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Hoptober Golden Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Hoptober Golden AleHoptober Golden Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

496 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 496
Hads: 949
Avg: 3.83
pDev: 17.75%
Wants: 48
Gots: 65 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Riccymon on 08-20-2009

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 Hoptober Golden Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 496 | Hads: 949
Photo of claspada
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased and enjoyed during homecoming weekend in Virginia.

Pours a clear, dark yellow, almost light orage color with a tall, frothy, white head. Modest display of soapy lacing on the way down.

Aromas begin with a slight bit of pale malts that let in aromatic hop scents of fine florals, juicy tropical citrus fruits and meager spice with just a little bit of earthy hops hiding in there as well.

The tastes begin with the same pale maltiness but a little heavier than I expected from the nose. The I get some light spicy, earthy rye and a relatively mild overall sweetness. Predominately citrus hops with a bit of additional floral and earthy hop spice to help balance and add to the overall flavor profile. Finishes dry, lightly bitter, lightly crisp and with a lingering taste of citrus.

The mouthfeel is medium-light bodied with medium-plus carbonation. The finish is dry and crisp thanks to the higher carbonation and above average hop character.

Overall this was a very unique beer if you ask me. The golden maltiness was on the heavier side but the hops were also equally present and added a great balance of flavor. Would definitely be best enjoyed during the early fall months, as opposed to the colder/later ones, especially while it is still fresh.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a semi-cloudy gold w/ decent head and no lace on top of a nice mix of earthy hops and dry malt. Medium-bodied and chewey, it's real smooth w/ a wheat twang as well as having a piney, resinouse hop feel. Balanced brew as a touch of of chewey, doughy malt give off some fullness and dryness as a little bit of sugary sweetness. Throw in the touch of citrus and tart fruits and while a tad simplistic this is a very tastey beer that I enjoyed sipping on.

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Photo of glid02
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Taco Mac Metropolis in Atlanta.

Pours a clear golden color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells great - tropical and citrus hop aromas with very light amounts of pale malt.

Tastes good, although it's not as good as it tastes. Light citrus hop flavors up front segue into a lightly bitter ending. Pale malt flavors lurk in the background. Neither the malt or hop flavors are as intense as the smell lets on.

Mouthfeel is good. It has a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this beer smells great but the taste doesn't follow through as much as I'd hoped. Still, it's worth a shot.

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Photo of avalon07
3.62/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a golden color and a completely clear consistency. There was a small amount of foamy head that quickly dissipated and some OK lacing.

S: A nice aroma of floral hops, some malt and citrus.

T: Tasted of malt, floral hops and a hint of lemon. Not bad, though a bit on the sweet side.

M: A decent amount of carbonation with a sligtly slick finish. Light-bodied.

D: A drinkable beer, though it doesn't exactly stand out. Blonde Ales are rarely standouts.

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Photo of dirtylou
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz single, presumably from woodmans

served in a ND pint while watching a (presumably) ND loss to Stanford

appearance: bright golden body, foamy white crest and bubbly carbonation. decent retention

smell: fresh hop profile - tangerine and orange zest, crisp pale malts

taste: this one was a nice surprise - very hop-forward blonde ale. Tangerine, sweet orange zest, lemon juice, dry bready malts. Lots of sweetness from the citrus - interesting choice for a fall seasonal

mouthfeel: light, crisp, easy drinking

drinkability: good

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Photo of barnzy78
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12oz. Poured a golden yellow with a fluffy white head that held good retention and left sticky lacing all the way down the glass. Aromas were pleasant floral hops coupled with freshly squeezed citrus - mainly lemon with a hint of orange. Tastes were complex and very well balanced, consisting of biscuity malt - slightly bready, fresh crisp hop providing some lemon and grapefruit zest and some herbal qualities. Slight caramel mixed in with a peppery finish from the rye. Bitterness is present, but plays so well with the other flavors. Mouth-feel is light-to-medium bodied with moderate carbonation, and ever so mildly oily allowing the hop resins to cover the palate. Nice golden ale background with an awesome hop bite. The hop and malt medley is greatly balanced providing remarkable drinkability - this was much better than I anticipated. I also like the way the hop flavor is so pronounced without the huge bitterness - nice change of pace. This is the reason I love American craft brewers - they can take a classic style and completely change the way it is brewed, add different ingredients and come up with something that actually is reminiscent of an Oktoberfest Märzen with a definite American flare. Great idea and a fantastic outcome!

