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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

9,853 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,853
Reviews: 3,116
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 1,891
Gots: 1,482 | 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: 9,853 | Reviews: 3,116 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Pencible
4.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Just had this on cask at Rustico last night for their Glassware Giveaway event. Poured with no head, and was a hazy brushed gold color. Smelled fantastic. Ultra fresh hops, super clean, pineapple dominates, but also hints of pine and sour apple, solid honey sweetness. Taste is along the same lines as the smell. Definitely pure and clean hops, but not the exact flavor I enjoy best in a 2IPA. That's what kills this beer vs the hype for me. It's brewed excellently and tastes great, but just isn't my favorite flavor. Sweet honey malt helps balance the bitterness and makes it easier to drink, but it's still more of a sipping beer. Body was a little thick, but not as much as I was expecting from the cask. Basically no carbonation, and lasting bitterness in the aftertaste. Alcohol is nicely hidden, almost too well. Not sure if cask is worth the hype over regular tap? Overall, this was a pleasure to drink, but still not my favorite beer in the world.

Pencible, Mar 11, 2009
Photo of DefenCorps
4.85/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On cask last night at Rustico.

Cask Hopslam pours a suffuse orange with a mild haze and not much head, surprisingly so. That, though, is the only disappointing about this beer. On the nose, there's a brilliant hop character, prominent and complex with pine and tropical fruit - pineapple, orange, mango. Just brilliant. On the palate, this beer is just brilliant. All the hops come through spectacularly. Light in body with a bit of sweetness that balances the hops really well, this beer is a treat. The cask conditioning of this beer really takes it to another level with a soft and creamy mouthfeel. And the drinkability? My first pint lasted 10 minutes.

DefenCorps, Mar 11, 2009
Photo of cowens22
4.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle poured into Duvel snifter. Poured a murky golden copper color with a one finger quickly diminishing head. Smell of citrusy hops with some floral and small malt undertones that almost leaves a sweet taste on the back of your tongue. Quite possibly the best nose that I have ever experienced. For a double IPA, the mouthfeel is a little thin for my expectations. Taste of a normal double IPA, citrusy hops a thin malt body that leaves a sweet aftertaste maybe a little caramel is in there. Very drinkable beer.

This is my first experience with Hopslam and to be honest, with all of the build up and rave reviews on message boards and from word of mouth, I was underwhelmed by this one. I am not saying that this is a bad beer by no stretch of the imagination. I am just saying that I felt that it didn't live up to the hype that is hovering around this one. The aromas that this one gives off is a reason to fall in love with this beer. It is by and far the best smelling beer that I have had the privilege of experienced. There are other double/imperial IPA's that I would choose over this one despite the incredible nose that this creates.

cowens22, Mar 11, 2009
Photo of macktbone
4.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- a thicker than normal IPA. Little head.

S- Crisp blend of hops that combine well. Citrus, pineapple.

T- Grain, caramel, complicated total package. I can't figure it out but the complexity is alluring.

M- Creamy and thick...much closer to what one would expect from a much darker beer.

D- I'm done and where did it go? I will have more when I get the chance.

So busy trying to recover some points from not catching the flavors right away that I drank all my HopSlam. Damn!

macktbone, Mar 10, 2009
Photo of joerodiii
4.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Impressive...most impressive.

I am about as far from a hophead as one can get, but this is an impressive beer.

Light amber in color, this beer surprises you with its complexity. The aroma is of very fresh hops. You don't so much smell the grapefruit, citrus, and pine as you do the perfect blend of hop goodness.

As ridiculous as this sounds, this is a "balanced" DIPA. Of course, the hops dominate, but you can taste the rest of the beer as well, the base malt and a hint of caramel. You can feel the alcohol warmth but don't really taste it. Dangerous.

