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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

10,178 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,178
Reviews: 3,131
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 2,002
Gots: 1,556 | FT: 38
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: 10,178 | Reviews: 3,131 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of baggio
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5


Big thanks to Traquairlover for sending me a 6-pack of this much sought-after beer!

A: Golden orange with a big, white, head and lots of lacing.

S: Citric notes (lemon & grapefruit), caramel, Pine.

T: Citric notes, Honey, Caramel, Hint of exotic fruit, Pine, Hops.

M: Lots of bitterness upfront but ends with a nice touch of sweetness from the honey and malt. Balanced to perfection. Alcohol is extremely well hidden.

Not quite the fantastic beer i remembered it to be but still damn tasty. Extremely well balanced and quite sessionable despite it's 10%. Yummy!

baggio, Feb 14, 2009
Photo of BZero007
4.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I was at my local beer and wine store picking up some well known and great tasting IPA's when the clerk mentioned the Hopslam and how they sold out in hours. It was then my mission to find this beer that was so sought after in the NOVA area. A Total Wine in the area had one case that someone had just canceled. After picking up two six packs and letting it chill over night, i savored this gift from the beer gods and it made me sing.

A- Was a lovely glow of a Golden Amber and Orange, with a cloudiness that looked to carry much flavor.

S- Smell was of a allot of Hops and a strong background of Honey and citrus.

T- A taste you will not forget, literally. Strong tastes of Honey, Citrus, and Hops mix. Also fruit flavors that linger in the background. The first sip had me sign out loud of great beers. The next morning I still had the taste of the beer lingering in my mind.

Overall- This is up there on my top 3 IPA's. This beer honestly has such a personal flavor to it that you will remember it's flavor long after you are done.

BZero007, Feb 14, 2009
Photo of adamhdv
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into sniffer...

Pours a very bright golden orange with a cloudiness. Great 1.5 finger white head that thins to about .5 head. Lacing is perfect, top to bottle of glass, soapy like.

Smell, wow, reminds me a lot of FFF Alpha King in aroma. Citrus, grapefruit, hops are strong, not too strong though- about perfect.

Flavor is sweet grapefruit, perfect balance of strong pine hops and malt.Thought this would be more bitter, however its great how it is...clean and crisp on the palette.

Mouthful seems medium bodied and carbonated- smooth.

Refreshing and a easy to drink. At 10% ABV, watch out, its hidden very well...but I'm not complaining, it's very nice.

Props to Bells on this complex brew!

adamhdv, Feb 14, 2009
Photo of coalcracker
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

New review: 2011 batch
Appearance: Medium gold in appearance with good head retention and lacing.
Smell: A base of piney hops but peaches and pineapple also prevalent and well-defined. Honey more noticeable in aroma this time.
Taste: Hops burst through andbuild slowly. Citric and grassy elements go along for the ride. Hops then again reappear and linger a bit through the end. Malts are a bit bready. Finish mildly bitter and just a tad soapy, but pleasant. Alcohol warmth presents but is deceptive.
Mouthfeel: Medium to a bit on the thick side. Very smooth and a bit slick.
Drinkability: Very deceptive ABV. Hop bitterness well-balanced.
Overall- just a great beer- nothing lost in quality over the last tasting. Complex and tasty!

Appearance: Pours a medium gold color with fuzzy head that dissipates not long after the pour.
Smell: Crisp and sharp aroma immediately after opening bottle. Quite 'piney' in nature. A degree of malt and honey also peek through.
Taste: A well-balance strike between the hops and malt here, with a slight nod to the hops. Hops jump at the onset- not as bitter as I had imagined- displaying piney and citrus-like elements. A mild sweetness then pulls though- carrying a taste of caramel malts and honey at the end. Not at all cloying. Fantastic, complex, yet clean.
Mouthfeel: Medium feels with a bit of a slickness on the tongue.
Drinkability: I could easily have several in one sitting, but the ABV would probably put the brakes on that idea.

