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Hop Bomber Pale Ale - Rivertown Brewing Co.

Hop Bomber Pale AleHop Bomber Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

220 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 220
Reviews: 82
rAvg: 3.42
pDev: 17.25%


Brewed by:
Rivertown Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: pwoods on 02-25-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 220 | Reviews: 82 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of screamking
screamking

Ohio

3.7/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass.

Pours a slight dark amber color with a 1 finger khaki head. The head seems to dissipate very quickly. Aroma is a mixed bag notes. There's a little bit of citrus working around but pine comes in the strongest. Lots of bread in the first taste. Some bitter grapefruit peel. Not a whole lot of sweet here, just bitterness. The aftertaste comes thru surprisingly clean and light. Fairly light bodied, easy to drink, small ABV. I've had this beer several times and I think it's growing in me. This pale ale isn't world class, but a solid beer, worth a try and and occasional drinking session.

Update:10/24/13- got this fresh from a 16oz can, much much better fresh.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2013 02:44:00 | More by screamking
Photo of damndirtyape
damndirtyape

Ohio

3.35/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle (no date) served in a Libby globe stout/porter glass.

Appearance: Slightly hazy orange-amber. Looks almost identical to a glass of iced tea held up to the light in regards to color. Very little head upon pouring, thin white skin that died back to just a ring of foam at the edge. With some swirling the foam came back a bit, but then died again. Some small islands of lacing, but not persistent.

Smell: With a swirl, orange citrus. After the foam died back the orange citrus is still there, along with some leafy herbal smells. A few floral notes come out as the beer warms up.

Taste: There is an attempt at some hop flavor and malt at the beginning, and then wham, a massive bitterness settles over everything. A bombing of the palate with bitterness if you will. Not sure I want my palate carpet bombed though. Even Ruination by Stone, which was another beer that really hit my taste buds hard, had more nuances of flavor in every sip. This is unbalanced. The bitterness is a combination of pine, tea-like bitterness, and some strong grapefruit citrus. There is an attempt of the malt to come out as the beer warms up and I can taste some buttery notes under it all, but the bitterness again clouds everything. Certainly more flavorful than some beers I've had, but way out of balance unfortunately.

Mouthfeel: Sticky on the teeth - lots of hop oils attacking the enamel with this one. Thickness above water, but nothing special.

Overall / Drinkability: Neat label and name, and perhaps some truth in advertising with the name but unfortunately unbalanced. I like my hops, but the malt backing is mostly absent in this beer, and so one and done.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2013 23:03:54 | More by damndirtyape
Photo of maxwelldeux
maxwelldeux

Washington

3/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle. Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a moderate off-white head on it and a little bit of floaties in there. Nose has a little bit of hoppy bitterness to it, but not a lot of substance. Taste is balanced in that it’s not bitter nor sweet, but there isn’t a lot of flavor to it.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2013 03:27:45 | More by maxwelldeux
Photo of bjmh
bjmh

Ohio

4.28/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Maybe my palate lacks the sophistication of some of the other reviewers, but I really like this beer! It is plenty hoppy with an ibu of about 50, and the complex malt comes through to give it a great balance. The rye really comes thru for me, and I find it a very enjoyable, drinkable beer. It may not be typical of the style, but taste is what I base my judgement on. I have tried four other beers from this brewer, but the Hop Bomber is my favorite. The brewery is about 5 miles from my home.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2013 23:46:00 | More by bjmh
Photo of beergoot
beergoot

Colorado

3.66/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured a nice honey-amber colored body with a thin white head. Strong caramel malt aroma infused with a bit of fruity esters. Gentle caramel malt flavor with a very subtle apple-like fruitiness; a decent sharp bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium-light; smooth; crisp and semi-dry.

A good enough APA offering that doesn't break away with any distinctive qualities, but it's definitely drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2013 01:09:28 | More by beergoot
Photo of Groomsy
Groomsy

Kentucky

3.63/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

The body is darker than I expected for an APA. A dark bronze/orange color, a head of tight-knit white bubbles forms in the glass and come to a height of about two finger before dissipating to a cap of foam. Strings and webs of lacing spiral down the glass. A nice looking brew.

Unorthodox for an APA - that's what springs to mind as I smell this beer. I've had several bottles of this and all have had the same symptom: A case of remarkably un-hoppy smells for a traditionally hoppy beer. While not a bad thing, I generally expect a nose full of citrus and pine with this style. The citrus smell from the hops (think orange peel, maybe some grapefruit) take a backseat to fruity/ester-like smells (yeast?) balanced by toasty caramel and fresh grain.

