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Hopageddon Imperial IPA - Napa Smith Brewery

Not Rated.
Hopageddon Imperial IPAHopageddon Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

55 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 55
Hads: 329
Avg: 3.6
pDev: 38.06%
Wants: 12
Gots: 52 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Napa Smith Brewery visit their website
California, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: corby112 on 02-08-2012

144 IBUs not for the faint of heart with hopiness
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 55 | Hads: 329
Photo of Huffaroma
5/5  rDev +38.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I am still in shock by this beer in the amount of hop that it contains within it. And being at 144 IBUs it blew me away. The funny thing was my wife and others tried a sip and looked disgusted at me for how bitter it was, while I sat back and laughed.

Appearance, nice roasted orange color with a nice bubbly head that was 1/2" thick.

Smell, great notes of grapefruit and peaches. Some pine notes and roasted grain in the background.

Taste, upfront almost a grapefruit apple flavor and all of a sudden it bites you and doesn't leave with the extreme hop. It was awesome to have something that wasn't so sweet with a imperial IPA and had some good strong bite to it. Its what I look forward to.

Mouthfeel, great carbonation and a little richness add to this beers power.

Overall fantastic and will go back for more. Probably my favorite Imperial IPA so far.

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Photo of pat61
4.9/5  rDev +36.1%

Grassy, minty, herbal, floral hop nose with fresh grain and malt in the background. Pours moderately hazy copper amber with a 1” finely bubbled off-white foam cap that leaves thick, clumpy lace. Melon and perhaps tropical fruit starts a march of hop flavors across the tongue followed by citrus and citrus rind and a sprinkle of white pepper. The malt backbone brings light caramel, biscuit and hints of fresh grain and light malt flavors. Long lingering hop bitterness suggests citrus rind seasoned with a dash of gentian and a light malt sweetness that leaves a little sugary stickiness on the lips. Surprisingly well balanced. Very creamy texture supports a big bold body.

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Photo of comadiv
4.9/5  rDev +36.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Would love to be able to find this beer locally. Tried it at Epcot Disney and was blown away by the aroma and the smoothness. It says 144 IBU's but I didn't taste it... and I'm very critical of bitterness just for shock factor. The best beer I've ever tasted... just wish I could get ahold of more!

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Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.55/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

An ode to the hop. This beer is probably more like sucking on a hop cone than any I've had before. The color is "fiery" orange and clear with a micro-bead, orange-tinted head on top.

Of course, with a micro-bead head, the carbonation is going to be silky smooth. The body is moderate - light for a DIPA.

The flavor is of hops. If you have ever smelled raw hops, this beer will bring you fond memories of the leafy greens. Hop flavor is almost brought to a peak by the high alcohol content that remains neutral in this brew. Hops range from floral and citric to piney and dank with a focus on the citric/floral hops.

I assume this was bottled 1-5 months ago, but cannot find a bottling date. My first Napa Smith brew and one that leads me to seek out more.

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Photo of GRG1313
4.32/5  rDev +20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(Reviewing since it should have a score and this one made a nice impression. Otherwise, I continue to use "Hads.")

Pours a dark honey gold with a short/thin white head.

Very assertive papaya/quava "estered" nose with big pineapple undertones.

Mouthfeel is rich and creamy with really good balance.

Flavors are bright, bold, assertive and nicely fruity/bitter. A bright appealing flavor profile that is full of fruit, almost a sweet front palate, that goes to rich malt that goes to a giant bitter grapefruit oil finish.

Probably the best effort, to date in my opinion, from Napa Smith. This is a true Imperial IPA and, having tasted it room temperature, the flavors really come out. Nice; defintely will have again. Good with food but is sufficiently big and bold to be a sipper. The more I taste during these notes the more I like it.

