Hopslam Ale | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
98
world-class
3,430 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
3,430
Ratings:
12,505
Avg:
4.44
pDev:
18.24%
 
 
Wants:
2,591
Gots:
3,325
For Trade:
67
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by beernbbq on 04-14-2004

User Reviews
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Reviews: 3,430 | Ratings: 12,505
Photo of Derek
4.43/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

'8285' packaged on January 17, 2008. 10% abv.

A: Copper-bronze with an off-white head. Very little retention, slight leg/lacing.

S: Pleasant hop aroma isn't as big as expected. Grass, nectarine, pine, toffee & hints of fruity esters.

T: Initially I really tasted the honey, but after it breathed it was only slightly noticeable in the aftertaste. I don't think there's quite as much hop flavour as their two hearted. Pine, grass, nectarine, appricot, toffee & honey. Assertive bitterness is smooth. Alcohol has a little warmth, but I wouldn't guess it was that high

M: Really well-attenuated moderate body is smooth with a little hop acidity. Exceptionally well crafted & impressive for its strength.

D: Quite drinkable for its weight.

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Photo of Murchmac
4/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Phawk for the trade.

Pouring this beer into the pint glass it just has that classic DIPA look. Holding it up to the light, yellowish highlights with that deep hue in the middle of golden honey. Like a bee's wet dream.

Smells like the hops section at the homebrew store, a little sweetness and alcohol thrown in.

Tangy hops, not so much sweet as it is bitter. I guess I was expecting more sweetness, the bittering works just fine though. Lemony citrusy grapefruits come out halfway down the pint.

Resiny aftertaste that acts better than Paris Hilton in House of Wax. Some sweetness on the tongue. But mostly resiny hops, with more hops. The alcohol creeps in almost immediately, warms you up.

If this beer were a muscle car it would be a Dodge Charger. There are a lot of other muscle cars out there, but this one is a cult classic.

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Photo of RomanW70
4.35/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to Dave for this tasty treat!! Pours deep amber gold with a minimal white head. Huge hop aroma of pine, honey, and citrus. Honey and grapefruit dominate early, sliding aggressively into a hugely lasting bitter finish. Pretty full mouthfeel. One of the biggest beers I've ever head, up there with Double Bastard.

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Photo of Slynger
4.62/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hopslam (dig the name) pours a beautiful bright golden apricot color with a tight, creamy, yellow tinted lid. The smell is tons of fruit and that's it. Gotta love it. Tangerines and oranges, pineapples and grapefruits all make a statement as they swirl together in the nose, and sweep through onto the palate. Fruits balance with the soft sweetness of animal crackers, and leave the flavor with a solid bitterness. Fantasticly full body with oily smoothness and creamy carbonation. Believe the hype. This is one awesome IIPA

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Photo of Tbn2
4.82/5  rDev +8.6%
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...

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Photo of YankChef
4.59/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into a plastic kiawah cup. Bottle says 10% ABV by the way. Thanks Brawley for hooking it up by the way!

appearance: pale in color with some hints of a strawberry or peach hue.

Aroma: Lots of fruit and juicy hop goodness, resiny and just sweet smelling. mystery fruit almost but certain hints of fresh berry and maybe some peach and mango. The honey is there along with the fruit as well which adds to the complex sweet aroma.

Taste: There is a quick sweetness that is immediately dominated by rich hop bitterness that is throughout the flavor and stings the tounge. complex and rich this is a kick ass beer and the alcohol is there but not overpowering or overwhelming as some high ABV beers can be. I believe this beer would be more bitter and less fruity if it were fresher but it is definitely still enjoyable if in a different way.

Overall: THis is one kickass beer and I do love my hops. Bottled in the fall and drank almost in June so that character has diminished but this beer is still awesome just different. Does it deserve the really high rating? thats for you to decide but if you havent had it and have the chance too I would certainly recommend that you do.

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Photo of Donnie2112
4.67/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into an oversized wine glass served in the high 40's low 50's

badass label concept, rather nice cloudy orange color, light carbonation, small head.

sweet and bready, surprising molasses and maple notes with grassy, citrussy hops. the hops definately don't dominate as they often do within this style

taste: light molasses, brown sugar, sweet grapefruit, just a bit grassy, nutty yeast in there too. this stuff is just so fucking tasty!

mouthfeel: medium-heavy body, medium light carbonation,a bit of warmth from the alcohol, not overly astringent

drinkability: very drinkabile for its abv, so tasty, finishes clean.

