Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

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BA SCORE
99
world-class

10,267 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,267
Reviews: 3,132
rAvg: 4.49
pDev: 9.58%
Wants: 2,058
Gots: 1,574 | 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 SteveO1231
4.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Received a 6 pack of Hop Slam in a trade with HopHobo. 12 oz. long-neck with a green label featuring an image of some pour bastard who has just been pounded in a gigantic hop cone avalanche of some sort.

The brew pours a bright orange-amber with a nice chunks of foam that look like packing peanuts. Lacing looks as if spider-man has his way with my beer glass. Millions of super-tiny bubbles cascade to the surface. The aroma is absolutely beautiful, it covers the complete range of hop aroma one can think of. Tons of citrus, light pungent, and a bunch of pine. A bit of a fruity, sweet-tart aroma that reminds me of strawberry rhubarb pie. The medium-bodied brew has a fluffy texture when swished around on the palate. At this point the ABV makes itself known with some heat that numbs the palate like a shot of novocain. That strawberry-rhubarb pie character found in the aroma is found in the initial flavor of the beer. The rest of the beers flavor is a hopfest, full of lush, juicy, grassy-as-hell hoppiness, citrus peel and pine. I was expecting much more in term of a palate shredding bitterness with the finish but it is surprisingly crisp and refreshing. Don't get me wrong its grassy as all hell but the palate is left with a light grassy dryness and belly warm with booze. Sips way too easy for 10%!

Awesome DIPA,

Cheers!

Photo of nickfl
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - One and a half fingers of bone white head on top of a slightly hazy, copper colored body. The head settles slowly and leaves a thick layer of lace clinging to the glass.

S - Strong mint, citrus, licorice hop aroma, very juicy and sweet. With some effort, one can detect a strong, sweet malt backbone behind the hops.

T - Intense tropical fruit flavors from the hops, complimented by the fruity sweetness from the malt and yeast. Spicy hop notes surface in the middle and help to balance out the immense malt sweetness that imparts light grape notes and darker plum like sweetness. Strong, but not overwhelming, bitterness appears in the finish and darkens the character of the hops with notes of cedar and tobacco.

M - Thick body, medium-high carbonation, and a somewhat sweet finish.

D - A huge, yet quite drinkable beer. This is a very well balanced beer, which is quite a feat considering the huge loads of hop flavor and malt sweetness that had to be carefully kept in check. The flavor is wonderful, but the real star in the aroma which is nothing short of spectacular with an exceptional variety of hop aromas. Surprisingly, this beer more than lives up to the hype.

Photo of TehAnkh
4.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured in to an imperial pint glass. Poured a very orange tinged clear gold, almost yellow at the bottom, darker orange at the top.
1 1/2 fingers of pillowy white to off-white head that fades over the course of 3-4 minutes and leaves an absolutely gorgeous lacing that clings voraciously to the glass. The brew seems to go from clear to slightly pale as the head recedes. Gorgeous!!!

S: Grapefruit! That's the first thing that strikes my nose, citrus, citrus and more citrus. There's some grassy, herbal and floral notes in there for sure, but the citrus hop aroma reins supreme!

T: Once again, grapefruit right off the bat, but more of a clean lemon twinge in the background. I taste hints of honey and melon. Very floral, very aromatic , the flavor sticks with you well after the last sip. The alcohol only makes itself apparent in the belly, dangerously well hidden alcohol content.

M: Not nearly as bitter as I was expecting from a DIPA, but still enough to leave my tastebuds screaming. Medium bodied, albeit a little watery. A very very light amount of carbonation rounds it out and leaves me feeling refreshed.

D: If it wasn't for the alcohol content and the bitterness, I think I could sit down and drink 10 of these. The aroma and flavor are incredible, and completely new to me as a beer drinker. I will gladly crack open another... after about an hour. It's not nearly as bitter as you would think, but it's enough to make you think twice about having a second one too quickly.

Notes: I have to say I'm mildly disappointed regarding the price tag. If this were available more often, and at maybe 10-12 dollars for a 6-pack, I would drink it all the time. Sadly, this is not the case.

A rockin DIPA, but a little over hyped if you ask me.

