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Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPASierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

5,631 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,631
Reviews: 1,355
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.48%
Wants: 349
Gots: 737 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kaseydad on 02-07-2010

A group of hop-heads and publicans challenged our Beer Camp brewers to push the extremes of whole-cone hop brewing. The result is this: a 100 IBU, whole-cone hurricane of flavor. Simply put —Hoptimum: the biggest whole-cone IPA we have ever produced. Aggressively hopped, dry-hopped, AND torpedoed with our exclusive new hop varieties for ultra-intense flavors and aromas.

Resinous "new-school" and exclusive hop varieties carry the bold and aromatic nose. The flavor follows the aroma with layers of aggressive hoppiness, featuring notes of grapefruit rind, rose, lilac, cedar, and tropical fruit—all culminating in a dry and lasting finish.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,631 | Reviews: 1,355
Photo of JJSquid
3.31/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Sticky resin notes with unrealized sharpness. Piney, flat, unbalanced. Great bottle. Disappointing overall.

Photo of Senechaux75
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This hop bomb, when compared to others of it's ilk, comes through to me as the gnarliest, crunchiest beer around. And I mean that all in a good way.

Photo of RyanK252
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Spokeasy Public House

A: Pours deep golden amber with a frothy off white head that settles and laces beautifully.

S: Pungent spicy and pine hops, some herbal and dank notes, a little citrus, a hint of fruitiness, and some caramel malt sweetness.

T: Beautiful fresh hops, pine, spicy notes, some citrus, grapefruit, herbal and dank notes, faint fruity notes, peach and melon (came out more as it warmed), nice caramel malt sweetness, and a hint of alcohol.

M: Towards the fuller end of medium body, moderate carbonation, creamy with a little warmth.

O: One of the advantages of being right in SN's backyard is getting to have this super fresh. Big bold delicious brew.

Photo of username
3.65/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 6/28/14, so nearly a year old.

Decent retention and some lacing.

Smell is foremost alcohol. Behind that is a layer of floral, kind of sweet-piney feel with a tinge of mold.

Taste is dominated by the alcohol-floral tones. Certainly bitter to the point of almost being astringent, lingers for quite awhile. This is balanced by a peculiar sweetness however.

Satisfying feel, not as heavy as expected for the ABV.

Overall I think the age on this particular bottle robbed it of some of its merits. It just wasn't as intense as it presents itself to be, though I can tell the potential is there. Would like to try a fresher release in the future.

Photo of Oregonbrewdude91
4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sweet bitter and wonderful

Photo of craftbeersweden
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A little hazy, amber-golden beer with a two finger high, white head that leaves a lot of lacing.

Nose: Hops, citrus, grapefruit, resin, herbs and orange.
Taste: Grapefruit, grass, resin, mandarin, hops and orange.
Body: Medium to full body. Medium carbonation. A great bitterness that grows at the end. Great texture.

I LOVE this beer! Amazing!

Photo of BigBry
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle, one of a few singles from CA.
Pours a clear, dark orange with a foamy tan head. Foam settles to a thin floating film, small lines of lace.
Smell is all hops, citrus, herbal, grapefruit.
Taste is the same, lots of hoppy bitterness, citrus and pink grapefruit, herbal and grassy. Despite the huge amount of hops, still some malt to balance and keep from burning your tongue with the bitterness. Alcohol is hidden behind, slightly oily mouth feel.
Good level of carbonation, finishes crisp, not too heavy.
A very tasty, balanced Double IPA.

Photo of snilsen13
4.07/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This is, for a beer available in 6-packs, the hoppiest one I've ever had, hands down. The truth is, it is hoppy I can't drink much of it straight up and I applied my license at mixology to make very interesting hybrid beers using this like hop head jet fuel. So you don't get the wrong idea, I do enjoy Ruination and West Coast IPA. In summary, this beer is pretty special.