However, the nose slightly betrays the flavor profile. While a very malt-forward example of the style, the hops still play a role. On the front of the palate, flavors of caramel and bread dominate, followed by a flash of fruity sweetness. The hops really come in on the finish: A wave of grassy, citrus, and pine flavors mingle on the back of the tongue and leave a long lingering finish. The balance is admirable, but I feel that the name of the beer is a misnomer.

The body of the beer, medium in weight (fairly light for the style, I'd say) goes down dry and accents the bitterness in the finish, which, unfortunately, is a little too astringent for my liking and hangs around too long. Usually with this style, the bitterness comes at the beginning, so having the reverse of that is quite a surprise. Carbonation prickles the tongue without being overwhelming.

While somewhat misleading in title, this beer is still solid. It's a sessionable ale, but don't expect a "traditional" APA here - I would say this is closer to an English-style pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2012 00:51:02 | More by Groomsy
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

3.05/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer looks nice, but it smells like hairspray. The taste of it is, okay. It's just an odd mesh of thick malts that don't really show this as a pale ale. Where are the hops? Where's the attitude? Not here. A pretty forgettable beer, and more waste of my time and money. (This whole driving south thing hasn't panned out on the beer front so well on much of these brews.)

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2012 05:13:05 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of 5thOhio
5thOhio

South Carolina

3.5/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is reddish amber with a quarter inch white head that dissipated to a thin film of foam on the surface and rim. Smattering of lacing.

Aroma is malty up front and follows with slight floral/pine hop notes.

Taste is initially heavy on malt with subtle hints of, maybe, molasses & licorice but finishes with pine and spicy bitterness lingering. Mouthfeel is solid, not too thick or thin and strong on carbonation.

More malty than I would expect for an APA, but it works since the mouthfeel and appearance are also on the heavy side. A decent APA overall, but somewhat huskier than usual for this style.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2012 00:17:57 | More by 5thOhio
Photo of RickS95
RickS95

Indiana

3.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A bit dark for a pale ale, kind of a bronze color. The head is more cascading than forming; a soft pale yellow, it's got an IPA-like look in that it's thick and craterous, leaving a nice lace behind.

The smell is very yeasty and malty up front. Smells like some sort of fruity bread. On the back end, some floral hoppiness shines.

Very malty and earthy. Some flowery tastes, tree bark even. There's some sort of berry flavor, but I can't put my finger on it.

A bit thick and medium bodied. Has some IPA qualities, like a piney, hoppy resin, oil feel. Very bitter and slightly dry finish.

Overall, it's a pretty good beer. A bit more like an IPA than an APA, but shares characteristics of both.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2012 03:16:45 | More by RickS95
Photo of rinhaak
rinhaak

Massachusetts

3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

With a name like "Hop Bomber," I think expected something that was, well, a hop bomb.

Quite the contrary, Hop Bomber Pale Ale is a pretty mild and very malty English-Style Pale Ale (I don't care if the Beer Advocate style listing says otherwise). Despite being hopped and dry-hopped with American hops (though exactly what hops, I'm not terribly sure), they definitely take a back seat to the full maltiness that make up the centerpiece of this beer: caramel, toffee, and even a raspberry-fruitiness are the primary flavors.

Hop Bomber is very drinkable and pleasant though grossly misnamed. A worthy beverage for a session ale that isn't necessarily worth going out of the way to seek out.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2012 00:13:13 | More by rinhaak
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

3.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's the starting point for homebrewers and professional brewers alike. It's the epitome of balance, done the American way. It demonstrates the soul of malt and the personality of hops with ways that on the American pale ale can- and Rivertown nails the style effortlessly and modestly.

The classy ale starts with a pour of solid copper hues that protrudes through a slight hop haze. A creamy and evenly dispersed head tops the beer with firm formation, retention, and lace of off-white foam.

Balanced aromas of caramel and citrus swirl about the olfactories, never allowing one to command the other. Background notes of toasted grains bring out the scent of baking bread, ginger snaps, light earthen spice, pine, grass, and light wood. It's a clean and coherent scent that invites the first sip immediately.

Delicious flavors of caramel come first, but without the sweetness associated the the taste. Instead, a dry-malt flavor of bread crust, caramelized malt, rye, and light grain strike first- just before the growing intensity of hops. Where the early palate appreciates malt, the middle palate morphs toward a waivering sweetness in order to favor the citrus and grass flavors of hops: white grapefruit, orange zest, fresh cut grass, and light pine blend with the caramel malts and make me think "ginger snaps" if only for a fleeting moment. Because its then that a finish of malt dryness, sprucy bitterness, and barley husk finishes the taste.

Medium bodied, but the body develops nicely into a dry finish of alcohol warmth, moderate hop resin, and slight astringency from both leafy hop matter and grain tannin.

