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Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,297 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,297
Hads: 11,916
Avg: 4.44
pDev: 18.02%
Wants: 2,582
Gots: 2,849 | FT: 57
Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States | website

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

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beernbbq on 04-14-2004

Starting with six different hop varietals added to the brew kettle & culminating with a massive dry-hop addition of Simcoe hops, Bell's Hopslam Ale possesses the most complex hopping schedule in the Bell's repertoire. Selected specifically because of their aromatic qualities, these Pacific Northwest varieties contribute a pungent blend of grapefruit, stone fruit, and floral notes. A generous malt bill and a solid dollop of honey provide just enough body to keep the balance in check, resulting in a remarkably drinkable rendition of the Double India Pale Ale style.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 3,297 | Hads: 11,916
Photo of jonesy77
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had a Hopslam on tap last night at Churchkey in Washington D.C. and am currently enjoying a bottle now, bought today at my local Whole Foods.

A: Very nice! The Hopslam has a nice golden color to it. On draft it appeared to be a bit more hazy than out of the bottle.

S: Strong citrus/grapefruit aromas. The draft version smelled a little bit more piney to me. I can definitely detect the presence of honey.

T: A true hopbomb, yet very smooth and balanced. Nice citrus and some tropical flavors. Draft was a little more "hoppy."

MF: A little bit resiny, nice levels of carbonation.

D: What else can I say, it is Hopslam...Never know it was 10% abv, I could definitely sit here and drink a few of them, yet I want to savor these. One of the smoothest DIPAs out there and I agree with previous reviewer that this is one of the best years I can remember.

Serving type: on tap and bottle

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Photo of pearljam118
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is most likely my favorite beer. I have a case and have had it on tap 3 separate times this year so I think my review is well rounded.

A - hazy, golden yellow orange

S - Fruity, tons of pineapple. If I could give this 6 I would have

T - pineapple, very hoppy but not overkill. The 10% is hidden very very well. This beer is a perfect balance of fruitiness, hops and carbonation.

M - Sticky hops coat your mouth with a good bit of carbonation

Overall - The perfect non-west coast DIPA. Since this beer is highly hyped and reasonably available there is plenty of skeptics. But this beer doesn't let down.

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Photo of chopp02
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

If you are an IPA lover or Hops lover in general, this beer is an absolute MUST HAVE. I love IPA's and Hoppy beers in general and this one is the strongest I've ever had in that regard. But what makes this beer a 5 out of 5 for me is the addition of the honey flavor ... It is the icing on the cake and it's what really makes this beer DELICIOUS!

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Photo of TheDole
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I honestly dont think Ive had the privilege of enjoying a beer such as this since I lived in Brussels for a year and trekked out to Westvleteren Abbey to enjoy their beers on tap.
As far as a brew I can have in the states, this is it. Read other people's reviews if you want a detailed breakdown but this is truly a treat if you can find it.
YES it is expensive 16-20 a 6 pack. @ 10% alcohol and the malt to mask it, youll understand why.

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Photo of xav33
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bell's Hopslam
12 oz bottle
Packaged 10/06, slammed down 11/06
Medium pour in a tulip glass.

Poured hazy amber with a large frothy somewhat lasting (thanks in part to a constant flow of myriad tiny bubbles) slightly off white head,with a think ring of lacing. Yeast suspends beautifully like Aurora Borealis.

Smelt strongly of grapefruit, spruce, with moderate pepper, barnyard,

Taste was upfront strong bitter ruby red grapefruit followed by a strong piny earthy bitterness on a never-ending finish. If you wait it out it turns grassy, then flowery. Palate was medium bodied, silky smooth and cream, softly carbonated, moderately astringent and light alcoholic warmth.

