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Hercules Double IPA - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

3,431 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,431
Reviews: 1,489
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 177
Gots: 207 | 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:
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 added by: filabrazilia on 04-11-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,431 | Reviews: 1,489 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Quaffer
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%

22 oz. bottle. Label claims 85 IBU.

Appearance: This was a hazy, glowing copper beer. I poured it very carefully down the side of the glass and still got a think, dense head over two fingers tall. It settled down very slowly, becoming even more dense and rocky. It left tons of thick foam on the side of the glass as it dissipated. After drinking, the glass was covering in lace, solid sheets in most places.

Smell: A great raw hops smell was right there in my face, citrusy and a little herbal. It easily dominated the nose, but there were hints of other aromas hovering in the background. Bread, light spices, and vanilla peaked through at times, but the overriding component was hops. No surprise.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and lightly chewy, with either a butteriness or oiliness (I really couldn't tell) that coated the mouth. Pretty smooth, with a foamy carbonation forming as the beer lingered in the mouth.

Taste: A ton of sweet malt was present on the tip of the tongue. This was immediately joined by a thick herbal and citrus hops flavor. A good dose of bitterness accompanied the flavor of the hops. That was it; a straightforward flavor.

Not a bad beer, but there wasn't any complexity to it. Plus, in the attempt to keep this balanced (which I admire), I think they went a little too far with the malt. It could have been drier. The great aroma and appearance saved this from scoring lower.

Quaffer, Dec 01, 2005
Photo of sinistermadman
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%

A regular in my lineup, I don't know why I haven't reviewed this before.

Pours a golden orange hue with a nice frothy head. Smell is wonderful bouqet of chinook hops, pine and citrus; wonderfully juicy.

Taste is considerably hop laden, with a backing of sweet malt. Taste can be described as "big", but is very drinkable considering the alcohol content. Mouthfeel is resinous and juicy, with a slightly gritty hop bite. A well balanced brew that is commonly employed in my sessions. Well worth a try. Cheers.

sinistermadman, Nov 29, 2005
Photo of Gagnonsux
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%

The color is a hazy red shade of copper. The light brown head is very creamy and is of an average height. Retention is good. The aroma is of strong, citrissy hops with a smell most reminiscent of pineapples. An underlying malt sweetness is also present. Hercules has an excellent hop flavor, again pineapple comes to mind. Plenty of underlying malt flavor provides a nice balance and a bit of nutty flavor. Bitterness is ample, but doesn't seem unrelentingly harsh at 85 IBUs. The 9.1% ABV isn't noted at all. This is a great DIPA, the hop flavor is damn near perfect and the malt is well-matched. Highly recommended.

Gagnonsux, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of deBeers
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%

This is a dark amber leaning towards an almost light brown color. Creamy mouthfeel due to the heavenly off-white head. Smells of honey, sweet sweet honey. Very subdued yet alluring. The hops are very complex as well. Hard for me to decipher what's going on other than that this beer is well balance and tasted yummy. If only my palate was more refined...this is so smooth and refined for a double IPA!

Nutty, yet sweet malt profile. One word...heavenly. Hints of caramel as well?

Quoting/reading the bottle afterwards..."Huge amount of hops from start to finish, its hefty backbone of nutty, malty sweetness balances its aggressive hop profile." 85 IBU's

deBeers, Nov 24, 2005
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%

(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.

rhoadsrage, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of DogFood11
4.83/5  rDev +16.9%

Peach color, super sticky lacing, a few islands of head retain throughout.

Huge fresh hop aroma, apricot, citrus and a touch of floral. Truly a spectacle to take in. Huge in every aspect and what I would expect in a Double.

Fresh slick hops are dominant. This is a friggin hop McBomb. Bitter as hell, grapefruity citrus at points, just a touch of sweet fruits and malt but it is a hunt to find it. This is one of those beers where its taken almost to extreme but it doesn't cross the line into annoying. This is a damn fine brew.

Notes: Bought this in denver and somehow had the willpower to not drink it till I got home for a monday night football game. Now that I know its awesome I wish I would have brought back more. Oh well, Keep your eye's open for this gem.

DogFood11, Nov 22, 2005
Photo of jamesdergen
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%

Appearance: Pours a nice, cloudy pumpkin orange with a nice, dense foamy head that sticks around and leaves some nice lacing.

Smell: Nice, light piney floral hop aroma.

Taste: Big, dense ultra-hoppy flavor. Very nutty, piney and floral. I would never have guessed this brew is 9.1%, it is hidden exceptionally well.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied brew with a nice level of carbonation. Foams up a bit too quickly in the mouth, but otherwise very nice.

