Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

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3,260 Reviews

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Reviews: 3,260
Hads: 11,641
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.54%
Wants: 2,391
Gots: 2,637 | FT: 63
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beernbbq on 04-14-2004

Starting with six different hop varietals added to the brew kettle & culminating with a massive dry-hop addition of Simcoe hops, Bell's Hopslam Ale possesses the most complex hopping schedule in the Bell's repertoire. Selected specifically because of their aromatic qualities, these Pacific Northwest varieties contribute a pungent blend of grapefruit, stone fruit, and floral notes. A generous malt bill and a solid dollop of honey provide just enough body to keep the balance in check, resulting in a remarkably drinkable rendition of the Double India Pale Ale style.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 3,260 | Hads: 11,641
Photo of Qbdoo
3.97/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I finally got my hands on this.
Looks great, a murky golden hue. Unfiltered? I should check.
Intriguing scent. I don't want to say I smell the honey, but there's an odd sweetness that is not familar to me. Smells more barleywine-ish than DIPA-ish. Mouthfeel is its strongest quality. Dense and oily. Feels big. Taste is a bit of a puzzle for me. Not typical for a DIPA. Piney hops on the opening but a great deal on honeyed sweetness on the end. I really like it but feel like it gravitates toward an American style barleywine, which isn't a criticism. Overall, I can see why this gets so much hype, it's a great beer, but perhaps not as mindblowing as you would be led to expect. (682 characters)

Photo of eaglescout
4.48/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: orangey gold, clear

S: resiny, dank, alcohol, little citrusy

T: malty, smooth bitterness, citrus like after taste

M: medium thickness

O: good beer, good version of a classic IPA (186 characters)

Photo of PostRockandCats
4.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy light copper with little head. Suprisingly malty at the nose. Very piney and resiny with a nice balance of bitterness and sweet. A+. (156 characters)

Photo of sgameroz
2.3/5  rDev -48.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Bitter without body. Piney without character. Underwhelming to be nice. Can't judge fairly being from SoCal with everything else we have access to, but you can tell t's an attempt at being something it aspires to be. Hopslam is overhyped and glorified Stone IPA...maybe even closer to a Sierra Nevada pale ale. (310 characters)

Photo of aleigator
4.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Many thanks to Charlie for the bottle!

2015 vintage

Pours a big, froth head, with tiny, crystallic bubbles in it, while the beer has a clean, darker amber, orange color.

The aromas contain a big load of tropical hops, featuring peach, mango and blood orange, which are utmost juicy and ripe. This gets balanced by bready, slightly biscuity malts, accentuating a zingy, glazed lemon peak on top of the distinct fruitiness. The nose is very rich and intriguing, as it is bursting with mellow, luscious tropical fruits, very well compounded.

Taste begins with crisp lime among bready malts, while the beer drinks very smooth. A vivid kiwi prickling gets added to the taste, as well as more lime and sunny, louche grapefruit. Honey is certainly noteable, while the alcohol is not detectable at all, and it provides the fruity hops with a ripe, sappy note, as it leads the malt flavor closer to the hops by adding a striking biscuity quality to them. The beer doesn't turn sweet though, it is still centered around the hoppiness, which is yet evolving on the palate. A distinct, slick bitterness arises from the fruitiness, leading to a slightly dry, long lasting finish, continously using the hops as center of attraction, exhibiting a slightly piney note, blending smooth into the sapful fruits. The carbonation still adds a slightly refreshing impression, while the beer is heavier bodied, without loosing its typical IPA drinkability, ending with a unique honeyed, hoppy finish. (1,481 characters)

Photo of chrishiker1409
4.44/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Orangey, less than finger of head which quickly dissipates.

S: Pine, earthy

T: Picked up a little mango and pineapple in the front, which gets quickly owned by piney hop notes. At the end of the day, this is not a very well balanced DIPA. A hop bomb. Can feel some of the heat from the 10%. Alcohol is not completely hidden.