Seriously this is helping me rethink how I think of this style. I think of the 90 and 120 minutes and some American Barleywines when I drink of this stuff. It's that good folks. I recommend it HIGHLY!

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Photo of aubuc1
4.67/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle in to goblet. Not hazy, but not clear orangy with white head that leaves beautiful lacing. Smells of grapefruit, pine, and maybe orange. Sweet citrus taste that gets kicked by very strong hops. Perhaps my favorite beer. Pretty well masked 10% booze.

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Photo of errantnight
4.15/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks abankovich!

This beer reminded me of my Anderson Valley 20th Drinking experience in that it started off with a bang but ended up with a little bit of a whimper. Different in that the bang was bigger and brighter and better, but also the whimper was more whiny at the end. Still... I'm dying to get more of this, as freshy mcfresh as I can.

Pours a cloudy, hazy orange-tinged golden hue with two frothy fingers of head that drift away into a nicely laced, thinly filmed brew. Love that hoppy oil haze.

Aroma is a bursting hop explosion of goodness. Not the most pungent, but no strain needed to pick up layers of aroma. Blooming flowers and honey and fresh grapefruit, some sold tangerine notes, a bit of a lemony finish. Great. There's definitely malt sweetness around the edges. This may be fading.

Taste is right out of the West Coast DIPA playbook... a juicy fruity ball of citrusy, floral sweetness backed by an extremely clean pale malt middle with only mild hints of bread or toast into a clean, dry finish that lets a hoppy bitterness linger expectantly.

Not sure just how old this is, but it tasted like it had lost a step from its heyday. The hop flavors which arrive in a burst start to drift off, and as it warms, when it should really be coming into its own, it starts to develop that post-DIPA flavor which starts to remind one of an American Barleywine without the deep malt complexity or roundness.

All of which would be find if it weren't for the hot alcohol that comes through in the final third. A note is certainly acceptable, but the final few drinks find it to be a bit obnoxious. If I had started this beer out warmer I'd have been pretty disappointed.

I'm certainly open to revising this upward, but for top-of-its-class DIPA it had a couple small marks against it. This is, really, faint criticism. I loved the beer, look forward to trying more, and can't wait to do so. That said, there's a perfectness about its little brother, Two Hearted Ale, which this fails to duplicate, and perhaps I'm overharsh by the steep comparison.

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Photo of ShrLSU
4.92/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz. bottle into a tulip glass. A giant hop bud on the label is smothering some dude to death. I would gladly go out like that.

Appearance -pours a bright burnt orange color with a thin white head.

Smell -Great nose. This is maybe the best nose on a beer i have ever had. Hoppy with strong citrus notes. Somewhat of a melon flavor. Unbelievable!

Taste & Mouthfeel - Just an awesome crisp taste. Great hop flavor combined with great citrus zest taste. Very alive in the tongue. Not overpowering, but just a damn good refreshing hop beer.

Drinkability - If I could get this regularly i would have it in my fridge stacked to the nines. An awesome beer that I would kill to get my hands on another. Thanks to Tosque for this great beer trade!

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Photo of ryrust5301
4.94/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into my unibroue tulip glass. Label has a great picture of a bunch of hop buds crushing some lucky SOB to death.

Appearance - Pours a cloudy yellow gold. Not much of a head, just a thin layer of whiteness on the top to give it some character.

Smell - Big time in the nose. Citrus and more citrus! First thing that hit me was a melon smell with some grapefruit kicking in. Almost sensed some passion fruit too. Very much a spicy hopiness as well. Best nose on a beer that I can remember.

Taste & Mouthfeel - Same as the nose. A wonderful rush of sweet melon and citrusy hops. A spicy bitterness is present in the back. A crisp bite of warming alcohol comes through by the end too. Wonderfully crisp and smooth, but not overly harsh.

Drinkability - Loved the Oskar Blues Gordon. This baby just kicked it off its perch. One of the few beers that comes along and takes your breath away. Simply a marvelous creation.

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Photo of Beaver13
4.88/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle, batch 8277 (1/9/08). Pours a hazy dark gold with a huge pillowy white head that retains well and laces the glass. There's tons of big yeasties in the bottom.

The aroma is piney citrusy spicy peppery hops! Yum! It is a little subdued.

