BIG HAPI India Black Ale - Lawson's Finest Liquids

Not Rated.
BIG HAPI India Black AleBIG HAPI India Black Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

202 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 202
Reviews: 51
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 10.1%
Wants: 26
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lawson's Finest Liquids visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 02-06-2009

This dark and devious brew reflects a resinous and sticky fusion of intense bitterness, big roasted barley flavors, and powerful dank aromas. Made with HUGE additions of five hop varieties and seven malts to create a bold flavor profile.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 202 | Reviews: 51
Reviews by nycwinter:
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.31/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

7.5%ABV.per bottle label.My second of Lawson's wares I have had today.Poured a deep dark chocolate brown with a fluffy deep near mocha colored beige head that settles into a frothy mass after two half rings of lace left behind.Resinious hops,char,earth,and bitter chocolate notes in the nose, a nice mix.Great complex flavors going on with huge resiny and citric hops that are sharp and pretty in your face,a bit of bitter chocolate and alot of raw roast to compliment the hops.Wow a great IBA it has everything going on,top notch right here.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz red waxed bomber poured into a magic hat tulip.

Pours a nice deep dark stout like color with a small brown head. Nose is really fresh and hoppy, floral and a bit roasty/coffee as well.

Taste is bitter from the hops and from the roasty malt. It's pretty damn cool to have a stout looking beer that tastes like an ipa. It's very heady and floral but not really fruity at all. Somewhat light mouthfeel. It's got a bit on graininess on the finish.

Photo of ehammond1
3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle (2012)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, whartontallboy!

A stunningly gorgeous black IPA. Black throughout, with a moderately sized, persistent, brown head that leaves the glass completely messy with lines and irregular spiderwebs of lacing. Picture perfect!

Very nice, interesting, and evolving aroma. The initial and most powerful aromas were of pine and tree sap. After some warming and agitation, big notes of roast and ground coffee shine through. Complex, refined, interesting, and just damn good.

The flavor isn't quite as complex (or good) as the aroma would indicate. The pine flavors are somewhat muted, alongside very nice complementary roast and mildly bitter coffee. Good, but not great.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. An easy drinker.

A very nice, dare I say classic, black IPA. There are better examples, but I'm forever grateful that I was able to try this.

Photo of 05Harley
3.86/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Purchased at The Valley Players Theater in Waitsfield, VT during the Farmers Market on 3/21/12
(225 calories)

Price - $9.99/bomber

This one pours as you would expect (near black) with a fluffy chocolate/mocha colored head. Heavy lacing outlines the glass showcasing it's sticky talent. Each sip rejuvenates the creamy covering and picasso like lacing.

Aroma is rich in roasted malts followed by spicy, citrus hops. The hops have noticeably faded a bit from earlier bottles but still make a presence. As it warms the fruity scent of pineapple becomes more prominent.

The flavor is head strong in roasted malt but the hops are nipping at it's toes with pineapple, piney resin and a faint taste of grapefruit. A noticeable aftertaste of coffee grounds closes things out.

The body has a medium feel and starts out slick & creamy. Moderate carbonation which is dead on for the style. A lingering bitter/dry aftertaste can be atributed to both the burnt malts and piney hops.

Overall a pretty good example of the style. I rated it based on an average of all of my bottles dating back to the end of the March. It's a black IPA so in my experience it has a better shelf life than just a straight up IPA.

Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black IPA with a good roast aroma, black bodied with a big bubbly head. Piny hop taste-Chinook, Cluster, and Amarillo. Medium mouthfeel. Not aggressive, more like a black ale with significant hopping.My first LL, thanks to John's most excellent tracking.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to Kyle for this one. This has actually been re-branded Big Hoppy instead of Big Hapi (I get the reference. 22oz foiled and capped bomber into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter.

Pours a slowly cascading 2 finger light mocha colored head with good retention. Beer is pitch black but thin. Lacing is thick and web-like with excellent stick. A real nice looking brew!

Nose is exactly like you'd expect. Roast, dark chocolate and cocoa mixed with citrus, papaya, and tropical fruit hop character. Moderately aromatic. Really good actually.

Opens roasted malt and smoky hop bitterness. Some espresso in the middle and end mixed with notes of citrus, pineapple, and grapefruit. Coffee and hop bitterness at the finish with the same lingering aftertaste. I want to like this... but I don't.

Light bodied with ample carbonation. Prickly and lively in the mouth and goes down dry. Finishes very messy with a long, lingering aftertaste. Decent.

This really isn't a bad beer. This just really isn't my style either. The prominent roast, cocoa, and coffee characters just don't work with the citrus hop component in my opinion. Again, not a bad beer but I wouldn't revisit it.