F: Medium Body, moderate carbonation.

Overall a great beer. I'm glad to finally have had it. I just wish some more of the citrus flavors would come out. They got blown away buy the piney hop notes at the finish and as the beer warmed. (581 characters)

Photo of MadCat
4.08/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Pours a nice clear golden color with a good fluffy white head that leaves good lacing

Smell: Piney, resinous hops. In your face. Nothing you can do about it otherwise

Taste: Again, more piney, resinous hops, good bitterness, light malts that don't really bring any balance to the game

Feel: Medium body, good carbonation

Overall: Good, but entirely overwhelming. Needs a little more malt to bring some balance to all of the hops. Not worth the hype (462 characters)

Photo of Roguer
4.33/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful orange/amber brew, just slightly hazy, topped my a humble snow-white head. Fantastic retention, and a nice line of lacing.

Fairly traditional IPA aroma: extremely juicy, loaded with citrus and tropical flavors, some pine, honey, and a balance of caramel and pale malt biscuit.

Flavor follows, with big, juicy hops up forward, balanced by a nice sweetness. No graininess to the malt profile; some honey and brown sugar and flat biscuit. Hops come in juicy, bitter waves: ruby red grapefruit, lemon, orange peel, resin.

The mouthfeel really is superb: crisp and bitter and balanced. Exceptionally drinkable; drinks like a 7% IPA, not a 10% DIPA! Almost effervescent, not-quite-dry finish, with a lingering bitterness.

The hype train with Hopslam may have run off the rails, or perhaps it has simply been eclipsed in recent years by the ubiquity of fantastic DIPAs (and even TIPAs). However, it is a very, very good beer. (933 characters)

Photo of joeylopes15
4.14/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Doesn't live up to the hype, stone brewing enjoy by 3.14.15 blew it out of the water, however it is a delightful beer. I will drink it again next year because it is plentiful around me, but I will not go out of my way for it. (225 characters)

Photo of golf_sierra
4.71/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Awesome aroma, great bitter citrus flavor.
Outstanding DIPA, but higher ABV presents itself and drinks a little heavy.
Kind of expensive, but worth getting a sixer when in season. (179 characters)

Photo of Neocyto
4.86/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Believe the hype! Nothing better than having my expectations surpassed. I was a bit underwhelmed with the carbonation... A tad more would have added another dimension to the drinking experience.
Well done!! (207 characters)

Photo of BucannonXC5
4.56/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ratings are correct below, but I changed some marks above to make the final rating as correct as possible with Beer Advocate's "revamped" system. The 4.56 overall rating is correct.

Type: Draft
Glass: .25L (8.5 oz.) glass
From: Blind Lady Ale House in Normal Heights (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $6.00
Purchased: Feb. 19, 2015
Consumed: Feb. 19, 2015
Misc.: N/A

Poured an orange, honey, mostly clear color with 3-to-4 fingers of off-white, rocky head when I got it. Some bubble streams coming up from the bottom of the glass. Great circular, spiderweb lacing on the sides of the glass. Average-to-above average retention. (Sight - 4.63)

Smell was pretty damn fantastic. Got tropical, Citra, flora, Amarillo, Simcoe, mango, orange and nectarine rind. (Smell - 4.75)

First thought on the taste was so smooth. Got Citra, floral, tropical, bitterness late, mango, Amarillo, honey, caramel, orange and nectarine. (Taste - 4.50)

Light-to-medium body. Oily-to-creamy texture. Average carbonation. Long, slightly bitter finish, but still smooth. (Feel - 4.50)

Just a terrific IIPA. Would love to have it again. (Overall - 4.50)

4.56 | 100 | A+ (1,140 characters)

Photo of Homers_Beer_Odyssey
4.75/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

APPEARANCE - 3FH that lasts, light, clear, amber.