Overall, everything is amazing about this beer, except maybe the flavor profile. It was so smooth and tasty for its strength it left me wondering where the complexity and promise for cellaring was. Also slightly tasted like pellet hops or hop concentrate, if there is such a thing. I want to love this more but it's daftly simple for a double IPA and too perfectly balanced when young. I'm torn and confused, intrigued and mesmerized. Damn you Larry Bell, I finally have a double IPA crack my top tier. Excellent work for now, but lets see what you can do for me down the road for the next 5 years. Off to the oubliettes you go, Hopslam.

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Photo of OneBeertoRTA
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've heard the hype and made a conscious effort to procure some this season.

Scored a couple six packs at the Binny's right when the opened on release day.

The bottle pours a rich amber (honey) color with ample carbonation. The aroma is hops hops and more hops.

Upon first taste the hops hit you in taste and smell but the subtle honey is noticeable throughout. One of my buddy's trying one also for the first time said the honey really stood out although I found it subtle.

The fact this beer is "supposedly" 10% is mind boggling. This is really a masterpiece. I want this all the time.

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Photo of SteveGNC
5/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I probably can't add anything useful to what has already been written about this outstanding beer, but here goes. Pours a beautiful golden color with nice head and great lacing on the glass. The aroma is exceptional- very fruity, notes of peaches and of course hops. The taste is unbelievable. Without a doubt the most well balanced double IPA there is. Just the right amount of sweetness to offset the bitterness of the hops. I know this is an overly hyped beer, but in this case the accolades are true. If (god forbid) I could only drink one beer for the rest of my life, this would undoubtedly be my choice.

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Photo of PhillyStyle
4.99/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From a bottle ($9) at Holman & Finch, Atlanta, into a snifter, bottled on 1/15/2013:

First time that I have had this beer since probably 2009. The beer was a very nice, clear dark copper that produced a very nice white head that was well retained and faded into a thin cap that lasted throughout the beer. The aroma is very nice...actually more balanced than I remember, but still more hoppy, citrus and pine, but a very full and powerful aroma. The taste is what every DIPA/Imperial IPA should strive to be. Most are so overpowering hoppy that I sometimes regret getting them...but not this one, again, like the nose, pretty well balanced, but with an edge to the hops, but with more citrus up front and pine in the back and the malts just making it as smooth as it could be. The feel of the beer was also very good. The beer was clean, crisp, refreshing and very fresh. The alcohol was not noticeable at all and I probably would have had a few if not for the price. Overall, a world-class beer. Nothing more needs to be said.

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Photo of Bitter_Echo
4.99/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Low and fading head, moderate lacing, scent of hops present, with a strong organic chemistry lab/pine campground presence, not really strong citrus to dominate. Color is a rich, slightly fogging copper orange typical for the style. Tastes fruity, malty, slightly sweet with strong, sustained hop echo, but nicely counterbalanced by all the flavors. Some presence of alcohol evident, but not really prominent...a bit more drinkable (going faster) than other DIPA's. Mouthfeel is substantial, with moderate to heavy, active carbonation. Another delicious one from Bell's and recommended again.

Revised, fresher review: OK, so I'm trying an eight day old Hopslam, and I've changed my mind. I wish I could have one of these every day. Now I get even more fruit, passionfruit, and maybe even guava, and I can't believe this is 10% ABV. So a I go from a previous 4.75 to a almost 5.00. This one is near perfect for me.

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Photo of cr0ckett
4.99/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle poured into snifter; packaged 12.29.2010

A: Hazy amber with a two finger off white head that dissipates in a few minutes. Awesome lacing leaves a film every time you take sip. For comparison, looks almost exactly like Pliny the Elder, which I had earlier tonight. However, Hopslam is a bit hazy, has slightly better head retention, and has much better lacing than PtE.
S: Pine, resin and a small hint of honey.
T: A balance of citrus and pine hops hit right away and stay throughout. One of the best parts about this beer is the subtle sweetness of honey that comes at the end. It's subtle, but its just enough to counteract the heavy hops a little bit.
M: Smooth, medium body with perfect carbonation to compliment.
O: An exceptional hop heavy DIPA with a unique balance of honey sweetness; my favorite DIPA.

