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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

9,985 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,985
Reviews: 3,124
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 1,936
Gots: 1,512 | FT: 41
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed with honey. Hoppy as hell.

(Beer added by: beernbbq on 04-14-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,985 | Reviews: 3,124 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rwdkosak
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On-cask at the Stable poured into tulip. As expected from a cask, a short-lived head topped a bronze hue, unfiltered haze and slightly reddened. With a fully hopped nose I smelled this three times before sipping because it really did fill the senses.

Taste and mouthfeel were fantastic, smooth, extreme hop just as expected and as experienced with both bottled and on-tap sessions. The cask/firkin pour was exceptional though and one to remember!! The smoothness and drinkability of this glass was certainly noteworthy and the full 12% ABV (don't believe the 10% on the bottle...), can surely be felt but not necessarily tasted and by no means overpowering the drink.

I felt fortunate to have this on cask, apparently only three will be served in a two state region and this happened to be just down the street; complete with a representative from Bell's to swing the mallet! A nice touch with Bell's tulip glass as well.

rwdkosak, Feb 28, 2009
Photo of danielharper
4.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Transparent reddish-orange body, thick white head that leaves some lacing. Impressive quantity of head considering the ABV. Some carbonation in the glass.

Smell: Crisp hops up front, with a malty syrupy sweetness underneath. Strong honey backbone, lots of interesting sugar combinations. Hints of grapefruit and oranges.

Taste: Very sweet with honey on the first sit, with a heavy dose of hops on the back-end. Very dry on the finish. Very sugary, strongly flavored with grapefruit. High astringency due to alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Thick but smooth, goes down clean. Moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Not my all-time favorite DIPA, but I'm really curious to see how these age over time. I may stick them in a closet and try one again in six months or so.

danielharper, Feb 28, 2009
Photo of PirateUlf73
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass.

A: Slightly hazy golden-orange color with a bright white head. Retained pretty well and laced very nicely.

S: Do I have to say it. Very hoopy, mostly of a citrus variety, but I detect some sweet grassy notes as well. Also some notes of granny smith apples. Just a smidgen of malty sweetness manages to penetrate the wall of hops.

T: Surprisingly, not quite as hoppy as I expected, but that's just fine. Notes of citrus fruits, sweet grassy heather, puckering pine and a hint of caramel backbone. Definitely a hop bomb, but with a substantial malt taste to boot.

M: Heavy and thick, with moderately low carbonation. The beer massages the tongue nicely and finishes fairly clean, save a very bitter aftertaste.

D: A sipper that rewards taking it slow. May go well with a rich dinner dish.

This beer achieves a rare feat: being a balanced hop bomb. Yes, the hops are very much running the show, but I appreciated the strong malt character, which kept things from getting too crazy. A great brew and certainly deserving of MOST of the praise it gets.

PirateUlf73, Feb 27, 2009
Photo of Jimbo87
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beautiful clear gold, creamy off-white head. Pretty good lacing.

Smell is mindblowingly good. Tangy grapefruit. Sweet-like.

Taste: Malt flavor is subtle. Delicious bitter grapefruit hops. Some lingering sweetness and bitterness. Pine.

Mouthfeel is super smooth. pretty hefty body for the style.

Drinkability is limited by the intesity of flavor and the high abv. A great beer, but I can't really drink two in one sitting.

Jimbo87, Feb 27, 2009
Photo of daliandragon
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm not sure what I can say about this one that hasn't already been said. I've had this on tap a few times and always was extremely impressed although usually not in any condition to be reviewing anything.

First we see a golden reddish body with snowy, off-white head and impressive lace. The grapefruit and honey melange in the notice is exquisite, and unique enough, particularly for the style. Despite the name, this isn't a simple mushroom cloud of hops.

Wow, the honey is real powerful here, almost masking the hops and alcohol both, which would otherwise seem difficult to do. The aftertaste is strong grapefruit but not completely withering. The booze is understated but does still take a toll if you don't sip.

I agree that this is better on tap but still an iconic brew that every hop lover needs to at least try.

daliandragon, Feb 27, 2009
Photo of Blakaeris
3.83/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours hazy copper-orange with a crisp white head that leaves globs of sticky lacing.

Aroma is a combination of citrus and resinous piney hops. Malty base with accompanying tropical fruit notes - notably mango and peach.

Taste is similar to the nose. Grapefruit hops have a leafy green feel. Excellent citrus character with orange, apricot, and peach. Surprising amount of caramel malt and brown sugar sweetness for a DIPA. Finish is only modestly bitter, along with lingering citrus fruit.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Soft, and slick with hop oil.

