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Hoponius Union - Jack's Abby Brewing

Not Rated.
Hoponius UnionHoponius Union

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

323 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 323
Hads: 2,341
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 6.86%
Wants: 353
Gots: 401 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Jack's Abby Brewing visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mschofield on 08-07-2011

This lager harmoniously combines lager yeast fermentation and west coast IPA hops. Our India style Pale Lager is like a traditional IPA but with a twist - it’s fermented cold and aged for extended periods. A blend of classic American hops creates a huge tropical fruit and citrusy hop aroma. A dry finish accentuates the pleasant bitterness and hop profile. Hoponius Union uses locally grown dehulled spelt from MA.

65 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 323 | Hads: 2,341
Photo of PatriotsRule
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance is perfect if you love gold with heady lacing galore. The carbonation is just right, and as I have come to love from Jack's Abby, the unfiltered unpasteurized product is pure.
Smell is hoppy but not overly so. Well, it is a whole nose full of hops. A bit of citrus too
Taste is something that will blow your mind in this beverage. Higher than a five/five
Mouthfeel is so crisp and so smooth I can't imagine anything being more heavenly.
Overall these lagers Jack's Abby makes are some of the greatest beers today. Affordable and oh so delicious, the Hoponius Union is the kind of beer I wish I could drink more regularly. (632 characters)

Photo of AndyAvalanche
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had a bad headache the last 2 days and took the time to finally do this. Review based off several notes. Had this beer man times on tap, via growler, and in bottle. Doesn't matter how long it's in front of me, or in my fridge, it always goes real quick!

1 pint 9 oz. bottle poured into a large Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass. Comes out a dark golden color, sort of tottles between yellow and amber. Like many quality lagers, this is a very clear looking, well filtered beer. Slightly off white but not quite cream colored head. Huge bubbles and the head erupts and you have to take our time pouring this one if our not careful, but I like it that way. Head sticks around awhile and it has excellent lacing.

Smell is freaking awesome. Definitely centennial hopped in a big way. Very generous in the aroma hopping portion of the brewing process on this one, especially for a lager. Like a nice west coast style IPA in the smell, tropical fruits and plenty of citrus. I've heard some say it lacks a malt backbone, but I don't buy it. I understand the argument in the sense that the malts really do take a backseat to the hops which is pretty unique at this point. Slight hints of the lager yeast.

Taste is truly outstanding. Again generous amounts of centennial hops that produce plenty of citrus peel hops and some tropical fruits (pineapple, cantaloupe, maybe even some mango) . Sweetness to it, bready and nice. The malty sweetness again is present, but goes away quick after the hops make there way in. It's bitter, but a pleasant bitter that balances itself well with the sweetness.

Mouthfeel is perfect. Starts sweet then goes to a nice gentle bitterness, perfectly balanced. Great carbonation level and medium bodied. Again well balanced with a nice initial sweetness that slowly leads to a nice dry bitter finish. Perfectly balanced the whole way through. Unbelievably drinkable, hence why I had to base this review off so many notes.

This is a PERFECT and flawless representation of the style, I don't care if chugalug06 says otherwise!

Jack Hendler, you knocked this one out of the park sir! A constant space reserved in this in the fridge for this, either bottle or growler! (2,189 characters)

Photo of Lambocalrisien
4.91/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a crisp, dark but see-through golden color with a nice two finger white head and leaves good lacing.

S - Amazing and very unexpected. Nose fills instantly with pleasant floral and citrus hop aromas.

T - Holy HOPS, this thing is wicked hoppy, in the best of ways. Grapefruit and mango up front with a subtle pine on the back end. Finishes dry but with a crisp clean feel. Excellent balance of flavors and bitterness.

M - Smooth with a light-medium body and close to perfect carbonation. Goes down really easy.

O - The best IPL on the market. Great beer and a must try for all beer lovers. Excellent job Jack's Abby. (665 characters)

Photo of dtumminelliob
4.89/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer is like liquid gold, almost literally. It pours an iridescent golden hue, reflecting both its status as a lager and its "India"-ness. It is crisp upon tasting but the body of the flavor is bitter with a strong floral-citrus end note.
The mouth-feel is smooth and straightforward, the smell reflective of the description of the taste.
It really is a fantastic beer, and perfect for someone who wants an IPA and the crispness of a lager at the same time. If you want something deeper, go IPA, and something lighter a session IPA will do. But this is definitely a flavor profile all its own. (598 characters)

Photo of TWStandley
4.82/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from the bottle into my HF wine glass.

Appeared a beautiful golden-orange color with a two finger fluffy white head that dissipated.

Smell is awesome - juicy with citrus fruits and a bit of melon.

Taste is incredible. Juicy oranges and grapefruits.

