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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

10,163 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,163
Reviews: 3,131
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 1,996
Gots: 1,550 | FT: 37
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: 10,163 | Reviews: 3,131 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BamaBeerBuff
4.8/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: HopSlam pours a slightly hazy tangerine-copper with a creamy ecru-colored head that sticks around a while, retains well, and leaves some nice lacing on the glass. Good appearance for a DIPA, but not a world-beater.

S: The aroma, however, is pretty awesome. The honey is detectable as a background element, but the main attractions are the juicy citrus and tropical fruit aromas that explode out of my glass.

T&M: Tons of tropical fruit, citrus, and slightly piney hop flavors here. Absolutely explosive flavor, even now in June. A delicate sweetness from the honey is what really masks the alcohol to me. The maltiness is lightly sweet and cookie-like, though it serves as a light background for the insane hop flavor. The finish is long, drying, and makes me salivate for more. Body is medium to full with a silky feel that's not syrupy or overly resinous and sticky. Very smooth feel.

D: By far the most drinkable DIPA I've had. In fact, this would be quaffable for a standard IPA. Despite its 10% ABV, this beer goes down incredibly easily. Hopslam satisfies hopheads, but will also likely convert many "non-believers" to the incredible potential of highly hopped beers.

Many thanks to mikereaser for allowing me to enjoy this incredible beer.

BamaBeerBuff, Jun 22, 2009
Photo of moosiz
3.73/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured into a tulip glass this beer is a glowing tan orange color. not much head here. with a swirl of the glass tiny shimmering bubbles cling to the sides of the glass. good slippery lacing.

smells of grapefruit, and a little piney.

citrus and pine really comes through. nice bitter bite with some sweetness blended in. not much sweetness but a little bit. hop bite doesnt linger too long.

awesome mouthfeel as this is a very thin version of a iipa and i dont mean thin in a bad way. it just adds to the drinkability of this beer. I have to admit im getting to the party a few months late so all these scores could change dramatically with a fresh batch this year. i cant wait.

moosiz, Jun 17, 2009
Photo of GruvisHops
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: 12 oz. brown bottle. Slightly hazy orange body with 1/2" of ivory head. Pretty nice lace patterns are left behind as the head fades.

S: To be expected with a name like Hopslam, the nose is comprised of hops, hops, and more hops. Orange and grapefruit are what primarily stick out.

T: It's certainly not as dominatingly bitter as I expected, but the flavor is still very nice! The malt backbone is very hidden, which is fine by me. My tongue is being assaulted with loads of citrus flavors.

M: Medium. For such a high ABV beer, it's not as full and sticky in the mouth as I expected, either.

D: The lack of a sticky aftertaste allows it to go down quickly.

GruvisHops, Jun 16, 2009
Photo of happygnome
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a hazy orange color with about a half inch of head that dissapears slowly leaving only a hint of lacing

s: sweet citrusy/grapefruity hop bitterness there is also a very present piny bitter aroma

t: starts of with a sweet caramel flavor but quickly overtaken in a pleasant way by the hop bitterness. Piny, citrusy, grapefruity all of those distinct hop bitternesses can be detected

m: medium bodied beer with good carbonation

overall, this is an amazing brew i loved it, not something to have a lot of at a time though

happygnome, Jun 15, 2009
Photo of tgdigital
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer really blew me away. For a 10% beer it is exceptionally drinkable (to the point of getting yourself in trouble very easily).

Pours a nice light amber color with a fluffy white head and nice lacing. The nose is sharp citrus with a sweet smell (probably from the addition of honey). The taste is fantastic with loads of grapefruit up front finished with a slightly sweet honey flavor. Mouthfeel is nice without too much carbonation, seems just right for the style.

tgdigital, Jun 11, 2009
Photo of NewGeneric
4.38/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this with a friend earlier tonight and very much enjoyed it. Poured a nice golden color with medium-thick head that left plenty of lacing. Smelled wonderfully of citrusy hops. Taste was a little less hoppy than the smell. Very smooth and masked the 10% alcohol extremely well. I could easily have drunk 3 or 4 without realizing how buzzed I was getting.

