Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...
Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest BeerAdvocate updates delivered to your inbox.

Hopslam Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Not Rated.
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,266 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,266
Hads: 11,683
rAvg: 4.45
pDev: 8.54%
Wants: 2,431
Gots: 2,668 | FT: 65
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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hopslam Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 3,266 | Hads: 11,683
Photo of BeerNut402
4.79/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The initial smell of this beer was amazing! This is my first time tasting this beer so this should be quite the experience. Just the bottle artwork alone made the anticipation hard to bare.

Appearance - Golden and amber in color. Clear appearance with a straight down pour it gave me about a inch of head.

Smell - One of the best smelling beers I have ever had the honor to smell. It had the normal floral smell of a normal IPA but had an extra sweet smell which I would attribute to the honey.

Taste - BAAAM!!! this beer definitely Slams the palate with a floral sweet hoppy taste. The combination of sweetness and hops was impressive to say the least.

Mouth - Not nearly as light as it appears to be by looking at it. The mouth is full and almost expansive

Overall - Just like the bro's put I too have been HopSlammed ! This beer was a perfect combination of Bold yet Smooth, Hoppy yet Floral. I think its safe to say that I am in love... (948 characters)

Photo of TripelBlove
4.64/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This has to be one of the best IPA's I've ever had. Yes, I know it is a double IPA but I categorize all of them together. Had it as part of a sampler with several other beers and what I love most about this beer is that although you get a strong sense of hoppiness, the honey quickly dissipates any of the lingering bitterness that is usually left by such IPA's. A must have if you are ever at the brewery, try to save as much as possible. Currently aging an '11 and a '12 together. Looking forward to when I can try them next year! (532 characters)

Photo of BrbnBarlAgdBil
4.9/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

One of my favorite beers. The thing that has always stood out to me about this beer is the hints of honey. It is such an easy drinking beer, but the taste and layers of flavor are so complex that by the time you start to put it together, you take another sip and realize that there are even more layers. One of my top beers! (324 characters)

Photo of itsratso
4.55/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

i think what this comes down to is the west coast vs east coast iipa thing. this beer, in my book, is the best example of an east coast iipa. the hops may star in the west coast version, but the malt plays a much bigger role here as compared to a west coast iipa. the hops are big, piney and resinous. but the malt is sweet with a huge mouthfeel and just delicious. i love both styles, but this is one of the best. (414 characters)

Photo of GeneralSpecific
4.83/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Actually got this beer in Florida of all places.

I love the softness of this beer and the well-rounded body it provides. Don't get me wrong you know it's a DBL IPA with those hop flavors but that honey just smooths things out so well.

Probably the best beer to hide alcohol I have ever tasted, I mean you could slip this to someone as pale ale and most would drink it not thinking about a 10% beer.

Phenomenal beer for sure. (427 characters)

Photo of Everything_Belgium
4.86/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Oh man this is a good beer. My friend texted me and said " you better get over there and get some Bells".

Man was he right!

Poured into tulip glass. The smell was wonderful. Sweet goodness.

The taste. Oh man. This is a double ipa ladies and gentlemen. Super sweet hops perfectly balanced.

This is one beer I will be buying again though expensive. (353 characters)

Photo of smokiee629
4.51/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked this up the other day while looking for a different beer. Saw the $18.99 price tag and figured it had to be good. It was. the touch of honey is just great, such a nice beer. Very smooth and not overly hoppy. very satisfied. I think its only a spring beer so better get it when you can. (292 characters)

Photo of RoninVP
4.49/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into 16oz Ball Mason jar.

I recently tasted this against "Loose Cannon", "Raging Bitch", & "Aprihop". Each have their place and Bell's Hopslam stood out as a the best of the group. The group all agreed that isn't wasn't so wild an IPA that most IPA drinkers couldn't handle it. I'm happy knowing that I can stock the fridge with this (when I can find it) and everyone will be happy! (397 characters)

Photo of sorryifyoudont
4.55/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ok, I know this review is in spring but for a winter seasonal, sue me. Wonderful pour with a frothy head bubbles throughout. Golden amber tint to the pour. Smell is a bit of citrus but you can't avoid tears from the hoppiness(good thing). Taste almost mimics the smell extremely hoppy finish with a citrus undertone. Sits on the tounge well. Overall a great beer and I am glad it lived up to the hype. (401 characters)

Photo of bradenh
4.18/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Hopslam (2014)- the first Hopslam release I have had. I heard last years was better but anyways...

A- Golden, light brown. Caramel is probably the best color description though

S- More malty and sweet that piney and tropical, overall balanced between malt and hops.

T- Very slight carbonation fizz and sweet hops come through on the from end. Aftertaste is slightly bitter, dry, piney and hoppy.

MF- Not too familiar with mouth feel describing words yet, in between a water and milk consistency, full bodied.