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Photo of Stjimmy10_1
4.99/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was very skeptical if this beer was worth the price. I've gotten 12 dollar 4 packs before but a 25$ six pack seemed outrageous. I was wrong. I wish I would have bought a case.

It's smooth sweet and bitter. Very well balanced and the honey notes add so much to the overall experience. I was worried that at 10 abv there would be a harsher bite/warmth that I've wasn't a fan of with some other IPA's like Stones Enjoy By double IPA but that wasn't the case. I wish they brewed this year round.

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Photo of jam12011986
4.99/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just in general summed up this beer reminds me of Jim Carrey in Bruce Almighty when he becomes god for 7 days. Bell's Hopslam is one of the most well rounded beers I have had in quite a while. Its very easy to sum up in word AMAZING!! for the everyday IPA drinker!

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Photo of Roman5150
4.98/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Bottle into pint glass, about 5 months old at time of review

Appearance: beautiful orange amber with 1 finger white head

Smell: heavy grapefruit, citrus, honey, simcoe hops, coriander, grape, apple, lemon,

Taste: follows the nose, huge simcoe grapefruit/tropical citrus notes, earthy hops, probably the smoothest double ipa ive ever had, honey, lemon, end is so refreshingly smooth this is a world glass beer that ANYONE would love. Absolutely no taste of alcohol, and it's a 10% abv. Even 5 months old from te bottle it tastes like it did on tap in January.

Mouthfeel: perfect amount of carbonation, not too full

Overall: My favorite beer of all time, narrowly edging Bells other staple, Two-Hearted. God damn, theres something about this beer that no other DIPA can touch. I think what sets it apart is the addition of honey, which creates a smoothness that rounds out the bitterness to a point where words cant describe how amazing this beer is. Good luck finding it, this sells fast everywhere, and its obvious why. The best DIPA i've ever had, no contest.

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Photo of TonyLuvsBeer
4.98/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

One of my favorite beers. Bottled in Jan 2015. Aroma is wonderful in those beer picking up the hints of honey. The aroma is outdone w/the taste though. This is such a smooth beer with the infused honey. This is also a potent beer at 10% ABV. I drink a couple of these and I'm feeling good :)

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Photo of WeymouthMike
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Cloudy amber with minimal head which disappears quickly leaving a minor lace around the edges.

S- Sweet citrus with piney hops

T- Holy sh!t this is what I want in a DIPA, hops that tear my tastebuds out and body slam them. Its been a while since I've had an IPA that could do that, thought I had grown some sort of tolerance, guess thats not so.

M- Oily with almost no carbonation.

D- I could make this my everyday beer, but I might be limited to 2. Really this is an amazing beer which I wish was available in my area.

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Photo of jbphoto88
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a wide mouth mug to maximize the scent. Appearance is a nice honey color with a soft head that fades quickly leaving some delicate lacing on the edge of the glass.

The smell to me is nothing short of exceptional. It is of sweet citrus grapefruits, glorious hops and even a little honey. The honey might be all in my head because I accidently read on the bottle that it is ale with honey. Once seen its hard for me to not think about it.

Taste is amazing. It starts out like the best grapefruit I've ever had and quickly moves into lovely malts and a super hop finish. A nice above average bitterness that totally makes this beer. Mouthfeel is a smooth and silky with that honey rearing its head again. Tastes like there is just enough to smooth out the bitterness in from the hops. I can compare it to grandma adding some sugar to her spaghetti sauce thus cutting the bitterness.

This is now my new favorite beer. So sad I only have three from a trade and none to buy. They will not last long in this house.

