Hop Henge Experimental IPA - Deschutes Brewery
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Ratings: 2,053 | Reviews: 800 | Display Reviews Only:
4.83/5 rDev +16.9%
From a bottle, into a large mug in the central texas woods.
A - deep amber, darker than some IPA's. decent off-white head that dissipated relatively quickly.
S - MMMmmm
T - delicious, very hoppy, not to bitter, excellent hop aftertaste.
M - nice carbonation and retention, a little tingly but overall smooth, very well balanced.
D - Our thoughts: Somewhere a beer deity thought up the perfect IPA, and it was Hop Henge, the people saw it was good and there was much rejoicing.
04-08-2009 18:11:27 | More by Frosthazard
4.55/5 rDev +10.2%
Since I do most of my drinking on draught at the breweries, it's not uncommon for bottled specialty beers such as this to come and go before I get the chance to drink them. But on a whim I picked up a bottle for home use. That was a good idea.
As I recall, I dished out about $6.50 for a bomber. That's a buck or two more than I care to pay, but these days it almost seems reasonable. You never know about the shelf life of a bottled beer in the market. Just how long has it been gathering dust under those fluorescent lights? But Hop Henge says right on the label, "This experimental IPA will stand the test of time," so my expectations were primed.
I knew from the first that I was going to enjoy this beer. As it tumbles into the glass, the spry, turbulent body foretells of high quaffability. You can actually see the airy, buoyant mouthfeel in advance of drinking it. And it does feel good across the tongue. It feels as smooth as... well, it's as smooth as whatever you really enjoy to think of that's smooth. And it tosses up a defiant, spongy head of off-white foam that retains globular crescents of lace. The color is polished mahogany and the aroma is of sickly-sweet resinous hops mixed with the syrup of canned peaches.
Hop Henge tastes sweeter than I would have anticipated for a beer alleging to hit 95 IBU. The bittering doesn't intrude at all, suggesting the beer must have begun with a formidable grain bill able to ferment to 8.75% ABV and still retain enough sugars to balance those hops. The flavor is hop-sweet, though a distant echo of smokiness captures one's attention and lends a coy measure of intrigue.
In a word, this one's outstanding. Hop Henge is proof that Deschutes loves us and wants us to be happy.
04-08-2009 02:57:36 | More by RedDiamond
4.05/5 rDev -1.9%
Pretty, hazy, brownish orange in the class--deeper color than most IPAs--almost a barleywine color. Head disappears very quickly to a small ring around the edge. Smell is clean with subtle hops. Mouthfeel is slightly fizzy and soft--really great mouthfeel! Taste is nicely balanced with toasted malt and hops. I'm not sure what is supposed to be "experimental" about this IPA, but the experiment seems plenty successful to me--nice beer.
04-07-2009 05:56:44 | More by PhiloPsych
4.35/5 rDev +5.3%
22oz bottle at 55 degrees.
Pours dark copper with a massive head of beige. Three-plus inches into a tulip glass that took forever to settle down to a thick coating. Lacework mania throughout the glass. Ripped webbs of thick lacing. Spongelike.
Pungent citrus and pine blast out of the glass. Herbal, earthy and resinous with a malt backbone. Candied pears and mango skins.
On the full side of medium bodied with a crisp, drying mouthfeel. Tacky and sticky.
Chewy, juicy hops and malt to balance start off the palate. Citrus fruit with bark-like pine sap. Sugared grapefruit, pears, and resinous herbage. Bitterness is substantial and drying but not coarse.
Finishes with a building warmth, lingering bitterness, and an almost numbing lupulin assault.
Great IIPA. Just lacking some of clean, bright hop character found in the best IIPA's.
04-03-2009 23:31:10 | More by brewandbbq
4.15/5 rDev +0.5%
Batch #3, 2009.
Pours a clear dark coppery amber. Two fingers of creamy tan head falls into a thin cap. Lots of odd shapes, sheets and stands of sticky lace. Absolutely gorgeous, completely drool-worthy...
