Hoponius Union - Jack's Abby Brewing

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Hoponius UnionHoponius Union

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding

316 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 316
Hads: 2,322
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 6.86%
Wants: 350
Gots: 387 | 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: 316 | Hads: 2,322
Photo of angrybabboon
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed 3/28/13

Appearance: Clear, golden orange with some copper - more of a golden copper from a distance - pours with a nice, big off-white head - the nice fluff fades to a nice cap, leaves a ton of lacing

Smell: Nicely hoppy, and decidedly not an IPA - floral citrus - oranges and grapefruits, with some juiciness - some spiciness/grassiness that seems more typical for a lager - pale and caramel malts in the background, some more hints this is a lager - something that smells like sweet onion when it warms up

Taste: Yes, this is a hoppy lager - floral, lightly juicy orange, tangerine, and grapefruit - spicy and grassy, with a lager yeast finish - malts are pale and caramel - could almost pass for an IPA, with the exception of the yeast spiciness and the malt profile - very unique and flavorful, medium level of bitterness - earthy, grassy finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nicely carbonated, smooth, but the finish is a bit earthy and oily

Overall: About as great as a hoppy lager can get (?)

If I had to pick on this beer for one thing, I would comment on how it's rather odd how hard it tries not to be a lager. But it is. And it's tasty. The oily, earthy aftertaste kind of tires my tastebuds, but the bottle size is quite ideal. Definitely worth a try. (1,272 characters)

Photo of gcamparone
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 16 oz bottle into a snifter. Lucky enough to scoop up the last 4 pack at Yankee Spirits in Attleboro, MA.

A- Pours a slightly hazy, golden body with a thick fluffy white head that reduces slowly to some bubbles sitting on the top of the beer. Leaves uniform lacing.

S- Citrus, grapefruit, tangerines, honey, caramel malt, slight breadyness. Subtle but delicious aromas.

T- Starts off juicy, citrusy and tropical, progressing into a sweeter lager with caramel and honey notes, ends every so slightly bitter and piney. Unlike an IPA of the same flavor profile, these notes are more subdued, not as sticky, and leave less of hoppy aftertaste.

M- Super light, smooth, and refreshing. Definitely has the drinkability of a lager.

An excellent representation of an uncommon style. All hopheads should seek this one out. Comparable to an IPA but less aromatic and a little more modestly flavored, yet extremely delicious. (936 characters)

Photo of AdamF625
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- golden and transparent with a fluffy white head

S- citrus and pine

T- suttle grapefruit and pine hop flavors with a nice bitterness

M- thin body that's carbonated well.

O- crisp and dry, a well hopped lager. This is my staple local everyday drinker for sure. (269 characters)

Photo of kevanb
3.86/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

500ml bottle poured into a stemless wine glass. Bottled 2/25/2013 and enjoyed on 3/13/2013.

The beer pours a soft copper color, slight chill haze, with a finger high soapy white head that has nice retention and leaves a great network of sticky lacing. The aroma is very fruit forward, notes of mango, grapefruit and tangerine with some wildflower tucked in there that finishes with a big dose of sweet, pale cereal grain. The the flavors much less impactful, mango and grapefruit lead the way before some light sweet floral notes bring out a lot malty sweetness brings out a bit of an unpleasant clash between the hops and malt. The body is a bit thin yet very lively, watery at times on the tongue with a redeeming creamy finish.

Verdict: A nice hoppy lager from Jack's Abby, but not the hop monster I expected it to be. I definitely enjoyed the bottle and if it was a local beer to me, I could see this being in my fridge regularly as an every day drinker. (960 characters)

Photo of Treebs
3.68/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle served in a Southern Tier tulip. Thanks to eorwar for the share.

A: Pours a clear golden yellow color with a fluffy white head forming on the pour. It recedes slowly to thin ring. Some splotchy lace is left down the glass.

S: Lager yeast profile with a light hoppiness to it. Subtle pale malts in the periphery.

T: Has a nice hoppy greenness to it with a mild citrus backing. Lager yeast profile with some sweet pale malts, but a nice hoppy bitterness cuts in at the end.

M: Very light bodied with a medium high carbonation level. Super easy drinking. Lightly bitter finish.

O: This was solid, but it was definitely hyped up in my head as being the best lager in the world. While it was very easy drinking and I would have again, I wouldn't put it in the upper echelon. (788 characters)

Photo of MCain04
4.51/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle from BostonRyan, thanks bro. No bottling date, this IPL was poured into my Bell's Tulip glass. Very first IPL, looking forward to this!

A: A tad darker than straw yellow, opaque, big 2+ finger eggshell-white head with moderate retention and good lacing.

