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Ace Of Spades - Hopworks Urban Brewery

Not Rated.
Ace Of SpadesAce Of Spades

Educational use only; do not reuse.

85 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 85
Hads: 270
Avg: 4.17
pDev: 17.03%
Wants: 68
Gots: 24 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hopworks Urban Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Docer on 08-26-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Ace Of Spades Alström Bros
Reviews: 85 | Hads: 270
Photo of claspada
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice slightly hazy dark orange/amber colors with a nice inch or so of eggshell head with nice bubbles and lacing on the sides of the glass.
Aromas begin quite dank with heavy doses of resiny pine and grapefruit hops. Some blood orange and lemon rind in the background. There some sweet bready malts also emerge but are very light compared to the copious green hops. Smells a little "hippie-ish" if you catch my drift.
The tastes begin different than I expected. I get a lot of the citrus hops flavors up front with the sweet mandarin orange, blood orange and grapefruit dominate here (as opposed to the pine that dominated the nose). As it warms the pine begins to join the party and actually dominate the lingering bitter flavors along with the grapefruit. All the while there is a really nice bready and slightly caramel malt backbone to help balance out the huge hops here.
The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. The finish is sticky and resiny but not palate wrecking bitter. It's definitely not your beginner's DIPA for sure and it probably higher is the bitter department, but still finishes pretty crisp and clean but definitely drys out the palate and sticky throughout.
Overall this was the most hop dominant, bitter DIPA I have actually enjoyed. It borders on being a palate wrecker and probably is for you introductory craft beer drinker, but if you are a lover of West Coast Hops, this will be a definite winner for you. I definitely recommend this to any advanced DIPA drinker, if you dislike extreme resiny/sticky beers, look elsewhere. Do I need to have it again, no, but I am very very glad I did try it. Oregon is slowly overtaking California as my favorite West Coast beer state as they continue to churn out winners.

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Photo of dirtylou
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber. It's IPA Day, also, FU GABF

appearance: served in my great lakes chalice, bright orange-copper body, nice white film

smell: candied sugar, orange peel, sugared grapefruit, sweet malt

taste: potent - fiercely hopped, candied grapefruit rind, moderate to high bitterness, orange, pine resin, sticky and bitter

mouthfeel: big, heavily hopped, bitter

overall: enjoy this one - been through 2 bombers and a few drafts

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Photo of ccrida
4.02/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into my large St. Feuillien goblet, Ace of Spades is a bright bronze, with a small, tight off-white head leaving scattered, foaming lace. I either like very pale DIPAs, or red ones, like this, opposed to that thick, murky orange middle ground (in case you were interested).

Smell is bright citrus hops, fairly aggressive but not quite hitting me over the head with a hammer like a expected. Still, quite nice. Picked this out of the cooler from my local whole foods. The resinous stays strong through the bomber letting you know this is no joke.

Taste is similar to their regular IPA, but cranked up a notch. Bit maltiness, nice bright hops, but really not as exciting as I'd hopped. The alcohol is strong but clean, I guess I really just expected a more gratuitous hop display, but then again, this batch has been out for a month plus IIRC. Still, as I work through it, my respect grows. Probably just a bit jaded from the 10 Barrel IPA I had, expecting this would someone be double that!

Mouthfeel is oily, bone dry (ABV), tongue-coating resins, medium bodied.

Drinkability is okay, a tasty hop bomb, but strong enough for you to check yourself and take your time. Their regular IPA is my favorite available locally, on fresh draught. I'd like to try this one that way as well to get the complete experience, but for now, color me a bit disappointed. Maybe it's just the biggest IPAs in town have reached such hop saturation, that doubling the malt to crank up the alcohol can only take away from the purity.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.1/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to egrace84 for sharing this brew! Thanks Elliot!

poured into duvel tulip.

Appearance: Golden orange bodied beer almost getting to an amber color. 2 fingers of white head that drops down quickly.

Smell: This beer smells of super potent pine and grapefruit hops. Smells really resinous.

Taste: This beer is a hop monster! High end of moderately bitter almost tipping the scales at high bitterness. Brutually big pine, grapefruit rind and more citrisy flavors. You dont get much from the malts in this beer the hops just overtake everything. The bitterness just lingers around for quite a while after taking a sip!

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. This beer is oily and resinous, but has a dry finish to it. ABV is hidden well.

Overall: If you are new to hops stay away. This beer will destroy you... For a true dedicated hophead that likes a big bitter hoppy beer that gets down to business fast... its a good choice. Its a hoppy palate wrecker!

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Photo of Rutager
4.07/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours a slightly cloudy gold-amber with a finger of sticky, pale yellow head.

