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Heady Topper - The Alchemist

Not Rated.
Heady TopperHeady Topper

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,072 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,072
Hads: 11,563
Avg: 4.66
pDev: 16.74%
Wants: 8,437
Gots: 3,998 | FT: 56
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:
Beer added by: scottum on 03-27-2004

"An American Double IPA" 75 IBU 8.0% abv
View: Beers (9) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Heady Topper Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,072 | Hads: 11,563
Photo of sjverla
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

16 oz can into Piraat tulip glass

Nose: Tone of pine resin. Prickly, sugary grapefruit with a hint of prune.

Appearance: Hazy amber-copper with perfectly sustained head and great lacing.

Taste: Just a downpour of hops. Very bitter and herbal. Almost medicinal in a tasty, holistic way. A touch of lemon, a very slight hint of strawberry. Lively carbonated feel and a super-long bitter finish.

Overall: Just ridiculous. An inordinate, unprecedented amount of hops. However, it does fall off quickly. These cans are about 10 days old. The first one I had two days ago was slightly more citrusy. Absolutely no complaints though. Totally fantastic. HUGE thanks to my brother Mike for the Christmas gift.

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Photo of BTVflatlander
4.86/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Drank from the can, per its request. Having had it both ways, however, I can attest that my evaluation remains a perfect score regardless.

A: (from a previous experience) golden orange and cloudy.

S: Powerful citrus hops, a bit of pine.

T: Initial overload of citrus and tropical hops with a bit of pine under there. Faint malt that is certainly there but not overwhelming. Not overly bitter and extremely refreshing.

M: Thick and satisfying.

O: Full disclosure, I am firmly placed within the Heady camp of the great DIPA wars. No doubt, having regular access to Heady is one of the greatest joys of living in Vermont. That said, I recognize the danger of the hype surrounding a beer like Heady. I have not drank nearly enough beer--let alone DIPAs--in my life to claim to know what is and is not the best beer--or IPA--in the world. What I can say is that, before first trying Heady Topper on my 21st birthday thanks to a couple generous friends, I absolutely loathed anything IPA, having preferred stouts and the maltier side of the beer spectrum. I never understood the so-called "hopheads" when all I could taste was overt bitterness and strange combinations of malts and hops. I suspect the primary culprit is the inability of lesser breweries to achieve an ideal hop-malt balance. To this day I still cannot finish most IPAs and DIPAs. Regardless, the perfect score I've given is due to the fact that Heady made me love hops and IPAs. It is undoubtedly the best beer I've had in my short life of drinking and it would be my choice for the only beer to drink for the rest of my life. I plan on staying in Vermont as long as possible to realize this possibility. That said, don't listen to the hype, try it for yourself. Even if you don't think it's God's gift to man, few can discount that its a treat to enjoy at least once.

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Photo of Flip4beers
4.43/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank in the can.
Overall taste is superb. Worth the hype. Never liked it too danked or too bitter but this beer is so balanced. I wish I was alot closer so I can get access to the source but it is a pleasure to have tasted the best.Cheers! I did a trade that made me have second thoughts but I am thankful I went with it. Thanks bmx87!

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Photo of DuBeats
4.9/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is absolutely delicious, and the smell is unreal. Very difficult to acquire but isn't too expensive if you can find it, and well worth the attempt if you find yourself in the area!

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Photo of HossMcGraw
4.71/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Oh man was I glad to score one of these! I poured a little into a glass to see what it looked like; nothing special but you're supposed to drink it out of the can so..not applicable?

About halfway through opening the can mango, grapefruit, and honey filled the room and that's before the damn thing was even open! The aroma is just outrageous. The flavor is incredibly tropical, filled with ripe melon, pine, lemon and more candy-like grapefruit juicy sweetness. Ridiculously unique and delicious. Some serious craftsmanship went into this shit. Bone dry finish beckons you for another sip.

Mouthfeel I found a bit flat; I guess some people like that, but I prefer lively carbonation and I think this would benefit from that--again, a preference thing. Overall I'm blessed to have had the #2 IPA on here and feel it's worth the hype. Bell's Hopslam is very similar to this and is another excellent beer that will suffice quite nicely til The Alchemist and I again cross paths.

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Photo of dejrrma
4.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

16 oz can. Drank straight from the can. no freshness dating. thanks to markasparov for this one.

a- the haziest ipa i've ever seen. extremely murky and lots of floaties. Has with a nice, fluffy head. a bit of lacing.

s- out of this word. has a huge wave of piny hops and grapefruit and orange, and every other delicious thing you can imagine.

t- the juiciest ipa i've ever had. this is mind-blowing. i can taste and smell this beer even after i put it down, and putting this beer down is really difficult. this is like the biggest citrus orgasm in a beer ever. the hops in this are delicious, but the maltiness in this beer is equally insane.

m- incredibly well balanced. the perfect carbonation. i can't say anything else. But at 8%, this is the most drinkable beer I'eve ever had.

o- This is for Mark: Heady Topper...How do I begin to explain Heady Topper? Heady Topper is flawless. I hear a case of this stuff should be insured for $10,000. I hear Heady does car commercials...in Japan. Heady's favorite activity is knocking people senseless over the head with its awesomeness. One time, John Stamos drank Heady on a plane...and said it was pretty (unbelievable). One time, it punched in the face with its deliciousness...It was awesome.