The freshness of the hop flavor is amazing. I can imagine what this beer is like freshly tapped. Once again, the freshness of the hops overwhelms the distinct "types" of hop flavors. The thickness of the mouthfeel continuously remind you that this is a sipper.

joerodiii, Mar 10, 2009
Photo of berserker256
4.85/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very expensive six pack of this stuff. I think it may be well worth it, however. It's a beautiful honey-golden color with a thick dark white head that sticks to the glass the whole way down. It reeks of floral hops and citrus in the best possible way. A little sweetness and alcohol in the smell as well. The taste is remarkabley smooth considering the alcohol content. Grapefruity, hoppy, pine tree, and a touch of sweetness come together to form the best IPA I've ever had. Its medium body and texture is close to perfect and it's quite easy to drink. This may be the best beer I've ever had.

berserker256, Mar 10, 2009
Photo of Packforever1976
4.9/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served slightly chilled in my 12 oz. tulip.

A: Pours a medium copper with nice clarity. A half-finger off-white head, decent retention. Very sticky lacing.

S: Man, this smells so hoppy and bright. Full of grapefruit, pine, pineapple. The aroma just bursts from the bottle when the cap is popped.

T: Very similar to the aroma, but amped up about a thousand notches. Just so juicy, and full of hoppy goodness. The flavors absolutely explode once they hit the taste buds.

M: Thick and creamy, coats the inside of mny mouth and won't let me forget how good it tastes. Carbonation is spot on.

D: Drinkable? Uh, yea. Very. 10%? Can't taste it. I'm pretty sad that this is my last one, but I know next year one case will not be enough. World class.

Hey, my 50th review! Not a bad choice for my 50th.

Packforever1976, Mar 10, 2009
Photo of JohnQVegas
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

4-22-10 (rating)

Bottle into Sam Adams sensory glass. Another thanks to Jeff (AleWatcher) for yet another hoppy treat!

Pours slightly pale golden-copper, off-white creamy head that settles into a creamy thin cap with nice lacing.

Nose is big and hugely floral, lots of pungent tropical fruit and citrus rind, noticeable boozy alcohol as well. No malt to speak of breaking through; this one feels like it held up well. About a 4.3, tone down the booze and it's solidly in the 4.5 range.

Taste follow the nose - big time floral hops, loads and loads of pungent tropical fruit with a sharp bitterness that never overwhelms, just wheelbarrow loads of hop flavor. You sense the malt body more than you actual detect it, with just a bit of light caramel sweetness peeking out towards the finish. Finish itself is long, pungent, with the same array of hop flavors lingering like shadows. Quite tasty, and much improved over my experience with last year's edition. Jeff stored this from day 1 in a refrigerator, which seems to have made a big difference - this could be a fresh release and I would never have known the difference.

Mouthfeel is inline with last year - just a bit syrupy with plenty of carbonation. Big finish, plenty of booze, very tasty. Holds up very favorably despite the syrupy-ness.

Drinkability gets reevaluated, though - even with all the booze, the flavor level on this one delivers. Delicious beer that rose and surprised me with how fresh and vibrant it was. Top notch!


Bottle into red wine glass. Thanks Uwftke26!

Pours the color of polished copper, a glowing hazy gold-orange, with foamy moderate off-white head that fades quickly.

Nose is grapefruit rinds and a big floral note, almost herbal. All hops, with a bit of sweet caramel malt behind trying to break through. A bit of piney astringency as well.

Big and bold on the tongue, carbonation may be a touch aggressive. Some caramel up front, underneath a slightly astringent big, heavy rind-like citrus bitterness. both aspects seem to grow towards the finish, the caramel getting bigger and more intense and the astringent hop note pairing with the citrus to really explode on the swallow. A bit of alcohol heat comes through as well. Finish is long, bitter.

Mouthfeel is fairly sharply carbonated, a bit syrupy.

Overall, disappointed in this one. Granted, this one isn't quite fresh - but the big flavors seemed a bit disjointed, and lacking in complexity and subtlety. The huge sweetness coupled with the piney astringency was a bit much in this one. Would have like for the massive sweetness to have been toned down just a bit.

JohnQVegas, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of lincoln44
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Like the label but the pour could have been more impressive. Color is similar to two heated ale; pale straw color yellow. Very little head with the pour but may be attributed to the temp of my refrigerator.

S- Heaven. Bell's has done a great job of balancing this beer. The hops are an obvious nose filling aroma but the malt is worthy of mention as well. Makes me smile when I know I will soon be drinking this olfactory stimulating elixir.

