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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

10,374 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,374
Reviews: 3,153
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 2,160
Gots: 1,687 | 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:
Beer added by: beernbbq on 04-14-2004

Brewed with honey. Hoppy as hell.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,374 | Reviews: 3,153 | Display Reviews Only:
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.

Photo of chickencoop
4.6/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up on a trade from SincereNC, your the man. Growing up in the mid-nineties in NorCal I always took for granted the amount of awesome beers available to me and my co-drinkers, (Bear Republic/ Sierra/ Lagunitas/ Russian River)but never really giving the rest of the country any thought about big hoppy, full bodied beers, I was so wrong. Is that bad when I pound a 10%er, because this was so perfectly balanced with the hops and the sweet finish that I was done lickety split. One of the best beers i've had in some time, thanks for screwing up my west coast bias.

Photo of Thur123
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew pours a deep and rusty orange color with about a finger and a half worth of fluffy thick white foam. The carbonation is moderate. The smell is...but hop and malt, and surprisingly balanced. There's a rich hop character that's just mixed in with this but sweet malt presence. If I say so...the whole thing smells thick, but not in a bad way...just very full flavored.

Glug glug glug

A mellow sweetness hit and is very quickly over taken by an array of hop flavors. Much more herbal than sweet IMO. There is definitely a clover honey kind of taste from both the malt (for the sweetness) and the hops (for the clover/floral flavor). Over all this is a big DIPA that I already know gets better as it warms and the hops begin to flourish more distinctly. Possibly a bit of fruitiness towards the end of the flavor. Mouth feel is full and a little heavy, but certainly not too bad.

Photo of fropones
4.9/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Figured I should toss up a review before it starts to fade.

A - Pours a nice copper, pumpkin orange with a nice 3 finger ecru head with great retention and nice lacing.

S - God, that is absolutely amazing. It smells like tropical punch, full of mangoes, papayas, pineapples, oranges, grapefruit.

T - A nice bitterness up front followed by tons of citrus flavor and nice sweetness. Smooth.

M - Nice carbonation, smooth, but a little thin, which I guess makes it more drinkable.

D - Drinks waaay too easily for a 10% beer. I wish I bought more than just that six pack, because I would like to bathe in this stuff.

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

This was a great beer while it lasted... we got a very small keg at my local bar and loved every last minute of it... I won't get into the details as there are PLENTY of other reviews... however, I will say this: for 10%, it is ridiculously drinkable...

If you like hops, this one is for you... it is a delicious and super hoppy... you will also know that you just drank something that was more than a regular beer in alcoholic percentage... however, you want another... the taste is strong of citrus and hops (of course) and I couldn't help but want more...

Get this one every chance you get... equally good in the bottle as it is on tap...

Photo of btorsdog
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

WOW!!!! What a treat! Kind of skeptical about this brew with all the hype surroundig it. Did not let me down in anyway whatsoever. Taste actually exceded what I anticipated, was expecting a "hop bomb" but this ended up being a very tasty and pleasantly smooth brew! definely and highly recommend trying this brew if you get a chance only downfall is the high dollar pricetag but do yourself and just go for it!

Photo of cooncat
4.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured at fridge temp into a std. pint glass. On a vigorous pour, you get a tangerine yellow colored brew, with a creamy firm head of decent size. Head retention is impressive for a beer of 10% abv. Small splashes of lacing decorate the glass if you give it a swirl.

Nose is a hop lover's delight. Absolutely huge in citrus and pineapple hop aromas. If you took some fresh hop cones and rubbed them in your hand and took a whiff, you'd get something like the aroma of this DIPA.

Taste follows the nose in that the hop onslaught is up front and in your face. There is a bit of malt sweetness, but just enough to balance things out. Lots of grapefruit mainly, with some tangerine and pineapple in the back ground. Mouthfeel is medium-full. I don't know if I can give a high drinkability to a 10% brew, as that would be irresponsible. However, if you just wanted to have a night of in your face hops, who am I to argue. You might be totalled after 3 of these though, so enjoy responsibly. (besides, a sixer of this will set you back about twice the price of a regular craft beer sixer)

Unlike Two Hearted, this isn't a single hop brew. Not being a fan of a straight Centennial IPA, I'm not a fan Two Hearted, but this Hopslam could be addicting .. in a good way. Looking for a good DIPA? Look no further.

Na Zdravje!