O- It's a very drinkable and balanced DIPA I must admit. I used to never like IPAs, but I am really starting to enjoy them now. This is a great DIPA if you can get your hands on it. BUT IF YOU CAN'T, DON'T FEEL LIKE YOU ARE MISSING OUT. This beer (at least this years Hopslam) is not worth $20 for a 6pk. I lean towards the less sweet, more hoppy, piney, and citrusy IPAs (Victory Dirtwolf and Great Lakes Chillwave for example) and this 2014 Hopslam didn't quite make me fall in love with it. If I can get next years bottle I would be very happy, but if not, that's fine. There are thousands of more beers worth a $20 price tag more than Hopslam. (1,163 characters)

Photo of blakenarron
4.1/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pleasant to drink, however, not what I was expecting based off of the high demand. Taking into account the price, I can't see myself searching this beer out to drink again. (173 characters)

Photo of roggae
4.4/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Finally picked up this case after coveting it for about 6 months. Got home and poured one after a short cool in the fridge. A bit more bitter than i had expected, but this beer is exceptional. Great beer for fans of Pliny, Dreadnaught, 90/120 min IPA. Great beer! (263 characters)

Photo of Dan2165
4.17/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Knew this was rare, but witnessing the want of this is unbelievable. People lined in DROVES at beer fests and reservations were needed at every store that would carry it, haha. Anyway:

[A:] Light golden, like a honey lemon almost. From the name alone I was expecting an amber or darker, so a surprise when it was poured.

[S:] Fruits all over the place (not really surprising). Every citrus you could think of with a hint of honey in the middle.

[T:] A close to perfection balance of sweet to bitter I think. Fruits and the honey really shine.

[M:] No viscosity or heaviness to it at all.

[D:] Packs a punch if you aren't careful so i'd recommend two at the most. But after one it gets you hooked. Started a little bitter but finished with a sweet aftertaste. (764 characters)

Photo of jred98rt
4.64/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Honestly, this is my favorite beer. I was introduced to it early in my beer drinking career and still love it.

A: poured into a 0.4l pilsner glass. Head depends on the pour, aggressive pour results in a beautiful head, normal pour results in a minimal head, common to my experience with other IPAs. Rich golden color. Nice and clear if you can avoid getting the yeast in the glass.

S: To me, this beer smells happy. One whiff and all of the trials of a long day disappear and I relax into a semi-solid blob. I'd pay a lot for an air-freshener with this smell.

T: The happy doesn't end with the smell. Beautiful flavor of hops, balanced with a sweetish finish. I've found no other IPA to have this flavor, which is depressing since it is such a limited release. The bottle says "brewed with honey," so I'm guessing that's the secret.

M: Very full mouthfeel. A bit bruising if you aren't used to the hops.

D: Exceptional for a double IPA. Not something you can slam, but with this quality, you want it to last.

I've had early release bottles, post release bottles (the liquor store stockpiles it) and tap, all are exceptional. (1,130 characters)

Photo of Bejogle
5/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

After trying soooo many beers on the best of BA list and being disappointed time after time by the hype, FINALLY there's a beer that blows my mind.

A: Pours a beautiful amber color with a 2 or 3 fingers of head.

S: Jesus. I don't know if it's the honey or what but this beer's smell is indescribable. It's similar to the smell of Nugget Nectar, only more intense and a bit sweeter.

T: "Tastes just like it smells....DELICIOUS" - Dave Chappelle. Unbelievable blend of hoppiness and sweetness, with almost no alcohol burn at all. As close to beer perfection as I've ever tasted.

M: Just the right amount of body. It's not so thin that you're wondering if you're drinking dasani with food coloring in it, but it's not so thick that you feel like you just liquified a turkey.

D: 10 percent?? Are you kidding? It drinks like a session beer, and as such is quite dangerous.

Overall, the best beer I've ever had period. I'm a mid atlantic guy, so my craft beer foray began with Troegs. Nugget Nectar was my mecca, and this just expands on everything that was.

Well done. (1,072 characters)

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

Light gold in color with an orange tint. Pretty decent head which dissipates into a lasting layer of bubbles. A little lacing too.

Aroma starts with a bit of pungent hop and floweryness. Strong scent of candied citrus fruits - lots of pineapple and orange. Very sweet and perfumy smelling. If the aroma was a bit stronger it would be a 5.

Huge amount of hops in the tasted. Very balanced and refined; the bitterness is never harsh. Strong pineapple note with a general tropical flavor and a good amount of grapefruit. Hop floweryness throughout too. Interesting sweetness from the honey, though it doesn't taste explicitly like honey (makes me think of candied apple). A little pine in there too. Alcohol is noticeable but embraced. It's fantastic, and very complex

Carbonation is good, and the thickness is right for this IIPA. Immensely drinkable. Even with the strength and boldness of Hopslam, I could easily put a few down, more so than most 'regular' brews. (967 characters)

Photo of psunate
4.9/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at the great Brass Rail Beverage. Literally had the first 2 drafts off of a fresh tap thanks to Cisco.