Overall- lives up to the hype. This beer has all the attributes I seek in a great DIPA. This beer may have just outshined my previous DIPA king- Dogfish Head 90-Minute. Complex and delicious!

coalcracker, Feb 14, 2009
Photo of kittywamp
4.5/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

what a great beer. needs more credit. it tastes like liquid gold. needs to be a year round beer. i love it. what a great beer. this year tastes like grapefruit. with a golden color. the smell it wonderful. i would drink it over and over again. its a little spendy but worth every penny

kittywamp, Feb 14, 2009
Photo of CaptCleveland
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle from 6-pack packaged on January 12, 2009 poured into pint glass.

Saffron-colored body with thick head of white foam, settles to a fingerbreadth throughout tasting.

Pleasing grass, earth, grapefruit combination.

To quote from the bottle: " A biting, bitter, tongue bruiser of an ale", but in actuality a rather smooth, hop-filled warmth descends upon the buds with a bit of after-swallow tingle.

Smooth, no oily resin here.

Clean, hop-filled ale goes down easy. The 10% ABV well cloaked. Recent tasting of Victory Hop Wallop and DFH 90 minute completes the triumvirate with Bell's DIPA the clear favorite. If there is a better DIPA I haven't had the pleasure. Highly recommended.

CaptCleveland, Feb 13, 2009
Photo of wheatyweiss
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint.

Pours a slightly cloudy light orange, with a towering rocky head that leaves ample lacing.

Aroma is fresh citrus hops, floral and bright. Malt is lighter roast and the balance is nice. Hop aroma is strong, but not overpowering. Boozey aromas eminate.

Flavor is sweet malt with fresh hops in the middle finishing slightly bitter and dry with a nice malt roll. Hops are grapefruit and floral and go beautifully with this particular malt roast. Biscuity and bready with a soda cracker like pop. light booze hit on the finish, but very well disguised.

Mouthfeel is medium and chewy with the malt giving a nice body.

Drinkability is dangerously high for a beer with this ABV.

(2010 batch)

This year it's pineapple! Sweeter than last batch, I swear I'm chewing a hop cone and pineapple at the same time.

(2011 batch)

This is a very astringent version, less pineapple but more than the first I tried. The alcohol and hops don't play as well together this year.

wheatyweiss, Feb 13, 2009
Photo of HardTarget
4.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle Inspection: Great label! Dude getting the hop body slam, sign me up. Honey! This just keeps getting better. 10% abv.! Talk dirty to me. Indecipherable date code?!! I take back half the fantasies I've had about you.

Aroma: Flowers, you shouldn't have. They smell green and fresh with a definite Rose aroma. Juicy grapefruits too, with some key lime and apricot, hop oils just dripping. Ok, you've got my attention.

Appearance: Murky glass shows a tan blonde body leaving wavy white lace as it passes that forms a thin curtain.

Flavor: Pretty much what it shows on the label. There's a real "wow" to the amount of big bodied hops that fall on you. The stunningly great thing here is there is so little bitter, just a twist of lime peel at the end. The hop flavor is just massive! West Coast kind, all citric. There is a flash of malt in the finish, which is really holding the package together. Scary, I just remembered the abv, but only after feeling the alcohol hit my system after 3 greedy pulls. There is a green tea aspect here too, which may be my association with the honey. A pithy Orange Juice flavor comes in once I start to acclimate.

Mouthfeel: Body is medium/light, carbonation medium and at an enjoyable level, the texture slick and the beer goes very dry in the finish where I'm starting to catch a little alcohol tastes.

Overall Impression: Scary. There must be an entire 17 ft. hop plant in this bottle. The flavor is just amazing; I'm reminded of Two Hearted Ale. Takes that hard to scratch alpha acid spot and leaves it raw and satisfied.
Seek: consume fresh.

Thanks to icefisherman for the trade.

HardTarget, Feb 13, 2009
Photo of dcgrp
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow, incredible beer. On tap at Stub and Herbs in Minneapolis. Served up in a Bell's Goblet.