AROMA/SCENT - Hops, malts, fruit, citrus, raisin.

TASTE - Hops, bitter, yeast, sweet, nutty, pine.

MOUTHFEEL/PALATE/TEXTURE - Decent carbonation, dry, smooth, lingering, warming.

VALUE - $9.00 for a 12-oz. draft. Average.

OVERALL/DRINKABILITY - Quaffable, ABV well-hidden. (328 characters)

Photo of Mbager1114
3.89/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I have had this beer for the past three releases 2013,2014,2015 from cable beverages in Bardonia New York. And i must say after drinking atleast 300 different ipa's in the past 3 years that this beer is completly over hyped. Yes its a solid dipa they hide the alchohol but there is something missing maybe it lacks a floral nose and a nice citrusy flavor but in my opinion i have had no name dipas better than this beer. For example the beer is just bitter nothing else not alot of malt to balance i think pliney the elder and heady put this beer to shame. (556 characters)

Photo of TheCraftBrewReview
4.52/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Over the past few years, I have encountered triumph and heartbreak when attempting to obtain an extremely hyped beer that was only available in limited quantity. After stalking the twitter feeds of local beer stores, I was able to confirm the exact bottle release for the 2015 Hopslam Ale at Green’s Beverages located on Buford Highway in Atlanta, GA. After practically colliding into a light post and almost running over a homeless man, I parked my car and sprinted into the store. Looking left then right, and not noticing anything out of the ordinary, the cashier grudgingly pointed to the back wall where there was a line of several people quickly forming. As each six pack was handed off to another enthusiastic beer lover, I grew more and more anxious, and my hands began to perspire. When it was my turn, I hopped to the front of the line with glee, only to hear the store associate bark, “That’s it. No more in this stack.” My mouth dropped, and just as I thought the nightmare had just begun, a pack of Hopslam was placed into my trembling hands. Let the games begin!

Appearance – 96: Poured the 12 ounce bottle into a tulip glass. I was first taken back by its magnificent, bright orange glow followed by the hazy cloudiness from being unfiltered. The 1/2 inch head provided decent lacing that quickly dissipated after the pour.

Aroma – 91: Up front there are notes of citrus and some pine. I was a little disappointed because I was expecting more of a punch in the nose, as the scent quickly tapers off.

Body & Texture – 97: For a massively hopped ale, this is amazingly balanced. There are many imperial IPA’s that exhibit a syrupy feel and tend to be heavy, but this is even-keeled and medium bodied for its beer style. It has just enough carbonation so that you are left with a crisp, smooth finish and the right amount of bitterness. Very refreshing.

Taste – 97: This is where Hopslam shines, as I feel exactly like the guy on the bottle label that fell flat on his back from the gigantic, overpowering hops. After my first sip, I am immediately overcome by a wonderful blend of tropical, citrus flavors along with strong floral notes and sticky, piney hops. Hints of grapefruit, orange, and stone fruit are complemented by a touch of sweetness from the added honey, which keeps the bitterness from overwhelming the palate. The alcohol is hidden well (for a double IPA at 10% ABV) and caught up to me quickly after consuming my second bottle.

Overall – 95 (World-class): I rank this imperial IPA in the same tier as Alchemist’s Heady Topper, Russian River’s Pliny The Elder, and Lawson’s Double Sunshine. At first, I was a little skeptical when the label indicated that the beer was brewed with honey, which is not typical for an IPA. After only a few swigs it became quite clear that the sweetness was what distinguished Hopslam from its predecessors and made me thoroughly appreciate this brew. I want to thank the folks at Green’s Beverages who provided me with daily updates from their Twitter page. (3,052 characters)

Photo of ajm5108
4.41/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Not as much hops as you'd expect given the moniker. Most of it comes in at the end with a lingering grapefruit bitter, though by no means something that is abrasive. Upfront you get mostly the sweet honey and candy flavor, even some burnt sugar leading into the fuller hop profile at the end. One of the easiest to drink double IPAs. (336 characters)

