Heady Topper - The Alchemist

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Heady TopperHeady Topper

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10,765 Ratings

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Ratings: 10,765
Reviews: 2,149
rAvg: 4.73
pDev: 6.98%
Wants: 8,013
Gots: 3,327 | FT: 54
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 (13) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,765 | Reviews: 2,149
Photo of MDDMD
4.79/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-golden amber color with a nice white head and good lacing, hazy with white flaky sediment

S-grapefruit, floral, and light pine, vey fragrant

T-citrus flavor with predominance of grapefruit and floral nots with a nice bitter hop,finish, great balance of flavors

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, crisp mouthfeel

O-great DIPA with a nice balance of flavors and a great example of the style

Photo of BeerForHokie
4.75/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-Poured half into a tulip glass to see the color and drank the other half from the can as instructed by the can itself. The color is a beautiful bright orange/dark yellow. Floating sediments...looks like champagne.

S-Oranges. And you can really smell the hops, anticipating it to be super bitter.

T-Mouth full of grass and sour grapefuit and oranges. HOPS HOPS HOPS

M-Quite a bitter after taste, dry.

O- Thought I had tasted them all when they came to IPAs and DIPAs but whatever your opinion is on this one...it's truly unique. Just very very bitter, hoppy and grassy but very enjoyable

Photo of Sarlacc83
3.9/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Trade from JMRSN. Thanks!

4oz poured into glass to get a view of the appearance. The rest tasted from the can as per instructions.

A: Cloudy straw color. My previous can had some floaters in it, but this is devoid of the blobs.

N: Missing the hop blast I'd hoped for. Grapefruit, pineapple, pine. This falls really short of the high water mark of Sculpin, IMO.

T: Bitter hop goodness. Plenty of earth and pine with pineapple, mango, and pineapple laced through. This is well balanced and the 8% is muted if not non-existent altogether. Definitely finishes bone dry.

Mouthfeel: Expands across the palate. No complaints here.

Overall: Definitely enjoyable, and a beer I'll be glad to have time and time again. I just wish I got more than a whisper of hop on the nose.

Photo of davey101
4.74/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16 oz can. I poured half into a pint glass and drank the other half from the can ala the instructions. Not sure when this was canned, but it comes from the late March release to a few Massachusetts beer shops.

A - Super hazy dark yellow body. Lets just a bit of light through. Some floating sediment and yeast. Soapy off-white four finger high head forms after a quick pour. Settles down to a dirty cap with plenty of lacing and retention. Leaves behind a slick coating with each sip.

S - Super juicy grapefruit with some peach, mango, and orange. Just a hint of some biscuity and bready malts. Simply perfect.

T - Orange juice. A touch of sour grapefruit and light floral and grass. Not getting much of a malt backbone. Just some faint buttery biscuit notes that work really well with the intense orange and grapefruit notes. Really clean and refreshing with a pleasant but quick bitterness on the finish. Medium moth feel with low carbonation. Alcohol is not noticeable at all. Taste is identical from the can...

O - This is unbelievably easy drinking, I'm afraid this four pack isn't going to last very long. Which sucks since the inflated shop price was $18. I don't think its one of the best beers in the world, but it is really high up when it comes to DIPA's.

Photo of shleepy
3.89/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from can into snifter glasses.

A: Golden color. Very hazy, with plenty of sediment floating around.

S: Some floral hops, but mainly tons of citrus.

T: Tastes pretty dry (in a good way). The bitterness is not extreme, though some stays in the aftertaste. The main flavors are very pleasant - floral and citrusy (though less citrusy than I expected from the smell). Any bready malt flavor is masked or balanced quite well by the hops.

M: Medium body and carbonation. Certainly not as heavy as would be expected based on the ABV.

O: Quite a nice IPA. I wasn't expecting much, given that it's an East Coast brewery (no offense, but the hoppy beers are not necessarily as world-renowned as some of the West Coast ones), but I was pleasantly surprised.

