Pursuit Of Hoppiness - Grand Teton Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pursuit Of HoppinessPursuit Of Hoppiness

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

472 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 472
Reviews: 185
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 10.03%
Wants: 41
Gots: 35 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Grand Teton Brewing Co. visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 10-10-2009

Pursuit of Hoppiness Imperial Red Ale is brewed to showcase the brash beauty of American hops: Chinook, Centennial and Columbus at 100 International Bitterness Units (IBU). The hops grown in the United States are considered to be some of the best in the world. Compared to their more traditionally subdued, elegant European counterparts, American hops are bold, bright, piney and zesty. This ale is brewed with Idaho 2-Row malted barley and German specialty malts to provide a rich, slightly caramel flavor and bold reddish color. At 22 degrees Plato starting gravity and about 8.5% alcohol by volume, this thick and warming beer is to be shared and savored.

100 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 472 | Reviews: 185
Reviews by jwinship83:
Photo of jwinship83
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle drank from my sierra nevada hop tulip glass. bottled in march of this year.

A- this one pours out a translucent red colored body with rusty highlights. on top sits a full two fingers of khaki colored head. the head takes its time falling, and leaves behind small rings of lacing.

S- after my initial whiff, it becomes apparent that this is going to be all about the hops as the name indicates. lots of herbal, pine, grapefruit, and earthy notes. after that some malt moves in. toasted bread, caramel, and a touch of toffee. i think i can make out a little of the alcohol.

T- the taste starts out with toasted bread and toffee malts. some caramel sneaks in and adds a sweet backbone. after that its on to the hops. grapefruit are the most prevalent. theres definitely some pine in here too, along with a little bit of spiciness, orange zest, and earthy notes.

M- the body is a solid medium. the carbonation is as well. very little warming from the alcohol.

O- when im in the mood for a hoppy red that isnt hope head red, this would be a solid choice. ill check this out again next year. solid example of nearly a red IPA.

More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - This is a reddish-brown in color, mostly brown, with a modest head that did though leave some nice lacing.

Smell - This smells like a little bit of everything. The hop profile is very complex and hard to pin down. On the one had you have some stiff PacNW citrus notes but then on the other hand are some mild simcoe aromas. Either way, the brewery name may sound German but this is definitely an American hop profile.

The malts though are just as big. There is a very slight toasty character to the malt profile and I can even pick up some sweetish chocolate. This is very natural-smelling with the promise of big flavors and big body.

Taste - I thought the strong hops and big malts might collide here but this somehow achieves a marvelous balance. The sweet malt comes out big and strong, the hops are grand yet smooth, and everything melds quite nicely.

Mouthfeel - This is a big beer as promised. I wouldn't call it full-bodied but it is pretty darn close. The carbs are thankfully very soft and the beer deftly avoids a harsh bitterness at the finish with the finely-tuned sugars.

Drinkability - This is one of the more drinkable big beers that I've had. It has a very natural feel and taste to it and the brewer did a great job of finding harmony in some big, big flavors.

Photo of brownbeer
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Amber pour with a creamy tan head.

S- Smell's hoppy. Somewhat piney, more floral and grapefruity. Fresh.

T,M,&D- Here's the let down- body is thin, a little watery. Which increases the gulpability but doesn't lend to the overall experience. Cherry, grapefruit, a little pine, but needs more malt and more bitterness and finish. It's gone before you know it's there. Granted, it hides the 8.5% very well, it just doesn't do much for me. The pursuit continues.

Photo of Beaver13
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, bottled on 12/07/10. Pours a hazy reddish amber with a medium frothy off white head that quickly goes to a thin film that leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is sweet tropical fruits and some resiny hops and a little caramel malt.

The flavor is sweet nutty caramel and crystal malt with tropical fruits and a bit of grassy bitterness that does stick out a little in the aftertaste. As it warms, the hops start to overpower the sweetness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and pretty watery.

Overall, a nice imperial red. It's a bit much on the sweet side for me and rather watery - but still nice.

Photo of Jason
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1 liter flip top brow bottle with a vintage date.

