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Kalamazoo Hopsoulution Ale - Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Kalamazoo Hopsoulution AleKalamazoo Hopsoulution Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

260 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 260
Reviews: 145
rAvg: 4
pDev: 10.75%

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
A "German-style Double IPA" according to Larry Bell.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-31-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 260 | Reviews: 145 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Immortale25

North Carolina

3.96/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Had on-tap at Westville Pub Asheville. Served in a 10 oz cocktail glass.

A- Pours a hazy medium amber color with a 1/4 inch off-white head that retains a bit before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly fu sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves clots behind on the glass.

S- Earthy, slightly pungent hops. Smells sort of like an amped up Two-Hearted.

T- Taste follows the nose with piney hops and a pronounced bitterness. More citrus notes than in the nose with some grapefruit and lemon coming through.

M- Lingering sharpness with medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the lighter side.

O- If you find Two-Hearted to be too mild, go for this one. While it's not even close to as good as Bell's trophy winners, The Oracle and Hopslam, it packs a powerful hop punch that will tide you over while you wait for the aforementioned beers' release dates.

Serving type: on-tap

01-21-2014 22:18:51 | More by Immortale25
Photo of PaulyB83


4.28/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap at Shakespeare's Pub in Kalamazoo in a pint glass

A- Nice clear medium-dark amber, darker than Two-hearted, with a nice white head that lingered and stayed surprisingly long throughout.

S- Nice citus and pineapple, and pine with a medium bitterness. Sweet malts help back up the hops.

T- Similar to aroma but with less citrus and more pine with a bigger bitterness than I was expecting. The malty sweetness is still there and makes this a very balanced IPA.

M- Great carbonation and very easy drinking considering the ABV. It's only one point lower than Oracle but it drinks more like Two-hearted.

O- I was pleasantly surprised by this beer and am glad I found it. I was worried it was only distributed to Illinois. I found the hop profile more to my like compared to Two-hearted, I'm just not that into giant floral notes. To me this beer is more similar to Oracle and Hopslam's profile, like if those two had a baby brother, and has more balanced sweetness with the big hops, which is my preference with IPAs. Wish the bottled this stuff for places other than Illinois, I would buy all the time.

Serving type: on-tap

10-31-2013 00:42:04 | More by PaulyB83
Photo of PieOhMy


4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at the Bulldog Downtown

A. Hazy amber like honey. No head. Pencil thin lacing.

S. Grassy. Piney. Lemon peel. Pepper. Cut flower.

T. The taste does mimic the wonderful smell. All those aromas come through. Fresh and bitter.

M. Medium. It has a backbone. Foams a bit. Finishes with a bit of booziness.

O. Very well done. English style IPA. Not my favourite of the style but tastes great. The hop profile is awesome. Right up front. Maybe too much heat. Excellent nonetheless.

Serving type: on-tap

09-26-2013 23:37:31 | More by PieOhMy
Photo of gatornation


4.24/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

on tap@ blue door pub

A-pours a beautiful mostly clear golden amber color with nice lacing and a nice fresh looking cap thru out
S- was average it was tropical and fruity with malts and hops
T- way better then smell good god it starts with huge amounts of smooth tropical hop flavors of mango pineapple grapefruit citrus with nice sweet malts non bitter hops explode in the mouth with so much taste
M- smooth /sweet and delicate no bitterness in the hops but hugh flavors of dank resinous hops ABV is so well hidden perfectly carbonated
O- so delicious and tropical in taste no bitterness in the hops superb 2ipa

Serving type: on-tap

09-23-2013 20:54:57 | More by gatornation
Photo of Axnjxn

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

on draft at sams in Durham into a shaker.

dark copper color, mild head. the smell is a tad hoppy and sweet, but not too much. maybe a bit lacking here. taste however isn't lacking. great hop profile as well as balanced malts. on the sweeter side for an IPA with great orange and citrus notes. bitterness is almost nonexistent and ABV drinks like 6%. medium bodied with mild carbonation.

overall a very impressive IPA from bells!

Serving type: on-tap

09-20-2013 21:11:51 | More by Axnjxn
Photo of fredmugs


4.53/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at The Tap. Did some reasearch before I had this beer and I definitely agree that it is lacking in aroma. I did enjoy this beer much more than The Oracle but not as much as Hopslam. This is a very drinkable beer and by that I mean the alcohol content is very hidden. I could have pounded down several more of these and I will surely go back and get more before it's gone. For me the lack of aroma is the only thing keeping it from being World Class.

Serving type: on-tap

12-07-2012 14:40:51 | More by fredmugs
Photo of barczar


3.86/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper color with a thick half inch head that dissipates slowly, leaving sheets of lacing.

