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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

10,261 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,261
Reviews: 3,132
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 2,046
Gots: 1,568 | FT: 40
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: 10,261 | Reviews: 3,132 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of billzee
4.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

To date, the best beer I have ever tasted. This was my first experience with this beer and I am already on my second case. Poured from 12 oz. bottle in to pint glass. Pours a golden with minimal white head. From the first sniff of this beer I was hooked. It seriously smells like freshly cut fruit drizzled with honey. The flavor does not disapoint. It is the perfect belend of bitter and sweet. Bitter hops, citrus, peach, honey... Moderate carbonation, very nice mouthfeel. I am hooked.

Photo of billyzoom666
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. This pours a small head with lacing that sticks to the sides like glue. It's an almost bright yellow color with sediments dancing like $2.00 Sea Monkeys. Oddly, this almost smells like a pina colada to me. It was really surprising and really unique. This is an extremely smooth beer. Unlike many IPAs, the bitterness hides underneath the sweetness. Boy, a guy could get use to drinking these. 10% ABV? These will get you in trouble fast. My first one and, in my opinion, a beer that livse up to the hype.

Photo of mdcrouser
4.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours orange-gold - a definite beacon of unique color in a world of beers that all too often look alike. A full finger of head is reduced to a thin cap of carbonation.

The smell might remind you of a glass of orange juice - so fruity, and even juicy. Seems like you could squeeze the glass and get more than just the 12 oz.

Hop bomb to the utmost, though it remains incredibly juicy, sweet, and with only a mildly trailing bitterness toward the end.

A spark of carbonation touches on the tongue, paving the way for the introduction of the hops, which then stick around for a long time, warm and lingering.

Really enjoyable in that it's completely unique and wholly consuming, moreso than almost anything else on the market - that makes it highly drinkable, but to a point given that it is so big - two beers is that point.

Photo of NYCWheatFanSC
4.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a light amber/burnt orange with a white head that fades slower than average. Lots of lacing

S - Lots of pine primarily, but some of the grapefruit and floral characters I so love.

T - HopSLAM is right, this thing beats you to death with em, but leave you asking for more! Again more pine than citrus, but tons of both. I suppose my only complaint is that its a bit boozy/hot, but I suppose thats the price you pay for 10%

M - About right for the style, perhaps a bit thick.

D - Definitely going for next year's batch!

Photo of DNICE555
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into my pint glass. A hoppy honey flavored ipa the bottle says... can't wait.

A - Clear orangey body with a nice white head.

S - Hop heaven, fruit, and honey. WOW. As a hophead - this is my wet dream.

T - Bursts of fruity hoppiness. My new second favorite IPA only slightly under the Pliny.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. The hops party in my mouth and the finish leaves me dying for another sip.

D - Well balanced hop explosion makes this 10 percent beer extremely drinkable. Alcohol is so well hidden. So glad I have a six pack of this stuff.

Photo of maximum12
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours with a nice pretty white head & clear, light orange color.

Smells fantastic. The taste is great too. Hops are everywhere, but they're toned down by a sweeter taste to it, limiting the bite & bitterness of some other hop assaults.

Great beer from a great brewery.

EDIT: I don't know whatever possessed me to give this brew an "A". Someone should have kicked my ass. After sampling, & sampling, & sampling this again & again, this might be the best IIPA on the planet. Full of aggressive hops, a smell that can be discerned immediately upon popping the top, & the touch of honey that adds that tiny bit of sweetness that keeps it from singeing your taste buds. Perfect.

Photo of hayesez
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Every year I get excited for this beer to come out - one of the best DIPAs out there for sure! Had this from a bottle numerous times and have already managed to find myself bellied up to the bar at Sonka Irish Pub multiple times this week. Sweet nectar!

Pours a light amber color with a very thin white head. Slightly cloudy but this quickly becomes nearly clear. A good looking beer!

What a nose on this guy! Definitely one of the best smelling beers around. Loads and loads of citrusy fruits. And hops - a quick whiff lets you know this thing is just loaded with them! I find myself stuffing my nose into my pint glass every single time I take a drink!