Right away you can tell this beer is bottle condition, as I poured it into my .5 Liter mug a whole lot of tiny bubbles started to form slowly and gain momentum enough to provide a think three fingers of lace. Reddish amber color is pretty damn clear, no hop haze or floaties at all. Orange rind and tobacco, perhaps a little bit of leather from the hop nose ... small kernel of toasted grain and nutty yeast when sniffing a little deeper. Extremely smooth with a solid medium body. Hops and malt battle it out from start to finish. Hop bitterness grows a little more with each sip and the alcohol sneaks in warmth as well. Maltiness tries hard to fend off with toasted bread and caramel flavors. Hops drive hard with citric and mint. Peach fruitiness in the bitter sweet finish.

A love big reds, especially reds that have a ton of hops and the malt to back it up. Very nice ...

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours orangish-brown with a white head. The aroma is lots of caramel malt with some nice hop character. The flavor is a great mix of caramel malt and piney hops. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. This is only my second beer from these guys, but I have been very impressed with the two I have tried.

Photo of jondeelee
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pursuit of Hoppiness opens with an aroma that nicely befits the name, being bright and full of citrusy, lemony, piney, grapefruit notes from the hops, which slightly tickle the nose in their citrusy bitterness. A healthy malt base, full of brown sugar, vanilla, biscuit, orange, and berry aromas, complements the hops. The aromas as a whole are well balanced and enticing, none overwhelming the beer, and the slight stickiness around the bottle's mouth promises excellent viscosity and quality of brew.

On the tongue, the beer opens in good IPA-like style, with a huge and immediate hit of hops, which bring pine, grapefruit zest, lemon, dandelion stem, mint, and eucalyptus notes, as well as a good dose of bitterness from the 100 IBUs. The hops are so well-balanced and crafted that, despite their intense flavors and bitterness, they still allow a good amount of malt sugar to break through, providing a base of orange liqueur, berry, toast crust, brown sugar, and fresh whole wheat bread. The beer is tilted very much in favors of the hops, however, and this continues into the aftertaste, which consists mainly of the dandelion stem, grapefruit rind, and lemon rind hop notes, with some brown sugars and oranges left over, and lingers for some time. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium to medium-high.

Overall, this is a great Imperial Red Ale, showcasing an excellent range of hop and malt flavors, and being largely well balanced--at least, as well balanced as a 100 IBU hop monster can be. The hops do overly dominate the aftertaste, of course, and tend to slightly detract from the sugars in the main mouthful, but I doubt many hopheads will protest too much. Very much worth trying.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml capped and foiled bottled poured into a boulevard tulip, bottled 5.5.11

pours out a murkey reddish color with a nice off white, almost tan colored head that had some very nice retention and some decent lacing as well.

somewhat muted piney hops balanced by a nice sugary caramel, biscuity malt.

a good balance, but some of the hop flavors seem a little lost. again, biscuity, caramel malts balanced by a bit of pine. still a solid hop bitterness in the finish.

medium bodied with some nice carbonation for the style. slightly stickey feel.

this surprisingly stood the test of time very well and leaves me even more intrigued to find a fresher bottle.

Photo of moundbz
4.4/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Carmel sweet and super hoppy bitter taste, but not overpowering

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.39/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Nice to see imperial red ales, they're a rarer style, and this is a stronger one at that.
Poured into becker pint glass; deep garnet/ruby with a thin off-white head that fades fast but leaves nice delicate lacing. Smell is floral hops, with some yeasty bourbon-like booziness, probably from the bottle-conditioning. Taste is awesome; smooth and sweet up front with lots of clean malt, moving suddenly into huge bitter and floral hops, with a hint of alcohol (not much though, for 8.5%). Bottle-conditioning definitely mellows the booze out, and this one has a nice clean mouthfeel and wet finish, leaving a slight lingering bitter aftertaste. I'd love to try this stuff fresh. Next time I'm near Idaho I guess...

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.52/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Came across red, carbonation was definitely not a problem, wasn't a gusher, but it definitely was excited to get out the bottle. Head didn't amount to much or stick around long. Aroma was less red, more dipa on the caramel and sweetness tip.

Taste, less hoppy than expectations were, being that it was called pursuit of hoppiness. Not a fail by any means. This is really one of those line blurs when it comes to style. A little bit red, dipa, strong ale, whathaveyou. Sticky.

