1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Heady Topper - The Alchemist

Not Rated.
Heady TopperHeady Topper

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

8,025 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,025
Reviews: 1,606
rAvg: 4.73
pDev: 7.4%
Wants: 5,217
Gots: 1,625 | FT: 36
Brewed by:
The Alchemist visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
"An American Double IPA” 75 IBU 8.0% abv

(Beer added by: scottum on 03-27-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Heady Topper Alström Bros
Ratings: 8,025 | Reviews: 1,606 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 4ster
4ster

Ontario (Canada)

4.7/5  rDev -0.6%

Had on tap in VT and from cans. Review from both glass (tulip/large wine glass) and also from the can. Was canned around 2nd week, December 2012.
As always, after 800+ reviews, I think everyone knows what to expect from this beer but just for reference here's my review. Thanks to papat444 for the 4 pack :D

(from glass)
A: Pours light straw colour, but extremely opaque, possibly do to hop resins. (if you pour out the end of the can into another glass it is even more cloudy.. with resin?)...not chunky at all, just a fine mist. Light bubbles and light head as well that doesn't build up too much but leaves a slight lace around the rim of the beer as it goes down.

S: Floral, more in the range of sweeter hop smells, some citrus fruit... I don't get as much pine/resin type of hop smell as with some out DIPA's/IIPA's. Otherwise just a lot of endless hops. When you stick you nose in the tulip you get hit with a wonderful green bouquet and know what you're in for!

T: As others noted, aromas lead right into flavours...more floral hops at the start, citrus, and what you don't get so much of in the nose, bitterness and resin, which comes out as it rushes to the back of your throat & explodes back into your mouth...superbly balanced compared to some other super hopped beers. Bitter enough to be a IIPA but not over the top... it just keeps going and because it is so well balanced you just want to keep going...where as some super hopped beers keep piling on the bitterness to where you can't taste anything afterwards for days... this one is like a clean slate each sip....and just a note, if you are savouring it, it will get more resin/bitterness as it warms but still no hint of malts really.

T / M: (from can): Almost like a nitrous injection of hops. As you drink from the can you get both the beer and the hop aromas at once, which is nice. Out of the can it seems to carry a bit more resins and more intense hops... you might also not get as much bitterness because you get a bit more carbonation on your tongue than from drinking out of the glass, so it is more sparkling and refreshing which makes the flavours jump around a little more, but does emphasis the hops for sure... overall it was interesting drinking out of the can.... not sure I'd say it tastes all that much different to be honest, (and I didn't do back to back in 1 shot), but it certainly doesn't diminish the quality of this beer. I'd say glass is probably fine, but you're good either way. Drinking out of the can might be a little closer to what you get on tap (minus the Guinness toys..) but again, didn't do that comparison either.

M: Pine resin stickiness...you'll be tasting this all night on your palette... incredibly balanced... like a hop oil slick, smooth upon entry and as it goes down, no hint of the ABV at all. Perfect amount of carbonation to keep it fresh but not attacking your tongue to distract.

O: What can I say that hasn't already been said before. Best IIPA ever? I haven't tried all the other ones. Best one I've tried so far? definitely. Drink-ability for this amount of hops is outstanding. Hard to get to all the hop flavours in such a complicated hopped beer, but that is ok, this isn't about sipping an Imperial Stout till you get to the bottom of the complexity.... the Alchemist set out to make a perfectly hoppy, drinkable IPA and have surely succeeded where many others fail. For a IIPA this is near perfection. I don't go back to a lot of beers but I would drink this often if I lived in VT...

01-05-2013 02:13:36 | More by 4ster
Photo of Filabee
Filabee

Michigan

4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

04-10-2014 00:51:13 | More by Filabee
Photo of CesarLopes
CesarLopes

Brazil

5/5  rDev +5.7%

04-01-2013 23:19:47 | More by CesarLopes
Photo of Prospero
Prospero

Colorado

3.85/5  rDev -18.6%

Light in color sort of a amber straw, nice white head and good aroma, not as much aroma as I would have expected, but good citrus and flower comes through. Also drank out of the can as suggested. The taste is nice and smooth, great drinkability. Maybe not as well balanced as others, the bitterness seems to linger with this one and I think it tends to take over the thin malt base. Great beer overall, but needs a bit better balance.