Holy grapefruit! Smells like a fresh cut grapefruit at the finish. Subtle undertones of caramel malt and resinous hops are hard to find.

Resin and skunky hops dominate the flavor initially, with grapefruit and orange pith adding complexity. The caramel malt backbone surfaces briefly to tie the citrusy hops into the slightly bitter finish.

Body is moderate to slightly full, with carbonation tending toward the lower side, and substantial alcohol warmth.

Overall, a tasty dipa. More citrus hop character than anything, on the whole. The malt is present, but not the star, and the finish isn't overly bitter. It's a bit over the top grapefruit, but dangerously drinkable!

Serving type: on-tap

11-07-2012 22:15:08 | More by barczar
Photo of smakawhat


3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a half pint tumbler glass at Churchkey.

Orange amber body, with lots of rising carbonation, topped with a thin puck off white in color. While drinking gives some good ring lacing.

Nose seems very subtle and buried, some mellow pine at first which is nice but pretty closed.

Palate hits with a wonderful cask like feel and mix of solid carbonation, buttery smooth with right amount of fizz. Wonderful tropical ambush with this beer, big mango on the finish. Fruit hop angle comes with a little bit of orange citrus, and mellow light brown sugar malts.

Overall juicy hop delicious beer. Solid brew.

Serving type: on-tap

10-02-2012 21:54:31 | More by smakawhat
Photo of cfrances33


4.4/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Bar Louie in Mishawaka, IN. Served in a shaker.

Pour: Cleargden with two fingers of soapy off-white head. Leaves amazing lacing.

Smell: Dank hops, with citrus and grapefruit. Little bit of pine. Not much of a malt presence to speak of here

Taste: Follows the nose but with a much larger citrus presence. Caramel malt kicks in to provide a nice sweetness. Hops really own the show here, and the finish is resinous and bitter.

Mouthfeel: Very juicy, but with a light refreshing body. Went perfectly with my gumbo. Would never know this clocks in at 9%.

Overall: Really, really great DIPA here from Bells and I'll be honest, I think this is better than Hopslam. Wish this was bottled again, or at least saw leg distribution.

Serving type: on-tap

09-24-2012 19:10:03 | More by cfrances33
Photo of JackieTH


4.23/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on draft at the 2012 Autumn Brew Review, from notes.

Light amber pour, clear, white head that laces up nicely. This really had a really nice soft tropical nose with citrus and mango elements. Taste is fruity, moderately bitter and dry with predominant orange, citrus notes with underlying mango and papaya. Good depth and very enjoyable presentation of a variety of fruity hop flavors. I'd definitely seek this one out.

Serving type: on-tap

09-16-2012 13:49:36 | More by JackieTH
Photo of WYVYRN527


4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip glass at The Bulldog Northeast.

A: Burnt orange in color with a two-finger white head. Retention is excellent, with sticky lace coating the sides of the glass.

S: Some caramel malt up front, but it is soon dominated with grassy, floral hop tones.

T: Much like the smell. Caramel and toast to start, with some fruity esters on the mid-palate. Finish is dry, with massive floral and piney noble hop character.

Notes: This beer is medium to full-bodied, with incredible balance and a slick mouthfeel. Alcohol is hardly noticeable, despite being 9%. Overall a very tasty brew, and I'm glad that I had the opportunity to try it.

Serving type: on-tap

09-13-2012 19:36:36 | More by WYVYRN527
Photo of BMMillsy


3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Michigan Brewers Guild in Ypsi. Pours golden with frothy head. Smells of straight bitter hops and pine. Taste is pure pine and bitter, but one dimensional. Dryish mouthfeel, medium body, heavy carbonation. Not impressed with this one. Only okay. This was so one dimensional as to be just extremely boring. Not a bad beer, but not much to it.

Serving type: on-tap

07-29-2012 18:20:35 | More by BMMillsy
Photo of AgentMunky


4.53/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Served in a 6 ounce snifter (then a ten ounce half-pint glass) at Beer Run in Charlottesville. From notes. Reviewed 1 February 2012 (last night).

A: Light head, good lacing. Clear orange with some bubbles.

S: Phenomenal! Loads of hops and soft fruit. Complex, spicy, foreign hops.

T: Light and interesting. Lots of fruit. It's a bit dry. (The rumour is that the keg got stale and, while it is vaguely reminiscent of a stale Saltine, it is no less excellent for that.) Hops are piney and bitter and don't taste very German.

M: Malty and bitter. The beer is more substantial than I first believed.

O: A riotous good beer with excellent balance between the excellent malts and the engaging hops.

