Hop Henge Experimental IPA - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Hop Henge Experimental IPAHop Henge Experimental IPA

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2,345 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,345
Reviews: 838
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 233
Gots: 256 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SurlyDuff on 01-21-2009

This is their new version of Hop Henge Imperial IPA, the hops have been modified as of 1/2009.

Available: January to April
Alc. by Vol.: 8.5 - 9.0% range
IBUs: 95
View: Beers (152) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,345 | Reviews: 838
Reviews by GJ40:
Photo of GJ40
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 22oz bottle purchased at Pike Street Beer & Wine in Seattle. Batch #2 (1040 2009 E).

A - A light amber color with good clarity and a moderate off-white head. Very good lacing.

S - Rich malt leads but then piney, citrusy and floral hops start to emerge. A little honey as well.

T - A very rich but balanced blend of malt, hops and alcohol. The piney hop flavors are strong. Not much citrus in this one. More and more subtleties come out at the end as it warms.

M - A good oily consistency with a low to moderate carbonation that lets the flavors shine.

D - I normally prefer citrusy hops over piney hops but this brew is still very impressive. A very complex and rewarding beer.

More User Reviews:
Photo of sergeantstogie
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It feels weird to me to rate an experimental beer that changes, as far as I know, every year. But this is one very drinkable DIPA. Almost creamy without being cloying. Perfect amount of bitterness. Not too fruity or citrusy. Really damn good IPA. Sure it could be prettier but who cares. Glad I snuck this into the grocery cart today.

Photo of Chiefy770
4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

1 Pint, 6 Fluid Ounce Bottle
"Best By" date of April 7th, 2015 printed on the label
Reviewed on March 26th, 2015
Served in an IPA Glass
(2014/2015 Release featuring Millennium, Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook Hops. ABV 9.5%)

Poured a dark gold body with a slight orange glow. Fluffy head formed, a little over an inch deep, collapsed, and left a tremendous amount of foamy lacing throughout.

Sweet notes of tropical fruit were prominent. Notes of grapefruit and lemon peel definitely suggested this brew had bitter tendencies. Herbal and spiced hops mingled with sweet toasted malts. I definitely picked up a whiff or two of alcohol as well.

Sweet and juicy hops hit the tongue first. Sweet notes of orange and pineapple took a tart turn, letting bitter notes of grapefruit and lemon break through. Earthier hops settled in the lower levels near the malts. Subtle notes of pine were followed by a very minor presence of toasted grains. Definitely a dry finish with a decent hit of alcohol. Medium bodied, leaning toward the full side of the spectrum. Moderate/low carbonation.

As far as DIPAs go, this one is certainly not "in your face" as far as hop intensity is concerned. Great focus on the middle tones of the hops, rather than the often overly-bitter takes on this style. My biggest beef with this brew would be the ABV... 9.3% and I definitely tasted it. Regardless, I am looking forward to next year's version!

Photo of oberon
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Glad to get a fresh bottle.Poured into an imperial nonic a brilliant burtn orange with a large sticky white crown that settled slowly leaving broken globs of lace behind.Big fruity hop,overripe pineapple,grapefruit,and tangerine aromas abound overtop of a healthy caramel malt base,no alcohol really detected.Citric fruit flavor with not a real bitter edge to the hop profile,not as sweet as way to many of the style are, although there is a caramel sweetness to it,the alcohol stays pretty well hidden for the style but is noticeable.Big and fruity with not really any stinging alcohol,Deschutes kicks ass.

Photo of APetitfils
4.72/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: A nice clear amber complexion with slight tints of orange and red. Off-white or ivory head that retains very well.

S: More going on here than I initially thought. Fruity aromas range from apricot, orange/tangerine, lemon, and even a slight hint of grapefruit when you give it a real wiff. There is also a nicely balance touch of hops that resonates through the fruity aromas and makes you clearly aware that your drinking a hoppy beer, but more of a friendly reminder than a slap to the smeller. Also the alcohol plays well in the overall aroma (another pleasant reminder of the fun to come).

T: A very well balanced mix of husky hops, fruity sweetness, solid malt, alcohol and even a slight slight bit of smokiness towards the end. The hops blend so well with the fruit signatures (the same of which are present in the smell) that you instantly forget your putting back 95 IBU's, but as you go through the several stages of flavors you end up right back with a refreshing hoppy taste. So don't worry about taking your eye off the ball. The alcohol also accompanies the hops very well.

