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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.

5,182 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,182
Reviews: 1,310
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.48%
Wants: 254
Gots: 527 | 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:
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
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Ratings: 5,182 | Reviews: 1,310 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DelicateDelirium


4.75/5  rDev +13.6%

03-26-2012 17:43:34 | More by DelicateDelirium
Photo of IPx


5/5  rDev +19.6%

03-26-2012 16:12:07 | More by IPx
Photo of punkhim


4.5/5  rDev +7.7%

03-26-2012 05:32:39 | More by punkhim
Photo of Heavenisbeer


3.9/5  rDev -6.7%

A: Watered-down marmalade champagne, with a 2 finger retained bleach-white head. Icky-sticky-slicky lacing.

S: Huge, walloping pine hops.

T: Like the nose, but with a sweet and tart backbone. Loads of tropical fruits (pineapple, gf, starfruit, orange zest) and candied hops. Has a vodka-like boozy finish which is slightly offputting, but I can live with it.

M: Oily and biting, with a pungent dry linger.

03-26-2012 04:16:02 | More by Heavenisbeer
Photo of mscudder


4.08/5  rDev -2.4%

A - Golden amber with a nice thick white head. Lacing was evident after the beer settled.

S - Hops and grapefruit. Some notes of citrus and pine, fairly standard for a good IPA.

T - As expected, this one is packed with hops. The carbonation compliments the bitterness nicely. There is also a nice caramel malt behind this making it quite unique. The ABV is well hidden and I must say this is spectacular.

M - Medium body with a taste that is almost oily, although I use this word with modest hesitation.

O - Overall this is another hit from Sierra Nevada. If I could request improvement in any area, I would request a bit less oily mouthfeel, perhaps a tad more robust. That said, anyone who enjoys a good DIPA should not be disappointing this one.

03-26-2012 04:04:32 | More by mscudder
Photo of ortie


4/5  rDev -4.3%

03-26-2012 03:12:43 | More by ortie
Photo of nitro0292

New York

4/5  rDev -4.3%

Nice clear golden color with an almost 2 finger head that lingers for long time. Plenty of stick down the side of the glass.

Smell is classic SN, with some malty sweetness to balance. 60/40 ratio of hops to malt. SN claims the aroma hops are Simcoe and a "proprietary variety." Smells like grapefruit covered in pine needles and malt. Appetizing.

Taste is malty up front, with solid bitterness on the back of the tongue and a bitter finish and aftertaste. Very dry with very little residual sugars. Leaves you parched.

Mouthfeel is a bit on the heavy side, and with light carbonation. Mouthfeel is expected given the ABV, but it could be a touch lighter. Viscosity helps hide the alcohol.

Overall this is a good DIPA. Not a complete hop bomb as there is malt to balance the flavor, but it is very bitter. Only criticism is that I would like the hops to contribute more than bitterness. More hop flavor may be achievable by dialing back the malt a bit; particularly the Munich malt, which can be rather sweet.

03-26-2012 02:47:03 | More by nitro0292
Photo of cssosprey


4/5  rDev -4.3%

03-26-2012 02:21:01 | More by cssosprey
Photo of BrianOhio


4.35/5  rDev +4.1%

Pour is a clear amber, thick 2 finger head that lingers pretty well.

Aroma is classic west coast DIPA, juicy pineapple and mango, apple, with mild grassy notes.

Taste again is juicy citrus, thick, syrupy mouthfeel. Well balanced, with some sweet notes of toffee and butterscotch. The finishing bite you expect in an IPA is more subtle, much like that of a Hopslam. Warm and boozy. Delicious.

As someone who tends to set the DIPA bar at Hopslam, this beer is damned close. This is as excited as I've been about a new beer in a long time. Close to perfect for my taste.

03-26-2012 00:33:29 | More by BrianOhio
Photo of Nate


4/5  rDev -4.3%

03-25-2012 23:12:18 | More by Nate
Photo of PeterIngemi


3.53/5  rDev -15.6%

Poured a 12oz bottle into a duvel snifter

A: pours a clear golden amber with a little less then a finger of off white head, nice lacing

S: smells like hops and caramel, bitter earhty resinous pine, over a nice malt backbone ... A nice smelling beer.

T: bitter. Grassy hops develops into bitter pine, heavy sweet malt and even heavier bitterness on the finish, a few hints of fruit in there, grapefruit... Not very well balanced, resinous

M: medium to heavy in body, chewy and oily, coats the mouth with a looong lasting bitter pine resins, medium carbonation, but not enough to keep this beer from feeling super oily

O: far from my favorite dipa, kinda just a bitter bomb IMO, not very well rounded, and the aftertaste is a killer, I'm sure other people like this brew from people I've spoken with and the high rating.... But this is deffinatly not for me.... I'll stick with my double trouble and green flash palate wrecker.

03-25-2012 22:40:43 | More by PeterIngemi
Photo of RunForYourBeer


3.9/5  rDev -6.7%

A: Pours golden orange with a thin white head and visible carbonation.

S: Lots of hops. Grapefruit, citrus, pine and grass stick out.

T: Follows the smell. Starts with citrus and grapefruit hops that lead to piney and grassy hops and some light caramel/bread malt. The finish and aftertaste are of hops with a hint of alcohol warming.

M: Medium and a bit oily with proper carbonation.

O: Very good.