Photo of mikey711
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to stowehop for this one.

A: Deep brown, with some light comin through at the bottom of the glass. Nice carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass. Very nice head that is about an inch thick with very good retention

S: Grassy hop aroma and chocolately sweetness

T: This one is a bit past its prime, but there is still a decent hoppiness present. the chocolately aspect is very nice as well

M: Very nice body on this one and very smooth

D: A pint or two is fine

Photo of nickd717
3.51/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bomber thanks to Arbitrator. OMG rare, it says so on the bottle! Lawson's is trying to be quite the hype machine I see. Now let's start with the name. Like "Alfred A. Hopf," this is a rather clever hop pun, playing off the Red Sox great (well he was great, not so much anymore) David Ortiz a.k.a. Big Papi. Clever, guys. Will we be seeing Jachoppy Ellsbury, Clay Buchhops, Jonathan Hopelbon, or Hideki Hopajima any time soon? I hope so.

Dark brown in color with a large cascading tan head. Good lacing.

Earthy hop aroma, with wet leaves and some substantial roasty notes.

Roasty flavor with slight bitter cocoa along with citrusy and earthy hops. Rather bitter.

Medium-bodied and dry as hell, very resinous, with softer carbonation.

Pretty nice IBA, but I've certainly had better as of late.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle to a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Dark brown. Small brown head. Good retention and lacing.

Smell - Hoppy. Citrusy with a touch of grapefruit. Just a hint of the coffee malt behind it all.

Taste - Hops up front. Lots of juicy citrus hops. Bitterness overwhelms the chocolate malt that comes next. Chocolate and coffee make a brief appearance. Loads of bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel - So bitter. Delicious, but not pleasant to drink. Really detracts from the whole experience of the beer.

Overall - Good flavor, too bitter. Tough to call it really good, but the flavors are nice.

Photo of smakawhat
3.71/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured on tap at Farm House Tap & Grill.

A very dark brown walnut body, but also with a large dark red color to it. Simple cream tan head fades, but always leaves a good collar while drinking, and with a decent amount of lacing.

Very muted nose, however there's much of a char ripping carbon character to this much like a good porter. Doesn't particularly feel hopy either.

Taste improves. Large carbon char action with a hop roasty bitterness on the finish. Texture and body feels a little wet but luckily doesn't detract or take away anything in the palate. Large on charing porter character, with a good hoppy finish that balances well strangely.

Overall It's a little one dimensional, but an impressive big dimension. I can see myself drinking this again and wanting another, but I know I've had better.

Photo of jegross2
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewing the Big Hapi Black IPA from Lawson's Finest Liquids.
Score: 90

Unknown vintage bottle, though I suspect it is from late March/early April. Served in a Goose Island taster glass and enjoyed on 05/11/12. Review is from notes.

Appearance: Pours a black coffee color with brown highlights atop the glass when held up to light. There was a little bit of tan head at pour, but lacing/retention is difficult to discern here. Looks like a stout. 4/5

Smell: Roasty coffee, cocoa, milk chocolate, toasted malt and piney hops. A little brown sugar. Smells a lot like a roasty porter with a hoppy twist. 4/5

Taste: Roasted chocolate, milk chocolate, bitter coffee and raw chocolate. Bitter pine, lactose and creamy chocolate malt. 4/5

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, low carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel. Bitter, roasty and slightly acidic finish. 4/5

Overall: A nice roasty porter with an IPA twist. This is quite unlike most black IPA I have had, which are usually IPA-forward beers with porter/stout twists.

Recommendation: Fans of roasty porters and IPA's should give this one a whirl.

Pairings: Chocolate chip cookies.

Cost: $8.99 for a 22 oz (bomber) bottle.

Photo of angrybabboon
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed 6/20/12

Appearance: Dark brown, with some clear brown around the edges - pours with nicely sized light brown head, fades to some spots and streaks

Smell: Dark malts and hops - slightly burnt and roasty - burnt coffee beans, dark chocolate, chocolate malts, and cocoa - some earth, dirt - citrus (grapefruit and orange), and some pine - pretty balanced, heavy on the hops with a strong malt profile

Taste: Simply great for the style - burnt, roasted malts - dark chocolate, burnt coffee, very roasted, dry chocolate malts, cocoa, earth - some sweetness, but mostly dry - grapefruit pith and some orange, pine, resin, and some grass - burnt bitterness and hoppy bitterness, very bitter overall - flavorful and very interesting

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nicely carbonated, slightly sticky, smooth

Overall: A great Black IPA

This beer manages to have a ton of hops and a complex malt bill yet not be extreme. It's pretty balanced. If it were a bit less bitter, it would be extremely drinkable. Regardless, I feel very lucky to have acquired a bottle. Cheers to the ladies at Craft Beer Cellar for getting Mr. Lawson himself to do a tasting on 6/2/12.

