of the palate. As you progress through the bottle, the hoppiness takes backseat and the fruitiness tends to overwhelm the palate.

Most frustratingly for me, the orange peel aftertaste actually settles in the back of the throat like a bad cough medicine and is quite unpleasant. By about 2/3 of the way through my 12oz bottle, it became a battle to actually finish it.

This isn't necessarily a bad beer, just much fruitier than I prefer in an IPA and possessing an aftertaste that sat really poorly with me. I can see why some people might like or even love it, but it's not for me and came really close to meeting the sink drain.


06-25-2004 11:07:32 | More by wyllder
Photo of taez555


3.55/5  rDev -6.1%

This beer poured a white head with a translucent, slight chill hazed, orange body.

The nose was pure grapefruit juice. Sharp spice and even some gum. For the most part though, pure juice smell. No peel, but juice.

The taste was sort of the same. Medium boded and very sugary sweet. Hops, hops and more hops. A nice full malt sweetness followed by a hot pepper, without the burn, sort of taste. Pepper, citrus peel, citrus juice, grapefruit, even some traces of apples. It starts very soft and even hoppy then proceeds through a big spice hop burst then ends with a hot pepper(minus the burn) and citrus taste. Almost like juicy fruit near the end. The overall bitterness is middle of the road. It just sits nicely in the mix.

What a bizarre IPA. Sugary sweet, hot peppers and lots of grapefruit juice. An odd IPA, but in a way, very cool.

06-24-2004 08:36:22 | More by taez555
Photo of tavernjef


4.38/5  rDev +15.9%

Murky lemon gold body, spongy fluffed up white cap, resides slowly to a thin broken skim and a bubbly collar. Lacing in strings.

Aroma is raw and in your face with a nice display of citrusy fruits of, peach, apricot, tangerine, and nectarine pulp and pits, sugary, with a super smoothly rendered spruce fir pine floating wthin each wiff.

Flavors are fruitastic! Incredibly easy tropical citrus pulp-like acids rendering those listed in the aroma with bits of grapefruit coming through in the finish.. Very nice frothy feel. Delicate soft pine, sweet pale malts, sugary, juicy, just lovely. The hop profile is quite unique on this one.

Feel is amazingly smooth and juicy thick of hop oils, medium to full bodied, lightly drying and tame bitterness in the finish with left over tropical fruit pulp sitting on the tongue.

Oh so smooth and delicious, the calm bite makes for some very easy drinking and the flavors continue to keep it fun and interesting. Although I can't see drinking a whole lot of these due to its pulpy, yet appealing texture and higher ABV, but man it sure is worth trying one glass of this tropical nectar. A juicy thanks goes out to Jason for the chance to try it!

06-20-2004 00:00:33 | More by tavernjef
Photo of bigbeerdrinka


3.88/5  rDev +2.6%

Appearance: Pours a light amber to golden yellow color. A nice decently thick white head forms about an inch thick. The head nicely laces the glass.

Smell: For something labeled Hop Monster this beer's smell is nothing but unique. What clearly smells to be a tart grapefruit-like juicy and tangy smell complete inhibits my nostrils. More sweet aromas are present with little or no scent of apparant bitterness.

Taste: Initially this beer is quite sweet with a fruity taste which explodes in my mouth halfway through. Though this beer is not sour, it is tart and going down, brings out such flavors as fruit, minor alcohol, and something which i cannot quite figure out. All of these flavors linger on the palate until another sip is taken and the explosion occurs again.

Mouthfeel: This beer has minimal carbonation and is not very thick at all. Overall it goes down quite quickly but the pungent sweetness is almost too much, but at the same time is just quite amazing.

05-29-2004 04:57:46 | More by bigbeerdrinka
Photo of mschofield


4.33/5  rDev +14.6%

Pours a cloudy opaque orange-amber topped with a one finger white head, leaves webs of lacing.
Very fruity aroma, grape, apricot, and although it doesn't sound good - orange juice concentrate.
Robust citrus taste - mainly orange, some grapefruit, malty enough to come close to balancing the hops considering the style. Wood note, spicy and nicely bitter.
Medium bodied. The AOBF had all sorts of great beers from all over, but I kept going back to this local again and again.

