Hopocalypse Black Label - Drake's Brewing Co.

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Hopocalypse Black LabelHopocalypse Black Label

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BA SCORE
95
world-class

139 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 139
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 8.14%
Wants: 62
Gots: 21 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  12.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: KevSal on 02-04-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 139 | Reviews: 41
Photo of elNopalero
4.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Ah, the elusive black label Hopocalypse.
Piney, bitter, intense with a candied orange sweetness. Finishes dry and sweet, which makes it immensely drinkable. Warms up well. Watch out for the kick from the ABV!

Photo of rray
3.82/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Good flavor. The balance between the hops and malt is nice but doesn't stand up to the alcohol flavor.
Update: The aroma hops seem to evaporate somewhat fast. When poured from a fresh bottle or keg and enjoyed quickly, I think the hops match the alcohol %.

Photo of Dodgerrigo77
4.71/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Hop Bomb!!! On tap at release 1/31/15, its a yearly thang.
Looks a lil dark for my taste but the hop resin is visible thru plastic cup and has a nice thick 1inch head!
Smells really great orange/tropical some pinecreepibg out but I think its just a pleasant overload to my senses:)
Really big taste, this isn't smooth & trying to hide alc/flavor, if you dont like big Dank in your face try somethi else!
Nice to drink, could probably slam 2pints if I wasnt driving.
Great job by Drakes, I always look forward to their Big IPA's, this really is Big!

Photo of BeerZombies1
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Hopocalypse Black Label
Drakes brewing
Triple IPA
12.5% ABV
100 IBU

APPEARANCE: Poured a dark over ripe nectarine color, subtle but bright light honey colored variations throughout. Big fluffy loosely bubbled 2 finger head that dissipated slowly leaving a nice spotted lacing on the glass. Really enjoy the color of this beer!

AROMA: Smells like I'm cutting fresh fruit for a tropical salad. Mango, papaya and pineapple. Lemon zest and a nice malty sweetness. Very I pressed with the nose on this considering it's a more then a few months old. Juicy and wet aroma not much of a hop present. Possibly slight pine resin but that also could because I know what drinking and what I should be looking for.

TASTE: Wow! This tastes amazing. Like a party in my mouth and tropical fruit was invited. So much mango, nectarine candied pineapple but not overwhelming at all. Nice squeeze of fresh lemon comes in and I'm actually picking up some nice muted hops that work really well. I am getting some honey sweet malty goodness coming through I'm assuming more now then would be if fresh. Slight bitterness on the end that really pulls the flavor profile together.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium plus body and a lazy low carbonation that just kinda pops and tingles slightly. Light oil slickness with a great bitter warm finish from the high ABV.

OVERALL: I was very impressed with this triple for such a high ABV it was very drinkable for me. I enjoyed every last drop! Would love to have had this fresh to compare. It did drink a bit more like a barley wine almost like an aged hopslam. I would for sure search this out either fresh or with age on it any day!

RATING: 4.8/5 Zombie Heads!

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.24/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle pour at the pre-FWIBF bottle share held at the Adelaide Inn in Paso Robles, CA.

Pours a hazy orange with a foamy off-white head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, citrus zest, and slight tropical fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet citrus zest and brown sugar flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with really nice citrus forward hop characteristics all around.

Photo of scottfrie
4.04/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes:
22of bottle purchased from the release yesterday. Poured into tulip.

A: Pours burnt amber with a dense but not as large as expected light tan head that faded into a greasy film. Not much lace. Disappointing head.
S: Extremely dank and resinous smelling with notes of weed, cat box, peach, pineapple, and orange sherbet.
T: Ultra greasy and hoppy. Crushingly hoppy and sweet with tropical fruit nectars hop resin and oil, citrus juice, pineapple, and dank weed, lemon pith, yard trimmings, boozy finish, creamy orange aftertaste.
M: Crushingly bitter and strong, a sipper of a beer, hop oil is tingly and combines with the booze to make a thick and greasy mouthfeel and heavy body.
O: Heavy, greasy, oily, boozy, hop onslaught. Bitter as hell with a tingly hop oil mouth. Like sucking on a bouquet of hops. Very unbalanced and rough around the edges. Younger is so much more refined. This is a brutal onslaught but I couldn’t drink it all day every day like some other dipas.