Photo of magpieken
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 FL OZ bottle. PKGD 07/08/14. Pours a slightly hazy, deep gold colour with a dense, creamy, off white head which refused to settle. On drinking it left some nice lacing. Very floral aroma, pine, citrus, resin. A big whack of hops but pleasantly so. The bitterness dominates the taste but there is also a nice underlying malty sweetness. Medium to full bodied, thick texture, semi dry finish and a gentle alcohol warmth. Plenty of hops but some lovely balance to this one makes it very approachable. 9.

Photo of NiceTaps
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle in a stemmed tulip glass.

A- Pours a bubbly golden-orange color with a 1f firm white head. Slightly hazy. Lots of sticky lacing.

S- Hops rule. Grapefruit, spice, woody, and a bit boozy. I wasn't buying the "rose" description until I smelled for myself. It's so floral, in fact, "Rose"? - I'll give it that.

T- More hops: grapefruit and orange citrus. Floral, spicy and earthy. Sweet bready malts, too.

M- Full body. Syrupy, resinous, boozy. Tangy with a hop bite and enough sweet balance for a pleasant finish.

O- I like that it's not a sugar bomb. At 10.4% abv, it's under control.

Photo of Beer-Revelry
4.94/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pours a light orange and amber, looks like apple juice. Forms a generous and foamy two fingers of slightly off-white head. Head lasts for ages. Nice soapy lacing on the walls of the glass is left behind.
S - Sweet sweet oranges, grapefruit, apples, tangerines, persimmons, hops and a light touch of caramel. Fantastic nose on this IPA.
T - Jaw droppingly good. An immediate an intense bitter bite which fades and develops into a lovely sweet bouquet of citrus. Sweet apples, oranges, grapefruit meat and hops. Lots of boozy warming goodness.
O - An absolutely amazing IPA. Something any true IPA fan needs to try in their lifetime. Fantastic.
V - Four pack of bottles, worth it at any price for an IPA fan I'd imagine.

Photo of CJNAPS
5/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Big hop taste, very clean

Photo of PintOh1759
2.68/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

Had on draft. Expected wayyy more from all the hype around this beer. I'm a hop head and this sint my cup to tea. The alcohol overwhelms this beer from first smell to the last sip that's virtually all you taste other then piney notes.

Photo of henkmudi
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours an orange body with a mostly white head. Aroma made of herbal hops and fruity cake. Palate was medium bodied and smooth with a dry finish. Wonderful bitter flavor of grapefruit, tangerine, pine, toffee and honey. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, sticky, medium carbonation. The beer sticks to the tongue and leaves a strong bitterness,Ton of brilliant fresh hops, but not too bitter, drinkable although moderatly strong.

Photo of beerinabottle
4.96/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

All I can say is Wow!

Photo of KarmicSkrambl8
4.66/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my all time faves in this realm

Hop Happiness....indeed.

Photo of PolarBear3
4.21/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a golden colour with white frothy one fingered head that retains to a thin film

S - Wow..extremely hoppy, floral, herbal grapefruit, peach, pineapple, very tropical on the nose and sweet

T - Similiar to the nose, with grapefruit prominent, matched with some sweetness in caramel, toffee apple with a nice well balnced dry and slightly bitter finish

M - Low carbonation and medium bodied

O - Extremely tasty but sweet hoppy IPA that is balanced nicely. Love the dry finish and would definately recommend.

Photo of BBMuffins
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Great beer, super powered hops, tastes great. Can only drink it once in a while, though. It's great after working outside for a few hours, but you'll only want the one. Very powerful hops. Wonderful.

Photo of discerndnb
4.75/5  rDev +13.6%

best Ive had so far

Photo of doktorhops
4.23/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Imperial or Double IPA (India Pale Ale) what is the difference? Is beer terminology becoming too archaic? Which terminology do you prefer to use? In answer to these questions: Nothing, yes, and I prefer Double IPA (“Imperial” is a bit of an anachronistic term dating back to when English brewers were trying to sway Russian Imperial Czars into drinking their beers). Now that we have established that: #450 is another milestone review which warranted Sierra Nevada’s best - they declare this DIPA as their most insanely hoppy brew at 10.4% ABV and I say “Ave at it!”.

