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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

3,430 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,430
Reviews: 1,489
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 11.14%
Wants: 177
Gots: 208 | 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: 3,430 | Reviews: 1,489 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GClarkage
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%

01/31/06- Purchased at Bottleworks in Seattle, WA.

Presentation- 22oz bomber bottle with no freshness information. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Murky amber in color. Nice fuller inch or so head with decent lacing left behind.

Smell- Wonderful scent of deep malt with a brown sugar whiff. Pine hops come through as well.

Taste- Toasted malt comes through hardcore with a roasted caramel flavor. Pine hops sear through the malt and make you take notice. Maybe a light touch of vanilla as well. Seems a tad more malty though. Still very well balanced.

Mouthfeel- A touch creamy with a heavier mouthfeel. Medium carbonation level.

Drinkability- Seems to taste more like a barleywine to me than an IPA. Maybe even and English style barleywine. Very tasty. Starts out mellow but grabs your attention soon thereafter. If you are a fan of the heavier malted IPA's, give this one a try. Recommended.

GClarkage, Feb 01, 2006
Photo of froggyfrog
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%

Bomber bottle served in snifter.

Pours an overcast orange with a meaty head that dwindles to an off-white swirl of melted ice milk. The glass is held together by pretty white lace that clings in all the right places.

Aroma is dirty C-hops rich with malt. You've definitely got your grapefruit citrus in the house, but the piney hops are more cone than needles.

Lots of slick acidic Lupulin. More malt presence than most American DIPAs.

Mouthfeel is cream-filled. Full and feathery soft fades to a slow acidic Humulene chemical burn.

This brew takes an interesting approach to the DIPA style shooting for a very active nutty maltiness in the forefront to bring equilibrium to the loaded hops. The result however I think emphasizes the somewhat unpleasant oil-like burn brought by DIPA level hop rate. By choosing to not showcase the hop aroma and flavor as prominently as others this beer has taken away from itself an important component that makes heavy-hitting IPAs so enjoyable.

Overall an above average Double IPA, but not my favorite.

froggyfrog, Feb 01, 2006
Photo of arizcards
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%

Picked up a bottle at Trader Joes back in November for $5.99.

This is a orange colored brew that poured a very sturdy 3 finger head that is leaving nice "tree rings" in my glass. Nose is malty, hoppy, citrusy-very interesting. Taste starts off trying to be balanced with a nice malt intro that quickly give way to a blast of citrusy hops. Can't say I am dissapointed! Mouthfeel is medium bodied and it is very lively nicely carbonated beer. Drinkability is good as the brewer did a great job masking the high abv.

arizcards, Jan 28, 2006
Photo of Oxymoron
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%

Hercules, Herclules. Pours a cloudy amber color with orand and light red hues. Good head but limited retention. Or at least it retained around the edges. Good lacing though.

The smell is noticeable as should be. Not the biggest Double IPA but still good. A sweet citrus aroma with a grapefruit backing. A touch of pine to add. The malt has a noticeable caramel smell to it.

The taste is balanced well. A strong bittering up front that has a good bite of piney taste. The malt is somewhat limited but still does well to balance out the hops. More of a caramel taste and helps with the body. The aroma hops are rather limited as the bittering hops are more dominate, but are still detectable. A good citrus grapefruit flavor.

The body is more full then a medium feel. A good warm feeling but very smooth and easy to drink. Somewhat of a syrupy taste but still very good.

Oxymoron, Jan 27, 2006
Photo of Riggo
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%

Nice caramel/amber color witht thick sea-foam head, good head retention and outstanding lacing. Smell is alluring: cedary and woody, some lime zest perhaps and burnt sugar. Initially a pleasing prickly hop bite on the tongue. The middle is juicy and fruity but rich--a bit too rich for my tastes. A mixture of cedary hops and nutty almost smoky malt. Hops dominate in floral bouquet and bitterness but the malty richness underneath is cloying. Perhaps some of this cloyingness is due to the 9.10% ABV. Naturally the above complaint takes points away from drinkability. Finish is medium-length, hoppy (cedar), and fruity.

A potentially outstanding double IPA marred by a cloying richness. For my money, see Stone IPA for a lesson is how to avoid this--i.e. huge hops, high alcohol, without being cloying. Having said that, this being a somewhat new/"experimental" style, perhaps a double IPA should exhibit this kind of richness compared to something a like a Stone IPA. In the end, still an exciting and great beer.

Riggo, Jan 26, 2006
Photo of dawg
3.78/5  rDev -8.5%

Poured from the tap into a pint glass with a nice IPA bronze color and a white head. Started up with rapid bubbling which kept the head for awhile giving me plenty of time to relax and enjoy.

Smelled pretty hoppy as I am no hop head. I was a bit intimidated by the double IPA description but from what I gather this one was put together right.