Taste- As worthy as the smell. This beer is balanced between pine, citrus, and floral hops. The honey addition to the fermentation leaves its own sweetness to the taste of the beer. I think the sweetness of the honey makes the bitterness even more enjoyable. The beer is initially sweet when it hits the tongue but quickly gives way to the hops and slight warmth of alcohol. Not a hot alcohol taste but ever so slightly warming on the finish.

M- Seems to be sweet and slightly thick at first but the hops and carbonation come through with an enjoyable bitterness and effervescent cleaning of the palate.

D- Exceptional drinkability for a beer of this style. I am going to enjoy my six pack while it lasts but at $16 a sixer I will not be drinking this on a regular basis, even though I would really like to. Get it, drink it, love it.

lincoln44, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of Baileyuk
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes so sorry if brief.

A - Good head although it dissapeared fairly fast. Lacing was weak at first but improved dramatically as the beer warmed a little.

S - Sweet fruity hops, maybe some summits although I have just started to pick up varieties. A slight pineness in the nose also.

T - A piney smell of the bat, developed into a sweeter finish, then back to pine. Very pleasant. An intense hop tast for sure but not as overpowering as I was expecting ((which I was happy about)

M - Heavy on the pallette, lingering taste from the hops.

D - Its 10%, but maybe good for 2. Would revisit this one especially since its once a year.

Baileyuk, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of brow1901
4.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've heard so much about this beer that I had to fork over the $18 for a six pack.

A- Yellow in color with a beautiful off white head that sticks around and leaves lacing all the way down. I was a bit upset a whole hop cone didn't come out:)

S- This beer smells so amazing, the instant I cracked the top the smell hops came pouring into my nose. Just beautiful, by far the most enjoyable smelling beer I've had. I can't smell anything besides the hops, no alcohol aroma what so ever.

T- Probably the best tasting Imp IPA I've ever had. The spring to life when they hit the tounge, and they never let go in the after taste. The honey is noticeable, and really does a great job balancing the beer, but in all the hops win that battle. I havent tried too many Imp IPA's I must say that it's not my favorite sytle but this beer is delicious.

D- It's surprisingly drinkable, the alcohol content is high and it sneaks up on you. This is a beer where one is enough for me, which is a good thing in my opinion.

Hopslam is a great beer but it makes my wallet ache. I'm more partial to regular IPA's so I'd probably only buy this once a year. I would like to try it on tap however.

brow1901, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of BellsFan
4.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hopslam has an extremely floral nose and taste. As one the best DIPAs I've had, I highly recommend it. However, at 10% ABV it's tough for me to drink more than two. Note: that this is one of Bells seasonal beers and is only available for a short time beginning in early January.

BellsFan, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a nice golden-amber with moderate head. Pretty.

S- Sweet citrusy hops. Lemons, orange, grapefruit. Smells delicious, light, crisp, clean.

T- Grapefruit, sweet, finishes with a moderate hop bitterness. Not nearly as shocking or harsh as other DIPAs I've had. Just a hint of malt in there. Very good. Hardly any alcohol.

M- Creamier than I thought it would be, still smooth and clean. Slightly prickly from the hops and alcohol--refreshing almost.

D- Couldn't drink a ton of these with the high ABV, but definitely could have more than one.

This is great. Bells puts out some good brews, that's for sure.

LordAdmNelson, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of Domingo
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to kirok1999 for this one. I've been waiting to try this for some time.
Pours a dark golden color with a big fluffy head. For a 10% brew, the lacing and head are pretty amazing.
Smells like a hop bomb...as expected. However, it's far more reminiscent of the west coast pineapple/grapefruit hops.
Taste starts off a little sweet, like more DIPAs, with all of the hops taking on the sweetness and showcasing their flavors. Lots of tropical fruits, citrus, and a little pine. As the finish kicks in, the sweetness carries through the whole time. I bet we have the honey to thank for that. It surprisingly doesn't end up as being too sweet and it really just holds everything together.
For a 10% abv beer, you'd never know it. The sweetness comes across as more of the honey flavor than a high alcohol booziness, and the texture is just great.
I polished off a bottle and could've easily had 2 or more. My wife finished hers inside 10 minutes. One of the most drinkable beers of it's strength that you'll ever encounter.