Aroma is all hops, though it doesn't hit me until the glass is about 6 in. from my face. Floral, citrus, pine and resin. All my kind of hops. Some caramel malts underneath that first onslaught.
Pretty sweet for a DIPA. Flavor follows up on aroma. I get more pine in the flavor, almost no floral, but everything else is there. A nice upright, but not harsh, bitter finish but also a quite a bit of sweetness lingering as well.
Medium heavy body with lots of creamy carbonation and a nice resiny feel.
While I tend to enjoy the sweeter DIPAs, I don't like that sweetness in the finish. That's the only downside to an absolutely stellar brew.
04-03-2009 22:57:20 | More by goatgoat
3.8/5 rDev -8%
This has been well recommended, so I'm looking forward to it. Especially because it's one of the better looking labels you're going to see, something about the image is very cool.
Appearance - A very nice deep ruby amber color. Nice and clear with a nice soapy inch of head that gets going in a minute. Very, very good looking beer.
Smell - Some nice piney hops. Followed by the citrus, and a touch of grapefruit. Almost some burnt sugar malt back there. A little peppery, with some near pineapple.
Taste - It's got a real solid malt back. But it does bring that grapefruit tang as well. That pineapplish taste shows up on the back end. The hop bitterness sits nicely on the tongue.
Mouthfeel - Nice and crisp. A tad thin, perhaps. Lacking a little body. Still, it's very nice.
Drinkability - Pretty good. It's a nice drinker, but that bitterness lingering around makes it not the easiest.
This is a nice beer. A good balance, some nice flavors, a good pepperiness. However, it's not totally lighting my world on fire.
04-03-2009 03:59:23 | More by callmescraps
4.65/5 rDev +12.6%
Thanks to Dubbercody who sent me this treat, along with a bunch of other fantastic stuff, in a trade that made the angels sin & the demons smile.
This f'in' rocks. The beer is pretty, & the hops assault upon my nose left it reeling. If you've never seen a nose reeling, I highly recommend it.
Damn. This is fantastic stuff. The nasty nose follows up with a hop-grapefruit assault on my tongue, throat, & tonsils, leaving me full of bitterness (in a good way, I mean). The trail of anger this leaves tearing down into my stomach is awe-inspiring.
This is why Deschutes has taken its place in my top three breweries. They know that to make a DIPA, you don't "balance" it, you hop the holy shit out of it & try to blow people's minds. Mission accomplished, in the most non-GWB way possible.
Mouthfeel is good except I think it's searing the skin off the top of my mouth. Ditto on drinkability, this stuff could cut through the clutter of anything you may have drunk, eaten, consumed, or otherwise had crammed in your mouth in the past twenty-four hours. Toothpaste? Hah! I have Hop Henge!
Fantastic beer. Long live Hop Henge! I'm only sad that this is the only bottle I had in my possession, now I need to go get more.
04-03-2009 02:36:19 | More by maximum12
4.5/5 rDev +9%
The hop henge was poured into the snifter and and had a nice seam foam head, not large but tend to see that with on tap pours. It was a reddish brown color and looked delicious.
The smell was sweet condensed hop goodness. The malt profile shows up right away on the first sip. Good malt backbone. Grapefruit hoppiness makes its presence known. Bitterness lingers on the tongue with a slight burn. Ibu's are 87 according to the menu and at 8.7 it is no slouch. It was very balanced with a tinge of aggressiveness.
04-02-2009 18:04:43 | More by cswhitehorse
3.7/5 rDev -10.4%
On tap at Hamilton's Tavern (San Diego, CA) on 3/20/09. Served in a pint glass.
Pours a crystal clear amber with a thin head of creamy white head. Retention is just OK. Kind of a fizzy look around the edges, not leaving a whole lot of lacing back at all. Just some thin spotty stuff here and there. The aroma is floral and spicy, with a deep tang to it from robust tropical fruits and thick smelling bready sweet notes.
The taste is resinous and spicy up front, with a big backbone of sticky citrus and caramel malts. Finishes with a good bit of tang and bitterness that lingers. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a big and beefy alcohol feel to it. Lower carbonation gives this a more viscous feel, that when mixed with the big sweetness, bitterness, and heat that is present, emits a somewhat off-putting medicinal feel at times.