An outstanding beer. Very sweet to start off...not honey sweet, but fruit sweet. Then the hoppiness begins. A small amount of the piney hops are certainly in there along with a grapefruit / orange peel blast that really smacks you. How wonderful to have a lingering taste that is both sweet and bitter. Long after a drink has been swallowed, I'm able to dig some more sweet-bitter out of the corners of my mouth. This beer is truly a prize for hopheads. The malt is virtually non-existent as the power of the hops is obviously the focus of this brew. This is quite a mouthful too - smooth for sure, with the alcohol fairly well masked.

Overall, this is a phenomenal beer. I'll keep heading to the pub to try and get my fill before the last keg runs dry. A must-try for anyone who truly loves the hoppy beers.

Photo of tonymoore
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Everyone knows how good this beer is, so I'll add something that maybe everyone doesn't know.

Before this year's batch came out, I found a 6-pack of last year's in a local deli and bought it. I was PSYCHED, as I hadn't had it in a year and remembered it being one of the best around. Maybe it was that particular batch, but it did NOT age well.

Essentially, the honey that the beer is brewed with came through, full force, and it just tasted like a honey beer.

So the long and short of it might be, drink this one while it's fresh. Because when it's fresh, it is just too good.

Photo of jdrury245
4.8/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I finally got my hands on one of these!

a - Carmel/Copper color. Pours a delicious 2 finger off white head. Very nice light lace.

s - Extreme floral sweet smell. Smell of grapefruit/citrus. Very fresh, clean and refreshing. With a slight burn to the nostrils.

t - First sip - starts with a bitter/sweet balance and then comes back with a bitter vengeance in the back of throat. This woke my taste buds with a bite. Also has mild alcohol taste. Very refreshing and complex.

m - Has a oily/med mouth feel. It really flows and rolls around the mouth.

d - Again this is not for the weak. If you like hoppy beers this is one that you need to try. To me this is a sipping beer that needs to appreciated for it very complex taste. Of course I would love to throw back 3 or 4. : )

Photo of lbaker
4.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've been wanting to get my hands on this for quite a while now. Everyone hypes it up to be one of the greatest beers out there...so here we go.

(a)-Pretty standard. Good carmel color, perfect amount of head and lacing. (4/5)

(s)- It's called hopslam so be ready for the garden. Strong floral scent, higher alcohol content gives a lil sting to the nostrils. (4/5)

(t)- Excellent beer. The perfect beer when I'm looking for a hop fix. Extreme bitterness, but thats too be expected...right? (4/5)

(m)- Great mouthfeel. Very filling and hits every part of the palete. John Mayer would call this sexual napalm. Excellent (4.5/5)

(d)- As far as drinkability goes, im ending this beer after a 6 pick of Gumball head...needless to say right now I probably couldnt handle a few of these. At 10%ABV this shit is great, but when concerned with drinkiability you would be a rockstar to get 6 down. (4/5)

drunk, goodnight

Photo of Texasville
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

As a boy who grew up in Vermont I thought we had the best beers in America. After all we've got Shed, LT, Magic Hat, Rock Art, The Bobcat, Trout River and many more. But now that I live in Michigan and I am able to sample some of the midwestern scene I am not so sure any more. Bell's HopSlam is my latest and let me say this bevy has it all for me. High alcohol with a taste that keeps me refilling my glass. I won't bore you with the details of my experience last night but I'll just say that if all beers were as classy, consistent, and as well crafted as the HopSlam, the world would be a better place.

Photo of JoshRadTxist
4.95/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Manna from heaven drank from a clay mug.

A: Ample head (> 1 cm) subsides after a few minutes / pulls. A thin archipelago of well-sized bubbles remains through the life of the glass (20 minutes tops). Shine flashlight down the mug and it's golden, almost clear.

S: Grapefruit-tangerine, honey, pine.

