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Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My AleRobert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale

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very good

1,811 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,811
Reviews: 570
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 13.49%
Wants: 115
Gots: 335 | FT: 7
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jsanford on 03-15-2011

Hellhound is a super-hoppy ale that hits 100 IBUs in the brewhouse and 10% ABV. It's dry-hopped with 100% Centennial hops at a rate of 100 kilos per 100 barrel brew-length. Can you tell we're stoked for this mighty musical centennial?

To accentuate and magnify the citrusy notes of the Centennial hops (and as a shoutout to Robert Johnson's mentor Blind Lemon Jefferson), we add dried lemon peel and flesh to the whirlpool.

58 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,811 | Reviews: 570 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lordofthewiens
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 2011 1
750 ml bottle in a snifter.

Cherry amber color, slight haze. Medium-sized off white head.

Lots of citrus in the aroma: mostly lemon and lemon zest, but also orange and tangerine. Some sweet malt. A hint of alcohol.

Taste followed aroma. A lot of citrus, with citrus hops. Sweet malt. Alcohol not detectable; would never know it was 10% ABV.

Nice balance.

Dangerously drinkable.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

dark amber in color with a light amount of cloudiness and haze. Rich looking with a nice head of about two inches in height and a nice fade into sticky side glass lacing.

The aroma was unreal. Rich fruity notes of peach and orange, hints of lemon and tangerine, so sweet and rich I was beside myself. Not the pungent bitter hops, the light, sweet, fruity notes that I loved. The flavor was more of the same, super sweet light orange and tangerine notes, hints of pineapple and light biscuit malts in the backround. Long sweet, and bitter,dry finish was superb as well. Smooth, mellow carbonation was done just right with an ease of drinkability that had me very impressed with every bit of the 10+ percent no where to be found.

Photo of doughanson78
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Slightly hazy orangish copper color. One finger, super rocky, white head with excellent retention and

S: Grapefruit and orange peel upfront. Slight lemon zest. Bready malts with hints of caramel and honey. Slight floral notes and a very mild spiciness. Alcohol is detectable also. Complex but pretty muted aroma.

T: Sweet caramel upfront. A citrusy bitterness through the middle, with emphasis on the peels of the fruit. Citrus is taken over by deep floral notes. A honey-lemon finish along with a fairly big alcohol presence.

M: Light to medium bodied. Light creaminess. Medium carbonation. Very warm, bordering on hot.

O: This would be a great beer if the alcohol wasn't so in your face. The honey-lemon finish is nice but gets muted quick by alcohol. Don't know if aging this would help, or just mess it up. Maybe I'll grab a bottle and see.

Photo of Jason
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml brown bottle with a bottled on date.

Color: Brass, clear w/ a beautiful froth on top.

Smell: Herbal, lemon from rind to juice, buttery ghost, bready, sweet, golden raisins and light broth.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Super smooth, fuller body. Fierce alcohol, solid malt foundation, lemon theatrics. Peel talks to grain, alcohol humbly on its own ... warming everything, toasty but not hot. Citric and mint hops, fresh hay maltiness. Lemon lingers and so does the grain and alcohol.

Overall: Hellhound has a lot to say but only whispers a little bit with every sip, lots of sips to take so I'm pretty sure I got the whole gist of it.

Photo of warnerry
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours orange-brown with a bit of noticeable sediment. One finger of off-white head fades pretty quickly to a collar but leaves some lacing behind.

S - Lemon rind and juice dominate the aroma, though some pine hops do come through. A bit of malt also present, and some sweet florals as well.

T - Bitter up front with both pine and lemon bitterness. Lots of lemon, again rind and pulp. A little one note, but I'm enjoying it. I can taste and feel some malt, but can't put specific flavors to it. Some noticeable alcohol in the taste.

M - Medium mouthfeel with good carbonation. Finishes bitter but not clean.