M: To be honest it really surprises me how this beer is able to hold such a medium bodied feel when looking at it on paper. The carbonation that remains very well intact keeps the beer balanced through and through, even when it opens up. This pleasant mid-body allows one to really enjoy the great balance of the hoppy bitterness, fruit and malt taste.

D: The first time I had this beer was off tap and man oh man did I love it. But now that I have sat down at home and had it out of the bottle at my own leisure I have to say it surpassed what I remembered from before. This is a great great example of what Deschutes has to offer. But more than that this beer can break down a lot of doors for tentative drinkers who have misconceptions of what higher IBU beers can be about. Its balance will find a wide variety of fans in my opinion, and if you can snag one definitely try it!

Sorry this is long, but I really liked this one...

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from Beeradvocate Magazine March 07.

Hop Henge IPA's big brother, "Imperial," has been released from its shackles. Centennial, Cascade and Northern Brewer hops are the catalysts for a bitter onslaught. A rating of 95 IBUs is the result of about three pounds of hops per barrel (31 gallons).

Chestnut in color with good clarity and small bubbles in advance. Full-looking head drops a sticking trim on the glass and has commendable retention. Deep herbal, spearmint, blond tobacco and citric-accented aroma from the hops. Creamy, semi-smooth mouthfeel with a dense medium body. Tangerine fruitiness moves on to a citric rind flavor, and the full-on hop bitterness sets in. The 8.1 percent ABV is a bit hidden but warms up the mouth after several sips. Bready, dry malt backbone holds strong even though a ceaseless bitterness barrels over it. Finishes with a dry, herbal character.

Deschutes really knows how to throw down. They may as well stop playing around and make this a year-round brew. Let's go the meat-and-potatoes route for this one; a pot of Hell's Fire Stew is fitting.

Check out http://beeradvocate.com/cookbook/recipe/8

Photo of andyfrancis
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Looks like an IPA, bordering on amber color, nice off white head.

Heavy pine and citrus with some whiffs of cerealy malt on the nose.

Pretty good, definitely a mouthful of flavor. Would be a nice compliment/combatant for some stinky blue cheese.

A little heavy on the tongue, with a bite of boozey aftertaste. Despite that, I hadn't noticed the ABV on the bottle, and was really surprised it was so high when I saw 10.6% here, so that says something. Actually I think I'm starting to believe it.

I'd drink it again with some potent cheese, but one glass is enough.

Photo of warnerry
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

About four months past the "best by" date. Let's see how this goes.

A - Pours a beautiful clear red-tinted brown with one and a half fingers of head, which leave a nice trail of sticky lacing.

S - Lots of hops, mostly citrus, but some florals as well, and what seems to be a bit of spearmint. Interesting and quite nice aroma. Also quite a bit of biscuit malts.

T - Despite being four months past best by date, this still has a healthy hop presence in the taste, again lots of citrus with some florals mixed in. Also has some sweetness up front. Finishes quite bitter, again with a faint taste of mint.

M - Very creamy mouthfeel. Well balanced hops and malt, finishes dry. Alcohol is barely noticeable.

O - Would love to try a fresh bottle, but even well past the best by date I really enjoyed this one.

Photo of Jason
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz brown bomber with no freshness date.

So they tweaked the hops on this years version, I am glad they were able to brew it again. Pours a dark orange amber color with a healthy crowning of off white lace. Smells of blood oranges, hemp seeds, papaya and faint evergreen which comes mostly from the hops. Clean bite in the breath of bitter hops and slightly, but very clean, solvent alcohol. Smooth with a deep creamy malt body. Hop bitterness pops but leave a few spots for the malt to come through. Slight caramel and toasted biscuit maltiness pairs well with the fruity esters. Clean warming alcohol throughout. Finishes hoppy and quite bitter but nothing that destroys the taste buds.

Spot on for the style, what ever they tweaked it still stands comparable to the previous version. Love the beer ... make it year round please.

Photo of IdahoPA
4.81/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I'm a bit prejudice over this IPA not only because I'm a sucker for Imperials, but because this particular IPA has and incredible not too sweet floral hop flavor that finishes a bit bitter not like some IPA's giving you reason to have more and more.

It's a must to pour between a half and a one inch head to give you that creamy aroma as well as the taste in you mouth on that first mouthful. Don't be bashful when pouring into a tulip or snifter glass to get that head built up.

