Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

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10,267 Ratings

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Ratings: 10,267
Reviews: 3,132
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 2,057
Gots: 1,571 | FT: 39
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: 10,267 | Reviews: 3,132 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of WYVYRN527
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: (4.5) Amber to orange in color, with a creamy white head that retains itself through each sip. Lacing is at it's peak, coating the glass all the way down.

Smell: (5.0) Grapefruit, pine, cedar, are most dominant on the nose, with a malt backbone of biscuit, caramel, and honey.

Taste: (4.5) Citrusy, piney, and pungent, this brew is a monster. Suprisingly, the finish is very mellow, with malty notes that balance out the amount of hops used in this beer.

Mouthfeel: (4.5) Full-bodied and viscous, HopSlam coats the tastebuds and leaves the flavors there for the remainder of the night.

Drinkability: (4.0) While high in ABV and IBUs, Bell's has produced a beer that, while in the Extreme category, is very easy to drink, and is by far one of the best double IPAs in todays market.

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

Bottle of batch 9470 hardpoured into my DFH signature glass.

A: Hazy deep gold with a gigantic fluffy white head that quickly dissipates to a skim of tight bubbles. Some decent lacing is present.

S: Flowers and tropical fruit such as grapefruit/pineapple and a touch of pine.

T: Sweet honey up front followed by a citrus/pineapple attack finished with a suprisingly light bitterness (relative to the style of DIPA). The honey sweetness weaves in and out of the flavor.

M: Heavy at first, but finishing a little light. Not an enamel stripper, but leaves a gritty feeling on the teeth.

Drinkability: Good. HopSlam is not perfect, but it is the best DIPA that I have encountered. What also helps is that HopSlam is relatively cheap and abundant when it is in season.

Photo of brownbeer
4.85/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled 12-30-09

Pours golden with some orangey hues and a thick, white crown and webby lacing.

Fresh, vibrant grapefruit, dank hop oils, lemongrass.

Very crisp and clean on the palate with orange, grapefruit, and lemon citrus. I imagine simcoe hops play a big role in the taste. There's a certain sweetness, possibly from the honey, that really sets it apart. Supremely balanced for the strength, not as astringent as a lot of other DIPAs making it extremely drinkable.

It's really friendly and original, making it my favorite of all time. Newman, you magnificent bastard!

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

Pours a great thick head that sticks around. Has a strong bodied dark golden color with a lot of activity about. Very strong, vibrant aroma. Very appealing. I'm not one that typically likes hop infused beers, but this one is great. The label calls it a "biting,bitter,tongue bruiser of an ale." I don't think it is as rough as they might make it seem. Very drinkable, and at 10% abv that is saying something.

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

Appearance: Poured from a bottle into a large wine glass. Beer is golden in color with a large, frothy head. It's fairly clear with just a little haziness to it. The head takes a good couple of minutes to dissipate and leaves good lacing on the sides of the glass. Good carbonation coming up from the bottom of the glass.

Smell: One of the best smelling DIPAs out there. Grapefruit and pine aromas abound, as well as bright floral hops and a hint of what smells like pineapple. Mmmm...yummy.

Taste: As the name suggests, there is a decent punch of hop flavor, but it is surprisingly well balanced between the hoppy bitterness and malty sweetness; probably due in part to the honey/malt combo in the recipe. While some DIPAs finish a bit harshly, the balanced character of this beer lasts throughout the drinking experience. Just a great, crisp, smooth taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied; good carbonation and hops offset the high ABV/malt character.

Drinkability: Probably one of the most drinkable DIPAs out there. The 10 percent ABV is hardly discernible and there is no boozy flavor to speak of. This is so smooth in fact that if you're not careful, it might pull the old sneak-attack on you!

This is definitely one of my favorites. Given the limited release, I feel like I need to stock up when it's available so I can enjoy the experience for longer than the month or two it's brewed.

Photo of archiespeck
4.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Batch # 9471.

A - Golden orange with little head and a ton of lacing.

S - Citrus fruits dominated by grapefruit.