O - Overall probably not worthy of Robert Johnson, but a pretty good beer. Has bitterness in spades, but missing a more balanced flavor profile. Glad I tried it, but not sorry this is a one-off.

Photo of BARFLYB
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap at Hulmeville Inn.

Robert Johnson Hellhound looks a lighter shade of DIPA. The liquid is a straw yellow color with some faint, well, more yellow in the body all around. The liquid is pretty clear, but the head could use some more ummpphh. Sparse bubbles that leave no glide.

Smell is bursting out the pants with lemon juice and aint no fooling, it's a lemon bomb over citrus scent. Lemon juice with some pilsner/pale malt. That's all I get really.

Taste of of a lemoned up saison with a lot of bitterness towards the end. More pine bitter than citrus bitter if im thinking left coast beer. The lemon is just big and is the main attraction. Small amounts of pilsner malt barely make a dent at the lemon and whatever bittering hops they used.

Feel is a steady medium. Carbed up nice with a nice little tart hit towards the end.It's probably a bitter tart more than a tart tart if that makes sense(it doesent). Glad I tried it, I would never even try to tackle a whole bottle of this on it's own. 8oz's is plenty.

Photo of ianjsullivan
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

ST: 750ml poured into an oversized wine glass. The bottle has a bottled in date (2011) and lists the alcohol percentage. However, it does not have a fresh by date.

A: Hazy dark amber with nice carbonation and noticeable sediment. It has a half-a-finger deep fluffy white head that disappears within thirty seconds leaving a strong circle of lacing and patches of small foamy bubbles on top of the beer.

S: Malt, bubblegum, goat cheese, lemon, metal, and pine.

T: Malt and lemon rind, pine, grapefruit, bubblegum. Very bitter, citrus finish and floral (the finish stays for a long time), though there is a slight sweetness.

M: Heavy and dry. The carbonation lifts the beer, but it does not have enough to add crispness and cleanness.

O: Though lemon was clearly used, the great amount of citrus acid and bitterness almost takes away from any actual flavor. The beer is not clean and the finish sticks to the throat and tongue. It is heavy and good use more cutting carbonation. There is malt meant to balance but it barely succeed. However, this is a double or imperial IPA. Simply put, the beer is not supposed to be very balanced. Rather, it is supposed to be hoppy without apology. Those looking for lots of hops and citrus will find their place with this beer. If you, however, desire balance, buy another beer.

Photo of StoneTSR
3.36/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Binny's on Dempster in Skokie the day it arrived, have not had a chance to get back to my notes and write the review until now.

APPEARANCE: Light, golden in color and seems very innocent, but I have a feeling that at 10% it won’t turn out that way. A nice head developed with a fairly aggressive pour and remained intact for a few minutes before settling to just a thin yeasty layer resting on top. Pretty solid lacing clung to about 30% of the opposite side of the glass.

SMELL: Subtle lemon, a little pine and a good dose of dry hops in the nose.

TASTE: This was not nearly the beer I expected. I was anticipating more of a lighter, crisp and lemon-like hop bomb, but instead the Robert Johnson is a rich, sugary malt-bomb with a nice dose of hops and a touch of bitter lemon to balance it out.

MOUTHFEEL: This is rich and sits a bit heavy, but goes down smooth. It’s slightly carbonated and creamy. Not bad, but again, not at all what I expected from this beer.

OVERALL: Very easy to drink for a 10%er, but as mentioned above, it does sit a little heavy. I’m happy to have tried this, but if it were available on a regular basis it would just be a once-in-a-while change of pace.

Photo of uustal
3.86/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an absolutely beautiful dark, opaque orange with a two-finger off-white head. Hint of yellow in the foam as well. Nice lacing and retention. Great looking brew. However, that's where the superlative praise ends. Aroma of citrus zest and pine. The flavor beings with a mix of bitter pine and citrus hops. Strong malt backbone, hints of toffee and sticky caramel. Boozy presence as well. Ends with a decent amount of lemon zest. Decent flavor, but doesn't get to a point of cohesion.