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Photo of mriley1984
4.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Absolutely love me some Topper. This is by far one of the best beers that I have had. The only other beer in my opinion is the triple play ipa from Lawsons. They upped their production so its pretty easy to get. Still sells out the day of delivery though..

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Photo of biglobo8971
4.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

poured from can into glass ( I did not heed the cans direction )
have had this beer several times and love it more each time I have it. Absolutely delicious.
pours a golden amber orange, nice 1/4 inch head with lacing present the whole glass. The smell is purely of hop, nice dank sticky hops. Taste is hop forward with a great balance of sweetness and bitterness. The mouthfeel is incredible, dances off the toungue.
Will seek this beer often, good thing I have a regular hook up for it or I do believe I would go into withdrawels.

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Photo of snilsen13
4.76/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I wish I had poured this out, but my host insisted we drink it from the can. Despite this, it smells full of hops with fantastic nose from THE CAN! Other canned beers (Oscar Blues, Hazed and Infused) can't touch this!

Simply put this is an awesome double IPA and is something brewers around the country need to measure themselves against.

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Photo of neophilus
4.89/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Yes I have enjoyed it straight from the can, but today I am reviewing in a glass.

Pours a straw colored gold, mostly clear with a little bit of haze. Foamy white head on top begins to fall quickly. Decent lacing.

Intensely pungent grapefruit aroma explodes out of the glass. You can smell it from 5 feet away. All citrus here, rich and thick in the air. Just a hint of malty sweetness underneath reminds me this in not in fact a freshly sliced grapefruit.

Sweet malt on the palate with sharp grapefruit citrus dominating the taste buds. Smooth even though my mouth is drenched in sweet citrus. There is hop bitterness in there but I forget all about it as I swim through the rich grapefruit flavors.

Slightly dry finish, crisp grapefruit aftertaste. Clean citrus lingers on the palate long after the previous sip.

There is an underlying sweetness to this beer that keeps it from being a straight up grapefruit bomb, but it finishes dry and it is not cloying. Extremely refreshing and nearly overwhelming with hop flavors - if there was a flavor I would want to drown in this would be it.

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Photo of henskejk
4.89/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Drank straight from the can, which was purchased the same day of canning. This particular can was drank 1 day after canning.

A - though drank from the can, had a 2 oz. sampler on tap at the brewery when purchasing and the appearance was a cloudy golden yellow with a good amount of white head

S - Delicious hop aroma with citrus and a bit of pine

T - very smooth, just like described on the can, this packs a lot of hop flavor, but not in an abrasive way. Also a little malty sweetness to round it out.

M - medium body, with a good amount of carbonation that makes this pleasant to drink.

O - Great beer, something I can enjoy over and over again

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Photo of MA_hops
4.86/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

In all honesty this beer is #1 for a reason, hype alone it's still the most complex beer that i've ever had. In one sip it goes from citrus bomb to dank, back to citrus and then finishes dry with pine like hops. So many flavors and the hop aroma smell should be a scented candle! The only beer to come close, complex wise is "SWISH" by Bissell Brothers!

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Photo of laintringulis
4.11/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in an unchilled beer glass.

Appearance: Dark Yellow/orange with a large amount of yeast suspended in the beer and at the bottom of the glass. Small this white/beige foamy head that lasted throughout drinking. Small amount of lacing.

Smell: sweet malt, slightly piney, fruity, vague pineapple, mango, warm caramel smell

Taste: smooth, slightly piney on the front with a pleasant oiliness. Pineapple, mango, papaya, and slight citrus in the middle. Very pleasant juiciness. Slightly bitter and dry finish. Leaves you wanting more.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, pleasant mouthfeel with pleasant dryness on the finish. I would prefer a little heavier body, but that is my preference.

Overall: For the style, this beer looks a mess, but it tastes and smells great and I could easily drink several and not realize it. Definitely a beer to check out!

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Photo of youbrewidrink
4.67/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This review is long overdue, I have been drinking this beer since the beginning.

The head on this beer is always ample and sturdy (hence the name), it's a nice cloudy straw color.

The nose is pure hop and cleanly so. You really need to spend some time inhaling this before you taste this beer.

The taste is all that you expect and more. The hop profile is complex, so describing this as piney or citrusy is not an accurate way to describe this beer. The malt backbone is light and present, yet not in the way.

Considering the abv & amount of hops this is a very drinkable beer. I'm glad to see that John was kind enought to bottle a few of these so that BA's from beyond have a chance to give it a try.

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Photo of KomodoDragon
4.75/5  rDev +1.9%

As instructed, drank from the can.

As mentioned on said can, this was waves and waves of hops. Bitter grassy, herbal up front, and crisp transition to a full mouthful of dry hop explosion on the finish. Lingers like no other. Intense without losing its identity as a brew. Not over-hyped in the least.

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Photo of 33nickadams
4.52/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my neighbors Nate and Erika for bringing this back for me. This is a Holy Grail beer that I have wanted to try for a long time now.