NewGeneric, Jun 10, 2009
Photo of KBoudreau66
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received a 6 pack plus 2 via trade with Kiefdog(an excellent trader I may add).

Poured into a snifter. Has a beautiful looking dark orange color with a golden tint. About one finger of slightly off white head that dissipates into a thin layer that will last throughout. This brew left an impressive looking thin layer of soapy lacing down the entire glass.

The nose consists of piney, citrus hops up front with an enticing sweet honey aroma that compliments the hops. There are hints of bready malts in the undertone. Alcohol phenols will be present, but well hidden for a big DIPA with a strong 10% ABV.

Wow... That's the first thought that came to my mind as this beer hit my tongue. It has the strong hop profile that I expect from a DIPA; however, this brew manages to avoid an overpowering bitterness and replace that somewhat mundane taste with an admirable sweet honey, and bready malt flavor.

The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth yet has a light carbonation that creates an excellent feel on the pallet.

I know that it is controversial to rate a DIPA, or any IPA for that matter that may or may not have a hop profile that has been deemed "faded". Some BA's have argued that it would be unfair to rate a DIPA/IPA that is considered faded. However, I personally feel that this should only hold true for beers that could be rated unfairly based on that fact alone. Although Hopslam may be considered faded at this point, I still saw past that and thoroughly enjoyed it. IMO this brew still had a strong hop profile, albeit, faded, and although other BA's may disagree with this, I still feel that a potentially "faded" Hopslam was still one of the best DIPA's I have managed to get my hands on, and would like to get my hands on again ASAP(doesn't distribute to Massachusetts).

KBoudreau66, Jun 06, 2009
Photo of JoeMayo
3.58/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours golden/orange with a heavy off-white head.

S- Very piney with a slight alcohol presence. There's a sweet honey aroma as well with very slight hints of citrus.

T- Sweet with honey. Bitter, piney hops. Slight hints of citrus, namely grapefruit. Balance could definately be better. I feel like the honey and the bitter hops are competing, rather than balancing one another.

M- Medium body, but much bigger than a typical IPA.

D- The alcohol isn't all that noticeable in the taste or mouthfeel.

JoeMayo, Jun 04, 2009
Photo of stephens101
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A tight and rolling large tan head sits neatly atop a hazy orange and amber brew. A sticky, curvy lace is revealed as the froth slowly drifts away, leaving a thick covering atop. Subdued and pleasant citrusy hops float to the nose. Tastes fruity, citrusy and malty upfront with the hops coming at the end, adding to, and not overpowering the palate. Spice and pine exist, as does some butterscotch or other such candy. The honey comes in and adds a nice texture to the whole experience. Equanimity is achieved across the board. The alcohol heat bites at the throat just a bit, but is welcomed, not at all bothersome, but demands care. The mouth-feel is a perfect medium, as it doesn't weigh you down; demands sipping, but also has a certain hint of fluff that allows you stay in for the long haul. This is an exceptional, highly approachable and satisfying beer that reminds me of bittersweet candy, candy which I would not hesitate to steal from a child.

stephens101, Jun 02, 2009
Photo of Jmoore50
4.68/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So I got this gem from a buddy who got it in a trade. Saying that much, it makes the bottle somewhat old. It was in the 8911 batch which was bottled on January 20 2009. This will make a difference to my reviewing, I am sure.

The appearance is amazing. The beautiful golden amber color is stunning to look at. It pours smooth, and surprisingly enough it is somewhat translucent for being ten percent. It pours with a great two finger sticky white head that just sticks around. When you drink the brew the head just clings to all parts of the glass, just holding on for dear life.

The smell is great. Has a great honey smell that resonates with the nostrils. Has a great hop character that also brings out a citrus smell that is stunning.

The taste is awesome. The thing about this review is that I taste the amazing-ness that is this brew, but I also can taste the potential for a perfect brew. I wish I had a fresh one, maybe next year. Really amazing though, the citrus hops gives such a great mouthfeel, its unreal.

When drinking this brew, just count your blessings. This thing makes me believe in brewery perfection. The mouthfeel is awesome, just outstanding. The palate is hit with the hops bitterness but its smoothed out by the honey taste. Just overall mind blowing. I could drink this until I exploded. There is a reason it has gotten such high reviews and so much press. Lovely, absolutely lovely.