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Photo of jondeelee
4.29/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Hopageddon opens to a surprisingly sweet nose for a 144 IBU Imperial IPA, the notes redolent with pink grapefruit, sugary rosewater, rose petals, and a sweet arrangement of fruit esters, including berry, cherry, orange, peach, and apricot, with darker fig and plum beneath for added complexity and nuance. The hops do have some bite, with lemon oil, pine resin, and mint adding bitterness, these notes blending very well with the sugars. Add to that a healthy dose of brown sugar, candi sugar, and even a pinch of super sweet confectioner’s sugar, and that on top of a bed of biscuit, Grape Nuts cereal, and toast, and the result is a tantalizing, highly aromatic beer that, while it does swing heavily toward sugars, smells like the most wonderful piece of hard candy in Willy Wonka’s factory, even the aromas somehow coming off as viscous and sticky (this helped by the fact that the bottle’s open mouth is coated with enough sugar to act like a Post-it note).

On the tongue, the beer is surprisingly smooth, the hops bringing in pink grapefruit, sugary rosewater, and rose hips primarily, with lighter touches of grapefruit rind, mint, and light pine resin, with the faintest note of dandelion stem for bite. These mix with hard candy-like levels of sugar and fruit, with orange, berry, cherry, apricot, and light fig and plum fruit esters, as well as some brown sugar. Subsequent sips are more bitter, the hops bringing in touches of anise and black pepper, as well as a stronger grapefruit rind and pine resin bite, but there’s still a good balance between hops and sugars, and the beer maintains an overall sweet profile, earthed somewhat by biscuit, cereal grain, and toast. The aftertaste is a continuation of the main mouthful, but with an increasing hop presence as the sugars die off, and lingers on the tongue for a long time. Mouthfeel is an oily medium, and carbonation is medium-light to medium, this latter feature lending the beer a somewhat watery sensation.

Overall, this is a very nice beer, and it’s good to see an Imperial IPA that focuses on the more palatable sweet side of hops, instead of trying to burn the tongue off with eucalyptus, anise, and pine resin. The result is closer to a DFH 120 than anything I’ve had recently, especially in the massive sugary rosewater and rose hips overtones that blend so nicely with the hard candy fruit esters. The beer may actually be a little too sweet, however, and feels like it needed a larger bitter kick, or perhaps a bready base for balance. Still, this is well worth trying, since I suspect many people will be surprised at how smooth and palatable 144 IBUs can be.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.25/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Strong aroma is quite hoppy, grassy and hay-ish rather than evergreen, with hints of malt and grapefruit. It pours a slightly hazy dark copper with a fairly thick light light yellowish tan head. Mouth-filling, lip-smacking flavor has a strong, somewhat bitter hoppy core and notes of grapefruit, malt and caramel. Smooth texture is rough around the edges, and firm tingle leaves a hoppy, bitter finish with a caramel hint.

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Photo of Fatehunter
4.2/5  rDev +16.7%

Pours two fingers of foamy head on a hazy straw colored body.
The aroma is bold pine and grapefruit with a little pineapple and mango in the background.
The taste is big and bold with pine, lemon and grapefruit bitterness exploding though balanced out with some dose of malt.
The texture is smooth.
Quite good.

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Photo of samtrillo
4.19/5  rDev +16.4%

I disagree with some reviews I've read of this beer. It's not a mess and not overly hopped for the sake of hoppiness. It's not that bitter despite what the IBUs say. The sweet malt and citrus and mango pulled from the hops really balances this beer in my opinion. It's quite delicious and underrated. It's definitely a huge IPA with a big mouthfeel and lots of hops, but it knows what it's doing with them. Good cold and at room temp. The alcohol wasn't noticeable to my mouth either, maybe my body. Granted I'm a hop head and drink my fair share of double and triples but one reviewer said this was too hoppy even for hop fanatics... nope... It's just right!

Don't be shy. Go and Try.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.19/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a reddish dark amber color with a 1/2 inch beige head that retains very well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a broken ring behind.

S- Pungent, grassy hop aroma that doesn't have as much booze fume as you'd expect. Kind of reminds me of a barleywine.

T- Has a honey-like sweetness at the start and then the bitterness comes on and, while it is aggressive, there's a smoothness that sticks from start to finish. ABV is very well-concealed and it definitely carries that barleywine quality. Hints of black pepper.

M- Sharp, oily and soft. Medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the fuller side.

