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Hercules Double IPA - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,543 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,543
Hads: 3,944
Avg: 4.13
pDev: 18.16%
Wants: 268
Gots: 503 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hercules Double IPA Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,543 | Hads: 3,944
Photo of Gavage
4.58/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a slightly hazy orange color with a thick 2+" head with several large bubbles that lasts quite a long time. Some moderate lacing develops. Lots of carbonation bubbles rising slowly to the surface.

Smell: lots of pinecones and citrus are easily detected by the nose.

Taste: nice malt backbone, caramel, orange sweetness, grapefruit tartness, pine bitterness, grass, and hints of alcohol. Well balanced as the flavor tones are all easily discernable.

Mouhtfeel: medium-heavy in body. Light crispness at the start, with a smooth, lightly crisp finish. Aftertaste is long on the pine bitterness and citrus tones.

Drinkability: the bomber bottle was quaffed rather quickly and I was looking for another, but I only bought one. Insanely good, just a great beer. A must buy.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First Sample
Pours a lightly hazy, ruby-copper color. The beer is topped by a creamy tan to amber colored head. The aroma is most strongly of candied citrus fruits, and pine. This is a nice fully hop-flavored beer. I get notes of grapefruit, lychee, pine, and a nectar that is made up of hop Lupulin glands. There is a nice mouth coating bitterness in the finish. The taste reminds me of candied orange peels, but also has notes of sweet caramel, toasted biscuits, heady malts. Overall this beer is quite chewy with a medium bodied character that is derived from the residual malts that help carry and accentuate the hops. This beer finishes with a citrus hop zing that definitely lingers on the palate.

Second Sample
Pours a clear copper color that sits under a foamy, thick tan head. The aroma is redolent of piney hop aromatics. There is a thick mouthfeel to this beer that definitely lingers. The taste is dominated by pine and it is quite bitter in the finish. There are definite notes of candied orange peel, but the flavor is dominated by the pine notes and the intense bitterness in the finish. As my palate adjusts to the harshness in this beast, it gets tastier and more in balance. I can't really taste it, but there is a serious malt backbone here, which helps to carry the over-the-top level of hopping that is in this beer. This tastes quite fresh, but, oddly not nearly as good and balances as when I first had this. I think that this needs a little bit of age on it to mellow out.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle with a bottled on date of 10-23-08...let's hope it's not too late to taste the hops. On to the beer:

Dark, ruby orange color, hints crimson if you squint hard enough....with a creamy, froathing head on top. A little nutty yeast in the aroma, to go along with the powerful, yet fading hop aroma. A zest of squeezed citrus makes it interesting. To the taste...it's a good one. Pretty well balanced, hidden alcohol = potentially lethal. Faded, but resinous hops start off the journey. Burnt caramel and pinneapple notes add pieces to the overall flavor. Leafy. Some dry malt tastes of dried bread. It hints wood and tobacco flavors. Feels lighter than the listed 9.1% ABV, quite smmoth with an occasional zip of carbonation bubbles.

Hercules DIPA is not for the faint of heart (as the label says), but it is fit for me and most left coast beer geeks.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice dark amber, almost glowing, color. Good one finger head that exuded hops aroma. Yes, hops, they're all over the place. Flowery and citrus hit the nose hard and dominate the palate. There are enough malts to bring the hops down to a good level of balance, but this is definitely a DIPA. A good bite that comes, goes, and then comes back in the finish. Served very cold at Falling Rocks (denver); perhaps better feel if warmer?
Could have drank plenty of these if not for the $$$.

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Photo of tempest
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hmm, I think this might be slightly shelf-aged from the Party Source in Syracuse, making it come off more like Rogue's Old Crusty than I remember. The hops here sweet, reisiny citrus in the aroma, more black pepper tastes comes out with taste and lingers with big-league citrus rind. There's some sweet bready malts in the aroma, similar to DFH 120, but lighter of course.

Overall, this is a big and fairly aggressive DIPA (but not too aggressive). What's not to like?

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22 oz. bomber, poured into an Imperial Pint Glass,

A: Dark amber, with a tannish head, with quite a greenish-style hue, with excellent Belgian-style lacing.