T: First to mention: the sweet honey aftertaste, echoing off the everpresent hops. The hops are surprisingly subtle for a beer named, Hopslam. For me it's not as hop-centric as Sierra Nevada ( a go-to)--much more complex. Bread is in there, a heartiness, a healthiness.

M: Thick and effervescent. I think my breath is pretty good after drinking this!

D: Nectar of the gods! Belches reminiscent of the drink. Logical evolution of Two-Hearted Ale. I like it better than competitors I've tasted. Like other posters said it's hard not to drink another tonight.Think I might as well...

Photo of Duhast500
5/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My 325th review, I have wait some time to finally have a Hopslam.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a stemmed glass.

The color is a hazy orange with three fingers of white foamy head and some really nice lacing.

The smell is HOPPY, a great floral flavor is up fount and gives me visions of the first day of spring. A garden with the flowers blooming. Some nice citrus, juicy flavor in the background that makes me a bit thirsty.

The taste is serious hops, better than the smell, the taste of the hops on your tongue is bitter but well tooled to keep you interested for the next go round. Fruits come out to wash the tongue with the bitter hops and first this beer some amazing depth beyond it's namesake hops. Some apple, orange, and tease of banana comes out slightly within the hops and is wash into the storm of hops.

This feel of this beer is a pleasant medium body. It had some nice carbonation that gave this beer a bit of a zing. It is one of the best beers I have had and I really want to have this year round but I know my pleasure is only limited.

Photo of dborginis
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up on a business trip. With the high ABV, the little hotel glass worked perfectly! Pours with just about no head. Very clear copper. Could be confused for a similar amount of whiskey.

Smell is of sweet citrusy hops and metal. First sips is very welcome. I needed a hop fix and this hit the spot. Citrus hops flavor is first and strongest. Also in there is the strictly bitter hop flavor, in the aftertaste, or if you really pay attention past the citrus. Rounding it out is the sugary honey flavor. Even though there was no head, carbonation is spot on.

Drinkability: I may be getting a false sense of comfort here because I had a big dinner, but not feeling it too badly yet. Even with all this flavor, I'd like a lower ABV. A few bottles are great, but I'd rather stock up on Nugget Nectar since it has a lower ABV.

Is it better than Pliny the Younger? As far as I can remember, very similar to me.

Photo of mutterfudder
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Before I review this beer, I have to give a shoutout to hayesez. If not for his generosity, I wouldn't have had a chance to try this amazing beer. Thanks so much Erik!

Poured from a 12-oz bottle into a Stone IPA tulip.

A - Copper color with a lightly hazy body. The head pours rocky white and crawls its way down the glass.

S - Erik had said this beer was one of the best he'd smelled. He wasn't lying! Floral and piney hop notes with a touch of sweetness in the background. It really is one of the best smelling beers I've experienced. The smell died down in intensity as the head dissipated.

T - The wonderful flavor mimics the nose. The biggest surprise is how there is quite a malty flavor that goes on with the hop and honey notes. The malts dance nice with the pine notes and a mellow honey sweetness that ties back to the malts.

M / D - The mouthfeel is sharp and coating. The beer is incredibly drinkable, and I was sad that I only had one bottle to drink.

Hopslam is a serious contender to some of the big-name IPA/DIPA's out there. It shows incredible balance and has an interesting chameleon flavor profile that can highlight any key flavor of the beer on a given sip. Very tasty.

Photo of marvin213
4.47/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A darker tint of straw-colored, the head forms decently enough. Lacing along the glass sides indicates a hop presence. ;^) Though this isn't my inaugural Hopslam experience, I must acknowledge the beverage looks ordinary enough....

Whoa! With the aroma, the beer begins to become distinguished. The nose is bittersweet honey-hop happiness. Though it smells so hoppily bitter, the honey has appeal like the Winnie the Pooh. The vapor smells strong enough to dissuade some novices, but I detect a craft beer lover's dream!