Let this one get a few degrees warmer, soo tasty. This is all about the complexity and depth of the hop tastes and smells put together. Also had this one in a bottle, but I think I preferred the on tap version at Sturbs.

dcgrp, Feb 13, 2009
Photo of raoulduke37
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Oh good lord, what a beer. I can see why this is talked about so much and even compared to Pliney. It is worthy of that comparison. Thanks very much to psunate for the trade. This one will not be taken off my want list anytime soon. Whoever gave this one a D- must have had a bad bottle or something. This beer is objectively superb.

Appearance is a beautiful orange, almost apple juice color, with light yellow highlights. Beautiful off-white head, that doesn't stick around for too long, but lacing does. The smell hit me like a punch in the face, if that could ever be considered a positive experience. Strong, unmistakable scent of fresh pineapple, with other citrusy highlights in the background. Taste wise, this is a phenomenal IIPA. It claims to be "biting and bitter" but this is balanced so well that the most harsh IPA critic would even enjoy this brew. It's hard for me to discern the initial flavor, but afterwards you get a nice kick of hops all the way down. So so good. This one is creamy, smooth, tasty, well balanced, and perfectly crafted. Kudos to Bells Brewery, those gents are alright. Keep these coming.

raoulduke37, Feb 13, 2009
Photo of dismal
4.6/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've heard a lot of great things about this beer so I was excited to try it. Ended up picking it up while on a trip to see a friend. It poured a hazy orangish, light amber, off gold color. Had about a one finger head that faded not to long after pouring. The smell is great! Very hoppy and piney. After taking a sip the mouthfeel is good, not light at all but not heavy just right really. The taste is very sweet because of the honey and the hops stand out nicely, piiney and a bit citrusy. The flavor is very good. With a 10% ABV it's hidden very well making this beer very very drinkable. I could easily drink these! In the end I'm glad I went out of my way to grab a six pack of Hopslam up. Very well worth the $17 I paid for it.

dismal, Feb 12, 2009
Photo of BenJames1984
5/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

To start off, I am very fortunate to live in Mid-Michigan, as the Bell's Brewery is only about two hours away.

What's there to say? This is the first year I've had this delectable seasonal beer from Bell's, and was very impressed. I've always enjoyed their Two-Hearted IPA, and I had an intuition that Hopslam wouldn't be a let-down. I was right.

First impressions are important. As a hop-lover, seeing a label depicting a guy being crushed under the weight of an over-sized hop was enough to sell me. However, the wonderful taste around this beer didn't stem from it's hoppy-ness. It was the combination of a sweet honey flavor AND the hops, with a ten percent ABV to boot; very smooth and drinkable. Considering a six pack is nearly twenty dollars with tax + deposit, it's worth the ticket.

HopSlam is currently in my top five, and probably won't be going anywhere for a while.

BenJames1984, Feb 12, 2009
Photo of Ineedabeerhere
4.43/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big Thanks to Hophead101 for the hookup on this. Can't believe this is the first time I've tried this brew.

Pours a slightly hazy amber with a slow rising head helped by the shape of my tulip to build to a one and a half finger size.

Nice aroma- not as strong or forward as Pliny or Capt. Lawrence's DIPA. Solid hop flavors in the aroma. Some deep piney, resinous hops- some citrus I suppose but not as apparent as some other IPAs. The flavor is a great complex formulation of hop flavors. I can't say that I pick up honey per se, but there is some sweetness through the back that you can tell isn't necessarily coming from the malt.

Nice substance to the mouthfeel- I can't comprehend that this is 10%. Extremely drinkable- the alcohol never crossed my mind once. The hop flavors did a great job to cover this up. Overall this beer was not really what I was expecting, but its delicious regardless. A must for IPA and hop fans.

Ineedabeerhere, Feb 12, 2009
Photo of strangebrew52
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been waiting to try this for a while, finally had a friend bring some up from Milwaukee.

