1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. 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.

8,412 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,412
Reviews: 1,655
rAvg: 4.73
pDev: 7.82%
Wants: 5,451
Gots: 1,774 | 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: 8,412 | Reviews: 1,655 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wagenvolks
5/5  rDev +5.7%

wagenvolks, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of yapi
4.95/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

well, there's some hype about this one, and I hate trains, but I'm on it. Was lucky to get 16 heady's through a trade in person in Bruges, thanks Hopo ;-) Already had a couple of previews through tendermorsel, and knew what I was getting.

For me this is the best Dipa I've ever had. Period. It's just that good. I'm still getting used to drinking it out of the can, what somewhat takes the "appearance" note away, but I'm really sticking my nose in there, and have to keep myself from a binge-drinking session. Drinking this is just a wonderful walk in Dipa park... so complex it's scary, the finish is lingering, time stands still after you finish a can. Only prison can keep you from opening a next one... They've been canned a bit more than a week ago, and for the first time I don't think I'll have any problem finishing the next 14 cans within a week... might share a couple, but not too many!

yapi, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of InspectorBob
4.75/5  rDev +0.4%

InspectorBob, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of rastapenguin22
5/5  rDev +5.7%

rastapenguin22, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of taylorcp
5/5  rDev +5.7%

taylorcp, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of JohannBock
4.97/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

HUGE thanks to my awesome girlfriend for bringing me a can of this back from thanksgiving break.

A: Can looks awesome but I had to pour it. Light yellow-orange on the edges with a deep orange in the middle. Hazy. Lots of floaties in it. Not a bad thing though. Poured a 2 finger head, white.

S: Nice resinous hops. Piney with a hint of toasty malts in there.

T: Just wow. Flowery up front followed by a brief malt interlude but then it's all hops again. Piney flavors, ending with a puckering bitterness. Really long finish makes you pine for more.

M: Medium mouthfeel with enough carbonation to not overpower you.

O: Lives up to the hype. Awesome DIPA, wish I could have access to this all of the time. Could easily drink this beer for the rest of my life and be happy.

JohannBock, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of TheBandit1
5/5  rDev +5.7%

TheBandit1, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of Jnorton00
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Jnorton00, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of TheDudeRules
3.63/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very hazy amber pour. Sediment is suspended throughout. Two fingers of pillowy off white head. Scant lacing is left behind on my glass. Hops and citrus collide in my nose. Looks and smell are living up to the hype. The first striking character upon taste is the creaminess. Incredibly so especially for an ipa. Pine and grapefruit up front. Sweetness to finish the swallow. Ends lightly bitter. Honestly it is not as hoppy as I expected. Very easy to drink regardless that it is an imperial.

I find I had a preconceived notion on what it was going to be. Pure greatness. Well, it isn't. It's damn good but not as much so as the hype train says. I'm trying not to have a mind explosion right now. All hail the king of imperial, Abrasive from Surly.

TheDudeRules, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of Diomede
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Diomede, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of trapper2408
5/5  rDev +5.7%

trapper2408, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of EKen33
5/5  rDev +5.7%

EKen33, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of cbeer88
4.9/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Reviewed from a pair of fresh 2 day old cans. One was poured into a Duvel tulip, and one drank straight from the can for comparison.

Appearance: Full can takes up the majority of the glass, with the last couple of inches providing a nice creamy white head to the top of the glass. Color of beer is a pretty honey orange amber color with very little light coming through.

Smell: Perfect. Pine, grapefruit, and other hints of citrus mingle with a touch of sweet malt smell. It really doesn't get any better than this. If you visit the cannery there is a potent hop smell in the air, and it smells exactly like the inside of a can of HT.

Taste: About like it smells. Perfectly balanced - it's full of citrus and pine hops up front, with a nice bitterness on the finish. The malt gives it a very slight caramel flavor to keep this beer from being an abrasive over the top hop bomb. Alcohol is simply nowhere to be found - incredibly masked for an 8% beer.

Mouthfeel: Pretty full bodied for a DIPA, very creamy and smooth. Carb was a bit on the low side but perfect for the beer.