A: Pours a beautiful yellow/orange color with a fluffy white head and fantastic lacing throughout the tasting.

S: maybe the best smelling draft beer ever...you can pick up on the hops, with delicious pine and citrus odors as well as the solid sweet malt and honey background.

T: In a word, incredible. Pine and citrus hops up front with an absolutely perfectly balanced malt and honey sweetened background that makes this DIPA balanced in every sense of the word.

Overall; this is the best IPA/DIPA I've ever had on draft without a shadow of a doubt. The 10% ABV is well-hidden. Hopslam is pefectly balanced and well worthy of its hype and praise...Fantastic in every aspect. Again, certainly in my mind and taste buds the best IPA/DIPA I've ever had on draft. (884 characters)

Photo of Landshark67
5/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Since drinking this dbl IPA, I have been on a quest to find even more. Being in Michigan has helped but my sources are drying up. IMO - This beer is exactly what a double IPA should deliver from the initial aroma thru to the lingering finish.

Luckly, I found 2 cases at a local beer store this weekend. (5/10). That should hold me over for a while. (350 characters)

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

Tried this beer for the first time this year at D's Six Pax and Dogz in Pittsburgh, I was thrilled to find it there on tap. Arrived at the table a beautiful golden orange with nice lacing on the pint glass. The nose is so tremendous, I just had to share it with those sitting at the table with me, and all agreed - very hoppy and floral, with notes of fruit, especially pineapple. The taste didn't disappoint, with a great deal of fruity hops on the tongue right off the bat. Finishes off so smoothly that you'd never know about the high ABV. Feels smooth and creamy in the mouth, extreme drinkability - enough so that I immediately went next door to buy a whole case for the fridge. Always look forward to the release of this beer. (732 characters)

Photo of oldirtdog
4.78/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This was a great beer while it lasted... we got a very small keg at my local bar and loved every last minute of it... I won't get into the details as there are PLENTY of other reviews... however, I will say this: for 10%, it is ridiculously drinkable...

If you like hops, this one is for you... it is a delicious and super hoppy... you will also know that you just drank something that was more than a regular beer in alcoholic percentage... however, you want another... the taste is strong of citrus and hops (of course) and I couldn't help but want more...

Get this one every chance you get... equally good in the bottle as it is on tap... (645 characters)

Photo of DJRezN00
4.52/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

batch #8912 poured bottle into a tulip.

served @ 62* (almost room temp)

nice 1" head of off-white color that lasted 3 minutes. beautiful rich copper color with a nice haze.

instant pineapple/grapefruit smell. alcohol hidden well, but the nose lets ya know something wicked this way comes. taste is strong with pineapple and very warming going down. malty sweetness lasts a long time... mmmm. every lil' burp is so tasty... makes ya want more.
high alcohol so tread carefully.

love it. (490 characters)

Photo of NickHerrmann
4.92/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Golden w/ a thick head when poured. Lacing on the glass was apparent following consumption.

Smell: Citris (Grapefruit - amazing) and honey.

Taste: Grapefruit, hops, malts and honey.

Mouthfeel: Light carbonation, sticky in a sense.

Drinkability: Very smooth for a D-IPA. Very drinkable. (301 characters)

Photo of Dogstooth5
4.55/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Smell: very fruity hint of grapefruit and peach. slight malt biscuit

Taste: nicely balanced. hop flavor throughout. slight bitterness. slight alcohol taste going down

Mouthfeel: medium body mild carbonation

Drinkability: exceptional very high for such a large beer (268 characters)

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

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Batch # 9471.

A - Golden orange with little head and a ton of lacing.

S - Citrus fruits dominated by grapefruit.

T - I was expecting to be knocked out by the bitterness, but Bell's did an amazing job of balancing it out with honey. Still, a "tongue bruiser" as the label states. A lot of the citrus comes through midway through, with the bitterness coming at the end.

M - Decent balance, but I can't hold this one on the tongue too long.

D - As many others have stated, the alcohol is well hidden and the beer does not come off as boozy.

I've drank 2 so far out of my 6 pack. Both times I had planned on drinking two, and both times had to switch to something else after drinking one. It's delicious, but so hardcore that one bottle will do you. (792 characters)

Photo of JaphyRyder
4.85/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

If I could review this beer with one word, it would be "Sweetjesus!"

A- It has an opaque orange/gold color with little head and very little lacing

S- Hops, hops, honey, hops, grapefruit, hops.

T- A very bitter, yet pleasant, taste with citrus and hops galore. Honey wasn't as dominant as I expected.

M- Aggressive hops! I felt like they were assaulting the innards of my mouth. Side note, perfect carbonation.

D- Very, very drinkable for a %10.00 ABV double-IPA. Still tough to drink a few in one sitting. Slow down and enjoy it! (535 characters)

Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
99 out of 100 based on 3,266 ratings.