Drinkability: This 22 will not last long and, considering the ABV, it goes down easy, maybe too easy... :)

I had Great Divide's Fresh Hop Pale Ale and loved it so I decided to try this one and I am very glad I did! If you can get your hands on it, I highly recommend it.

jamesdergen, Nov 20, 2005
Photo of Franchise
4.5/5  rDev +9%

This double IPA pours a caramel color and leaves a thin tan lace that sticks to the side of the glass. The smell is fantastic, some great hoppy, floural, citrus, apple, and pine essence all comes out. The taste of this beer is great, "a hop packed punch". This beer is great all the flavors I expected on my palate just come out lemon, citrus, floural, hops, even some sweetness honey is what I'm tasting. This beer is well crafted, I would consider pairing this with some lemon chicken and sauteed asparagus it would really bring out the the citrus flavors in the beer.

Franchise, Nov 19, 2005
Photo of scooter231
4.7/5  rDev +13.8%

Oh Great Divide, how I wish you were on the east coast where I could easily find you... this DIPA rocked.

Wonderfully hoppy and citrusy with a pineyness to it that made it unique tasting and different. Bubbly. Very, very smooth and creamy. Amazingly crisp and refreshing, and the alcohol content is well-hidden. After a few sips you get a nice warming feeling going on. Warm and fuzzy.

Hopfiends- you will love this brew. I can't say enough about it- delicious, amazing, wonderful. Great DIPA.

scooter231, Nov 16, 2005
Photo of ommegangpbr
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%

Yet another big beer that makes objectivity difficult.
Still, this is very well made as far as my senses can detect.
Smooth and surprisingly well balanced... big hop flavor without it being aggressive; a good malt backbone to stand up to so much rich hoppyness.
Rich and luxurious all around... if a bit heavy/dense.
If only this was readily available on the east coast...
ohhh if only.

ommegangpbr, Nov 15, 2005
Photo of Naes
4.13/5  rDev 0%

This DIPA pours out a dark orange, almost brown. The head is a tall frothy layer of off white foam.
Aroma is of piney hops.
The flavor is of hops all the way, though it is most bitter in the finish. There is also a slight malt character throughout the entire sip. Some ripe fruit as well.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated.

Naes, Nov 13, 2005
Photo of kozmo
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%

Hops, hops and more hops.

Enjoyed this on a cool New England evening. Served in a goblet. Nice head, with a fragrant bouquet that was hoppy to the point of being quite herbal without any skunkiness.

Color is a beautiful amber that is a fine match for the flavor and full/warm mouth feel.

This is a VERY hoppy brew that is heavier than the traditional IPA without being overpowering. I enjoyed taking my time with this, as it really blossomed as it warmed. One to savor for the ages!

kozmo, Nov 12, 2005
Photo of peabody81
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%

22 oz. bottle, the first thing that hits you with this beer is the smell (that and the lingering head). VERY strong citrus, I knew I was in for a serious hop experience. Color was orangish-brown, the thing that impressed me was the head and the lacing on my mug, more like a carpet than a lacing, and it was sparkly, almost crystalline.

Taste is hops, hops, hops, to me, this had a stronger hop presence than even Stone Ruination. Don't get me wrong, I love hops, but would have liked just a little bit of malt.

If you're looking for total hop immersion, this is your beer, if you want more balance, go elsewhere.

I have now had both this and Great Divide's Old Ruffian Barleywine, which was sublime, I think I had a religious experience drinking it, I am very impressed with this brewery.

peabody81, Nov 09, 2005
Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy orangish copper color at first pour that had a half-inch of off white bubbles that stayed around for a while. There is a good bit of lacing on the glass after dinking.

Aroma: Lots of citrus in the nose. There is noticeable grapefruit, oranges, lemons, and a whole orchard full of citrus trees hiding in this beer. As I try to smell the malt...I get none as the beer is still cold. The hops never really let up after the beer warms.

Taste: There is a lot of citrus to greet you in the beginning. This doesn't really let up the entire profile. The hops take on a citrus note in the beginning, but then this fades to a more floral flavor shortly thereafter. After all of this, the bittering hops start to set in to try and take charge of the syrupy and oily mess created by the hop oils and residual sweet malt. The finish has some malty backbone to it, and the bittering hops are definitely the key player. However, the finish isn't metallic or sharply bitter, but just slightly off balance toward the bittering hops. A nice finish for such a hop accentuated beer.

Opinion: Wow, now THIS is an imperial IPA! The late additions of hops are insane in this beer! There is so much citrus bouquet and flavor here that you can hardly concentrate on anything else. Somehow after this bombardment on your palate, there is an almost balanced finish.