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

12 oz into Nonic

A: light orange with full, fluffy offwhite head (1.5 fingers) with solid lacing

S: very sweet citrus, clementine orange, and very little alcohol given the ABV, smells smooth

T: breadiness and clean citrus hops that are suprisingly well balanced then a strong blast of warming alcohol.

M: Smooth but good carbonation. Fairly dry with lingering warmth from alcohol

D: this is excellent and makes for a nice treat on a cold winter day. The flavor of summer the warmth of a scotch(maybe not quite as much but you get the idea.)

Photo of natasharai
4.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: poured with 2cm off white slightly fluffy head, that dissipated to a thin layer within 3 minutes and left a little lacing. The beer is a hazy golden color.

Smell: Very strong smell of grapefruit and a scent of lemon and flowers.

Taste: Strong citrusy hops full of grapefruit. Some herbal bitterness is detectable and lemons. All followed by a barley backbone to balance out the hops. A nice slightly sweet taste is left in my mouth.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, very nice amount of carbonation, slightly oily... from the hops leaving a thing film in my mouth. Has a sharp bitterness tingle on the tip of the tongue.

Overall: Pretty east to drink, well balanced, but still far more hops than anything else going on in this beer. The alcohol taste not as detectable as you would think for 10% ABV... but you end up feeling it :)

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

Purchased at EV1 Liquors in Evanston. Poured from a 12oz bottle into an imperial pint glass. The batch number 8913 tells me that this was packaged on Jan 12th - pretty fresh.

A: Nice soft and creamy, yellowy orange one finger head. Amber color liquid with haziness. Some random carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass. Good head retention and great lacing.

S: Big bold hop of course but it is really really strong. The grapefruit is there but there is a more crisp lemon along with a sweeter melon and apple. Really lovely.

T: Much like the smell to my delight. You get the nice grapefruit which has a more lemony citrus bite but rather than the caramel malt inserting itself to balance it, the sweetness is reflected in a more honey dew melon type taste. Really delicious. The alcohol is a no show excpet for the warmth on your cheeks. I can't understand how you can't taste 10% - really well masked. The danger with this brew is that it is so delicious that you want to session it but you can't unless you are a hardened drinker. It's strong.

M: The overt syrupy nature of the liquid makes it feel the full side of medium. Smooth but then there is a crisp bitterness at the finish.

D: I can't drink one of these slowly. I wish there was a little bit less alcohol because you pay the price if you don't respect he potency of this brew. If you are addicted to hops, this is a beer you have to try. I'm in love with this beer. Must... get... more...

Photo of Bung
4.2/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle. A bright barely cloudy dark gold pour. Smallish white head. Very floral aroma, fresh hops with just a hint of honey and malt. Pretty straight forward very hoppy, but there is some sweet malt with the honey, and some citrus and apple. Finishes real clean, for those that like a hop belch, this will do it for you. Tastes like a really really good pale ale. I was expecting this to be just a bite in the rear bitter beer, but it was quite well balanced and dangerously drinkable. The most drinkable double I've had. Was not an earth shattering experience, but I'm glad I tried it. Not sure it was worth the 15 for the sixer, but hopefully I can trade some of this.

Photo of cbros
4/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving type- 12 ounce bottled poured into a Pisgah pint glass.

A- Pours a straw yellow with hints of an orange tint. Small white lace that stays present througout the beer. No activity present on beer after the pour.

S- Strong flavors of hops, also a pungent smell of citrus mainly grapefruit. These smells are very prevalent as you bring the beer up to your nose.

T- Beautiful combination of hops and citrus. The grapefruit comes back again as you begin your taste. This blends well with the hops and strong alcohol flavor. It finishes smooth and strong, you can taste the high ABV as the beer runs down your throat.

After reading everythiny about this beer, both positive and negative, I finally decided to break down and buy a six pack. This is a very good Imperial IPA and even though I am not sure it totally lived up to the hype this is still a very good beer. To me the price is not a huge factor, I have had other Imperial IPA's with a similar price tag and found them to be just as good, if not better. It was a pleasure to drink this beer and if the price was a little better I would certainly get this again, but I think I can get similar or better stuff for a little less price. Definatley a great beer but just a hair out of my price range, especially for a sixer. Added to the fact that this is a seasonal offering it makes it less tempting to send that money.