It's a refreshing beer that does all that the style wants. It straddles well known examples of Flying Dog's Doggie Style Pale Ale on the low end and Sierra Nevada's Pale Ale at the high end. With this gauge, I'd happily enjoy this beer any day.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2012 06:14:46 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of LXIXME
LXIXME

New Mexico

4.13/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a big light tan head above a clear copper colored pale ale.

A light caramel malt aroma balances well with a light citrus to slightly bitter hops and even lighter yeast notes.

Lightly roasted caramel malts blend very well with a variety of hops notes including light citrus and light bittering.

A dry aftertaste that harbors some of the caramel notes from the taste on this medium bodied beer.

A light tasting pale ale with some strong tastes, I was very pleased with this beer, very good without being overbearing.
Although I like overbearing hopsy beers I really see a need for beers that have a distinct hops taste but on the lighter side. This is a great beer to help bridge the gaps from one style to another without losing taste.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2012 23:42:35 | More by LXIXME
Photo of Josiah2729
Josiah2729

Tennessee

3.8/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Light amber color, two finger head, excellent lacing all the way down, decent head retention. this is a clear beer with nice effervesence.

Smell: Sweet malt, nice bitter hopiness.

Taste: Malty sweetness followed by strong bitter hop presence. Hops stay with you.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, light carbonation.

Overall: This is a nice hoppy beer. Nice to try some new brews in this area.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2012 21:06:09 | More by Josiah2729
Photo of davecavemaster
davecavemaster

Ohio

3.95/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This frosty barley pop is from one of the most historic beer brewing cities...Cincinnati, Ohio. Back in the late 1800s, Cincinnati was home to over 30 different breweries. Building on that proud tradition is the Rivertown Brewing Company. My first selection from this brewery is the Hop Bomber. The bottle says that it is named for the B-24 Liberator. The Hop bomber is a very malty brew, courtesy of "Dark English crystal malt and spicy fresh rye malt" I've had malted beers that are too sweet and overpowering, but this flavor is right on the money. But let's not forget, this is "Hop" Bomber after all, so let's get to the hops. Rivertown dry hops (that means they add the hops to the wort after the boil) the brew to get a great aroma and taste. I don't know the varieties, but they use two different kinds of American hops for the process. Some of the "hoppy" beers can have a bitter aftertaste, you'll find none of that here. Beautiful dark color, nice foam head, great smell..this is one good beer. Nice to see Cincinnati putting out some great homemade craft beers again.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2012 02:30:52 | More by davecavemaster
Photo of ajanesz
ajanesz

Kentucky

2.88/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served from a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance - Dark golden bronze in color with two fingers of creamy yellow white head that sticks around. Rather murky but nicely carbonated. Nice lacing.

Smell- A slight hint of mouth watering floral citrus scent derived from the hops. Not much else here.

Taste- The first thing that hits me is the rye followed by a medium biting hop flavor. I expected more hop bite, but this pale ale has a rather malty flavor start to finish. Unexpected but intriguing spicy rye flavor.

Mouthfeel- Light to medium body with some creaminess, but still crisp.

Overall- I like the rye kick at the beginning, but it is tough for me to compare this to other top pale ales. The finish lacks character and a notable hop character that I was expecting. Nonetheless, a very drinkable ale, but not one that I would look for one the shelf.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2012 01:29:43 | More by ajanesz
Photo of DrinkinBoy
DrinkinBoy

Georgia

3.03/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours a deep amber to light copper. Thick head with good retention appears an off-white color. Did have some sediment in it.

S - Aroma consists of hoppy resin with some slight fruit candy and caramel tones.

T - Light sweetness and tiny bit of roast on the front with a lack of a mid palate presence. Finish with expected hop bitterness for style, but without any nuances.

M - Slightly lighter than expected, with appropriate carbonation.

O - Overall this beer is a pretty average APA. There is some slight complexities which makes it just interesting enough to keep you attention. But in a market full of Pales, this one doesn't really stand out in a good or bad way. Worth a try, if you like to try things from all around.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2012 05:15:25 | More by DrinkinBoy
Photo of zeledonia
zeledonia

Minnesota

2.95/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Another BIF bottle, and another brewery that's totally new to me.

Pours a medium coppery amber, quite clear, and on the dark side for a "pale ale". One finger of light yellowish tan light, decent retention, and some nice gobs of lacing left on the glass.

Smells nice and balanced. Sweet malts come through most clearly, with some dark fruit and nut. The hops aren't super aromatic, adding mainly a crispness and light airy feel to the aroma. Interesting.

