Hercules Double IPA - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

1,531 Reviews
THE BROS
99
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,531
Hads: 3,869
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 242
Gots: 447 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: filabrazilia on 04-11-2004

HERCULES DOUBLE IPA is not for the faint of heart. It is, however, fit for the gods. HERCULES delivers a huge amount of hops from start to finish. Its hefty backbone of nutty, malty sweetness balances its aggressive hop profile. 85 IBUs.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,531 | Hads: 3,869
Photo of NittanyBeerFan
2.79/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Caramel amber in color, the pour yields a sticky head that produces some really solid lacing. Unfortunately, this is about where the highlights of this beer end.

The aroma and flavor are both incredibly disappointing, as sweet and cloying caramel malts dominate both the nose and the palate. It doesn't taste like an old IPA with faded hops, so I wonder if there ever were any hops in there to begin with. There is virtually no bitterness to balance the malt base. Luckily, the booze is subdued, otherwise, I wouldn't have been able to finish it. This is by far a better barleywine than it is a DIPA.

Just disappointing. I figured that out of a keg, the perennial disappointment of this beer would finally end, but it just didn't come together. I don't expect to buy this again. (781 characters)

Photo of Mattyb79
2.8/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Just recently started getting Great Divide here, so I was very excited to try this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle with a bottling date of 9/13/13.

A: Relatively clear, orange/amber liquid with about 1 finger head. Not bad looking, but nothing special either.

S: This is where it started to fall apart for me. I spent maybe 5 minutes trying to get a good feel for the aroma of this brew because it just seemed so off from what I expected. I get a very faint whiff of citrusy fruity hops and...almost nothing else. The only other aroma I could get off of it reminded me of piss. I hate saying that, but it was the first thing that came to mind every time I tried.

T: There was no redeeming quality here unfortunately. Bitter, piney hop taste followed by a huge caramel malt flavor. The bad part came in the finish which tasted like soap...not a little either, more like the flavor you would get from accidentally getting dishwashing liquid in your mouth.

M: Not a bad mouthfeel, but with all the bad flavors going on, I just wanted to swallow it quickly without thinking too much about it.

O: I cant believe this beer was as bad as it was. If this is what it is supposed to taste like, I have no idea how the ratings are so high. I'm going to try to track down a fresh bottle and re evaluate this, because what I drank doesn't seem like what everyone else is drinking...at least I really hope not. (1,403 characters)

Photo of shand
2.81/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a nonic.

Pours a red-amber color with two fingers of head that retains and laces well. The beer has very high clarity for the style. Aroma isn't blasting with hops, but instead well-balanced with hops, citrus, pepper and surprisingly nutty malts. The taste on this? Eh. This is a fairly fresh bottle, but the malts and alcohol really take front and center here, with a bit of a peppery kick. The hops are kicked to the background, giving this much more of a barelywine flavor. And not a great barleywine either. With only a month and a half of age on the bottle, this is a little silly.

The mouthfeel is nice enough, it's fairly full-bodied and a bit less carbonation than I'd like. The drinkability is a bit below average, I found this glass a bit of a slog. The high ABV isn't doing this brew any favors. A below-average DIPA that I'd struggle to recommend. (893 characters)

Photo of PatYoda
2.87/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Great appearance, tons of velvety lacing the whole way. That's about all I was impressed with with this beer though. Both smell and taste were pure hops. Boatloads of citrusy and piney hops. I tasted hardly any malt whatsoever, and very little alcohol. Mouthfeel was very harsh as well, not at all creamy like I look for in a double IPA. I could barely finish my pint. (368 characters)

Photo of cnybrewblog
2.87/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

This was poured out of a 22oz bottle.

Out of the bottle I was very impressed. There was an off white cream head that stuck around for a while. The color was a dark amber to copper tone.

The aroma was great! It had a complex malt-hop mix that was different than most DIPA's that are all hops aroma.

The taste was heavy and unimpressive. I most of the flavors melded together into an indistinguishable burn. I think there were some hints of pine, but they were all quickly erased by the harsh alcohol burn. Too much.

Mouth feel was thick and heavy. This drank like a stout and overstayed it's welcome on my tongue.

IMHO Great Divide pushes towards some great big beers, but needs to learn when to say when. I had a Saranac High Peaks side by side with this, both DIPA's and there was no comparing the two. One was thick heavy and a struggle to get down, the other smooth and full of character. I recommend the Saranac HP for anyone looking for a good DIPA.