Photo of SerieDNo3
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams sensory glass

A: Pours a very hazy golden-orange with a finger and a half of fluffy white foam. Medium to heavy lacing on the glass.

S: Muted hop aromas with some honey-sweetness. Smells like candy made of hops.

T: The sweetness is rather pronounced here. The hop flavors are present in abundance, but with none of the bitterness I would expect from a DIPA. Tastes of honey and juniper.

M: Somewhat syrupy, with the right amount of carbonation. Could use some more in the way of bittering hops to enhance the crispness.

D: Hides the alcohol very well, and goes down very smoothly. Not as crisp as I normally like from a DIPA, but oddly enough, it works in this case. Probably the most easy drinking DIPA I have ever had. I feel like I could drink several of these before realizing the potentially ruinous effect of all the alcohol.

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

12oz bottle into nonic.

Clear honey amber hue with just a bit of haze. The head is light tan and slowly settles to a thin cap with bubbly islands. The head leaves behind a wall of webby lacing.

Very sweet aromas, including honey (probably from the honey). The hops give off an herbal aroma, along with some sharp spiciness.

Slightly toasty malts with plenty of citrusy and spicy hops. The honey is detectable and adds a bit of sweetness. The alcohol is very well hidden. The overall tone of the beer is very sweet. Full bodied.

It doesn't get more drinkable than this DIPA. The alcohol isn't even noticeable and the hops add some great flavor. This gets a great score because of its drinkability. It's a DIPA but it drinks like a regular Pale Ale. The mix of hop varieties along with the honey seem to match well. Recommended.

Photo of Azumel
4.44/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Well, this is my first beer review here, and an excellent one to start with. After reading everyone elses reviews I half expected to see God with my first drink...my first drink was lacking, but after I let it settle a bit it was, well, exceptional. I'm a big Bell's fan anyways, heavy hops usually don't do alot for me, but I did really love this beer...and for over $17 for the 6 pack I should...think the review taped to the door added a few dollars to the price.
Loved it? Yes
Best beer ever? No....but pretty damn good.
I'd suggest trying to find it somewhere and give it a try, I'm more of a stout person myself, but you can never go wrong with any of the Bell's selection.

Photo of icefisherman
4.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First one of the year as I snagged almost the last case the store had. Upon poping the bottle wow I mean holy hops. Citrusy delicious hops. On the poor nice head good lacing and a beautiful slightly hazy amber gold. Taste fully of hops what did one expect good malt presence can taste the honey in the middle. Great easy drinking beer somewhat different from what I remember last years as but stellar none the less.

Photo of cedricwarner
4.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I can smell 'em from across the table, those lovely hops. The aroma is rich, almost sexual, grapefruit and musk, honey sweetness. The taste is more of the same, but with the citrus bite really coming through on the front of the palate, and the honey notes lingering on. Lick your lips a couple of seconds after a sip, and I swear it's just like like you've been in the honey jar.

Good lord. I can't think of a more exceptional display of hops as the centerpiece of American craft brewing.

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

A - Pours a nice golden hue with an offwhite/light yellow head. If you look closely you can see traces of suspended yeast from being slightly unfiltered.

S - You couldn't get closer to a fresh hop smell if you were walking through a hop farm in Yakima, Washington at harvest time.

T- Now I fancy myself a Hop Head and wow does this satisfy my idea of a hoppy beer. It's almost as if you were biting into a fresh hop flower right off the plant and sucking out all the alpha acids. Surprisingly not as bitter as I thought though which just adds to the mind boggling concoction of this brew.

M/D - If it wasn't so expensive I would trade in my water filtration system and run this through every tap in my house. It's that easy to drink and addicting.

This was my first experience with Hopslam and I now understand the hype behind it....wow

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

This is my fifth go at this beer. Not in a row. But now I feel like I can review it.

Pours a brilliant orange with a big, healthy bone white head. Very pretty.

Aroma is a knockout. Grapefruit dominates, alcohol, raisin, pine resin and a warm, floral scent that I can't quite put my finger on. Like a wafting perfume from a passing woman.