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Photo of Maxxthepenguin
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hopslam, concocted by god, put in six packs by the devil. This is no ordinary beer, this isn't even an ordinary DIPA. Utterly extraordinary in every way, Hopslam is legendary in its ability to floor even the most able beer drinkers. The secret is its ability to combine the purest, most potent hop flavor with an exceptional drinkability. Each Hopslam you drink goes down smooth as silk while tasting like a godly nectar, but once your glass is empty (which happens far too quickly), you yearn for another. No other brew makes it so hard to stop while being so incredibly potent, at 10%. Deadlier than the jungle juice at a frat party, the love this drink instills must be balanced by respect for what it can do, or you'll end up drinking four before you know it, leaving you in quite a state of inebriation that you never planned for. Seek hopslam out while you can, but don't approach lightly. You will not be the same after you drink it, and the yearlong wait for another batch has destroyed stronger men than myself.

A: Exactly what a DIPA should look like: golden with a finger of head.
S: A glorious bouquet of hops, with highlights of grapefruit and a strong punch of tropical fruit and orange.
T: Absolutely incredible. The hops in the nose appear in the taste and come together with a sweetness that really ties this beer together. Never approaching cloying, the sweetness helps balance the bitterness of the hops without lessening the impact of the hop flavor. The orange flavor of this year's batch is truly remarkable, nowhere else have I found a beer that has such distinct orange notes.
M: Coats your mouth with oily goodness, but still goes down smooth as silk. A marvelous mouthfeel.
D: Beyond comprehension for a 10% beer. You can tell the 10% is there, but it never gets in the way of easy drinking.

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Photo of cokes
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

De-bottles a lightly smoky golden amber stacked with a wet and sticky mess of ivory suds.
Octopus tentacles of gooey, pink grapefruit and apricots writhe their way up the nose and slap a suction cup right on the pleasure receptor. There are backing pine resin, ganja, and metallic grassy hop traits. But purely and simply, this is loud hop fruit-juice, and beyond delicious. I can think of more complex smelling beers, but not a better smelling one.
Malt is laid down first inside the mouth with honey and graham crackers and pear jelly. That's all quickly dismantled as a twinge of vanilla precedes a sticky hop bath. All those apricot and pink grapefruit juices form the nose follow-through tastewise. But here, larger roles are given to the smoky rasta vapors, pine tar, lime peels, quinine, and juniper. These last things mingle with a partially cloaked ABV to give it a decided gin and tonic impression on the swallow. But those juicy fruited hops still linger over everything, and will for quite some time.
Oily bodied but its heft is masked with a persistent trickling CO2. It's also worth noting the this is the least yeasty Bells I can recall, and that's a good thing, especially here. This is simply gulpable, and I have had to slow myself down every single time I've drank it.
It's almost straightforward and simple in a way, but when everything is this right, I can't see how a Double IPA could get any better.

Note as of 5/9/08: Get this as fresh as you possibly can. There is some notable atrophy in the hop zestiness even after 3 -4 months. It's still a killer, but it has fallen off a step.

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Photo of poland7
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is amazing. Anyone who loves hops, IPA's, and good beer will love this beer.

Once you crack open the bottle your nose is bombarded with the fantastic smell of hops. At first you may think this beer is too much, and as a hop head i will say i was intimidated for a second, but i just manned up and took a swig and feel in love. The beer is very rich in taste, and the hops are excellently complimented by a dash of honey which makes the beer a perfect blend of sweet and bitter at the same time.

I know it is expensive, but trust me it is worth every drop and you will wish you could drink this beer everyday. For a hop head there is nothing better.

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Photo of jp62099
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to my buddy David for providing me with this bottle brought down from NC. One of those beers that is definately a transending experience. The smell is a mix of citrus, but not overwelming like some DIPAs. The taste is one of the most balanced I have ever had, of course it is very hoppy, but so smooth. The transition from one complex flavor to another is seamless, with not one element overpowering another. The alc is so hidden, you could definately get in trouble if you had a few.
I have only one problem with this beer, and that is that it is not available here yet.

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Photo of beveritt
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into an Imperial Pint glass. Label depicts legs and arms sticking out from underneath a large hop flower. Batch #8907, brewed on January 6, 2009 and sampled 10 days later.