*I need to disclose that I live in Syracuse (not far from Utica where Saranac is brewed) so I am always a little bias towards the home town brew. (1,120 characters)

Photo of ebin6
2.88/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Dark amber coloring with a decent head which hung around as expected

S - Funky, sweaty hop smell with fruity citrus finishing

T - Deep, throaty malt profile that stays on the lower half of the tongue. Different than most DIPAs I've had, not as hoppy as I expected

M - Unexpected action on the roof of the mouth considering the sub-par taste

D - Very drinkable considering the 10% ABV, though not something I'd have a substantial amount of (446 characters)

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
2.9/5  rDev -30%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - slightly dark orange beer. Thick creamy head like lather is very sticky, leaving a thin blanket of lace behind.

Aroma - frangrant - orangey, piny, some malt aroma fighting through the intense hop nose as well.

Taste - good malt presence. Sharp bitter hops, combined with a high alcohol level, make a hot and harsh impact on the palate. Feels raw and boozy, needs more taste and less hootch. Too medicinal, but getting in some of the bottom sediment from the bomber gives it a needed boost of sweetness. Completely stands up to some spicy tamales as expected. Letting it warm up helps balance-wise. The ups and downs kind of cancel each other out on this one, leaving me with an impression more of the downs.

Mouthfeel - nicely smooth and creamy, leaves a pleasant residual to help fight off that alcohol burn.

Drinkability - too mixed up for me to get into and enjoy. (892 characters)

Photo of suspect
2.91/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint Glass. Bottle date of June 16, 2011.

A: Beautiful amber color. Aggressive pour leads to a slowly building coppery tinted white head that measures in about 1.5 fingers high. Lots of sticky lacing up and down the glass.

S: Malt-forward in the nose, not a ton of hops. This thing is only 2 months old and already it feels like it's lost freshness. The alcohol is present for certain.

T: Follows the nose directly. Malt-forward, poorly balanced and pretty hot. Really disappointing flavor.

M: Hop bitterness is here and finally this is like the IIPA that I like but it's too little, too late.

O: A solid disappointment but I'm chalking this one up to lack of freshness. I'll revisit with a bottle that's as fresh as possible. (785 characters)

Photo of Arbitrator
2.91/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Chilled 12oz into a glass. Purchased from K&L in Redwood City. Great Divide just came to CA this month, so I bought the bottle expecting it to be fresh. I got home and realized it was bottled on Aug. 29, 2010 -- a couple of months old.

Not optimal, but it's the freshest I've had this beer. I got two bottles in a trade that were 8-9 months old; I bought a bottle online that was 3+ months old, and when I saw it on the shelves in Portland, the bottles were 3-4 months old. I think this beer simply doesn't exist fresh.

A: Pours a deep, cloudy amber color with 2 fingers of off-white head. Retention is moderate, but there is a collar on the drink and a light film on top of the brew when all is said and done. Some lacing as well.

S: Like a barleywine. Caramel, biscuit, peaches, grass, herbs, and pine. The hops are present, and they impart some pine notes.

T: A strong, rich, malty backbone. Caramel, biscuit, and peaches give it a very strongly sweet character with a light hint of bitterness. There's a small candied grapefruit flavor going on, with touches of grass, herb, and pine. I think fresh, this would be a monster of a beer. Right now it's just satisfactory. It reminds me of Drake's Denogginizer, but not as good. The finish is fairly clean, but it has a sweet aftertaste.

M: Medium-to-full bodied, but it carries medium-to-high carbonation that prevents the beer from becoming syrupy despite its sweetness. Well masked ABV as well.

D: I found it fairly decent, but as is my complaint with all DIPAs: if you can't match what I can get in this state, you're not going to get me to buy it again. (1,620 characters)

Photo of tewaris
2.93/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hercules Double IPA
Great Divide Brewing Company
Imperial IPA
10% ABV
OG?
IBUs?
12 oz bottle, bottled August 05, 2010 poured into a Bell's tulip on September 18, 2010.

Appearance 4.5/5
Clear, orange red, with an off white head and medium head retention. Some sticky lacing. Looks almost oily! The head and lacing were sub par but so was my pour so I am going to give it benefit of doubt.

Aroma 4/5
Nice hop aroma in the nose: tropical fruit, mango to be precise; grassy-piney as well. Some malty sweetness is present but it's hard to pinpoint it... perhaps caramel?

Taste 2/5
Fruity to begin. Malts and hops play well together towards that. That's the only good part of the taste. Some medium bitterness is the middle. Malts don't hold up until the end. For a DIPA, no hops in here, no malts either. Warming. Dry finish. The taste is average. The aftertaste is just bad.

Mouthfeel 3/5
Thin. Not cloying. The slight warming is welcome. Carbonation is medium.

Drinkability 3/5
Goes down easy but the body cannot support the alcohol and the aftertaste is just bad.

