Heady Topper | The Alchemist

2,187 Reviews
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Heady TopperHeady Topper

Brewed by:
The Alchemist
Vermont, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
"An American Double IPA" 75 IBU 8.0% ABV. "Drink from the can."

Added by scottum on 03-27-2004

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Reviews: 2,187 | Ratings: 12,251
Photo of HopfordBeerham
5/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer that changed beer drinking for me. This is by far my favorite beer. Complex hop flavors that hit you over and over! I can't get enough of it! Every time I crack one open its like the gates of Heaven are opening for me, while simultaneously my scalp is exploding off the top of my head. Delicious!! Quite difficult to come by, luckily my Grandma lives in Vermont and is able to get a "somewhat" steady supply to me. Salud!!

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Photo of FSUlaw-and-brew
4.62/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look: for the little bit that I did pour from the can, its hazy like the NE DIPAs, but its a little ugly
smell: straight dank hops, resiny, pinecone
taste: matches the smell, resiny, like a liquid pine cone, but in a good way
feel: damn near perfect, super smooth and drinkable

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Photo of clayrock81
4.35/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Received a four pack as a surprise from my wife as an early Valentine's Day present so my ratings might be a little eschewed going up as simply put, how could one not enjoy trying this beer when they opened up the fridge and saw a surprise waiting for them (on Super Bowl Sunday no less)? (I tried both from can and glass so my review is kind of a compare/contrast review of the two methods)
Poured a cloudy orange body with two finger head that slowly died and left lace ring down glass. I like the aroma better in the glass as beer has a condensed citric, piney hop aroma w/ hint of medicinal quality in can but out in open, as expected, more floral hop notes along with grapefruit and minor malty sweetness come out. Smooth, fuller bodied beer, I find that it's a little more smooth and easy drinking out of glass than can, however, a little bit more piney and dry out of can in terms of hops. Out of glass, I still get a piney, earthy, bitter, dry citric hop presence but I find that the hops aren't as strong/tastebud nuking by a slim degree and there is a touch more of grapefruit/tropical fruit and malt bite out of glass over can.
Honestly, I don't think this is the greatest or most unique IPA that I've ever had; however, it is the most consistent and easily enjoyed IPA that I've had, meaning it's not too sweet or hopped up for style nor any funky out-of-character additions, and the best way I can sum up this IPA is that I drank my four pack in one sitting without a problem and wanted more, more and more.

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Photo of MTLDOG
4.82/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

This beer lives up to the hype. I drank it from the can except for a small amount I poured into a Tumbler glass to check out the color and look etc. Straw yellow to gold, 1 finger of head with some lacing. A little carbonated looking. Smell was outstanding. Hops and citrus peel. Extra ripe mango, a little cannabis even. Taste was hoppy, spicy and a little bitter. Citrus and sweet very well balanced. Just outstanding. One of the best beers I have ever had. Mouthfeel was medium and the aftertaste is tart and bitter, in a good way. World class

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Photo of leroybrown10
4.23/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep gold with heavy haze. Almost reminds me of pineapple juice though a shade darker. 1 finger off white head is sticky and fairly dense. Leaves heavy lacing behind.

Heavy grapefruit and pine hop aroma. Get orange, mango, pepper, and lemon zest, too. Light biscuit-y malt. Just tons of hops. Orange really grows.

Get the orange and grapefruit in particular on the first sip. A bit of grassy and earthiness. Pine hops next, strong but still overshadowed by the orange and grapefruit. Some biscuit-y, doughy malt. Noticeable, but not enough to balance the hops.

Oily, sticky mouth feel. Medium carbonation. Hop bitterness all over the place. Lingering orange notes. Despite the overwhelming hops, still has a decent smoothness.

Big, bold, classic DIPA. Huge hop flavors.

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Photo of BIll_Currie
4.86/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

finally got my hands on a 4 pack of this. pretty much lived up to my expectations. very well made beer. great smell when I opened the can. good color and great taste.

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

Look: hazy, pillowy head (poured into spieglau for sharing)
Smell: floral, vegetal
Taste: not too bitter at all, grassy undertone, citrus peel
Feel: a thick ipa

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Photo of kitch
4.74/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A 1 pint can canned on 15th December 2015 (I would have drank it earlier but was very sick for a long period of time) and tried from the can at first then poured into a Spiegelau IPA glass.

