Drake's Hopocalypse - Drake's Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Drake's HopocalypseDrake's Hopocalypse

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

643 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 643
Reviews: 176
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 9.33%
Wants: 111
Gots: 100 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: magictrokini on 12-17-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 643 | Reviews: 176
Photo of GRG1313
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear orange amber with a short pure white head.

Nose is subtle pineapple and sweet pine.

Mouthfeel is big, full, rich and creamy and with lots of appealing substance. A nice mouthfull of beer.

Flavors are the strength of this one! Huge mouthfilling bitter pine hops that transcends to a big bitter pine/bitter espresso finish. The flavor profile is not quite as "bright" as PtE or Kern River CITRA but this one is definitely in the league of the best of the double IPAs.

This is a big very drinkable hop monster that is very appealing. PtE watch out.

Photo of colforbin73
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

so... i had a pliny tonight, for the first time in awhile, and now i am keeping the hop train running with this offering from drakes. my 1st impression is of the similarity between this brew and pliny and i would throw Hop Stoopid from Lagunitas into this discussion.

in light of these first impressions, i will review this beer against pliny. Hopocalypse is not quite as dry, the color is lighter and clearer, carbonation is slightly better, (maybe this was a fresher bottle), rich mouthfeel, sightly less grapefruit and a little more pine on the nose, but this is fruitier tasting than pliny.... this is a REALLY GOOD West Coast IPA.

at 9.3ABV, this is WAY over the top... they claim 100+ IBUs... (but i think ibu's should work more like a richter scale, the "IBU" system is out-dated.) if you like this sort of Hop Character beer and bitterness, this is NOT a bitter bomb. it is what it says it is -- a super hoppy, high abv, bitter DOUBLE IPA.

and you have to give DRAKES many props for being honest and revealing some of the recipe secrets on the label. RR is extremely reticent in this regard. DRAKES USES: a mix of American and English 2-Row Malt, in addition, they add Vienna, Rye and Crystal for moutfeel and color, then add German Magnum, Citra and Chinook hops, and THEN dry-hop with more of the same PLUS some Columbus.

INFO FOR FREE> i like breweries that tell you what they are up to -- it is like OPEN SOURCE v. SECRET RECIPE. i prefer open source.

::stands and applauds DRAKES BREWERY::

(as an aside -- i love the label! whoever is desinging denogginizer and this brew -- nice job!)

Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.63/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Well, I gotta say, I'm one of the few and the proud to say I have NEVER liked anything from Drake's...Just never liked 'em...So let's see if they can wave their supposed "accolades" in front of me with this 'a' here brew...

The basics: 9.3% ABV (yeah!) and $6.49/bomber (ouch)...

Beautiful orange amber in color. Nice, frothy head builds up like a sand dune, then recedes, leaving nice lacing. Very light carbonation...

Aromas are nice, somewhat muted and not very out of the ordinary. Their new slogan is "Drink Different, Drink Drake's" and while I like the alliteration, the aroma profile is anything but different. You've smelled this ale many times under different names.

Got two great things today: the new Rotten Sound album (GRIND!) and Dragon Age II!!! Hopefully this ale can stand up to that awesomeness...It hasn't thus far.

Flavor is unique. It's more "hop bomb" than I expected. Very one dimensional and I'm gonna wait a few moments to let the hops wash out of my mouth so I can try a second taste and see if I get any malt or other characteristics. Very bitter up front from the hops...The middle has a very hoppy bitterness, this leads into a nice, long very hoppy bitter finish. The Hopocalypse is upon me!!! It's all hops. I get almost nothing else out of this. Super one dimensional, and I prefer well-balanced or unique. This ale is neither of those things. I guess I'll need Rotten Sound to GRIND this out of me!!!

What I like most: The very nice appearance and overall look.

What I like least: Vibrantly one dimensional flavor profile and high than average price point.

Verdict: Too expensive for such a mundane DIPA. Look elsewhere.

Photo of HipHop5
3.88/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Heavy pore from bomber.

Incredible 3 finger head that retain very long time.