Drinkability: Extremely high. Aside from the extreme hops, you wouldn't really know this is a DIPA. Alcohol is nonexistent, and I can't really disagree with the brewer in the hypothetical shotgunning ability of HT. :)

Overall: I've now had this guy on draft, in the can, and out of the can. Any way you take it, it's an amazing beer. I do feel that straight from the can had a bit more hoppy flavor, but pouring it gives you the killer nose plus the ability to see the beer. Net-net I'll probably go with what I'm feeling at the time.

cbeer88, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of Ajlvt
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Ajlvt, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of lanbewardin
5/5  rDev +5.7%

lanbewardin, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of pranaferox
5/5  rDev +5.7%

pranaferox, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of Genuine
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Genuine, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of AshleyMiller
4.63/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

finally getting around to reviewing this. about 10 days since its canning. poured into my hill farmstead pint glass.

a - pours a cloudy orangeish-golden, too cloudy to see through, with a beautiful finger-width thick creamy head with great lacing as well

s - total hop blast to my nostrils, with some sweetness hidden in there. very pleasant aroma. some pine, grapefruit, herbalness, and a hint of marijuana as well

t - very balanced and representative of the smell - all those flavors are in there. balanced exceptionally by malts. quick bitterness that doesn't last long

m - medium to full-bodied, moderate carbonation, alcohol hidden very well, as I know from experience

o - is it homerism? maybe, but I think this is about as good as it gets. definitely right up there in drinkability and quality with fresh pliny on tap. is it better from a can? maybe, certainly doesn't get worse, but figured it was worth reviewing out of the glass. simply amazing and i'm so lucky to have this so readily available.

AshleyMiller, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of Dizbro21
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Dizbro21, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of thepeter
5/5  rDev +5.7%

thepeter, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of auroracrisis
4.6/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A fresh can into a standard pint glass.

Hazy golden yellow with orange highlights, some floating sediment can be seen and a decent amount of lazy bubbles that raise to the top. A thin white head rests at the top and some lacing happens as the beer is drank down.

Pine with mango and pineapple greet your nose, then move into grapefruit like citric qualities. A soft graham cracker like sweetness layered below that, with a fresh cut grass and peach aroma. Pretty awesome smelling, and unoffensive even though it has that pine resin in the forefront which I typically do not care for.

Opens with more pine resin, then moves into pineapple sweetness with grapefruit zest to compliment. Softer notes of graham cracker, mango, and that nice peachy sweetness. Great stuff.

Crisp, medium bodied with a bit of stickiness and a touch of drying.

Awesome representation of pine resin with notes of grapefruit and pineapple, with a softer graham cracker like sweetness. A top 10 beer right now that lives up to the hype in my opinion. Glad they have made this one more accessible.

auroracrisis, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of DaveHS
4.9/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of only a few 4 packs left at a Burlington area grocery store. The beer guy said it would be gone soon, as the first order of 160 cases disappeared in less than 4 days.

A-Not sure. They reccomend drinking it out of the can. I don't entirely trust that advice, but since there's a whole 4 pack, I'll give it a shot. (Edit: I poured out a little bit just so I could give a rating. Rusty orange with a thin, bone white head. No lacing.

S-As soon as I pop the top, bold, vibrant hop aromas. I can smell them from a few feet away. Resinous pine needles, spruce, grass clippings, tangerine skins,skunky weed,grapefruit juice...I could go on. There's plenty going on here.

T/M-Reminds me a lot of Russian River Blind Pig. From the first sip it's clear this beer is in the same echelon as the best IPAs the West Coast has to offer. The malt profile is thin and bready, acting as a skeleton for the muscular, assertive hops. Leans towards the piny side of the spectrum, with some undertones of dry bitterness and fresh cut flowers. The finish is dry without coating the palate.

O-Really great. Top notch. If they can start producing enough of this to get it outside of Vermont it could become formidable competition for Pliny or any of the other highly regarded West Coast hoppy beers.

DaveHS, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of Hessian257
5/5  rDev +5.7%

Hessian257, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of mnbearsfan
5/5  rDev +5.7%

mnbearsfan, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of mecherd
5/5  rDev +5.7%

mecherd, Nov 26, 2011
Heady Topper from The Alchemist
100 out of 100 based on 8,412 ratings.