S: A lot of hops, very hoppy, with tangerine, grapefruit, and pine, very fragrant.

T: Big grapefruit and other citrus notes, balanced by a good caramel malt background, with a fair amount of warming alcohol.

M: Big and chewy, very resiny.

D: A good beer, a good Double IPA, in my opinion a little too malty for the style, but that is a minor complaint. A big beer, though, one bomber is more than enough for me.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip

I've also recently reviewed Hopslam and Hop 15. I didn't find the same similarities with this beer as I did between those two (generally speaking). This had much less of the citrus/honey sweetness that the other two had and had more of a hop presence from start to finish.

A: Translucent copper/amber color that is cloudy with sediment. Fluffly white head that dissipates to thick film with generous lacing.
S: Hops first and more than anything followed by some bitter citrus and pine with the slight burn of alcohol
T: Clean, crisp punch of hops from the start that never lets up. Some bitter citrus and earthy pine flavor and then a very dry finish of bitter hops. As this warms up a little more it gets a little sweeter, like grapefruit.
M: Medium body with light carbonation. Aftertaste is slightly watery. Slight presence of alcohol
D: Easy drinking for 9.1% abv. Despite the hops digging in form the beginning and the bitterness never really letting up, the finish is very clean and refreshing. Doesn't attack the taste buds in quite the same way that Hopslam does. A little more sweetness would make this easier to drink for me.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 335ml Brown Bottle, obtained from Borough Market, London. Recommended by BA ColoradoBobs.

Poured into a Hoegaarden 'Grand Cru' stemmed tulip glass.

A dull, deep terracotta orange body with an off-white almost biege coloured, tight but thin foaming head. The beers body has a very slight haze to it, but not enough to detract from its fine looks.

The aroma was all hops and more hops, some malty molasses type smells did pop up if I sniffed hard and long enough.

I tasted this straight after a Titan IPA, this is a seriously hoppy brew compared to that (and I thought that hoppy). It is a little too hoppy for my English tender tastebuds, but it obviously hits all the right notes for the style. I obviously can't compare it with others within its class, but overall I liked it.

Not used to 9.10% beers (although I do hit Belgium regular), this seemed well balanced and hid the alcohol very well.

Will this turn me into a hop monster? Probably not. Will I look out for hoppy American beers in the future? Probably.

Thanks John, only another 5 Colorado beers left to try/review (before I buy some more?).

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass, the beer is a bright, vibrant amber coloring with a slight haze, and a thin lacing of foamy head. Hops and hops and hops all over the nose, with a good blend of piney and citrusy-sweet notes, also. Bits of spice/pepper in the deep inhales. The beer is round, and fills your mouth right off the bat! Malty sweet flavors slip onto the tongue first, laying down a nice foundation for the aromatic and piney hops that follow. The spices continue to be present, and highlight the aftertaste as well. There are also some sweet grapefruit and grassy tastes towards the end of the tongue. Aftertaste is all hops, with the slight peppery spices mentioned before. Surprisingly, the finish is lingering and sweet, and the slightest bit bitter. My mouth actually watered the longer I tried to focus on the aftertaste and finish, so I guess that ranks high on the drinkability scale!

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a decent head and nice lacing. The smell starts with a little graininess and progresses to clean hops. The taste starts with bitter fruity hops with a late grapefruit hit. There is also a solid malt background that is nicely balanced with the hops. The mouthfeel is a little grainy that makes the beer slightly heavier than I'd like, but nice balance of creaminess and crispness.

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Photo of Zorro
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed through the miracle of BIF 43 NC Lotto and hoppedup.

After the pour I am rewarded with a chill hazed copper colored ale with a good one-inch tan colored head. Quite good head formation for the strength of this beer.

Smell is strong spicy hops, very tasty smelling. Strong but clean citrus hop aroma, mostly of the grapefruit type. Strongly spicy and peppery to the nose, this gives the sensation of cinnamon, mint and oranges to the nose as well as black pepper. Hard to pick out the individual hop aromas here, the hops are very aromatic.

