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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.

5,613 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,613
Reviews: 1,349
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.48%
Wants: 335
Gots: 726 | 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: 5,613 | Reviews: 1,349
Photo of smerrell
4.61/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a terriffic beer. Where the aroma is lacking, the taste makes up. Piney and resinous, this beer coats your tongue. You feel the alcohol rather than taste it (and you do feel it before you are done with the bottle). This is a beer that I will happily go back for more. Well done SN!

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

Poured from a fresh bottle into a snifter glass. 2012 version of the beer. Let me preface this by saying I tried this last year and was totally unimpressed...but not this year.

A: A medium golden color with some hints of orange, lighter than I expected. Glass lacing is full and sticky. Pour yields a nice fluffy white head.

S: The hops jump out with massive citrus notes. Some floral and slight pine is mixed in. There is a huge caramel malt sweetness that allows the alcohol to be picked up. You just want to keep smelling this beer, thanks to the massive dry hopping.

T: I got sweet fruit first with grapefruit, orange, candied pineapple and some lemon from the just massive amount of hops used. The sweet fruit is mixed with some caramel sweetness that sticks until the very end where some pine and floral flavors kick in to produce some bitterness and a (surprise) dry finish. Dry for a 10.4% DIPA? Yup. Some alcohol pokes at the end but it is very welcomed.

M: Full, coating, prickly but dry to the finish. Alcohol is felt.

O: Not a super complex overly thought out DIPA, but a very enjoyable one that is surprisingly drinkable for the abv. Quality beer for sure, I am now impressed.

Ok, I had this beer last year and was totally unimpressed and thought it was a sweet mess. I'm glad I did not review it last year and saved the review for this year. I am now officially impressed and enjoyed the hell out of it. Bang for the buck on this beer? Crazy good at +- $50 for the case. I will drink these over the next few months and enjoy the hell out of them, I almost drank a six pack already. Lovin it. Great work SN.

Photo of bmur112
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of jwat
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of RobertColianni
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%

Photo of cwxc818
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of Pat316
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of brealbg
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of Kips
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

Photo of deapokid
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of PoppaK
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of Darles_Chickens
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of closisinthehouse
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

Photo of tizride
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of jtmartino
4.68/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Grape and Grain, San Mateo, CA. Poured into a snifter.

Beautiful vibrant orange color. Two fingers of head that cling to the sides of the glass.

Smell is huge. Big floral, citrus, and boozy malt.

Taste follows the smell. A very mild sweet malty base...you can really taste the alcohol. A boozy, bitter, fruity, and citrusy hop profile round out this beer. Surprisingly balanced for the sheer size of this beer.

Mouthfeel is thick and chewy for a DIPA. Heat from the high alcohol level, but excellent carbonation leaves a creamy feel. Really really nice.

All in all this is an excellent beer. One of the boldest West Coast DIPAs out there...reminds me a bit of Pliny the Younger in its color, flavor profile and mouthfeel. An excellent beer overall.


Photo of JeffTheJuice
5/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of chodinheaven
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautifully clear amber orange beer with a steady stream of bubbles feeding an ivory head that sticks around forever. Sticky lacing as it slowly disapates. Fresh and florally hoppy notes with lots of citrus and bit of pine on the nose. Nice breadiness backing it. Not incredibly aromatic, but definitely a very pleasant aroma.

Well this one packs a punch on the taste buds. Between the incredible amount of hops and the prickle of the alcohol, its almost overwhelming. I say almost because it has an element of malt that manages to provide just the right amount of balance with a slight breadiness and a hint of caramel, letting the hops flourish. The hops are piney with a ton of grapefruit, maybe even a bit catty. Lots of pleasant bitterness but so much flavor that the bitterness can't run away with it. Again, the malts provide just enough to counteract the bitterness without compromising the flavor of these hops at all. Surprisingly not a whole lot of resin, definitely a smidge but in the end it remains pretty clean and crisp. There is a pretty sizeable alcohol feel to it, but its not cloying at all, matched by the sharpness of the bitterness. The mouthfeel is prickly in the middle but smooths out into the finish, providing a long, dry and warm finish. Just a touch of a juicy burst in the end that evens it all out. The aftertaste lingers for a bit but is almost all grapefruity hop flavor and a lot less bitterness than expected.

Don't get me wrong; this beer is bitter as hell. But the flavors that stem from this bitterness more than match it, leading to a complex and enjoyably refreshing sipper of a DIPA. Definitely recommended if you are a hop head.

Photo of volta
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of Jamstone714
3.5/5  rDev -16.3%

Photo of luvbier
4/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of jar2574
3.82/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a nice 1.5 inch head that stays for awhile, over orange-yellow beer with low level of carbonation.

Smells nice and hoppy, with both citrus and pine hops. A 7 out of 10 on the strength scale, but less overwhelming than some other double IPAs.

Taste is hop forward but not hop dominated. There are some sweet malts that balance it out, so the hops don't kick you in the teeth.

High ABV. On the 2nd one, you can feel it hit you. Pretty well disguised though, so quite drinkable.

There are better double IPAs. This one is just fine, but not a stand out.

Photo of Kevin79
4.75/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

huge huge ibu count on this baby, must be. pours a gloriously rich caramel color with one hell of a lively head, off white and lasting. smells like weed, straight up. this is an indica heavy hybrid with unreal potency. citrusy hops and some english smelling malts. flavor is bitter up front, and bitter in the back, with some nice malty sweetness in between. some pine elements and a very drinkable medium body on her. fair carbonation, maybe a touch low for this beer, but it seems to go down pretty easy for the alcohol content and bitterness. sierra nevada is the king of the hop as far as i am concerned, and this is just another wonderful illustration of what hops can be. superbly made beer.

Photo of justintcoons
3.68/5  rDev -12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a crystal clear gold with 2 fingers of head that dissipates slowly. Moderate carbonation and excellent lacing. Wouldn't expect anything less from SN.

N: Big bursts of orange citrus, lemon zest and resinous pine. Lighter notes of tropical fruits and caramel drizzle.

T: Explosively hoppy and bitter. Lemon zest, pine needles and orange rind are upfront. Grapefruit comes in mid-palate along with only a drop of caramel rendering the malt useless. Finishes just as it started with rinds and pines. Some vicious florals come into play as well.

M: Medium-full bodied. Excessively bitter and dry.

O: This is a little over the top for my tastes. There's hardly any noticeable malt while the hops are out of control. Insanely hoppy losing a lot of nuances due bitterness. If you're looking for a punch in the face of hoppy bitterness, here it is.

Photo of bodymarks
4.75/5  rDev +13.6%

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Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 5,613 ratings.