A balanced beer that has a great deal of sweetness for the style. The high ABV is very well concealed. Drinks like an IPA, missing the aggressive nature I would expect from a DIPA. This does not taste like a hop monster or a 'big' beer. I guess I had expected something more from Bell's....

Blakaeris, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of cleeze
4.22/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

been on a big hop kick lately, and I am so glad this baby fell into my lap.

Poured a great golden color, almost copper. Nice frothy white head that disappeared to show some bad ass lacing.

Smells of citrus grapefruit, and lots of it. Smells hoppy as hell. Also picked up on the pine as well. Expecting more pine but I still love the grapefruit goodness

Taste was much like the smell. Hops bitch smackin' you in the face. Piney goodness blending well with a sweet honey taste.

Tangy mouthfeel. Makes me droool..

So glad I finally got a chance to try me some hopslam, not as good as Pliny but still damn good

cleeze, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of MEverritt
4.97/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Serving type: BTL

A- Light Copper in color. Left about 1/4inch head poured into a pint glass.

S- Smells of grapefruit or sour oranges. Hints of pinecones.

Taste- Very citrus-like. very yummy. Finishes with a slight taste of alcohol but was not overbearing at all.

M- almost creamylike but smoothe for the mostpart.

D- despite the high ABV. THis is a very drinkable beer. I could see myself having 4 to 6 in one session.

MEverritt, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of brianlg
4.35/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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

brianlg, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of SykDoc
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. This beer pours a lovely golden color and forms a 1/2 inch off-white head that minimally reduces to a full covering. No sediment and fizz is noted in the transparent gold color.

The aroma is a amazing mix of grapefruit and pine, which is a testament to the hops. Some mild sweet grass notes are also present.

The taste is, as the aroma. There is a significant amount of citrus fruits and pine from the hops with a sweet malt hint present early. I am also picking up the grass clippings in the taste and it is good. The alcohol is well hidden.

The mouthfeel is a fairly full bodied beverage with a significant level of bitterness and dryness that sits on the palate. The carbonation highlights the flavor very well. It is smooth and goes down very well.

Overall, this is a very good beer. I think the only thing that keeps me from rating it a 5 in drinkability is that I feel my palate is battered after one and the second does not get the deserving credit. Overall, an amazing beer.

SykDoc, Feb 25, 2009
Photo of KeefD
4.7/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally had this one on tap at Whistle Binkies on the Lake. Small head on tap, but still had some decent lacing. Smell was just as good as from the bottle. Nothing pure hop bliss. Pine and citrus all the way. Taste? Well, what can I say? It's delicious. So much orange, grapefruit, and various citrus flavors backed up by some pine resin and a very solid, very sweet backbone. Do I like it better on tap? Well, probably not. The first time I had it out of the bottle (which my bottle review implies) was just magical. I can't see that first experience being topped. The only difference was lighter carbonation from the tap than from the bottle. Still fantastic, nonetheless. Appearance and a bit of aroma is the only thing lacking on tap compared to from the bottle.

KeefD, Feb 25, 2009
Photo of CMW
3.85/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not sure why I haven't reviewed this yet...

A - Pours a light copper color with a medium sized white head. Retention is decent but lacing is incredible. Translucent and carbonation can be seen throughout.

S - Smells like red grapefruit and sour oranges. There is also some piney notes. Very strong.

T - Some malt of front but this is soon washed away but citrusy hops. Small amount of warming alcohol in the finish.

M - Very creamy and the carbonation is not overpowering.

D - Very drinkable even considering the abv.

CMW, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of cvfish
4.3/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - This beer poured a golden amber color that produced a fluffy white head that had good retention and left a decent amount of lace on the side of the glass

S - The nose of the beer was a little underwhelming than what I expected from a "Hopslam," but the honey, citrus, and pine mixture was quite pleasing

T - The taste of this beer was quite good, a good caramel malt with a good mix of grapefruits and honey in the middle and finished with a burst of bittering hops on the finish

M - This beer had a medium body along with a decent amount of carbonation

D - This is quite a DIPA, very tasty and drinkable, but beware of the ABV kick, you will not taste it at all, but this a great beer and another winner from Bell's

cvfish, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of praufs01
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Slightly hazy orange/yellow brew with a frothy off-white head that dissipates quickly.

Aroma - Wisps of semi-sweet raw honey float on a solid grapefruit and pine resin hop aroma.