Taste is sweet and fairly woody with a strong grapefruit after taste at the beginning. Quite spicy on the tongue and almost HOT from the hop strength. Noticeable alcohol in the flavor but it is sensed as pepper by the tongue in combination with the VERY heavy hop load used here. The website says this is 85 IBUs but it seems stronger than that in the same class as Stone Ruination in Hops that kick your butt sensation. Hop flavors span the entire spectrum but are stronger in pineapple, grapefruit, lime and wood/tea flavors. Quite bitter but after the 3 sip you tongue is quite numbed by the hops and you don't notice it. A hop heads wet dream in a glass.

Mouthfeel is good for such a powerful brew.

Drinkability here is all about how much hops you can tolerate. At this point I have in fact evolved into something of a hophead and I love these hop bombs. For a hophead this is a 4.5 in drinkability. For a non-hop head, this is more like a 2 in drinkability; it will seriously kick your butt.

Great Divide should put that on the label in big letters "Warning! This beer will kick your Butt! Only meant for hopheads and the inmates of a Oregon Hophead insane asylum!"

Personally I REALLY liked this beer!

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured an amber brown color with yellow highlights that had a half finger og head and left good lacing sticking to the glass. The aroma was a combination of grassy pine hops and caramel style malts along with bready and citrus notes. There was also some faint underlying booze notes to it. Upfront on the palate I did receive a little hop bite but the bitterness was helped out by some citrus grapefruit character and had grassy pine accents. The caramel malt was definitely there to help out on the balance and add a touch of sweetness. The brew was medium to full in body with a good amount of carbonation which had a piney,grassy hop, citric, and mild bitter finish. It drank quite well with the alcohol nicely hidden but I have to say the titan for me had a better hop punch and that's what I really look for in a DIPA.

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Photo of weeare138
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had an entire sixtel of this on draft and failed to review it. I'm getting my chance now with this 22 ounce bottle.
Appears a hazy, copper toned amber with a fluffy, off-white head. Good amounts of scattered lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of sweet biscuit, toasted nuts, honey, citrus, pine, and fruity apple blossoms.
Taste is of the aromas, along with a doughy, sweet caramel found in the background of the citrus & pine blasted hop profile.
Mouthfeel is well balanced of sweet malts, and hoppy, grapefruit that meld together for a hop lover's dream. The feel is medium-full bodied but creamy.

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Photo of biegaman
4.51/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wine drinkers will recognize this orangey colour from the label of the illustrious Veuve Clicquot champagne; beer drinkers know it best as the American IPA. It is a toasty golden tone that welcomes the light with open arms, becoming a much brighter, much glassier (and slightly more transparent) tone. A sandy brushing of head blankets the surface and cakes the glass in layer upon layer of droopy, eccentric patterns of lacing.

The aroma is certainly Herculean. The way this thing smells it sends out a message saying: 'I am; I am here; I am now'. It doesn't so much as say 'hello' as it does smack you upside the head. It is a budding orchard, it is fresh cut citrus fruit, it is mysterious herbals, it is nectar serum, it is... an utmost amazing, tantalizing thing.

With Hercules DIPA you start to see hops, I mean really, literally start seeing hops. Your field of vision goes green, your eyes water up with resins and your tears taste of a stinging citrus. The malts may also be deserving of some mention, but with a hop spectacle such as this there just really isn't the room to spare to write about them.

I find Greek mythology pretty interesting to begin with, but find a way to write Great Divide somewhere into that lore and hot damn sign me up for that class (it would certainly be a popular course)! I'm sure Greeks everywhere have already started claiming credit for this beer; certainly it is worthy of its own saga and mysticism.

I swear, one day they'll find something in the water in Bolder, something that should account for why every Great Divide beer drinks with such polished finesse and unequaled quaffability. Even with all its backbreaking bitterness (85 IBU) and almighty alcohol content (10%) this drinks with an intense level of gratification and refreshment.