S: Delightfully floral hops with a strong lemon and citrus nose. Some orange and grapefruit. Best-smelling lager I've had yet.

T: Follows the nose well. The hop presence is comprable to, if not better than, some of the better IPAs out there. Not exceptionally bitter (65 IBUs) but definitely bitter enough.

M: Clean and crisp, the epitome of the lager mouthfeel. Almost perfect. Not as dry as you might expect on the finish, but decently dry.

O: Really enjoyed this. Wish I could stock my fridge with this beer this summer. I hope to get to drink it again... either that or that my favorite local breweries (looking at you, Pipeworks) would start perfecting their own IPLs. Great beer! (959 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 BEERMILER12
4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bottled 02.12.2013

A: Pours a golden orange color with a little more than a fingers worth of head that has great retention

S: Extremely hoppy, with huge notes of citrus and light pine. Very fruity as well. Malts barely come through

T: Again, very hoppy. More of a fruitiness come through than just general citrus hops, with light pine and peppery spice notes as well. The malt does a nice job backing up the hops, much more so than in the nose. Finishes crisp and lightly bitter

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: An impressively hoppy lager with huge aromas of citrus and a crisp, balanced taste. Great price point to boot. More than worthy of a purchase (671 characters)

Photo of kawilliams81
4.04/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16.9 oz bottle into a Half Acre tulip.

A- pours a bright honey color with a 2" white head. Big clumps and blotches of lacing remain on the glass.

S- straw, lemon, grapefruit, light honey and some grassy notes.

T- light malts, tart lemon, grapefruit, bitter pine.

M- light body and medium carbonation. Very dry and acidic.

O- good beer, but very bitter which makes it more dry than I would like. Leans more towards bitter pine, grassy notes than the citrus. (475 characters)

Photo of NiceTaps
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into a tall lager-style glass.

A- Pours a bright and clean golden color, 2-finger white head that settles nicely leaving lots of lacing.

S- Hops all over; citrus grapefruit and orange, some pine. And some lager graniness.

T Light grass and very mild malt flavors are quickly trumped by a big dose of the citrus hop flavors.

M- Very light. Crisp. Light lager feel, mostly. Lingering hop bite and dry finish.

O- It looks and smells good, tastes OK, but has no body. It needs an element to tie it together. It is a light tasting lager one second, then a hop bomb the next. Not bad, though. (611 characters)

Photo of SawDog505
4.02/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 13 oz tulip glass, bottled on 2/12/13 FRESH! Pours a light orange, with a fluffy white head, that leaves plenty of lacing. Smell is earthy hops, citrus, cut grass, lemon, and hints of biscuit. The taste is similar, starts subtle with a grapefruit and lemon bittering finish. Body is almost medium, plenty of life, a little dry, and easy drinking. This is a nice beer and different than most. (405 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 MDDMD
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A-deep golden color with a big white head and good lacing

S-grapefruit, pine, light sweet malt, floral notes

T-grapefruit, tropical fruit, pine, malt, floral, nice bitter dry finish

F-light to medium body with moderate, carbonation, crisp and dry

O-a great lager beer with nice IPA characteristics and good balance, great drinking beer (339 characters)

Photo of tectactoe
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to portia99 for this one (it was an extra!), really looking forward to it. Pours a light copper color with very high clarity - only a very, very mild haze that forms dead center. Foamy white head begins to form some chunking lacing and legging right off the bat.

The nose is heavily hoppy with a solid malt backbone - if the first whiff is any indication, this beer will be balanced very well. Some lemon zest, pineapple, and bitter citrus peel couple nicely with light and leafy pines and wet hops. A touch of cracker-like sweetness from the malt brings the aroma together nicely.

The first thing that hits the palate when taking a sip is a helping of wet, juicy, pine-like hops; grassy, floral, and slightly pungent. Light resin starts to come out as the sweet malts work their way into the mix, helping to balance and offset. Some mild fruitiness extracts itself from the hop bill; pineapple, grapefruit peels, herbal lemon zest.

The hoppy flavors mostly fade by the time the beers has left your mouth and all that's left is the aftertaste, but a light, assertive bitterness remains along with some sweet bread, butter, and cracker malt flavors that give the excellent balance I was expecting from the aroma. As the brew goes on and gets warmer, I'm tasting some light white pepper spices come out from the hops, and maybe even some faint onion flavors. The body is medium and slick with a surprisingly dry and crisp finish.