Tasted very nice. Verry hoppy but not nasty bitter. I was happy with the balance and was suprised that the hops could come out this much without the bitterness. Even the finish was smooth.

Also in the background were some fruity flovors that tasted very natural and clean. About half way through I caught a nice floral bouquet that I missed up front.

Small bubbles felt nice.

While I am not big into IPAs I'd never turn one of these down.

dawg, Jan 24, 2006
Photo of acrawf6
4.5/5  rDev +9%

Pours out a a deep amber/golden color, looks ruby and orangish. Fluffy and foamy light tan head that rests on top for a good good while. Lots of lacing.

Smell is very nice. A light citrusy and very hoppy. Very clean smell. I think the aroma is very deceiving to whats ahead.

Taste is very good. Very hoppy (bottle says 85 ibus). Very potent on the hops, but to me not very heavy on the hoppiness, tastes like a whole shitload of a lighter hops used in it. Some raison flavors do come out in place of any other sort of fruit that could have been tasted in this style. very good malty undertone that gives this beer great balance. Earthy aftertaste. alcohol is present in aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is great. Great balance with the hops and malts. Good carbonation, tingly on my palate.

Overall this is one hell of a beer! Love it. Wish i had another i could cellar and have it tame a little, just a little. Very good. I wish i would have reviewed this a little better.

acrawf6, Jan 24, 2006
Photo of whartontallboy
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%

Tried this one in a Tripel Karmeliet glass, which really did it justice, gleaming burnt-orange body, clear with a huge head of off-white foam that left an opaque lace on the glass. It was litereally impossible to see through the lace. Wow.

Smell is citric hops, with a pine resin scent in there as well, and a big doughy malt aroma that had some hints of caramel to my nose.

The flavor is also quite hoppy, as one would expect in the style, but it's also somewhat restrained. The grapefruit and pine flavors come through pretty clearly, but not in one of those enormous-DIPA "now your mouth is numb and burned" kind of ways. The caramel malt flavors remain prominent underneath the hops. Mouthfeel is medium and well-suited for the flavor.

Overall: It's no hop monster, but it's quite drinkable and still gets you a good hop fix.

whartontallboy, Jan 22, 2006
Photo of RonfromJersey
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%

Secret Santa 2005 # 4

Slighty hazy orange body. Thick "lunar surface like" off white froth. Very good lacing.

Aggressive piney aroma.

An initial surge of sweetness slithers across the tongue, trying to escape like a snake in the grass. Escape is hopeless though, as a tidal wave of hops crash and flood the mouth - piney and fruity, though not grapefruity. The hop crash lingers in the back of the mouth for a good while. Some sense of alcohol noticeable.

Mouthfeel is medium plus. Surprising drinkability, though not necessarily dangerous.

Another fine example of Double IPA.

RonfromJersey, Jan 20, 2006
Photo of sacfly
3.78/5  rDev -8.5%

22oz
Pours a somewhat cloudy golden orange juice color. Nice thick head of large bubbles. Smells of perfume like orange potpourri.

Taste is a nice balance of caramel malt with piney sap like flavor mixed in. Aftertaste is bitter, but not overly so. A bit harsh in the aftertaste. A bit too much like pine cleanser. Alcohol is noticeable, but not overwhelming.

Overall, this one started great and ended so-so. I got used to the aftertaste about half way through. Good, but not great IIPA.

sacfly, Jan 20, 2006
Photo of rodrot
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%

In my quest to try as many double IPA's as possible(they recently became available in NC), this one was next in line. This beer pours an inviting reddish, amber color. It was slightly cloudy and I did notice a bit of sediment at the bottom of the bottle. To me, this is a good thing. Smell- not much aroma coming from the glass, just a whiff of hops and pine aromas. The taste was incredible. A plethora of flavors assaulting my taste buds. Citrus fruit, pine resin, perfumy flavors with bitter hops are present in every swallow with a malted milk/caramel taste to back up the bitterness of the hops. As the beer warmed, every aspect of this beer became more pronounced. I couldn't taste the alcohol, which is deceiving since it's 9.1% abv. The label on the bottle states that this beer is fit for the gods. I would have to agree. This was dessert in a bottle.

rodrot, Jan 17, 2006
Photo of denjen
3.53/5  rDev -14.5%

Dennis: The aroma off this is misleading, almost barley wine like, certainly not dry hopped. But that doesn't really reflect the true body. Pouring thick, almost like apricot nectar, this delivers with a high bitterness that hides the 9% alcohol very well. By the end of the glass though, it will sneak up on you. Very well done, enjoyable and hoppy in substance, but not show. The only real issue I have with this is the amount of sediment in the bottle was excessive.
Jen: This is a bitter, hoppy beer with a mild malt backbone, only to end with a smack of hops in your face! I don't really taste the alcohol, translation: goes down fairly smoothly. It has a dry finish with a nice light carbonation. Definitely drinkable!

denjen, Jan 14, 2006
Photo of Foxman
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%

It came to me a hazy but vivid amber orange, alive and a joy to behold. A finger of tight bright white head remained long before sinking to cosmos of fine surface bubbles. Sticky lacing lay taped to the inside of the glass.