A: Nice orange color, 1 finger of head with nice lacing around the glass.

S: Hops!! I love this smell, if I would love this in a car air freshener!! Citrus and Pine definitely stand out as far as what I smell.

T: You get that Grapefruit/citrus taste along with the pine, and sweetness from the honey.

M: Medium bodies with just the right amount of carbonation.

D: Even though it's a 10% I could have a few of these at a time. I want more, putting the order in now :)

strangebrew52, Feb 12, 2009
Photo of rawhydes1
2.53/5  rDev -43.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Was really looking forward to having a "rare" Hopslam. So maybe I'm just feeling let down.

This beer seems extremely unbalanced to me. Nothing but HOPS, as the name suggests. Over the top piney flavor.

Bitter, syrupy, sticky finish.

Not impressed.

I would much rather have a SN, Nectar, DFH.

Maybe just TOO EXTREME for my taste.

rawhydes1, Feb 11, 2009
Photo of evantwomey
4.13/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle, thanks to Cindirene's in Ayden, NC. Served at around 45 F. Poured into a big snifter. Pours an amber-gold with about 1/2 an inch of head, which dissipates slowly and leaves spotty lacing. Aroma heavy on the citrus - grapefruit mostly. But its not as intense as I was hoping. Some honey and alcohol aroma as it warms. Taste is very nice - the first thing that hits you is a massive amount of hop flavor, again very citrusy. The finish is actually pretty sweet, mostly what comes through is the honey (which is an awesome addition to this beer). Surprisingly, I found this beer to be not that bitter at all, and the honey really helps smooth everything out. The drinkability is off the charts for a 10% beer, I could easily burn through a 6-pack of this in a night.

Overall, a very solid beer. I definitely wouldn't call it my favorite DIPA, but it is one of the most quirky beers I've had in a while and they pull it off.

evantwomey, Feb 11, 2009
Photo of JamesS
3.7/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice, if light, copper color, with some good initial head (quickly fading) and a wee bit of lacing. Nice strong hoppy scent, floral and citrus (extreme amounts of grapefruit, which I honestly don't care for as a melon). Nice deep hoppy taste from beginning to end, although the pine and the grapefruit battle a bit, with the grapefruit winning out. Goes down fine for a higher ABV beer, although there's a little roughness in it. A nice double IPA, there are better and worse.

JamesS, Feb 11, 2009
Photo of Strix
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pale golden-orange, fairly decent head, decent lacing.

Smells fantastic - citrusy, green, and crisp. Blindfolded, I'd say it's a blend of citrus juices.

Grapefruity citrus in front of a bready base, honey, and some malty sweetness. Hints of tropical fruits and pineapple. A bit of a piney aftertaste. Taste is fairly balanced, yet complex. No hint of alcohol - this doesn't feel like 10% at all.

Mouthfeel smooth, slightly viscous.

Wow, this is phenomenal, and dangerously drinkable. This is a great beer, and another great one from Bell's. The best IPA I've ever had for sure.

Strix, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of gonzo46and2
4.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at World of Beer in Westchase.

Pours a copper color with a relatively small head that dissipated pretty quickly. (It was a generous pour from the tap)

Aroma wasn't huge but was very pleasant. Mostly citrus in the nose with bits of pine and spruce resin.

Taste was mostly pine and spruce. Good maltiness and sweetness balances things out. A bit of warmth from the ABV but no offensive alchohol flavors.

Mouthfeel was surprising. It wasn't as bitter as I'd expected. Very well balanced. It has a quick finish.