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a perfect pint.

3.5 A: Black color. One and a half fingers of frothy/creamy light brown head. Retention is good and a short ring of lacing is left.

3.5 S: Formitable roastiness with notes of molasses. Citrusy and earthy hops with emphasis on orange, grapefruit, and pineapple. Not bad, but the aromas don't flow together that well.

3.5 T: Taste is like the nose. Lots of roast, some molasses, and some caramel. Orange, grapefruit, pineapple, and earthiness fromt he hops. Lower bitterness from the hops, which I think is a must for the style, so at least they got that right. Again, decent.

3.5 M: Lighter medium to medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Decently creamy.

3.5 D: Not a huge fan of the style, but this one isn't bad. A little better than average for the style.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Picked this up at The Warren Store the morning of Night of the Funk 2010. Poured into a tulip and shared with bmanning, Amyliz4, and Heather. Batch 163, Bottle 17.

Pour is a very dark brown with an off white head. Plenty of light carbonation bubbles on top. Very nice lacing. The nose is very, very strong aromas of piney, resinous hops with a pretty good amount of roasted malt to back it up.

The taste is all about the pine and resin with a bit of darkly-roasted malt. The feel is extremely dry and bitter. Just an incredibly bitter beer. Even with that, it's still quite drinkable.

Photo of jlindros
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tap at prohibition pig

Fluffy darker colored 1 finger creamy head fades slowly with nice lacing pitch black beer.

Nose nice piny spicy earthy hops, done darker malts, creamy malts, dark chocolate, caramel, hint if roast.

Taste starts creamy with milk chocolate and bakers choc, luscious, malty, malted milk ball, caramel, light bready malts, then hops, earthy light spicy piny hops, hint of coffee and roasted malt, chewy. Finish is creamy malty, little sticky and syrupy, fairly biter, earthy piny lingering hops and light cocoa and caramel lingering.

Mouth is med bodied, good carb, fluffy and bit creamy.

Overall nice, great hops and malts combined, blend well, not too sweet too hoppy or boozy.

Photo of Rifugium
4.23/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First had: on tap at the Farmhouse, Burlington, VT

How could I turn down a Lawson's on tap? Poured into a 6oz. stem glass, a dark, dark chocolate brown with a creamy, rocky tan head; decent retention and lacing. Typical dark ale aroma heavy with piney hops, and hints of greasy cocoa. Taste was oily, resinous up front, with a surprising infusion of delectable coffee mid-palate, finishing with more pine, grass, citrus peel, and charred wood. Quite complex in the taste, and probably the best of the style that I've had so far. Medium-bodied, quite drinkable, though perhaps one serving is enough for anyone. Very nicely done overall.

Photo of AgentZero
3.83/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Black beer with an off-white head that dissipated to a ring. Great chunks and spot lacing on the sides.

S - Flooded with cascadian hops, and a great malt backbone. I'm usually not a fan of Black IPAs, but this smells a little less "black" than many.

T - Very bitter cascadian hops taste, hop forward and malt forward at the same time. The sugar manages to be not too sugary and therefore not hot. I like this beer, but it takes quite the effort to overcome the bitterness.

M - Solid, medium bodied. Moderate carbonation.

D - It's good, but it's so bitter it can get hard to get down. I like this beer, surprisingly.

Photo of sweemzander
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz. bottle poured into a snifter. Thanks for the bottle Eric!

(A)- Pours just about pitch black in color. Some good tan froth and lacing formed.

(S)- A great blast of juicy citrus meets a mellow roasted malt component. Lime and orange citrus with the underlying sweet roasted malts is definitely inviting.

(T)- Tons of pine meets a subtle citrus and roasted components. TONS of pine.

(M)- Its quite bitter with all of the pine in there (was chinook used?). Otherwise its fairly well balanced. Easily the most hoppy black IPA I have had.

(O)- If the pine was toned down just a bit and the citrus opened up more, this would be just killer, but yeah, holy pine batman!

Photo of UA8
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Long and short on this one it falls right in with Iniquity and Sublimely self righteous.

Pours dark black with a slightest bit of light passing through. Head is minimal but light tan in color. The nose and palate on this one echo each other nicely with hints of citrus hop and rind bitterness pairing well with dark roasted malts that lend a hint of sweetness. Mouth feel is solid with medium body and carbonation.
All together maybe not my favorite beer ever but one that does everything well and would be something I would greatly enjoy sessioning.