O- I'd had a taste of this once before and didn't like it. But now that I've had a full pour of it, I'm able to derive more subtlety and balance in the overall flavor profile. Certainly more in line with the characteristics of a barleywine, but a super hoppy barleywine for sure. The alleged 144 IBU doesn't come through as intense as you would think either.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.16/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Hazy red-orange with a finger of frothy off-white head. Fades normal.

S - Lots of grapefruit, citrus, pine, grassy hops, sweet caramel malts, oak, chardonnay, and some booze.

T - Grapefruit, orange, citrus, pine, grassy hops, lots of resiny bitterness, sweet caramel malts, oak, chardonnay, with a bit of biscuit malts and some booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a dry, bitter, and warming finish.

D - Great hoppy DIPA. Good overall balance.

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Photo of rangerred
4.09/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter from a 22oz bomber.

Pours a clear dark reddish copper with a very thin, off white head.

Aroma is full of hops. Lots of citrus with grapefruit being predominant along with some lime. A little bit of oak on the nose too.

The flavor has plenty of citrus up front from the hops along with a very strong bitterness that lasts throughout. There is definitely sweetness from the malt which is to be expected. I can taste some wine characteristics in this including oak and some grape. It is subtle though and more noticeable as the beer warms.

Overall, I am really impressed with this beer. It definitely improves as it warms and the complexities from the barrel aging become more apparent. My one complaint is it is a little sweet and syrupy but it never does become cloying. Really an awesome job and the best beer I have had from Napa Smith. Might pick up another bomber or two.

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Photo of Beer_Loving_Brandon
4.08/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite IPAs. Normally a little more expensive than I like to spend for a 4pk, but worth the extra scratch.

I like IPAs so of course I tend to favor them in reviews. The only beers I feel are better than IPAs are Trappists.

Hopageddon pours without drama. Doesn't even really foam up when you open it either. Tastes hoppy (shocker) with a hint of floral/citrus notes. Has a bitter finish, but nothing too crazy. At 9.2% don't be surprised if you can taste a little alcohol. The smell is a bit peculiar. I cannot decide what it actually smells like, but it is not standard run-of-the-mill IPA smells.

If you don't like IPAs or are shy away from them, you will probably dislike this beer. If you do like IPAs, you will probably like it. If you like IPAs, but not the most extreme version, try Napa Smith's organic IPA. It smooths out a lot of the edge.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.08/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Typical amber colored DIPA body with a two finger thick head and mild residual carbonation. The smell was very mild for a DIPA, with the hops coming across as piney, floral, herbal, and earthy. The taste was quite bitter, with the same piney-earthy-herbal hop profile up front, and some spice in the finish. The malt was evident as a simple and light sugary taste. The overall flavor profile reminded me lot of a strong tea with some sweetness. The beer drank much more easy than the 9.2% ABV it contained, and there wasn't any warming or burn at all. This beer did not start very promising, but delivered the hops in the end.

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Photo of Billolick
4.03/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Yardhouse in Yonkers NY

Poise standard amber. Lite tan head, film and leaving impressive and coating sheets of lacing.

Herbal, floral hop nose

Densely hopped and boldly flavorful DIPA.144 IBUs doin their work. Thoroughly enjoyable west coast style all the way. If you are a fan of Ruination you will love this beer

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Photo of TrappistJohnMD
4.03/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours amber color in Teku glass. Lots of white head that lingers well with nice lacing along sides of glass.

Smell is heavy with honey and citrus hoppiness.

Taste follows the smell well. Lots of honey and pine. Tagerine bitterness is prominent. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is creamy and medium bodied. Good carbonation.

Overall this was very nice. Good example of the style.