Photo of jibbyvonjibb
4/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Copper color. Large fluffy white head. Sediment floating.

S: Grapefruit. Tropical fruit. Some pine.

T: Nice balance. Fruity flavors and some maltiness balance bitterness. Finishes quite dry.

M: Medium body. Medium carbonation.

O: Quite good. About as good as IPA's get. And actually drinkable!

Photo of GregSVT
4.03/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz can into a tulip

A: Pours a hazy yellow with a nice white head that fades to a ring and leaves some lacing on the glass.

S: The nose is full of tropical fruits along with nice pine and hop aromas in the background.

T: The taste is similar with great flavors of tropical fruits like pineapple, apricot, and peach as well as some pine and nice malt sweetness in the background.

M: The feel is medium bodied and kind of creamy.

O: This is a pretty damn tasty DIPA but really not that different from others of the same quality. It's good but doesn't have that quality that says "wow" to me.

Photo of CloudStrife
4.71/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16oz can with sample poured into goblet. From the brewery.

A: Pours a very hazy orangish amber with a 1 finger white head. Quick to dissipate it is easily resurrected with a swirl. No lacing on the sides. A few bits of debris visible in the body.

S: Loads of citrus hops up front. Simply amazing. Grapefruit, orange and pine in there as well. Sweet fruit like malts become noticeable as it warms up.

T: First sip is a delicious blend of floral and citrus hops. Very clean hop flavor with mild malt in the background. Unlike other hop bombs its not as much of a slap in the face but a delicious blend of tasty hops.

M: Very easy drinking for something with so much hop taste. Nice nectar like quality, on the low end of carbonation. Doesnt leave a sticky film in your mouth either. The 8% alcohol is hardly noticeable. But hard to tip back a few in a row.

Overall I'd say this beer is worth the hype surrounding it. One of the easiest drinking and tastiest Double IPA's hands down. Still hoping some day I can get this locally.

Photo of Streetcore
4.94/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured a sample in a glass and drank the rest out of the can

A: Pours a hazy orange

S: Tropical fruit, fresh cut grass, lemon zest, pineapple, lots of herbal hops, musty hop smell

T: Pineapple, herbal hops, grass, grapefruit, some light pine

M: Light, crisp, lingering tropical fruit hop bitterness

O: Easily one of the best DIPAs out there. The smell of this beer alone is unbelievable. I can't wait until The Alchemist can get Topper in to the Boston market regularly. Cheers!

Photo of sukwonee
4.84/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks you Kyle for this... man I need more of this for the summer!

A: Light Orange color with one finger head, good amount of lacing. Lots of bubbles. Some stuff floating around. For a beer that the brewery recommends to drink out of the can, it looks decent.

S: Orange zest Lemon citrus grapefruit, pineapple - best smelling DIPA ever!

T: This has got to be my favorite DIPA, I have ever had. This beats Pliny (both Elder and Younger) and Dreadnaught. Perfectly balanced, yet still hoppy as hell, sweet but not overly sweet... I pick up pineapple, grapefruit, lemon, orange, little bit of pine. Hoppy bitterness is there, but not predominent - just kicks it slighly at the end. Taste doesn't linger as long as Pliny, but it's amazing.

M: Compared to other DIPAs, this one is very refreshing. Lighter in body, higher in carbonation. I liked it - I thought it matched (or added) to the experience.

O: This is the DIPA to beat at the moment for me.

Photo of axeman9182
4.44/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Two 16 oz cans (one direct from can, one poured into a glass) courtesy of Kadonny, and poured into my petite Duvel tulip.

