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Hercules Double IPA - Great Divide Brewing Company

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Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA

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3,678 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,678
Reviews: 1,517
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 11.41%
Wants: 202
Gots: 310 | FT: 5
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.
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Ratings: 3,678 | Reviews: 1,517 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beagle75
2.71/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Draft pour into a half-pint goblet at Whole Foods in Tustin.

A: Clear, light amber color with one finger of off-white foam head. Moderate lacing remains on the glass. Bubbles are visible rising in loose streams from the bottom and sides of the glass.

S: Toasted bread, earth, and dark vinous fruit constitute the bulk of this beer's smell. Occasional whiffs of pine foliage, caramel, and fusile alcohols break through (the latter dissipating after a few minutes).

T: Begins sweet, with intense pale and caramel malts soon joined by dark, treacly citrus hop aromatics. The middle remains hoppy, but some astringency and cloying soapiness also emerge. The finish dries out somewhat, with moderate bitterness and grapefruit peel lingering. The flavor of pure alcohol never really stands alone, although it may play a part in creating some of the less desirable qualities found here.

M: Medium viscosity, syrupy on the palate, with moderate carbonation whose presence is felt too noticeably.

D: This DIPA has a lot going on, but some of its sensory qualities are problematic. Flavor-wise it is big but not satisfying--the kind of strong ale that fatigues the palate almost after a single sip. In its defense, it probably pairs with savory food better than some other more noteworthy examples of the style. Within its style Hercules treads near to the barleywine border, cultivating dark flavors over bright--it will not be mistaken for a West coast IPA. It is similar in this sense to Ninkasi Tricerahops or Avery Maharaja, although both are superior efforts to this.

Photo of TexIndy
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 650ml bottle into a tulip glass. Bottled on date on 10/19/10. Been trying to get fresher but that's about the best I can seem to do here in Dallas. Was a slightly hazy copper color. Great carb streams from the etching. It had a large fluffy white head that slowly settled into a thick collar and thin foam cap. Great slow sliding lace with good amount sticking.

The aroma was awesome. Great mix of pine, grapefruit and orange, and caramel malt. You can smell the underlying bitterness but it's tempered by the malt. The taste is also excellent with a citric hop that builds to a piney bitter finish that is balanced throughout with the caramel malt. This one has a good dose of bitter but the malt balances well so it's never too much. There is a delayed heavy bitter very late in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is full and creamy. Good carb levels.

Overall, an excellent ADIPA. It's been a few years since I had it as I have been waiting to get something near fresh. Glad I finally found one close enough. I remember last time I had it thinking that it was too bitter but my palate has really changed over the past 18 months so this one is now right in my sweet spot when I want a bitter bite. Highly recommend. Avail here in TX. Rotation - now that I've tried it again, it will be in heavy rotation while fresh. [H;Y]

Photo of csiewert
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a orange amber color with small head that retains very well. Unfortunately it was poured to me in a just cleaned glass and ruined the aroma. The taste has a generous hop note with a good balance of malty sweetness. The mouthfeel is the biggest detractor with me feeling like I need to continuously lick the roof of my mouth. Overall I think you should definitely try it.

Photo of ebin6
2.88/5  rDev -30.1%
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

Photo of Chadpaq
4.6/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at The Pizza Peel. Let me just say: This local establishment has stepped their game up, big-time.

Fairly big head. The beer itself resembles some sort of crystalline-amber color that's allowing minimal amounts of light to penetrate. One of the prettier DIPAs I've seen. The head's very resilient, and hardly wants to recede at all! I can't tell if that's a good thing or not. I'm getting a little impatient. I'll settle for a frothy mustache I suppose...

I can hardly take a full inhalation of this beer, it's so darn floral. That's a good thing, don't worry. I'm nearly knocked back in my booth from all of the hops entering my nasal cavity. Let's taste her already!

Oh yeah. Just as I expected. A nearly-perfect balance of hops to carbonation, with only minimal malty traces, something that is crucial for me. Granted, this is a double, but the malt is still very discreet. At 10%abv, I have no idea how Great Divide pulled it off...then again, this is why they're one of the big guns in the microbrew industry.

I could literally session this stuff. I think this is the best Double IPA I have ever had. I haven't had Pliny, but man, I feel like this could give it a run for its money. Props to The Pizza Peel for keeping this baby on tap!

Photo of SurlyMe
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Golden honey color, thin white head with not much lacing, lightly carbonated

S - Bright citrus notes, sweet, very hoppy

T - Sweet citrus hoppiness up front with a caramel/butter toffee finish

M - Perfect smooth feel, just the right amount of carbonation, not too resinous like many DIPAs, hop and caramel/nut tastes linger in the mouth nicely.