This is a well-crafted beer, and one that is definitely worth trying. I am not a hophead; so it doesn't really "do it" for me, but that's OK...I can still appreciate it. It probably has the most balanced finish of any IIPA I have tried thus far, while it lacks nothing for the hophead. Go Great Divide!

SkeeterHawk, Nov 08, 2005
Photo of BEERchitect
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%

A tremendous IPA! Compared to other double I's, Hercules pours a thick and almost syrupy look, making me think it will be too sweet. Hazy and orange - rust in color, it forms a thick 1" head that remained. Very perfume-ey, citrus-ey and with intense hop resins. Flavors of hop hits with the sweetness for a very round and well-melded flavor. Though heavy on the toung, never cloying or tackey feeling. Intense citrus flavors without the tartness. Ripe oranges, lemons, and grapfruity. Throw in peaches and pears for good measure. Spicy but not bite-ey. Good pine-ey flavors without grassy-ness. Overall, a beautiful beer. Finishes sweet and a bit dry. I can't recall having a better IIPA.

BEERchitect, Nov 07, 2005
Photo of doubleipa
4.8/5  rDev +16.2%

This is my favorite DIPA, that I can purchase here in Georgia. The head is big, rocky, and never fully diminishes. Lacing is really good. The obvious citrus/grapefruit aroma is very evident and the hoppy/resin taste matches the aroma perfectly. Drinkability would've been a 5.0, except that the alcohol can really sneak up on you. It's hard to tell from the tast/mouthfeel that this is 9.1%
Updated - 4/23/06 - Had this on tap last night. This is even a better beer on tap. The aroma and taste were better. My wife even noticed it. This has come as close as possible to matching the Pelican India Pale Ale, which is our absolute favorite.

doubleipa, Nov 02, 2005
Photo of Lnedrive14
4.28/5  rDev +3.6%

Tremendous brew. An absolutely fantastic double IPA: smooth, but potent, with a great hop bitterness, but no lasting residue. While it is still cold it is somewhat sweet, but that sort of dissipates as the beer warms, letting the hops take over. Pours a hazy amber with a small head. Very little controlling alcohol.

My only complaint is that it is not quite as complex as other double IPA's that I've had. In other words, its a great beer that I would be lucky to drink every day, but it didn't blow my mind.

Lnedrive14, Nov 02, 2005
Photo of benito
2.93/5  rDev -29.1%

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.

benito, Oct 27, 2005
Photo of wingnutter
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%

22 oz bomber. Bought a week ago and had been sitting in my fridge, daring me to give it a go. I will now give in and comply. I will review as I drink this for the 1st time ever...The top has been popped, and poured into a Chimay Goblet. Pours a rich amber color, kinda hazy. Nice head, dissapated quickly due to my expert pouring ;)

Smell: Hippity-HOP! Smack!...but theres a caramelly sweetness in the aroma. The smell reminds me of DFH 90min. Floral, hoppy, sweet, caramel, alcohol.

Taste: Bitter hops up front...Alcohol hiding nicely...doesnt feel like a 9+% ABV beer. A little citrus/pine combo, followed by that delicate caramel-like sweetness. Almost stings my tongue with its hoppy goodness. Upon swallowing, a nice dryness, making me want another sip..

mouthfeel: Viscous, slight oiliness, and leaves me thirsty after every sip, almost like the tannins in a dry wine. Almost no aftertaste other than lingering hop oiliness. Wonderful.

Drinkability: Although the taste makes me think this beer has super drinkability, and it does, I have to curtail my rating a tad because of ABV. I wouldnt even attempt to drink a 2nd bomber of this because it tastes so good Id be compelled to drink it too fast, and thats not something I want to do.

Highly recommended. Great divide has a winner here.

wingnutter, Oct 26, 2005
Photo of blackie
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%

appearance: 22 ounce single. The pour into the snifter creates a gorgeous 1", ever so slightly tan colored head. The bubbles recede slowly, leaving a nice lacing on the wall of the glass. Eventually, a collar and and island of carbonation are left on top. The beer itself is a perfectly clear amber color, with loads of orange hues.

smell: Mmm loads of sweet hops. No, really, they actually smell sweet. It has to be the malt providing the sweetness, I suppose, but they are matched so well. These are some floral hops here, mmmm. Plenty of citrus, evergreen, and sweet tropical fruits. Great stuff here. Wow.

mouthfeel: Carbonation is between light and medium, and is composed of very small, smooth bubbles. The body is a heavy medium.

taste: The hop levels in this thing are mouth puckering. The hop flavors are there, but the bitterness does a job at cloaking them. Some sweet malt flavors, but again the bitterness hides it pretty effectively. I would have to say that I feel the taste is the worst part of this beer, though it is still good. Maybe a little too high in bitterness, to the point where it covers some of the other positive aspects of the beer. Still, yum.

drinkability: Very drinkable for a beer of this style.

blackie, Oct 26, 2005
Photo of sponberg
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%

Big ol' bomber with some guy holding up a Q-Tip in front of the mountains. Nice gold with white head, slightly cloudy. Aroma of sweet toasted malt with background citrus hops.