T - I was expecting to be knocked out by the bitterness, but Bell's did an amazing job of balancing it out with honey. Still, a "tongue bruiser" as the label states. A lot of the citrus comes through midway through, with the bitterness coming at the end.

M - Decent balance, but I can't hold this one on the tongue too long.

D - As many others have stated, the alcohol is well hidden and the beer does not come off as boozy.

I've drank 2 so far out of my 6 pack. Both times I had planned on drinking two, and both times had to switch to something else after drinking one. It's delicious, but so hardcore that one bottle will do you.

Photo of pdoran10
4.8/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

the beer pours a golden color with a small amount of head. Looks fresh and great already. The smell is very strong and floral. Smells very complex right off the bat. I get floral with a hint of citrus and malt. Definitely one of the strongest most complex smells i have gotten from an IPA. The taste is amazing! It is floral with a hint of citrus at first and finishes with a touch of malt and honey backbone, very well balanced. I don't usually like much malt in my IPAs, but this is done right! Mouthfeel is fine for and DIPA a bit thicker than a normal IPA, as to be expected. Drinkability is surprisingly great for a 10% DIPA, only downfall is that it tastes so good, that you want more, but the ABV prohibits you from drinking too much.

Photo of samie85
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours a apple juice color with a white 1/2 finger head into a tulip.

S-The main thing going on here is hops with pine, pineapple, grapefruit, orange, and mango notes with some caramel malt, and maybe just a bit of honey.

T-I'm getting bitter grapefruit, orange, pineapple and pine hoppiness along with the honey and caramel malt to smooth everything out.

M-Wow, I forgot how smooth the mouthfeel on this one is. It's on the full bodied side of medium body with low carbonation.

D-I still can't believe how easy these go down. What? It's 10%? Really? The ABV will definitely sneak up on you though, be careful... I speak from experience.

Photo of trbergman
4.85/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A - Pours a clear orange-yellow with one finger of bone white head.

S - Very lush and juicy, with caramel, toffee, orange, grapefruit, pineapple, and mango. Really aromatic.

T - A nice mashup of the East Coast and West Coast style DIPAs. Solid malt base provides a sweet backup to the hops, with caramel, toffee, and a smidge of honey. Loads of hop flavor as well, with citrus zest, pineapple, and mango. Plenty of bitterness, though the sweetness of the malt means that the beer is really quite balanced.

M - Medium-full body, good level of carbonation helps to perk up the hop bitterness.

D - Fantastic beer. Definitely leaves me wanting another... tomorrow.

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

I tried this beer in bottled form from a six pack that I purchased.

This beer pours with a very lovely color similar in tint to that of pineapple juice (due to lighting it may appear brighter or darker depending on the room).

The effervescent aroma of hops hits both the nose and the palate with a "slam" very indicative of its namesake.

Though quite bitter through the immediate tasting, its sweet counterbalance, with the help of honey as an ingredient, replenishes the initial hop effect with a very accommodating smoothness.

This gracious transition allows this particular beer to be both robust, and yet, also extremely drinkable because of the subtle and smooth juxtaposition of the intense hops proportionally balanced by a sweet merger of honey and malt, flourishing with this brew's ability to transcend from a very intense hop distinction to a sweet, almost nectar-like effect in its final palate effects. Simply put, this is a "must-have beer" for any hop head or anyone who wants to try a great beer!

Photo of prg1976
5/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Clear amber coloring.

Smell is phenomenal, like a freshly sliced grapefruit sitting in front of you.

Taste is citrus, not super-bitter, like I was expecting. Grapefruit, pineapple.

Doesn't feel like a 10% abv. Actually very light and crisp. Could drink this forever.

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

First time having this hyped beer -- picked it up right after it hit town. Bellsbeer.com Batch Finder indicates my batch -- 9501 -- was bottled on Dec. 30. I'm drinking on Jan. 15.

A: Poured into a Founders pint, it's a bright orange-honey color with a slightly pillowy head that leaves good lacing throughout.

S: Hard to beat this in the DIPA category. I've heard folks call this "Four-Hearted," as in, a doubled version of Bell's Two-Hearted. The nose makes the best argument for this. It's like the pineapple and orange aromas from the Two-Hearted are amplified here. Really huge citrus-fruit aromas. Lovely.