05-25-2004 16:37:33 | More by mschofield
Photo of BeerResearcher


3.45/5  rDev -8.7%

12oz brown bottle. No freshness date.
It pours a chill hazed gold with a fast fading white head and very little lace.
It has an odd sour buttermilk aroma, followed by a big floral hop smell.
The malt is buried by the candy sugary flavor.
The taste is overwhelmingly pink grapefruit with sugar.
A lemon sourball taste emerges.
A shot of alcohol peaks through.
Nice effort, but a bit too sweet for my taste.

05-15-2004 03:42:06 | More by BeerResearcher
Photo of brewandbbq

New Hampshire

3.9/5  rDev +3.2%

On tap at Redbones,10.5 oz serving came in a full pint glass, that's what I'm talkin' about!
White,fluffy head sat atop a pint of golden hop nectar.
Very pungent,sweet,fresh,juicy hops in the nostrils.
Almost candi-like,with crazy fruit action going on,not at all a shy brew.
Big hop flavor and sweet. Very little malt,might be brewed with candi sugar and lots of late added whole leaf hops.
Very smooth bitterness, mostly just juicy hops,a myriad of fruits,and residual sugars. Alcohol warming as it goes down,nice, not too hot.
Medium bodied and not very crisp. A different take on the IIPA, very good but not extremely drinkable. Just too sweet,dry it up some and maybe some more bittering hops.

05-03-2004 03:21:27 | More by brewandbbq
Photo of Jason


3.9/5  rDev +3.2%

$8.95 a six pack @ Charles Street Liquors, Boston, MA:


Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Decent foaming action, thin white lacing leaves a modest trail down the glass. The hazy golden hue shows some carbonation.

Smell: Big aroma of warm ripe tropical fruit, tree bark, pine needles and a faint fusel alcohol. Very aromatic in almost a pungent kind of way.

Taste: Very juicy, a tab pungent and puckering with lots of piney, tobacco-like, grapefruit rind and tree bark hop flavor and bitterness. A decent malt base with ample pale malt sweetness, almost sugary. Fuming alcohol in the end shows off the strength. The finish dries up quick with a long drawn out scathing bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and slick on the tongue, the slickness increases with a bold body showing after the carbonation drops out.

Notes: This is a rude Imperial IPA, it smacks the palate around until it can’t take anymore. Each sip is more blissful abuse … brews in the raw like this I learn to enjoy even though they don’t hold back.

04-28-2004 02:07:40 | More by Jason
Photo of necoadam


3.53/5  rDev -6.6%

Hop monster is right. Poured out a light orange color with some decent amount of carbonation that lasts all the way through. Smell was quite sweet. Very piney with some light fruit and lots of hops. Taste was interesting. Huge sweetness upfront with some malts in the middle that then blends with a ton of hops that last all the way through. Hops are quite sharp at the aftertaste. Not a bad beer. It starts out a little too sweet, but that's my only complaint.

04-28-2004 01:16:56 | More by necoadam
Photo of AllThingsNinja


3.55/5  rDev -6.1%

This hazy golden-green beer may not have been given sufficient time to settle in the cask. The head retention was good, and it left a fair amount of lace on the glass. The aromas were dominated by intense citrus notes. As were the flavors of this hop monster. There was little balance, it was an uberhopped brew. Beginning with more floral hop notes and eventually becoming a grapefruit sour fest. There was little malt character to speak of, the only balance coming from somewhat woody notes - oak maybe. It's a fun drink, very full bodied but tastes too much like a tart breakfast juice for me to enjoy much in the evenings. Maybe it would pair well with some pancakes and bacon...

04-17-2004 11:20:41 | More by AllThingsNinja
Photo of beergeek279


3.35/5  rDev -11.4%

Served in the 12 oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The color is copper, with a filmy white head. The smell is a somewhat minty/citrus hop. The taste is a fairly grassy hop with a bit of citrus taste, and a bit of malt that seems a bit muddled. Mouthfeel is average. As for drinkability, probably wouldn't have too many more.

Thanks to UnionMade for the bottle. Just not particularly impressed with this one, as it just doesn't seem to be within that IPA balance that the greats have. It's a pleasure to give it a try, but this wouldn't be one I'd go out of my way to get.

04-08-2004 16:43:59 | More by beergeek279
Photo of francisweizen


4.25/5  rDev +12.4%

This brew is a murky dark orange colour with a fluffy white head of foam. The aromas are a bit rough, hoppy, alcoholic, and reminsicent of the DFH 90 minute IPA. The taste is similar to the aromas and packs quite a wallop! A bunch of bitter hops up front, with some intense malts in the middle, and some booziness in the finish! The mouthfeel is medium bodied and dry as a bone and the drinkability is top notch. Nice!