Photo of mc4z
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle from the brewery. Pours a nice orange that is barely see through. The head dissipates really quickly and there is not a lot of lacing. The smell is sweet and citrusy. The taste is just like the smell with sweet malt and then lots of grapefruit and pineapple. The mouthfeel is thick with lots of hop resin and some booziness. Overall this is one of my favorite triple IPAs, a style I have a love/hate relationship with. Plus, the release party for this beer was a blast - highly recommended.

Photo of JackTse
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Hopocalypse is probably my favorite triple IPA because of how drinkable it is.

Appearance:
Deep amber, great to look at - make you thirsty looking at it

Smell:
Could have better nose but it's not outwardly friendly. Still smells fresh, hoppy as is

Taste:
Black label wins in taste. Great balance for a triple at 12%. For me, a triple should be shooting for this balance rather than palette destruction

Mouthfeel:
Wins in mouthfeel as well. That malt sticks with you in the right way and that intricate balance with the IBUs is just heavenly.

This is an outstanding beer and you should try it while it's available.

Photo of kaseydad
4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I could have sworn I had reviewed this before since I have consumed a few in my past...guess not. Had it on tap but this review is from the bottle. Picked up yesterday 2/1/14 from the brewery release.

Pours a nice clear orangy/amber colored ale with a off-white foamy head that dissolves a little quickly but leaves a ring to keep me company. Maybe a touch of lacing....but not much.

The aroma was hitting me first with big blasts of pineapple. Huge. Reminds me of those small dole pineapple juice cans I used to drink. That slowly fades and then the citrus and pine notes are brought forth. Oranges and grapefruit offer sweet whiffs. The 12.5% booze is apparent in the background but very subtle. Just enough whiffs of malt to let me know it's not all hops. Outstanding.

The taste is almost tangerine/pineapple/and any citrus fruit rind tasting. Just big gulps of fruit blasts with a touch of tartness and a finish of bitterness and light heat. Excellent. These guys did a great job of placing 100+ IBUs in this and really keeping it relatively smooth. Almost no booze presence on the sips....but it definitely creeps up quickly, but not enough to keep me from finishing the bomber. There is just enough malt to keep it nicely balanced. It works.

Overall this was worth the 3 hour wait for only a two bottle allotment. Some say the green label is better...and so be it. I prefer this gem and though I only see it once a year and for a few hours, it is a reward worth seeking out and repeating. I had it on tap yesterday and I must say, for once, the bottle version bested the draft. Go figure.

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a trade with TheFugitive. 22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours very hazy deep orange amber color with a 2 finger dense off white head with great retention; that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of huge pineapple, tangerine, grapefruit, mango, orange peel, lemon zest, floral, pine, caramel, honey, grass, and floral earthiness; with some light booze. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of tropical/citrus hop notes with a good malt balance; and big strength. Taste of big tangerine, pineapple, grapefruit, orange peel, lemon zest, floral, pine, caramel, honey, grass, and floral earthiness. Good amount of earthy pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, citrus zest, pineapple, floral, pine, caramel, honey, grass, and floral earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice balance and complexity of citrus/tropical hop flavors; with a moderate malt balance that doesn’t overpower the hops; and minimal cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a slick, sticky, and fairly crisp mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is fairly well hidden with only a small warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent big Imperial IPA. All around great balance and complexity of tropical/citrus hops with good malt balance; and quite smooth to sip on. A bit boozy, but not bad. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of macrosmatic
4.01/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to eyebereej for hooking me up with this one! Reviewed from notes. Poured from bomber into a Russian River pint glass.