Hercules has a gargantuan hop profile, colossal strength and mighty character - it is well deserving of its namesake. The write up says something about this beer not being fit for mortals, but suitable for the Gods. And once you finish it, you do kind of feel like one - either because you made it through a titanic 9.1% bomber or just because the 9.1% itself! Whatever the case, this is certainly a heavenly, divine experience.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on date of April 23, 2010
Poured in to Duvel tulip

A - Dark amber colour with some hints of light brown throughout and a finger of creamy white head.

S - Lots of hops up front - grapefruit, tangerine and a hint of pine. A significant sweet caramel malt nose in the background. Smells like a very well balanced DIPA.

T - A great balance of hops and malts. The hops hit you up front and are predominantly citrus with heavy grapefruit notes and some pine. At first the citrus is dominant but the pine becomes more prevalent as I continue to drink it. The sweet malts taste of sticky caramel with a spicy aftertaste. Very well balanced.

M - Medium body, sticky and a nice chew.

D - An excellent DIPA.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. Bomber Pours a nice dark copper color, some carbonation, small head, very nice lacing afterwards. Scents of hops aplenty, citrusy, and some sweetness. Very nice taste of hops, and sweet. Medium body with a nice bitter bite at the end. Very drinkable at 9.1% ABV, the bottle also sez 85 IBUs which is the first time I've seen this on a bottle, what it means I'm not sure. This brew is highly recommend for sure, will be buying again.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep golden bronze colour, with a thick, fine-bubbled head of white foam. Lacing is excellent, and the retention of the head is good, staying as a fine film of bubbles right down to the bottom of the glass. Fair amount of tiny carbonation. Pretty nice.

Big and pungent nose of fruity and resinous hops. Notes of peach and pine resin, with lots of cut grass as well. Not quite the tropical notes of a big c-filled IPA - it actually reminds me of a US-brewed ESB. The hops are slightly sharper and more resinous. Still, it's a powerful nose, and bursting with flavour. Very nice.

Taste is initially smooth, with a welling of medicinal hops, and a slight butterscotch character on the back that stays around a little too long, leaving the finish slightly cloying. Fortunately, the hops are sharp enough to counteract this effect, leaving a big, biting bitterness slicing through the center. By the time the sweet finish has been subdued, there's still a decent dollop of hop oil sitting on the tongue. Mouthfeel is slick and smooth, with just a slight aeration from the carbonation giving it a little levity. Very nice indeed.

Yes, a very tasty brew. Heaps of character, and although the balance and integration is slightly off, the amount of craziness makes up for it. I enjoyed it a great deal.

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Photo of John_M
4.34/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Stunned to see this on cask at Max's today.

The beer pours an amber orange color with fairly decent head retention and fair lacing. On the nose... mmmm.... this beer is all DIPA goodness, with considerable pine, orange citrus, jelly bean and light white pepper. The flavor profile replicates the nose in this well crafted DIPA. There's something of a honey and sweet jelly bean finish in this beer, which marries incredibly well in this otherwise hoppy, citrusy DIPA. The sweetness blends incredibly well with the hoppy bitterness, and at no point was the malty sweetness excessive or over the top. Mouthfeel is medium bodied to full, with a long, soft, orange candy and bitter finish. Drinkability is good to the point of danger. There is nothing hot or heavy about this beer, though you can tell the alcohol is up there.

Wow! Stunner. mmm...

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.87/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz picked up at Belmont Station over the weekend... poured into my Chimay goblet...

1" head drops very fast.. some ribbons of lace.. and the cap is pretty nice... but what catches the eye ... is this is one dark DIPA.. very amber.. with deep orange highlites when held to a lamp.

again.. even the nose smells dark... caramel... toffee... toasty grains... maybe even some nutty/cocoa components.. west coast hops.... grapefruit and pine.. but the malts seem way out of whack in my mind.

big bitterness moves quickly into the expected darker malt components.. nutty.. caramel.. and again darker toffee.. too sweet IMHO (for the style) .... resiny pine and lemon zest hoppiness.... some yeasty fruitiness.... and then a looong piney and bitter finish.. the body is fairly thick... and carbonation levels are pretty much spot on... the bitter finish would probably get to me after more than one glass.

despite my above negativity.... this brew is pretty damned tasty... I just prefer DIPA's that have more of a singular malt bill.