D - Extremely drinkable which was surprising for 10% alc. the lingering taste makes you want to sip more and more.

Overall, a very well rounded DIPA, nothing was too over the top.

Photo of soze47
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm glad to find a one month old entry from Great Divide in Greater Boston. Some of their other hoppy offerings were almost a year old! I poured this 12 oz. single into a nice giant wine glass.

Appearance: Pure copper in color. Nice lacing on the glass as I drink. The remarkable aspect of the look is the pure, clear shades of amber in the glass at different points of thickness.

Aroma: Pine and citrus jump out first, but, as with a lot of DIPAs, there is a good amount of caramel/biscuity smells to balance things out. After a few drinks, the meld of hops and malt create an almost spicy scent as alcohol heat kicks in.

Taste: Nice variety of hop flavors initially that eventually finish with a nice, not too over-the-top bitterness. The same notes from the nose are here, but a nice addition floral flavors also enter the picture. Malt provides adequate sweetness, but nothing that gets in the way of the main attraction of hops. Finishes with a pronounced, but not to sharp bitterness.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: As medium-bodied as they come. Carbonation goes almost undetected with the exception that it keeps the body slick in the mouth. For a 10% DIPA, this one is rather drinkable. Be warned.

Overall: This is a very solid beer. It may not make my all-time greatest hits of the style, but there is nothing GD could do to improve what they were going for in this beer. It presents a great variety of hoppy flavors, keeps hop flavors and bitterness in good balance, and presents a great complementary malt that knows it is just a back-up singer in this band.

Photo of Dieffenbach
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber

A: Slow pour yields a small white head that diminishes quickly. Clear body amber/orange color. If only the poor lacing were better...

S: More malts than expected; arguably fewer hops. What I could detect was a doughy-apple scent; couldn't pick up on the pine aroma mentioned by other reviewers.

T: Average duration, moderate sweetness, moderate acidity and light bitterness.

M: Medium body, sticky-thin palate with soft carbonations.

D: Easiest drinking IIPA I have ever tasted. Hard to believe it qualifies as this style of beer. 10% ABV goes unnoticed...until a few minutes following consumption. Another solid beer from Great Divide.

Photo of scottfrie
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle into Gulden Draak tulip. Big thanks to jbck109 for the bottle.

A: Pours honey-amber with a billowing off-white head that took forever to recede into a bubbly, oily film that left very sticky chunks of lacing down the glass.
S: Notes of sweet tropical fruits, pine, and caramel malt.
T: Big notes of citrus and tropical fruits, grapefruit, nutty bread crust malt and a touch of caramel. Extremely balanced. Aftertaste is clean and bitter with a faint hint of tobacco.
M: No trace of alcohol. Very clean medium body without much stickiness or viscosity to the mouthfeel.
D: Extremely easy to drink DIPA. Clean and flavorful with a pretty good dose of bitterness to make things interesting. Another great beer from a great brewery. Another great trade from a great BA. Thanks again Jay.

Photo of bens0n
4.14/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This brew pours a murky amber color with a very minimal amount of white head that dissipates fairly quickly, not much lacing going on either.

Surprisingly enough the hops are not overpowering when you take a good whiff, it has a subtle and sweet smell to it with some malty undertones.

There is a bite of hops at the start, and at the finish, but in the middle there are some smooth malty flavors that come out with a tiny bit of citrusy sweetness. The hops stay with you after every sip though, very strong in the aftertaste.

I would say it has just the right amount or carbonation and viscosity to be enjoyable and satisfying, overall a good beer, exceeded my expectations.

Photo of nezelrac
4.38/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving type - on tap, then I brought home a growler, review based primarily from draft observations supplemented with growler notes

A - Served/poured into a regular ol' pint glass. Orange tinged amber with a near 2 finger white creamy head. Good retention and decent lacing.

S - Caramel and sweet malts surround lightly piny and citrus hops with an interesting focused note of baked pineapple. A whole lot more malt on the nose than many DIPA's

T - Plenty of bitterness and hop flavors, but they are deeply embedded in a big malty body. Toasty, caramel maltiness and gentle nutty notes with hints of fruity esters hold a lot of hops in balance. The bitterness is evident on the palate and builds through the finish.

M - Deliciously smooth and creamy. Hops give some nice structure. Stops just shy of being a truly 'big' beer.

D - Dangerously drinkable. I will be filling the growler again soon. The 10% ABV is well-hidden.

Photo of wvsabbath
4.37/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Dark burnt orange, 2 inch orange creamy head that died fast.