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Photo of NSXAG
4/5  rDev +11.1%

Napa Smith Brewery - Hopageddon [Imperial IPA] (22oz ---> Stemless wine glass : 9.2% ABV : 144 IBU)

IPA's being one of the last styles I ventured into as I explored more and more beers, 144 is a HUGE number for my tastes, but I've heard good things from a few random Hop-Heads along the way, so here goes nothing... Pours a pretty hazy deep orange hue with a nice creamy, 2 inch, almost "simmering" head, with hardly any carbonation at all... None the less, the retention in the head is very nice, so though unassisted, a nice cap remains amidst some fine looking lacing... Next, betcha coulda guessed it - Bright hops and some orange on the nose, but not as overwhelming as I'd anticipated... It's balanced out by another bold note that's more grainy/malty, but I can't detect exactly what... Upon first taste, a warm mellower grapefruit taste immediately rolls over my tongue, accompanied by the inherent bitterness... Followed by some "Cutie" flavors (small oranges) as the bitterness mellows to a pleasant linger, but again some more flavors presented themselves that I couldn't distinctly identify, but the profile is indeed affected by them... Mouthfeel on this beer is excellent, though fuller than many other IPAs I've had, it made for a good base to build this brew upon... Medium on the sip and smooth on the finish, with that 9.2 nicely laced amongst it all... Upon first glance, this beer is mildly intimidating, especially for someone who's not exactly a "Hop-Head" - so to speak... But what I found was a nicely balanced, fruity, (obviously) bitter beer that had many nice elements to it... My favorite it was not, but overall I was pleased to have chosen this beer to accompany this evenings' dinner and hockey... Another good brew - Cheers!!

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Photo of nickfl
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - poured with one finger of white foam on a hazy, amber-brown body. The had settles quickly and leaves thick lace.

S - a fruity aroma of orange with sweaty pine in the background.

T - pungent, sweaty hop flavors up front. Some caramel and sweet, bready malt in the middle that fades to clove and must citrus in the finish.

M - medium body, moderately high carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - a fruity, but sweaty dipa, not a top ten beer, but well made and better than average.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.99/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

We pour a brew of the deepest sunset orange. It holds a two finger head of creamy but big and soapy khaki colored bubbles, showing excellent retention. Thick patterns of lacing are left around the glass. A thick haze permeates the clarity, with no sediment noted. Carbonation appears to be light. The aroma gives tinny metallics, rich caramel maltiness, flashes of white sugar, browned apple and peachy fruitiness, salt water taffy, spicy booze, mild diacetyls, and softer citric hops. The alcohol becomes much more fusel with warmth, as the hops deepen into more earthy and grassy varietals. Our first impression is that the flavoring is heavily malt-balanced, with some bitterness of hops, but not the expected onslaught of the 144 IBUs. As we sip, salty caramel and pale malts mix with floral and citric hops, cane sugar, green grassiness, juicy yeast, cola syrup sweetness, and orange fruitiness for the start. Moving to the peak is more bittered hop earthiness, coin, buttery toffee notes, and black pepper booziness to bite. Pulling to the finish is a bittered raw vegetable leaf quality, powdered yeast, bubblegum esters, basic pale and caramel maltiness, buttered sourdough bread, salt, tannic breakfast tea, and a hint of herbal mintiness. The aftertaste breathes of lemon peel, citric hoppiness, tannins, drying yeast, mineral, root, coin, booze, and cotton candy sweetness. The body is on the full side, while carbonation is medium. Each sip gives big froth, cream, and slurp, with lighter finishing pop or smack. The mouth is left fully coated, with quick tannic dryness all down the hard palate. The abv is appropriate, and the beer sips easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this beer was its depth through both the nose and flavoring. At no point did this beer really feel “cheap”, with hearty boldness and sweetness of the grainy backbone, and fighting bitterness of the hops. The flavor is nowhere near the bitterness expected from something with the IBUs advertised, but the blend is decent, leaving you curiously satisfied by the end of the glass.

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Photo of smcolw
3.98/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip glass with a one finger head. This stayed a long, long time providing a solid layer of lace. Orange amber color with a mild haze.

Great pine and floral aroma from the hop. There's ample malt (with a touch of alcohol) to provide balance.

This is a hop bomb. Absolutely no balance. So, unless you are a hop head, you'll want to avoid this beer. Fortunately, I love the bitterness--all of the complexity is within the hop. Plenty black pepper, one might even say there's a touch of hot pepper. Dry-ish finish with long lasting bitterness. Neutral body and carbonation.

If you love the hop, you'll love this beer.

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Photo of brureview
3.83/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Quite an interesting DIPA. I haven't tasted another imperial IPA like this beer.

