1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

5,385 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,385
Reviews: 1,332
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.48%
Wants: 265
Gots: 607 | FT: 5
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:
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 added by: kaseydad on 02-07-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 5,385 | Reviews: 1,332 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.95/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Feels like a thousand IBU, a lot of sweet malt backing it up. The alcohol is huge and is well hidden by the taste. Huge foamy retained white head. Hoppy aromas. Citrus lime and lemon, a little grapefruit.Some palate shredding. Very drinkable.Bottle from Premiere.

Sammy, Jun 19, 2011
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -4.3%

t0rin0, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap for the 2nd Anniversary event at Tony's Darts Away in Burbank, CA.

Pours a clear dark orange with a foamy tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots and streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of citrus zest and herbal hops. Taste is of citrus zest, grapefruit, herbal hops, and slight malt on the finish. There is a medium amount of bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good DIPA with a better taste than smell.

UCLABrewN84, Apr 22, 2012
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -4.3%

djrn2, Dec 02, 2011
Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev -4.3%

zestar, Jun 08, 2013
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -4.3%

spycow, Jan 10, 2013
Photo of Thorpe429
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Fire Works Pizza in Arlington, VA over the weekend. Served in a sample glass. Pours a clear golden-peach color with a nice white head and some nice lacing on the way down. The nose carries some good tropical fruits behind some strong orange and citrus. The flavor falls back quite a bit from there, as the bitterness gets to me a bit too much for the hop flavor. Body is light-medium with average carbonation and a hefty bitterness paired with a fair amount of alcohol. Nose was by far the best part of this one.

Thorpe429, May 09, 2012
Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

acurtis, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

nmann08, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of metter98
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear orange in color and has a thin ring of off white bubbles encircling the edges of the glass. No carbonation is visible in the form of rising bubbles.
S: There are moderate aromas of floral hops in the nose--this beer almost smells like a marigold.
T: The taste is rather hoppy and like the smell tastes very similar to marigold flowers. The hops contribute a moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
D: The beer is rather easy to drink despite the hoppy flavors and bitterness because they do not overpower your palate.

metter98, Mar 06, 2011
Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Texasfan549, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of brentk56
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a brilliantly clear copper color with a massive head (just what one would expect from a Sierra Nevada hoppy beer); clumps of foam stick to the side of the glass

Smell: Tropical fruit salad, with tangerine, pineapple and a hint of mango; the crystal malt also leaves a sugar subtext underneath

Taste: As the beer warms, the malt makes a stronger impression, with the caramel sweetness laying down a backbone from which the hop flavors are suspended; and what a load of hops there are, with the citrusy, pineapple flavors detected in the aroma marching all over the taste buds, and creating a menthol-vanilla that lingers into the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body; just a bit sticky; moderate carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Another signature Sierra Nevada IPA, but elevated a notch or two for the hopheads; this one is very aggressive on the tongue and a bit raw in character; a fine beer, but I find myself taking smaller and smaller sips to mitigate the tongue-lashing

brentk56, Jan 15, 2011
Photo of BEERchitect
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's about time that Sierra Nevada brings out the big guns with their take on the fastest growing style of beer- Imperial IPA.

Bright golden with copper highlights, the beer carries a froathy off-white head that eventually falters with the immense alcohol stresses. No lace with only moderate retention. Light legging clings to the glass with a gentle swirl.

Moderately strong aromas of caramel and grapefruit sing the praises of a big IPA. Citrus piths (as revealed on the label) is fused with orange zest, fresh-cut grass, and gentle pine notes for a rounded, juicy aroma. The scent is balanced with maltiness that reminds me of caramel/barley malt.

Stong hop flavors of those citrus, grass, and pine character carry over to taste. But the malt influence is felt much more than the aroma suggests. Caramel maltiness make the hops flavors seem as if they are candy-coated citrus fruits. Definately closer to balance than most hop-forward Imperial IPA's. Alcohol flavor comes in just before the finish with the characteristic of nail polish remover and though it helps to dry the beer and crispen up the malt influence, it does provide a harsher, solventy finish and aftertaste.

Robust sweetness to the feel because of the malt creaminess and gentle carbonation. And with a full mid-palate, the malts begin to fade as the hop bitterness and dryness play more boldly on the finish. But the beer holds onto a bit more sweetness and maltiness even in the drying finish than is generally prefered in a big IPA's. Growing alcohol sensations eventually numb the palate as the solvent flavors intergect.

This is a very good Imperial IPA that, surprisingly carries a heafty malty-sweet maouthfeel, despite Sierra being known for their malty-dry, effortlessly clean, and error-free beers. The beer gets closer to 90 Minute and Maharaja than it does Dreadnaught or Pliny.

BEERchitect, Jan 28, 2011
Photo of kjkinsey
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

kjkinsey, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a deep bright orangey color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some excellent lacing. Aroma of floral hops is quite powerful and enjoyable with some good citrus notes and light pine. Taste is also dominated by huge floral hoppy notes with good citrus undertones and malt backbone is not too sweet. Body is full with excellent carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Wow!