Some patchy lacing here in there.

Dark coppery and sexy orange red mahogany tones color in a tulip.

Rich resin & pine citrus aromas. occasional hot hint, but nothing that will turn you off. All in contrary, this is a very inviting brew with a heavier malty backbone body that balance quite nicely the heavy 9.3 ABV and 100 IBU's.

A very thin and low carbonation makes it a bit oily on the tongue.

Hops bitterness and more hops flavor up front, lingering in the back after taste . The resin keeps it's promise here. A lighter malt bill and this whole complex structure would fall down pretty quickly. It really make you appreciate the craftsmanship of this TITAN of DIPA.

Drake's brings the big guns here so don't expect anything else than Hop bomb with heavy reload in the tool belt:)

Watch it guys, this is no jokes.

To be drank seriously but also responsibly.

Photo of poonamibaxter
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a trade.

Wow, what a great DIPA. I got two bottles and wish I had gotten a case.

Poured into my DFH snifter from a 22oz bottle. Nice dark orange color with a fluffy off white head. Hops hops and more hops on the nose, piney.

First sip is a little syrupy but with a clean dry finish, the hops bite. Bready and slightly sweet but with a dry finish and big hops.

Perfectly carbonated. The bubbles help the hop twang.

You can only have one a night due to the high abv but I would really like the option of drinking one a night.

Photo of Arbitrator
3.08/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Chilled bomber into a glass. Purchased for $7 or so.

A: Pours a slightly hazy copper-amber color with a large off-white head. Retention is excellent, with some good sudsing and a thick collar on the beer.

S: When cold, it has that old towel aroma that reminds me of English hops. It could just be a trick of the pine note, though; as it warms up over the next couple of minutes, that impression fades (though it never vanishes) and it smells vividly like pine needles and grapefruit.

T: Fresh, green, bitter pine needles. This is incredibly resiny, almost to the point of being harsh. It almost has a rye bite to it. Citrus colors the flavor without ever dominating it; I'd liken it to grapefruit rind. This is fairly bitter and dry. I was tempted to suggest "candied grapefruit" for this one, but after having Nyack -- their hoppy barleywine -- the other day, that description is not apt here. This is straight hops with a mild malt presence. It's fairly tasty, just kind of harsh (more on that below).

M: This is bitter and sticky for a West Coast IPA, though it doesn't have quite the same palate-wrecking bitterness that I find in some of our counterparts across the country. It doesn't have a strong alcohol presence, but there is a little nip at the finish that doesn't sit right with me. It's viscous, with carbonation that is best described as "rough." The overall effect is a harsh one.

D: This is rather absurdly priced, to be honest. I think it's a decent DIPA, but it's not so strong that I'm gong to run out and get more, especially if I can upgrade to a Lagunitas six-pack for $2 more one shelf over.

Photo of Murchmac
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this a couple weeks back and forget most of it but had it so many times on tap it's old hat.

Beautiful orange amber looks like a good DIPA with some color in the middle.

Smells like it tastes, big ass hops up front with some bready malts thrown in for good measure. Becomes sweeter as you drink but has that good resin coating a good DIPA should have.

Get it if you like hops. If you dont like hops, go away.

Photo of brotherloco
3.72/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Don't need any freshness dating on this one, as the first bottles were just released last week. I love getting fresh DIPAs!

Bottle indicates 9.3% ABV and 100+ IBUs

A decent looking pour, quite common for the style. Smells great, fresh pine and citrus, very pleasant sweet malt in the background.

Taste is good, but lets me down from the nose. Malt is a bit sticky and sweet on the tongue and masks the initial bitter hop bite. The hop flavor is there no doubt, and is the best part of the taste. The middle gets a bit harsh and the flavors separate a bit. Finish doesn't hide the ABV as much as I'd like.

A good mouthfeel if a tiny bit sticky, but the finish kind of kills any easy drinkability.

