Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

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3,260 Reviews

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Reviews: 3,260
Hads: 11,639
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.54%
Wants: 2,391
Gots: 2,634 | FT: 62
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: 11,639
Photo of mrsoul12
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The name says it all. Extremely hoppy. Surprisingly drinkable considering the bitterness and the level of alcohol. Some lacing on the glass. Big hop aroma and flavor. Some sweetness balances things out. I would highly recommend this beer to anyone who is into hops. (265 characters)

Photo of mpensworth
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It's in my top 5 beers I've ever had, I must say...

A: Nice amber orange with a great foamy head.

S: HOPSLAM! The name says it all. Floral, citrus, pine, check check check.

T: Powerful hop citrus taste, hint of sweetness. Nice and bitter on the palate as well, slight bit of alcohol burn that I just love.

M: Good carbonation with a hint of syrup.

D: You could get into trouble quick with this beer. Highly drinkable for a 10% IPA.

I still remember how big my eyes got the first time I had this beer. It's been one of those things I only get to try every couple of years because we can't get it in Oregon. Love it. (621 characters)

Photo of guild337
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. I expected a big, in your face, strong IPA when I purchased this beer...which I would have enjoyed thoroughly. This was something altogether different and amazing. I have been a huge DFH 90 minute fan for a long time, and it has been my IPA go to. This has just beat the 90 unmercifully out of first position.

A - Nice frothy, yet quickly dissipating head. Deep golden, and nicely cloudy (unfiltered) color and consistency.

S - Holy nose full of flowers! This brew smells so lovely, and sweet. The full hops smell, matched with the honey is quite a unique aromatic experience.

T - Amazing flavors abound in this brew. I have not the vocabulary nor the palate to describe everything I am tasting, but I can assure you that all of them are delicious. Hoppiness that could so easily be bitter, but that trails off into subtle sweetness of the honey. This beer is perfectly balanced.

M - There is certainly some texture to this brew. I can't imagine what the IBU count is, but you can feel it. But still so enjoyable.

D - Not for the newbie, but so enjoyable...I think I'll have another right now. That makes it pretty drinkable...no? (1,141 characters)

Photo of Dannywhitewash
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

There was a lot of hype surrounding the release of this beer, and for good reason. This has quickly become one of my top beers and it never disappoints.

A- The beer is luminiscent, almost seeming to glow a little bit. Beautiful orange and coppery looking with a perfect head that leaves lacing down the entire glass. (beautiful)

S- The best smelling beer I have ever encountered. Grapefruit, orange, pineapple. Sweet.

T- Wow. Just like the smell!! the beer improves greatly as it gets closer to room temperature.

M- Smooth.. There is a little bit of kick to it, but not like you would expect from a typical DIPA. A little dry in the finish, but nothing feels out of place... very very balanced.

D- Amazing. 10%? This beer is fantastic. Now if only it were brewed year-round... Are you listening bells???

Thank you, Bells for this seasonal brew. I look forward to it year round. (887 characters)

Photo of alkemy
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

*Update from previous review: Just had this on tap a couple weeks ago (I've only been a bottle suckler) and it's even better. Main thing I noticed was a stronger mango and pine presence with a bit more resiny feel. Yummy!*

Pours gold hinting at orange with a fluffy white head that quickly fades into a thin mesh. Big pine and grapefruit in the nose along with peach, pineapple, mango, and guava...a nice tropical fruitiness. You even catch the slightest bit of caramel. For me, pine was the most prominent taste. It had a strong presence in the front and was the taste that lingered longest. In between there's a nice helping of citrus,pineapple and more malt presence than I was expecting. I typically like a DIPA with a more resiny feel, but I really enjoyed the crisp and clean feel this had. The drinkability is almost stupid. I'd never guess this to be anywhere close to a 10%ABV. The first time I had this I wasn't overly impressed, but after further review, this is a winner. (984 characters)