Very good DIPA. Would like to find some bottles of this and compare to draft.

gonzo46and2, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of TooleBurger
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a: very light pour with minimal head

s: the smell was the highlight for me, it has a citrus, followed by a real hoppy smell

t: tasted a lot like the smell with a citrus burst followed by a hoppy pine bitter taste - I really like the way it changed

m: good mouthfeel with a nice bitter ending to follow the citrus beginning

d: again, I could drink a lot of these if they didn't get you so whacked

TooleBurger, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of fightingirishcmk
4/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Poured an amber color, very clear, light tan small head which dissipated quickly. Lacing was left on the glass.
S: Grapefruit, citrus, clover honey, sweet malts, slight pine smell, slightly floral
T: Starts with a piney bitterness, then citrus, followed by some sweetness from the honey. The finish is purely bitter followed by a slight burning acidity in my throat.
M: Sticky, medium bodied, right amount of carbonation
D: Just average. I bought a 6 pack last year, and thought it was good, not great. I went for the single bottle this year, and am glad I didn't spend the extra $12. Was not as pleasing as many others in the top 100 IMO.

fightingirishcmk, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of yeastsipper
4.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Beer pours a hazy light copper color with a nice head which disappears fairly quickly. The smell of this beer is really great. Some piney hops, but a really strong smell of lemon zest and some very noticeable grapefruit notes. There is something else in the nose that sets the smell apart, but I can't quite place it. Taste is bitter upfront before the honey-like sweetness balances on the mid-palate. Ultimately the hop bitterness reappears and lingers, and the alcohol becomes very evident. This is a winner. Very much enjoying this beer and like the fact that while it is a great IPA, it is slightly more unique than many other IPAs that are out there. I wish this was available in my area.

Picked up in a trade with sry23.

yeastsipper, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of bcm119
4.38/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy peach/orange color, which is the color of most of my favorite IPA's. Thin lacing around the edge. Ripe tropical fruit hops in the aroma, with a hint of alcohol. Plush, juicy hops-- dried apricot, ripe citrus and a gently drying, leafy green bitterness. A light malt profile with a soft sweetness brings some floral hints to the hops, but stays in the background and is well integrated. Hops are mostly on the flavoring end of the spectrum; bittering is on the light side for the amount of hop flavor in here. Finishes fairly dry with a fresh, citrus pith aftertaste.

A nice double IPA done spot-on in the San Diego style. My only gripe is the ABV-- you can often taste and smell the alcohol. If this was attenuated to the same degree and 8%, I think it would be even better. Still, this would be a regular if it was available around here. Thanks to Sanford for the free sample.

bcm119, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of TomGavin
4.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 12oz. bottle into a Sam Adams glass. Visually, the beer is stunning with a reddish-orange hue.

Nose: A gamut of citrus fruits; grapefruit, clemintine, mandarin orange all intermingling with spruce and honey lingering in the background of a sapid nose.

Body: Creamy and medium.

Palate: Quickly sweet and intensely hoppy with the aforementioned fruits translating in great balance. The honey makes itself known after the hop wave subsides revealing a trickle of malt. The finish is appealingly extensive.

Comment: An ideal imperial IPA. Will convert hop skeptics, and thrill hopheads.

TomGavin, Feb 10, 2009
Photo of callmemickey
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

this is one of god's gifts to mankind

A: transparent, golden, copper color... thick off white head.. great lacing.. sticky as all hell.

S: Grapefruit. Honey. Pine. Slight grass notes. Dash of alcohol. Delicate sweet-bitterness in perfect balance... i think i could sniff this beer til it was dry

T: The taste is everything you could ask for from the tease the nose gives you. Grapefruit hop bitterness is ever present, with a sweet honey maltness wrapping its way through every sip. Alcohol is barely perceptible.. The best thing about this beer is the layers of goodness. Each sip is just as profound as the previous.

M: Medium bodied, with a slightly dry bitter finish. Ideal carbonation makes this one a keeper.

D: I'd be a lier if i didn't admit that this is one of the most addictive beverages I have ever consumed. Can someone refer me to the nearest Hopslam Anonymous treatment facilities???

Worth every ounce of effort it took me to get a case of this... its going to take some will power to keep a bottle for about 9 months...

callmemickey, Feb 10, 2009
Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
100 out of 100 based on 10,178 ratings.