Other
Disappointing, and I cannot blame it on the bottle because the aroma was good. Somehow this reminds me of an adjunct lager at the end. (1,208 characters)

Photo of mactrail
2.98/5  rDev -28%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark coppery amber in the Leffe tulip. Moderately sudsy with pleasing carbonation in the mouth. It's hard to get a read on the smell, which is more medicinal than beery. Hugely hopped, and leaves a woody, astringent taste on the tongue. Kind of a candy flavor, a Sugar Daddy dipped in quinine. That sweet and bitter combo is not too pleasing after a few sips. This one will have to go into stud service, goosing the hops on some less well-endowed ales.

This is my least favorite offering from this brewery, and I'm a big Great Divide fan. My favorite Colorado brewery, in fact. Label says bottled on Oct. 18, 2011. (615 characters)

Photo of granite
2.98/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle into a pint glass.

A--- Poured a brilliant copper color with a large fluffy white head.

S--- Caramel malt, pine and grapefruit from the aromatic hops make up the aroma. It was very pleasant smelling.

T--- It started off cloying with an herbal astringency and harsh bitterness. Warming alcohol and a salty aftertaste soon followed. It was not very pleasant tasting.

M--- Medium to full bodied with an appropriate level of carbonation for the style.

D--- It looked so promising and polished. The aroma was the perfect balance of malt and hops. Not all hop forward like a lot of DIPAs. Unfortunately it was to cloying and salty. Better attenuation and water chemistry would make it a lot more drinkable. (728 characters)

Photo of chicagobeerriot
2.98/5  rDev -28%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours light copper with a thick head that gradually provides very attractive lacing down the side of the glass. On the nose, this beer puts its sweet side forward: some butterscotch, honey, and a bit of breadiness with citrus and floral notes playing a supporting role. Mouthfeel is too thick, bordering on full-bodied, with only some mild carbonation preventing this from being a beershake. The taste leads with a one-note caramel sweetness that lingers until the beer falls apart at the finish. The finish is too alcoholic for my tastes which provides an acidity that unpleasantly combines with the intensely bitter hop coda. I love a DIPA bomb as much as the next guy, but this is bad combo that's so strong it stays on the palate until you're halfway through your next beer. I'm going to revisit this beer in case I got a bad bottle, but my first impression is that this beer is a bit unbalanced and the finish is a plain 'ol mess. (935 characters)

Photo of BarrytheBear
3/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Me and ShakeyHands splittin a bomber

Looks like a beer

Smells like candied pineapples from a trail mix bag

What's going on here? Very off balance, deisel, and fairly unpleasant. Past experiences with this beer not confirmed. Hops drowned out in a bitter, murky mess.

Either I'm not myself, or this beer's a bummer. (318 characters)

Photo of benito
3/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Lots of head and some lacing, colored nectarine and sienna with little carbonation. The head hangs on and on and on.

Even before I really start sniffing, I get whiffs of a huge floral nose, especially strong grapefruit scents and hints of cream.

Down the hatch. In one word, it's hoppy, specially in the aftertaste
The floral scents don't carry through onto the palate...it's more
bitter and less sweet. In general, there isn't much to match the
hops. Liquid hops in the mouth with trace maltiness.

For true hop heads this would be heaven. For me it's a little too
unbalanced. The 'herculean' hop isn't a joke.

Overall, this has a full, strong body in the mouth and reasonable
drinkability for something this strong.

I'd recommend this to only the most diehard hopheads. (791 characters)

Photo of match1112
3.01/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

clear deep copper body with two fingers of thick sudsy off white head, decent retention and lacing. smell is mainly caramel malts and pine hops, little citrus in the background. taste is more malt than hops, still tastes plenty piney, which i dont like. wish it were more citrus forward. has a medium body oily mouthfeel with decent carbonation and a long dry bitter pine flavored finish. this is a pretty standard dipa by many standards and falls short for me because i dont like drinking a christmas tree, prefear citrus forward ipas. (536 characters)

Photo of rightbrained
3.01/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I really wanted to like this. I like Great Divide, especially the Yeti and Fresh Hop. This one fell short for me.

A: Nice amber color and a bit murky, not much of a head. Looked appealing.

S: Smells like potato chips. You heard me. Potato chips. Did I get a bad bottle? Dunno, but I wasn't that impressed with the smell here. Sorry guys. My wife left me to the bottle (not that I was complaining @ ~10% ABV)

T: Not too bad, but not great. I was expecting more, but I'm not a fan of IPA's that taste like grain more than hops. I like hops if I'm drinking an IPA (double or not), and I didn't get them here. Reminded me a bit of the Great Divide Pale Ale I had on tap in Denver (not what I expected from a Pale, either. In fact the GD guys admitted that most people are expecting different taste based on the name). I think Hercules is just as misleading.

Maybe I didn't know what to expect from a "double IPA", but what I do know is that this is not what I expected, and not what I would get again when other choices are available.

M: Maybe a little more viscous than your typical ale. Again, not blown away.