T: If I didn't know there was honey brewed into this beer, I'd realize it right now. Instead of being walloped by hops or alcohol, the first wave over the mouth is a clean honey sweetness, which goes a long way in preparing the mouth from the hop onslaught that's coming. The hop bitterness comes out big time, and then the honey reveals itself again on the finish.

M: Good carbonation -- beer feels neither creamy nor prickly in the mouth.

D: Incredibly drinkable for a 10% DIPA. Wow. You definitely couldn't polish off a six-pack in one night (if you do, bravo), but you can easily down one or two of these quickly before realizing you just had a hop bomb that's packing 10% abv.

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

Whoa! Silly me for only purchasing one six pack on the first visit. I'm a skeptic about hyped beers, but this one delivers.

Pours a very bright orangey-amber color with medium sized white cap that receds nicely to a good rim layer, with plenty of residual lace.

Nose is very bright with fresh fruit. Literally those nose on this compared to other DIPA's is like comparing fresh squeezed OJ to some generic brand made from concentrate. Fresh, citrusy, floral, a delight... While I get mostly orange and grapefruit there's also some miscellaneous tropical fruit that I can't nail down - maybe mango, pineapple, apricot perhaps.

On the palate I'm amazed at the honeyed & gently sweet flavors that start things off for the big hop flavors that follow. Although they're full-flavored, they're not overwhelming like a Double Bastard, for example. Just right for this style, IMO. Alcohol is masked relatively well and this is a delight to drink. Rating relative to style, this is probably the most drinkable DIPA I've had.

Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip. So excited!!

A - Pours a nice light copper color or strong golden color with some mild reddish hints. There is a tight and dense thin head that is about 1 finger high. There is some nice carbonation rising from the bottom and the head recedes to a thin mat. There is some sticky lacing to the sides as I drink the beer.

S - Strong piney and floral aroma. Like a bouquet of roses with pine needles in it. Some ruby red grapefruit pulp is also present and citrus hints are present. Very attractive. Very sweet smells.

T - Wow!!! I cant believe this beer isn't more readily available. It begins with a sweet grainy taste followed by a strong citric but equally sweet grapefruit sweetness. There is also some hints of almond and of course the sweet honey. The malty grain is definitely present and there is some biscuit and bready taste midway through the beer hidden behind the sweetness and citrusy character. Hop character can be felt throughout the beer. It finishes with a biscuity taste and the characteristics dry, bitter and citric hop tastes. As the beer warms the ABV is definitely perceivable but is very well hidden with the honey and the rest of the beer.

M - medium-light, with good CO2 balance and very complex flavors.

D - High aside from the ABV. Plus, the fact that its a limited release makes you want to make it last.

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

Thanks to khumbard for the fine box today. I couldn't help but open a hopslam immediately.

Golden amber, barley fields coated in fine wildflower honey, the finest days on a sunny farm. Citrus and pine, muted behind a rosy wink of delight. Smooth and crisp, who said it is 10% I do not believe! 5 or 6, sure, but no this cannot be that big.

May the fine ladies and gents at Bell's be thanked, especially that cute dread-head girl who served me this august.

Photo of FreshmanPour77
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 01-14-10
Cold from a bottle to a glass

A - Golden amber color, 2 fingers of foam with lots of carbonation present throughout the glass, great head retention with a ring of lacing

S - Sweet citrus hop smell followed with a piney smell.

T - I just received a Chuck Norris type round house kick to the face of hops! Followed by a karate chop of pine. For a second I thought I was deep in the northern woods of Minnesota with the pine aftertaste. For such a harsh reality of a brew it turned smooth pretty quick. This to me made it very enjoyable

M/D - Not that I have had that many but this by far is the hoppiest brew that I have enjoyed to date. Being pretty fresh though I couldn't do that many in one sitting but very much so worth it. I enjoyed a one year old HopSlam at New Years and of course lighter on the hop kick but still very enjoyable. A for sure brew to drink fresh or with some age on it, I had bought a sixer so I plan to update and add to this review with some added notes as time goes by!

