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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

9,774 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,774
Reviews: 3,114
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 1,855
Gots: 1,452 | FT: 42
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:
Brewed with honey. Hoppy as hell.

(Beer added by: beernbbq on 04-14-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,774 | Reviews: 3,114 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of duece27


4.05/5  rDev -9.8%

Another solid offering from Bells. I enjoy how the different liquor stores price this abv monster. Be careful an extra $6 can be ripped from your wallet for no good reason.

Light amber with clingy lace. ( it's so clear where is all the alcohol hiding)

A good nose with persistent hops. I expected a little more aggressive nose then this having recalled the memory of last years batch.

Lots of initial bitterness but with the third drink the honey punches through and sweetness starts to drag the hops under.

After one it's easy to think about another but I think that would ne a waste. Although my glass emptied surprisingly fast

01-29-2011 16:16:58 | More by duece27
Photo of mjsheehan08


4.35/5  rDev -3.1%

Two fingers of billowing head sit atop this reddish orange hops machine. It says on the bottle that this beer is brewed with honey, and that's what it looks like. Honey. Lacing is sticky and is pulled down the sides of my pint glass. Rising bubbles are medium and somewhat slow. 

Smell is strong and I can detect it before I even bring it to my nose. I definitely detect the honey as well as citrusy grapefruit. Some hop oil is present as well as floral notes. Really intoxicating stuff. 

Bitter tinge as soon as it hits my palate, but the honey radiate through with a smoothness that is again followed by bite. A little grapefruit in the aftertaste as well. It really ends with some bone dry grass. The bitter bite really comes through in the after taste, as my ears start to ring after each sip.  A really nice combination that is really well balanced and interesting at every sip. It's really hot though. I can feel it burn all the way down into my stomach. This is obviously a beer that demands attention, not just by the mouth but all the way down to the stomach.   

Carbonation is mild, there are some bubbles in the mix and they join well with the beating my palate is taking from the hops. Pretty lasting flavor after it's gone. I might not have eaten in a while, but I will be pretty buzzed after one of these. It's an easy one to drink because it's so good, but it will knock you on your ass. 

01-29-2011 08:43:59 | More by mjsheehan08
Photo of JayS2629


4.55/5  rDev +1.3%

Wow! This beer lives up to its name and accomplishes what it sets out to do...slam you with hops. However, its brewed with honey and this adds a nice sweet character that smooths out the balance and makes it very drinkable.

Not as much of a palette wrecker as it claims. Its bitterness gets balanced out with a sweet middle.

A- Transparant honey tone with a craggy white foam that recedes to an oily sea foam layer that leaves nice rings of lace.

S- Pungent pine, herbal and floral notes in front, plenty of citrus, orange peel zest, lemon, and grapefruit. Honey suckle.

T- Complex resiny hop forward, full of floral and citrus, grapefruit and a silky honey note that sits nicely in the middel. Very balanced with a good bitter aftertaste, grassy notes.

M- Slightly oily, nicely balanced, crisp and refreshing.

D- Surpringly easier to drink than I expected. I believe its a sipper for those not ready for hops, but it delivered what it said it would and therefore gets a high score. I give it extra points for the honey middle.

01-29-2011 05:39:28 | More by JayS2629
Photo of vkv822


4.53/5  rDev +0.9%

12oz bottle into snifter.

Pours fairly clear, beautiful golden orange with light rising carbonation and a craggy white head.

Aroma is of sweet, tropical fruit, with resiny pine and very nice citric, lemony, grapefruit notes.

The taste is again of tropical fruits upfront. There are also notes of resiny pine, along with a grapefruit, citric balance. I can definitely detect the honey sweetness towards the middle, though I probably would not have been able to pinpoint it as honey had I not known. Has a distinct bitter finish.

The mouthfeel is fairly medium to full-bodied with nice carbonation and leaves a faint oilyness. Very well done and really fits perfectly with the beer.