Cheers to Bell's with this one! I was pretty underwhelmed by Two Hearted, but Hopslam is amazing.

Domingo, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of ATLbeerDog
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear bright light gold with a small mostly white head. Smells only of thick citrusy hops that is reminiscent of a west coast hop bomb. First sip is all grapefruit. It is thick and strong with the flavor of Indian River grapefruit upfront and dominating. A bitter finish compliments well as the mouth puckering hop quality is so very loved.

ATLbeerDog, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of mfreire212
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Well, I am not what you would call a "hop head", so I normally pass on DIPA's, etc. I figured I would give this one a go, since it gets so much praise (despite 15 dollars a sixer at the local Total Wine in Clearwater).

As soon as you open the bottle you get smacked in the face with the hops (hence the cool picture on the bottle).

It pours a clear, golden color and produces an average white head and decent lacing.

First taste is extreme bitterness and then strangely enough, grapefruits of all things.

It fades pretty quickly and finishes pretty smooth with an impressive aftertaste/mouthfeel.

The alcohol is well hidden and much appreciated after a couple of these. I plan on grabbing another six pack for some cellaring.

Nice beer! I may have to rethink my stance on IPA's and DIPA's.

mfreire212, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of hoegaardenhero
4.03/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a: clear amber with a light white foam on top and a center column of tiny white bubbles

s: spicy hop; zesty skuny hop; sweet citrus; grapefruit; light honey;

t: more honey; skinky hop; light vinegar; a hint of abv; dry grassy hop; citrus; light dust

m: very smooth; for a pretty substantial body there is like zero cloy-perfect in body /cloy for me; just a little bit of carb-perfect

d: i think that different years of this beer must be quite different; i found this to have a bitter twinge but overall it really favred the sweeter hop flavors all though there was ample skunk and zest; definitely worth picking up at the store

hoegaardenhero, Mar 07, 2009
Photo of wesbrownyeah
4/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hopslam yes! Why not try this beer? I has everything you want in an ipa... plus more?

A- The normal medium orange that comes with all double ipas. Nice lacing that coats the glass with authority. Slight head that lasts about 1/4 of the beer.

S- Smells great. Very warm and inviting smell of hops, and grassy noles. Slight alcohol notes. Probably cascade hops.

T- Taste is very thick and malty with heavy hop bitterness at the end. Honey is well noted at the time of taste.

M- Easy to drink and if you love hops or think of youself as a hop head try this one.

Drink it! If you can find it! 10% hoppy goodness!!

wesbrownyeah, Mar 07, 2009
Photo of HopEnthusiast
4.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tried this for the first time. A 12oz bottle poured into my pint glass. It pours a darker goldish brown with a fairly small head, no bigger than 1 finger. The smell is very citrusy with a hint of pine needles. Upon the first sip, the beer is fairly bitter, and very citrusy and grassy as the smell would foreshadow. It goes down extremely well, better than I thought it would. The alcohol is there, but hidden very well for the 10% ABV. Mouthfeel is prtty bitter and acidy, in a good way. Overall, what a fantastic brew! I will definitely be back for more of these, when I have the money for them! Only wish they were cheaper!

HopEnthusiast, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of dohastmich
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Light amber color. Slightly hazy appearance. 1/2 inch head which dissolves into lace on the side of the glass.

S - Strong orange, grapefruit, pine smell. This is 10%? You wouldn't know it by smell

T - first sip was a strong grapefruit followed by orange/pine taste. There is a ton of hops in this, however, its not strong to just for the sake of being strong. I am no hophead, and this was no problem to finish unlike a lot of IPA's. Well balanced, again no sense of alcohol. Slight hop bitterness remains at the end. Can finally feel the alcohol as it goes down.

M - smooth, medium body

D - For one that is not yet fully into IPA's, this is definitely one to drink to enjoy the style.

dohastmich, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of LJArsenal
4.03/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #8912. Quite fresh - had just arrived from the distributor.