A: Pours a hazy deep gold with a huge white head. Good visible carbonation.

S: The nose is similar to regular (White Label?) Hopocalypse (Pine, tropical fruit, mango, citrus) but more caramel malts, and the apricot and mango hops seem more prominent.

T: Follows the nose. Almost a sticky candied bready fruit aspect, but is quite boozy. The sweet malts come to the forefront more than expected. Booze and bitter hops on the hang.

M: Chewy, thick body, and the alcohol heat is obvious. Reasonable amount of carbonation.

O: Well, it's a huge, hoppy and malty "Triple" IPA. Not one I'd be likely to have a whole bomber by myself, but it's good - don't get me wrong. I would prefer the standard Hopocalypse to this one - just less boozy, and it lets the hops shine through better.

Photo of jlindros
4.19/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Thanks to HaveUSeenMyCellar for this one. Shared with rudzud.

Big creamy fluffy bubbly 1 finger head fades pretty slowly tons of soapy lacing, pretty hazy nectarine orange color beer, one of the best 12.5% abv IPA appearances I've ever seen.

Nose is much lighter than I expected, light tangerine and orange zest citrus, bit of fluffy malt and balance, light candied orange, some pine, booze is hidden well.

Taste sweet candy to start, candied orange peel, lots of syrupy malts, sweet candy malts, reddish toffee like, syrupy, light tinny malt, grainy and light biscuit cereal like. Hops are quite bitter... very bitter but balanced, citrus, candied orange peel, light pine and resin, not much else. Booze is hidden very well, just a touch of warming booze. Finish is sweet and sticky, candied orange peel, pine lingering, hint of booze, little stone fruit hop flavor too. Long lingering syrupy liquid hop extract kinda thing.

Mouth is fuller bod, creamy carb, little warming booze.

Overall ok, but not as awesome as I expected. I think I actually liked the green label better.

Photo of rudzud
4.26/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Again, big thanks to JLindros for sharing this bottle.

A - Poured into a palm tulip a glorious slightly hazy orange nectarine hue with a one finger white head that fades to leave a thin blanket and nice lacing.

S - Aromas of balanced sweet malts, pine, and orange peel. No booze, shockingly light..

T - Taste is well, disappointingly non assertive. Sure the sweet sticky malts and bitter hops (orange and pine) are there but everything is super balanced. Expected this to be more "in your face" but alas it was not.

M - Mouthfeel is nicely bitter with a sticky sweetness and syrup . Good lingering bitterness.

O - Overall I was underwhelmed by this beer. Was expecting much more bitter aggressive hops but alas, it did not deliver the goods.

Photo of MCain04
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Acquired from a trade with WestCoastBrew2, thanks bro, hope you liked the Hopslam. This is 4 or 5 weeks fresh, 22 oz bottle poured into a Half Acre snifter.

A: A clear amber/orange body with a 1.5 finger off-white head with great retention and lacing.

S: Tropical fruits, strong mango and pineapple presence, citrus and orange, a little pine notes can be picked out as well. Smeet malts are also apparent.

T: Follows the nose quite well. Tasty tropical hops make this a very fruity beer. Not as syrupy as I expected. A lot of heat though throughout. Definitely warming on a cold day. Moderate bitterness. The aftertaste of hop resin and alcohol makes it hard to drink this quickly, although that's not necessarily a bad thing.

M: Full bodied. Sticky. Carbonation is spot on.

O: A beast of a beer. The TIPA style is hard to tackle, balancing a huge malt backbone with hops and hiding a huge ABV isn't easy. This is probably one of the better, if not best, attempts at the style. Definitely not a beer I'd have more than one of in a sitting. I haven't had the pleasure of Pliny the Younger, so a comparison would be interesting. Worth seeking out!

Photo of Hamburgers
4.44/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear dark, dark orange with big two finger fluffy white head. Good lacing. Strong hops aroma with notes of pine, citrus and mango. Complex flavors of citrus fruit and fresh cut grass. Super malty and absolutely packed with hops. Little bit of heat. Big mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Slightly bitter finish. Very well balanced for a monster of a triple IPA. The end is beer alright...