The honey really adds a nice balance to sweeten out any heavy bitterness and makes this is an very drinkable beer. I would never guess the ABV was this high.
I dont' know that I would buy multiple cases as some do, but I am very happy I traded for a sixer and could probably go for one or two more.
Thanks to jbck109 for hooking me up with this highly praised brew!

01-29-2011 04:48:43 | More by vkv822
Photo of AJacob81


4.38/5  rDev -2.4%

Batch 10,093, served in a stemmed tulip.

A - Amber-orange in hue, pours clear with a 2 finger foam head that recedes and is retained as a soapy film with little lacing.

S - Intensely fruity bouquet, smells like a canned fruit cocktail with sweet syrup. Strong supporting turn from piney, floral hops.

T - Very sweet, the honey asserts itself up front. Then the bitterness of the hops arrives in force, fresh grass and flower clippings. Finishes with sweet grapefruit.

M - Oily, medium body. The finish is dry, but understated. Exactly what I expect for the style.

D - The alcohol is well-masked at first, but becomes more noticeable near the midpoint. This isn't unpleasant at all, but it does slow the sipping considerably.

Definitely a top-flight DIPA, and another strong offering from Bell's.

01-29-2011 04:37:45 | More by AJacob81
Photo of Eriktheipaman


4.22/5  rDev -6%

Poured a gold with little white head and leaves some lacing.

The smell is sweet of apricots and other citrus. Slight pine. Pretty deep fresh smell for sure.

The taste is a sweeter ipa with citrus and the alcohol at first adds a great quality to the taste. But as its warming up the alcohol is becoming more and more present.

Over all I am impressed with this beer and after reading all the hype for a month or so Im glad it still came through!

And its almost too easy to drink for being 10%!

01-29-2011 04:10:55 | More by Eriktheipaman
Photo of goldbot

District of Columbia

4.43/5  rDev -1.3%

Golden orange in color with not much head. Some good lacing but the head dissipates really quickly. Intense citrus aroma with tons of tropical fruit; grapefruit, mango, pineapple, etc. Taste is more fruit, very citrusy. The preceived bitterness is only moderate. Not boozy at all considering the high ABV. Could pass it off as a regular IPA, other than the intense amounts of hop aroma and flavor. Still a great DIPA.

01-29-2011 03:03:44 | More by goldbot
Photo of turfy


4.13/5  rDev -8%

Got this beauty in a trade with rhodeska. Poured into a SN tulip glass, with a mostly clear, orange color with a thinnish head and light lacing. The smell was one of strong orange and pineapple with a touch of grapefruit. My first thoughts on tasting were 'sweet' and 'orange', which was followed with a nice balance of bitterness. A moderate to heavy mouthfeel, perhaps because of the sweetness. Fairly drinkable, although it may take me a few to get used to the sweeter than normal taste of most of the brews I enjoy. Definitely a Top 100 brew and glad I was able to finally enjoy it!

01-29-2011 01:55:29 | More by turfy
Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm


4.45/5  rDev -0.9%

Date: 28 January 2011
Glass: Sierra Nevada XXX snifter
Type: 12fl oz bottle

Review #100! Decided to drink a popular one. I haven't drank this beer in 3 years, and can't remember how it tasted.

Poured gently, 2-finger bubbly head, reduces to a thin film, light spider-web lacing, color is a clear light orange. Aroma is hoppy yet very sweet. I wonder if that can be attributed to the honey in the beer? The hops smell of a leathery (new-shoes-smell) citrus, favoring grapefruit, then orange, then lemon. Pine is there, but citrus comes first.

Taste is extremely smooth with a sweetness almost like mead. Taste of orange and grapefruit, ending with a bitter note on the palate. I'm not sure this beer lives up to all the hype, but for a sought after, small batch release, this is certainly worth every penny.

ADVICE: Don't let this beer warm up to more than 55 deg F.