Photo of Retail1LO
3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a bottle of this alongside bottles of Sah'tea and Theobroma. This was a nice, light beer. Very citrusy with strong hints of lemon in both the smell and finish. Beautiful effervescent head atop the pint I poured. Don't know if I'd go out of my way to buy more, but I enjoyed the offering regardless.

Photo of womencantsail
3.08/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks for this one Jason.

A: The beer pours an amber color with a finger of white head.

S: Citrus peels dominate the aroma, especially grapefruit. Some sweet citrus notes in there, too. A fair amount of piney hops are also there along with some caramel malts and toffee.

T: The beer is just bitter, and that's about it. Not too much in terms of the hop flavor, maybe some pine. Perhaps a hint of tangerine peel. Some slight caramel sweetness on the back end as well as a bit of pine sol.

M: Medium in body with a medium to high carbonation.

O: Just way too bitter without featuring much hop flavors. At least it wasn't super boozy like a lot of Dogfish Head beers can be.

Photo of Phelps
3.23/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle full of the first batch of 2011 into a tulip.

Gorgeous deep honey-orange, cloudy and speckled with tiny particles. The head is about an inch high, creamy and yellow-white. It pops away slowly, leaving vertical pillars of lace.

Citrusy. Pithy grapefruit, caramel, honey, biscuits. Lemon peel is there, but it's not too big. Lots of alcohol and bitterness, but the hops aren’t as bright as they should be, since this beer was dry-hopped with centennial.

Heavily bitter and heavily boozy. Beneath the alcohol flavor is grapefruit peel, bright lemon and honey. Hints of caramel, overripe orange, snappy lemon peel and floral notes are also in there. It improves greatly as it warms, but there’s just too much alcohol.

A moderate amount of bubbles poke the tongue inside the medium-light body. Alcohol gives the mouthfeel tongue-numbing heat and I get warmth in the throat as well.

Hellhound is obviously 10 percent alcohol and obviously 100 IBUs. It’s abrasive, big, and unsmooth. Dogfish should've taken a note from Bitches Brew on this one and toned things down a bit.

Photo of SuperSpy
3.71/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A hazy golden amber with a rocky off-white head. Big thick lace. I really like the look of this beer.

Some citrus, white pepper, pale malts in the aroma. Smells tasty. Not overly complicated, not too simple. Good.

A heavier beer that smoothly glides over the tongue. Hoppy, fruity and boozy. Herbal and floral hops with a hint of citrus are very powerful at the start, with a sweet taste of peaches and alcohol in the middle. A great balance of malt sweetness and hop flavors finish the beer and then I'm left with a floral, semi-dry aftertaste.

Overall this is a very tasty beer. Less hoppy than the typical Imperial IPA, but still a good beer with some interesting flavors.

Photo of Spider889
3.23/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at the Brewpub in DE.

I was looking forward to this, lemon sounded like a fun addition to 90 minute.

Tasted along side regular 90 minute. Hellhound is a slightly lighter shade than the dark copper of 90 minute.

Smelled quite citrusy. Both orange and grapefruit show that some choice hops were used in this brew. Not sure if I really could detect lemon, but the peel definitely did add a slight medicinal bent to the aroma.

The taste produces and even greater medicinal quality. Not quite aspirin, but more along the lines of chalky pills that were chewed when they were meant to be swallowed.

There is some mild lemon zestiness to the flavor though, which was welcome and refreshing. The beer is bitter, maybe moreso than 90 minute, but this is the result of the strong bitter pith from all of the fruit peels instead of the hops themselves.

The alcohol is a bit more hot than in regular 90 minute. Otherwise, the carbonation is strong and lively.

Overall not as good as I was hoping. the medicinal qualities of the lemon peel sort of ruined the experience for me a bit.