The flavor is sweet, slightly sugary, caramel malts, melon and grapefruits with a nice big fruity, peppery hop bite in the finish. It's a little on the sweet side but this bottle is not quite so fresh. I've had it fresher with a bigger hop presence. The hop bitterness comes out more as it warms. The alcohol is very well hidden. The mouthfeel is medium to full with nice velvety carbonation.

Overall, this is fantastic! It's very well balanced and is so yummy it's almost seems sessionable. I wish I could get this regularly! This is right at the top of my list.

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Photo of rudylaw
4.42/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grapefruit, grapefruit, grapefruit!

OK, so if you like grapefruit, orange, honey and citrus in general, you'll wet yourself over this beer. This goes toe to toe with Alpha King.

The drinkability is amazing. Not too thick, not too light... right on the money. There is absolutely a chance of me polishing off six of these on a hot day.

Damn shame this isn't available all year round. Special thanks to my new friends met at DLD for the two bottles thrown my way. Bell's never disappoints and this is no exception.

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Photo of a10t2
4.72/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Bright golden orange, with a slight chill haze that's nice to see. Like Bell's says, "Live life unfiltered." Thin stand of white head and a beautiful unbroken white lace remain all the way down the glass.

S: A big whiff of citrus, specifically grapefruit, from what I can only assume are Simcoe hops. Maybe a little spicy/earthy hop aroma underneath but the grapefruit is amazingly powerful.

T: Like a big glass of grapefruit juice, but in a good way. The hops are again overpowering, but the bitterness doesn't seem out of balance, so the malt must just be hiding. Some other fruit flavors (peach, mango?) come out in the aftertaste, finally followed by just a little lingering alcohol warmth.

M: Not as heavily carbonated as the Two-Hearted IPA, which is nice in the style, but still light enough to go down easily. Even at 10% ABV the alcohol doesn't detract from the experience.

D: Far too drinkable, this is a hophead's dream come true.

Note: 2008 release (batch 8278 - 9 Jan 2008), which from what I can remember is definitely different from the 2007. 10% ABV for 2008.

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Photo of kenito799
3.82/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Thanks to tizzod, midwest beer guide!

Medium amber brew, a tan head is raised and fair amount of sticky lace is left.

The aroma is a wallop of piney grapefruity hoppy deliciousness...immediately I smell Two Hearted Ale, one of my favorite brews. The flavor definitely delivers full-on hoppiness, no doubt. The flavors are excellent, bitter, floral, citrus, bitter finish, no complaints there. There is honey in this beer, and that sweetness is apparent, attempting to balance the ramped-up alcohol. The resulting mouthfeel is a bit slick and oily, which IMO detracts from the intense deliciousness of the hops. Again I am left not understanding the need for DIPAs. For me, Two Hearted delivers the same mouth puckeringly delicious hop flavors and aromas in a much more drinkable beer. No doubt as DIPAs go, this is a great one, and I am unlikely to turn one of these down if offered, but I'll take a near perfect IPA over a DIPA any day.

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Photo of jamie2dope
4.07/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bell's Hopslam, I saved this beer for the end of the night so as to savor my taste buds for the hop slamming they are about to receive. Pours a somewhat hazy orange, with not too much heading, but a good enough white lacing. Smell is everything that you would want from a good Imperial IPA: resiny hops, citrus fruits, earthy hops...its got it all. I have to say that taste wasn't quite as good. The citrus notes came through well, with lots of pineapple, mango and orange along withe the hops, but I don't know, it felt as if something essential was missing....perhaps a bit more malt balance? Mouthfeel is viscous and sweet, yet bitter. One is more than enough for me in one night, but still, I am glad I had the chance to try this brew from Bell's. Maybe not the best DIPA I have had, but certainly ranks among the better ones I have tasted recently. Cheers

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Photo of beavers
4.8/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a magnificent burnt copper with a thin but creamy white covering. Beautiful lacing. Rich nose of fresh, grassy, juicy citrusy hops on top of a subtly sweet and spicy malt backbone. Hops have faded just barely over the last couple months as the bitterness has died down a little and the sweet and spicy maltiness is playing a larger role in the finish. Medium to full bodied, and the carbonation is on point for what I look for in IIPAs. If you told me this beer was 10% I would have laughed at you. I am loving this beer a few months old just as much as I did fresh. This balance is perfect for me, and the drinkability is absurd.