Wow! Very solid brew here. It doesn't really exhibit the normal characteristics you'd expect from a lager, mainly because the identifiable yeast flavors are mostly covered up by the hops. You could easily mistake this beer as an IPA. The only real tell-tale sign is the dry, crispiness in the end. Nevertheless, this one shows exceptional balance and great execution for a very drinkable, hoppy-ass brew. (1,845 characters)

Photo of DocJitsu
4.56/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear, light golden color with an impressive white head. Speaking of impressive, the nose on this lager is a big surprise. Grapefruit and pine a plenty. A nice medium-bodied mouthfeel that has adequate carbonation and dryness at the finish paves the way for grapefruit, pine, and floral flavors make this extremely drinkable lager very tasty. (350 characters)

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.31/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Purchased at Julio's for like $3.00. Poured from 500ml bottle into crooked stave tulip. My first Jacks Abby brew.
Pours a see through golden burnt rusty color with a finger of foamy head.
Aroma is simply amazing...I was not expecting this! Crazy cotton candy and pine hop aromas with a crisp lager clean finish. Taste is very similar...sweet candy and pine hop, some pineapple. There is a certain crispness and hearty mouthfeel - must be the lager; but works so well with the crazy hop presence. Its not bitter at all but has fantastic flavor. Great great brew! (561 characters)

Photo of ChrisL24481
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my first time trying any brew from Jack's Abby Brewery and, boy, I am glad it was a fresh Hoponius Union (bottled on January 7, 2013). Poured into a Boulder Beer Company Mojo IPA pint glass.

Appearance - It pours a nice golden-orange color with about a 2-3 finger off-white head. The head appears soft and dense with decent retention. It slowly dissipates until a thin layer remains. A bit of lacing sticks throughout the glass. A bit of carbonation throughout as well.

Smell - The hop characteristics stand out with the first sniff which is then followed by citrus and tropical flavors specifically orange, lemon and a bit of grapefruit.

Taste - A delicious beer to say the least! Great hop flavors with a hint of the citrus/tropical fruits that you pick up with the smell. There is somewhat of a dry/bitter finish, but still a great tasting beer.

Moutfeel - A light-to-medium bodied beer with a bit of carbonation. This definitely has the feel of a pale lager, but the taste of the IPA throughout. This is an easy to drink beer that would be perfect for a hot/summer day. I can't wait to have this one again.

Overall - This was one refreshing and delicious IPL. I love the fact that it has the smells/tastes of an IPA with light body of lager. This is a very drinkable beer with little bitterness on the back end from the hops. A great beer that I recommend to all and I can't wait to enjoy the remaining bottles from the 4-pack. (1,445 characters)

Photo of AlexFields
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very clear and light, nice head but the body just looks like a lager, nothing extraordinary.

Smells very floral and citrusy, definitely reminiscent of a west coast IPA.

Tastes a lot like Pliny! Grapefruit type citrus, strong hops but not overwhelmingly bitter, some floral notes, very slight sweetness but definitely hop forward. Like a somewhat less interesting and complex Pliny but still very good.

Very drinkable, nice crisp mouthfeel.

8.0/10 (456 characters)

Photo of Malty_Matty
4.16/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- this looks your archetypical beer. Between gold and amber in color with a 2 finger white head on top, this is what everyone imagines when they hear the word beer.

S- a slight but not overwhelming nose of citrus and pine up front. Not much else. (i do have a bit of a head cold though)

T- the citrus isn't as strong here as in the nose. I pick up spicier earthier hops in the front and finish. Citrus is more toward the middle of the sip. The malt body keeps it balanced though it feels like more could have been done with it.

Mf- I could comfortably drink this all day. Light body and clean finish make for an incredibly drinkable beer.

I could drink this beer any time and be absolutely happy. A well done lager, which should be a model to others in the style. (768 characters)

Photo of sleuthdog
4.26/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle poured into GI tulip stem

Pour: Honey orange color and cloudy look. The head was a solid 2 fingers of fluffy, soft looking white with both some small and medium bubbles within. The lacing left behind is something to behold as it clings to the glass from the top to the surface of the beer. A sparse soft pillow is left on the surface.

Smell: If I didn't read the label of this beer as being a Pale Lager I would have said this is a great smelling IPA or pale ale with big hops. A big hop forward smelling beer with pine, grapefruit and some grassy notes. Upon subsequent sniffs I get some more of the citrus with orange and pineapple.

Taste: A fairly bitter forward beer with an astringent quality but in a good way. There is an initial hit of bready notes but that is quite fleeting as the hoppy bitterness takes hold right away. Grapefruit rind with big pine taste and bitterness throughout. The finish is very bitter and dry and the burps are even bitter.