Heady Topper pours a hazy slightly dull orange. There are some tangerine highlights, and visibility is minimal. There's about a finger and a half of cream colored foam crowning the beer, and head retention is just OK. Lacing is fairly nice though, more of the glass is left covered in it than not. The second pour does result in plenty of sediment hanging in suspension. The nose is absolutely wonderful. Tons of mango and pineapple, with some more overtly citrusy grapefruit present in more of a supporting role. The flavor profile leads off with a bit of candied sugar sweetness. The bitterness that rolls through next is surprisingly mild/smooth. I kind of wish it was a little bit more intense/attention grabbing. The hoppy close though is just as fantastic as the nose though, with tons of tropical fruit and just a ittle bit of citrus. The mouthfeel is spot on. The body's not quite Belgian style brew dry, but it has just a little bit more heft to support it. Meanwhile, the carbonation explodes on my palate, helping the potent hoppy flavors to come alive. Heady Topper's a stunning beer, and one of the abslute best double IPAs I've had to date.

Photo of Luk13
4.89/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Several cans, from the can. Aroma is a burst of juicy fruity hops; pinneaples, mangos and oranges. Some wet grass and resinous hops which tends to fade as the beer gets older. Taste: I’d say it is the best tasting double IPA I’ve ever had. Flavors are very coherent with the aroma. Definitly hops at its best. The perfect level of bitterness with a sharp citrus touch. Balance and drinkability is through the roof and alcohol is very well hidden. The ultimate beach beverage

Photo of jmdrpi
3.84/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

16 oz can, no date.

appears a hazy rust orange color with tons of floaties. bright white head that fades. obviously this is why they want you to drink from the can.

aroma is hop forward obviously. orange, lemon, cut grass, slightly earthy too. taste is super cirtusy. a touch of biscuity sweet malt, but not much. tasty though if you're looking for fruity citrus hop flavors.

medium thickness, but it coats the tongue, a bit oily. good carbonation level, but I'm not a fan about the oily feel.

good, but not sure it lives up to the crazy hype and higher price. seems quite similar to other citrusy DIPA's. still glad I got to try it though.

Photo of lovindahops
4.97/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I can't believe I forgot to review this beer! I grabbed a case when I was in Vermont. Poured into my alchemist pint glass

A- heady pours a bright orange body that glows as it touches down in the glass. A plethora of floaties are all around. Much more than Smutty Finest and Flower Power. Great white lacing on the sides of the glass, although the head of foam faded. Just a completely hazy orange brew that is definitely different than anything I have seen before

S- this is the Armageddon of hops! A whack of citrus and piney hops that is the most massive I have ever come across. So tropical and completely exposes you to a complete whiff of hop resins. This is no question, the real deal. I feel like this glass could be an air fresher of hoppiness that never fades. Very impressive

T- unbelievable flavors. The citrus and piney flavors are simultaneous and provide and delicious blast of sweetness in tune with the bitterness. I can't recall any experience that is quite like this other than flower power and pliny. The taste experience is totally positioned for a bold hop experience. So much flavor meshing into a flawless taste

M- talk about a curtain of hoppiness draping your mouth with flavor. This is so delicious with flavor all over

O- Heady and Flower Power represent the east coast shouting back at the west coast saying we can do this too! This is an incredible experience of drinkability coupled with an onslaught of hoppy flavors. What a DIPA! I need more! Come to Syracuse Alchemist!

Photo of Coleybeerman
4.47/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Welcome to Massachusetts The Alchemist Heady Topper!

A - Poured into a Duvel glass with a hazey orange color and a thick head that dissapated quicker than I expected.

S - Piney, Ctrus, Resinous Herb like nose if you know what I mean!

T - Spicey hop bitterness. Warm alcohol, with a resinous piney Citrus flavor that lingers.

M - Full body with a bitterness that imparts an almost chewable mouthfeel.

O - I really enjoy the aggressiveness of the hop aroma and abv/hop forward flavor and mouthfeel.

When it comes to beers of this caliber I am not looking for smoothness.. I like my senses to be awoken and this beer delivers.

Photo of drgarage
4.54/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed from a can with a small glass pour to get a sense of its appearance.