Mouthfeel is beautifully crisp - just the right amount of hop bitterness on the finish. Carbonation is spot on.

Overall an amazing beer, one that I am happy to have regular access to. (444 characters)

Photo of hudsonvalleyslim
4.82/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Damn it. I thought perfect was a dream. This is one of America's finest beers. I've imbibed many a growler from the brewery in Framingham, and hope that folks elsewhere will discover this superfine ale. A hophead delight! If you're in the area, visit Jack's Abby. Knowledgeable folks and brilliant brewers. (306 characters)

Photo of stevensd19
4.8/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow. At the Horseshoe Pub in Hudson, MA. My favorite pub to enjoy a fine draft. I usually have an IPA or a Pale Ale but this brew knocked my socks off. A good buddy visiting from NJ agreed that this is one of the finest tasting brews that we have tasted. Very very nice brew! Well done Jack's Abby! Can't wait to stock my beer fridge with this most excellent local brew! Thank you!

Follow up, a very good friend brings me a 4 pack of this delicious brew as a birthday gift! I'm a fortunate man! Just as good as the draft!

You gotta try this. (543 characters)

Photo of taez555
4.8/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beers pours a crystal clear bright golden tan body with a very mildly off-white head.

Nose is extreme, in your face, resin and citric hops. I just picked up a growler from the brewery about 2 hours ago, and the smell from this fresh hops are sublime.

Taste is medium bodied with an immediate huge citric hop resin, grapefruit, orange, lemon, citric hop attack. Loads of rich malts, but very smooth (probably thanks to the lager yeast). That's really what does it I think, it's got all the flavors of a big IPA, but goes down smooth like crisp lager. A perfect combo. Bitterness isn't overpowering at all. It's bitter, but really well balanced and in check. The smooth caramel malt flavor has a chance to shine through despite the hops. You can clearly taste the two parts of this beer. Ends with a nice lingering hop resin bitterness and flavor.

I know this beer is a lager, but... come on.... this beer is a pure resin IPA (sans the ale yeast). Kudos to Jack's Abby for showing the world that not all Lager's need be boring macro land. This beer easily holds it's own the best California resin/citric IPA's. If JA takes off, this will be their flagship brew. (1,167 characters)

Photo of jneiswender
4.79/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Had this beer on tap at the brewery in Framingham. Served in a 4oz tasting glass, cool.

A-white head and a gold pale body.

S-nice and profound citrus and pine scent. Very clean.

T-wonderful flavor. pine resin and fruity citrus. Just enough malt. Lager yeast provides the clean medium for the hops.

M-medium to light

D-Just an awesome beer. So clean and yet so flavorful. I would not only drink this again but I would seek it out. (435 characters)

Photo of drea0695
4.77/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a freshly filled, co2 purged, capped on foam growler into a standard pint glass

This beer is delicious. The hop aroma is out of the park but it doesn't slap you around with bitterness. I really think it's very balanced. It's definitely highly drinkable and the ABV sneaks up on you for sure. It easily holds it's own against any IPA out there.

It just smells so good! In a way the hop profile reminds of Sierra Nevada celebration.

If you're around the Framingham area stop in and try this one (and their other offerings) plus the guys are super friendly. (571 characters)

Photo of Gatch
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wooow. This beer is fantastic. You must drink this.

A: Clear, golden-yellow with a white, fizzy, soapy head. Sticky lace and a bit of retention.

S: Massive tropical, fruity, piney, resiny hops. Up there with some of the best IPA's I've put my nose to.

T: Incredibly smooth, delicious, and refreshing hops that contain flavors such as mango, fresh pineapple, and other crisp, sweet fruit. Lightly roasted, sweet malt is there in the finish. Well balanced but the hops shine and put this over the top.

M: Can't beat the fresh hop flavors, the smooth feel, and the refreshing qualities. Drinkability is absurd.

O: Clearly one of the best of the style but just a great beer overall. Well done Jack's Abby. This is superb! (722 characters)

Photo of AllDayAdams
4.73/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer is very tasty! I love fact how they made this beer so earthy and a hint of citrus. The smell to me almost has a weed smell. awesome beer, and good buy. (161 characters)

Photo of tzieser
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

enjoyed on-tap at the pour farm tavern in new bedford.

a: clear golden color with a fluffy white head that sticks to the sides of the glass for a long time

s: strong hop aroma...notes of citrus and pine. the nose very similar to a west coast IPA

t: loads of hop flavor, with notes of citrus and tropical fruits with a light pine bitterness. finishes dry and clean. very drinkable. the lager yeast makes this more drinkable than any hop bomb i've ever had.

m: smooth mouthfeel.

so glad to see a lager with that citrusy west coast hop flavor. huge marks for creativity. well worth seeking out. (596 characters)

Photo of mclynch
4.68/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

One of my top ten beers ever. This is one outstanding lager.
The pour is a light amber color with a beautiful and lasting head.
As you approach the glass the aroma of citra and simcoe hops grabs you by the nosehairs and drags you in! I almost enjoy smelling this beer as much as drinking it!
But get to the drinking! Mmmm . crisp and clean as a lager should be, with those hoppy aromas now transformed into a nicely balanced bitterness and hops flavor. Delicious and smooth - I can drink a lot of this beauty.