Not quite sure what happened here, as I really enjoyed this more in the bottle. Much more heat came out here on draft, which really inhibited the body and drinkibility for me. I'm still glad to have given it a shot, as Deschutes on tap is a rare find in my world.
04-02-2009 16:59:34 | More by Kegatron
3.75/5 rDev -9.2%
22 oz bomber picked up from Bottleworks in Seattle.
Appearance and smell were both spot on. Nice color, good creamy head with decent retention. Smells like you want your west coast hop bombs to. Pine, grapefruit, some pineapple, and I can even tell there is some malt around.
After my first few sips, I am convinced that this is the most bitter beer in history. Balance usually is not all that important to me, and I love a good unapologetic hop bomb, but this was just bitter. Not hoppy bitter, just bitter. Like eating citrus rinds or chewing medication. Also, very dry and chalky in the finish. Almost charcoal like. Also, some spicy notes that remind me of either rye or German hops, neither of which do I believe are actually ingredients. Balance does come in as it warms, with some honey sweetness, but its too little too late.
The mouthfeel of the body is decent, but the chalky finish knocks this down, as well as drinkability.
04-02-2009 01:52:57 | More by mjd83goblue
3.73/5 rDev -9.7%
A: Pours a decent shade of amber. Moderate two finger head with just as moderate retention and pretty decent lacing.
S: HOPS and citrus.
T: Hops jumps right out at you at first. There are definitely some citrusy and piny flavors in there as well. And an odd bitter malty finish.
M: Has an unexpectedly thick mouthfeel. Light carbonation and moderate to strong bitterness.
D: I think this beer is right down the middle of the road as far as drinkability goes. Not as drinkable as less hoppy brews, but more drinkable than a lot of IPA's & DIPA's that I've had.
04-01-2009 00:12:27 | More by djaeon
4.33/5 rDev +4.8%
Enjoyed in a tulip.
A: A finger of frothy off-white head over an amber and copper body. Decent retention, though not as much lacing as I've seen in other beers of this style.
S: Super ripe mandarin oranges and a light aroma of the necessary florals and herbals. Inviting balance.
T: Flavorful hops tht are kept in check by a very malty base. Roasted notes pull through as an afterthought. A piney flavor is reminiscent of SN brews. Ends in bitter, dry hops.
M: Lighter body, but still "muscular" as promised by Deschutes. Beer leaves a bitterness throughout the mouth.
D: The great presence of malts make me think of barleywine rather than DIPA. This is definitely a sipper, and a darn good one. Deschutes, you never cease to amaze me.
03-30-2009 05:22:16 | More by washburnkid
4.63/5 rDev +12.1%
Serving Type: On Tap, oversize snifter, Deschutes Brew Pub, Bend.
Presentation: One and a Half-inch head, disipates into thin layer of foam.
Thick lacing down the glass.
Initial impression: Fresh, fresh hop smell. Caramel malts. Bitter burn on the tongue, and a flash of sweetness.
Mouthfeel is smooth, honey-like. Finish is a lingering hop-mint.
As it warms: Lavender and honey emerge.
Mouthfeel: Detect less burn, more honey and lavender mixing with the hops.
Nose: First: Fresh Hops. I cannot emphasize enough
the phrase "fresh hops." This beer smells like a hop bud, if you have ever smelled one (they handed them out on the tour of the Deschutes
Brewery, earlier in the day,).
The smell and taste both can be overbearing initially,
but please patient: a balance comes eventually; once it warms, the lavender, honey, and caramel emerge. This beer will kick your taste buds' ass, before singing them a sweet lullaby.
Overall: With a hearty whiff and a sip swirled on the tongue---given proper time to open up---it's a divine
beer, a first experience you'll always remember.
03-30-2009 05:20:53 | More by zachisspeaking
4.35/5 rDev +5.3%
*BATCH #3*(crucial to note as Batch #1 and #2 were very different monsters). Poured into my Block 15 pint glass, which is ironic (inside joke).