Taste is a little flat. Half-way through, when I want it to pick up and bring me something new, it just fades off. There isn't much to hang onto here - I find it bland, with a very light touch of hops in the back end. The bitterness actually builds after most of the other flavors are gone, but that doesn't salvage it for me. Just not very flavorful, in any way.

Mouthfeel is fine. Medium-bodied, enough carbonation. No complaints here.

I find this beer... uninteresting. There's just not much that I can point to that I like about it. Maybe I'm getting too accustomed to aggressively dry-hopped pale ales, but this beer, while fine and drinkable, doesn't present much.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2012 03:21:33 | More by zeledonia
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.1/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer ours a dark amber color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a complex malt scent that boasts of pale and crystal malts along with some Victory and biscuit malts for added character. The hop aroma is mild, yet well balances the beer well. The taste is good as well. It has a smooth bread-like malt character that melds well with excellent hop flavor. It's mildly bitter, but enough for hop lovers to enjoy. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking APA with lots of complexity and tremendous drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2012 21:11:50 | More by WesWes
Photo of dorianmarley
dorianmarley

Ohio

4.08/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is golden brown with a huge head and nice lacing.

Nose is musty, creamy, with Lemonhead candy.

Taste is nutty, malty, with almond and a slightly sour finish.

Mouthfeel is smooth, creamy, full-bodied, with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall, it is very drinkable with solid flavor.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2012 14:11:00 | More by dorianmarley
Photo of yourefragile
yourefragile

District of Columbia

1.75/5  rDev -48.8%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Stubby 12 oz bottle. Fun extra from a brewery I've never heard of.

Pours a perfectly clear cola amber with a bubbly, clear light tan head that fades to a ring of bubbles with no lace. Sweet bready and caramel malt aroma; no hop presence. Watery medium body with extremely low carbonation and a cloying finish. Slightly medicinal flavor, overly sweet and bready, slightly more of a hop presence in an earthy finish, but bitterness is still trace. I'll have to sample some other beers from this brewery, but will pass on "Hop" Bomber in the future.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2012 23:34:08 | More by yourefragile
Photo of spitInTheOcean
spitInTheOcean

Michigan

3.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

amber color. clear. tan head. fair retention. fair lacing.

citrus. floral. thin malt/ caramel aroma. thin yeast aroma.

hoppy. hoppy. good. citrus and floral flavors. pretty thin body. not much malt flavor. not much sweetness. bitter in finish, though not overpoweringly. good balance. just hop forward on all fronts. no alcohol flavor/ heat.

thin body. not too crisp finish.

this beer does not have a complex character. it is good, but not remarkable. i like how thin it is. i think it is appropriate for how (little) complexity the flavor has.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2012 19:55:13 | More by spitInTheOcean
Photo of jmarsh123
jmarsh123

Indiana

2.88/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear deep amber with barely any head or lacing.

Sweet malts and just a hint of citrus/earthy hops.

A bit of a citrus hit at first, followed by sweet bready/caramel malt finishing with a buttered popcorn flavor and slightly bitter. Kind of odd.

Thin and watery. Not the highlight of the beer.

Not terribly great. Outside of the butter flavor it isn't too bad, but very mediocre aroma and mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2012 23:56:41 | More by jmarsh123
Photo of wingman14
wingman14

Ohio

3.58/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours copper orange with a frothy off white head. The smell is sweet and hoppy, not a huge smell here, but still nice. Taste starts with some hop and malt with the hop increasing through the sip with the sweetness finishing. A hint of hop bitterness hits in the aftertaste with a nice swell of hops. The taste is nice but not huge or in your face. Nice medium mouthfeel, a beer with good depth, heavier than expected, but still good. Overall a good beer, has nice flavor, nothing about it is extraordinary or different, but a satisfying pale ale nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2012 23:29:27 | More by wingman14
Photo of WoodBrew
WoodBrew

Illinois

2.93/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I was able to try RiverTown's Hop Bomber during a recent visit to Cleveland. The beer poured a clear, copper/gold in color, with a nice head of frothy, off-white foam which laced. The scent included grain, toasted malt. The taste was mostly toasted malt with earthy hop note and hop-leaf flavor add balance. The mouthfeel was light to medium body with decent carbonation. Overall it was ok but I was expecting more.

Serving type: bottle

01-22-2012 16:22:27 | More by WoodBrew
Photo of jurban
jurban

Ohio

3/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Hops hit quickly but then there is a smooth and watery, but nice finish. Alcohol taste is minimal. Has a bit of an unpleasant after taste. Overall the taste is remenscent of a watered down ipa. Makes a good session beer due to its lower alchohol content and non-overwhelming flavor.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2012 02:27:29 | More by jurban
Hop Bomber Pale Ale from Rivertown Brewing Co.
78 out of 100 based on 220 ratings.