Taste is a juicy, puckering alcoholic grapefruit. Juicy, juicy and juicy. Almost all hop flavors. Slam, indeed. A little sweet malt is in there, but it's hard to tell where the hop juice ends and the sweet malt begins. What a marvel.

Oily smooth mouthfeel, leaning toward full-bodied.

For me, it's too drinkable. One that can get me in trouble in a hurry. I tend to gulp this beer, despite my best efforts to relax. I've taken to following this one with several glasses of water.

Now, one other thing. The price. It is expensive, yes. It is good, yes. But, I have never tasted anythiing quite like it. So, if you want the experience, fork over the money.

Photo of robbyc1
4.13/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice head, very clear yellow, head leaves some lace but nothing special.

Wow, a grapefruit bomb! Nice hop nose, no sent of malt, but it must be there.

It tastes like a hop bomb, but the backbone malt holds it up. I still like the taste of Two Hearted better, but this is pretty well balanced.

Nice heaviness, good bitterness, and it's got nice carbonation.

Easy to drink despite the big hops, no real sign of the 10% abv, too easy to have.

Photo of schenked
4.9/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Poor Phil's in Oak Park. They served it in a Bell's-branded tulip glass.

Appearance - golden hue with not much of a head. great lacing.

Smell - floral, vanilla, citrus. it smelled exceptionally fresh.

Taste - Amazingly balanced. the 10% is very well hidden. Wonderful citrus hoppy character balanced out by the honey (I assume). Really complex.

Mouthfeel - medium body. just the right amount of carbonation.

Drinkability - incredibly smooth. Just a brilliant beer. I am so glad I got to get some on tap. I actually had some Dreadnaught along side the HopSlam, and the HopSlam blew it away (not that the Dreadnaught was not not excellent).

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

HopSlam lives up to it's hype. I picked up a 12-pack from Chicago's south-loop Binny's. The bottle says "brewed with honey" and the influence is noticeable....in a very good and balancing way...more on that below.

Appearance -
Medium head, dissipates to nothing, no lacing (kinda a bummer on the head/lacing). The color is a beautiful rich gold - almost brassy. Clear as a Bell.

Smell -
Immediate aroma of sweet malt and honey, followed by an onslaught of rich piney, resinous, hop smells. When I popped the bottle open, I paused briefly (since I was in mid conversation with someone about who knows what), and the aroma engulfed my head. Yum.

Taste -
So the taste was interesting, it wasn't a taste-bud-violating-hop-explosion, but more like a heavy weight of hops was dumped into my mouth. Lots of hop citrus and pine and resin. But also nicely balanced with sweet malt and honey.

Mouthfeel -
Very full and round mouthfeel, alcohol on the finish.

Drinkability -
Huge drinkability considering it's 10% and a hop-party.

Over all, this is some great stuff. Don't cellar this, be sure to drink it fresh. I'm not even through 1 of the 4 six-packs and I'm going to see if I can find some more before it sells out for another HopSlam season.

Photo of jwinship83
4.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A- classic burnt orange IPA color with a solid finger of off white head. Very nice lacing left on the sides of the glass. Small bubbles of carbonation can be seen rushing to the top of the glass.

S- caramel malts with lots and lots of piny and citrusy hops.

T- very sweet upfront with a wonderfully bitter hop finish.

M- remarkably smooth. Light to medium mouthfeel with sufficient carbonation.

D- too bad this beer is 10%, because it's taste and smoothness makes this one id love to be able to drink all night. That's really the only thing bad I have to say about this. It's a wonderful DIPA that ill be sad to see go. Make this a year round beer please bells!

Photo of sudsface69
4.6/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an amazing beer. A truly distinctive and memorable beer. My first sniff of this one will be forever etched in my mind. I don't think I have ever smelled such a wonderfully fruity, floral, tropical nose in a beer before. The character of the hop aroma in this is simply amazing. This beer truly has a "bouquet." The mouthfeel is big, full, and totally satiating. The expressions of the hops are just fascinating. So complex, so intriguing. If you are a hop head, you need to try this beer. One of the finest DIPAs you will find anywhere.