Photo of rlee1390
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Clear orange, two finger head with little carbonation. Tad bit of lacing is left.

S-Strong malt character, some citrus hops as well. Very sweet smelling.

T-Strong hop presence, but the balance isn't there. Nice bitterness in the finish. The hop flavors and malt are all over the place. Still flavorful.

M-Medium bodied, lots of hop resins, nice carbonation.

O-The best triple IPA I've had, but like the others the balance isn't there.

Photo of harrymel
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottled 31JAN13

Golden with a solid quilt of fine creamy foam. Smells like pineapples, mangos, some weed, some pine and more juicy pineapples; hints of honey in the malt. Flavor is a bit boozy, sweet, some bitterness, some of the bitterness is spicy and there is a certain tangerine character here also. Alcohol remains a little too much for my liking. Medium bodied with moderate carb and a semi dry finish. Nice beer.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.75/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

650 mL bottle poured into a clear Solo cup. Drank this right after the regular Hopocalypse. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Slightly less dreary looking than the regular version. Small white head. Decent lacing.

Smell - Bright citrusy orange hops. Not as much grass and pine as the regular one. Sweet smelling, but the hops drown it out nicely.

Taste - The sweetness really overwhelms the hops in the taste, though. Citrus, but dominated by sugar. Still slightly bitter. The malt overshadows all the other flavors.

Mouthfeel - Not as thick as I thought it would be at 12.5%, but overly sweet. Low carbonation. Not that tough to drink, really. Not a lot of booze.

Overall - Good, very hoppy, but too sweet. Somewhere in between this and the regular one is probably a great IPA.

Photo of tewaris
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber orange colored with good head and retention. Delicious malty aroma with plenty of toffee and baked notes but not much hops in here, odd. Tastes sweet, malty and bitter. Certainly crossing over to the barleywine domain... reminds me of Old Guardian 2010 that I had a couple days ago. Thick and syrupy feel but not meant in a bad way. Not DIPA, IMO, but good.

4, 4, 4, 4, 4

Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.26/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 22oz bottle.

Pours a very nice dark copper color with some slight amber hints. There is a nice 0.5 inch head that forms and there are some nice dense bubbles as well as some chunkier ones in there as well.

Tons of juicy mango and papaya comes up first with some nice citrus background to the aroma. A bit resinous and piney as well. The nose is a bit on the soft side.

The flavor is something else. Starts off with tons of sweet mango and papaya notes. Apricot as well and nice pineapple notes mixed in with some slight orange and grapefruit. Very tropical. This flavor stays through at varying degrees. There is also a very nice citrusy note that balances out the intense tropical notes and makes the brew a bit more drinkable with some nice resinous dank pine on the backend of this. A nice thick oily piney sweet taste at the back end can be perceived with a nice thick bitterness. The mouthfeel is nice and medium with some slight syrupy notes.

Pretty good brew with some nice intense hop notes and very tropical flavors. Interesting flavors. Probably the most mango and papaya flavored IPA I've ever had. The grassy spicy and piney pines also come up nicely. Great effort.

Photo of afrokaze
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Really hope this becomes a yearly release along with Aroma Coma because this is my second and last bottle.

Pours a gold/light amber with a finger of tight head and oily lacing that disappears fairly quick.

Smell is cutting citrus - lemon oil, lime juice, grapefruit - that makes your mouth water before you drink it. A good amount of alcohol in the nose mixes with some herbal and piney hops with a bit of honey.

Hot damn, this is amazing. Tons of citric acid bitterness from lemon and grapefruit juice, balanced out by apricot and marmalade sweetness. The hops build up with every sip and mire complexities come into play, evidence of the huge hop schedule. Malt is hardly there other than a bit of sugars and the finish is unique, almost like a really sharp aged cheddar or hard cheese with some earthy and herbal qualities. Alcohol is definitely there but appropriate for the huge bitterness that linger long after the last drink.

