Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

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3,258 Reviews

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Reviews: 3,258
Hads: 11,633
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.54%
Wants: 2,391
Gots: 2,631 | FT: 62
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:
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: 3,258 | Hads: 11,633
Photo of HopHead84
4.35/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice 1.5 finger head with nice retention with substantial lacing. The beer looks like some sort of golden honey.

S: Sweet citrus (grapefruit), very floral, honey, nicely hopped,

T: Nice and bitter up front with a small malt backbone. A citrus tang toward the back of the tongue and a slightly dry finish.

M: Carbonation is good and the mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.

D: 10% ? I never would have guessed it. I could drink this all night. (452 characters)

Photo of DontCallMeSurly
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass with about a half inch of head.

The appearance is of a golden-amber. Looks delicious.

The scent of the beer is amazing. Lots of citrus and even some floral hops. I also detect quite a bit of spice. My mouth is watering just smelling this! The taste is wonderful; the malts are more upfront than I remember, not that it's a bad thing, but I distinctly remember the hops being the focus on the last one I had. My palate could be messed up so who knows. Had it not have been for the 10% ABV I could drink this beer all night. Instead I suppose I'll just have to pace myself a little better! (626 characters)

Photo of ralflord
4.03/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured golden amber into a Unibroue tulip. Looked delicious.
Smell - Hoppy with a sweet scent

Taste - Bitter hop flavor (obvious), with a some sweet accents. Honey is prevelant but does't overpower the beer. Nice balance.

Mouthfeel - Right amount of carbonation. Feel was crisp.

Drinkability - Overall good. IIPA not my favorite style, not use to the hoppy flavor, but this beer was tasty and makes me want to keep drink it to get use to the style. (451 characters)

Photo of bgramer
4.35/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to readicculus for the trade!

Poured into a Duvel oversized tulip glass. Wow - huge carbonation - powerful, three fingers thick, dissipates eventually revealing a great amber-like color.

Very aromatic! It's very citrus-like and i smell faint honey. It's hugely floral and hoppy - so sweet and the body has good balance - mouthfeel isn't overpowering yet full, and the finish is dry and bitter.

This is a VERY drinkable beer. If it wasn't for the high ABV, I'd dare say this should be a session beer. If you asked me to compare this to Dreadnaught, I'd say this one ekes it out by a nose because of it's finish and smaller bottle size. (646 characters)

Photo of Philabeerphia
4.62/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From Notes:
on tap at Eulogy - "Leftover" from Sat. night w/ Larry Bell.
Poured into a 5lb chalice. Glad I made it in for a Monday tasting in this nutty place.

APPEARANCE>During pour this quickly achieved a 2 finger head, puffy soft and creamy white, slowly and steadily dissipated into a dense sliver of a cap on the beer below. Medium lacing that lasts only for seconds...The beer in the low light of the bar appeared very cloudy, full of particulates, organic, golden and copper. Looks good.
SMELL> vanilla, milk, deep heavy floral notes, lightens a bit into melon> cantaloupe, keeps going into pine and cannabis as the hoppy undertone begins to shine with warmth...
TASTE> up front bananas and melon backed by the candy caramel malt. Very surprised at this. This is warm and 'easy' on the palette. More intense in the middle and back, sweet pine, fresh grass & greens, now its bitter pine, pockets of growing bittery intensity, resiney and becoming somewhat intense bitterness that hurts the throat and hangs in thick drips.
MOUTHFEEL> Just enough carbonation to lighten up the creamy and buttery MF. diacetyl qualities, gliding down the throat. Never do I pucker from this (good/bad?).
DRINKABILITY> Not an monstrous hop bomb, but one of the more extreme beers I've tasted nonetheless. warm and 'exotic'. This comes as close to a 'session' DIPA I've ever tasted, never a hint of alcohol comes through. Right up my alley, this is creme de la creme. (1,471 characters)

Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.52/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 version (10% ABV) Pours a golden bronze with a thick, creamy two and a half finger head. Dull clarity with excellent retention and spectacular spiderweb lacing. The nose is truly amazing- heavy pine needle scent with robust tangerine/mango tropical hop oil aroma, some orange and grapefruit rind in the background; and a soild caramel malt backing. There is another sweet aroma here I could not place, but when I noticed that the label says it is brewed with honey, I found that to be a likely culprit. The first sip reveals the honey further- like clover with a touch of orange blossom- the malt tastes like a medium roast crystal with some two-row thrown in for good measure. Thankfully, the sweetness carries over into the aftertaste and attempts some kind of balance. The first wave of hop flavor is a pungent mix of pine sap-tangy ripe fruit; followed by fresh cut grass and oranges, and finally grapefruit and resinous earthy hop oils and cling to the tounge but in a very soft- low cohumulone sort of way. This beer is bursting with both malt and hop flavor- especially american "C" varieties like Cascade, Chinook, Columbus and Centennial; yet is does not overwhelm the taste buds with boistrious alpha acids or astringent bitterness like some other hop bombs. This beer presents a unique and charismatic malt profile set against a showcase of west coast hop volatiles. The body is full and the carbonation light- just enough to prevent cloying and lift some of the more stubborn hop residues. It finishes flashy and saturated with the taste of fresh hop cones dipped in honey and copper-colored malt. The flavor is balanced enough to achive a good drinkability despite the heavy mouthfeel and lingering flavors. This limited availability seasonal is elite amongst it's D.I.P.A. bretheren, but still not worth the $16.00 a six pack price tag- hop crisis be damned. (1,877 characters)

Photo of drumrboy22
4.32/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to EliteDigger for this tasty brew. This has been on my radar for a while. Poured from a 120z. bottle into a Dogfish Head snifter. Beer pours an orange, copper color with a small white, bubbly head. Very soft carbonation and moderate lacing around the glass.

Aroma is pretty sweet for a DIPA, but also immense floral and citrus hops. Traces of honey are hidden in the background.

Taste starts out with a big, bitter hop bite, moves to a sweet malt, lemon and honey flavor and finally leaves you with a long, bitter and citrus finish. Quite nice and complex.

Mouthfeel is thick and oily. This is probably an easy drinker for most hopheads. Maybe too easy, considering it weighs in at 10%. Check this one out. It's another winner from Bell's. (750 characters)

Photo of jeremy13586
4.12/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just cracked open this bottle that has been sitting in the back of my fridge for the past week and a half. Pours a reddish-gold with a nice frothy head that dissolved and left a nice layer of bubbles on the top. I'm sitting about 2 feet away from the beer, looking at its color and I can already smell the pungent hops. Nice and floral in the nose with a grapefruity tint. Bring your nose closer to the beer and you can smell the bitterness.
The first sip starts out very sweet, but then your tounge gets attacked by the amazing hoppiness of the beer. The tounge is then cleansed and warmed with the 9.3% abv of the beer.
It is a bit heavier than I thought it would be, and I could have gone for some more carbination. Other than that, it was a very solid brew. (761 characters)

Photo of johnnyirishman
4.25/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle.

A- Cloudy golden color with some sediment at the bottom of the bottle. Minimal lacing and head retention.

S- Hops smell with a predominant honey smell.

T,M- Sweet honey/hops flavor with a clean finish. Medium body and medium carbonation.

D- This beer definately has a "drink me" factor going on. Very enjoyable. (342 characters)

Photo of sublimesipping
4.84/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

can you say slow and reflective? say it s l o w and then s l o w it down some more... this is the equivilant of hopped wine. the hoppiet barley wine I have ever tasted. And the taste! and the smell! strong resins predominate, a lemony piney, citrusy balm that lingers in the nose and contributes to a most amazing taste. You are drinking a wonderfully balanced but strong, nuanced but powerful beer. One of the best beers that I have had so far in 2008. Wonderful. Don't drink it all night unless you can nurse a bottle for several hours. given the complexity of this beer, that is indeed possible. Savor a sublime, deep taste sensation. (637 characters)

Photo of kkipple
4.16/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A. Clear, still orange with a fat 3 finger head that fades over time. No lacing, decent retention.

S. Big grapefruit and piney hops, then sweet malt and the advertised honey, clean, some oranges and flowers. Mostly just hop juice. Citrus and pure. If you like hops, you'll love this.

T. A fine blend of citrusy hops and sweet lightly toasted grain, with an orangey, alcoholic dry finish and some sappy, sticky pine notes. Hopslam is quite basic, simply variations on hops and grain sugars, but is wonderfully balanced and tasty. Think a less aggressive Double Dog or a hoppier, less sweet 90 minute and you're getting there.

M. Decent carbonation, finish is bitter and hoppy with an eventual sweet note. Alcohol is warming and certainly seems like the proclaimed 10%.

Hopslam is good, and drinkable, but ultimately doesn't bring a lot new to the table. It's simply a good Double IPA; but there's nothing wrong with that, either. Recommended for those with a hop-tooth. (972 characters)

Photo of jpinkard
4.7/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer in Ann Arbor last year, quite pricey buying a six pack but found it on tap in the U.P for two dollars a pint...rough night needless to say

Appearance: Nice deep copper, good amount of head that quickly went away

Smell: Well, hoppy, quite citrusy and strong. I was drinking with some friends and the lady next to me said thats a hopslam eh? Just by the smell, quite potent

Taste: The taste is really amazing, citrusy at first and surprisingly smooth. For the amount of hops not much of an after taste you would think that would come along with it.