Photo of Gobzilla
4.12/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: poured an orangish amber brown in color with yellow highlights and had a very thin head leaving very little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: had a very nice piney citrusy hoppy aroma with some candi sugar, grassy, and sweetness from the malts but had faint mango and hints of booze.

T: the piney character was more apparent on the taste with hoppiness and citrus grapefruit that made most of the bitterness alongside grassy candi sugar accents but with a touch of booze.

M: the brew was light to medium in body with a moderate amount of carbonation which had a sweet, piney, hoppy, citrusy, and bitter finish that lingered on the palate.

D: definitely a west coast style hop bomb with a good hop profile and was a little bit more difficult to drink due to the bitterness factor.

Photo of jyuhas
3.33/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

a - CRYSTAL clear, copper, head large bubbles, lively carbonation, lasting thin head, quite beautiful

s - piney, resiny, light citrus notes, a tad bit of alcohol coming through late as it warms up

t - resiny, spicy, piney with just enough malt to back it up

m - full body, viscous, slightly chewy, rye apparent

o - goes down pretty easily, quite buzzed after one 22 oz though, so won't really need another

Combination of body and flavors/aromas make me think what it'd be like to drink some pine sap with a few barley grains in it. In a good way though.

Photo of billshmeinke
3.31/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark golden body almost amber. A finger of white head. Good retention. Some lacing left behind.

Smells of sweet honey malts. Hints of tropical fruit and floral hops. This is pretty malt heavy in the nose.

Taste follows nose honey like malt sweetness. Hops come through as earthy and floral. Bitter and resinous on the finish.

Creamy, smooth carbonation. Full bodied. A little hot and numbing alcohol.

Meh not the best DIPA. Probably not gonna purchase again.

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
3.53/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bought this at City Beer SF the day after the bottles arrived there. Drank two days later...very fresh.

A - Caramel orange coloring, looks to be filtered well. Bubbles very active shooting from bottom to top, decent head retention and excellent lacing throughout. This beer looks alive! Impressive.

S - Pine, hemp and sugared fruits. Almost candy like. Very fragrant and perfumey. The fruits would be pineapple, mango and orange but covered in sugar. Candied so to speak. Resinous for sure. Big and bold.

T - I really want to give this beer a higher rating here but I just can't. Flavors including the citrus fruit and pine are very bold but this beer tastes like a sugar bomb. Solid malt backbone to back up the massive amounts of hops in this one but It's just too sugary. As I mentioned in the smell, the fruits taste like they were all dipped in a giant tub of sugar and 1/2 way into the bomber it actually becomes somewhat offensive. The first few sips are very impressive (starts off good) but goes downhill from there. Good thing this is 100+ IBUs to have the bitterness cut out the sugar in the finish or this one would have been way too sweet.

M - Good for the style. Sticky and resinous, just how I like my DIPAs. Bitter finish without wrecking the palate.

D - Take the sugar I mentioned out of the equasion and we would have had a 4.5 but half way in I was getting sick of the aftertaste.

Final thoughts - I really, really liked this beer on tap from the source. I recommend it in that setting but I will not be purchasing another bottle. Let's hope they get Hop Salad right in the bottle when it's time for that to happen. Hop Salad on tap is as good as any other DIPA I've had.

Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks like I'm the first to review from a bottle. Poured from a 22oz into a pint. Pours a clear orange amber with two inches of head, great lacing.
Pretty mellow smell for being above 100 IBUs. Though it's mellow it is still pretty interesting. Citrus (grapefruit, orange), grass, flowers and some pale malts in the background.
The taste is also pretty subdued for the 100+ IBUs and 9.5% ABV. Follows the smell with the slight hint of alcohol. Goes down very smooth.
Very drinkable. A very interesting beer. I expected a bit more of an overwhelming hop flavor after the name and blurb on the brew. Still, it wasn't disappointing at all. I'd grab another soon.

Photo of peacebone116
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at my house....thanks Drake's! Poured into tulip glass.

A: Cloudy orange honey color with reddish hues.

N: Pineapple and honey.

