Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.
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Ratings: 9,479 | Reviews: 3,109 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Reaper16:
4.43/5 rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
served on-tap at The Alcove, Tuscaloosa, AL, into a mason jar
Pours out exactly as HopSlam always does: a warm, melted caramel color with 1.5 fingers or more of sudsy, pearl-white head. Lacing managed to be pretty adequate in this mason jar I'm stuck drinking the beer out of.
I have a natural reaction that tells me if I think a given Double IPA is amongst the elite of the style: if upon the first sniff, I crack a wide smile and laugh. It's a reflexive action, like kicking your leg if you get tapped on the kneecap. Every first sniff of HopSlam is a grin and a guffaw for me. I love this lupulin. The pineapple husk is so immediate and strong and lovely. The papaya wafts up and around the pineapple with such a complimentary grace. The passionfruit, no scratch that, the passionfruit-flavored Starburst aroma is also very nice. Not very much pine at all on the nose. The smooth tropical fruits are backed up by HopSlam's hefty malt profile. This isn't East Coast; there isn't an overabundance of caramel malts. But the honeyed sweet spine of the beer is there for the smelling. Great, great aroma, as always.
The taste of this particular keg is just a hair under the quality that I get from a fresh bottle. Unfortunately, Alabama received their HopSlam about two weeks later than it needed too. Remember: when it comes to beers that are this intensely hoppy, they literally get worse each day after the minute they are bottled. This is still stellar, but the malt flavors are creeping up in the profile more than when this beer is super-fresh, and the tropical fruits are less distinct, less complex (but more rounded, which may be a positive for some palates) than when super-fresh. Still stellar, though. Lovely gushes of hoppy flavors. More pine and floral notes than the nose hinted at. Yummy.
This has got an East Coast-like mouthfeel. Usually, you never see me giving high mouthfeel scores to big, sticky Double IPAs, but HopSlam makes it work. I think the key is that they rely less on overpowering caramel malts and more on the honey sweetness. It's substantial without taking away from the hop flavors. Flavors which, by the way, are so good that I could drink this forever. But this beer being 10%ABV, that's a biological impossibility. 4.0 is as high as I can go given that this beer will get you tipsy with a quickness.
This is the third year that I've managed to do a HopSlam review. Having reviewed it out of the bottle, from a cask (!) and finally getting to an on-tap review, I'm running out of ways to review it. Maybe next year I'll get a mini-keg.
Serving type: on-tap
01-29-2011 21:18:17 | More by Reaper16
More User Reviews:
4.81/5 rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
12 oz bottle poured into tulip glass. Pours a dark honeyburst color with a medium sized white head that has great retention and lots of lacing.
Smell is of floral hops, honey, hints of citrus, and a sweet toffee .
Taste is sweet up front with honey and a bite of grapefruit, combined it is nice. As if moves through the palate, the alcohol shows up and reminds you this is 10% and finishes with punchy hops. Mouthfeel is a bit on the oily side, smooth, fairly heavy and even has some creaminess to it.
Overall, an awesome Imperial IPA that you have to make sure and get each Winter before it's sold out.
Serving type: bottle
07-20-2014 02:20:13 | More by HuskerTornado
Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 9,479 ratings.