02-16-2004 04:43:01 | More by francisweizen
Photo of Bighuge


4.33/5  rDev +14.6%

This beer has a murky looking orange glow/scarlet red thing going on. The head is bubbly, but minimal. Lace is intricate. The aroma is great. It's raw, resinous, piney and cannabis-like. It's even got a litttle caramel malt underneath the hop field paradise. My first thought upon sipping was, "Wow, an IIPA with some great malt character." Upon further sips, the malt character diminishes quite a bit and this does become the "Hop Monster." The malts lay some sweet, toffee-like background music. But the hops are forceful. And enjoyable. Blunt and edgey. Bitter and raw. Resinous and pungent. There's even a bit of an alcohol burn. Wonder what the a/v is here. All in all, this is a little caustic, but what the hell: It's good.

02-07-2004 05:44:02 | More by Bighuge
Photo of Stopper


3.68/5  rDev -2.6%

The appearance is a cloudy apricot color, with a very thin white head. The aroma is a bright, slightly citrusy hoppiness on a sweet background. The taste is immediately very spicy and a bit astringent, like chewing on grass, with a mouthfeel that is nice, if a bit thinner than I expected. There is a very slight sweetness under these hops, but definitely sublte enough to leave no doubt that the hops are running this show. The finish just brings more of the same spice and astringency, but the sweetness fades leaving the hops even more exposed. This bitterness is really very drying, inviting me back to where I started the vicious cycle.

This is definitely a hop monster. I enjoy the spicy accent of the hops, which I rarely perceive so early in the flavor profile of a beer, but for me the overall hop quality is a bit more dry and astringent than ideal. I guess I should have expected this when the bottle told me it had an unreasonable amount of hops.

01-16-2004 04:50:03 | More by Stopper
Photo of marburg


4.33/5  rDev +14.6%

Soupy fog haze and a moderate head. And it gets interesting from there. Piney hop salad with small, marinated tangerines and apricots. A puzzling hop flavor dominates the whole brew. It's clearly very bitter, very hoppy. But this doesn't strike me as having a terribly "over the top" hop presence. Oily hoppiness really kicks in at the finish, inspiring traditional "grapefruit" comparisons. But on the whole, this strikes more of bitter greens than your normal overly hopped IPA. Syrupy canned fruit and hops are the accents and the finishing touches. Very drinkable, very interesting. Definitely better than most Americanized beers in that it's more creative than extreme.

01-11-2004 15:05:22 | More by marburg
Photo of nixhecks

Rhode Island

3.9/5  rDev +3.2%

Poured a hazy golden orange color with a good sized, white-sand colored head. Aroma was sweet and citrusy, with a tell-tale smell of sweet candy-like alcohol. By the first sip the head had dissapated to a film, showing no signs of giving up more than it already had. This was a very smooth IPA for a name like hop monster. To start it was very sweet and fruity, kind of apple-ish. The finish was a bit bitter, but nothing like I expected. Although maybe not largely drinkable, this was an excellent IPA with all the characteristics any hop-head would be seeking. Nicely done, this brewery has definetely attracted my attention.

01-10-2004 02:16:57 | More by nixhecks
Photo of jazzmac


2.95/5  rDev -22%

Hazy amber color with a nice foamy head. Hops are overpowering on first smell. The beer slams into your palate on the first sip with overwhelming hops. There is not much body here to back up the hops and alcohol. Very disappointed as I love every beer this brewery makes, it felt like hops for hops sake without thought to balancing the flavor.

11-05-2003 21:41:46 | More by jazzmac
Photo of far333


3.5/5  rDev -7.4%

Apricot color with a beige bubbly foamy head. There are large particles suspended in the beer. The aroma is honey and light hops, and masks the huge flavor lying beneath. The flavor kicks you in the teeth all at once. Big flavors of bitter hops, with a slight piney aftertaste and a bitter orange peel finish. Mouthfeel is tingly. An alcoholic flourish lingers afterward. This beer can stand up to all of the big big Imperial IPA's out there, however, like those big IIPA's, I feel that the flavor is overtaken and ruined by the strong alcohol power.