Photo of thegodfather2701
3.91/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Honey colored with a thick off white head that leaves some nice cascading and lacing. There are some tiny floaties as well.

S-Citrussy hops, loads of lemon, some white pepper. It has a funky nose.

T-Lemon, peach, caramel malt backbone. It is semi-sweet and extremely well balanced.

M-Nice mouthfeel, not to thick or overly carbonated.

D-Very drinkable due to its balance. However, the high abv. cuts into its drinkability.

Overall, probably the most balanced double ipa I've ever had, but delicious none the less. I'm glad I had the chance to drink it.

Photo of turnstile
3.77/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Copper/dark golden and hazy in appearance with a substantial head failing to form. Carbonation is evident as a few clusters of bubbles and a ring of foam around the edge of the glass.

Aroma is hop-forward with plenty of clean floral and piney notes and a nasal passage-clearing alcohol scent. Lemon is evident but struggles to compete against the hop bouquet, and becomes more apparent as the brew warms. Sweet maltiness also detectable. The use of Centennial hops is a great choice to complement the lemon aroma. Huge ABV is apparent not only in the aroma but in the taste, too. Decent malt backbone, well-balanced flavor and clean and non-abrasive bitterness in the finish. Very enjoyable with a somewhat drying finish. Full-bodied and creamy (but slightly flat) carbonation with a slightly syrupy finish.

A good 2x IPA and hits the marks for the technical aspects, but it lacks serious complexity and the booze factor is a little overwhelming. I'll be looking for this one again before it's gone for good.

Photo of TheStove
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a pour of this at City Beer - SF.

Pours nice and opaque orange/peach color. Served in a tulip it almost looks as if one is holding a piece of fruit.

Smells and drinks like an IPA, there is a light spice interplay with the initial hop flavors. The fun comes in the end of the sip where citrus flavors of the hop give way to the taste of lemon candy. Starts to be a fun beverage as the tasting of a balanced hop complexity gives way to the repeating lemon candy flavor. As glass is half done, lemon fades into light citrus flavors of the hops and is almost unnoticeable.

On the fence about this one. Given some of the better IPAs out there, this one kind of seems like a one trick pony with the obvious lemon flavor at the end, however it is difficult to deny that this was a fun beer to drink.

Photo of celticfutblclub
3.71/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml meet pint glass.

comes in bright and cheery (orange style) sporting a nice white head three fingers deep that laces very well and has some great retention. smells of dough oily hops and pine come through. sweet malts are up front followed immediately by a big hop bang. orange peel, pine, resiny hops round out the hop flavor. lots of carbonation medium bodied with lots of puckering and mild alcohol feel on the throat (for 10%) lend a good mouth feel to this. a very good offering from dogfish head and very glad i splurged on this one.

Photo of Digimaika2
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a bronze/copper colour with a high foamy head that recedes to a nice blanket. Good lacing down the glass.

S: Pleasing earthy-grass hop notes along with some biscuity malts. Quite a bit of sweet honey aroma. Faint hints of lemon.

T: Bready malts with quite a bit of caramel and honey sweetness. Hop notes are a bit more subdued but present in the middle. Finishes with a bit of lemony zest. Overall nice but quite sugary-sweet. Alcohol is noticeable and comes across pretty strong.

M: Full with an oilyness and fairly viscous.

D: Not sure I would pursue this again, but a decent Dogfish Head offering. I think I was looking (and hoping) for more of a lemon kick in this, but instead found more of a sugary sweetness.

Photo of Robtobfest
2.81/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I had high hopes for this one.
Appearance was pretty. Has some great head retention wit the aggressive pour. Golden in color.

Smell, what where is the lemon, heavy citrus element that this should have. All I smell is alcohol.

Taste is all booze. I am so dissapointed with this! It reminds me of my dissapointment with Hoptimum. Over the top booze overpowers everything else.