Smell - Hops, very piney, hop oil, oranges, pineapple, alcohol and some malts

Taste - Enjoying everything so far from great divine, and reading the reviews, i was very happy to get ahold of this. First taste, wow, pine hops, the great divine malt flavor and the nice alcohol bite start it all off. The hops are strong, bitter, and plentlyful. I even get some hop oil in the mix. The malts from great divine are amazing, no matter if its yeti or hercules, i love the taste.

Mouthfeel - Its a mouth crusher, hops will dominate your mouth. Tounge gets the bitter hops, then coated with some sweet malts. Mouth will purk right up with the sweet and sour taste. Better eat something after this beer if you want to switch to a different style of beer

Drinkabilty - Its strong enough to were a 22oz is more then enough. The high hops and alcohol make this a session beer. Its a treat, only to be drank on occassion. One of the best

Photo of Jales140984
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beautiful Copper color, great foamy head-

Straightforward hop- very clean, subtle on the nose-

Complex, but not muddled, Citrus and pine predominately,

Smooth- great bitter punch, good depth deffinately not one-dimensional

This beer was great in the winter, next to a fire- something about the smokiness in the air complemented the smell and taste of the beer!

Photo of Westsidebuddha
3.8/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought at Whole Foods-Arroyo Pkwy Pasadena, Calif.
Bottled on August 5, 2010

Poured an amber color with barely to no head into Steinlager glass. The smell of citrus and hops hits the nose. It has a sweet taste with a definite hoppiness. Good mouthfeel, not too overwhelming. A very slight bitterness on the backend. Good drinkability with a good alcohol bite to it.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Poured into a tulip. The color is an amber-copper color with a white head and a bit of lacing. The nose is tropical and citrus hops with a bit of caramel. A pretty good amount of bitterness comes through in the flavor. There's not too much of the hop notes from the nose coming through in the flavor, just a good dose of bitterness. Light caramel and malt backing. The feel is nice with some bitterness. Good drinkability and another nice hoppy brew from GD.

Photo of Zimbo
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A lovely dominate yet light hoppy quality starts this off. Almost a whiff of damp concrete.Orangish brown in colour with a rich thick foamy off white head.

The palate is deep, clean but raw. Truly amazing finesse here with, if you can imagine it, a degree of delicacy about it. And that 10% aloohol is so well hidden. No show off here. Just quality that repays patience and involvement.

I continue to be impressed by everything I experience from Great Divide. I need to get more. Lots more.

Photo of larryi86
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- A hazy amber color with a one finger head white head.

S- Citrus hops and caramel malts.

T- Big hop flavor that is not too bitter, getting pine/earth hops mainly with citrus hops in the finish and a nice malt backbone that brings it together.

M- Nice medium body, smooth, refreshing.

D- A solid Double IPA that is very easy to drink for 10% ABV. Definitely worth picking up.

Photo of philbe311
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - A copper tinged light to medium gold color... No head, just a veil of splotchy lace and a thin color... Still with no noticeable carbonation... Rather pedestrian given the large nature of this brew...

S - Hops are first and foremost which should be no surprise... Mostly pungent citrus with a tinge of mild pine hops... Cracker and biscuit buried beneath the surface... Quite appealing...

T - Hops, hops, and more hops with a bit of crackery malt unertones... A potent DIPA that is a little bit of a one trick poney which isn't necessarily a bad thing... A subtle kiss of spice adds some much needed dimensionality to this offering...

M - On the lighter side of full bodied... Minimal carbonation... Consistent sip after sip... Hefty and sturdy... A minor touch of lushness... A bit of chalky finish...

D - An above average, but not steller DIPA that is unforgiven and packs quite the wallop... Would gladly drink again, but the 10% ABV makes this one a little rough around the edges...

Photo of climax
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good looking beer, here. The deep amber body is slightly hazy, and holds up a good size tan head that notches and laces all the way down. I'm ready to drink.

Nose was more well balanced than I was anticipating, not a hop assault. Sweet caramel and roasted nuts match the citrus/pine hop profile very well. Pink grapefruit, bubblegum, a bit of acidity and a dash of soapiness make up the hop bill. Not an overload, a bit more strength would have been alright, but it's still very good.

Alcohol is well hidden in the aroma and the taste, definitely no evidence of 10%ABV. It's certainly smooth for the style, perhaps a little low octane on flavor, but very enjoyable. Once again, very well balanced all the way through. Grapefruit and pine get boosted with spice and a sturdy toasty malt backbone.

The about medium, plenty sticky with a dry finish. The carbonation is modest but ample. Brutally easy to drink, watch yourself because it goes down like a regular IPA and packs twice the wallop.