Serving type: on-tap

02-03-2012 02:17:56 | More by AgentMunky
Photo of jayhawk73


3.5/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On draft at Churchkey:

Pours a medium amber color. Little lacing on my snifter glass. The nose is fruit- pineapple, grapefruit, grass, and a little caramel malt. A little on the weak side for me. Taste follows suit here, very fruity. Feel is medium, syrupy, with a little dry aftertaste. Overall, not great- but worth trying. Cheers.

Serving type: on-tap

02-01-2012 02:30:21 | More by jayhawk73
Photo of russwbeck


4.43/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Third pairing of RFD Washington's Bell's Beer Dinner. This beer was brewed especially for Illinois, due to distribution laws, the brewery was having issues with Hopslam. To combat this, they came up with a (hop)solution: create a new beer! This was paired with Machengo macaroni and cheese with carrots, cauliflower and peas topped with brioche crumbs.

A: Insanely clear amber pour with a small white head. Decent retention and lacing. 4

S: Ton of bitter hops without a malty backbone. All about the hops with some tropical fruits like citrus and mango. 4.5

T: Follows the aroma perfectly. Citrus and orange for the fruits. Bitter hops. A small malt backbone and some alcohol add a nice balance. Very enjoyable. 4.5

MF: Really bitter and drinkable. Alcohol on the backend. 4

O: As delicious as Hopslam and very balanced. I have to try Hopslam again before I reach a final verdict as to which is better. My gut, however, is going to give it to Hopslam. The big IPA pairs nicely with the mac and cheese. They’ve done a great job pairing the beers and the food so far. 4.5

Serving type: on-tap

01-14-2012 17:13:30 | More by russwbeck
Photo of elNopalero


4.43/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Spelled this one incorrectly in my notes and it took me forever to figure that out! ISO: Editor…

Anyways. This pours a golden tan-straw color. There’s a very fruity hop profile to this, not just citrus but also tropical fruits. I’m thinking of grapefruit and pineapple, primarily. Comes through on the aroma and definitely on the taste as well. It’s a good one.

Serving type: on-tap

01-03-2012 04:15:23 | More by elNopalero
Photo of Treebs


3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on draft at Palmer Place in LaGrange. Served in a snifter glass.

A: Pours a dark purple and amber mixture with a half finger, light yellow head. Leaves great rings of sticky lace. Great looking beer.

S: Grapefruit citrus with a bready malt and resiny pine. Little candied sugar.

T: Taste is pretty much the nose to a T. Candied sugars and citrus fruits with the grapefruit making the number one appearance. Bitter hop finish with also a slight oat malt thrown in for good measure.

M: Medium bodied with great carbonation and a malty, bitter finish on the palate.

O: This sounded great and while it didn't live up to my own hype it was still a solid offering. Taste was a little too muddled for me.

Serving type: on-tap

11-24-2011 14:25:12 | More by Treebs
Photo of bobhits


2.93/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

The opening of this matches even the hopslams of the world. A big citrus front with plenty of hops and malt. The issue I have is that the finish is milder than two hearted. A very boring finish. Sure a lot of citrus and caramel malt but a dull boring finish that even IPAs do better with.

Worth a shot but not a beer that you remember.

Serving type: on-tap

11-17-2011 03:32:11 | More by bobhits
Photo of jimbus


4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Earthy light burnt orange - minimal head - caramel malt on the nose...not exactly what I was expecting with an apparent DIPA - taste is super juicy, pineapple and resin and pine sap, bitterness complemented a sufficient malt backbone. Just an awesome flavor profile that I still can't put my finger on - mouthfeel is full and smooth - definitely able to enjoy more than one of these bad boys - cheers.

Serving type: on-tap

11-12-2011 00:33:32 | More by jimbus
Photo of Hojaminbag


4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hop Solution's body is a russet color with an off-white head that is frothy and sticky looking. The retention is pretty good, and thick, sticky tendrils of lacing cling to my glass.

The aroma is super fruity, with grapefruit, orange, pineapple and a bit of resin coming from the hops. A little bit of light malts comes through in the background, but the aroma of this one is easily dominated by hops.

Hop solution has a good bit of resiny hop flavor that brings an earthy, spicy character to the beer, but the flavor profile overall is dominated by fruity hops just as the aroma was. Pineapple, orange, grapefruit, and maybe even a touch of lemon all come together, drowning out the malt in the background. Grapefruity is the weakest of the fruit, with pineapple being surprisingly aggressive. Bitterness is moderate; somehow Hop Solution packs a ton of hop flavor with just enough bitterness to dry things out a little bit. The malt is sweet, with caramel malt mixed in, but it isn't too powerful or even all that noticeable. There isn't even a trace of alcohol or warmth as the beer finishes dry and a little bit bitter, with grassy hop flavors mixed in.

Medium bodied, a little bit oily on the tongue, not incredibly bitter.