Photo of Burl41
4.97/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Golden and honey is color, with a great firm two finger head. It is cleanly filtered with no haze.

Smell- Wow, hops normally do not have this aroma. A citrus smell, without any resiny or sharp bitter notes. unique and pleasing to say the least.

Taste- I don't know of a way to discribe this brew as other than exceptional. There is an amazing hop pressence but it is tempered by the slight very slight sweetness of the honey. What comes through is an amazingly smooth and delightful DIPA. Citrus, hop notes abound, with a very small amount of carmal malt sneaking in.

Mouthfeel- Again, perfectly balance.

Drinkability- Most DIPA's have such a punch of bitterness, that they become a beer to be slowly sipped. Much like a cup of coffee that was hot enough to sue over. But this is so smooth and delightful, one cannot taste the alchohal even though it is 10%. I have had many beers at the 7.5% mark that where much more noticble. A great session beer, however you might end up on the floor if you attempt it.

Photo of Dsb3350
4.22/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bell's hopslam. What can you say that hasn't already been said. I bought this beer in bottle form for a decent price, $4 a bottle. Poured the beer into a standard American pint and it held a great frothy head. Immediate overwhelming hop presence in the nose. I could smell this beer all evening. This beer taste of a hop plant, check the label. It starts strong and finish's like a 12 round heavy weight champion. It's mouthfeel is a like a lingering hangover sitting on your tongue. I feel that if you drink more than two you will not be able to drink anything else for the rest of the night...and I would be totally fine with that.

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

Served in a 12oz snifter. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As served the beer is a nice dark tangerine color with a 1/8" white head that receded to a ring and an irregular shaped film of foam on the surface of the liquid. Throughout the beer sipping left some nice, but sparse lacing.

Smell: The aroma has a soft pleasant almost floral citric character that mingles together some orange, tangerine and lemon flower with some hints of malt and honey.

Taste: Much as expected from the nose, the complex flavor of the beer is almost sweet with honey and malt backbone and it is almost bitter with the flavors of orange zest and tangerine. But the flavor is also unexpected from the nose as there are some tropical fruits thrown in for good measure.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is full to medium bodied and smooth, with moderate but persistent carbonation that lasts throughout the beer. The finish is long and gentle with hop flavors riding on the sweetness until they gradually fade away leaving a slight dryness that invites the next sip.

Drinkability: This is a first rate DIPA that is well made and very very drinkable. I could easily have another right now but will pass because of the ABV. I'm sure I'll be having this again. One particularly nice thing about this beer is that one can taste the hops without the tongue rasping that characterizes many DIPAs. But that being said, for me this is not at the top of my short list simply because out of the bottle and with a bit more age I can pick up traces of the honey which is something I prefer more hidden or not in the beer at all. I like this one much better on tap.

Photo of nkersten
3.55/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Light golden, honey color with minimal head. Very little lacing.
S- Aroma is very good, dominated by complex hops, mostly tropical fruit with some piney hops crammed in there somewhere.
T- After such an impressive aroma, the taste is a bit of a let down. Not nearly as much hop flavor as there is in the smell. Still, tropical hop flavors, some pale malt but nothing interesting, a bit on the sweet side. Some alcohol in the aftertaste as well, but the sweetness of the beer does a decent job at covering it up. Not overly bitter but still plenty of hop character.
M- Medium body and carbonation, like most midwest DIPAs this one seems to be a bit heavier then it needs to be.
D- With the high abv I dont think I could have more then a couple of these before I moved on to something else. A bit disappointing, not my favorite imperial IPA.

Photo of ShogoKawada
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From my first BIF.. thanks a billion, MbpBugeye!!!

The only other Bell's I had was The Oracle. Interesting to see how this compares.

A- Beautiful. Glowing amber/orangey with ruby highlights. Snow-white head that settles to two fingers and laces immediately. Great, dense head with good retention. Looks like damn near the best DIPA I've ever seen.

S- Reminds me of PtE.. sweet, floral, citrus, not sure if I'm picking up on the honey or if it's just the sweet floral hops.