Photo of Ranbot
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

There are 1,500+ reviews about this beer so I'm going to slack a little on the details of my tasting experience, but here are the basics: It's hard to believe that a 10% Imperial IPA goes down so smoothly. The hops are mostly of the citrusy and floral variety, and they seem to pop out the most when it's cold. As it warms up the the sweetness of the pale malt body really opens up. There is easily recognizable an alcohol hotness to it that builds as the beer warms up too. As far as drinkability goes it's a bit of both worlds. When it's cold and the citrusy hops are in the forefront it down really fast, but when it warms up the alcohol becomes really apparent and I find myself sipping very slowly at it. At 10% people probably shouldn't be drinking too many Hopslams in a sitting anyway.

Overall, I have to agree with the masses that for the style this brew is excellent and I rated it as such. However, I don't feel slammed by hops as much I feel slammed by alcohol and malt. I'm sure Bells threw a lot of hops into the brew kettle for this, but I think they are still having some difficulty overcoming the very sweet malts and high alcohol content. If you're fan of high ABV beers and hops, I have no doubt that you're going to like the Hopslam. But if you like your IPAs to showcase hops, like I do, then I think there are better options out there. For my money, I think Bell's Two Hearted IPA makes a better use of hops and is a better beer, in general, but the brews are different styles, so maybe I shouldn't be making the comparison. Do yourself a favor and try the Hopslam yourself.

Photo of babaracas
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2010 - Bottled 1/5/2010 (boo FL distro). Pours a mostly clear amber, two finger offwhite head settles to a quarter inch, some lacing. Smell: sweet tropical fruit and a little citrus, resinous, very nice if not a bit straightforward. Taste: tropical fruit, herbal and a little spicy, a little citrus zest. Medium bodied, juicy, bitter, and sweet. The sweetness has a little honey aspect, though it might have been suggested... more (lots of) sugary pale than caramel/toffee. This is quite good, but I'm glad I didn't pay $20+/6er... would like to try it super fresh though.

2011 - Wow, much harder to find this year. But got here fast - 10 day old Hopslam. Nose is grapefruit rind and pineapple, resinous, pine tinged, more sweet tropical fruit in the back. Taste: grapefruit and lemon zest, tropical fruit, spicy with a slight spruce character. Sweet, but the body is lightened with the honey addition, some of which comes across at the end of the sip. Bumping drinkability (because the sweetness hasn't started to amp up yet, give it a month and it will).

Photo of moz9
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a open goblet.

This is truly an amazing beer. What can I say about it that has not already been said....

Well, the smell is absolutely divine. Mango, Citrus, melon, it smells a lot like a nice white wine. It's a great floral aroma, like no other you will find ina ny other beer.

Saying that the hops will bruise your tongue is true. It's a perfectly crisp bite. It's a very sharp hop taste that is complemented by the smell you get when you take a drink. The mouthfeel is very light and crisp.

It has a great finish and honestly, you don't feel like you're drinking a 10% ABV beer.

I think that's what sets this beer apart from any other. It's a double IPA but it drinks like a standard IPA. It's unique and I have not had any other beer that compares to it. Amazing and a must drink.

Photo of TCHopCraver
4.6/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a brilliant ruby-gold with a 1-finger head into an over-sized wine glass. Has a crisp, clean look to it. Happy carbonation bubbles running up the sides of the glass show this beer is alive! Very nice amoeba-like lacing.

S: Fresh floral and grapefruit-citrus bouquet fills the nose. There are some sweeter pineapple hints, along with a good dose of honey and just a whiff of alcohol. I could smell this beer all day long.

T: Wonderful balance between hop bitterness and the malt/honey sweetness. Very impressive for a beer this heavily hopped with a high abv. The citrus flavors are just delicious and the finish is a nice, dry hop-honey.

M: Like the label says, a tongue bruiser! But in a "I'll bruise your tongue but then French kiss the hell out of it to make it feel better" kind of way. The lovely hop and malt balance really spreads over the palate for a refreshing and complex feel.

D: For a 10%, big hopped beer, too good! So delicious and well-balanced that I could enjoy several if I didn't have self-restraint.

Photo of tykees88
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my new favorites. The abv at 10% is very deceiving, and if I drank 2 of these I would know it. The first smell is very strong of citrus. It is almost a grapefruit juice smell. Taste is awesome. Swallowing it is getting a bitter aftertaste, but as the bottle warms up the bitterness fades. This is what would make it easy to slam yourself if drinking more than 1. One of my new favorite beers. Would pair it with anything salty that I could get my hands on to offset the sweet citrus hopsy taste

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

A very nice dark copper semi-transparency with a slight off white head. Smells dank like hops, strong, citrus, and sticky. Taste is much the same with a very sweet green hops aftertaste lingering on all the smokey parts of my pallet. Nice and bitter yet not to overbearing in the sting of alcohol. A sweet IIPA. I love it.


Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 10,374 ratings.