The aroma drove a wind of grapefruit citrus and racey pine hops. Lurking underneath was a strong but subdued current of honey sweetness, as well as a very distant hint of alcohol.

Upon sipping, my mouth was inundated by a slathering of coniferous, piney sap and orchards of grapefruit, all redolent with strident hoppy presence. As the hoppiness slowly and grudgingly mellowed, though ever so slightly, a toasty caramel and berry malt sweetness struggled forth, momentarily allaying the bitterness and laying bare a soft nudge of alcohol. At the finish, the bittering hops held sway, blunting any further honey-sweet effect and wrapping the tongue in a long-lingering hops legacy. Yes, it is indeed a hopbomb, but it perches itself nicely at the top, like a winged horse, noble and sure, not once toppling over.

Medium bodied, it's slick with oily resins, coating and sticking, yet remaining creamy throughout. A bitter-dry glow lingers on the palate.

This is one wonderfully hopped, unpretentious beast. It is what it is, a hop delivery system with malt there to break the impact, though it's so well crafted that the end result is a thrilling ride on Pegasus' back. It's strong across the board, pretty to look at and wonderful to drink. The ABV never serves more than a brief glimpse, but it is very warming, and it's effects are very apparent after fniishing one. Now, this is sheer pleasure to drink, but the ABV, coupled with the enamel-stripping, palate-slaying hops, might limit the overall drinkablility. Still, in spite of those mere slings and arrows, this is one hoppy, high flying, broad-backed concoction, and I am already looking forward to my next brush with it.

Foxman, Jan 09, 2006
Photo of bashiba
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%

Poured a very cloudy brownish orange with a thick creamy 2 inch head.

Smell is dominated by Juniper and Grapefruit Hop Smells.

Taste is exactly what I would expect from a great Double IPA. Huge dominating Juniper and citrus hops. Very Good, no high alcohol taste at all.

Mouthfeel is farily full with an oily feel that really coates your tongue.

Drinkability is great on this one. Dangerously tasty.

bashiba, Jan 07, 2006
Photo of derrickt007
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%

Poured a nice copper color with an inch of white head. Looks very inviting. Smell is of hops citrus and pine hops, very good smell. Taste is consistant with the smell, hops and more hops. As it warms the malt backbone comes through a little more but this is truly a hopbomb. The hops just stay on your palate throughout this beer. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied and carbonation is just right. The drinkability is very high on this one as well partly because I am partial to double IPA's and IPA's and the alcohol is very well hidden.

derrickt007, Jan 07, 2006
Photo of ChrisA
4.68/5  rDev +13.3%

Hop bomb exploded in my house tonight. 22 ounce bomber poured a bright orange copper. Nice two finger head. Citrusy hop nose offing magic aromas. Super bitter. A hophead's dream. I'm glad I have been working out my palate this past year. Otherwise this would be too much. The piney hops really come through in the aftertaste. Nice lacing. I wanted this to be the best beer I have had in the past year. I may still have to defer to Great Divide's Fresh Hop Ale. Double IPA's are enjoyable but may still be way too much. Who am I kidding, this is amazing!!! Bomber really settles in nicely on the palate after about a half a pint. The hops really hide the high ABV%. Great way to start the New Year.

ChrisA, Jan 03, 2006
Photo of cubedbee
4.58/5  rDev +10.9%

On tap served in a pint glass, this comes out a pretty glowing amber, a finger of off-white head, excellent lacing. Nose is a solid dose of hops, citrus and grapefruit all the way, very nice and fragrant, allowing just a slight bready malt to come through. Taste is what I expected, bursting with juicy grapefruit, citrus, and floral hops, a caramel malt backbone doing an admirable job in balacing, a nice lingering hoppy bitter finish. Hops are big, but your tongue doesn't get scoured by them, and you're still tasting by the end of the glass. Mouthfeel is medium with a slightly slick and oily feel. This is an excellent DIPA, I look forward to trying more beers from Great Divide.

cubedbee, Jan 01, 2006
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%

This beer poured a honey amber with a high frothy tan head.

Smelled of honey, molasses, wheat, bread dough and bubblegum with only a mild but obvious hop undertone.

The flavor is delightfully understated with a smooth caramel and light molasses malt whose sweetness fades into an intense orange and pine dryness that finishes with a slight caramel and a pleasant dryness.