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Photo of ccrida
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On draught at Monty's, Hoptober is gold with a white head that leaves nice lace.

Smell is nice, very interesting, floral notes, some sweetness, wildflower honey, clean cereals.

Taste is similar, a nice bit of hop snap, more of the nobles then the west coast style hops that are often more assertive. Similar to the nose with the potpourri and honey, cereal, very clean and enjoyable.

Mouthfeel is a bit slick, with some dryness, and a medium light body.

Drinkability is good, a tasty beer that is subtly complex, sessionable but satisfying.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Nonic. 40 IBUs, Serve at 45 degrees F, 6% ABV, Best before 12FEB10.

A - Totally clear golden yellow with a rocky white head. A solid two-finger construction with good retention and superb lacing on the glass. Totally blanketing any area of the glass possible.

S - Plenty of American hops burst fourth in the nose. A lot of grapefruit citrus punch with a bit of resiny, sappy, pine needle. The hops are balanced well by a sweet malt backbone, but still take the lead.

T - It's a nicely balanced beer that, while maintaining the American hop presence up front, allows for a good malty structure underneath. The hops are still citrusy grapefruit with the pine resin but not as potent as the aroma would lead you to believe. The malty backbone has a complexity to it with a sweet touch and holds it all together.

M - Well-carbonated but smooth, this medium-bodied golden ale goes down nicely . It's a bit slick and oily on the tongue too.

D - A good early fall beer, it's crisp and refreshing qualities blended with it's medium-body and bouquet of hops makes it a drinking winner! A fantastic beer to cool off with after a brisk afternoon of raking leaves.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.14/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice clear amber golden with a decent white head. Aroma is richly hoppy and just slightly fruity. Flavor is seriously hoppy but not too bitter and has both malty and fruity hints. Texture is fizzy and leaves a nice hoppy finish that is only slightly bitter.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle with a freshness code of 19MAR10. Pours a brilliantly clear, medium yellow color with a creamy topping of white head. Retention is excellent as is the lacing. This is a great looking beer.

Smell is hopalicious, as tropical, grassy and piney hop aromas are dominant. I guess that is to be expected with five varietals of cones. There is a bit of underlying snappy wheat and grainy barley in there, but they definitely take a backseat to the fresh aromatic hops.

I get the spiciness of the rye, crisp wheat and creamy oats, but it almost seems like it is too much for a blonde ale to handle, especially with the multitude of hops assaulting the palate at the same time. Bitterness is high and hop flavor is very grassy and hay-like. After the delicious aroma, I feel like the taste has let me down a bit. Just too much going on in this beer for me to find it overly enjoyable, although I applaud NB for trying something like this.

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Photo of champ103
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear golden/yellow color. A small white head forms and leaves some light lace.
S: Citrus, grassy, and floral hops. Some grapefruit bitterness. Not much sweetness for balance.
T: Follows the nose. Citrus, grassy, and floral hops again. Some bread and grain. Not much else, but still enjoyable.
M/D: A medium body with crisp carbonation. A little watery. Not hard to drink. Something I can session.

Not bad at all. I can see the appeal for this beer. It just does not do a lot for me. This really is worth a try though.

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Photo of ZAP
4.44/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Golden colored...minimal head

S-Big juicy citrus aroma...oranges, tangerines, grapefruits, etc..the longer I smell this the more the other layers become evident...it also has a sweeter, sugar note as well as a spicy rye dimension .

T-Juicy citrus flavor as well....the rye malt is clearly evident and I love the citrus hop/rye malt mix...

M-Light side of medium bodied...smooth but not creamy..they used oats and it must have added a little to the body but it is not super creamy..finishes with a little citrus tanginess.

