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Heady Topper - The Alchemist

Not Rated.
Heady TopperHeady Topper

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

8,241 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,241
Reviews: 1,628
rAvg: 4.73
pDev: 7.61%
Wants: 5,342
Gots: 1,705 | FT: 34
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: 8,241 | Reviews: 1,628 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pauljunk
4/5  rDev -15.4%

pauljunk, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of SteelCityBrewery
4.98/5  rDev +5.3%

I was at one of my favorite beer stores when I heard that they had a case of Heady Topper in the back. I decided to pick two up to see what all the buzz was about. Brought these devils home and put them on ice for a rainy day. 8 hours later I decided it was close enough.

On the can it says that you should drink from the can to keep all of the hops aroma and flavor in the can. Of course, I had to pour a little into a glass to see what it smelled like. It had a very hoppy but fruity smell. Very aromatic like a good IPA should be. Drinking it from the glass made for a good hoppy IPA. Drinking this beer from the can made for a completely different beer. Much more of the hop character seemed to stay with the can and as for drinkability.... It was almost unfair. This is easily the most drinkable IPA I have ever had. Incredibly smooth and fresh with hints of hop "bite" that won't overwhelm. The one characteristic that supercedes all others is easily the drinkability of this beer. I have yet to try PtE or PtY but this goes down easily as the best IPA I have ever tried.

SteelCityBrewery, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of Caudalie
4.88/5  rDev +3.2%

This, indeed, lives up to expectations. Grabbed 24 cans in VT while boating on champlain lake. Also got some torpedo, founder's centennial and ruination IPA from stone, but HT is way more interesting. First one was pretty good. The 2 lasts were just delicious.

A: pretty clear golden color, a tad cloudy

S: Really nice, with smells of resin, oranges. Smells like fresh hop pellets.

T: This is hoppy, with intenity and greath lenght, but wow, it's so balanced. It's bitter indeed, without being austere. This is pretty drinkable for such a hoppy, high alc. ale.

M: pretty smooth, nice carbonation. Looong aftertaste, with total balance.

O: Really impressive. Indeed the best IPA I've tried, not cause it's the boldest, but because it's elegant in its own way. Nice one...

Caudalie, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of crewfan16
4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

crewfan16, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of CruisaC
4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

CruisaC, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of usurping
4.7/5  rDev -0.6%

Wow! I received a four pack as a gift this weekend. Had heard about the beer before but put it in the fridge and continued the night. Had two last night and one tonight. What an amazing beer. Every aspect of this beer- down to the clear instructions to drink it straight from the can (cant truly rate the appearance because I drank em from the can)- make it a very special beer. After having three and checking the reviews I was not surprised to see that it is so highly rated.

Smell is delightful with hints of mango.

Taste is not over the top hops. They are there and you are expecting it but I think the amazing thing about this beer is that the taste is over powered by the hops.

I could go on but many others have done it already with some very elaborate and detailed descriptions.

usurping, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of BiltmoreShores
4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

BiltmoreShores, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of acorre08
5/5  rDev +5.7%

acorre08, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of Odysseyalien
4.25/5  rDev -10.1%

Odysseyalien, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of jmorris74
4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

jmorris74, Jun 17, 2012
Photo of pburland23
4.6/5  rDev -2.7%

Thanks to my buddy for bringing two cans of Heady Topper to our college reunion.

This is the second of two. I drank the first from the can as instructed. But, I figured I'd pour the second one for the review.

Poured from a 16 oz. can into my CBS snifter.

Appearance: Incredibly hazy honeyed colored pour. Totally opaque. Thin layer of wispy white head. Not much in the way of head retention but very nice lacing.

Smell: The hops aroma just pummels you with each whiff of the beer. Huge grapefruit, mango and peach aromas along with some herbal notes. As a hophead, this is an incredibly pleasing smelly beer. It's over the top for certain but it works

Taste: Not nearly as bitter as I expected. It's rife with tropical fruit tastes including grapefruit and mango. It's dank, juicy and delicious. Dry finish with a mild booziness. A super tasty DIPA though I could stand a little more balance.

Mouthfeel : Thick and extremely resinous. Mildly boozy but quite drinkable.

Overall: This is an excellent beer but it's a little green around the edges particularly when drank from a glass. It's a taste bomb from a can. Enjoyed it very much.

pburland23, Jun 16, 2012
Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.88/5  rDev +3.2%

I drank the first sips from the can. Wowza! That's some insane hoppiness. As a force of habit, I had to pour 3/4 into a pint glass. The pour revealed a hazy golden blonde liquid topped with a big bubbled, chunky head. A few chunks of lace cling to the glass and the head recedes a bit but never disappears. A dusting of coarse sediment lays at the bottom. I'd suggest putting this beer in a glass if only because it looks so nice.

The aroma is potent, unrestrained hops. Luscious, perfumey hop flavors abound. The taste reveals a great diversity of hop flavors - in concentrated form. Tangerine, pine, green melon, aspirin, soap, grapefruit rind all abound. Malts are detectable under the din of hop insanity, but they never even approach balance with the hops. The mouthfeel is thick with resiny, mouthcoating hop oils. Carbonation is moderate. The finish is very hoppy and the bitterness lasts an eternity.

This stuff is crack for hopheads. extremely hoppy, no hype or marketing, just a very raw and concentrated hop flavor. I highly recommend this to the discerning hophead. I'd say it might be a bit much for anyone but.