Photo of HopNelius
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served out of a 12 oz bottle and into an American pint glass.
Appearance-golden color, medium carbonation, nice lacing.
Smell-wonderful notes of citrus fruit coming through, nice hoppy smell.
Taste- heavy notes of citrus but well balanced, grapefruit juice, blood red oranges, tangerine.The alcohol does not even come through even thought it is 10 percent.
Overall-I have been waiting to try this for some time as they do not sell it in my neck of the woods. A freind from Ohio brought up a six pack this weekend and I was not disapointed, one of the best DIPA's I have ever had, amazing how it is 10abv and not boozy whatsoever, also the hops are wonderfully balanced. (688 characters)

Photo of gregy55902
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had this on-tap last month and it was extremely good. The bottled version doesn't disappoint either:

A - pours from the bottle into my snifter a subdued orange color with half a finger of white head. The head recedes leaving a nice ring of bubbles and foam in the glass. 4

S - Huge citrus hops, piney hops, honey, bready malt. Did I say HOPS? 4.5

T - Follows the nose, but is even more refined. Incredible balance. Citrus hops upfront, followed by a faint sweetness from the honey and a nice malt backbone. Like a fine wine it should be savored, but that is hard because it is so easy to drink. One review simply called it 'God-juice' and I cannot disagree. 5

M - Incredibly smooth. Alcohol cannot be detected. Perfect carbonation. I just want to drink more and more of it. 5

O - I have officially been HopSlammed. I only wish it was more available - I now see why this beer has a religious cult type of following. Best DIPA I've had so far. Now if I could just find Pliney... 5 (985 characters)

Photo of Tbn2
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to drxandy for this one. My first trade. Served from bottle to pint glass to belly.

A-A hazy golden brown with some head that settles rather quickly without much retention

S-With it being 100 plus IUBs, I was expecting to be overwhelmed with hops, but I wasn't. There is some malt dancing around there too.

T-WOW. The sweet malt gives way rather quickly to the hops and the hops never leave. They have a very good grape-fruity taste that balances perfectly with the sweet malt.

M-Goes down smooth. The dryness of the hops isn't overpowering and the carbonation is spot on.

What a beer! Unfortunately I only have one. Those that like a hoppy beer will love this one.

Bottoms up... (692 characters)

Photo of Budinetz
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Poured on draft in a 12 oz snifter at Molly's Irish Pub in Bethlehem, Pa

A- pours a light amber color with a white, frothy head. Beautiful lacing throughout the glass with each sip. Head seems to stay pretty well with initial pour

S- amazing, floral, earthy hop aromas with a very subtle bready malt essence. Surprisingly for a 10% abv beer, there is no harsh alcohol smell whatsoever!

T- touches of bitter hops mixed with sweet honey. Delicious hop flavor and smoothness with no harshness from the bittering or any ether/alcohol flavor from the abv. This brew is extremely well balanced and beautifully hopped to deliver a hop punch without disappointing on the malt end.

M- feels amazing on the palate! Very minimal carbonation, which a slickness on the tongue. A sweet touch from the honey but nothing overwhelming. Amazing. (831 characters)

Photo of WankelEngine
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass

A: Pours a head of one finger which quickly diminishes. The color is a clear golden honey with very light carbonation and mild lacing.

S: The smell is overwhelmingly hoppy and very sweet. It is reminiscent of citrus and pine. The citrus is the most notable scent. It almost smells like oranges or peaches.

T: The taste is amazing. The first thing you notice is the intense hops and high alcohol content. The taste of hops is prominent and bitter but not overpowering. This is less balanced rather than highlighted by some sweet malts. The citrus flavors here as much more subdued than they are in the smell. The light fruity sweetness and mild malt flavors meld perfectly with the excessive amount of hops.

M: The high alcohol content gives this beer a warming feeling as you swallow. What little carbonation there is amplifies this effect.

O: This is an impressive DIPA. Despite having a high alcohol content and bitter flavor, this beer is surprisingly drinkable and absolutely delicious. (1,043 characters)

Photo of CoastieSimon
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Pellinore1 for the fresh trade! Bottles 10093.