Mouthfeel: Light body and very drinkable even with the high level of bitterness. A bit thin but that is only because I am comparing this to an IPA and I have to continue to remind myself that this is not and IPA. Crisp and refreshing and would make one hell of a hot summer beer.

Overall: Really enjoyed this beer and would love to be able to get some of this to enjoy on a hot, humid summer day here in Chicago. (1,390 characters)

Photo of quirkzoo
3.96/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Celticfutblclub, thanks again.

Pours a very clear light orange with 1 finger of fine white head that sticks around in a thin layer.

Really nice hoppy aroma, tons of fruit, citrus and tropical fruits. Not much else to the aroma other than hops but the hops are really nice.

The taste is more of the same. A lot of nice light hops with a strong amount of bitterness, very clean aftertaste indicative of the lagering. Really smooth, though I think I would have liked to have just a bit more going on other than the hops. Couldn't really detect much malt or yeast.

The mouthfeel is light, bordering on too light. I can't decide if I like the lightness which lends drinkability or if I want it to be more substantial. Definitely lighter than your typical IPA.

Overall this is a nice beer. I had it with my dinner and it has enough flavor to stand on its own against a nice thai curry, but it is also light enough that I don't feel full after drinking it. Glad I got the chance to try it, I will definitely seek out more Jack's Abby next time I visit relatives in the NE. (1,089 characters)

Photo of LeRose
4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into lager glass.

Deep golden orange with a humongous frothy head that subsided to a tight layer with tons of lacing start to finish. Aroma was malty, earthy, some yeast, citrus fruit, a slight but of pine resin. The citrus aroma reminds me of lemon lime hard candies. Get the malts immediately on he sip, then a huge blast of citrus more grapefruit than the nose suggested. Earthy underneath, nice hit of bitterness, not overwhelming. Tiny bit of breadiness or yeast, slightly toasty. Flavor hits and passes quickly, and grapefruit and maybe mango linger just a bit. Very clean and refreshing, light on the palate. Finishes dry and makes you want more. The carbonation is light and refreshing. Very drinkable and can see this on a hot summer day. Subtle, complex enough to be interesting, well balanced. Another winner from Jacks Abby. (844 characters)

Photo of flexabull
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of cbeer88, thanks again!

Pours a bright and slightly hazy gold color with a huge white head.

Aromas are very nice. Notes of hard candies, sugary citrus, floral hop cones and crackers.

Taste is light and hoppy. Crackers, bread dough, and light creamy sweetness up front. Finish is snappy and crisp with bitter grapefruit, and mineral bitterness.

Mouthfeel is smooth with plenty of body and nice carbonation.

Overall, a very tasty lager. Very refreshing and super drinkable, would be a treat on a warm day. (526 characters)

Photo of thagr81us
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to MSquared2 for sharing this one during one of our random Sunday tastings! Served from bottle into Sweetwater 15th Anniversary snifter. Poured a pale golden yellow with a half finger white head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, earth, earth hop, marijuana, fruit hop, and pine resin. The flavor was of sweet malt, earth, marijuana, pine, pine resin, earth hop, and spicy hop. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a good brew. There were quite a few different components going on in both the nose and flavor of this one that really kept me on my toes. With having a few brews from this brewery that night I can honestly say that they have aromas pinned down. With just a little more robustness this could definitely be a standout for the style. I suggest you get your hands on some of these or other brews from them if you get the chance. You won’t regret it. (1,023 characters)

Photo of BlackBelt5112203
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I originally had a 4 oz sample at the brewery, but I liked it so much that I got a growler.

64 oz growler poured into a pint glass at cellar temperature.

L – Pale amber color with a 2-finger frothy cream-colored head. Great retention and nice lacing. Clear with good carbonation.

S – Bready and caramel malt with a wonderful bouquet of hops with grapefruit, mango, pineapple, peach, and some pine notes.

T – Starts off sweet with bready and grainy pilsner malts, some caramel, and some tropical fruits with mostly pineapple flavors. Hop bitterness builds at the finish with mostly grapefruit notes.

F – Light-to-medium-bodied with good carbonation, a clean and mouth-coating feel, and bitter and slightly dry finish. Bitter citrus hop flavors linger.

O – This is a really nice lager. It’s crazy how these guys get so much flavor in these beers. You’d never think that they’re lagers. I’m not trying to badmouth lagers; it’s just that ales tend to have more complex flavor arrangements than lagers. Not so with Jack’s Abby. A major plus with these beers is that they still have the nice clean, refreshing feel of a lager with the vast range of flavors of an ale. Really tasty and drinkable beer. (1,222 characters)

Hoponius Union from Jack's Abby Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 316 ratings.