Jmoore50, Jun 02, 2009
Photo of WPRebelFan
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #8907 poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Poured light amber with a white fluffy head. A good deal of lacing included.

Smell: Strong citrus and grapefruit notes with a bit of floral.

Taste: Grapefruit is obvious here, along with a ton of hops! And with just the right amount of honey to balance it all out.

Mouthfeel: Light carbonation with a crisp, clean finish.

Drinkability: Very drinkable and horribly refreshing.

WPRebelFan, May 31, 2009
Photo of Metalmonk
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to BDLbrewster for hooking me up with a couple bottles of this. A fairly elusive beer for me, as the timing has never been right for me to score it. Thanks dude!

Looks the quintessential double IPA: hazed sunset/copper/gold, not as much rust tint as some others in the style. Creamy head begins big and fluffy, and leaves a lot of lace as it thins out. Head never totally disappears.

Aroma is fantastic, a perfect mingling of sticky pine elements and fresh citrus. Big orange burst meets the smell of a pine forest after a fresh rain. A mere hint of alcohol, at best, and that signals good things for the flavor (ie. not too boozy, I hope...)

Sure enough, the 10% alcohol is incredibly well incorporated in the flavor, giving only a slightly medicinal edge to a flavor that is top-notch in its style category. Taste favors fresh orange slices, grapefruit peel, pine resin, orange-blossom honey, fresh-cut grass. Mild saltiness in the finish, which keeps the citrus riding high. Bitterness comes with depth and spreads out over a variety of levels and taste impressions. Malt offers the perfect balance, not too much or too little, lightly toasted vibe, laying out a clean earthy/sweet base for the hops to do their thing.

As with every other aspect of Hopslam, its texture is just about perfect. Round and creamy, yet with just enough bite from the bubbles. Not quite heavy in body, having some buoyancy in the medium-bodied area of the spectrum. But also somehow pretty syrupy, which is partly the big flavor itself giving the impression of big weight.

Love the label, which pretty much says it all, although this isn't one of those hop-drenched experiences that wipes out the tastebuds for a whole day (hi Hopsickle!). You'll get up from getting slammed by mutant hops only wanting more. Go ahead, indulge. Drinkable? From where I'm sitting, oh hell yeah.

Metalmonk, May 30, 2009
Photo of DavoleBomb
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a snifter.

3.5 A: Opaque darkish orange color. One finger of creamy head has surprisingly bad retention but leaves lots of lacing. Must be the 10% ABV, though plenty of other big IPAs have pulled it off.

5.0 S: Big burst of citrus hops. Grapefruit, pineapple, and orange. There's a good pungency to it that I just can't get enough of.

5.0 T: Tons of fruity and piney hop flavor. The perceived sweetness in the fruitiness is thankfully balanced out with a strong bitter backbone to make this one hell of a sipper. The alcohol is essentially non-existent. The malts play a supporting role and do their job without demanding too much credit.

4.0 M: Medium body. Good carbonation, which is a bit surprising considering the lack of head (or perhaps the lack of head is why there is good carbonation). Bitter and sweet finish and aftertaste. I prefer a shitload of hops AND a good creamy body for a DIPA, but the creamy body is not to be found.

5.0 D: I am so glad I finally got to try this beer. It is absolutely delicious.

DavoleBomb, May 26, 2009
Photo of Westsidebuddha
4.08/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #8907, January 6, 2009. 12 oz. bottle.

Smell is slighty hoppy with a slight smell of honey. The color is light golden with a significant head. The taste is a nice hoppy feeling, not overwhelming. Mouthfeel is a good taste with the 10% abv not being strong to overtake the taste. The drinkability is good enough that I can drink a few more Hopslams now. Nice.
Overall, a good beer to enjoy.

Westsidebuddha, May 25, 2009
Photo of CMitchell
3.55/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Pilsner Glass. Typed in batch # on Bell's website and found it was was packaged on January 6, 2009. (I did this after tasting the beer).