Appearance: Pours with 1 1/2 fingers of nearly white head. Settles slowly into a very dense foam. Medium amount of lacing. Beer itself is golden with occasional bubble of activity. No sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Overwhelming floral hops with honey sweetness in the finish. More flower like than the traditional citrus or pine aromas from most dry-hopping.

Taste: Mouthfilling floral hops which fades almost imperceptibility into a strong hop bitterness. The full progression of hop flavors, from dry hopping ,through flavor hops, to the bitterness of isomerized humulone.

Mouthfeel: Average carbonation level. Body is great.

Drinkability: Awesome. Unlike any other IIPA/DIPA I have ever had. A truly unique experience.

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Photo of JohnL9013
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had this beer on tap and I don't know what else to say other than I think that this is one of the best IPA's ever made. I reviewed this as a bottle but honestly that didn't prepare me for how much better it was on tap.

A: Golden, perfect, foamy head. Lots of lacing.

S: Amazing bouquet of hops, with a slight sweet smell.

T: Best I've ever had, bar none. There is no other DIPA that tastes anywhere near as balanced as this one. It is literally the perfect combination of all those great IPA flavors we know and love - bitter, grapefruit, sweet, sour, flowerey. As far as flavor, I'm sure the famous Stone Ruination would overpower this beer in terms of sheer hop content and power, but I would literally take this any day over the ruination. It is lacking absolutely nothing.

M: Low carbonation = smooth, smooth mouthfeel. There is literally nothing offensive in here. If you wanted to, you could straight up chug this, as it literally has no indication that it actually contains any alcohol, but with a nice mouthfeel like this, you'll want to swirl it around and let it warm up and enjoy every single drop.

This is the highest review I have ever given any beer, but it is deserved, in my opinion.

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Photo of jsh420
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

batch 9470

pours bright gold with a huge 2+ finger head that covered the glass with lacing

smell - once i carcked the cap i could smell this brew - huge pineapple grapefruit hops

taste is much of the same powerful citrus fruits pineapple orange grapefruit upfront and with just enough nice honey sweet malt finish

mouthfeel is full bodied - juicy resin from those hops stick to your mouth a bit - but there is jsut the right amount of carbonation to give it some bite a crisp yet smooth finish

drinkability - this beer makes you want to drink all that you can get your hands on but watch out it is 10%abv

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Photo of BeerGodz
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On Tap @ The POPE

Look: Golden amber, clear, with a a medium head and decent lacing (perhaps it was the glass?)

Smell: Massive citrus hop aroma! Malt and a slight amount of honey also present

Taste: Up Front: Sweet malt and hops do battle, grapefruit, apricot. Finish: Honey, with malt and hops still duking it out

Mouthfeel: Medium body, incredibly smooth and balanced!

Drinkability: Alcohol is well hidden, uber-drinkable, but watch out, it's a shit kicker!

Overall Impression: I started and ended my session with the mighty HopSlam. This is the best Double IPA I've had to date! That may not last though, because Pliny the Elder and Pliny the Younger are coming to Philly on March 1. (Edit: as it turns out, I actually preferred Hopslam to Younger, making this the 2nd best Double IPA, second only to Elder)

This beer reminds me of Boulder's Mojo in that it has honey and apricot flavors in addition to the typical grapefruit. Of course it's much higher octane, and the flavors are significantly more intense. Truly Nectar of the Godz!

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Photo of syrupjoe
4.97/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle into Swag Brewery pint glass. Pours a deep honey golden color with creamy 1.5 finger almost white head.

Nose: Sweet juicy orange, mango, pineapple, pine and hop zip.

Taste: Tropical fruit, honey, marmalade, citric tang, resinous pine, overall incredibly potent and well-rounded hop blast.

Crisp, clean, finish considering the stature of this beer. Slight lingering bitterness and sweetness but it's plenty expected and perfectly managed. Overall this is a superb specimen of an overly hopped but perfectly balanced alpha acid bombs. Will continue drinking and pursuing this one indefinitely.

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Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
98 out of 100 based on 3,297 ratings.