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Photo of Gavage
4.47/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: dark orange in color with a 1" head. Mild lacing develops during the session.

Smell: huge bitterness and citrus tones leap from the glass into the nose.

Taste: nice malt base with a huge bitterness blanket wrapped around it. Grapefruits and oranges are throughout, oh and did I mention some strong bitterness ? Some alcohol tones are well hidden but warming. Despite the big IBUs for this beer it is well balanced.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Lightly crisp at the start and smoother and dry towards th finish. Super long aftertaste as the bitterness lingers in the mouth forever after swallowing.

Drinkability: well balanced and very drinkable. No means is this a session beer, but you can easily enjoy more than one. Definite hophead beer.

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Photo of crookedhalo
3.67/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours up a nice orangy amber color with a short-lived off-white head. Some lacing left behind, but not really noteworthy. Some very nice piney and grapefruit rind aromas going on, a slight dose of spicy V-8 type veggie showing up as well. Hard to discern any malt or alcohol characteristics even though I'm sure they're going on in there. Nice balance between maltiness and hoppiness, but I'm sensing the same veggie V-8 type of flavor remotely in the aftertaste. I must say that this ale hides it's 10% ABV pretty well with an assortment of flavors. Some pale maltiness, short crystal malt, hoppy profile, some residual sugars in the aftertaste. Pretty solid, but I think I've had better. Very astringent and hoppy, yet somewhat lacking.

Not sure if I'd sampled an outdated bottle. Dot-matrix coded 8277 on the reverse label.

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Photo of turbine2475
4.27/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a nice copper with a dense two finger head that disipated slowly leaving a good lacing.
S - Earthy hops with a touch of sweet citrus and a third hint that I'm at a loss to name. None the less very plesant.
T - Nice hop bomb, sweet citrus and earthy hops fought agianst each other as they traveled across the tounge. Sweetened honey and syrup brought forward a nice balance in such a hop infused brew.
M - Milky mouthfeel coming from the saturation of hops and a higher then normal carbonation.
D - Awesome brew that I could drink several of, but the 10% ABV makes it hard to have too many.

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Photo of shivtim
4.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours out a hazy golden color with red hints and a thin, dense white head. Nose is west coast floral hops, with dense syrupy honey. Taste is surprisingly malty, then the hops kick in and linger over dark honeycomb and bitter citrus. Slight alcohol on the end balances and mingles with the lingering hops. Mouthfeel is foamy and smooth. Good drinkability except for the ABV.

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Photo of rtratzlaff
4.82/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a orangy amber with a decent 1/2 inch head that settles and sticks some lacing to the glass.

Almost as soon as its cracked, the citrus smells are evident. Grapefruit and orange dominate. Some honey suckle in the aroma as well.

Taste is dominated by wonderful candied citrus fruit and pineapple flavors. A great tasting DIPA. Hop resins stick rather well to the tongue.

Mouthfeel is not thick, but right on.

This beer allows one to truly drink up some great hop flavor. I like the addition of the honey as well since it dries it out and isn't overly sticky sweet.

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Photo of Med
4.49/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a nice yellowish copper color with a light white head that unfortunately doesn't stick around. Lacing is fair.

S - Floral hops mingle with honey and caramel. Alcohol is present but well hidden. This is a wonderful aroma!

T - Incredibly well balanced between the citrusy hops, sweet honey, and caramel malts. My girlfriend isn't big on hops but tried to steal my glass. It's that good.

M - Medium bodied with slight carbonation. I'd like a few more bubbles here. The coating is decent though.

D - I need to buy a case of this. Tomorrow.

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Photo of stlbeerguy
4.82/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer has a great initial palate with tremendous fruitiness and gobbs of weight which is reflected in its dark yellow color. You taste the hops but do not experience any bitterness . What separates this beer from the others in this class is the finish. It is unique and very sweet almost like a very expensive dessert wine from France(Sauternes). What a luxury drink!!!! They are going to make more of this beer for the 2009 season.

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Photo of Landshark67
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Since drinking this dbl IPA, I have been on a quest to find even more. Being in Michigan has helped but my sources are drying up. IMO - This beer is exactly what a double IPA should deliver from the initial aroma thru to the lingering finish.

Luckly, I found 2 cases at a local beer store this weekend. (5/10). That should hold me over for a while.

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Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
98 out of 100 based on 3,430 ratings.