Phyl21ca, Aug 17, 2012
Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -4.3%

GRG1313, Feb 11, 2013
Photo of mikesgroove
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a somewhat hazy, mostly clear deep orange amber. Big two inch plus white head formed immediatly on top and slowly faded down to reveal on a slight ring of lace along the top. Decent side glass lace was evident from the start. Lots of visible carbonation streaming up from the bottom.

Aroma was delicous. Full on citrus hop blast from the start. Deep orange and tangerine tones dominated here. Mixed in was a tiny bit of sugar, but alot of grapefruit and some lemon. Very fresh, bitter citrus smell. A slight aroma of alcohol could also be detected.. Such a strong hop presence. Tons of very bitter citrus hops, sweet and a good amount of alcohol. There was no balance here, and none was to be expected. Just a down the hatch, hardcore double IPA. But in that really good way, damn this was fine. Super sticky and smooth. This was a thick, almost syrup like brew. You could really feel it as you sipped. Good, the only thing I would knock it for is that it is high in alcohol so it would be very difficult to drink more then of these. Other then that, fantastic.

Overall this was everything I thought it would be. I super duper hopped double IPA from a great west coast brewery.

mikesgroove, May 14, 2011
Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -4.3%

ygtbsm94, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of jaydoc
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

jaydoc, Aug 31, 2013
Photo of womencantsail
3.43/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Bruery Provisions

A: The beer pours an orange-amber sort of color with a finger of khaki colored head.

S: Smells pretty dank and funky. I get some feet and armpit at the beginning, but it seems to subside. A decent amount of citrus comes through in the form of grapefruit and there's a good pine note. A fair amount of booze and some mild malt (bread).

T: The grapefruit and pine flavors are "large and in charge" here with a lot of big hop bitterness. Unfortunately, there is a strong alcohol flavor that brings a bit of a burn. Some toffee and toasted malt flavors provide the malt character.

M: The body is on the full side for a DIPA, and it's pretty heavy on the tongue. The carbonation is moderate.

D: A rare miss from Sierra Nevada. I would have liked a lot less booze and a lot more hop flavor here.

womencantsail, Feb 07, 2011
Photo of kylehay2004
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 version.

A: Very attractive beer. two finger head with decent lacing on a clear crimson with golden hues body. very good retention.

S: I was let down by the aroma. Its good but a little too weak for the major players in this genre. Nice sweet citrus aroma, mostly grapefruit and pineapple.

T: Ridiculously hoppy. The pine dominates this one and certainly lingers on the palate with a slight citrus note sneaking in and out. The malts are pretty much excluded from the flavor by this strong hop flavor and bitterness.

M: medium body and moderate to high carbonation.

Overall: The hop profile is good and improves as you drink it but the drinkability is affected by this. The malts may be there but good luck finding them. Certainly a memorable beer.

kylehay2004, Apr 20, 2012
Photo of Knapp85
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had heard about this coming out and I kept my eyes peeled for it at my local shop. They got a small shipment in so I grabbed 2 bottles right away.

I put one in the freezer to chill it faster right when I got home. The suspense was killing me! I poured As much as I could into a rather large glass to took a big nose full of it aroma. It smells fantastic! An incredible hoppy aroma just bursting out of the bottle and glass. So many hops on the tongue with every sip you take. It actually has a stinging sensation in the aftertaste. The color was very nice like a light copper shade. Such a great DIPA!

Knapp85, Mar 31, 2011
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.93/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Served up a clear, bright, bronze-plated body topped by an inch of white foam.

Smell: Initially, the nose isn't very aromatic at all, though, given some time to warm, it eventually comes around. After some minutes, you're given a sweet-scented aroma with a rather forward whiff of lemons. Lighter hop hints of meadow flowers and white pine.

Taste: Sweet-tasting pale maltiness with hints of almond sugar and wildflower honey. As it warms, a very faint basic breadiness develops in the taste and aroma. Pithy, citrusy lemon peel hop character with additional accents of flowers and resinous pine. Boldly bitter, though the sweetness does make a modest comeback late in the taste. Still, it does manage to finish both dry and bitterness. Lemony taste lingers into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium-light carbonation.

Drinkability: I dug it, though those who don't appreciate a notable malt presence and sweetness in their DIPA's might not care for this one.

ChainGangGuy, Mar 29, 2010
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Mellow in Greensboro.Poured into a goblet a slight chill hazed burnt orange tinged copper with a sticky one finger head that held for quite awhile.A mix of overripe tropical fruit and big pine resin in the nose,a whiff of sweet alcohol is there as well.Just like the aromas the big tropical fruit and pine resin really hits at the start,the alcohol plays much more of a role as the beer warms a little,the sweetness really comes on keeping the drinkiblity just a tad low.A beast of big hops and big sweet alcohol,tread lightly.

oberon, Jan 20, 2011
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 5,385 ratings.