Smell. Caramel and toasty grains, sweet grapefruit, honey and some tangerine.

Taste. Pine sap, bitter pink grapefruit rind, orange zest, floral grassy hops. Alcohol there, but not too offensive.

Mouthfeel. Close to a full body with smooth, medium-light carbonation. A little syrupy and a little warm.

Overall. A decent sipping beer. Good hop punch and bitterness.

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Photo of gford217
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to hopburster for this 22oz bottle.

Pours deep, clear amber with a creamy egg-shell head that recedes quickly to a soapy cap leaving only bits of lacing on the sides.

Lots of citrus in the nose with grapefruit and pineapple, takes on a sweet juicy character. There is a light malt sweetness in there but it takes a backseat to the juicy hops.

Pithy, bitter grapefruit right up front on the tongue with a hefty alcohol burn that lingers through the finish as well. There is enough malty sweetness to keep things balanced but the bitterness of the oily hops is what I'll remember in the taste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and really stick with hop juice. Soft carbonation and a spicy alcohol coating on the palate.

For those of you who like their DIPAs pithy with grapefruit and don't mind some alcohol presence, this is a really nice beer. Since I put myself in that category, I have to say I enjoyed this one.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #41 (Jun 2010):

Hop-hazed pale amber, it's not lacking head retention, that's for sure. Ruby red grapefruit and blood orange rind from the hops; alcohol shows some fruit and malt shows caramel, making for an awesome aroma. What you smell is what you taste, but add in a heavy hand of bitterness. Tobacco and leather. A scraping bitterness that's fresh and pungent. Alcohol warms and lends a tropical fruit flavor. Bitter end with some trace maltiness. This beer is brewed to style and pulls no punches. Superb.

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Photo of andrenaline
4.17/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy copper colour, finger of soapy head with decent retention and no real lacing.

S - Sweet pine and citrus, sweet lemon iced tea and a touch of mustiness.

T - Sweet citrus off the top, with a slightly metallic oily resin on the finish. Caramel undertones linger alongside a solid bitterness. The ABV is incredibly well hidden.

M - Medium bodied ale that goes down smooth and finishes with a touch of dryness.

O - Fantastic DIPA with some great flavours and delicious hop/malt balance. Glad I took a bottle for a spin but at $15 a piece, I doubt I'll take down another.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.45/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When asking Craig at 99 Bottles which of the local IPA/DPA’s I had to pick up he quickly mentioned this as one of the choices. I really am glad he did. Shared this with a buddy last night and really enjoyed it.

Soapy off white head builds aggressively as you pour the beer. Very bright and clear brass/amber color with just a touch of carbonation escaping to the surface. Tons of soapy lacing clings to the glass.

Aroma was fantastic and bursting with juicy resinous hops. There was a freshness that was terrific and a melding of some bright citrus scents with some green grassy notes and a moment of floral pine.

Pretty complex flavor profile. All about the hops, but just below the surface there were some neat malty things happening. I was getting some almond at times, which I still can’t explain to myself. But it was very nice. There was a sense of the elevated abv, but in no way was this “hot?

A sticky, juicy mouth feel. Bright and fresh.

H.U.B. always does a great job and this beer is no exception. Excellent DPA

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Photo of Florida9
4.12/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Darker amber in color with some orange highlights. Forms a rather smallish off-white head that reduces down to a creamy surface coating. Some light lacing. Clear.

S: Predominantly pone with some notes of peach, orange, and mango. Caramel malts and alcohol hang out in the background.

T: Starts off both sweet and bitter. Lots of pine with some pine resin and a little earthiness. Bitterness is strong, but fleeting.

M: On the heavier side of medium with good carbonation. Surprisingly clean in the mouth.

O: A good to very good IIPA, offering a nice balance of aroma, hoppy flavor and bitterness. Not overdone at all. Very nice. Easily drinkable.

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Photo of KTCamm
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a perfect pint glass. 1/7

Pours medium amber, cloudy, some foam on top. Lots of lacing. Spiky pine citrus nose that bursts from the glass. Light sweet malt, subdued floral paired with a pine back.. All expertly balanced below the malt. Light and powerful. Excellent.

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Photo of Tucquan
4.31/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Had this on 2014-01-01 in Columbia, PA

A - Mostly opaque dirty orange with a 1/4-finger off-white head and moderate lacing.

S - Fresh red grapefruit, pine, hop cone floral. A nice potpourri of hop aromas. It's not real strong but it is very pleasant.

T - Nice burst of orange citrus flesh and zest up front, light but balancing bread and caramel malt flavor, flavorful leafy-vegetal/tobacco. Finishes at first like an alcohol-infused orange candy drop but this quickly yields to significant but not overpowering bitterness. These flavors really work for me.