Has great body, with a bit of creaminess that reminds me of English malts. Reminds me of the unfiltered Hopocalypse I had on a tour, substantial but not too sticky or heavy. The warming effect of the high ABV is actually well integrated and keeps it from being too overwhelming.

I'd have to say hat this is the best triple IPA I've had thus far; it pushes the hops to absurd levels in terms of flavor profiles and IBUs, and I hope this goes into yearly release because it's like liquid hop crack.

Photo of Sean9689
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Frank (lurchingbeast) for hooking me up with a bottle...I was ISO this for quite some time. Poured into Darkness tulip.

A - Pours a burnt orange color, light white head, thin collar.

S - Huge tropical sweetness, dank pine, resin, and explosive citrus. It's pretty boozy, but at 12.5%, that's to be expected. There's some caramel malty sweetness in there as well.

T - Huge pine, citrus, tropical notes that all attack the palate with a bitter force. There's some caramel/syrupy malty sweetness in there as well. The booze is there, but not quite as much as I was expecting. Finish is huge bitter hops with some booze mixed in.

M - Medium, good carbonation, oily finish.

O - This is simply a monster IIIPA. I'm glad I was able to split this one several ways, because I doubt I would have lived through an entire bottle by myself. This one is nice in smaller doses, but nothing something I would go crazy to seek out again. Not as good as PtY or Ephraim, IMO.

Photo of ngeunit1
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear rich golden-orange color with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down fairly slowly leaving behind some thick lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - Aroma is full of citrus and pine hops with grapefruit and orange and sweet caramel and biscuit malts with just a touch of alcohol.

T - Starts off with a big citrus and pine hop flavor with lots of grapefruit and bitterness with some sweet caramel malt in the background. Through the middle, more pine and grassy hops flavors come through with some more bitterness and some biscuit malt. The finish is a mix of sweet malts with some residual sugar sweetness, citrus hops, and just a touch of booze coming though.

M - Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a sweet, bitter, and warming finish.

D - Very drinkable. Really nice Triple IPA. The hops are really strong and have a great complex flavor, but the body and malt of the beer keep up nicely.

Photo of popery
4.11/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours orange-gold. Not really cloudy or hazy, but it does look thick. Smallish off-white head. Medium bubbles. Aroma is quite sweet. Lots of malt in the aroma. Hops are piney with floral and tropical fruit flavors. Some grass and citrus, as well. Nice, rich malt notes. I'm getting pine, lemon, honeysuckle, pineapple and mango from the hops. Taste has lots of malt sweetness and hop flavor. Lasting finish with a mild but firm bitterness. It's a big mouthful of beer. For a 12.5% abv beer, the mouthfeel is really quite good. It's not cloying or sticky. Just a bit thick. The hop flavors coat the mouth. There's some booziness, but it seems to have been cleaned up some from last year. It's not a Younger killer, but it is a very solid strong DIPA.

Photo of Florida9
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear amber in color. Forms a small off-white head that reduces fairly quickly to just a thin ring around the edge. Some minimal lacing. Looks flat after a few minutes, giving the appearance of a glass of whiskey.

S: The aroma is not nearly as strong as I expected it to be, but there are lots of orange, tangerine, and citrus qualities. Sweet malts and some alcoholic heat.

T: Again, lots of orange and orange juice with a strong malty sweetness. Caramel malts and a touch of toast. Strong flavor of juicy, citrusy hops with a good amount of alcoholic heat on the finish.

M: On the lighter side of full bodied with lower carbonation levels, a slight syrupy viscosity, and a moderate bitterness.

D: For such a big beer, it is surprisingly drinkable. Lots (and lots) of citrusy hops, but lots of alcohol as well. A very nice beer and one of the better "triple" IPAs I've come across.

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Hopocalypse Black Label from Drake's Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 139 ratings.