01-29-2011 01:30:05 | More by ToAzwethinkweizm
Photo of dragonWhale

New York

4.53/5  rDev +0.9%

Drank a pint of Pliny last night. Then the beer fairy delivered a 6 pack of Hopslam. She came disguised as a dear friend who had been traveling from the East Coast.
Shabang..fruit cocktail aroma: pineapple, mango, a little peach, a little orange, bit of floral aroma as well.
Tastes of strong grapefruit, heavy citrus and big time bitterness, little bit of honey to sweeten the deal. Some pine influence as well. I love the difference in flavor and aroma of this beer. It's marvelous. Slight alcohol burn. Excellent beer.

01-29-2011 01:27:55 | More by dragonWhale
Photo of salvo


4.6/5  rDev +2.4%

This is a review of Hopslam on tap, for which I thank BlackSparrow Pub in Lafayette. Thanks for keeping us in wonderful beer, birdies. My bottle review should appear right below this one for those who wont get access to the kegs.

Pours a beautiful straw-towards-tawny yellow-brown with a foamy two inch head that slowly collapses, etching the glass. The liquid is very clear with little residue.

Wow, the aroma is amazing. Honey is very assertive at first, and then that fades and is replaced by piney, citrus, grapefruit aroma. Amazingly assertive nose.

First taste is all pine, which then dissipates, with a suggestion of peppery 10% alcohol burn, but well balanced. The finish is long, slow, and complex as it turns from hints of honey to raging citrus peel and back again to the sweet biscuit and honey where it started. Fade to pepper buzz and tea astringent, sip again. All pine, which dissipates. As it warms, more floral hints (from the honey?) and more tropical fruit are present. Almost worth putting up with ice and snow.

This year's Hopslam has a rich honey aroma with sweet biscuit malt in the nose; I've read some reports about changes to the honey they were using, and it seems most of the sugars were converted to alcohol, leaving only a fabulous flowery honey aroma that asserts itself over the rich piney and grapefruit nose. The hops are certainly there, but last year's was sweeter with hopper aroma and more honey in the mouth.

The taste is so worth waiting through bitter midwestern winters to access. The main difference in the bottled nectar is that the malts are stronger on the palate and mouthfeel is ever-so-slightly lighter, with the hops mildly subdued. Beautiful in any form.

01-29-2011 01:06:49 | More by salvo
Photo of GallowsThief


4.35/5  rDev -3.1%

Poured into my Duvel out of a 12 oz bottle.

A - Pale and golden pour with just about a one inch head that quickly recedes. Very sticky lacing all over.

S - Big piney and citrusy smell. Fruity and floral as well. Hops all over it naturally. Just a huge smell. Traces of honey.

T - I expected a huge hop taste up front but I got a nice subtle sweetness. The big hops taste follows right through though with definite grapefruit flavors. Honey provides the mentioned sweetness. Tartness in the end makes this a great beer.

M - Creamy slick layer left on the tongue. Medium bodied and medium carbonation. Leaves the mouth dry (and wanting more!).

D - ABV be damned this is scarily drinkable. Thee alcohol is expertly hidden.

01-29-2011 00:44:25 | More by GallowsThief
Photo of ottovon


4.43/5  rDev -1.3%

bought 3 days ago and poured into a snifter.

A: pours out a clear golden brown color with a white head that fell quickly but left some lacing down the glass.

S: smells wonderful. lots of citrus hops, mostly orange and pineapple, with a little grapefruit in there. i get some caramel malt as well and some sweet aromas.

T: i get caramel malt in the front with a little sweetness. then the hops come in big time. lots of citrus and pineapple. there is a little bit of spiciness in there. it ends nice and bitter with a touch of alcohol.

M: very smooth. medium-thin body with a nice bit of carbonation.

D: overall a great beer. i could drink a lot of these. the alcohol is hidden very well. very smooth. a great DIPA.