Wow! I now believe the hype of this beer. It is just great. Popping open the bottle and the aroma is amazing hoppy and honey coming thorough and it is just amazing. Next the Pour, I poured it into an IPA glass my friend gave me, not a big head but the color is beautiful golden amber, and the carb. bubbles in the sun made a cool little tornado type thing. Now the taste, you really do taste the honey right up front then the hoppy bitterness/pine taste comes through. It is honestly one of the best beer profiles I have ever had, everything blends so nicely!! Drinkability is great as I could def drink a couple but at 10% it will get you buzzin good after two!

Great Beer, if you don't have it in your area do everything you can to acquire it. (804 characters)

Photo of almychristopher
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

this beer pours crystal clear golden color with a white head that recedes to a thin layer of white lace. the smell is overwhelmingly hoppy with a bit of sweet malt and earthiness in the back. the taste is really nice with the piney hops and fruitiness up front, the dry bitterness at the end rounds out the flavor really nicely. the light mouthfeel and good co2 make the mouthfeel as good as the rest of the beer, the alcohol is well hidden to the point of disappearing, a very drinkable beer. (493 characters)

Photo of FanofHefe
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch number 10127, bottled on January 11th, just one week ago today. So, only a week old. Great.

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Great two finger egg white head. Dissipates fairly quickly and leaves some sticky lacing along the glass. Mostly clear dark yellow body that looks awesome in the glass.

This aroma is beautiful, the best IPA/DIPA aroma I've had so far. Hoppy grapefruit, tangerine, orange. The citrus and floral hops are prominent. A little sweet malt in the background.

The bitter hops dominate enough to make the flavors pop. Such a great blend of hops, it's really one of the most complex and deep hop profiles I've ever had. Add in the grassy, pine resin bitterness and you near hop perfection. The sweetness of the malt and the hint of honey in the background are the perfect complement in the flavor.

The mouthfeel is smooth, not overly carbonated. Almost TOO easy to drink for the abv. What a fantastic beer. A must have. It has risen to the top of my personal list as my favorite DIPA. I only wish it was available year round. (1,046 characters)

Photo of TriGuy20
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From 12 oz bottle poured into tulip style glass. According to Bell's website this batch was packaged on 1/3/11

A: Beautiful golden amber color with fluffy white head and a generous lace sticks to the side of the glass.

S: Wow! It does not get much better than this. Grapefruit/ Pine/ Floral/ Unfiltered honey/ orange rind/ white pepper/ alcohol

T: Everything integrates so nicely on this beer. Upfront you get some nice grapefruit blended with honey as this progresses on your palate the white pepper sneaks in and then finishes with a big hop bite that displays an orange rind flavor. As you exhale the alcohol edge of this beer comes out, but in a pleasant way.

MF: This beer feels nice and slick on the mouth with a mellow carbonation and finish that goes on forever.

D: 10% abv, who knew! This beer is pure heaven to drink.

Certainly one of the best DIPA's out there. This beer is amazing! (908 characters)

Photo of jmcgnn
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is delicious and deceptively strong. When it first hits your tongue, you feel the hoppy bite, but then when it goes down, a smoothness transforms it in such a fashion like nothing else I've ever tasted. It's a treat and highlight to the beer year when it arrives at the local stores in town. But be careful - the ease at the finish is where you can mess yourself up. With the high ABV plus the easy drink-ability, you can quickly find yourself heading off the rails if you try to down more than 2! (507 characters)

Photo of brownbeer
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled 12-30-09

Pours golden with some orangey hues and a thick, white crown and webby lacing.

Fresh, vibrant grapefruit, dank hop oils, lemongrass.

Very crisp and clean on the palate with orange, grapefruit, and lemon citrus. I imagine simcoe hops play a big role in the taste. There's a certain sweetness, possibly from the honey, that really sets it apart. Supremely balanced for the strength, not as astringent as a lot of other DIPAs making it extremely drinkable.

It's really friendly and original, making it my favorite of all time. Newman, you magnificent bastard! (578 characters)

Photo of DavidGD
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

One of my favorite beers hands down. The hops come through but don't completely over power your pallet. The honey really adds a wonderful sweetness and along with the malt rounds the beer out very nicely. If you're looking for a well balanced imperial IPA this is a great one, if you're looking to be overwhelmed by hops this isn't for you. I'd drink this any day over Heady Topper. (383 characters)

Photo of Mavajo
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had on tap.