Mouthfeel - Full bodied brew that has a moderate amount of small bubble carbonation. The brew is syrupy but not sticky.

Taste - Mildly sweet up front followed by a light grapefruit middle that smoothes out and finishes with a nice raw honey aftertaste.

Overall - Outstanding!!! I can really taste the raw honey in this brew. Just the right amount of everything. Full in flavor but not overly sweet, nor bitter, nor carbonated. Great looking, smelling, and tasting. I wish it wasn't 10% alcohol because I really would like to have more than two in a session ; )

praufs01, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of Gilgemesh
4.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a beautiful golden amber with a finger or two of head. Fluffy and light like whipped butter atop the amber candy below. The smell isn't as pungent as I expected, but is complex with a hint of the hoppy bitterness to come. The flavor is quite nice, and quite well rounded. Hops up front with a hint of the honey sweetness are followed by a nice hoppy bitter finish. Crisp and refreshing. This will be an excellent hot day beer and a very nice example of what I like in a DIPA. Worth the too much I paid for it.

Gilgemesh, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of Aenema
4.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a slightly cloudy amber with a full, sticky head and nice lacing.
Smell - Lots of grapefruit along with piney, citrus hops.
Taste - Starts with full, citrus hop burst and finishes with a bitter hop bite. Tremendously juicy grapefruit and rich overall experience.
Mouthfeel - Creamy with a crisp finishes that resets the palate and allows each sip to replay the great combination of flavors.
Drinkability - Great drinkability for a beer of this strength, the alcohol is well-masked.

Aenema, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of MPLS
4.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have experienced this beer on tap many times, but this was actually my first time buying a 6 pack of this stuff. I cannot believe the exorbitant price of hops. Oh well...

A: Pours a lustorous fuzzy golden orange. Sugary lacing. 3 cm foam cap.

S: Very aromatic, sweet, hoppy, fresh pine, and citrus.

T: Up front are pungent citrus hops, then the sweet malt is discernable only to be erased by an extensive bitter honey dryness. The hops are real clean and intense. Love it with the exception of the overly sweet aftertaste.

M: This guy is medium built, 5'8", good.

D: Too many of these and I'd get slammed drunk. Really enjoy this beer and will seek it out, probably on tap more than trying to purchase a 6 pack. Great IPA, just have a slight aversion to the cloying aftertaste.

MPLS, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of katiebecck
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tried this beer for the first time this year at D's Six Pax and Dogz in Pittsburgh, I was thrilled to find it there on tap. Arrived at the table a beautiful golden orange with nice lacing on the pint glass. The nose is so tremendous, I just had to share it with those sitting at the table with me, and all agreed - very hoppy and floral, with notes of fruit, especially pineapple. The taste didn't disappoint, with a great deal of fruity hops on the tongue right off the bat. Finishes off so smoothly that you'd never know about the high ABV. Feels smooth and creamy in the mouth, extreme drinkability - enough so that I immediately went next door to buy a whole case for the fridge. Always look forward to the release of this beer.

katiebecck, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of crashoveride
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer for the first time on tap at "Teresa's Next Door" in Wayne PA. It was part of their Double IPA day. It was poured into a 12 oz. goblet. The color was a deep reddish amber color with about an inch head. The nose was strong of hops and fruits. The taste was outstanding and tastes as good as it smells. It is often compared to Russian River's Pliny the Elder but Bells has been more consistent with flavor and appearance. The drink ability was excellent and I ended up having 3 glasses :). A highly recommended double IPA!

crashoveride, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of sweetbrew82
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. into a snifter/ no freshness date

P: Yellow from the bottle, and sits an appetizing apricot color in the glass. The white crown rises 1 finger high and is not quite as thick & creamy as other top-flight DIPA's, but still looks good. It was gone quickly, though, and settled to form a chunky halo while leaving loads of sticky lace behind.

A: Whoa! Aromatics just explode out of the bottle upon opening. One of the most explosively tropical-smelling DIPA's I've come across. Smells like sweet oranges, clementines, lots of peaches, melon, pineapple and caramel.

T: Triple IPA? Yeah, I'll go with that, wholeheartedly! Hopslam delivers a tsunami of citrus & tropical-flavored hops that brings tears to this hopheads' eyes. I swear, the malt is hardly even detectable underneath the onslaught of humulus lupulus. Seems to be more citrusy-sweet in the start with oranges, clementines, and tangerines. Then, tropical flavors burst onto the scene with peaches, melons, papayas, and pineapples. Caramel and a touch of honey lay underneath in supporting roles to help offset the intense hop attack. The IBU's have to be over 100, but somehow manage to be pretty gentle to the poor imbiber's tongue. It's more sweet in the start, but features a bitter dry finish that tingles the bitter region of the taste buds. Best of all, that whopping 10% ABV is undetectable aside from the slight warmth it provides to the back of the throat.