Photo of StarshipPoopers
4.41/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - What a wonderful looking beer. I am giving this a 5 for appearance. With a moderately hard pour you get a 2-3 finger frothy cream coloured head. The lacing is excellent and the beer always has a film of head. The colour itself is a deep and hazy orange.

S - The smell isn't quite what you expect. Instead of the usual bitterness one would expect you get a nice waft of sweet smelling malts and earthy notes with a touch of citrus thrown in. The sweetness smells primarily of caramel/toffee.

T - Usually I am all for a DIPA that focuses on bitterness. With Hercules it is quite the opposite, the focus is clearly on the complex malts. The initial flavours are of caramel and toffee, followed by a slight cocoa taste (intermittent but tasty!) and then the citrus and bitterness kicks in. Hop bitterness is quite subdued though it is certainly present, especially at the end of a swig. The hops have a grapefruit character to them. Alcohol heat becomes much more pronounced as it warms up, adds to the character even more.

M/D - Excellent. The mouthfeel of this is perfect. Creamy and smooth with good character that evolves as you drink it. The beginning of a swig is sweet followed by a tangy citrus and slight bitterness at the end, all while the sweetness continues on. Nice complexity. The drinkability is scary for a 10%ABV drink, I could easily drink this all night with likely dire consequences.

I've had the pleasure of trying Hercules DIPA a few different times and each time I've been impressed. Definitely a recommended DIPA.

Photo of bishopdc0
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Nice thick head beautiful color amber many floaties

Malt lots of malt the hops are earthy and a nice buttery caramel malt

The mouth is smooth the taste is full of subtle hops then it become less subtle into a crystal malt taste and hop bitterness finishes.

The mouth is smooth and nice no harsh carbonation and the drink is average for a DIPA

Photo of WestValleyIPA
4.16/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz into my Zatec fluted glass. Gorgeous fluffy 3 fingers of white head. Decent retention and nice lacing. Nice full bodied amber color. Smells of sweet malt up front. Actually, that's all I smell. Malt. Tastes very earthy, not floral or citrusy really. Sorta sweet. Nice lingering bitter finish. The mouth is really nice and drying, bubbly and creamy. It's scary that this is 10%. Feels like 7. Kinda one dimensional flavor and nose-wise, but not a bad beer by any means.

Photo of greenmonstah
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle.

A - Pours a deep copper with one finger of an off-white head that lasts for a while. Good lacing.

S - Not too hoppy, only a hint. There's a fruity sweetness to it and it's heavy on the malt.

T - Very fruity, surprisingly so. Very much like a hoppier barleywine. Hops, then sweetness and tropical fruitiness followed by the malt and a lovely warmth from the alcohol.

M - Medium body and carbonation is weak. Smoooth as can be and very fulfilling. Eventually it dries out a bit, but it's just a wonder to drink.

D - Alcohol shows up only a little for such a high ABV. Flavors are quite intense, making the first sip almost... jarring, but from there is is simply delicious and a joy to drink.

EDIT - I have since had the opportunity to have this fresh on tap. It was even better. Hoppier and incredibly crisp. Perhaps I would bump up the taste score a bit, but I will instead stand by my initial review. If you can find it on tap and fresh, that is the way to enjoy this excellent beer.

Photo of zachariaIPA
4.38/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Coppery with a thick pearly white head- extreme lacing, thick webbing throughout the entire glass.

Hops, leaves, Autumn. Cidery cirtus, fruity pineappleness with malty brownsuggary sweetness throughout.

A very, very smooth DIPA. F-me this is a 10.0% ABV! Nutty, malty and gloriously hoppy. The most pleasant balanced hop bitterness lingers throughout. You can taste this beer long after it has slid gracefully down your gullet.

This feels wonderful in the mouth. It's 10%, but you could drink a couple of those, yessir.

This is Victory Beer.

Photo of billshmeinke
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into a nonic. Bottled August 05 2010.

Body is amber with some golden hues. Quarter inch of white head that retains quite well.

In the nose I get toffee, some barleywine like fruity esters. Not too much in the way of hops.

The tastes has toffee, a touch of tootsie rolls, and barleywine like fruity esters (figs/plumbs/raisins). The hops bring out some apricots, peaches and pine, but the malt here steals the show. Nutty and bitter finish lingers. Really strong and in your face brew.

The mouthfeel is full bodied and nicely carbonated. Bordering on barleywine thickness, but not quite.

So yeah, this is basically a hoppy barleywine. Don't try it expecting a true DIPA, because that's not what you are gonna get. It was pretty good though.

Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 3,678 ratings.