Overall, not only would I not seek this out, but i'd run away from it. The only good thing about this beer is the artwork on the bottle. Heard the original recipe had this coming in much loer in ABV. Should have stuck with that.

Photo of DeanMoriarty
3.87/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a 750ml bottle in a trade with Dawson's Liquor in Severna Park, MD and poured it into a 9oz. rocks glass - thanks fellas!

A: Pours a fairly clean, dark honey-like hue, with a massive white head that lingers, leaving a ton of lacing in its tracks - very nice!

S: Extremely hoppy - soapy citrus rinds, which the prevalent lemon zest lends well to, finishing with a hint of biscuit and other earthy goodness in the mix as well.

T: On point with the nose, but the lemon gets a bit out of control wiping out the hop entirely, and unfortunately there is a ton of booze from start to finish that really distracts the finer qualities of this ale - reminds me of a holiday drink my mother-in-law makes each year called Limoncello (grain alcohol, lemon rinds and sugar) very tasty but too much heat! Kind of a weird DIPA if you ask me (???).

M/D: Medium bodied and well carbonated with a ton of resiny hoppiness that lingers well beyond each sip, finishes crisp and clean as a good DIPA should. Drinkability is alright, but way too much weird lemon zest and hot booze. I finished it, but man it took some nursing!

3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml shared into tulip, from notes, consumed within two weeks of 2011 release.

A: A very bright and straw colored body, white head with good levels of carbonation and head retention.

S: The floral aspect of this brew show subtle hints of the lemon and a major role played by the hops that are very piney and citrus in character.

T/M: The beer is a very nice IPA, but the pine does seem to be in the fore front of the overall taste. The malt body is found in the texture of the mouthfeel, but does not make it past the hop profile. Carbonation levels are spot on for style and the finish is indeed hoppy.

O: Not too much multi-dementionality to this one, just a solid, yet typical IPA and classic DFH hop and yeast characters.

Photo of ckollias
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed this bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Golden yellow ale with a thick 2-finger foam that quickly dissipates into a fine wispy lace. Leaves a nice trail all the way down the glass.

S: This beer has a lemon zesty hoppy aroma. It is not overwhelming but rather very mild and pleasant to the nostrils.

T: Great zesty lemon flavor crossed the palate. It is smooth and slightly bitter at the same time. This alcohol is present but masked nicely by the lemon and hops. It has good balance and is very drinkable.

M: Medium body and carbonation

O: Interesting double IPA with a lemon twist. High ABV @ 10% but an easy drinkable bber. Another great beer by dogfish head but nothing I would pick up on a regular basis.

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.15/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a clear a golden color with good carbonation and a small white cap

S: Citrus and thats about it

T: Starts out with a hint at pine and lemon zest. Some other light fruits but not much on hops.

M: Well carbonated, nice feel, clean but the hops are subdued and played out by the lemon and citrus

O: Average

Photo of beerbully
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As a big fan of RJ and lover of the blues I was excited to buy this beer.

Poured into a pint glass

A-Copper hue with a thick foamy 1 1/2 inch head that hangs around for a while and leaves thick lacing. Lots of bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass

S-floral and extremely citrusy. Smells unbelievablely good. Grapefruit / orange / mango

T- quite different from its smell. Quite surprised with the initial taste as I was expecting something different based on the aroma. Can taste the lemon which I didn't pick up in the nose. Strong flavor in the back of my throat. Aftertaste mellows out and leaves a taste in the mouth which is closer to the aroma.

M-Beer has good body and coats the mouth. Quite refreshing. Good summer brew.

O-Smells like a very citrus DIPA but throws a curveball upon the first sip. Certainly can taste the lemon. This beer seems to have me searching for more than what is there. For me, the aftertaste is better than the initial sip. Flavor hangs in the mouth long after the beer has been swallowed. Happy to have scored a bottle and have tasted it which was not the case with Bitches Brew

Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 1,811 ratings.