06-01-2012 16:28:48 | More by Prospero
Photo of tsauce2
tsauce2

Indiana

4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

10-05-2013 01:15:26 | More by tsauce2
Photo of Adkins1203
Adkins1203

Ohio

5/5  rDev +5.7%

02-11-2014 21:26:57 | More by Adkins1203
Photo of Kevincredible
Kevincredible

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

05-04-2013 08:04:46 | More by Kevincredible
Photo of mwbrady12
mwbrady12

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -15.4%

08-03-2013 01:40:54 | More by mwbrady12
Photo of neckbeered
neckbeered

Montana

4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

04-05-2014 02:56:35 | More by neckbeered
Photo of Domvan
Domvan

Texas

5/5  rDev +5.7%

04-28-2014 16:02:07 | More by Domvan
Photo of funkyaudio
funkyaudio

Illinois

4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

04-16-2014 03:08:47 | More by funkyaudio
Photo of cvm4
cvm4

Mississippi

4.7/5  rDev -0.6%

A - Pours wonderfully in my goblet style glass. Nice, 2 finger white head. Amber golden in color & very cloudy.

S - Hops, juicy fruits like pineapple/orange/grapefruit and a lovely floral aroma.

T - The taste follows the smell. Loads of hops, fruit & an awesome bitter finish.

M - Crisp with a lighter body & high carbonation.

O - Definitely on par with Pliny. Never thought I'd say that.

08-31-2012 23:46:20 | More by cvm4
Photo of krl2112
krl2112

Illinois

5/5  rDev +5.7%

03-02-2013 20:35:24 | More by krl2112
Photo of deebo
deebo

Minnesota

4/5  rDev -15.4%

07-12-2014 03:56:07 | More by deebo
Photo of bootdown21
bootdown21

Connecticut

5/5  rDev +5.7%

04-24-2012 23:13:51 | More by bootdown21
Photo of alelover
alelover

Michigan

4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

03-09-2013 07:21:19 | More by alelover
Photo of anticipation23
anticipation23

Wisconsin

5/5  rDev +5.7%

07-20-2013 05:22:10 | More by anticipation23
Photo of Wetpaperbag
Wetpaperbag

Washington

3.73/5  rDev -21.1%

A- Orange in color, with a good clingy IPA head.

S- Smells spicy in hop aroma. Definitely an East Coast IPA in that the hops aren't bright and citrusy, but more earthy and vegetal.

T- Tastes of an EC IPA. It tasted solid, but I don't like the hop profile.

M- Solid mouthfeel, I like a good thick IPA.

0- Overall it wasn't a bad beer. Would I want to buy more, no not me personally.

01-12-2014 21:20:05 | More by Wetpaperbag
Photo of chcfan
chcfan

California

4/5  rDev -15.4%

11-14-2011 15:38:47 | More by chcfan
Photo of JAXSON
JAXSON

Pennsylvania

4.43/5  rDev -6.3%

Pours orange with a fluffy white head. Nose is bursting with oily hops, orange candy, pine resin. Sticky and delightful. Flavor is a collage of brightly bitter hops, grapefruit rind, orange rock sugar. Finish is long and grapefruity. Very nice stuff.

10-28-2011 00:51:34 | More by JAXSON
Photo of jjheinrichs
jjheinrichs

Wisconsin

5/5  rDev +5.7%

01-09-2013 04:29:25 | More by jjheinrichs
Photo of throwback
throwback

Ohio

5/5  rDev +5.7%

06-29-2012 16:04:12 | More by throwback
Photo of zaphodchak
zaphodchak

Virginia

3.8/5  rDev -19.7%

It's in a can. It appears as a silver can. I got the last bit of the can at a tasting, and at the can's insistence, consumed it out of the can.

Powerful fresh grassy hops are immediately apparent despite the can.

Bitter, powerfully grassy west-coast US hops. Slight undertone of honey, but not nearly enough to balance. One dimensional, perhaps, but good at that dimension.

Decent but a bit fizzy, almost prickly.

Well, it's an IPA, and it's a good one.

12-11-2011 03:43:12 | More by zaphodchak
Photo of Bdel34
Bdel34

Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

12-28-2013 21:47:58 | More by Bdel34
Photo of brentblack1
brentblack1

New York

5/5  rDev +5.7%

07-10-2013 05:55:45 | More by brentblack1
Heady Topper from The Alchemist
100 out of 100 based on 8,025 ratings.