A: Very light golden to pale yellow appearance with vigorous carbonation. Big head with minimal lacing. Bubbles constantly rising toward the surface and then plunging down deep. Much less cloudy than I had been led to believe.

S: Huge pine hops, sweet citrus overtones. As big a hop nose as I have ever encountered with none of the harsh or onion esters that can ruin a really nice thing.

T: Damn. This is a world-class DIPA. Is it better than Elder? I'm not sure. It's definitely in the same class. Big, rich citrus and pine out the wazoo. Totally love this stuff. Can't believe this doesn't have wider distribution while Lagunitas goes everywhere. I like the Lags, but they've never bottled a beer this good. If Sucks tasted like this, I wouldn't drink any other IPAs.

M: Perfect for an IPA, a little bit of stickiness but mostly just crisp and refreshing with a lot of lingering big hop flavor.

O: As good as hyped. Seek this out if you can find it, and then hoard what you get your hands on.

Photo of kbuzz
4.43/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 16 oz can into a schooner-style glass. Can't come up with one single advantage of drinking from the can...plus I can't review the appearance that way (did take a sip or two from the can in between refilling my glass and it didn't affect the taste at all). No date found anywhere.

A: The appearance isn't overly impressive, really. Pours a cloudy light orange/copper color. A half finger off-white/eggshell colored head fades rapidly, but there is plenty of carbonation bubbling up through the beer. There are floaties! My favorite thing to see in beer...not that I doubted it would be, but it's definitely unfiltered.

S: Smells very juicy and absolutely hop forward. Lots of citrus - orange, lemon, grapefruit primarily.

T/M: Despite the description, this is a very bitter IPA...definitely smacks you with it up front...then gives way to hop flavor with plenty of citrus - mostly grapefruit and lemon notes. A bit of pine in the finish. I'm glad not to get the orange in the taste that I got in the nose though - not my favorite flavor. If I didn't know how to make beer, I'd never guess that there was any malt in this whatsoever. Finishes with a near perfect dryness for an IPA.

O: This is a raw, down-and-dirty, throwback beer. Haven't had one like this in a good long while. My favorite thing about it is that it's different from the other big DIPAs that everyone gushes over. The market is begging right now for a more traditional, citrusy, good ol' Imperial Hop Bomb - which is what this is.

Photo of superdan73
4.76/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It's as good as advertised. Period. If you're lucky enough to find a can, don't pass it up. I could go on and on about the nose, head, color, mouthfeel and finish but everyone else has already said it. In my book, this is the king. It ruined me for other IPAs and until I can find more I'm drinking Sculpin and Deviant Dales.

Photo of BrewsoBrewco
4.89/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Got in the Master's LIF from Number45forever. Thanks for the awesome beer. Been drinking for the last few days. This is the first review.

A-drank from the can as stated and also poured into a tulip once. The color is a really great yellow pale. Right what i would be looking for in DIPA. the second pour came out with the chunks. Probably the hop resin that is supposed to be left in the can,

S- Opening the can produces a hop bomb. It can be smelled across the room. Putting your nose u to it is quite glorious. Citrus and a really great pineyness come out. Delicious

T- Holy hops Batman. The hops are certainly there. It is bitter but not over bearing. It is fruity and piney, and citrusy and really delicious. It puts the hops at the forefront but so gracefully. It's not like a bitter bomb, but also not to malt forward. Really incredible

M- So good for the beer and the style. I love the Elder but I always felt like it lacked in mouth feel. Great in taste and smell, but the mouth feel wasn't there. Not with HT. It is long and lingering. It feels full bodied without getting the extra maltiness. Wonderful

O-I They say to drink from the can and i say yes(though it is awesome out of a glass as well). I think this is an exceptional imperial Ipa. Something to be duplicated, and sought after. I have had and love some Pliny, but I am taking the Topper side. Both great beers but the Alchemist takes the top spot in this battle.