Mouthfeel: Again suprisingly smooth, almost thick mouth feel, goes down great for a 10% abv...unfortunatly

Drinkability: Well, two or three pints of this will get you where you need to be really fast, I would start with one then move on to something a little less intense on the Abv...all around excellent beers. Without a doubt one of my favorites. (915 characters)

Photo of Hophead101
4.19/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Decided to try this beer while watching Big Brother 9. Wife is in bed - kids are asleep. my time now.

Bells, another favorite of mine. poured into a chalice glass - let it sit for 10 minutes or so to warm from fridge temperature.

appearance: nice hazy copper color. intial head was nice, but dissipated very quickly

smell: not at all what i expected. a very pleasant surprise. very strong honey and citrus smell - maybe even a little vanilla in there? a truly unique blend blend of flavors into a very appealing aroma and smell. one of the best smelling beers i have had in quite some time.

taste: great taste as well. the aroma and taste go hand in hand. what you smell is what you taste. soft on the pallate, strong on taste. flavor dissipates very quickly. a general wow, what a great beer.

mouthfeel: just a good overall beer. not too harsh or strong, massive flavor, but not a massive pallate drowner - they did a nice job with this one.

drinkability: not sure. the strong and unique flavoralmsot make it tough to drink a large or mulitple amount.

this is a fantastic beer. something i will go out and buy a case of. highly recommend. (1,149 characters)

Photo of DrDogbeer
4.44/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Sephiroth for this gem! Pours a fairly clear orange color with a timy white head. It leaves slight lacing down the glass. This IMO (along with NN) has the best aroma of any beer I have ever tried. Huge amounts of floral and citrus hops invade upon my first and every sniff. Massive citrus hop flavor, but not a typical hop monster- this fades as it gets balanced with the honey flavor. Very drinkable medium bodied beer for 10%! Can't wait for more!! (460 characters)

Photo of Gruntlumber
4.77/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer is fantastic!

I was expecting a typical hop bomb, which is still a good thing, but this is different. The hoppiness is definitely there but mellowed out somewhat by the honey, making it the most drinkable beer I've ever had at 10% abv. I can't buy it locally and I'm wishing I had more. Phenomenal. (309 characters)

Photo of Shango4232
4.44/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At first pour the beer is deep amber in color. Mine was slightly cloudy to which looked to me like "chill haze." Not a lot of head but then the hops hit you in the nose. They are overwhelming and awesome. At first taste there is some sweetness up front but it's quickly swallowed up by the hops, woody at first but then a citrus/grapefruit after taste.

If this beer wasn't 10% alcohol I could drink it all day. (411 characters)

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

A light to medium amber colored body with a small off white head. Leaves some lacing along the glass.

Great smell. A full nose of floral and fruity hops, some slight sweet-fruit aroma in there too.

Up front a lot of hop sweetness that reminds me of citrus fruit; it has the hop flavors without a lot of bitterness. Some malt undertones are noticeable too, providing just a touch of balance to the sweetness. Next I notice some floral flavors that are probably from the honey. The honey doesn't add any sweetness (does it ever?), but it is still noticeable. Finishes with more hops and some dryness. All kinds of hops actually, with grapefruit, pine resin and some bitterness. I would never have guessed that this beer was over 9% ABV.

A good mouthfeel typical to the style, but fairly light and effervescent. The honey leaves just a touch of a coating on the mouth.

Excellent drinkability, not too dry, too strong or too sweet. Lots of hops. The balance in this one makes me want to drink it all night, but at the same time the hops are huge. Well done Bell's, too bad I can't afford much of this stuff. (1,107 characters)

Photo of CrazyMacHarris99
4.02/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a slightly hazy orange color with a one finger white head. The smell hits you as you pour. Smells of pine and citrus hops with a sweet fruity scent somewhat like white wine. The taste is again pine and citrus hops but the sweetness is very strong. Taste of grape and honey that really balances out the hops. There is some alcohol burn in the finish but isn't unpleasant. The mouthfeel is light to medium with good carbonation. Overall I really liked this one even though I usually don't like big hops. This one was balanced well and really impressed me. (560 characters)

Photo of SafeAtFirst
4.57/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The pour is a bright orange tinged copper color with a fluffy white head.

The aroma hits right away, huge hop aromas are a mix of citrus and tropical fruits, like a mix between a mango and a grapefruit. Pine needle aromas sneak out as it warms.