Ohh, this is tasty. Great balance right off the rip - sweetish malts with hints of toffee combine with a solid hop bitterness and grapefruity flavors throughout the first three quarters of the sip. Alcohols raise their head near the end, along with a not-unpleasant grapeseedy kind of bitterness in the finish which lingers. Round and smooth. I need more. The store is closed. Oh well.

I'm digging this brewery's efforts so far. A very tasty example.

sponberg, Oct 26, 2005
Photo of goochpunch
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%

Update (11/04/06): Pours out a jewel-like orangey amber with a thin head that settles out to a thin ring. Almost still presence. Malt offers up a toasted quality to the nose, but that gets all pusehd aside by massive grapefruit and pine sap aromas. Some alcohol is present as well. Quite a bit of malt sweetness with toasted flavors and sweet citrus all up front. Some mild tartness on the sides of the mouth go well with the citric hops. This is all followed by a bittering wave of pine and grass, cleaning up all that would have been cloying. Leaves a long aspirin like bitterness on the back of the tongue. Mouthfeel is full, slightly slick, and smooth, however, a little bit more carbonation would have been welcome. One of the best dipas I've come across and highly drinkable.


~~~10/26/05~~~
Poured out a very eye-pleasing deep orange/amber. The smell is dominated by hops, of course. This isn't bad, really, but something about the particular hops used makes me think of scallions. Malt sweetness upfront then grapefruit hoppiness tears it up. Mouthfeel was pretty spot on for style. No complaints there. I would have no problem handling more than one bomber of this.

goochpunch, Oct 26, 2005
Photo of beertastegood
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%

Pours a deep orangey-amber color with a finger-width, slightly rocky fluffy head.

Smells of grapefruit/piney hops, with an intensely sweet toffee-like aroma from the malt. Alcoholic strength is evident in the smell. This one is going to be a hammer.

Taste: Big whack of hops in your face - notes of citrus, pine/spruce, with a very slight hint of mint as well. Immediately after the hops comes the malt to back them up. And what a great backup it is, a distinct nutty flavor mixed in with the caramel-like sweetness that makes me think there is some Munich malt in this brew. The alcohol is evident as the maltiness sweeps over my tongue.

Nice viscous mouthfeel (although I think the alcohol content contributes to this in a big way) with medium carbonation. A wonderfully bitter, drying finish that almost causes me to pucker up - the hops get one last lick in here before you are left with a faint pine flavor on your palate. I am not a huge fan of beers that finish like this (I like 'em to finish malty and smooth rather than bitter and drying), but it is an amazingly clean aftertaste.

Drinkability - one of the few beers above 7% ABV that I can finish a bomber of. Not to mention I don't want to split a beer this good. An excellent offering from Great Divide that catapults them to the top of my brewery list.

(Not to mention I got to meet Brian Dunn at the Dixie Cup this past weekend. It was great talking with him - he was very laid back and willing to give me some homebrew pointers.)

beertastegood, Oct 25, 2005
Photo of karst
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%

Pours hazy amber with dense ivory head that has Belgium persistance (in spite of the 9 ABV) and leaves substancial lace. Aroma from hops, citrus and pine-sap, sweet bubblegum emerges with some alcohol on warming.

Flavor of sweet caramel-toffee somewhat balanced by 85 IBU hop bitterness compining quinine and citrus pith. Interesting hop flavors but sweet caramel and maple syrup detracts from them IMHO. Medium body, with a pronounced dextrinous mouthfeel. Finishes sweet and inspite of all those bitterness units! A good DIPA, but does not seem to pull off a strong clean malt base to display the hops as I have grown to expect from brewers like 3 Floyds-Dreadnaught, Dogfish Head- 90 minute, and AleSmith.

karst, Oct 24, 2005
Photo of nlmartin
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%

Just wow! Poured from a bomber into a pub glass.

Appearance: This beer has a very nice amber coloration with a white colored head of almost an inch and a half. The lacing literally did not stop until the end of the beer.

Smell: This beer had a great piney malty citrus smell.

Taste: This beer presented with a somewhat sweet malty front taste along with a very crisp and biting hoppy after taste.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This is yet another very big and dangerously drinkable IPA. This beer has a nice hoppy taste with a great malty backbone. Dam I wish I had more.

nlmartin, Oct 21, 2005
Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 3,431 ratings.