As the label suggests, it's what you'd expect from a brew dubbed Hopslam. It's bitter, biting badassness. I'd like to drink this straight from the vessel because--like most hop bombs--it'll deteriorate quickly with age. Not only will the hops fade, but the leftover maltiness will neutralize honey influence. It's not a complicated beverage, and perhaps that's what makes it so special. A real hop bomb with a near-perfect complement. It's an outstanding concoction.

The potency and biting bitters seem to force a mouthhold. I've seen the YouTube fools chug a 120, but I think the Hopslam might prove even more challenging. I know they're out there (I have yet to search), but this is a brew meant to sip and to savor. It tingles bittersweetness, and it's a shame that it's affect is absent (even if you keep the bottles) by March.

Aside from the 10%, the oh-so-brief availability most hampers drinkability. Brilliant marketing and economics perhaps (and maybe it relates to the natural hop-growth process), but why is this beer available only in January? Great to start the year, certainly, but what about spring sippers? Summer sloshers? Autumn audibles? Winter...well, we should simply enjoy why we have it--great beer!

Photo of Mora2000
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to exiled for sharing this bottle.

Pours golden with a large white head. The aroma is fruity, with peaches, mango and oranges. The flavor is fruity as well, with the above fruits as well as grapefruit and some pine. A very complex flavor. Medium bitterness, medium mouthfeel and low carbonation.

Photo of saintwarrick
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Perfect golden orange brew with a frothy white head that is not quite as prominent (or needed) as some other DIPAs. Aroma is reserved but nice, lots of citrus, tangerine and hop oils. Taste is smooth, unreasonable smooth, no overwhelming alcohol burn or lip-puckering bitterness. This is a very smooth, hoppy beer, almost like a regular IPA, which is good as a lot of IPAs are far too overwhelming. This is a well-crafted brew. Lots or citrus, grapefruit mixing with a leafy hoppiness and honey to produce a very good beer. Finishes with a reserved but fresh bitterness to end the brew perfectly. A rare brew that lives up to the billing.

Photo of RedBrewer83
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aggressively poured into tulip...

A: Pours a golden yellow orange hue with a huge four finger creamy off-white head that falls slowly in pockets leaving thick sticky webbed lacing. Fantastic appearance!

S: Huge aroma of citrus, tangerine, orange peel, lots of simcoe hops! Reminiscent of Pliny...with a little added fruit and a hint of sweetness. Expected it to be just a little bit bigger...

T: That is soooo good! Full of citrus, orange, tangerine, faint lemon, slightly sweet with a nice malt profile, a hint of honey, very floral and a little grassy on the finish. Very nice and complex...

M: Medium light body, excellent carbonation that tickles the tastebuds.

D: Can't believe this is 10%, so smooth and incredibly drinkable! Love that I have 5 more of these in the fridge right now!

Photo of tapman
4.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A dark, clear orange, the medium-sized bubble head looks inviting, yet reminds me to pick one up for aging since I believe to have heard that as yeast continue their process the bubbles may get finer. Looks good for the style. The complete opposite of the last beer I reviewed.

Citrus, pine, earth, grass (not like shitty crab grass, the good stuff!), with a little sweet toasty in the way back. No yeast character. Very clean smelling.

Fruit (apricot, pineapple), tart, resinous pine. A smidge of something like Victory or something very low kilned, yet toastier than pale or two-row. A warm alcohol devoid of astringent, solvent-like harshness, which I believe the honey adjunct to be responsible for. Pine in the finish and while a little sticky, fine for the example. Big, bold, and balanced.<----alliteration, check it!

Light and puckering, deceivingly refreshing and questionably quaffable.<--- #2, that's what you call killing

Extremely drinkable, yet so high in alcohol. How much is a pliny, again? Could this one come down in alcohol a little, or have something related yet easier on the liver? Then again, I've never had it aged, so I might have to change my tune. My one real qualm is that I wish I could drink more before passing out. It's not fair.