D-Nice creative golden ale that is a joy to drink. Only 40 IBU but it smells and tastes very hop forward.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.82/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a golden amber color with a one finger head of white foam. The head fades relatively quickly to leave a lighter level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the brew is rather strong of a bready and cerealy like smell mixed with some lighter sweet aromas of orange and peach. Along with these smells comes some decently strong hoppy aromas of grassy and earthy nature with a little bit of citrus and spice aromas.

Taste – The taste begins with a cracker like flavor mixed with a little bit of a caramel sweetness. As the taste advances the sweetness fades away with some grassy and hay flavors taking its place in the middle of the tongue. This dries out the flavor, and brings some nice hop dimensions to the brew. Toward the end of the taste, an earthy taste as well as a bit of a lemon citrus join the tongue, bringing more bitterness to the brew and making for a decently crispy malted, moderately hopped, and drier taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly thinner side with a carbonation level that is on the average to slightly higher side. For the drier malt and hopped flavors of the brew the feel is very nice and makes for a great refreshing drinking- moderately hopped ale.

Overall- This was a rather nice drinker. Dry and crisp with a decent showing of hop. A brew I rather enjoyed overall.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, first time I've seen this stuff. Golden-amber color with a good head and decent lacing on the pint glass. Smells just slightly grassy, cool. The flavor is more grassy, green hops but almost none of the citrus promised on the label. This is quite easy to drink however and I put away the whole six-pack with absolutely no shame.

update 09/2011 super peachy flavor

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Photo of warnerry
3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by 1/12/12

A - Pours a clear light golden brown with almost two fingers of white head. Head has good retention and leaves some lacing.

S - Floral and grassy hops, a bit of citrus and a faint spiciness.

T -- Pretty strong hop presence up front, again grassy and floral. After the initial hop punch comes some rye spiciness and and a bit of bready malt.

M - Medium crisp mouthfeel with a semi-dry finish.

O - A pretty good blond ale, but not something I would come back to.

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Photo of gtermi
3.52/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The appearance of this beer is very nice. The golden color this beer has is really nice and looks very enjoyable.The head is nice too because it is small, but covers the whole beer.

The smell has a lot of hoppy smells and has similar characteristics of an IPA.

The taste is amazing. It is super smooth and has tons of hoppy and malty tastes.

This is one of the best beers I have ever had from New Belgium and if you find are contemplating trying this, dont hesistate and do it.

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Photo of illidurit
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into pint glass. Pours dark gold with a tinge of amber and a frothy off-white head. Aroma is citrus and hop resin with some sweetish malt. Flavor is just really solid. Complex hop profile includes citrus, apple, and just enough resinous character to temper the sweetness. Solid pale/caramel malt influence as well. Really excellent balance, super easy to drink. I'm pretty impressed with this one.

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Photo of jera1350
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Crystal clear pale gold color with a crystally head of clean white foam on top. Very nice lacing.

Lots of fruit and citrus to fill the nose. Some honey sweetness and grassy notes as well. Smells like an IPA.

Buttery, with honey sweetness up front. Floral hops then open up to offer some light citrus notes. More floral than citrus though. Getting a touch of noticeable alcohol at the back end. This is a really clean and refreshing taste going on.

Lighter bodied with lots of pillowy carbonation to fill the mouth. Finishes lightly sticky.

I am not a big NB fan, but this one is quite impressive. It is flavorful and refreshing, but not in your face at all. It's the perfect marriage of flavor and drinkability. Not at all what I expected from this style. Give this one a shot!

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #33 (Oct 2009):

An ample amount of hops is a good thing any time of the year. 40 IBUs come from five different hops; Centennial, Cascade, Sterling, Willamette and Glacier are the paint for this canvas. Sweet aroma of wildflowers and citric zest with a trim graininess. Earthy citric bit- terness and flavor from the hops; nice little sting in the middle. Creamy, smooth medium body. Quick kiss of honey from the sweetness of the malt. A little bit of warmth from the alcohol. Long-lasting trail of hops and malt show that aftertaste is a good thing.

Brings memories of the Pale Ales we have tasted in West Flanders; hoppy, earthy, sweet golden beauties. By far one of the more interesting fall seasonals to be had.