Photo of guild337
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. I expected a big, in your face, strong IPA when I purchased this beer...which I would have enjoyed thoroughly. This was something altogether different and amazing. I have been a huge DFH 90 minute fan for a long time, and it has been my IPA go to. This has just beat the 90 unmercifully out of first position.

A - Nice frothy, yet quickly dissipating head. Deep golden, and nicely cloudy (unfiltered) color and consistency.

S - Holy nose full of flowers! This brew smells so lovely, and sweet. The full hops smell, matched with the honey is quite a unique aromatic experience.

T - Amazing flavors abound in this brew. I have not the vocabulary nor the palate to describe everything I am tasting, but I can assure you that all of them are delicious. Hoppiness that could so easily be bitter, but that trails off into subtle sweetness of the honey. This beer is perfectly balanced.

M - There is certainly some texture to this brew. I can't imagine what the IBU count is, but you can feel it. But still so enjoyable.

D - Not for the newbie, but so enjoyable...I think I'll have another right now. That makes it pretty drinkable...no?

Photo of WilliamD
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I love good, strong IPAs. When it comes to a good imperial IPA and a good imperial stout, I'm torn. This beer makes a darn good tug in the direction of the IPAs, that's for sure.
Looks great, pouring a light, clear orange with a fizzy head that diminished within one minute. Little bubbles continually cascade upwards. My BB is moving upwards as well.
Smells wonderful, like pineapple and pine trees, and at this point I truly begin to pine for this revered IPA.
Taste is delicious- you know you're drinking a real IPA, trust me. Nice pine flavor, right shade of bitterness, and that good old complex flavor that's great to note when you're tasting something great but you can't explain exactly why. This is a GD stellar beer, GD it.
What a good mouthfeel, whatever that is.
Like many before me have noted, what a drinkable beer for a 10% ABV. Again, I'm torn because I want to drink alot of it because it tastes so good but I dodn't want to have a raging headache at work tomorrow.

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

Batch 8908. Poured a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a golden copper with medium/heavy carbonation and an off white fluffy head. Smells of citrusy goodness. Lots of fruity hops. It also has a very unique nose-stinging chemical like hop aroma that hits me as pull the beer away from my nose. Maybe it's the dankness of the hops coming through. Whatever this smell is, the other DIPAs I've tried don't have it. The taste is like putting marijuana and citrus fruits together in a blender and serving it as a drink. The dankness of the beer is very pronounced. It definitely has a good deal of malts too and balances well. After my first sip my saliva became much more viscous due to the balancing malts. Mild/medium bittering aftertaste. Mouth feel is medium light with just the right amount of carbonation. Drinkablity is remarkable for a 10% ABV beer. This would absolutely be in my IPA rotation if I could get this year-round.

Photo of farrago
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Super whipped-up, agitated head of white froth, very sticky lacing. Brightly hued orange to yellow throughout, not fully transparent but clean and quite pretty. The nose is a citrus fest of pink grapefruit, tangerine, lime, if you can adjust to this you might be able to tease out pine resin, rose hips, nectarine, papaya and pineapple fruit scents, not much discernible malt-wise but doesn't feel out of balance, very credible lift in the nostrils. Medium-bodied, isn't bitter at all, more stings or pinches the palate than bites it. Same gargantuan element of pink grapefruit, tangelo, lime citrus, equally sweet and sour. The floral dimension a touch stronger, aided by the honey accents. On the other hand, any pine or charcoal flavors step back. Texturally, it's crisp and lively and built for speed, glides down the chute. No grassy nor herbaceous pucker, the hops taste fresh like you could wring them out with your hands. Carbonation shows a gentle but persistent hand. Real fun to throw back.

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

I love the hops and when I tied this beer my taste buds said HOLY CRAP!! The aroma when I opened it was a lot like grapefruit and hops. Then I poured it to see an orange haze which I expected more golden. I also expected to see the nice head but it teneded to recede quicker then expected. A nice semi-crisp medium bodied with a bit of oiliness resin. I expected a major bitterness but was surprised on how smooth it was for having so much hops. Don't get me wrong this is a very hoppy beer that made me pucker up like most IPAs and DIPAs. However it is still pretty smooth especially for having a 10% abv. Very well balanced and surprising smoother then expected. This is definitely one hellava great IPA. Thank you Bells!!

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