This beer came to me sporting an orange/amber color with perfect clarity - pretty much identical to the bottle serving I'd previously enjoyed. Head seemed a bit more tenacious this time, with a bit more lacing. I give the tap appearance a clear nod over the bottle appearance.

Aroma and taste are pure joy - just like the bottle. The nose brings out the hops, citrus grapefruit, and estery with notes of grass and pine. I tried to figure out which I smelled more of (grass or pine), but it seemed like my perception vacillated with every sniff.

If the aroma seemed good, the taste will blow you away. This is, hands down, the best IPA/DIPA I've ever tasted. There's hops to be sure, but the bitterness is wonderfully balanced with a smooth sweetness. All the notes from the aroma again appear in the taste - hops, grapefruit, grass/pine. The hops are much fresher and dominant on tap, but the bitterness is still remarkably tame and balanced. Once again, I'm completely amazed that this brew weighs in at 10%.

The mouthfeel is par for the course - smooth, appropriate carbonation. Just as well crafted as the aroma and taste. It just dances around in your mouth like smooth velvet.

This brew was beer bliss when I had it for the first time from the bottle. It's even better on tap. Amazing beer. (1,313 characters)

Photo of mjord23
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A: Pours deep golden, almost a rich honey color. Hazy white head with staying power, and ample lacing sticks around for the entirety of the beer.

S: Sweet and hoppy. You know what you're going to taste when you smell this beer. I'd almost prefer it to be even stronger.

T: Wow. Huge hop flavor throughout, slightly sweet, bitter without being overpowering. Subtle honey notes bring out the complexity of the hops. It's unbelievable, getting even better as it warms slightly. So balanced, beautiful flavor. I don't know that I've had an IPA that I prefer to this.

M: Smooth and balanced. Hides the 10% ABV well, dangerously drinkable. My only note is that I'd like a hint more carbonation.

O: Stunning beer. Glad I was able to get my hands on some of this... I've now had it on tap, and I've got a few bottles. Easily one of the best I've ever had. (896 characters)

4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Wow, this is a gorgeous beer. The color is a deep, rich gold, almost approaching an amber/copper color that is reasonably cloudy. The cream-colored, three finger thick rocky pillow of head that crowns this beer is the icing on the cake; though it does eventually subside into a much more manageable one finger, the foam takes its sweet time crawling down the glass and leaves a bit of lacing in its wake. This beer also sports some alcohol legs, though they are not very obvious, which is surprising at a massive 10% ABV.

Smell: Citrus, honey, pine resin, and just a whiff of alcohol simply pours out of the mouth of the glass, taking over any and all air above or around it. It is very densely hoppy, and really quite a pleasing (and perhaps sweet) smell. At the very tail end there is just a hint of apple.

Taste: This is such a dense and complex beer; it is a real challenge for the palate, in a very, very good way. The hops are there up front and pack a punch, but it is merely a glancing blow as the honey really balances this DIPA out. After that, in a surprise for an Imperial IPA (at least in this reviewer’s experiences), the malt comes through, adding a strong caramel flavor. Finally, the honey comes back, quickly followed by a second round with the hops, which the beer ends on. There is a bit of rind in the final bout with the hops, which adds a welcome astringency and forces the mouth to water.

Mouthfeel: "Thick" is the word for this beer. It is practically syrup sliding down the drinker’s throat and leaves the sticky residue one would expect. It isn’t overly fizzy, but it is still refreshing. After only a brief appearance in the nose, and a no-show in the taste, the alcohol finally sneaks its way into the mix by giving a very pleasant warming feeling as the glass empties.