Appearance- 2 Finger, off-white head. Looks nice and creamy as it slowly recedes to half a finger and lingers. I'm going to call the body a harvest orange hue. Not sure if that makes sense, don't really care. The lacing left as the pint glass empties is very impressive.
Smell- Juicy citrus fruits dominate, and spicy pine looms in the background. Wow, this smells great. Singes the nostrils with hoppy goodness.
Taste- Wow, again! Fuck me, GreenWBush wasn't lying when he said this beer is BITTER. The roof of my mouth tingles from intense hop bitterness as soon as it enters my mouth, and then the resiny, bitter hops spread to the sides of my tongue and linger. The citrus hops have turned from juicy in the nose, to zesty/rindy in the mouth, and the pine is now the dominate force. There's a bit of sweet maltiness that shows up for a split second, but it is washed away by spicy hops. The more I drink, the sweeter it gets. There's still a lot of perceived bitterness going on, but it subsides a bit, probably from numbing my tongue on the previous sips.
MF- Medium carbonation with quite the full, creamy body. Some heat lingers in the mouth, and I'm not sure if that's the alcohol making itself known, or just the intensity of the hops.
Drinkability- Very drinkable for the alcohol level, and the bitterness level. I paired the second half with a bourbon white cheddar, and the pairing was sploogetastic. I'm not sure if this is better than batch #2 or not, but it's damn good. That's for sure. Show me a better 22oz DIPA for the price. I dare you!
03-30-2009 02:32:38 | More by Reino
3.9/5 rDev -5.6%
A - Golden brown with the slightest ruby tinge. Big, foamy off-white head. Head has excellent retention and lacing. Fair number of bubbles quickly shooting to the top of the glass.
S - Big aroma of pine and citrus/tropical fruits. Fresh pine needles are the strongest smell, but there are notes of grapefruit, pineapple and just a little lemon mixed in. Faint sweetness lingering underneath to provide some balance.
T - Light toffee sweetness initially quickly matched by a sharp bitterness. Bitterness is very dry and does not have much flavor with it. A little grapefruit. Alcohol is noticeable and provides quite the warming sensation. Dissapointing taste after such a remarkable aroma. Still a good tasting DIPA, just not as great as I was hoping for.
M/D - Medium bodied with a sharp, mouth dominanting bitterness. The bitterness stays with you. Alcohol is strong enough to knock the drinkability down a notch.
03-29-2009 02:55:30 | More by ckeegan04
3.68/5 rDev -10.9%
Color is amber with a small white head. Decent Belgian lacing. Aroma was mostly citrus with some herbal notes. Well balanced with a toasted malt background. Overall though I thought it was closer to an IPA than a double IPA. Seemed to be lacking the big malt and hop character of a double IPA.
03-28-2009 18:30:59 | More by bigbelcher
4.38/5 rDev +6.1%
Wow!!! This is a very impressive DIPA. Pours a clear amber with a medium sized white head. Head retention is low (8.75 abv) but there is a huge amount of lacing.
Smell is strong and pronounced - hops and grapefruit -
The taste is very good as well. Grapefruit and hoppy goodness (nice and bitter).
Mouthfeel is very remarkable. It is fairly rich. The hops bite is here but there is a pillowy lightness (a Helles DIPA??)
Drinkability is excellent. I would love to try this one on tap. I could get really wasted on this beer if I didn't know its strength. A really nice blend of hops and drinkability.
03-28-2009 01:34:15 | More by JayQue
4.18/5 rDev +1.2%
22oz single as an EXTRA thanks to JohnGalt1!
A: Clear, dark copper color, with a huge head about two inches worth of tan foam, excellent lacing as it starts to recede. The head is quite dense. Good looking beer!
S: Spicy, citrus hop character is really in your face, faint underlying malt sweetness, but this one really focuses on the hops, as it should. Definitely a good smelling beer, a little light for the style, but yeah, this smells good.
T: Not at all what I remembered from the first time, or what I expected. Big time soapy/citrusy hop kick right up front, with a faint maltiness towards the end. Big time bitterness, lots of hop resins in this one. Malt is really subdued and caramel in flavor, lingers way way in the background though. Quite tasty.