01-29-2011 00:29:57 | More by ottovon
Photo of Schreibeers

South Carolina

4.38/5  rDev -2.4%

A: Good, what I expect from a double IPA, dark golden color, some lacing down the side

S: Sweet hoppyness, some malts, and with a little alcohol backdrop, a little thin for a double IPA

T: My favorite part of Hopslam is the taste. Initial hoppy flavor followed by some rounded malty sweetness with the hops never too far away. The taste ends in a dry hoppy flavor that continues to linger long after your last sip.

M: Medium/thick body with oily mouthfeel that sticks tounge and cheeks. Very nice.

D: For a 10 % abv brew, very well balanced and drinkable. Overall a very nice brew.

01-29-2011 00:10:24 | More by Schreibeers
Photo of sturner26


4.78/5  rDev +6.5%

Served on tap at Al's of Hamden in Enola, PA in a tulip shaped glass .

A: A dark golden yellow color with a nice foamy head, about 2 fingers. Remained for most of the drink

S: Intense hop along with some sweet and citrusy notes. Very appealing!

T: Sweeter than I was expecting with a touch of citrus and strong apricot(?). Very fruity with only a strong bitter taste in the bottom quarter of the glass

M: Coats the mouth in almost a sticky way, but not syrupy. Leaves mouth dry and refreshed after each swallow.

D: Excellent. I had this with wings and pizza, and while it was not a perfect pairing, I would have sooner changed my food order than my beer. Aside from the high APV I would love to down 2-4 in a night. Great stuff!

01-28-2011 19:21:18 | More by sturner26
Photo of HURTemHIZZY


4.55/5  rDev +1.3%

Love these minikegs. Pours a slightly hazy yellow-orange. Nice almost white head with great retention. OK lacing. Smell is incredible. Tropical fruit, citrus, orange, a touch of sweetness (from the honey?). All very clean. Smells fantastic. This rivals Nelson and Citra for the best aroma I've gotten in a dipa/ipa.

Flavor is great as well. I gave a sample to a friend who isnt into craft much and he said "holy shit. There's like 9 flavors in one sip!" I'd have to agree. Starts out bursting with hop flavor. Orange, lemon, grapefruit, tropicals. Rounds into a touch of caramel followed by some honey sweetness. Leaves a mildy bitter aftertaste, but doesn't overdo it at all. A touch more carbonation could be nice, but overall this is a great beer. One of my favorites.

01-28-2011 15:08:36 | More by HURTemHIZZY
Photo of boudreaux


4.6/5  rDev +2.4%

On tap at the Alcove International Tavern in Tuscaloosa, AL. Thank God we finally have access to this brew.

A: poured a golden yellow color and brought a nice thick foamy head, about 2 fingers;

S: intense hop, with a touch of sweet (honey?); citrusy smell to it; touch of grapefruit

T: sweet with a touch of citrus; malts seamlessly appear in the flavor profile; surprisingly, little/no alcohol taste present; overall, tasted like fruit-scented winter wind; refreshing, tart, and just sweet enough to make it perfect; the honey flavors are definitely evident, if not in straight honey flavor, than in the lack of overly bitter hops; also notes of apricot

M: smooth and full-bodied; coats the mouth, but not in a malty, sticky way; coats the mouth then leaves it dry and refreshed; a clean but full beer

D: Crap. I'll end up drinking 2 more of these than I need to, and will be trying to find a ride home at 3am. This is one beer that has achieved perfect drinkability

I was skeptical about this beer's ability to live up to the hype. While it's not quite that good, it's definitely an amazing beer. I still don't understand how Bell's took major hops, heavy malts, and honey, and turned it into a crisp, full-bodied, refreshing DIPA. Perfection can't be achieved, but this is close.

01-28-2011 06:33:30 | More by boudreaux
Photo of GumbaHops

North Carolina

4.53/5  rDev +0.9%

Finally sampled this rare libation. Very good "drinking IPA". What I call a "designer IPA". Not a bad thing. Very unique, not as strong/bitter as a Symcoe IPA. It is velvety smooth and has sweetness not common in Double IPA's. Would recommend to hop heads as nothing else taste like it.