Pours a golden honey into a chalice with a one finger head. I'm surprised at how powerful the smell of grapefruit is in addition to the advertised honey. Some nice lacing at the start, but disappears through the rest of the glass.

Considering the ABV, I'm impressed by how many flavors are present. The primary taste is of grapefruit and citrus. Hints of honey as well. Some carbonation, but this one feels good on the palette - almost syrupy. Wish it wasn't so expensive.

In terms of drinkability, this is a one, maybe two, a night beer.

LJArsenal, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of Docer
4.25/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you JoBoTo for the beer trade... I am from Oregon, and can't get this stuff anywhere... so I sent off some Hop Henge and Slipknot among others for this tasty number. 12 oz. bottle. Got more than I expected, and I appreciate that.

At first, I couldn't smell much when I opened the bottle.. but after I poured it into my tumbler glass...

Nice cloudy unfiltered appearance.. mild yellow/orange almost like a hefe.. great lacing all over..

Smell is of pungent hops, a bit of bread and rye.. not so much malt... I love that.. less malt, more hop... the better. That's why I especially like rye's I guess. Does have some sweet honey scent too... they must actually use a lot of the stuff! Save the bee's!

Taste is a robust honey hop delight, a bit chewy and sweet... but perfectly blended with some fine hops that caught me off guard. I though no beer could touch what we have over here in the great pacific northwest.. but this is good. I couldn't imagine what this ale would taste like though once towards the bottom of a keg... it's right at that point. Don't know how consistent it is... but its one to treat with respect and cleanliness. Great carbonation, and not nearly as strong tasting as the Alc. stated on the bottle.

I am impressed. Thoroughly.

Docer, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of Riverwarrior
4.2/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S = Strong pine aroma.

T = Like a big pine cone dipped in sap....and then the explosion of bitterness and sweetness. The finish has malty sweetness which actually balances this one out perfectly. No alcohol detected.

MF = Medium body with moderate carbonation. Super smooth and way too easy to drink.

Overall, this is one delicious beer. I don't consider myself a "hop-head", but I do consider this one to be a winner.

Riverwarrior, Mar 06, 2009
Photo of JPA5768
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is one of the best American beers I've ever had. Hands down. I'm from Michigan (although I've never been to Bell's), and it makes me proud that beer is one thing my state does right. It stands up well to all other IPAs that I've been able to drink, including my all-time favourite, Deuchar's IPA. It's a shame this beer is only available in January and February. I personally have stocked up.

Appearance - beautiful amber colour. Exactly as an IPA should be. Not as dark as some IPAs, but it really looks like a beer that begs to be drunk immediately.

Smell - fantastic. Grapefruit, hops, a touch of honey. You have to appreciate the smell of this beer with each sip you take, or else you aren't doing it justice.

Taste - amazing for the win. I'm a bit of a hophead, but this beer makes me wonder if I should ever drink lagers again. Plain and simple. It has an extremely hoppy bite at first, but the finish is sweet in just the right way - not overpowering, but not too bitter at all, either.

Mouthfeel - creamy and smooth. When poured right, you get the perfect head and foam consistency. It should be served at optimum beer temperature, not ice cold - if you have one in your fridge, be sure to let it sit out for 20-30 minutes before pouring.

Drinkability - you will be surprised for a beer that's 10% abv. You can't even taste alcohol at all. It drinks more like a 12%, though, in terms of intoxicating effect. I swear - this beer hits you hard. Haha, but in a good way. Proceed with caution if using for a session.

Basically, if it's available, drink it and enjoy it. You won't be disappointed.

JPA5768, Mar 05, 2009
Photo of Stinkypuss
4.22/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Clear orange with a nice head and wonderful lace.
Fruity hop boquet in the nose, some sweetness pulling through.
The flavor is hops, juicy and big. Pineapple, citrus, pear, mead and malt all gather and dance on the palate. No alcohal bite until the very end. Sharp hop flavor but well done.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and semi-smooth.
Drinkability is dangerous, since this beer drinks so easily, yet is so powerful and flavorful. Reccommended if you are into alot of hop flavor.

Stinkypuss, Mar 05, 2009
Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 9,853 ratings.