M & D: Medium-full bodied, thick & rich, and syrupy smooth. Drinkability is great, but that ABV is no joke!

Notes: This just may be the best DIPA that I've ever had the pleasure of drinking! I would stock up on this if I were in their distribution channels, for sure. In terms of DIPA's, they don't get any better than this. The sheer, unbridled brilliance that Hopslam delivers is absolutely amazing! Highly recommended

sweetbrew82, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of Evan87
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on cask at Uncle Mike's. Thanks Bells!

I love this beer on draft but I am in love with this beer on cask.

A - This beer is probably a little prettier on draft, but still a great lookig beer on cask.

S - Smells sweet and citrusy. Love the smell.

T - The cask version seems to mute the hop twang a little, but also hides the alcohol as well. Maybe hides it a little too much, if you know what I mean.

M - Smooth and creamy.

D - This exceptional beer was a delight to have on cask. I could drink this beer every day, but definitely not all day.

Evan87, Feb 23, 2009
Photo of schroederm
4.47/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In a snifter:

Opaque pleasant golden honey color. The smell has tons of pineapple, some grapefruit, and a touch of cranberry. Taste starts with honey follows up with lemon and pineapple. The bitter's a little lower than I had hoped for. Not hot, but alcohol is there. Excellent body. Fine carb, well done. I seriously want more. Only thing against it is a slight taste of alcohol.

Overall: This is my favorite IPA at the moment. The pineapple is really awesome. I would do anything to see Bell's distribute to MA.

schroederm, Feb 22, 2009
Photo of schellsbeer
3.25/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to my friend Jim for buying me a pint at WB's this evening. Nice to find on tap here in our home town. Now, to the review...

A - Very nice. Pale yellow in coloring with a nice head.

S - Fruit and hops. Sweet smelling. A nice IPA but not the best.

T - Fruit with hops. I like a bitter IPA and this was a sweet IPA. Double IPA???? Not sure. According to BA, it is a double IPA but only because of the ABV was very high...not because of the flavor. Fruit dominates this beer. Bananas and Pineapple are very noticeable. Too much so if you ask me. Also, hops was not up to par. Hop Slam....not for me. More like a hop spittle. Was on tap so it was ultra fresh but not something that was over the top like most Imperial IPAs for sure.

M - Clean and refreshing but other than that....just good in my book.

D - High ABV and not that much hops, just average for me. Also, since this is only brewed on a seasonal level, not that impressive. I have had better. Sorry.

Now, before I get slammed from other BAs, remember this review is my opinion and not any one elses. I love bitter IPAs and this was not that bitter. Good at best. Will I seek this out? No, especially since I can get better IPAs at a much lower price. Just average in my book.

schellsbeer, Feb 22, 2009
Photo of thehand
4.3/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into Samuel Smith pint glass. Bright clear golden orange, 1" frothy bone white head. Sticky spotty lacing remains along with a thick foamy cap of head. Aroma is sweet floral honey, earthy piney orangey citrus. Taste is outstanding, sweet floral honey up front, bitter grapefruit in the back, long bitter finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and full, finish is long and astringent. A glorious beer. So easy to drink if you love the hops.

thehand, Feb 22, 2009
Photo of Brewno8it
4.97/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have only had this wonderful beer on tap. Not complaining, the best way to get it if you can.
The beer was poured in a classic Imperial Pint glass. The color was golden amber with a hint of a cherry color hue with a thick creamy head that clings to the glassware.

The smell is what I would describe as addictive. I wish I could find a candle to burn that smells as hoppy and complex as this brew. The beer smells of citrus and grapefruit with a nice whiff of sweetness.

The taste is so balanced of grapefruit, citrus, and honey. It has deep body and malty balance to blend with the herbal overtones.

The mouth has a feel of something so flavorful, balanced, and lightly carbonated that you want to hold it there forever. But swallowing does allow you to have a second pint!

It is hard to believe that this brew can be 10.2% alcohol. It is masterfully balanced and easy to drink. The aroma and feel are so wonderful that you can keep drinking. BE CAREFUL, it will sneak up on you because the alcohol is so "disguised" by the artistry within.

Brewno8it, Feb 22, 2009
Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 9,985 ratings.