Photo of tobelerone
4.17/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Prototypical Black IPA, Cascadian ale, whatever you want to call it. Jet black body with a nice cap of tan foam that settles slowly and leaves strong lacing. Vividly hoppy aroma, lots of grapefruit and other citrus, some piney notes, strong roasted component.

Flavor follows the nose. Breaks no new ground, just nails the style beautifully. Again there’s incredibly fresh and vivid citrusy hops reeking of grapefruit, some pine and resins; lots of roasted malt character. Almost charred. Strong but not overbearing bitterness that lingers in the aftertaste. Dry finish.

Medium body and carbonation, exceptionally smooth and creamy in the mouth. Well done, my favorite of this style to date. On tap at the Farmhouse in Burlington; much better than the bottled version, IMHO.

Photo of abuliarose
4.41/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 163 bottle 4, poured into a bulbous pint glass revealing extra tall thick crema head over a deep murky brown body. Lots of head, lots of intense floral and citrus hop smell. Lots of pretty lacing.Maybe the slighest hint of caramel under all those hops.

Tastes dark, rich and roasty with a nice hop presence. Very bitter finish, very grassy and clean. Thick grapefruit rind character. Mouthfeel is smooth and a little drying with a full-bodied volume-adding tingly carbonation. Very flavorful, very drinkable.

Overall it's extremely well-executed if you're into super bitter IPAs but want a little something different.

Photo of Rheaume17
4.46/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Just picked this up fresh from the Waitsfield Farmers Market. Poured into a Lawson's tulip glass.

Appearance - Poured a very rich, black color. A nice think inch of light brown foamy head. Good lacing continued throughout the session.

Smell - Very aromatic from the bottle to the glass. I smell hints of pine as well as other earthy scents. I also smell notes of grapefruit. You can also get a good whiff of the malt which smells rather sweet, but not overpowering.

Taste - Just as it smelled. The earthy notes are the first to hit with a nice backbone of that sweet malt. Lots of hoppy goodness. The aftertaste has a slight citrus flavor, predominantly grapefruit.

Overall - Another amazing offering from Lawson's. This is definitely a great beer for a little something different to try. Luckily, I have 3 more of these!

Photo of stakem
3.67/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bomber poured into a matching Lawsons snifter. The brew appears black in color with a dark khaki head. Some spotty and patchy lacework stick to the glass and a swirl effortlessly revives a long lasting cap.

The smell is quite vegetative. Very dank and catty that is herbacious with pine and roast. Some sulfur pokes through with a swirl but this is one dank bugger, very herbal with little hop restraint.

The taste is bitter and roasty like coffee and earth. Some vegetative quality like the aroma suggested along with a pine-like resinous feel with plenty of hop flavors of herbs catty piss, grassy and more vegetative quality. Lots of pine resin emerges as it warms with a rough acrid bite of roast and alcohol.

This is a medium to fuller bodied brew with a moderate amount of carbonation. Big bitterness seemingly coming from the roast of the grain as well as hops but with hops going a little overboard. I could see fans of the style really going bonkers for this but I think it was a bit rough and over the top.

Photo of HopHead84
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

5/26/2012

Snifter.

A: Black with an inch of frothy, bubbly light brown sea foam. Very good retention and lots of lacing left clinging to the glass.

S: Smells like the bowels of the earth with accompanying pine resin and grapefruit flesh and rind. I get some damp forest dirt with pine needles. There's an effusive and pervasive marijuana note. Chocolate blends with lightly roasted grains.

T: A nicely balanced Black IPA. There's a smooth moderate herbal, piney, and grapefruity bitterness equipoised by chocolate and roasted notes. The finish is dry and hoppy with lingering chocolate.

M: Medium body with upper medium carbonation. The mouthfeel is sticky, silky, and creamy.

Overall: A nice Black IPA with an expressive aroma. Not quite as good as Lawson's pale hoppy beers, but nice and definitely worth trying.

Photo of JMScowcroft
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lawson's Finest Liquids - BIG HAPI India Black Ale, poured into a Fiddlehead snifter.

Look - Pours a dark black with an inch sized soapy head that dissipates quickly but leaves an abundance of lacing.

Smell - Dark malts with lop hop profile. Mostly smoked malts, some dark fruits.

Taste - Roasted malts for sure with some piney hops on top. Finishes a mix of roast and piney hops but charred. The char character calms down as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel - Not boozy in the least bit. Light-medium body with moderate carbonation. Doesn't rest overly charred.

Overall - Solid black IPA that improves as it warms. Not my favorite but solid nonetheless.

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BIG HAPI India Black Ale from Lawson's Finest Liquids
89 out of 100 based on 202 ratings.