Appearance: It poured a hazy golden yellow orange colour with a two finger white head that dissipated fairly quickly but left nice sticky lacing.

Aroma: As soon as I opened the can the tropical aromas immediately came pouring out, but there was still a hint of the metal from the can. After pouring it into the glass, the aromas were not as strong but better with a mix of tropical pineapple, mango and citrus mandarin, orange peel and lemon zest. There was also a hint of pine.

Taste: Strong juicy citrus grapefruit and pine with a hint of tropical mango and pineapple. Nice front loaded bitterness which continues into the aftertaste. On the can it says “drink from the can” so I tried that as well. I have to say that taste is just as impressive from the can.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall: An excellent DIPA. Must buy and taste fresh if possible. I only wish I wasn’t very sick when I received it… but I know I wouldn’t have been able to enjoy it as much if I drank it a month ago as I wouldn’t be able to taste or smell much. Although it says to drink from the can, which I did try, I still prefer to pour it into a glass to enjoy. It allows you to enjoy its look and gives a clearer aroma. Well worth the hype.

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Photo of LordSMAF
4.92/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Believe the hype. Heady Topper is the real deal.

A crazy amount of hops with nice piney and citrus-y notes. Medium mouth feel and surprisingly smooth for 8%.

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Photo of HopHunter19
4.96/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - okay, so from the can I'd give this a 5, the can is cool as hell. Also if I was thinking about the dank, pure, no censorship nature of this beer I'd give it a 5 too. But for fairness sake, it is a murky yellow/gold color with a nice white head that sticks and leaves decent lacing. If any other beer looked like this id knock it for the look but this one it's just so fitting.
S - huuuuge juicy orange juice, papaya, mango, overly ripe fruits, grapefruit, dank ganja, the garlic/onion is in there in a good way. It smells like ripe fruit juice.
T - dankapotomous rex. Ganja and so juicy, orange, mango, papaya, pineapple, melon, overly ripe fruits, grapefruit. Then there's garlic onion that balances it out in a good way. So resinous...
S - medium bodied, so juicy, alcohol completely covered, aftertaste is bitter orange peel, mango, papaya
O - this beer has officially destroyed my ability to drink other ipas. It's beautiful, like a sunset on a southern California beach, only its from the exact opposite end of the country. Absolutely amazing stuff.

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Photo of Jeffacarp
4.55/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer changed DIPAs for me. Its Juicy, dank, and has the perfect amount of bitterness to balance out the malt profile. The 8% is well disguised behind layer after layer of tropical aroma and flavor. I definitely prefer the "drink it from the can" philosophy. Although I love the hop flavor, I find it unappealing to see the particulate floating in the glass.

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Photo of fireazzi
4.56/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is the beer that started it all for me. First hoppy beer I ever had where I was just blown away by the taste. It is a great beer and I always try to share it with people to see if they will like it. Great beer to get someone into craft beer with if you can find it. Luckily I'm in the North east and have some access to it. Love this beer my all time classic double IPA, hop bomb!

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Photo of Dhyan
4.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Luckily I was able to get 1. Believe the hype. This American IIPA is arguably the best overall in its class.

Had it straight from the can (poured just enough to peek at the color).

Too bad there is no distribution in NY/NJ.


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Photo of SuperChugLosAngeles
4.83/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is one of my favorite beers since I most recently started drinking them. I've drunk about 8 of them in the past 5 months. I recommend this beer, it is the best NE IPA in the world.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.6/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Gold color, massive amounts of sediment throughout it, not turbidity, but rather a decent beer with chunks, rather than finer particulates uniformly dispersed throughout the beer.

Aroma was plenty hoppy, plenty green, plenty pungent. Im getting a lot of amarillo and simcoe out of it.

Drops all the usual pine, grapefruit and tangerine descriptors, a malty, earthy vibe underneath it all. Pretty dank, bitterness not grating, supportive. A great east coast dipa, easily 1st tier, world class, there is no argument.

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Photo of md1313
4.37/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Well worth the wait, being aself decribed non-IPA this was very drinkable beer.
L-Hazy, light head.
S-Floral smell, a bit tart
T-Hops punch you in the mouth, somewhat bitter.
F- As expected.