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.8/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bell's Hopslam purchased at Boo's in Columbus Ga.
Poured into a Spiegelau Tulip.
appearance - Hazy orange. Big head on the pour that recedes.
smell - Hopslam! Tropical fruit.
taste - this bad boy is a work of art. Amazing. Hopslam yeah, but it recedes, replaced with an unexpected creamy follow.
Wow, this goes down easy. How in the hell did they make this thing so drinkable.

Photo of ScarletLady
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Since we can't get this in MD a friend was kind enough to share a bottle he aquired. Poured into 4oz tasting glasses.

A - lighter in color than expected. looked blonde to me and clear. white head with good lacing for the small glass i was drinking it from

S - Simcoe hops, citrus and honey. sweet but not from the alcohol

T - slightly sweet with a tingle of hops all along the tongue. really good. All hops but still nicely balanced. A hint of a bitter finish.

M - medium +, carb was perfect

D - nicely balanced for a beer with such a high ABV. You never taste the alcohol. really good. enough to send me into DC in search of it

Photo of hansgruber
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Batch 9470 poured into Bells pint glass..

Off white one finger head with a golden orange color. Spotty lacing and very clear with some surface foam and a nice collar of carbonation.
The nose is all tropical fruits with a touch of the alcohol and malt making itself known.
Tastes like the nose with the tropical hops just blasting your tongue. As I drink the hops later show some dank/piney/earthy flavors as well. Very nice flavor. There's some mild bitterness in there too with the malt presence really hitting you for a second on the finish and then just fades out with everything else. Its got a touch of sweetness as well.
The carbonation seemed a tad low perhaps on this bottle. Other bottles were fine. Nice and full bodied. The drinkability is great and I could easily knock down a couple. Very smooth and memorable.
Definitely best fresh and well deserving of its status of a top-tier DIPA.

Photo of papat444
4.1/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

*** Batch 9470 (packaged December 23, 2009)***

Huge thanks to jzeilinger for giving me this brew for nothing but a picture! Shared last night with my wife.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle.

Appearance: Bright orange body, slightly hazy with a thick and fluffy head that won't let up. The lacing left behind on the glass is thick and gorgeous.

Smell: Tangerine, melon, pine and juicy hops. Very fresh smelling. Smells delicious.

Taste: Tastes like it smells. More melon than citrus with a touch of sweetness. The piney hops are felt more in the finish and aftertaste. I was expecting a more aggressive hops presence but found it to be quite reserved. The main flavor is the fresh and ripe fruit.

Mouthfeel: Incredibly well-balanced and very smooth. Palate pleasing for sure.

Drinkabilty: This is 10%? No heat whatsoever in the taste. Drinks remarkably well and could have easily had the whole bottle to myself :)

Overall: I must admit to being a little let down as i had it pegged as more of a hop monster (the name kind of leads you along that way) but it is a very tasty DIPA and worth seeking out. This is one to get fresh for sure.

Photo of ricke
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rather murky orange color with a medium-sized head that leaves some lacings. The color of the beer is surprisingly reminiscent of exotic fruit juice...

...and so is the smell. This is almost ridiculous, so much hops and exotic fruit aromas. Grapefruit, mango, passion fruit, you name it. Some notes of pine-needles and a honey-like smoothness that seems to blend everything together and round everything off to a fantastic hoppy juicy whole. This is one of the most impressive aromas I've ever come across in a beer.

And the flavor is no disappointment either. I could easily describe this simply as hop juice. Grapefruit, mango, passion fruit, all kinds of exotic fruits come together in a beautiful combination that is really reminiscent of tropical fruit juice or nectar. The sweet and fresh malty backbone that isn't as "caramelly" as most malt profiles in Double IPAs are, really adds to this. Perhaps a note of nettles and tobacco. The finish is smooth with a prominent bitterness (again, much more restrained than most Double IPAs), pine-needle hops, grass and more juicy hops.

It's rather full-bodied and very smooth for the style, but still dry enough in the finish. This one drinks dangerously easy.

This is one of the coolest beers I've had the pleasure to drink. Can't think of anything that taste like it. I mean, it's actually hop juice.

Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
100 out of 100 based on 10,261 ratings.