M - Thick body and light carbonation. Syrupy (not cloying), resinous, lightly prickly, substantial, coats-the-mouth in a great way.

O - I really enjoyed this holiday-gifted beer. Very satisfying and a great way to say hello to 2014. This is my favorite so far from this brewery.

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Photo of harrymel
3.8/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Vintage 2011, unknown bottle date:

A: Hazy toasted apricot ale is topped with less than single finger of white foam. This falls in moments to a sheet of the same. No lacing.

S: Lots of sharp citrus notes here. The amarillo's in this are a bit overdone IMO. Lots of grapefruit, some peaches, cat piss and onion. Can't say I'm impressed, but don't feel disappointed really. Just kinda, meh.

T: Super sweet. Super bitter. It's hard to address, but it is certainly both really bitter and really sweet simultaneously. The bitterness is resiny, citric peels, spicy (think raw peppercorn). The sweetness is peaches, malts, caramels, pralines. This is quite a complex IIPA.

M: Medium on heavy for the style with moderate carbonation. Dry finish. Not quite what I look for in the style, but certainly fitting for the beer's personality.

O: I'm really torn on this beer. The appearance is far from impressive. The smell is not particularly good, almost dislike. The mouthfeel is forgettable. The taste, the taste is really nice. I would like to see more reviews on this beer to see if there is something I'm missing about this, if I got a chill haze beer, or what. It's good, not great and far from exceptional. Adjust the aromatic hop additions and we'll see how this beer improves.

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Photo of aquazr1
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy golden color with a white head. Some residual lacing in the glass. Nose is pine and citrus. Tastes is well balanced if slightly sweet from the malts.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
4.02/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shared this with my BA in crime andrenaline
A - slightly hazy copper orange, thumb of head with decent retention, not much lacing to speak of
S - piney and bright citrus, light herbal note and mild woodiness
T - nice citrus hop start, then a herbal and resiny charater, sweet caramel malt backbone throughout, and lightly musty
M - Medium bodied, smooth start that finishes with a pleasant dry bitter, with sweetness lingering
O - a very solid double IPA, classic flavour and very easy drinking with well hidden alcohol, worth a try but probably not a regular for me

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Photo of seeswo
3.58/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a reddish-golden light brown. Nose is tropical hops, malt sweetness and a bit of booziness. Another malt forward DIPA, this one uses the malt sweetness to balance against the juicy, grapefruit hops. Not as much of a tropical hop bomb as some beers, but the balance works pretty well. Again, my preference is for the malt to be in balance or trailing the hop flavor in a DIPA. This is a solid contributor to the spacious 2nd tier of good, but not elite DIPAs. This one just narrowly misses a really nice balance - demanding a bit more hop flavor to really excel. The mouthfeel is nice - a good head, good carbonation and some hop stickiness hangs out on the tongue, but isn't excessive. Overall, I could really see this beer potentially being fantastic when super fresh, but that is not what is in front of me. I can only assume that this is fresh enough, but with some additional hop flavor, it could really excel.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.37/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass. A generous gift from ramnuts. Thanks, Frank! Shared at a tasting.

A: Pours a clear amber with some tall white head. Retention is short, leaving a thin collar in short order.

S: It's slightly solventy, with an overall barleywine aroma. Pine hops, some floral perfume, and a fair amount of grapefruit rind.

T: Following the nose, there's a lot of pine backed by perfumey roses. I pick up grapefruit peel, orange rind, and tangerine. Strong caramel malt in the backbone.

M: Surprisingly solventy. Good flavors, but the balance leaves something to be desired. I pick up a lot of bitterness in the aftertaste.

D: Granted, I had this toward the tail end of a tasting, but it felt so heavy and boozy that I coudln't bring myself to finish my glass. Definitely rough on the palate. As far as West Coast DIPAs go, it's pretty skippable.

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Photo of brewandbbq
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle.

Pours clear gold with a one inch head of beige. A few streaks and dots of lacing with a partial skimcoat throughout the glass.

Aromatics are fairly pungent but not abundantly floral or hop-laden. Heavy on the pine with traces of grapefruit coming after, with ripe malt and crisp gypsum following through.

Medium bodied with a crisp but tacky mouthfeel.

Plenty of zingy, bracing alphas start the palate, with plump malt in support. Loads of resinous pine with grapefruit oil under, and a mild sting from the bitterness.
A slightly drying mineralness keeps the sweet malt in check, as does the stiff bitterness and bright alcohol.