Poured a very attractive tea color in a tulip with a 1 finger head.

The aroma was quite nice- heavy vanilla, but no fruit as usually expected
in a DIPA.

The mouth feel is not very carbonated. I did see carbonation bubbles in the head.

The taste was fruity, and a hint of chocolate. I couldn't identify the fruit.

The finish was excellent. At warmer temps, 52-55F, one experiences the full bitterness and hops of 144 IBUs. The serving temp on this DIPA is crucial to tasting it.

Overall, quite unusual. Not the typical, in your face Imperial IPA. Exceptionally hoppy and bitter, and not fruity. Worth checking out.

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Photo of travolta
3.82/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Tan, light, little frothy head, nice retention. Pale apricot in color, sticky lacing.

Nose: Sweet vanilla, raisin, candy and sugar, pineapple and tropical fruits.

Taste: Malty, syrupy, with carbonation that is very light. Plum with some dark fruits. Tiny bit of citrus notes.

Notes: If you are going to call it an imperial ipa, make it crazy. This is an excellent ipa, but perhaps not imperial.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.8/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #67 (August 2012):

LOOK: Bright brass, sticky suds

SMELL: Pungent hop, resin, citrus rind, pine, fresh grass, mango, mint, floral water, dank, caramel, faintly vinous

TASTE: Bitter, creamy smoothness, fresh grass, full hop jacket, very warming esters, Grape-Nuts, dry pull, stone fruit, lightly vinous, wood, fresh hops, slightly vegetal, tropical fruit, semi-dry hoppy finish

Napa Smith boasts 144 IBU’s—needless to say, our palates were tested. Yes, very bitter but also an insane amount of hop flavor. A very big beer to tackle, not for the timid. Obviously one of the hoppiest beers we’ve tasted this year. It does live up to the name, and although the alcohol was a limiting factor, you’ll want to sit back and enjoy the ride.

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Photo of corby112
3.79/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Draft at Hamilton's in San Diego.

Pours a dark golden amber/orange color with a one finger white head that quickly fades into a thin ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Vinous wine barrel aroma with earthy oak and vanilla as well as some earthy pine and sweet citrus.  Good balance of barrel and a complex hop profile.  Hints of orange peel, pineapple and grapefruit counter the grassy/earthy notes without being overpowered by the barrel treatment.

Medium bodied with some spicy hops balanced by a prominent barrel character.  Vinous with dark and light fruit notes as well as some toasted oak.  The dryness from the oak compliments the earthy hops which give off hints of pine a citrus. Decent balance but the hops are overpowered a bit and aren't as complex as the nose suggests.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.77/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz brown bomber purchased from Jane's Beer Store in Mountain View, CA. Highly recommended by Jamison who served me. I was going to take it back to Sydney to share with my people back there, but Jamison told me I had to drink it tonight. Who am I to argue with a man with a name like Jamison?

Pours a very hazy amber-orange colour, with a very thick and pleasing head of eggy white that leaves excellent lacing and persists as a fine pocked film. Body is extremely thick, and the carbonation is extremely languid, especially when tilted, staying almost static in the glass. Looks very good indeed.

Nose is also very good, especially on the initial opening and pour. Plenty of fresh, green herbal tones—more herbal than citric, certainly—turning slightly grassy and earthy as well. Malt character is rounded, providing a little sweetness, but it's in no way forceful: this beer is about the hops and it knows it. Powerful stuff.

Taste is somewhat more predictable. Rather flat malt character spiced with a slight pithy hop bitterness that flattens out as well in the morass of the malt. Slight oaky characters come through on the back, giving a suggestion of dankness. For a 144IBU beer, the bitterness sure is weak on the back—but I think the oak couches it slightly. It's pleasantly balanced at least—aggressive bitterness would probably make it worse, but it's certainly no match for the aroma.

Feel is good. Smooth and fairly thick with a good basis.

Overall, it's certainly a good beer. Is it on par with the best US IPAs? No, it's really not. I like it just fine, but it's probably the equivalent of half-a-dozen other similar beers I could have bought just about anywhere. Sorry, Jamison.

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Hopageddon Imperial IPA from Napa Smith Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 55 ratings.