10-22-2003 02:06:51 | More by far333
Photo of Jdiddy

Rhode Island

3.43/5  rDev -9.3%

I was a bit let down by this. It's not bad but it is not spectacular either. Suprisingly, the scent is not very hoppy. I prefer the scent of a 90 IPA from Dogfish. It does hide the alcohol well but the taste is just ok. It has that bitter (cellar/dirt-like) aftertase that some very hopped beers have. That shows me that something was not done right. The beer is ok until the aftertaste. A bit musty. I am all for hops (the hoppier the better!) but it has to be balanced right and this isn't. I would not rush to buy this again.

10-09-2003 22:58:35 | More by Jdiddy
Photo of mikeys01


4.08/5  rDev +7.9%

The hop monster served from the bottle appears a hazy amber/orange, with a fairly foamy white head. Aroma is fairly sweet and the hop aroma is actually fairly subdued, or at least balanced with enough malt that it isn't scary to inhale. First sip was like sucking on a mouthful of hop flowers, reach out and grab you hop bitterness. The palate quickly adjusts and the beer also mellows a bit as it warms a bit, the malt character becomes more evident. You briefly taste a nice caramel malt sweetness, then a vicious citrus tang on the back of the tongue kicks in as an aftertaste. Wow, hop monster indeed, probably the best brew I've tried from Paper City. Would love to try some on draft...

10-02-2003 21:35:32 | More by mikeys01
Photo of chaduvel


3.25/5  rDev -14%

Pours a dark gold copper color with a wispy head that doesn't stay around for long at all. Aroma is of woodsy hops, oak, maple, and leafy. Now for the first taste. Overwhelming hops on the intake, woodsy hops at that, then comes cloying malt sweetness, fruity malts--apricots, pears maybe? Thick mouth feel. Ends with another welcome of leafy hops and more sweet malt. The cloying malts remind me of a Malt Liquor [I'm not a big fan]. This is a well-balanced beer for such big hops, but I didn't care for the malt characteristics or the weird sweet flavors. Definitely worth a try though.

09-24-2003 15:10:21 | More by chaduvel
Photo of UnionMade

New York

4.33/5  rDev +14.6%

That's my picture of the beer to the right of this. I poured it out of that very bottle.
The beer pours a hazy orange-gold color, topped with a thin misting of head. The head actually seems to pick up as you drink, finishing with about 1/8" of creamy white foam. I've never had that happen before. Unprecedented retention, with active streamers of carbonation quickly rising to feed to head.
The aroma is initially very well balanced, particularly for being such a huge beer. Big malt is balanced with equally big hops. A nice toasty character to the malt, with a touch of caramel. A resinous hopping takes over as the beer warms, with a pungent citric/piney aroma. Some phenolic esters hiding under the hops, with some green apple, pear, and apricot. Very light grain. A moderate grapefruity quality to the hops, with a floral feel. Wether from the hops, esters, or a combination, I'm not sure. Very light alcohol peeping through towards the end.
The flavor is big, very big. Huge malts start up the beer, with a big, thick mouthfeel. Some caramel and toasted malt, quickly swallowed by an agressive hop attack. Big piney hopping enters the picture, somewhat oily, mingling with some estery fruitiness in the middle. The hops gain in stature, taking on a big, resinous citric quality, nearly drowning out the malt, and finishing the beer with a big explosive bitterness. Some grapefruit towards the end, with hints of apple and apricot hiding under the hops in the middle. A bit of under-ripened peach. Some alcohol is apparent in the finish as the beer warms up, with an oily hoppiness becoming more and more apparent. The malt comes through more, balancing out the massive hoppiness nicely.
I'd say this is somewhere in imperial IPA territory. The beer is really huge, with better balance than most imperial IPAs, in my opinion. The malts are more complex and come through a bit more, so it's not just a hop tea. Nice and complex, with plenty of layers to both the hops and malts. Excellent.

09-24-2003 06:32:31 | More by UnionMade
Photo of goz


3.63/5  rDev -4%

Chill hazed cloudy blonde pour, good size creamy white head, slowly recedes to a good lace. Aroma is perfumy, flowery, and some citrus. Flavor has a slight malt twang at the front, and a strong citric, flowery, bitter hop ending that lingers on. Medium in body, medium carbonation, and a bit of a medicinal quality sneaks in at the end. I liked the original Hop Monster more than this one.

09-05-2003 01:23:43 | More by goz
Hop Monster from Paper City Brewery Co., Inc.
85 out of 100 based on 157 ratings.