T- OK, I can taste the honey. Citrus, sweet citrus fruit, not overripe but darn close (not that that's a bad thing). A bit of bitter/pine that I didn't get in the nose comes through at the end, but it is very mild and helps cut through the sweetness. Malt is a bit bready but really playing second fiddle to the hops here.

M- Where's the ABV? Incredible. A hop head's dream.

D- High, ABV in mind... I could get into some serious trouble with this one. One of the better third coast offerings. Worth seeking out if you like your hops.

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

I don't buy into hype. I expected to go to the Bell's Dinner at Spinnerstown Hotel in PA and SLAM hopslam as another over-hopped, over-hyped burly man brew.


The color was a pleasant orange-amber with some darkness at the center. The head seemed solid and full, and hung around for quite a while.

I took my first sniff and it was an explosion of aromatic citrus, sweetness, pine, grasses and herbs - all in the hops and honey.

The flavor is an amazingly complex, balanced and tantalizing. It is juicy and sweet with honey and grainy malt. Toasted bread and jam-like grapefruit and orange. Each sip also fills the nose with more intense but not upsetting hop fragrance.

The mouthfeel is full, smooth and satisfying. As you drink down the glass the flavors seem to become deeper, smoother and heavier with the bitterness increasing but never becoming overwhelming. The alcohol presence is subdued for the huge amount hidden in this brew.

It is extremely, dangerously drinkable.

I don't normally like IPA/DIPA blends but I feel this is a beer that not only exemplifies but help to set the standards of a beer.

Photo of 05Harley
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle # 9501 (12/09)

Purchased through West lakeview Liquors, Chicago

Price - $17.49/6-pack

Appearance: It pours a hazy golden color with fines in suspension. After a few minutes the head disappears to just a ring around the glass.

Smell: Hops! Hops! Hops! So damn good. Pine and citrus round it out.

Taste: WOW! This beer is amazing. Bitter (but not overwhelming) with a slite taste of honey which is just enough to balance out the massive burn one would expect from a hop bomb. Grapefruit coming through in the backround. Alcohol is well hidden at 10%.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation. Goes down smooth with a thin body and leaves a slite bitter after taste.

Drinkability: Oh yeah!! My problem is I didn't buy enough of it. I'm kicking myself in the ass for not biting the bullet. Do yourself a favor and stock up. Good job Bell"s!!

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

taken from notes, had ontap a few nights ago.

Poured into a pub glass, producing a solid 1+ inches of frothy white head. Receding to leave thick lace coverage and a good collar of white.
Transparent filtered look, color is a darker gold.

Aroma is quite fruit forward with pineapple, pine, grapefruit, malt still comes through though with hints at caramel and biscuits.

Taste is an amalgamation of flavors and aromas coming together to form one badass beer. All aroma's transferred into taste, pineapple and mango coming through swinging in a sweet nectar. Hops do bitter up through the swallow with pine and lingering grapefruit. Pineapple sings through all flavors lingering amongst the bitters in a semi sweet caramel filled delight.
Mouthfeel is terrific as usual with an abundance of soft carbonation and a semi creamy feel to it.
Alcohol in heat is not present in aroma or taste, making this one dangerous brew!

Awsome as always.

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

Poured from a tap into a 12 oz snifter.

Appearance: A very relaxed amber with hazy undertones. There is a very small head which vanishes quickly and leaves minimal lacing.

Smell: Wow. As I was talking to the bartender I could smell the hops wafting up to me. The complexity of the aroma was off the charts. I was first hit with the citrus and then the pine and finally the scent of farm fresh wet hops. Simply spectacular.

Taste: Again the complexities of the hops really stand out. The fruity hops present themselves first but the one works its way into the flavor all while there is a sense of freshness involved. A gorgeous symphony of the different hops which is complimented nicely by some bitterness and s very mild malt backbone. The beer is so strong with flavor but some how really invites you take another sip immediately.

Mouthfeel: Most IPA's this complex leave me feeling worn out. Not HopSlam. The intense flavors have more of a relaxing sensation as they wash over your tongue with just the right body, carbonation and bitterness.

Drinkability: A dangerously drinkable brew. I could easily have four or five without thinking.

This may be my new benchmark for IPA's. Well done Bell's!

Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 10,267 ratings.