CAMRAhardliner, Jun 16, 2012
Photo of cspieth
4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

cspieth, Jun 15, 2012
Photo of SeanGC
4.98/5  rDev +5.3%

Oh, how I tried not to love this beer...

I've heard a lot of great reviews about Heady Topper from a few of my homebrew club members and quickly drove out to pick some up. Needless to say, the beer easily surpassed my expectations.

The IIPA poured hazy, with visible hop material that settled to the bottom of the glass. The haze makes it impossible to see through the beer, and the color is similar to that of caramel candy (dark gold).

The aroma is hard to miss, and it hit me as soon as I opened the can. However, the smell is not overwhelming, but instead very smooth, inviting you to drink up. The hop aroma reveals the complex hop character of the beer.

The hop flavor creeps up on you after swallowing. However, it doesn't have that drink-with-caution bitterness that can overwhelm the palate. It takes all of the tastiness one would love about hops while leaving some of the bite behind.

Medium body, leaving some bitterness laying on the tongue and throat, but still enjoyable.

It's one of those beers that everyone should drink at least once!

SeanGC, Jun 15, 2012
Photo of Crimsontider22
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Crimsontider22, Jun 15, 2012
Photo of ChadQuest
4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Nice loose and tall head over a straw colored body.
The aroma is great, a soft papaya like tropical fruit nose, with tangerine and grassy notes playing their part. More dry then juicy on the nose. well done.
The clean, dry, and tropical fruit notes continue here but with a more citrus lean to them. A touch of honey like sweetness to complement the bitterness, and a touch of cracker.
mouthfeel is moderate, not dry or sticky.


ChadQuest, Jun 14, 2012
Photo of powder245
5/5  rDev +5.7%

purchased on ebay, and after arriving i quickly purchased again!

one of the best tasting and smoothest ipa's i have ever tasted... my fridge currently has bells hop slam, pliny the elder and just finished the last of the hoptimum, but this is now the can i reach for!

first can i poured, despite the cans instructions, in to a tulip glass. the head was a nice off white, but nothing too heavy. color was exactly what you want in an ipa, orangish amber. the smell was really fresh and lovely! even my wife said it smelled good! :)
it's all up hill from here... the first taste lets you know your drinking something special. your second drink assures you you weren't delusional, and by the third your already checking if you have more!

buy this beer! buy it by the case if you can! keep this beer in your fridge all year round!

powder245, Jun 14, 2012
Photo of CBlack85
4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

CBlack85, Jun 12, 2012
Photo of AbeFroman
4/5  rDev -15.4%

AbeFroman, Jun 12, 2012
Photo of M27
4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

M27, Jun 12, 2012
Photo of JimmyTango
5/5  rDev +5.7%

JimmyTango, Jun 11, 2012
Photo of sammo
4.5/5  rDev -4.9%

sammo, Jun 11, 2012
Photo of Derek
4.78/5  rDev +1.1%

A=4: Hazy gold with plenty of yeast floaties, nice white head with plenty of retention, some lacing.

S=5: Just opening the can releases a plethora of grassy aroma that's a bit dank. Poured into the glass and it's still very dank, with mango, nectarine and candied pineapple.

T=4.5: Solid bitterness, but it's not overbearing. Initial hit is a bit briny, but that subsides to mango, papaya and candied pineapple... nectarine, tangerine, sponge toffee and hints of biscuit round out the flavour.

M=4.5: Slightly off-dry and very smooth, with some hop acidty.

O=4.5: Overall this is a really great brew. It doesn't have the assertive, piny, resiny bitterness of some, it's just a pleasant hop bomb. Low cohumulone hops?

HUGE thanks to Rutager!

I've had a couple more cans that were even fresher (without the yeast floaties), and I have to upgrade this review. Although cloudy, it pours with a nice head. Despite the amount of hops, body is incredibly smooth. Best thing in a can?

Derek, Jun 11, 2012
Photo of Lordquackingstic
4.98/5  rDev +5.3%

Pounded my first HT on my break at work today in fifteen minutes since it was consume on premises only so this review might be a little muddled, but hey, at least I got some Head.

A: Drank it right out of the can like it says to. The dude next to me drinking it had a cloudy honey straw color with a little bit of sediment. No time for a glass for me. Right down the hatch it went.

S: Holy monkey fuck this smells amazing. Take a really nice piney/citrus/grapefruit IPA and times it by a hundred. Smells like freaking heaven. I still have the can and every time I walk by it I give it a whiff and it still has a potently delicious aroma even though it's all gone.

T: Instant punch of citrus and grapefruit with a hell of a hop punch, but without the bitterness. Although the people next to me didn't agree with this, I got a slight bready aftertaste. Not overwhelming, just soft and pleasant. Like the can says, this is dangerously drinkable. I could drink this stuff all day it's so damn good and it goes down so easy. Pounding a pint in 15 minutes was no trouble at all.

M: Hop resins stick to the palette like glue and linger long after the sip is finished. Super smooth.

O: I've always been afraid of trying whales like this sometimes, because they never seem to live up to their names. This definitely lives up to its name. I'm so happy I got a chance to try this. This is probably the best beer I've ever had.

Lordquackingstic, Jun 10, 2012
Heady Topper from The Alchemist
100 out of 100 based on 8,241 ratings.