Finishes with a lingering, chaulky bitterness, a sting of high alpha hops, and a warmth in the throat.

Tasty beer. I prefer a much more pungent, tropical, floral nose, and more hop complexity on the palate. A pretty straightforward IIPA.

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Photo of snaotheus
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a large snifter shaped glass

Pours brownish amber, pretty clear, very little head, but looks like a lot of small, slow, fine carbonation going on in there. Smell is honeysuckle sweet with a lot of piney hops, some orange blossom floral. Smells good, but a little muted (maybe not the beer's fault -- I'm a little congested).

Taste is very bitter, lots of grapefruit rind flavor, overpowers most everything else. There's some of the floral and honeysuckle sweetness in there somewhere. Opens up a little as you get into and it warms up a bit.

Mouthfeel is quite dry. Overall, a good beer.

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Photo of zeledonia
4.09/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brought a bottle back from a recent trip to Oregon. Drank it July 22, reviewed from notes. Wish I knew the age, but I can't find a date on it anywhere.

Pours a cloudy amber color, thick and syrupy, with a minimal off-white head. Head retention and lacing both pretty low.

Smells strongly of fruity and flowery Cascade hops, with a heavy malt dose underneath. This smells like fresh leaf hops, which is amazing. But it could us some more dimensions to it; as is it's a strong dose of one hop variety.

Taste is not quite as good as the smell. A balance of malt and hops, with heavy caramel malts. Quite rich, a rounded richness that stretches through for quite a while. The hops break through late, but aren't really that strong in the taste. They're present as a potent bitterness, and as a little bit of fruity lightness. Finish is long, with a mix of bitter and sweet.

Mouthfeel is heavy and sticky. Long finish.

A strong, balanced, malty DIPA. I like it, though I would appreciate some more hop presence in the flavor. All that fruity, floral deliciousness that I smell isn't as strong in the taste. But it's quite good all-around, with a nice bitter finish. Probably the best organic beer I've had yet.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle generously shared by El Douchous, or as we call him around here, Duane.

Pours a slightly cloudy medium orange with slight retention and some stick.

Smells of caramelized apples

Tastes much the same with a lingering bitter rind finish along with smack of blood orange. Malts serve as a healthy support system by propping up the firm fruits.

Carbonation on the low end with a medium bodies feel makes this drink a bit syrupy

Overall, a pretty good double

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Photo of draheim
4.23/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a tulip. Pours a crystal clear amber w/ a 2-finger sudsy off-white head, good retention, lots of sticky lace.

Aroma is grapefruit, pine, and earthy tropical fruits.

Taste is acidic grapefruit rind, pine, mango, peach, and booze, balanced by a blend of caramel and pale malts. Resinous, sticky, and very bitter.

Mouthfeel is slick and a little oily.

Overall a good strong DIPA, perhaps just a little more malt-forward than I prefer. Well-crafted.

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Photo of vkv822
3.99/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into snifter.

The appearance is a clear amber with slight copper hues and a nice foamy off-white head.
The aroma is a delicious mix of fruity citrus, resiny pine and floral hops. The flavor is similar to the nose, though a nice bit of malt sneaks into the beginning, but is soon taken over by strong hop notes. There is a decent amount of alcohol presence, but does not become over-powering. The mouthfeel is oily and medium bodied with a very nice amount of carbonation. This is a very drinkable DIPA, though it does seem a bit stronger than 9% alcohol.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.42/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a rich sunset amber into a tulip with a finger of quick-receding off-white head. Juicy aroma of grapefruit, orange, and pine with just the slightest hint of boozy warmth.

Moderate carbonation and a thick, syrupy, resinous mouthfeel. Lots of grapefruit and orange citrus up front followed by just the right amount of sweet caramel malt that lingers for quite a while before the pine bitterness shows up towards the finish.

A little sweet but with plenty of hops to balance and just enough alcohol warmth to keep things interesting. Really a treat.

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Photo of ElGordo
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 22oz bottle into a Gordon tulip glass. Body is a a pretty orange-amber color, topped by just a thin ring of creamy head that doesn't leave much lacing. Huge aroma of hops, hops, and more hops. Grapefruit and weed are the primary notes, balanced by a bit of sweet caramel malt.
Palate is sweet up front, the caramel malt blending with a slightly vinous hop character. The citrusy character comes through towards the back of the tongue, bringing out grapefruit and weed. A decent amount of heat makes its way through on the finish and builds long after the swallow.
Body is thick and full, alternately sticky and creamy. For something this super-hoppy and strong, it goes down pretty easily. One of my favorite brews each year, the Ace is difficult to trump.

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Ace Of Spades from Hopworks Urban Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 85 ratings.