Price was just too much for what you get, there's a lot better investments, this was like $11 for a liter.

Photo of chinchill
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fresh growler served in a Sweetwater pint glass. Pours crystal clear and quite reddish, with a large frothy beige head. Head has very good retention and leaves sticky lacing on the sides.

Massive hop aroma, with a bit more pine than citrus. The flavor is more fruity and surprisingly mild; not actually mild but not the harsh/bitter hop hammer the nose led me to expect. Nor does it seem possible this is a 100 IBU beer or one with over 6%, let alone over 8%, ABV. There's a solid toasted caramel malt base that tames the hops and adds to the richness.

M: medium-full body; near medium carbonation.

O: an outstanding imperial red that has the aroma of a DIPA but is highly drinkable. Higher ABV is well hidden in both taste and feel, though it does appear in the nose.

Photo of glid02
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased from Wine and Cheese place via mail order.

Pours a slightly hazy deep amber color with a cream-colored head leaving solid lacing.

Smells of smooth caramel malts with large amounts of pine and floral hops.

Tastes similar to how it smells, though the hops are a bit more restrained. Mildly dry caramel malt flavors up front are joined quickly by pine hops. Midway through the hops turn more herbal, carrying through to a moderately bitter ending. Mouthfeel is very good, with grainy carbonation.

Overall this is a solid beer for one of my favorite sub-styles, the hoppy amber. Well worth a shot.

Photo of quirkzoo
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy deep amber with an adequate off white head that recedes to a thin layer on the glass. Nose is distinctly piney hops, not quite as much as I was expecting from the title but a good amount for a red. Taste is definitely pine hops with a strong malt backbone. Flavor is accented with a touch of caramel sweetness. Finish is a clean grapefruit peel bitterness. The mouthfeel is good for the style. Overall this was an enjoyable brew. I was expecting a bit more hops given the name but it is a mighty fine imperial red none the less.

Photo of shredsofautumn
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1 pint, 9.4 oz. bottle.
Bottled on 5/15/2011.
This particular batch comes in at a striking 8.5%. Just where I like an "imperial amber".

Bottle poured into a 22 oz. Hefeweizen glass with the rest of the bottle chugged down after pour. (blasphemy!)

Beer was chilled down lightly for a 15 minute stint in the freezer after being chilled in open 60 degree New England Autumn air for about 5 hours. Hefeweizen glass spent 10 minutes in the freezer as well just to get some frost haze on her and keep the nectar within cool while I sip it.

Pours a deep orange-like red reminiscent of the Fall leaves which are beginning to fall here in Massachusetts. Due to the slow angled pour and the chilled nature of the beer, a good head was not properly procured.

Smell is mainly of tropical citrus hops, buttery caramel malts, and pounds of tropical fruits (nugget nectar comes to mind. hence the imperial hoppy amber trademark)

Mouthfeel is a medium to medium light feel. Resins coat the mouth, but no creaminess to be found per the style.

Taste is predominately spiky citrus and tropical fruity hops, with a slight astringent flavor coming in afterwards. Middle of the taste has a butterscotch/caramel malt with a fairly hoppy, yet still buttery finish.

Overall, a good example of an Imperial Amber. Nugget nectar is slightly better, but considering the year round brewing of this beer, I'll definitely come back to it at some point.

Photo of MrVonzipper
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottleshare and tasting with Alucard4, BHOBS and DarthKostrizer.
Pours tawny caramel color with a Nice thick 2 cm eggshell bubbly head with good retention and fair lacing. 

Very nice nose. Nice caramel maltiness. Sweet floral tones and light pine. 

Great flavor and balance. Nice floral and light pine hop character perfectly balanced with a mild creamy caramel maltiness.

Smooth creamy mouthfeel Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall this is definitely one of my favorite all time reds if not the best. Excellent flavor and nose. So perfectly balanced. I am impressed every time I try a Grand Teton Cellar Reserve. Well done boys.

Photo of GilGarp
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml capped bottle. Bottled on 12/7/2010.

Served cold into a pint glass, Pursuit of Happiness is a beautiful radiant red color. Clarity is good and the head slowly settles leaving some good lace behind.