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Photo of vfgccp
4.62/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A - Great color with a light haze. Deep amber ice tea. Fine white head has great staying power, but relatively low lace.

S - Apricot, honey, light booze, marzipan, warm woody hops.

T - Wow. Bright wood, warm mulled cider, bourbon, vanilla, bitter herbs. Stellar integration.

M - Super smooth with a full body.

O - An awesome DIPA, well worth the hype.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.85/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an orange color, fluffy head that lasts and good carbonation.

S: The aroma is pine, citrus and a slight floral blast.

T: Taste is, obviously, dominated by hops but the malty sweetness gives the bitterness a run for its money.Caramel, pine, floral and citrus make up the taste

M: Mouthfeel is a bit thin for me as IIPA. Stone IPA is about the same to me. There is a definite aftertaste of bitterness on the roof of my mouth.

D: Very drinkable.

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Photo of wl0307
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased from a very good Britain-based beer shop, "Beers of Europe", through on-line order. Coming in a light brown, 355ml bottle, BB 03/2009, served cool in Tripel Karmeliet's branded long-stemmed, bulb-shaped goblet.

A: pours a dark reddish amber hue with plenty of tiny cottony bits of yeast sediments and a constantly-flowing but fine carbonation, topped with a moderate layer of dark beige frothy head that lasts very decently.
S: the nose is dominated by a dense composition of oily hops, richly apricot- and lychee-ish as well as flowery, on top of a decent backbone of brown-sugary (a bit like Chinese white-gourd candy) maltiness, creamy lychee syrup and random honey. The balance is certainly retained, but gearing towards the sweet side of maltiness, for sure.
T: a lubricating, rich swallow of mild alc., spicy-fruity hoppiness as of lychee fruits, pines and tannic Chinese teas comes on top of really juicy pale malts (with touches of burned sugar and white gourd candy), which prolongs the mid-taste for a good while until the underlying impact of hop resins and bitterness manifests itself in full swing, rendering a deep and moderately bitter finish ("moderate" as opposed to the Stone Ruination IPA at 100+ IBUs consumed yesterday...). As the tannic bitterness expands on the palate, the aroma of hops seems to penetrate through the thick malty body as well, revealing a complex, aromatic aftertaste of overripe red-grapefruits, lychee-fruit stems, prunes, and a bouquet of hop juice.
M&D: super fine fizziness pairs with the rich but not heavy body just well, making this really flavoursome and thick ale ever lighter and more drinkable. Overall, the taste is really remarkable in a sense that all the hop flavour and bitter impacts are harmoniously balanced by a considerable yet soothing malt backbone, allowing for smooth manifestation of hop complexities. This is a highly drinkable DIPA to me, without any "sharp" or overwhelming characters that one might usually relate to this beer style.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a three finger cream head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Almost clear amber color. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Grapefruit/pine nose. Flavor is sweet, hoppy grapefruit and pine. Lingering hoppy aftertaste. High ABV is hidden. $4.50 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, MA.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a nice amber brown body that is slightly hazy with a nice creamy yellowish head. It has a good carbonation various size bubbles.

S- Smell so slightly toasted malts and pale malt lay the base for some spicy green hops. The malt has a hint of sweet graham cracker as it warms.

T- The big taste of hops has hints of pine, light grapefruit and some juicy fruit notes. There are nice flavors of caramel and lightly toasted malt that give it a good base for all the hops. The finish is a nice hop bitterness with some spicy qualities followed by a nice alcohol warmth.

M- Medium mouthfeel with a faint hint of fizz and a nice alcohol warmth that is very gentle.

D- This beer has nice big hops but it is well balanced by a good malt backbone and some alcohol warmth. The hops have a very complex flavor and it is hard to pick one or two main characteristics to the hops.

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Photo of Tone
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear, amber/maize color. One and one half inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of hops, sweet malt, and slight citrus. Fits the style of an American Double / Imperial IPA. Mouth feel is smooth and slightly thick with an average carbonation level. Tastes of strong hops, citrus, sweet malt, slight raisin, and strong alcohol. Overall, a really good body, blend, complexity, and aroma.

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Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,543 ratings.