Overall: This is a personal favorite of this reviewer, and it never fails to satisfy. It really has everything a drinker looks for in this style, plus an amazing addition in the honey, which balances this into one of the most drinkable DIPAs on the market. One must be very careful drinking these because of the ease that they keep going down, and the hurting another six-pack will put on the pocketbook. 19/20 (2,231 characters)

Photo of mcslain
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours amber orange gold with a mega foam white head. Leaves behind gobs of lacing. Nose is hops, citrus fruits, maybe some honey. Mouth is light to moderate, crisp and snappy. Not nearly as hoppy as expected. This isn't a hop bomb beer, but just a really great tasting hoppy beer. So maybe the name is a little misleading? Or maybe it just means it has hops in it and you will want to slam them down one after another? Regardless, good carbonation trending to the high side. Hops are more of a subtle bitterness that linger. Taste is floral hops, citrus fruits/lemon and some honey. Not nearly as much honey as I feared though. I normally don't like 'honey beers' but this is a huge exception thanks to the subtle usage. At 10% abv I can honestly say this is the most dangerous beer I know of. I could literally drink these one after another they are so smooth. Not a noticeable alcohol taste at all. But after a few, you can feel it and you know the bottle label was telling the truth. In the very small group that I consider perfect beers. My only real complaints are it is tough to get and wicked expensive. (1,110 characters)

Photo of TheFightfan1
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I bought the last case at Bound beverage in Bensalem PA. Poured into a tulip. Pours a slightly hazy apricot with a very fluffy soapy looking white heading. Leaves a mess of lacing everywhere.

Smell to my surprise is extremely fruity.Bubblegum,pear, and nice floral aroma to kind of bind thing's together.

Taste is amazing. Again tastes of bubblegum and pear and some nice fruitiness. The only thing I got wrong was the hops. They are in full force and is light but it is like drinking hop juice. The slightest bit of biscuity malt that matches well with the sweeter side of this beer that I can only think is honey.

Mouth is medium bodied but with a little warmth on the tongue. Very bitter on the palate and a lingering but very nice lingering of hops. Super smooth green hop juice is what I think of.

Drink is excellent. I have never found a IIPA that tastes this good yet. I am not a heavy drinker but when I drank this I found myself four deep without even realizing. The 10% ABV is very well hidden and this stuff literally goes down like water. EXCELLENT !!!

Pointless addition the following year and this shit is still spot on. Absolutely amazing. (1,159 characters)

Photo of AVDeuph
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I can't believe I haven't reviewed this beer yet...

Prior to this 2010 bottle it already stands as my favorite (D)IPA, so please bear in mind the completely unabashed brew-crush I have on this beer.

A- This is a damn fine looking beer. It has one of the most inviting colors in any beer I've seen. Darker than you might expect, with lots of copper, pink, red grapefruit...it's essentially a Florida sunset.

S- I poured this bottle into a DFH snifter....a ton of grapefruit aroma with a steady and astringent alcohol backbone.

T- Where did that alcohol go? If I didn't know any better I would definitely place this beer in the 7% range. The taste of Hopslam is very encompassing....it fills your mouth with a decently sweet citrus bomb that is overbalanced (appropriately) by the actual hop slam that you knew was coming.

M- Thick and just a little syrupy. I imagine the honey has a bit to do with that. I wouldn't mind a touch more carbonation but it isn't a problem by any means. Just a little more life would be nice.

D: Ridiculously good for a 10% beer. Okay, maybe not if you don't like IPAs. But if you do, this is the cleanest, least imposing high gravity beer that I've had. If it wasn't $16 for a six-pack I could make this a session beer.

An absolute MUST for IPA fans, and fans of extremely well-made beer in general. (1,338 characters)

Photo of HuskerTornado
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
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. (606 characters)

Photo of timmy2b
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

For the Review I am drinking a 12oz bottle poured into my favorite goblet.

Pours a nice orange color that is not cloudy, but not clear. The head was small, off white and lingers for a little bit on top of the beer, but stays around the edge the whole glass.

Honey does mute the scent of citrus and hops, but still smells wonderful

Tastes of hops and a little bit of citrus. The honey holds the flavor of the citrus back, but adds to the smoothness of the beer and helps to leave almost no bitter aftertaste that can be present with some Double IPAs.

Perfect feel in the mouth, not too heavy, but not light. Great flavor at the front and perfect balance in the aftertaste.

Honestly enjoyed this more on draft a week ago, but this is still a wonderful beer and I am so happy to have access to it finally! (807 characters)

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