Also... kudos to Jack's Abby for sending a lowly homebrewer like me the recipe for this deliciousness... which I brewed and served at my son's wedding - everyone was amazed. I was quick to give credit where credit is due - thanks JA! (745 characters)

Photo of Veejuh
4.65/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Really great beer

Pours beautiful gold with coppery hues and slightly cloudy appearance. Very nice look.

Smell is pretty potent and hits you with piney smells with a hint of sweet grass. Very inviting.

Upon first sip smell and taste merge with the creamy slick and oily mouthfeel to produce a wonderful sensation.

Taste is too complex to put into words yet makes perfect sense. Hop level is perfect for the malts and the effects of the yeast and lagerization blend it so nicely. Hops -> malts -> crisp sweetness where the whole thing just sails along like the santa maria through buttery golden clouds of mashed potatoes.

I mean wow, this is the ipl that all others wish they were. Absolutely fantastic and a must try. (728 characters)

Photo of datalager
4.64/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Wow, I'm really digging the beer! Drinking it right now. I'd say it reminds me of a top level IPA with a smoother finish. There is a ton of circus and pine hop aroma, plenty of bite, and a lingering aftertaste. But the mouthfeel and swallow is decidedly more oily than dry. There are also notes of nuttiness and herb (oregano...rosemary???) in the whiff as it warms. This is a super dynamic beer. There is one other really hoppy lager that I have had (Stoudt's Smooth Hoperator, also quite good), and I think the "lager" quality of this style has it's place in a world of IPAs.

At any rate, call this beer world class, because that is what it is. (648 characters)

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.64/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

16.9oz/500ml/.5l bottle served in a glass beer mug.

L - lightly hazed orange/copper color with a white head that thinned to a layer leaving some decent lacing behind.

S - citrus and tropical fruits with a malty backbone.

T - citrus hops upfront with a dry and bitter finish.

F - medium bodied, crisp and refreshing, easy to drink.

O - it's a great example of a IPL, a style I wish more breweries would tinker with. (419 characters)

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Thanks to Ljudsignal for this neat extra!

Poured .5L bottle into pilsener glass; looks like an IPA. Golden-amber in color with lively carbonation and a lovely thick fluffy white head that fades slowly leaving lots of lacing. Definitely smells like an IPA; floral and fruity hops with some citrus rind, and only a slight hint of lager yeast smell underneath. Taste is citrusy hops that quickly come to a bitter pinch, overtop of a crisp lager mouthfeel and some slight malt hiding beneath the bitterness in the aftertaste.
Overall, a very cool beer. The second "IPL" I've had, and this one is the better of the two. Lots of great hop flavor, with a good dose of bitterness; couple that with the lager maltiness, and this reminds me of a super-hoppy version of an English IPA. Delicious! (787 characters)

Photo of JMScowcroft
4.62/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Jack's Abby Brewing - Hoponius Union

Look - Pours a hazy pale golden amber with a pinky sized (subjective enough?) foamy head that vanishes as quickly as it came. Chunks of lacing. Great representation of this hybrid style.

Smell - Citrus and slight resin hops in front, bready yeasty sour lager aroma in back, subtle but crisp, makes me ready to take a sip for sure.

Taste - Citrus (grapefruit sour) hops are a blast from the start followed by a wave of traditional (bready) lager and then a second wave of more resiny bitter hops takes up the rear.

Mouthfeel - Surprisingly bitter for 65 IBU, but in a good way. Slightly sticky (buttery) malts and maybe a little boozy and warming, but yummy as hell! Carbonation is just right, medium bodied.

Overall - This is a solid brew, I am really digging this IPL style. Jack's Abby as a whole seems solid so far, will have to continue sampling their offerings. (908 characters)

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.62/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A-Pours a sunset orange color. Illuminating and pretty. Body is very clear. Bubbles rise in pillars. Head is very attractive. Head retains very well and is bright white. Sudsy head leaves lacing squiggles along the glass.

S-Whoa! This beer absolutely wreaks. Incredible amounts of grapefruit and orange. Tropical fruits and resiny pine notes. All this hoppiness mixes very well with the noticeable Lager yeast. Kinda blown away by the nose.