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Hazy, bright ethereal orange body with a bold half centimetre cream coloured head atop. Fantastic that it even managed at head at such a high ABV. 9/10.

S: There’s a massive hop assault on the olfactory senses, but it isn’t as complex as expected... pretty much starburst orange, grapefruit and pine notes, that’s it. Still I’m liking the massiveness of the hops. 8/10.

T: It’s big and sweet, almost a sugar-bomb, then the hops come out and say “Uh-uh, sugar, time to succumb to my bitter glory!” and slap down with a nice big bitter hop finish that is very well balanced. There is a mixture of hop flavours swirling around: starburst orange candy, pine, grapefruit and juicy fruit chewing gum hints abound and easily make your tongue their slave. There are malt characters as well providing a tasty sweet caramel sheen to everything. The finish is impressive in how light the bitterness manages to be given the hop onslaught. That said it is not for the faint of heart - this DIPA is big and demands your immediate flavour attention, and I commend it for that. 9/10.

M: As well as having a big flavour profile the body is quite viscous and coats your tongue in its glorious hop resins like some sort of giant hop blanket. There is a minimal carbonation trying to compete with this viscosity, but overall you may need a glass of water to see this brew through. 8/10.

D: Well I didn’t expect anything less than a bolder, more viscous version of Torpedo and Hoptimum delivers well. I would have to say this is a damn fine benchmark to aspire to if you’re brewing a DIPA and it is definitely a beer that will see itself in my fridge again in the not so distant future. Cheers Sierra Nevada! 8/10.

Food match: Big ales require big flavours, in this respect I am recommending a Habanero Beef Stew or Chicken Vindaloo... If you do this please send me a video.

Photo of PaulFunTime
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Appearance - Gold, great lacing

Smell - Incredibly resinous with some grapefruit rind. A little of the alcohol heat coming through on the back end

Taste - Pine, Citric Rind, Alcoholic burn on the back end.

Mouthfeel - Medium-dry finish

Overall - One of the best DIPAs out there. No tricks with any of the new tropical, fruity

Photo of leantom
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

IMHO, this brewery can do no wrong. Will this beer prove otherwise. Here goes:

L: Orange-amber, clear and see-through, one-inch head and a ton of lacing. Good.

S: Very piney. Some grapefruit and lemon in the hops as well. Also a great honey-malt backbone. Reminds me of a more mellow DFH 90 min.

T: Excellent. Just like DFH 90 min, but somewhat not quite as good. Initial taste of caramel and honey followed by piney malt.

F: Excellent. Thick and sticky pine. Great.

O: Lovely IPA. Will have again.

Photo of DaveBar
4.14/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Purchased at The World Market in Helena Alabama. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- Very good. Dark gold but no head at all

S- LOTS of hops here with tons of malt.

T- Hop bomb! Lots and lots of them. Good malt but a lot of sugar and hops

M- Nice and dry. Very good balance here. Good carbonation for a high abv DIPA

O- Very good. Wish I could get it here in Canada. Nice starter beer but only one at over 10%!

Food Pairing

This wonderful DIPA went well with...... Dynamite Sushi Roll. Bring on the wasabi!


Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L- Pours a hazy orange with a thin head. Leaves some lacing.
S- Just what you would expect from an imperial ipa. Piney resin smell.
T- Tons of whole cone hop, yet a nice blend of the citrus that hides the high alcohol.
F- smoother feel than most imperial ipas due to presence of the citrus blend.

Photo of ConradSomm
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Local restaurant had this on tap and poured it by the pint. Didn't realize it was a 2xIPA until I got home. Delicious.

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Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 5,631 ratings.