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Photo of DVoors
4.74/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A- poured really hazy with a decent white head. Really hazy

S- smelled really juicy and a little floral. Smelled like grapefruit juice.

T- huge hop flavor hits you like a brick wall right off the bat (in a good way). Huge citrus fruit (strong grapefruit with a bit of orange or tangerine) and the intense bitterness follows and continues to linger long after your last sip And longer than in any other beer I've ever encountered.

F- this beer had a bright character and although it technically probably finished really dry, the hop resins were so apparent and numerous, that bit actually seemed to add body to the beer.

O- I can see why this is such a highly regarded and sought after beer. Really really good.

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

This beer changed my life. I used to just drink beer. Now I experience beer. First time I had this it was like an explosion of hop flavor went off in my mouth. I poured it into a glass contrary to the instructions on the can. Flavors were like nothing I had ever experienced. Such complex citrus, pine and malt flavors combined to produce a brew that is truly life changing.

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

With such hype and such high expectations, it seems inherent to grade this DIPA more critically and harsher than others. Even in doing so, this is an absolute one of a kind brew and the definition of a world class, perfectly balanced, hop explosion. An unreal drink. From aroma to taste to feel, it is truly unique and incredible. I am trying to compare it to pliny (elder) because I drink it so often and it has been my undisputed favorite imperial, but this is just so different that there is no way to compare. Both are as good as it gets and I cant wait to include Heady as a regular brew to mix up my usual pliny evenings. If you havnt had Heady, you need to.

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Photo of JMD
4.88/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: Hazy cloudy golden yellow with foamy white head. I only poured a small amount out since its meant to drank right from the can

S: All hops. Big citrus with pineapple, mandarin orange and tangy lemon zest. Some pine and earthy hop resin as well.

T: A hop explosion. Think of every adjective used to describe a hoppy a beer, and this has it. Citrus, pine, floral, earthy, you name it, its in this beer.

M: Juicy, oily and delicious.

O: This beer lives up the hype. Worth seeking out if you have the opportunity.

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

Absolutely delightful double IPA. Consumed directly from the can about two weeks old (unconfirmed). The blast of hops in the mouthfeel after a fantastic nose was just unreal.

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Photo of superspak
4.47/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16 ounce can into tulip glass, no can dating. Pours fairly hazy/cloudy golden orange color with a 2 finger fairly dense and fluffy white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice dense foamy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, papaya, mango, melon, lemon zest, orange rind, light pepper, pine, cracker, bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Fantastic aromas with awesome complexity and balance of juicy citrus/tropical/piney hops and light-moderate pale malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, papaya, mango, melon, lemon zest, orange rind, light pepper, pine, cracker, bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Large amount of pine/citrus rind/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, papaya, mango, melon, lemon/orange rind, pepper, pine, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/tropical/piney hops and light-moderate pale malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero astringent hop flavors after the finish. Moderate dryness from bitterness that increases through the glass. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, sticky/resinous, and fairly creamy/bready balanced mouthfeel that is awesome. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an absolutely amazing DIPA style. All around incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy citrus/tropical/piney hops and light-moderate pale malt flavors; and very smooth and easy to drink for the ABV. A insanely delicious offering.

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Photo of J5iel
4.83/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

After hearing all the hype surrounding this one I finally got my hands on a case (less than a week old). Upon first opening the can I was immediately drawn in by the juicy aroma, after tasting I felt a little bit let down as in my mind THIS was THE BEER to try! The typical IPA notes are all there and in fact this was far smoother than most I have tried. In closing it's a great VT beer and definitely in my top 10 but is it the end all of beers? I don't think so.

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Photo of krs0123
4.93/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The best IPA that i've had. Period. Citrus and pine accompany the hops. A very serious but not distracting malt backbone results in the most balanced ipa i've had. Perfect.

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

Bought two cases up in Burlington, Vermont. The best IPA I've ever had. I prefer the taste of IPAs because of their huge flavor and hoppiness. One thing I'll tell you, you don't get the after taste of typical IPAs. You can drink this 8.0 ABV as a session beer.... You'll be passed out of you drink t as a session beer though. The unpasteurized canning feels like it's more potent than typical IPAs. I love it. Don't miss this one. Take the trip to Vermont.

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Heady Topper from The Alchemist
100 out of 100 based on 2,187 ratings.