I can see why they say to drink from the can. It's a cloudy, murky yellow amber color with a slight head. It reminds me of homebrew in how it looks. I guess I have gotten used to super bright IPA's like the ones from Stone. The appearance is the only knock. The smell is magnificent. Super citrus, pine and resin. Upon tasting, I really can't believe the lack of bitterness that does not come with all that hop flavor. The hop flavor must come from a killer hop stand. Small amount of sweetness at the end of the sip, but make no mistake, this is all about hop flavors and aromas. I've never had an IPA quite like this. Mouthfeel is moderate and well-carbonated. Overall, this is a new type of IPA that I will look out for. Huge hop flavor and aroma and slight bitterness. This one kills it!

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Photo of andilane
4.21/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured it into a glass, color wise pretty lack luster. Definitely a unique style of IPA I hadn't really had before. Sort of a cross between classic hoppy, bitter west cost and malt forward east coast styles. Great aroma, very balanced bitterness but for me - didn't quite live up to the incredible hype. Delicious beer, absolutely but left me wanting a little more.

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Photo of krustster
4.99/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I actually liked this better from a glass than the can. Furthermore it apparently no longer has the disturbing pulpy appearance of years past, and looks pretty good. Just a cloudy orange color, nice foamy head and all that. Definitely lives up to its reputation but I have to say if you don't have access to this, New Glarus Scream is pretty darn similar in taste.

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Photo of Tobes181
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - Even though you are supposed to drink from the can i poured a little bit out just to get a look at it. Pours a very light orange, with almost no head.

Smell - Very hop full aroma. hints of citrus and heavy pine, i would even say it has a canabis type aroma being very grassy and piney.

Taste - Hops are strong forward and stay consistent all the way through. Hints of pine and grass.

Mouthfeel - very rich mouthfeel, staying wet on the palate making you want more.

Overall - this beer is perfect, very complex and well balanced making it one of the best IPA's out there.

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Photo of danh53
4.6/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque straw color. Looks like grapefruit/pineapple juice. Big aroma of citrus and tropical fruit with slight addition of fresh cut grass. Taste is grapefruit, pineapple, mango, grape, and dank hops. Its not too sweet or too bitter. The bite from the hops is just enough to balance the juicy fruit flavor. Mouth feel is medium and very creamy with a dry finish. Definitely lived up to the hype. A very well crafted beer.

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Photo of GeckoPunk
4.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As instructed, I drank this AMAZING beer directly from the can as well as from a tulip glass. Hands-down, no-doubt one of my Top 3 IPAs of all-time...

Appearance - 4.5 only because the beer does show a lot of sediment that settles at the bottom of the can/glass, but I actually love a beer that has a little "meat on the bones". After pouring in a tulip glass, there was a 2 finger, slightly off-white, tight bubble formation head.

Smell - OUT OF THIS WORLD! There are huge wafts of pineapple and grapefruit to this beer. Heady Topper has an uncanny ability to perfectly mesh the fruit scent with fresh, piney hops. If I were a Genie, I would love to live in this can as my bottle.

Taste - Explosion of hops that resonates in your mouth, perfectly balanced by the slightly-bready malts. And when I say "balanced", I am generously favoring the highly-potent fruity hoppy goodness of this beer. A MUST have. I forgot to mention, one can't even taste the whopping 8% ABV from this beer due to its' heavenly hops.

Mouthfeel - This unpasturized beer has a medium-bodied mouthfeel. Certainly not as light as your typical APA/IPA or as heavy and thick as a Porter/Bock, etc... but it does feel semi-dry after drinking. Mouthfeel and Appearance are overwhelmed by this beer's IMMENSE smell and taste.

Overall, in my opinion, any beer connoisseur needs to add this beer to their beer-"bucket list"... ESPECIALLY for hopheads.

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Photo of ChrisP802
4.6/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

If you're into IPAs, this is the beer for you. Drink from the can, as soon as you open the smell hits hard; Intense hops. Taste is just like the smell, punches you in the face with the hops. With the high IBU rating it's not a surprise. Easy to drink, but stay away from too many as you'll get numb from the flavor.

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Photo of StinkyFishBoys
4.71/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Finally got to try this beer. It's an IPA alright. It was like that special Crest toothpaste that kept tingling in your mouth long after you were done brushing your teeth. I think it got recalled for poison or something. This beer was not poison. It was very good.

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Photo of ProudBeerSnob
4.94/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Believe the hype!

Poured from can into shaker pint. Cloudy to say the least, lots of sediment In the straw colored beer. Solid not so foamy head that leaves some wondrous lacing throughout.

Resins piny hoppy dank goodness in the nose, with more to follow in the taste. Mouthfeel is thick and the beer is tasty.

I will NEVER turn down this beer.

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Photo of mountsnow1010
4.59/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A hazy gold with a frothy head and nice lacing
S grassy hempy pineapple just begins to describe it
T smells like it tastes and a solid bitterness
M crisP and clean
D three or so would be great

Short review from iPhone but this beer is so delicious


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Heady Topper from The Alchemist
100 out of 100 based on 2,072 ratings.