On the tongue it's more of the same hop flavors, a little more pine flavor with plenty of grapefruit and orange and plenty tongue burning hop bitterness. Honey and biscuit flavors make an attempt at balance, they mostly fail. The finish is dry and bitter with a spicy burn form the 10.5% ABV.

If you call yourself a hop head then you must seek out this big, brutally bitter beer. I have yet to try a beer that comes closer to capturing the essence of American hops. (715 characters)

Photo of jeffmonarch
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle in a snifter.

A - Really nice copper orange color, slightly cloudy with little white head that disappears quickly.

S - Really strong piney hops. This would be a great holiday beer because it smells like a christmas tree.

T - Awesome hops, really piney just like the smell.

M - Medium bodied with good carbonation.

D - Great beer. Enjoy! (356 characters)

Photo of JustinOSU99
4.39/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice goldenrod color with a good amount of head.

S: Smells amazing! Hops immediately hit the nose and give you a first-hand experience of why it is called "hopslam". I'm really looking forward to drinking this. Hiding behind the hops is a little aroma of raisin, honey, grapefruit and molasses.

T: Holy cow. Hops come up and smack you right in the face. Definite alcohol warmth follows along with some citrus and raisin hitting the palate.

M: Warm and fuzzy in the mouth. A bit heavy but that is to be expected. Dry and tart in the end.

D: Don't drink too many of these at 9.3 abv, but definitely a treat to be had once in awhile. (645 characters)

Photo of IBUnit63
4.32/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into Hess truck glass at parents' house...

Single-finger head with average lacing. Perfect honey-orange body.

Flowery hop bitterness with sweet honey aroma and perfumy alcohol burn on back of nostrils.

Taste brings a little grapefruit but primarily a nice blend of flowers, alcohol, honey and apple. This is nice stuff.

Slightly syrupy but clean on the mouth - tough to gauge if served a little cold.

This is easily drinkable for 1-2 - gets a little heavy on the back end. Overall, extremely well-made. (528 characters)

Photo of EStreet20
4.82/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Got my hands on some. Please Bell's come to NJ.

12 ounce bottle, shaker pint glass.

A - Pours out a pale golden color. Tiny bubbles rush up to a fairly sizable white head. Head stays nicely (thank you hops).

S - Big grapefruit on the nose. Some sweet fruit smell as well. Underneath all the fruitiness is a subtle pine tone.

T - Wow. What a great tasting DIPA. The hops are of course taking charge here, but a nice fruity sweetness is there too. This is a big flavored DIPA with citrus/tropical fruit flavors all over the place. Subtle alcohol flavor on the finish, but it's mostly well hidden. A great, fruity DIPA that ends with a rush of dry bitterness.

M - Nice, coating sticky mouthfell to a medium bodied beer.

D - Loving it. The many mixed fruit flavors mix seamlessly with the hops. A very well put together DIPA that brings all the vrashness one expects from the style, but does have a unique feature that almost resembles balance which we all know is not a benchmark characteristic for the style. Just makes you want more. (1,038 characters)

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

12oz. brown bottle into pint glass (Bottle lists ABV as 10%)

A: A moderately cloudy with a lighter amber color and nice 3/4 inch head.
S: You can smell this one in the next room. Delicious. A nice balance of citrus, mango and papaya, with extreme hops. The nose on this is fantastic.
T: It's hoppy, but not overly bitter like some others. Again, this beer delivers. The balance is unbelievable. Citrus and hops up front with a slight malty sweetness, a faint trace of honey, and a slow finish that leaves you wanting more. Not overdone on thealcohol either, which is hard to believe at 10%.
M: Medium body with moderate carbonation. Lingers a little which I enjoy in this one.
D: Yes please! The whole package delivers, a nice brew (or two) to cap off a work week. Just full of flavor. (786 characters)

Photo of babyhobbes
4.32/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Another delicious Bells offering. I want to thank my neighbor for this thank you for dog-watching beer. I'm drinking it with her (the dog) right now!

Small, off-white head with a nice amber color. Looks like beer...Smells like grapefruit and hops...or perhaps that is grapefruity hops, eh?

The taste is surprisingly hoppy without being overly bitter. This is even more true when having this on-tap.

This is far too easy drinking and yet, it is so delicious. I could easily have too many, and too many would probably be two. So, it's a good thing I am at home.

If you have a chance to try this on-tap, definitely do so. In the bottle it is great but on-tap it is much different. I found it much more hop scented with less bitterness. (It's funny how sometimes bitterness and hoppiness are not the same.) It's much smoother on-tap, too. (840 characters)

Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 3,258 ratings.