M: A little thin in the mouth, very dry though, a little alcohol heat too. Big time hop puckering. Just a little thin, and that knocks it down some points for me.
D: Pretty fair on the D aspect for this beer. I really like the hop characteristic, its a little bit of a tongue burner, but nothing I haven't handled before. I could easily crack open a second one if it were available. Tasty beer!
03-28-2009 00:04:24 | More by pokesbeerdude
4.2/5 rDev +1.7%
Acquired through a trade with Docer. Thanks again
Have been recovering from a sinus infection for about 2 weeks now, and I have tried to limit my beer intake, and have refused to do a review, due to my inability to smell, and deteriorated taste. I think I am over it, but this is the first I have tried to review since my PtE. Here goes.
L: Bomber, Batch #2 0754 2009 E is what the label reads. BA bottle opener makes it go ffsss,
First thought is that this beer is much lighter than I expected. Deschutes has it in a brown bottle and it appears quite dark on the inside. Oh well. A beautiful red brown, with small head, probably due to my crappy pouring skills (really need to work on that). Clear. Head is still lingering, but small amount of carbonation noticed.
S: immediately upon opening, there was a wiff of something that invaded my nose. It reminds me of the orange V8 Splash drink. Sorry for the comparison Deschutes, but it is what came to mind. Seems like an apricot, high hop note, blend with some other citrus thrown in Hops make this wonderful, as you can definitely smell this, but you need to look.
M: thick bodied, Filling the mouth all over. Playing with it results in little carbonation. Tongue tingle is minimal, and there is little alcohol bite. You definitely notice the alcohol, but the bite is subtle. There is an all-over bitterness left in your mouth, lingers, and lets you know that you just tasted something wonderful.
T: Hops. That is the first thought. Well, creamy hops. There is traces of your malt at the end of the swallow. I don't know where to go with this. I think I have a very young palette, and all the subtleties are lost on me in this beer. It tastes amazing, and I could drink it every day, but really all I get is some piney citrus and a tail of malt. I thought I tasted something resembling a heavy carmel stout there, but have since been unable to replicate. There's something at the beginning of your swallow too, but again, placing finger seems difficult.
D: Would recommend this to anyone that has a taste for hops. 95 IBUs, and seems so complex that I am lost. The smells tells me that there is an amazing door, somewhere in this flavor maze, but my tongue can't read a map, so I will have to wait until he finishes his hooked-on-phonics. My apologies to Deschutes, and all others for not being as in depth as I like to be with my reviews, I think that my sinus infection might have hindered me way too much on this one. Or I'm just making excuses for being a neophyte. Highly recommend, and am very thankful that I got to try it.
03-27-2009 14:38:45 | More by JoBoTo
3.7/5 rDev -10.4%
A: Clear copper/amber color; almost orange. Poured a 2 finger off-white head with good retention. Even lacing around the class. Lightly decanted continuously.
S: Big piney hops and grainy malts. Overall, a very sweet nose. Alcohol in the background.
T: Big pine and citrus hops; much more so than the smell. Big malts dominate the middle. Finish is bitter and sweet.
M: Heavy side of medium body. Ample carbonation. Warming alcohol betrays the ABV.
D: Good taste, remarkable balance. Uni-bomber at best (one and done...at least for tonight)
03-25-2009 15:36:50 | More by Haybeerman
4.35/5 rDev +5.3%
Another great brew from Deschutes Brewery. Poured a dark orange color with a thin white head, and plenty of lacing on the glass. Highly citrus and slightly floral aroma. Rich, largely citrus and slightly herbal flavor with decent amount of malt to balance all the hop goodness. Do I detect a note of mint in there. Really smooth, drinkable brew.
03-25-2009 04:01:45 | More by RunDWP
4.3/5 rDev +4.1%
Appearance: Right off the bat, this is one of the most beautiful looking beers I've ever poured. It's the most amazing dark burnt orange color and is virtually clear. There is a stupid amount of lacing that hangs on to the side of the glass, which is accompanied by a nice soft off-white three finger head. This is really a remarkable looking beer.