Mouth feel is medium bodied with a light smooth carbonation.

DarkerTheBetter, Dec 30, 2005
Photo of Wasatch
4.5/5  rDev +9%

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.

Wasatch, Dec 30, 2005
Photo of Derek
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%

A: Copper-bronze, a little darker than some. Tons of fluffy, rocky white head, insane retention, Beautiful lace. The cream of the crop! If I could give this a 5.5, I would!

S: Clean hop smell, with a little bready malt.

T: Sweet, bready and caramel malt is detectable up front... then the hops take over! Very citrousy and piney Pacific Northwest hops. Good bittersweet balance, isn't as bitter as some.

M: Rather full, creamy and slightly syrupy body. Moderately high carbonation (keeps producing head!).

D: Big, bold and heavy... drinkability suffers, but the flavour is great, so I'll still put it above average.

Derek, Dec 27, 2005
Photo of Terp96
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%

22 oz. bomber picked up at the Central Market in Plano, TX for $3.89.

I heard so much about Great Divide that I bought every 22 oz. I could get my hands on at the Central Market. This is my first one.

Pours a nice orange, hazy hue with a very nice head. The one finger thick head had exceptional retention throughout the glass. Incredible lacing.

Smell was a little more subdued than expected. Very citrusy. I could tell this one would be a little sweeter than some of the other hop bomb DIPAs out there. More grapefruit and orange than floral overtones in the nose.

Tastes very nice. Definite malt sweetness with a hoppy dry backbone. Again, a nice departure from the typical DIPAs.

Mouthfeel is excellent as well. A sour sweetness takes over after a few sips but this one lingers on the tongue long after the beer is gone. It leaves an imprint that you won't soon forget.

Drinkability is very nice for such a big beer. I couldn't find the alcohol anywhere. This one won't dry you out as much either. You can definitely go back for more. I will.

Terp96, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of crawfow
4.43/5  rDev +7.3%

1 PINT, 6 FL. OZ. Bomber

A: I was a little disappointed in the hazy appearance. No doubt this beer has a serious charge of dry hops which can be a detriment to clarity. However, as the beer warmed to 55 degrees, the clarity improved. Yup, captian, we have protien influenced chill haze present.

S: Sweet, Feathery Jesus...God and the baby Jesus, this beer smells like resiny, piney heaven with a slight aroma of malt goodness. I mean not a hint of the 9.1% ABV stated on the bottle.

T: The taste does not disappoint. Initial citrus, grapefruit flavor followed by a bit of caramel malt (I guess that's the only thing left after every other fermentable element was gobbled up). Finish is quite bitter...IBUs seem to be higher than the 85 IBUs stated on the bottle. Lingering bitterness that screams for a bite of gorgonzola cheese.

M: Well attenuated and a touch thin as expected. I like a little more body in my ideal IPA….nothing personal. To get that much alcohol you probably have to ferment every sugar available to the yeast.

D: I love this beer...but I could not knock back 2 or three of these in a sitting. This is definitely a sipping beer that should be accompanied with a meal or at least hors d'ourves.

O: This is the pinnacle of the Imperial IPA genre. Great Divide accomplished their objective: Make a big ole IPA that can be enjoyed by the novice or the most seasoned beer aficionado.

crawfow, Dec 15, 2005
Photo of RedHaze
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%

Pours a hazy coppery red color, with a thick two finger head that fades slowly to a nice cap that lasts throughout, and leaves lots of thick lacing.

Smell; tons of spicy, floral, citrusy hops dominate. There's a bit of a doughy malt presence, and a little nutty.

Taste; as with the smell the hops dominate. It's nice and spicy, with a piney, grapefruit hoppiness, and just enough of a malt presence to keep the bitterness from being too much. Mouthfeel is very rich and smooth and a bit thicker than other DIPA's I've had, and this is just disappearing from my glass. The alcohol can definitely catch up to you in a hurry though.

RedHaze, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of BrewMaster
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%

On tap at The Publick House in Brookline, MA.

Appearance: Cloudy reddish brown with an excellent creamy head. Great retention and lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Rich hop nose, spicy, meaty, earthy hop nose.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Toasty and roasty malt flavor. Not what I expected from a Colorado IPA but really good. Sweet and malty with some burnt sourness. Bitter sandy middle. This beer is not a hop monster of a beer that tears into the palate. I like that. Sweet with candy flavors and a piney, oily, resiny hop finish. The feel is smooth and clean, medium to nearly full bodied in texture.

Drinkability: For a DIPA it's not bitter but I appreciate the complexity and rich flavors. No single flavor is too strong or overpowering. Well balanced and tasty. In a lot of ways this reminds me of Alesmith IPA.

BrewMaster, Dec 03, 2005
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
Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 3,430 ratings.