01-28-2011 05:37:27 | More by GumbaHops
Photo of wmtxbb


4.8/5  rDev +6.9%

Bottle poured into pint glass

Appearance: Crystal clear gold with a decent head that dissipates into lacing. The clarity is pretty impressive considering that it is such a thick brew.

Smell: Honey and floral hops. Some phenols are present along with a bit of malt.

Taste: Flavor comes at the palate all at once and leaves in layers. Sweet honey, malts, layers of different hops and a bitter finish. Leaves the mouth bitter and a little dry... Exceptionally balanced.

Drinkability: I'm a hop-head and I just got my fix. This is a fantastic beer; it's a shame it's seasonal (and hard to find).

01-28-2011 04:49:30 | More by wmtxbb
Photo of mattgreger


4.9/5  rDev +9.1%

Got one of the last bottles from Eulogy, in Old City, Philadelphia.

This brew poured with an amazing golden orange color. It was decently clear, but had a slight haze. It had a great big, very sudsy off white head. There was some amazing lacing left on the glass, as I consumed the brew.

The grapefruit and pine notes at the front are very present. These are the strong flavors you smell as you pour from bottle to glass. At the end of the brew, there is a great honey aroma that finishes everything off very well.

The namesake of this brew is present, right after your first sip. Its a power slam of hops in the mouth. Its a huge punch of hops up front, with a great floral and citrus hop flavor. The malt follows, with and hits as the alcohol rushes around the taste buds and gives that wonderful warming feeling. The sweet flavors of the honey, balance out the hops and give the beer an incredible complexity.

The mouthful of this brew is amazing as well. This brew is so smooth and goes down so well. For a being a beer geek, as well as a hop head at heart, I love this beer. The touch of honey and alcohol punch, make the mouthful great. It also has a great carbonation. It leaves a wonderfully dry, piney aftertaste. Its great.

I loved the drinkability of this brew. The aroma/flavor of this brew is amazing and has me fishing for more. The down fall is more then two of these brews, would put you out fast at 10.0% ABV. Other then that, its amazing. Good thing a friend is getting me a few more bottles.

01-28-2011 04:14:03 | More by mattgreger


4.63/5  rDev +3.1%

12oz bottle into Bruges tulip. Batch 10115
A: A semi-vigorous pour leaves a two finger white head. The head retention sinks into a thin, but constant layer and leaves large swaths of lacing. The body is a clear, bright orange body. The sigh of steady carbonation is present.

S: The aroma is a blend of piny, citrus blasts. A very floral aroma and one that projects and nice use of hops. A bit of fresh hops mask the aroma of any malts.

T/M: The front is a cutting bite of hops that have strong resin characters. The body opens up to a complex layer of hop flavor, I find this too be many different sweet, citrus hops, no real grapefruit or passion fruits. This is a long body, that has a piny zing on the mouthfeel. The finish is warm and pleasant and leave a waxy coat in the mouth.

D: This is an all around great IIPA, one that can be drank in session, but damn so good, best to savor. The first time I had this brew it was from a friend who had a year old one in the fridge, so good. Fresh this is an all star beer, should not be pasted up.

01-28-2011 03:52:44 | More by GDBEERMAN
Photo of mdaschaf


4.4/5  rDev -2%

Thanks to BeerThursdays for this bottle! Bottle from 1/11/11

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden orange color. Has an off white two finger head and sheets of lacing down the sides. Small carbonation bubbles are released from the bottom.

S: Lots of hops as expected. A lot of pine/woodsy aroma while the citrus plays a lesser role. I do get some grapefruit and the honey used in brewing gives it a slight sweetness.

T: Less pine on the flavor profile than expected, much heavier with citrus (grapefruit and orange) and floral flavors. The honey adds a very nice sweetness. Extremely well balanced.

M/D: Medium bodied with nice carbonation. Has a very nice finish, slightly bitter and sweet at the same time. You get a hint that it is 10%, but its not a bad thing. The drinkability at this abv is incredible. I feel like I could drink a couple of these.