T/M: Spicy burn of alcohol follows the sweet fruit notes present on the nose. The spice from the alcohol balances well with the hop dominated citrus (pineapple and a touch of peach nectar) and light pine; a slight, sweet malt backbone, which hints at sugar-cookie.

Photo of augustgarage
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap @ Library Alehouse; served in a 5oz taster glass.

ECE/SAE amber with bright amber highlights; lightly cloudy with a lasting finger of creamy ivory foam. Even lacing, light legs.

Delicate orange-heavy aromatics with a soft vanilla note as well.

Pineapple and other faint "tropical" flavors lead into more citrus notes, resolving to a slow-building but long lasting evergreen-suffused bitterness. Clean pale malt adds to the refreshing quality. Medium-dry finish. Hops are well blended here. The supporting flavors don't elevate the overall flavor profile to perfection, but this is still a very good beer.

Medium-bodied, and a touch oily with mild astringency. ABV is fairly well hidden, contributing more flavor than heat.

Well balanced and pretty quaffable for a 100+IBU ale.

Photo of beagle75
3.73/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Draft service into a shaker pint glass at Beachwood BBQ.

A: Clear, light amber with over one finger of persistent white foam. Lacing is heavy on the glass with clear step-wise progression for the first two inches.

S: Intense pine and citrus combine to make a dazzling hop aroma. Some assertive toasted grain also appears, but seems passive compared to the presence of the hops in the nose.

T: Begins off-dry, with excessive acidity early. Hop aromatics are detectable with grapefruit citrus making up a strong majority of that flavor. The middle sees the arrival of some pale malt, along with increasing bitterness and a whiff of fusel alcohols. Bitterness becomes robust in the finish, showing an intensely herbaceous quality.

M: Thick viscosity, hop oils are palpably resinous and sticky on the palate while acidity is initially scorching, with moderate carbonation.

D: This DIPA displays some common threads to other beers by Drake's, but unfortunately not all of them are positive. While the character of this beer is undeniably hop-forward, it is the accessory qualities that come across as being heavy-handed. Acidity is unbalanced and excessive at times, while the texture of the beer is simultaneously more fizzy and viscous than one would expect for the style. It is a good beer with some rough edges left on, and preferable to many other DIPAs.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.44/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours amber with a medium frothy white head, good lace and retention.

S: Really pretty. Reminds me of Pliny with a heavy resin piney nose with just a touch of citrus, hard to put into words, but I know it when I smell it, beautiful.

T: Has a fairly big malt component especially for CA, but it is constrained within the hop character. Huge pine and grapefruit mix, delicious.

M: Medium to full-bodied, resin filled with a long aftertaste.

D: Outstanding Double IPA, one of the best beers I've had in a while, possibly the best of the new year.

Photo of Beerenauslese
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at SF Beer Week gala

Body is dark gold/copperish. Poured to a half inch head, pretty good retention with lacing.

Smells of light, sweet malt and tons of hops--pine and grapefruit.

Tastes pretty malty, but is balanced by the huge hop profile. Intense pine resin and grapefruit. There's a hop burn on the tongue with this one.

Body is light to medium, with ample carbonation, producing a creamy mouthfeel.

A good drinking, intensely hopped DIPA.

Photo of largadeer
4.42/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

03/01/12 update:

Newer batches of this beer are exceptionally good. Score increased accordingly.

Draft at Gourmet Haus Staudt.

Clear burnished copper body topped by an inch of foam. Solid head retention and great color on this one.

Sharp resiny hop aroma, some crystal malt sweetness, a little weed and candied grapefruit. Fairly clean West Coast ale yeast profile.

Taste is solid, resiny and grapefruit-like hop flavors are backed by a fairly substantial malt backbone. It's pretty malty, but it's also very fresh and well-attenuated. There's a subtle cardboard-like stale malt off-flavor near the finish, but the intensely bitter finish washes it away after a few sips. It's still a bit detracting and prevents this from being truly great, but it's enjoyable just the same.

