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Hop*A*Potamus - Great River Brewery

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very good

89 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 89
Reviews: 26
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 14.58%
Wants: 4
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great River Brewery visit their website
Iowa, United States

Style | ABV
Rye Beer |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Hop*A*Potamus is a double dark rye pale ale made with a ton of pale and six kinds of rye malt for a "full" body. This double dark rye pale ale is fiercely hopped with a Northwest blend for a stampede of flavor and aroma.

(Beer added by: mynie on 12-25-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 89 | Reviews: 26 | Display Reviews Only:
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Photo of kojevergas
3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml aluminum can with interesting label art reminiscent of Diamond Knot brewing acquired in a trade with the very generous Duff27 and served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average; this is me first beer from this brewery (I think). 99 IBUs. "Double Dark Rye Pale Ale." 9% ABV confirmed.

Served straight from the fridge and side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

I'm really in the mood for a good pale ale (dark though it may be...). I loved the rye in say, Alpine Nelson so I'm excited for this.

A: Pours a luscious two finger mocha-khaki colour head of great cream, great thickness, and fantastic (8+ minute) retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a surprisingly dark, rich amber colour. Translucent. Semitransparent. Nice lacing as the head recedes. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. I'm not sure what I expected, but this is very interesting. Boy, that head is gorgeous. Soft and inviting. I can't wait to try it.

Sm: Caramel, evocative full rye grains, light rye bread, cream, amber malts, pale malts, light buried citrus, biscuit malt, and strangely executed nectary and light piney hops. It's a strangely built, yet seemingly balanced aroma. I'm not quite on board with it, but only because it's new to me. Quite grainy. An above average strength aroma. It's not unpleasant, just somewhat foreign - like somewhere between a lightly hopped amber and a black IPA. Curious. I'm intrigued. The rye notes here are surprisingly deep; I don't usually pick up on rye but I do get it here. This is one of the few beers brewed with rye that you could hand me blind and I'd bet that I actually would pick up on the rye. Though it's more hoppy than, say, a German style roggenbier. I think the combination of the hops and the grains is what has me puzzled; it's not quite seamless but it's definitely well balanced. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

T: Hm. I like it, but it's not easy to file into a clear category. There's definite hop flavour here, with some grassy hops, light floral hop character, and more dank light oily hops. I like the hop character overall; I'm glad I don't get the pine or nectar of the aroma. But it's still missing something. On the malty end, you've got lots of grainy character and light cereals. Rye is in there, along with touches of rye bread. Caramel is quite forward here. Light amber and biscuit malts fill out the body and give it a bit more complexity. I'm not getting any yeasty character or alcohol, which is a good thing. It's nicely creamy, too. It's got notable complexity, but I'm more impressed with the subtle interaction between the dank somewhat oily hops and the thick bready grains; they go really well together. Balance is good. The finish is heavy rye; the hops have faded by that point. It's an interesting beer. I'm not sure I've had one quite like it before. Some of the best use of rye I've experienced, to be sure. Really liking this one, but it's not bringing as much flavour or complexity to the table as it would need to to really be great. Not too bitter nor too sweet.

Mf: Chewy. Moderately thick. Good smoothness and wetness, but there's enough coarseness to let the flavours come through. Slightly overcarbonated, but there's no sharpness or bite to it. Good body and depth of flavour. Good presence on the palate. Nicely soft. I'd stop short of refreshing, but it's pleasant to drink. Love the creaminess especially. Complements the flavour profile quite well.

Dr: A welcome oddity from Great River - a brewery I intend to investigate more. ABV is quite well hidden here and it's very drinkable. I'll enjoy killing the whole point by myself. Don't expect a pale ale when you crack this one open; the rye really distances it from that designation. Still, it's not a roggenbier in the traditional sense. Not sure where to classify this one - and I think that's a good thing. Love the experimentation. I'd recommend this to friends, but I wouldn't know how to adequately explain what it is. Any fan of trying different beers would do well to give this one a spin. I owe Duff27 for the opportunity to try it.

High B-

kojevergas, Mar 20, 2013
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Hop*A*Potamus from Great River Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 89 ratings.