A: Golden, orange and slightly hazy, nice white head that disappeared after a few minutes (and sips)

S: Nice and hoppy, not quite the punch of hops I was expecting. Slight pine and citrus, with some flower notes.

T&M: Slightly malty, some honey notes, sticky with hops, but again does not live up to the name Hopslam.

D: I would try this again, but only if I knew it was fresh. Was disappointed and slightly pissed that this beer is 5 plus months old.

If you're going to take the time to stamp the bottle with a number, might as well stamp the freaking date. . .or is this just a ploy to hide the freshness of the beer to sell more. . . .

CMitchell, May 24, 2009
Photo of MithosYggdrasil
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've been told that this beer is very susceptible to going bad if it sits on the shelf at the liquor store for too long. Thankfully, I was able to get a fresh 12oz bottle and thoroughly enjoy it. It's a shame I bought but a single 12oz bottle of it!

Appearance: Upon being completely poured, I noted a foggy golden orange color as well as a thin head resembling flour.

Smell: Notable hop presence, pineapple, pine, honey and caramel all reside in the smell.

Taste: Bitter and hoppy with the flavor matching up to the aroma. This is an Imperial IPA, alright!

Mouthfeel: Thick, great hoppiness that slams you right frm the get go and somewhat heavy. Moderate carbonation, and the alcohol is hidden quite well.

Drinkability: It's incredible tasting and I'm sure if you're a hophead, you'll love it. Not a session beer by any stretch of the imagination, but a darn good drink.

MithosYggdrasil, May 24, 2009
Photo of thryn
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I love HopSlam. I love it fresh, and I love it now, nearly five months later. Bottled Jan. 5, 2009.

It's a golden honey-amber color, slightly cloudy, with a finger of eggshell-colored head that drops to a thin but resilient layer of foam atop the brew. Sticky lace throughout.

Nose is all citrusy and piney hops, with some malt and honey sweetness to back it up.

It's definitely mellower than it was fresh, and I'm giving it a five because I know how killer it is fresh. Even, now, it's a 4.5 easy. The pine and citrus notes of the hops cut through, the honey makes an appearance, and then it finishes nicely bitter. Alcohol is not very forward at all.

A solidly medium body -- not too heavy and decent carbonation makes it refreshing in warmer weather.

I bought a case this year, if that tells you anything about drinkability. The only reason there is any left is that I was saving some for when my friend vsited last week ... and then I bought another sixer.

thryn, May 22, 2009
Photo of semihobo
4.13/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From batch 8911, bottled in January 09. Already had the first four from the pack.

Pours with a solid ginger-peach head, beautifully minute creamy bubbles, vigorous bubbling. Great lacing.

Smell is wonderful, grapefruit candy and flowers, a fresh spring rain, with a bit of pine resin. It's all there.

Very balanced taste. You have the delicate flavor of hops vs. a moderately (for the style) bitter finish, the bitterness swallowing up the alcohol, and an adequate malt presence that starts sweet before heading off to biscuit land. Nice pine, resin, and citrus. Not overboard on the bitterness or resin. Smooth out of the fridge, less so as it warmed. After having a few of these, I feel comfortable saying this: drink this one a little colder than you would think is appropriate... you'll be rewarded.

Creamy mouthfeel, gentle carbonation. Finish is a little too sticky and prolonged.

Lived up to most of the hype -- this is tasty. Have felt differently as I've worked my way through the six pack, from time to time, but very nuanced and quite drinkable. As regards the debate about drinking Hopslam as fresh as possible... I can't say anything about 2 days vs. 2 months but 2 months vs. 4 months did not show any deterioration. $17.99 for a 6 pack after shopping around though... that is a lot of money.

semihobo, May 22, 2009
Photo of bmwats
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter.

A: Amber in color. Half finger bubbly white dead. Quickly settles leaving a smattering of bubbles. Some lacing, but quickly retreats into the brew.

S: Hops. A subtle malt, a little citrus hint, and a touch of honey.

T: Syrupy sweet hops and some freshly baked bread.

M: Hops assault the tastebuds. Feels thick and heavy. Sharp and robust. Hops linger.

D: Great for a slow sipping beer.