T-This hybrid matches up with some of the better IPAs I have had. This is extravagantly hopped and delicious. Grapefruit and citrus for days. Apricot and mango and even a bit of pineapple. The malt is sturdy enough but is still submerged under the waves of citrus and pine. This is very, very tasty.

M-Great feel here. Crisp but has some really nice resinous qualities. Light enough to imbibe very steadily. Has the feel of a beautifully crafted IPA but still displays the bright bubbles of a Lager.

O/D-Absolutely love this beer. It is so unique but does not sacrifice incredible flavor in order to stand out as a uniquely crafted brew. Shockingly hoppy. Also, a half-liter bottle comes in at $2.50. What an absolute steal. Jack's Abby is amazing. This beer really made me happy. (1,225 characters)

Photo of VictorWisc
4.61/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Started out with a well chilled bottle that warmed as I went along. Poured into a tall sample glass (multiple pourings).

Pours light to medium amber, clear, with substantial cream-colored uneven head. Recedes fairly quickly, but with good lacing, almost no collar. No visible carbonation.

When the bottle was opened, the room filled with tropical hops aroma. When poured, the aroma changed toward the piny, bitter end. Some spice on the nose, but mostly camelia, mango and ... malt. Definitely did not expect malt on the nose, but it was clearly there. Caramel malt notes, almost approaching fresh butter and vanilla. Overall, an interesting balance of aromas, approaching those of a complex DIPA.

Taste followed the aroma. Not sure if hops faded, but I've had a bottle before and it seemed more bitter. Oddly enough, no such issues with tropical notes--sweet citrus, mango, hints of green tea. Can't really place the spice flavor, but a hint of nutmeg with roasted malt notes as it opens. Caramel malt notes in the finish along with returning sweet citrus that lingers before leaving a clear pine residue.

Body clearly reflects malt that I noticed when first opened the bottle. Although dry and fairly crisp, it feels a bit heavy on the tongue, coating it and allowing the flavors to linger in the mouth. So I'll go with medium body. Moderate but robust carbonation. Alcohol is not particularly noticeable--certainly less so than with Victory Prima Pils and Headwaters PA, which are both lower ABV, but Victory's house style is a bit boozier than most. Still, noticeable buzz after finishing a full 1/2 liter of HU (at 6.7%).

A surprising IPL that drinks like IPA but at lower temperature. Very well balanced beer that should grace every hophead's list. I'm lucky enough to have local distribution, but I have little doubt this brand will go national before the next presidential elections. The entire lineup is quite good, with HU and Framnghammer clearly the most popular entries. (1,989 characters)

Photo of standardcherry
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Very clear orange/golden color with a nice big white head.
S: Smells super hoppy. Floral, tangerine, tropical fruits, slight grassiness; lots of peach and mango. Light toasted sweetness from the malts.
T: This beer is very juicy and tropical. Floral, orange, mango, tangerine, peaches. A bit of honey and a slight sweetness from the malts to balance it out. Finishes bitter and a bit piney. The difference between this and an IPA is that the finish here is drier and more crisp, which leaves you wanting more! The bitter aftertaste does not linger as long either.
M: Light bodied with medium carbonation. Mouthfeel is crazy good, so smooth, crisp and refreshing. I could drink this all day.
O: Another home-run from Jack's Abby. I would take this beer over most IPAs out there. (784 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler shared by Thorpe.

Pours a clear golden amber with a thin white head, quickly fading to a thin collar and no lace. Clean, dry aroma with a subtle hop bite, mildly fruity, with light yeast. Medium thick body with soft carbonation and a bready, biscuit finish. Slight fruity sweetness from a strong hop bitterness. Not quite a real dortmunder, but an expectional lager/IPA hybrid. Really enjoyed this. (407 characters)

Photo of Jmc181
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have several IPAs that I love but this beer is a real treat. It's got a great flavor profile and I find it slightly creamier than the IPAs I typically enjoy. Every time I have one I'm pleasantly surprised, and I'm now buying it by the case at my local Costco. This is a truly delicious beer that I often recommend. (319 characters)

Photo of Joel
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

When was the last time you had an IPL (India Pale Lager)? O<. when was the last time you had an IPL from a cask?

Jack's Abbey showed great confidence in this Lager by serving it from the cask. I had this last Saturday night at Bukowski's Tavern in Boston. So what is wrong with this Lager? Very little. At first sight I was a bit surprised at the over one finder of head. Also it didn't look like a full pint. I was also surprised at the warm serving temp. I would guess that would have been in the 55-60F range. How many beers are there that would taste good at this temp?

I could picture the different hops dancing around in my mouth in harmony. These hops went together quite well. Citrusy as noted and not bitter. The smoothness of the lager made me want to drink this fast, but the flavor made me want to savor it.

I make my own homebrew and this is a well balanced beer. (884 characters)

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Hoponius Union from Jack's Abby Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 323 ratings.