01-28-2011 02:47:16 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of Dhren1979


4.58/5  rDev +2%

Vintage (2011) Actually bottled on my birthday...perhaps a late present?

Serving Type: 12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pours a golden orange..almost apple juice-like in color. About 1/8'' head on this, but lacing is very strong with this brew.

S: Sweet, grapefuit aroma. Then hints of piney, bitterness kick in at the end.

T: Massively bitter when it hits my tongue...possibliy a slight burn(?) However, not a bad burn at all! Very interesting! So creamy; which, in my opinion, is what makes this beer stand alone as one of the great hop bombs of the craft beer world!

M: Feels much bigger than anticipated. Very creamy on my tongue! Love it!

D: Damn! Damn! I was dead wrong with this beer! I didn't want to believe the hype that preceded this but the other BA's were absolutely correct. I wish I had more than a 6'er!!

01-28-2011 02:09:55 | More by Dhren1979
Photo of BBP

Ontario (Canada)

4.65/5  rDev +3.6%

A- Pours a golden orange with decent carbonation and little to no head regardless of how I pour it. Laces well though.

S- Hop-damn.. Probably one of the nicest smelling DIPA's out there. It doesn't have the piercing bitterness to the nose that some do or potency if you will, but it does have a nice crisp hop aroma. The honey is great as well. It smells balanced somehow even with the heavy load of hops.

T- For the most part, pine comes out on top from the beginning. The honey seems to come out a little after the initial hop flavor even though I found that it subsided after a little bit. There's a ton of hop flavor to be found, but the honey seems to balance it all out. It's only after about 1/3-1/2 of the bottle before the hops really seem to take hold of the aftertaste. The honey is strong enough to provide balance, but strangely it never really takes the lead or falls behind. It blends pretty seamlessly. Sadly, I think the balance made me less of a fan of it. That being said, it still tastes like a superb DIPA.

M- On the full side. It's getting to the point where it's getting heavier and syrupy. If I hadn't had many DIPA's before, I'd almost think that the honey thickened it like this, but it's fairly common for brews of this ABV. The carbonation is spot on and works well for the drink, keeping the full body balanced. It has a slightly dry, slightly sticky finish.

D- Stupidly drinkable. I can really understand how people can go through cases so fast. I've heard that some people say they can taste "heat" in this from the alcohol, and I find the thought of this as boozy to be ridiculous. Perhaps there's a consistency issue. All in all, this is one of the easiest DIPA's to drink I've come across. The balance and smoothness to it all means that it could disappear quite fast. I can understand the hype, but I don't know whether I would go for a drive just to pick this up again. All in all another solid brew from Bell's.

01-27-2011 22:55:42 | More by BBP
Photo of walteez


4.95/5  rDev +10.2%

Served to me in a tulip straight out of the cask at Patton Alley Pub in Springfield, MO on 1/20/11

A: Similar to the bottle - a nice golden orange color, fairly clear but a little hazy. There wasn't much head to speak of but it was a busy night and I think it had more to do with the pour than the beer.

S: The piney and grapefruit notes are ever present - providing all the great smell I get when pouring from a bottle. The sweetness of the honey came through a lot more both in the smell and taste out of the cask.

T: If you think Hopslam out of the bottle is amazing, never miss an opportunity to have it out of a cask. The hops are still there but the honey is spot on perfect. It's much more present from the beginning of the taste all the way to the end. The beer is just a little sweeter all the way through and I loved it.

M: It doesn't fail to disappoint in this category either. The honey lends its sweetness well. It is INCREDIBLY smooth. A normal Hopslam has just enough astringency from the alcohol and hops to leave you feeling a bit dry at the end of the taste... from the cask its smooth seas all the way through.

D: In a packed bar with people lined out the door to get a glass... I managed to snag 3 (and had a Two-Hearted on tap while waiting for the cask to get tapped, just for good measure). It was good.

01-27-2011 21:18:15 | More by walteez
Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 9,774 ratings.