The appearance is golden and and as you drink their is a layer of foam and bubbles left around your glass if clean.

There is only one other Imperial that I can personally compare to this beer and that would be the Firestone Walker Double Jack and it actually finishes in your mouth giving you that feeling of wanting more right away. So why wait.

Photo of badbeer
3.26/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber colored with a white head that had decent retention. Some sulfur in the aroma and floral; hops were a bit catty. Watery, but sweet malt eventually comes in, as well as sap, lemon, and some grainy flavors. Medium body and medium carbonation. Fairly drinkable, though I don't think I'd order another.

Photo of DoShek
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - wonderful deep orange, two fingers of dense off-white head, sticky lacing left all over the sides of the glass, head dwindles down to a thin persistent layer

Aroma - huge hop aroma full of tropical fruits and pine

Taste - juicy hop flavors that match the aroma profile and add in a spicy characteristic, hops dominate but are backed buy a strong malt presence

Mouthfeel - full-bodied with a bite, vaguely creamy

Drinkability - great DIPA, would definitely drink again

NOTE: This was a bottle of Batch #2.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours an orange color with a nice sized white head. The aroma is pine, resin and some grass. There are definitely tons of hops in this one. The flavor is resin and pine with a lot of spices. Medium bitterness. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of bsp77
3.91/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Imperial Pint.

Appearance: Rich, clear amber with creamy off-white head and great lacing.

Smell: Citrus, sweet toasted malt and a touch of pine needles. A little too mild for a DIPA.

Taste: Very citrusy, but not quite the typical orange citrus. Lots of tangerine, grapefruit and a slight tropical twist. Pretty high level of sweet toasted malts, but it finishes a little on the bitter and spicy side.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, creamy somewhat full body. Not as dry on the finish as I prefer for a DIPA, but the creaminess compensates.

Drinkability: Pretty easy to drink for a DIPA, with a fairly strong flavor profile. A too sweet body and light aroma prevent this from being as great as many other Deschutes beers.

Photo of magictrokini
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Massive IIPA. Pours orange-gold with a pillowy whyite head and thick lacing. Fresh, floral hops with a lot of mango and pineapple. Somewhat syrupy mouthfeel. Hop-bomb of pineapple, grapefruit, more mango, and resin. Definite biscuit back with more sugar flavor than caramel. Loved it.

Photo of BenHesk12
3.66/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hop Henge IPA poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Medium thick head that fades quickly but adheres well to the glass. Appearance is your classic IPA copper with surprisingly high transparency. A pleasant citrus hop IPA aroma wafts to the nose and upon first sip an overpowering bitterness hits the palate. Bitterness through and through that starts and finishes hard. Mouthfeel is soft and light. To me it seems the beer has the bitterness of a double IPA without much of the additional complexities or depth of flavor. On the other hand, the 9.3% alcohol is masked incredibly well. This is a strong and bitter IPA without much flavor and a thin mouth feel. Not bad, not great, this is another Deschutes beer that you can tell is high quality but makes you think the brewers played it safe. Someone will have to explain to me why this is an experimental IPA.

Photo of ironlung
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bomber. Batch #3 2009. Into SN etched hop tulip(thanx again Adam)...

A: Dark amber/copper. Big frothy tan head that is there to stay and leave proof of it's presence all the way down the glass.

S: C-hops and some grass with some sweet notes.

T: Oh-man, this is 8.75%!?!? Tastes as smooth as say a Torpedo. I cant tell you how balanced this beer comes off as. After taste is delightful.

M: Perfect. Not syrupy like I was expecting from the ABV.

D: Dangerous. And considering that the bomber was under 5 bucks I'm tempted to go back and buy as much as I can get ahold of! If your a fan of I2PA's you have to get your hands on this!

Photo of mrw1zard
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a cloudy amber with very little to no head, slight lacing down the glass as I drink it.
Interesting nose to this - not as punchy as most IPAs, smell is mingled with caramel and malt.
That being said, it doesn't deliver the hop bitterness and is a little smoother than I thought it would be. Not a bad beer, but probably not something I would seek out on a regular basis.
Worth a purchase if you haven't had it.

Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I am drinking this from a 22 oz. bottle in a craft beer glass 6 weeks before its best by date.
A: Pours brilliant copper tinted amber under a very dense, finely bubbled 1” off white foam collar that hugs the side of the glass leaving thick ledges of lace marking each sip.
S: Citrus, pine, floral, herbal, light malt and light fruit somewhere between melon and tropical.
T: Has a juicy attack with the hoppy citrus flavors riding in on the foam over a light malt graham cracker body. As the foam and body meld together mid-palate the grapefruit and grapefruit rind bitterness come forward and carry the beer to the finish.
M: Creamy, juicy rich medium full body with a very soft, smooth carbonation.
O: A DIPA featuring a balance between hop citrus, fruit and floral flavors and yeast driven fruit flavors.

Photo of ehammond1
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

A very dark auburn with a thin white head. Decent and consistent lacing down the glass.

A hoppy nose for sure, but it's lacking the power and the pungency I love in my favorite DIPAs. All the aromas here, while good, seem muted and a bit distant.

A bitter-first DIPA as opposed to sweet or fruity. There's a presence of citrus but this is dominated by hop bitterness.

Medium bodied, ample carbonation.

A good DIPA, but not one that does anything overtly special. It's certainly a good beer, it's just that the DIPA arena is now so full of world class entries, this one just doesn't quite find its way in.

Photo of MattyG85
4.39/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice. Label says best by 05/31/2013.

Appearance: Pours a bright and lively copper amber orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid three fingers of white head which slowly fade into a thin creamy layer. Leaves a lot of lacing around the glass.

Smell: Big hop forward aroma with lots of tropical fruits in the mix. Citrus hops up front with hints of grapefruit, pulpy orange, mango, pineapple, tangerine, papaya, and lemon. Also some floral and grassy hops with a little pine. Some sweet candied sugar with a hint of honey. Solid malt background with hints of soft biscuit, caramel, cracker, and yeast. Some what perfume like smell. Very juicy and good.

Taste: Follows the nose quite well, a big taste of hops with plenty of citrus esters. Nicely ripe and bitter hop taste up front with notes of grapefruit, oranges, mango, tangerine, pineapple, papaya, lemon, and melon. Grassy, floral hops as well as some pine are also present. Notes of sweet sugar and a little hint of honey. Bready soft malts with notes of biscuit, sweet caramel, yeast, and cracker. A really nice juicy bitter taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very juicy and somewhat sticky. Fairly hot booze feel but its not overwhelming.

Overall: A very good Imperial IPA from Deschutes. Great bitter citrus flavors with a nice balancing sweetness.

Photo of moundbz
3.45/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Heavy on the back of the mouth, long after taste

Photo of HoppySeb
3.71/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served from bottle into Stone IPA glass at about 45 degrees, bottle’s drink by date is 7/15/14. Color is golden with plenty of floaters making it look rich and creamy.

Upon first smelling the pour, while the head is still present, I get an aroma reminiscent of Bavarian lagers – something I never expected from a PNW DIPA. Behind the malt presence, aromas of dried apricots, honey and ripe pineapple emerge as the head starts to settle into a thin layer that continues to cover the beer’s surface.

Sipping this beer makes me realize my first observation of its smell was right – it’s no typical PNW IIPA, it’s something different, something unique. Hoppy flavor? Hoppy bitterness? Nope. There’s a malty sweetness to it and fruity explosions composed of fresh pineapple, apricot and a faint tamarind taste all packed into the beer’s medium body (more typical of a DIPA) that’s almost absent of any carbonation (mouthfeel reminds me a little about cask/real ales).

Overall, I like the brew. I understand why it’s from an experimental series, though and find it interesting that its categorized as an IIPA. It definitely is refreshing and great for hot summer days if properly chilled – its also dangerous as you can barely feel the 9.1% ABV.

Hard to review this one thinking in the IIPA style - but I like the brew.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Some good stuff here, real copper and orange appearance, big whiff of hops and bitter alcohol.

Taste, the alcohol is muted moreso, very bitter, very citrus, good bite, tastes like more of everything compared to the original Hop Henge. Great mouthfeel, citrus hop gives way to more immense bitterness. Drinkable, good price curve on this stuff.

Photo of Jeffwildcat
4.3/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Just did a side by side comparison with the enjoy by. Very close to identical. Bought a growler fill so was pretty fresh. Very clear in appearance. The aroma was not as pronounced considering this was a dipa but the taste is spot on. Glad I picked this one up.

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Hop Henge Experimental IPA from Deschutes Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 2,345 ratings.