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Photo of morimech
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is like no blonde ale I have ever had before. Pours a clear yellow, slightly darker than macro color, with a large white head that had excellant retention. Heavy spotty lacing is left on the glass. A lot of hops in the aroma with the customary New Belgium malt bill lingering in the background. Light, crisp flavor from the "C" hops give some citrus notes, also some spice and grassy notes as well. Slight sweetness at first but finishes bitter and clean. New Belgium packed a lot of hop flavor in this beer. Light body with lively carbonation without being harsh. One nitpick I have with this beer is the unnecessarly high ABV. Is it because it is a Fall seasonal? If it could be at 4.5% ABV or lower I could drink these all day. This has been my favorite New Belgium beer to date, and it is a Blonde Ale!

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Photo of cokes
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear bright brass under a tight-cropped carpet of white cream, pockmarked with large bubbles.
The crisp, crackery pale maltiness is scented below a varied layer of hops. Equal parts flowery, citric, and evergreen. The seem well meshed and cohere into a vibrant and unified hop aroma.
Down the hatch, the dry maltiness arrives first. Toasted egg bagels and oyster crackers. Slowly, the other grains reveal themselves. Wheat first, with a suave sub-sweetness. Rye with a tickly spicy note. Then finally (and maybe most evidently) the oats with their whipped sense of cream. Hops hit immediately, again, multidimensional, with intermeshed citrus, flowers, and pine, and a concluding and lingering, peppery, grassy bit.
The oats are the ringer for me, and they add they inimitatable glossy beefy slickness in the feel. Yet this still drinks with abandon with its sparkling carbonation. This shows a fantastic amount of complexity on its smallish frame, as each of its components takes its turn in the spotlight. It's sometimes difficult to slow the gulps down in order to savor and parse it.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.01/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into Delirium Tremens glass.

A: Pour a golden-peach color with a couple fingers of light bubbly white head that faded into an oily film that left rocky lacing down the glass.
S: Exotic fruit hops fill the nose with a touch of grass and tangerine citrus.
T: Light clean flavors. More malt comes through than the nose with a pale malt flavor mixed with the sweet fruit hops. There is a light peppery-earthy-spiciness throughout. Finish is a touch bitter but the aftertaste has weird sourness that I don't really agree with.
M: Carbonation is a bit sharp over the medium body. Mouthfeel is tingly but fairly clean.
D: Another mediocre brew from a mediocre brewery. Fairly average except maybe appearance. Would be good with food or at a barbeque.

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Photo of FosterJM
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

948th Review on BA
Draft to pint

@Lucilles, Chino Hills, CA

App- A very golden color with some streaking yellow and only a 1/2 finger of head that fell to a great wall of sheen and cling.

Smell- A good crisp aromatic little beer with a bunch of little notes to comprise a very subtle one. A little citrus and a little wheat and a little bit of floral.

Taste- A crisp little beer with a little bit of each aromatic note flowing into the taste. A little bit of wheat, malt and citrus with out a very minute touch of bitter from some hop oils. One of the better blondes I have had.

Mouth- Light bodied and a medium/high carbonation level. A good bit of bubbles with a touch of hop oil and floral malt residual flavors.

Drink- A light and refreshing little beer with some solid flavors and creates a good pairing with a tri-tip & pasilla pepper sandwhich, really cut the heat and refreshed at the same time. Alone, I probably wouldn't have this beer but with that meal yes.

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Photo of Holland
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a light golden color with a one inch head that leaves a good sized lacing and edges full of bubbles.

S: light hops, pale malt, and some oktoberfest-like spices.

T: taste is fairly complex, with many different spices and hops hitting the mouth at different times, and the pale malt is pretty noticeable and delicious.

M: good carbonation, yet smooth and coating with a medium body. Thicker than it looks for sure.

O: good beer overall, I would have this again. Nice that it's easy to get a delicious seasonal brew.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Transparent golden color with a finger of head.
Citrus smell, with a backdrop of malt. Grapefruit and sour (good) dominate the citrus.
Strong bitter taste throughout, a little sweetness rounds it out. Straightforward profile and enjoyable.
High carbonation, light body and crisp.
As a golden ale it bring more flavor than normal, which is good. Not my favorite style but definitely worth trying.

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Hoptober Golden Ale from New Belgium Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 496 ratings.