Photo of Mike-Dean
4.79/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Grabbed a 6-pack of this from local Safeway; cases were just stacked on the floor between the fish and dairy coolers. The beer poured a very nice, brilliant copper hue with slight haze. Smell is a nice blend of citrus with no hint of the alcohol bite; slight hop presence. Mouthfeel is wonderful, full impression. The taste is an interesting transition from citrus, to malty, honey, then to Vidalia onion, and finally to lingering blend of honey and hop bitterness. I think this might be the fullest spectrum of flavors across one beer that I have encountered to date. You certainly don't sense the 10% that will hit you full steam about 3/4 of the way through the glass. I love me some DFH 120 minute IPA, but for the price, I think this is the winner. (760 characters)

Photo of LanguedocRocks
3.37/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25


Way too sweet for my liking. It's not a bad beer, but it's nothing special. I would much prefer to drink the local DIPA's around VA/MD/DC then this. Maybe if the price comes down it will taste better. (212 characters)

Photo of lightsovrvegas
3.8/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This is an amazing ale. However, do I think its worth the hype no not one bit. Its has an amazing feel and the taste is great. but i really want more honey in the taste. I think you get that honey thickness and warmth in the feel but not in the taste. It looks like any IPA, idk why its even a qualifier. Smelled like an IPA. (325 characters)

Photo of couchsending
4.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Such a smooth DIPA. For 10% it's crazy easy to drink. Not the flavor explosion that the other highly rated doubles are but I'll gladly drink this again.. and again... and again. (178 characters)

Photo of Phigg1102
3.94/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I have to be quite honest, this is an ok IPA. I enjoy it and will drink again if I come across it in season without the fuss over where to get it. Not one of the top IPAs in the world by any stretch of the imagination though. Not even better than two hearted (not even close IMO). The hype is probably a result of the market being flooded by incredible IPAS in the last 5 or so years. This was probably the best around ten years ago, but now its being past over. My negative statements about this beer are not intended to make a claim that this is a BAD beer, IT IS GOOD! It is not however one of the best beers, or even IPA's that I've had. In any case I'll give a bit of a review as well.

Clear light amber in color. Slight honey in the aroma along with fairly heavy malt and a touch of booze. Nice balance of slightly bitter pine hoppiness and malt, the honey definetely brings the sweetness out a bit more. The body is medium with little carbonation. The bitterness lingers for a fair amount of time which is quite nice. (1,025 characters)

Photo of blakenarron
4.1/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pleasant to drink, however, not what I was expecting based off of the high demand. Taking into account the price, I can't see myself searching this beer out to drink again. (173 characters)

Photo of zander4dawin
4.23/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Bright golden beer with a thin head, sits in the glass with a bright shine waiting to be drank. Light, crisp, sweet body. Taste of fresh lemon grass, honey comb, butterscotch, pine, and orange peel. Alcohol is present on the nose but the smooth taste covers it nicely. (271 characters)

Photo of Garvey
4.88/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

What a great welcome to the Beer Advocate community. Berg77 generously gave me 2 bottles of this to try along with a plethora of Iowa Beer Distro tips and info. I knew Hopslam would be good, but I was beginning to think that it couldn't possibly live up to the hype.

I tried a glass up at a friends cabin this weekend and can say that I would not change a single thing about this beer. Looks beautiful in a glass; I could smell it all day; and it has a perfect balance of sharp, hoppy bitterness and delicate "nectar of the gods" sweetness. Would definitely drink another glass of this liquid gold...in fact, maybe I will today. Thanks again Berg77 for the gift! (664 characters)

Photo of BrewThru_29
4.65/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Yes, people will say this beer is overhyped. Maybe so. However, this is a very well balanced DIPA. Honey gives it a nice balance. Definitely worth seaking out once a year. (171 characters)

Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 3,260 ratings.