Smell: Oh boy! Right out of the glass I get an enormous amount of pungent and fragrant hops. There is a nice amount of grapefruit, but any other citrus component you'd find in other IPAs is virtually non-existent. Point blank, Hop Henge is huge on hops. Let me tell you...this beer smells AMAZING! Hop lovers will rejoice in its glory.
Taste: This is going to sound completely ironic considering what I've said so far, but the taste is probably the weakest aspect of this beer. This by no means is to say it's anything short of brilliant. But it doesn't have as hoppy of a flavor right up front as the aromas would lead you to believe. The bitterness is more prevalent than the citrus and hop components. However, the back end of the drink really delivers a nice amount of hops. Subtlety is key here I suppose.
Mouthfeel: I'll make this section simple and easy for you - Hop Henge coats the mouth about as nicely as any beer I've had. It's not overly sweet or bitter. It's not heavy, yet it's certainly not light. It's balanced extremely well and that's really all you can ask for from a good beer.
Overall: This beer is not as "experimental" as the label would suggest. This is a good thing, though. Hop Henge is an extremely solid IPA. In fact, it's perhaps one of the best I've had; my score is definitely proof of that. It just does about everything right. This one was also an especially nice treat because it was driven back from Denver for me. I will definitely be on the lookout for more Deschutes beers in the future. A replacement for this is also going on my wish list.
03-25-2009 03:29:01 | More by amneziak
3.98/5 rDev -3.6%
Paid $4.69 for a bomber from BevMo in San Jose, CA. According to the BevMo description, it is new as of this year and includes a new hop strain that has yet to be named/disclosed. Certainly a great marketing ploy that got me to buy it. But hell, a new DIPA from Deschutes? Certainly I'm going to give it a try!
I pour into a smaller snifter with two pours. Leaves a nice, frothy, white, inch-long head after a standard pour. Transparent amber/orange color. Some carbonation visually present. Pretty good head retention and thick lacing.
Standard quality IPA/DIPA; pine, grapefruit and citrus. Pretty quality ingredients, but with the stiff competition on the NW Coast right now for this style, there certainly are better.
A well balanced DIPA that isn't overly hopped by the complaints I've heard from others. Strong malt backing. I'm more into the fresh, dank hop bombs, but if you are looking for something better balanced, this would be your ticket. Alcohol very well masked.
The mouth is alive, smooth and creamy. Medium to full bodied. Perfectly carbonated. Nice finish leaving a well balanced hop aftertaste. Good drinkability.
Certainly glad I tried it. I won't be getting this again as there are better, but as I said before, I'd highly recommend this to someone looking for a well-balanced DIPA.
03-25-2009 01:50:03 | More by ibbjamin
3.6/5 rDev -12.8%
Pours a clear dark copper color with a thick tan head which sticks around a while and leaves good lacing. Nice looking brew.
The aroma is the familiar grapefruity citrus and pine.
Taste is also the standard hoppy citrus with a bit of malt to temper the bitterness somewhat, although it still had a finish on the bitter end of the scale. Nothing new here, but decent for this type beer.
Mouthfeel seemed on the thicker side at first, yet after it was in the mouth for a moment and then going down the throat, almost felt as if it was on the thin side. A strange sensation. Also, it was a very sticky beer. My lips felt almost glued together.
IPA fans will probably enjoy this one, although there are better brews of that style around.
03-25-2009 00:40:03 | More by JBogan
3.58/5 rDev -13.3%
Pours a golden orange with large off-white head and some good lacing. Hop aroma is lacking big time. What is there is citrus and pine. A bready/toasty character malt aroma. Flavor displays a bit more hop character than the nose, but still not outstanding. Orange and pine. Bitterness is through the roof. Almost harsh. Some caramel notes and sweet. Alcoholic/warming. Medium-full in body. Bitterness is a bit out of hand, and the hop aroma/flavor are holding this back from being a great IIPA.
03-21-2009 18:54:13 | More by iasanlee
Hop Henge Experimental IPA from Deschutes Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 2,053 ratings.