Solid atmosphere. Nice appearance and sharp, profound nose. Flavor is not complex, but is 'full'. . . the subtle sweetness adds a bit, though. Great quaff.

bmwats, May 21, 2009
Photo of Birdiebeagle
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle Pours a clear golden with an off white head. The head is frothy and lasts well. Fairly good lacing. Has a good hoppy aroma of pine, oranges, and a touch of vanilla. Has a good carbonation and a wonderful mouthfeel. The flavor is excellent. The alcohol is well hidden. Very well blended. Has a soft bitterness. It is bitter but the bite is mellow. Has an oily texture. A medium body mostly because it's so refined. A good finish with a good lingering aftertaste. This is a real good beer. Very smooth.

Birdiebeagle, May 21, 2009
Photo of beerindex
2.68/5  rDev -40.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Pours a hazy orange-brown color (almost cider-like) with a modest and quickly fleeting white head that left a respectable lace behind. Smell though was this beer's best selling point. The aroma was heavenly, perhaps the best I've come across of any beer. The smell was of citrus fruits, mostly lemon and pineapple, with a bit of honey too.

With respect to the beer's taste, it wasn't anything to write home about. I picked up a bottle because it is cheap and local, and most people seem to love it. As much of a hops fan as I am, this simply didn't do anything for me. I couldn't detect the honey it was supposedly brewed with. Instead, it had an odd medicinal sort of taste that was bitter in a way I don't expect with this style.

Not something I'd care to drink again, especially when Bell's has much better beers in their line-up, and even better locals brews exist (see: most stuff from Founders).

beerindex, May 20, 2009
Photo of jas30060
4.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Just had this at the Taco mac in Kennesaw Ga.

Bells had there release party for Georgia there.

This was my first bells beer.I was impressed.
Everyone else reviews pretty much summed this beer up so I wont get into all the mouth feel stuff. so all im gonna say it that this beer it Great!

jas30060, May 20, 2009
Photo of PerzentRizen
4.85/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel glass around 48 degrees this beer is copper to dark straw in color. The head is white and frothy and the lacing resides for the entire session. This is around the 27th Hopslam I've had - but never reveiwed it until now. I know the hops have faded from when I first had it and I know the progression that this beer takes over a three month period.

The aroma is an amazing bouquet of floral hops, intense honey-like malt, and a grapefruit citrus smell that begs for a sip. Amazing!!!

The flavor is intense. There is an overwhelming of the senses as the hops kick your tongue's ass. The malt backs it up by balancing the flavors nicely. The alcohol is there but makes a small appearance compared to the rest of the flavors. Hops come back to recede to malt sweetness - probably impacted by the honey.

The mouthfeel is full and viscous. It's a bit more than I was expecting but great non-the-less. I love a nice round feel from my double IPA's and this one does not dissapoint.

Some beers at 10% with this much flavor would push you away rather than suck you in but I've had almost 30 of these and I'm ready for more! If I could have any beer in unlimited supply it would be this one! I love Bell's Hopslam!!!

PerzentRizen, May 20, 2009
Photo of bhalter8
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am reviewing the second pint I had off a cask @ BSP, yummy. The first pint was a little faint in al regards, and the second was far better. Nice vibrant orange color, a bit richer and deeper than the first pour. Little carbonation, its a cask. Lovely floral and citrus hop aroma. This second pint was far better in the hop flavor department. I get a much more pronounced bitterness, but I think the honey sweetness helps balance it out. Also make is incredible easy to drink. Too easy really. I think the middle of this cask was amazing, but also a testament to how cask settle, there is definitely a sweet spot. Off cask, it really opens up the flavor and aroma.

bhalter8, May 19, 2009
Photo of RustyDiamond
4.85/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bright orangey apple juice pour at BSP on the Bell's Launch Day. Typical cask-like flatness with just some glistening white bubble film on the flat head. Very nice brightness, though.
Very nice woody, piney aroma with a unusual subtle hint of grapefruit.
As with the bottled Hopslam, huge hop flavor up front. Pungent, tart grapefruit with pine fills the mouth. Lingering, dry bitter. As this baby sits, the honey comes out. Tasty as all hell.

RustyDiamond, May 18, 2009
Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
100 out of 100 based on 10,163 ratings.