Photo of WestValleyIPA
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Ladyface Brassiere in a 16 oz shaker glass. Nice golden to amber hue. No head due to their pouring methods. Smells nice and malty, a bit of skunk going on, and some nice spicy citrus. Great flavor, lingering bitterness. VERY VERY scarily drinkable for 9.25. One of the better Drake's brews I've had.

Photo of BTPete
3.73/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Drake's Hopocolypse

A:  amber colored and completely clear.  What small head dissipates to nothing.  

S:  strong hop aroma.  Quite a bit of citrus & floral but also a decent pine presence.  Others agree on pine.  One comments it smells of cat urine...but in a good way.

T:  in the taste the citrus is more present.  It is quite bitter on my mouth and throat.  It ends with a bitter dryness that is a little puckering.

M:  smooth in that it is cask ale and the carbonation is low.  Bitter at the end.  ABV is present though.

D:  a really nice treat out of the blue.  The last firkin or keg of this beer for the year with the brewer introducing it.  I'd drink again, nice local brew.

Photo of kaseydad
4.07/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at the 2010 Hayward Bistro DIPA Festival.

Amber pour with a bright white foamy head. Major grapefruit aroma which is very nice and clean. A lot of citrus blasts in the taste which is very smooth and there is another kick of grapefruit on the swallow which leaves a nice bitterness on the buds...begging for another sip. Smooth mouthfeel and at 9.25% the drinkability is dangerously easy.

Overall I am a big fan of Drake's and this did not disappoint. A great tasting DIPA that is worth searching for. Well done.

Photo of berkey
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pint glass at Hopyard San Ramon. From notes 03/18/10

The small whitish head is retained fairly well considering they actively try to pour all the way to the brim at this establishment. Body is a clean orange amber.

Big messy blast of citrus aroma backed with some great pine notes. Everything one would look for in a DIPA from the West Coast.

Citrus notes continue in a sweet orange slice kind of way but this is a fair share more bitter than I expected. This really works well with the pine needle flavor and relatively dry finish. I'm really not sure I could ask for more from this beer in the flavor department.

Mid bodied with moderate delicate carbonation. Highly drinkable for the listed ABV but wouldn't have more than the two I tried today. This is overall an excellent DIPA. I really hope to see this beer around more often.

Photo of SpdKilz
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

New Beer Friday! Had on-tap at FO in Santa Monica.

Appearance - A few buddies of mine had some PtE at the same time I ordered this so for comparison purposes, this was a darker, tangerine colored beer over PtE, with about a finger and a half of head that lingers around for a while but leaves a bit lackluster lacing.

Smell - Extremely hoppy and citrusy. Definite grapefruit and orange peel in the nose with lighter hop presence. I enjoy the fact I can smell a beer in a bar and not be looked at funny :D

Taste - As alexd said beneath me, this was a bit of a sloppier brew. There is a lot going on here flavor wise and it was pretty damn good, having a more citrus front (though not passion fruit, more bitter citrus) which is finished up by bitter hops and an ironic cloying sweetness.

Mouthfeel - Extremely creamy and decently carbonated. I actually liked the sticky mouthfeel on this (much more than PtE which I had right after).

Drinkability -Relatively so. I tasted just a hint of alcohol when I first started drinking it. Not sure of the abv, however. A good beer to try but with PtE on tap right next to it, "why fix something when it ain't broke".

Photo of bbothen
3.97/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Rose & Crown. From mental notes. I'm sharp.

Pours a deep orange/rust almost brown color with a 1 finger deep off white head. Plenty of sticky lacing & webbing left on glass.

Big citrus aroma, tropical notes, grapefruit, lemon/lime zest, pine needle aroma in there too.

As nose suggests, big citric & earthy biting hop flavor, just enough caramel sweet maltiness to balance the bitterneess, warming booziness as well. The hops do dominate & let you know the star of the show.

Medium bodied, low carbonation, sticky, oily, lingering bitterness.

Guessing the ABV of this one is somewhere around 8-10%. It makes it's presence known. Would happily have a couple in a sitting. Very tasty.

Drake's Hopocalypse from Drake's Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 643 ratings.