The aroma is really nice and hoppy. There is some grapefruit and other citrus. A little bit of pine too.

Flavor is impressively hoppy and bitter. Good balance of flavors too with a nice sweet start that leads to a citrus-hop center and grassy dry finish. Caramelized sugar and lightly roasted malt.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with appropriate carbonation.

Overall a good hoppy red ale. I could have been a little better fresh (ie two months earlier) but it was still pretty solid.

Photo of Sammy
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A full litre had to be shared by two others. Pours above average slightly dark body with lasting quarter-inch head. Malty aromas mostly. Above average mouthfeel, red style is not normally my favourite but I appreciate the toasted malt and the balanced presence of so much hops: summit, simcoe, chinook, and nuggets. Better with food, it was drinkable and satisfying.

Photo of dirtylou
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap, monks house of ale, sioux falls, sd,


Appearance: served in a nice tulip, deep amber body, light beige film, color similar to a garnet rock

Smell: tropical fruits, pine caramel

taste: sticky pine, caramel, toffee, red grapefruit peel, bitter orange peel, light booze. I like imperial reds where the hops add some flair to the caramel malts-nice brew from teton

Mouthfeel: sticky hop resin, moderate alcohol

Overall: nice-glad to see on tap as bottle prices are quite high

Photo of WoodBrew
3.71/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The pursuit of hopiness is leaving wanting more....not for more beer....just better beer. With this name you better bring some hops...I just feel overrun with malt. The appearance of the beer is great...poured a nice ruby red with thin slight off white head that is lacing nicely. The scent has waifs of hop but there is a strong sweet malt with tinges of alcohol. The taste is big sweet malt that is not well balanced by hops...almost a syrupy flare. The mouthfeel is a full body brew with subtle carbonation. Overall it's ok...glad I tried it...but I would not go looking for it.

Photo of tempest
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a hearty 8% strong ale. It's a bit heady like a barleywine, but lacks the malt backing of the style. The hops still dominate here, but I feel like they could be dialed back a bit so they're less overwhelming and more complex. Still, there's a great syrupy pine and guava aroma. The flavor has more of the pine syrup with grapefruit and orange peel notes. The pine and grapefruit stick to the back of your tongue and just hang there. Don't try to drink something else after this beer, your palate will be locked on it for a while. Both the aroma and flavor offer a hint of dried bread malt, but this is a hop bomb and a fine one.

Photo of Brandt
4.52/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this beer pours out a copper ruby color with an off white head of one to two fingers

the smell hits you long before you get your nose in the glass but when you do you get strong citrusy hop aromas and some caramel notes and a more pungent spicy hop character too

the taste is very bitter on the back of the tongue while being pleasently sweet in the rest of the mouth at the same time.a great floral hop flavor and wonderfuly firm bitterness.

this beer finishes out with a lingering floral hop character that overwhealms your nasal cavity and a subdued bitterness that stays with the tongue. this is a really wonderful beer and any hop head would be glad to have a pint of this (or a 1L bottle as the case more often is with the grand reserve beers)

Photo of dbossman
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Deep read--nearly cranberry juice level of red--with a thin, steady head; lacing is great

S: Wonderful citrus hop aromas: grapefruit juice, apples, and lemon; a subtle grainy undertone but mostly sweet citrus fruits

T: Nicely balanced between the hops and malts: the citrus (grapefruit mostly_ hits you up front and then comes the grainy--slightly bready and toasty--malts; alcohol is well masked and it isn't too sweet

F: A bit thin actually--especially in the back end; there is a bit of that sticky oily residue that I like in my hoppy beers sticking to the roof of the mouth but in all it's just a tad too thin for what it should be

O: This is a very nice, hop forward beer from Grand Teton--one that I will seek out again

Photo of Fatehunter
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%

Pours two fingers of head on a cloudy dark straw body.
The aroma is dark grains, wood and caramel.
The taste has a big bitter bite at first, that is quickly tamed by the caramel sweetness, finishes with a mild bitter note. Great profile.
The texture is thicker.

Photo of Avila1
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Great Red Imperial with 100 IBUs

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Pursuit Of Hoppiness from Grand Teton Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 472 ratings.