O: Ah GD, how I love thee, but this just fell short. Especially at this price point. I know you call hoppy IPA's "west coast" IPA's, but if that's what people come to expect (as you admit yourself), then don't feel bad when our expectations fall short of your claims. (1,382 characters)

Photo of sleazo
3.05/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A-Pours a clear amber with a three fingered head. Dissipates down to a nice frothy cap and lacing is everywhere.

S-Biscuity pine cones. Very fragrant.

T-Very strong on the hop character with a biscuity dry malt character. Hops are strong with the pine. Not exactly what I would call well balanced. The alcohol is very evident as well. You really taste the burn on the follow through.

M-Slightly thin and low on the carbonation

D-I am not digging this. Completely one sided with a strong alcohol flaw. It is harsh and I woudl say over rated (543 characters)

Photo of HopEnthusiast
3.06/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This brew pours a deep amber with a thick, caramel colored head. Good lacing down the side of my tulip glass as the beer is consumed. Has the smell of a strong and sweet floral hop and malt smells are very apparent, very nice. The taste has a great deal of roasted malts, almost to the point where it's sweet and bready. This pays a solid compliment to the very apparent floral hop blend presence - nicely balance bitter and sweetness. The mouthfeel was medium to full-bodied, slightly bitter, as there is a strong aftertaste to each sip. (538 characters)

Photo of harrymel
3.06/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottled date not on the label in typical locale.

A: Orange-copper ale with less than a finger of creamy head which falls in a moment to a sheet of the same. spotty lacing. Excellent clarity.

S: Sweet and nutty malts with nice earthy and citrus hops. Hints of toffee. Decent.

T: Sweetness of malts are countered with substantial hop bitterness. Fairly one-dimensional as a beer. Some hints of resin and maybe even a touch of mint?

M: Medium body with low carbonation. Silken feel. Dry finish.

O: Beer is good, easily drinakble for 10%ABV. The bottle date would have been nice, and likely would help me out on the judgment of the beer, but such as it is - face value. Not likely to buy again. (695 characters)

Photo of BeerRun13
3.06/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear amber. Huge creamy off white head, and some okay lace.
Faint citrussy and piny hop aroma.
Toasty and bitter flavor. Very bitter citrussy flavor.
Creamy and nice mouthfeel, but the bitterness detracts a bit.
Decent beer, but far from my favorite DIPA. (260 characters)

Photo of ATPete
3.08/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle

My second attempt at liking this beer, my second time failing.

It pours a very murky orange color with a small, very sticky white head, lots of large floaties. Big grapefruit and spicy citrusy hops, some alcohol on the nose as well as a sweet malt presence. The beer attacks first with a short, but bright burst of resiny hops, followed by a very muddy and sweet malt profile, wood notes and lots of armpit funk, chewy and syrupy body, the combination of its thick body and chunky appearance doesnt sit well with the subconscious, theres better options for the style, way better. Two bad bottles? i hope not... (626 characters)

Photo of dgallina
3.09/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours orange-red with a foamy white head. Leaves filmy lace on the glass long after the beer is gone. Smells quite hoppy, with a bit of grainy malt firmly in the background. Flavor is strongly hoppy. Plenty of north-american hops and *very* little else going on here. Just hops from start to finish. Medium-bodied and highly carbonated in the mouth.

Kind of boring and simplistic in my opinion. Tons of hops. That's all folks. (429 characters)

Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
3.09/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served at about 36F from a 12 oz amber bottle.

Poured thickly with a modest head leaving a very nice sheet of lacing on the sides. Looks dark amber and cloudy, can't see through it. Floaty bits there too.

Aroma is balanced with hops and malt.

First taste is a wallop of flavor, rich maltiness, strong bitterness, with a very sweet finish, followed by lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel is interesting, very distinctly different flavors and feel on different parts of the tongue, variously sweet, creamy, bitter, astringent, effervescent.

The beer is drinkable, but this is a strong beer and it would be hard to go through bottle after bottle. Plus, as it warms it loses its balance, and flavor seems to get a bit vegetative. I won't bother buying it again. (768 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.11/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Eureka!Burger Claremont

A: The pour is a clear amber color with a creamy off-white head.

S: Definitely on the sweet side for an IPA with lots of caramel and toffee aromas. There's a mild citrus hop aroma along with a fair amount of pineapple. Some other sweet fruits also make an appearance.

T: Like the aroma, the flavor is also quite sweet. Plenty of brown sugar, caramel, and toffee are prsent. There is a fairly mild hop character and very little bitterness. Minimal citrus and fruit flavors wth a bit of grass and alcohol.

M: The body is medium to full with medium carbonation.

O: Overly sweet and not all that hoppy. That's not a combination I look for in an IPA. (684 characters)

Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,531 ratings.