Photo of lucas1801
4.89/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Not my first go-round with this great beer but my first review of it.

A: Even though poured into a glass and it has it's cloudy/chunky look I won't penalize here as it is meant for can consumption. Plus I look at those chunks and smile as I know what awaits me.

S: Yes there are some hops in this bad boy; resins, pine and some tropical fruits.

T: This is where this beer shines, perfect balance for the style. Solid upfront bitterness that is followed by a great hop flavor profile, and the bitterness gently lingers the whole time and for a time afterwards.

M: It is a DIPA and it is dry as it should be while maintaining a solid malt presence that is very clean.

O: Get it and drink it, it is worth the hype. If trading for it make sure it is fresh as it does lose it's hop profile faster than most other DIPA's I have had.

Photo of BilbosNuts
4.44/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to baconsausage for tossing a couple of these in as extras in a trade.

Only poured half the can into a tulip since it advises to drink from the can.

A: Pours a very cloudy light sunburst color with a small creamy white head. The head quickly reduces to a thin film on top. Some spotted lacing is left behind.

S: The hop profile aroma is very good. It starts off with tropical fruits (grapefruit, pineapple, mango), then moves onto a light dank, resiny smell. There is also a bit of pine.

T: Like the aroma, but much more bold. The tropical fruits are lighter in the taste than the aroma which lets the other hop flavors come through more. Much more balanced hop profile.

M: Medium bodied and perfectly carbonated to allow the flavors to dance across the palate. It finishes with a slight bitterness.

O: This is definitely one of the best DIPA's out there. Just as good as my beloved Pliny. Highly recommended.

Photo of s1ckboy
4.74/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Hazy yellow/orange. 2-3 fingers of fluffy white head.

S - Tons of Pine (even from the can), malt, a bit sweet.

T - Tons of bitter/piney hops at first. Some citrus. Malt and a bit of sweetness in the finish. No alcohol to speak of.

M - Smooth, nice clean carbonation.

An amazing DIPA. My favorite for sure.

Photo of mdurkee11
4.95/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Heady Topper is simply the best Imperial IPA I have ever tasted. Pours out of the can with an aroma of citrus and hops. The unfiltered appearance of this beer works so well with the aroma and adds quite a bit to the experience. The taste is a complex mix of heavy citrus and light hoppy flavor. Very well balanced with a crisp, enjoyable finish. A world class beer out of a can.

Photo of Texasfan549
4.85/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Drank from the can as was suggested by the can.

S: Even without pouring into a glass I got a little aroma as I brought the can to my face! What I got was hoppy tropical fruity heaven.

T: Massive tropical fruits up front. Mango, Grapefruit and even a little unripe bitter Pineapple. Next come the hops that balance out the beer perfectly and leave a slight lingering bitterness on your palate. Alcohol is nonexistent even at 8%. Could drink this when I wake up until I go to bed

M: Light to medium carbonation and mouthfeel. Perfect for a double ipa

O: Perfect double IPA. Flavors are spot on and drinkability is perfect. Awesome!

Photo of mooseo
4.91/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Half a pint poured into tulip. Sampled the rest from the can.

A - Hazy sunset orange with a small bubbly white head.

S - Enormous citrus aroma of tangerine, orange peel, mango, grapefruit, and pine resin. Extremely inviting and pleasurable.

T - A blast of grapefruit, mango, and piney hops. Fresh, raw orange. Mild bitterness throughout, but sweet at the same time. Finishes with earthy pine, honey, and tropical fruit flavors. Robust with nice complexity.

M - Medium-full body with decent carbonation. Very thick for a double IPA. Smooth with a dry finish.

O - This just might be my favorite double IPA. Incredibly delicious and highly drinkable. I hope Philadelphia starts to gets a steady supply of this stuff.

Heady Topper from The Alchemist
100 out of 100 based on 10,765 ratings.