Hop Solution is quite good, which makes me wonder why I don't see it released more often or more widely distributed. One of the more impressive parts of the beer is that it hides that 9% ABV very well, with no heat or even warmth to speak of. Quite honestly, I had this one pegged as a single IPA and not a double.

Serving type: on-tap

10-25-2011 14:19:00 | More by Hojaminbag
Photo of tsauce2


3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

P: on tap in to a Bells tulip glass

A: SRM is light amber. White head, tight bubbles, dissipated to hang on rim. Medium lacing.

S: Hoppy notes with slight carmel and spice notes.

T: Less hoppy than anticipated for an American DIPA, but this is described as a German DIPA. Nice hoppiness, alcohol comes through a little, slight carmel notes on palate.

M: Medium body. Again, lighter than anticipated. Medium hoppiness, no overly bitter notes, nicely balanced on the palate. Semi-wet finish.

O: This beer is more IPA than DIPA. Reminded me of a half Hopslam with no honey. Overall a good beer, and a good price for 9%. Alcohol came off a little, but hard to prevent with a 9% beer.

Serving type: on-tap

10-22-2011 01:38:25 | More by tsauce2
Photo of lstokes


4.25/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Copper body, fairly light in appearance, with a very caramel-forward and grassy nose. With the taste, imagine an IPA with a spoonful of apricot jam mixed in... fruity hops mix with the malts to become sticky-sweet and fruity, but there's also a good spice to it so that it doesn't weigh you down. Crisp and well-carbonated. I don't know that it's a DIPA in a traditional sense, but it's awesome, a great malt- and fruit-forward taste on the style.

Serving type: on-tap

10-17-2011 00:45:22 | More by lstokes
Photo of dirtylou


3.75/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

on-tap, Maduro-Madison

from notes

appearance: served in a bells shaker pint, golden orange body, fluffy white cloud, good retention

smell: piney, biscuity malt, light non-bitter citrus, caramel

taste: there are some interesting reviews of this one - this draft version was moderately hoppy (compared to hopslime and oracle at least)-light tangerine, citrus, bready, nutty, dry grain - the german tag is a stretch but its certainly a nontraditional dipa

mouthfeel: medium-light

overall: enjoyable and new to me - compared to hopslime its a sigh

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2011 23:11:47 | More by dirtylou
Photo of prototypic


3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hopsoulution Ale is copper in color. It's mostly clear. There's a faint orange tint to it when held to light. It's covered with an off-white head that rises to about half a finger in depth. It recedes rather quickly, leaving a lighter coat of sticky lace behind. Not bad.

The nose is good. It definitely features some sweet caramel notes up front. Fortunately, they don't seem overly strong. Hops follow quickly. They smell mostly grassy, piney, and a little floral. I'm guessing noble hops in some form, at least in part. There are some light citrus orange and grapefruit scents, but they are secondary. Alcohol is somewhat noticeable, but is not overbearing.

The flavor is keeps the pace. This is an interesting DIPA. The malt base does seem mostly caramel. It's sweet, but not to an offensive degree. Hops add piney and grassy flavors. There's some citrus orange in the background. I'm still sticking with noble hops although I'm not sure that's what was used. They add some bitterness, but the malts provide a good deal of balance. I wouldn't characterize this as a "hop bomb" by any stretch. Alcohol is blended well. It's a little noticeable, but isn't warm or hot. Finishes a little sweet and grassy.

Hopsoulution Ale has a medium body. Light carbonation helps it to attain a smooth feel. It goes down pretty easily for a 9% abv beer. I'm sticking with a single glass nonetheless.

I never thought I'd actually try Hopsoulution Ale. I suppose I was lucky to find it on tap at the Eccentric Cafe. I understand that this beer was brewed specifically for the State of Illinois because Two Hearted Ale wasn't available for a period of time. Nice gesture by Larry Bell. It's characterized as a German style DIPA. I'm guessing that's because German hops were used. It's good stuff. I wouldn't say the hop profile is a great choice for a DIPA, but it is good and is certainly novel (to my knowledge). Definitely worth checking out if the opportunity presents itself.

Serving type: on-tap

07-28-2011 19:43:41 | More by prototypic
Photo of brew3crew


4.22/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at bell's cafe 7/21

A-Golden yellow with a white head that is very inviting...

S-hoppy with a little bit of fruit

T-alot like it smells. sweet caramel malts with a little bit of hops just to remind you that they are there...

M-medium body and very smooth

O-Good beer. Wish they would bottle it with wider distribution!

Serving type: on-tap

07-26-2011 02:14:37 | More by brew3crew
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Kalamazoo Hopsoulution Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
89 out of 100 based on 260 ratings.