03-25-2012 22:29:35 | More by RunForYourBeer
Photo of bound4er


4.13/5  rDev -1.2%

A. Golden copper appearance with a three finger off white head. Leaves a boatload of lacing. Nice looking beer.

S. Pine, citrus and hop oil goodness. The smell gives you a pretty good indication of what this is going to taste like.

T. Plenty of pine, citrus and hop oil flavors. There's just enough grainy malt to keep this from being completely unbalanced.

M. Medium bodied with a slick, somewhat oily mouthfeel.

O. This has been my favorite SN beer to date. It is a hop bruiser but manages to just steer clear of that searing bitterness of most other hoppy SN brews. It is really easy to drink for a 10.4% ABV beer. Overall, this is well crafted stuff.

03-25-2012 22:10:38 | More by bound4er
Photo of atone315


4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

03-25-2012 20:12:37 | More by atone315
Photo of b3shine


4/5  rDev -4.3%

Bottle to snifter. Looks good; deep burnt-orange with nice lacing. Smells good too; nice and hoppy. Tastes solid. It's hoppy without being too heavy. Mouthfeel was nice as well. Overall, a very good brew, and my favorite I've tried from Sierra Nevada.

03-25-2012 19:24:50 | More by b3shine
Photo of jvillefan


4.03/5  rDev -3.6%

A: A beautiful golden yellow with a two finger head that dissipates a little too quickly.

S: It has a nice mild (a little too mild) hopy aroma with subtle caramel tones to it.

T: Bitter, that's about it.

M: A little grainy. The beer has sub-par carbonation and excellent retention.

O: Not a session beer, but if you like intense hops to the point that it is the only thing you can taste then this is worth a try.

03-25-2012 18:37:18 | More by jvillefan
Photo of DrewV

New York

3.53/5  rDev -15.6%

Whoa, Nelly! This is a boozy hop-bomb. Bitter as all get-out, but tasty enough if you can get past the heat.

I love a good DIPA, but this one's a bit one-dimensional. Needs a bit more body and maybe a bit more flavor from the hops to offset the bitterness. This one just leaves me wanting more.

03-25-2012 18:08:03 | More by DrewV
Photo of sabitu


4.25/5  rDev +1.7%

03-25-2012 17:13:50 | More by sabitu
Photo of secondtooth


3.98/5  rDev -4.8%

Attractive amber, with substantial head. Serious 3-fingers of lace.

Aroma is, of course, deeply hopped. I can sense the citrus-pine burn almost, just in the nose. Superb!

This is a heavy-bodied and sticky hop-bomb. It's a bold assault on the palate, nicely malted, but definitely with a surplus of citrus-pine hop wonderfulness. A treat, but one to enjoy in moderation. Tasty!

03-25-2012 14:24:30 | More by secondtooth
Photo of shelby415


4/5  rDev -4.3%

03-25-2012 06:39:35 | More by shelby415
Photo of halo913


3.75/5  rDev -10.3%

03-25-2012 04:08:36 | More by halo913
Photo of SortaAmbivalent


5/5  rDev +19.6%

03-25-2012 00:28:51 | More by SortaAmbivalent
Photo of Jim_DemonDeacon

2.5/5  rDev -40.2%

03-25-2012 00:17:19 | More by Jim_DemonDeacon
Photo of nrs207


3.8/5  rDev -9.1%

A - Pours with a 2 finger off white pillowy head. Golden orange and hazy. Leaves a nice amount of lacing, and the head was slow to dissipate.

S - Not really getting a lot of hop smell. What I do get is a strong grapefruit and resinous smell. Maybe a sharp citrus mixed with alcohol. It's a sharp smell on the nostrils, probably the alcohol.

T - I get more alcohol than I'd like, but it does have the usual west coast hop profile. It's got some citrus and bitterness. It's above average, but the alcohol might be masking some extra flavors for me.

M - Even with the alcohol flavor, the beer is still quite drinkable and it's nice and smooth with a gentle carbonation that is right for the style.

O - I'm glad I only bought one of these. I wouldn't seek this out for the price I paid. One of my least favorite SN offerings. I'll stick with Bigfoot and Torpedo over this. Even though Bigfoot has a good amount of alcohol presence while fresh, it doesn't intrude as much. Definitely feel the alcohol effects on this one by the time you're trough. Try it once, see if the alcohol is a little much for you. If it's not, it may be a delicious DIPA for you.

03-24-2012 22:06:59 | More by nrs207
Photo of CloudStrife

New York

4.18/5  rDev 0%

12 oz bottle poured into goblet. 2012 Hoptimum

A: Pours a clear golden amber with a 1 thick finger white head. Bubbles visible rising toward the surface. Head dissipates to some fisheyes and film within a few minutes.

S: Fresh smell of skunky piney hop. Sweet malt gives it a nectar-like aroma. Alcohol isnt to noticeable. Little earthy with a resiny wood like quality.

T: Hits you with some hop right off the bat, smooth and subdued by the sweet malt it creeps up to a lingering mouth full of hop. The flavor stays in your mouth a while between sips.

M: Encroaching on the thick end of Imperial IPA's. Alcohol isnt over bearing and is certainly warming. Pretty low carbonation.

Overall I am glad to see Sierra Nevada pushing the envelope, dabbling in more extreme beers and creating their own hop varieties. 2014 update: Bumping this up a bit with how well it ages.

03-24-2012 20:58:21 | More by CloudStrife
Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 5,182 ratings.