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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,795 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,795
Reviews: 564
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 13.49%
Wants: 110
Gots: 319 | 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:
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 added by: jsanford on 03-15-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,795 | Reviews: 564 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of xnicknj
3.55/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750mL bottle poured into tulip

Pours a golden amber color with some brighter hues in the light. A fluffy white head fades slowly, leaving some splotchy lacing on the glass.

Scents of bitter hops mixed with strong citrus notes in the nose. Strong lemon with zest and rind, hints of caramel and malt with honey.

Decent hop profile up front with bitterness and citrus. Plenty of lemon with rind and pith. Caramel, honey, and bread crust in the malt backbone. Finishes hoppy with some alcohol bite.

Medium bodied, decent carbonation, drinks pretty well, but definitely not worth the $10 price tag.

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

Poured into a chalice and got a finger of froth that dissipated quickly. A lot of bubbles running up the sides. The color is a clear ruby/orange. Nose is a lot of lemon hop and spice. Sweet caramel with a lot of the lemon carrying through. The flavor is a huge bite of lemon citrus hops. Some light malty body but a lot of lemon. The lemon moves from bitter sharp to tangy like lemonade.

Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.05/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Matt (DIPAbrewer) for the bottle.

Appearance -- Pours a honey amber hue with two stiff fingers of lily-white head. Lots of craggy lace. Looks good!

Smell -- Kooky, to say the least. Gobs of caramel, lemon honey tea, pine resin, and harsh leafy hops. Not something I was wafting more than once or twice.

Taste -- Big honey malt sweetness, assertive leafy hop bitterness, and strong lemon flesh flavor that, over time, began to become reminiscent of cough lozenges. Finish is bitter leafy vegetation and lemon. Additionally, the alcohol is highly perceptible.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-full body with moderate carbonation. It felt syrupy.

Overall -- It's okay. The hops were definitely assertive, but perhaps too assertive for their particular profile. The lemon was interesting, but over time it became distracting.

With a few tweaks (lower IBU, less lemon slices) this could potentially be worth making regularly.

Photo of Gambac
3.63/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass

Nice dull orange, approaching an amber. Decent head retention, lots of lacing from both pours

Get a little lemon, not as much as expected. Definitely more alcohol than expected, really did expect more lemon than hops. Oh well.

A little bit of sweetness on the taste, accompanied by some lemon bite and some hops. Finishes fairly drying for an ale, not as much complexity as other DFH brews.

Medium mouthfeel, if that. For whatever reason, this feels a little bit light, not sure if that's the lemon rind or not. Either way, expected a little more finish. Sometimes, going doing smoothly isn't the best thing

Expected way more of a lemony ale, definitely disappointed in this regard. Not a bad ale, but by DFH standards, seems like something is missing in this ale. Wouldn't buy it again, but wouldn't prevent people from giving it a shot

Photo of patreely12
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A - pours a somewhat cloudy, but bright orange. the head is fairly large, about 2 fingers of orange tinted cream. not a whole lot of lacing.

S - heavy doses of fresh lemon, citrus and centennial hops. fair amount of alcohol in the nose as well.

T/M - faint note of buttery bread malts up front. strong bitterness from lemon rind and piney, centennial hops make up the majority of the flavor. there are light hints of honey, and some caramel to give the beer a bit of sweetness. decent amount of alcohol that in combination with the high carbonation tingles the tongue. finishes slightly dry. medium bodied.

Overall - I was sort of let down by the presence of the lemons. It seemed to be made with more rind than actual lemons which only added to the bitterness, not sure if DFH was going for that or not. This is still a great beer though.

Photo of Urbancaver
3.78/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden yellow. a good amount of white head. Looks like a typical IPA./DIPA. Very well carbonated and not too thick. Smells like lemon and hops... the lemon is a bit overpowering and the hops are almost in the background. Some light citrus on the tonue. Tastes bitter and lemon heavy. Too much to detect some of the subtler things going on. Overall its not awful but fairly disappointing. Nothing about it really stands out to me and the overwhelming lemon bitters kills the taste :(

Photo of Gmann
3.2/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy golden color with some brownish highlights. The off-white head is dense and clingy, settled into a light cap.

The aroma is quite subtle which is surprising. I pick up a bready malt with some honey notes. A light general citrus hop aroma is present but not very strong. Some light pineapple notes as well.

The taste is of an ultra bready malt with honey and caramel notes. The hops are slightly citrusy but seem to be more bitter than flavorful. The hops do bring some piney notes. I like the addition of the lemons as it provides the beer with a welcomed fruity flavor. I am a bit disappointed in the hop profile, thought it would be more flavorful.

Moderate to full bodied with airy carbonation. Starts off malty sweet on the palate but finishes with a piney/asprin like chalky bitterness. Not a big fan of a chalky finish but it is better than a syrupy sweetness that some DIPAs can have. At times the ABV seems well hidden, at other times a get some belly burn.

An average DIPA. I thought the hops would have much more flavor. Perhaps the hops faded. The beer drinks like an imperal pale ale. If I am going to drink something with this much ABV I want more hop flavor, dangnabit

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

From 750mL bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 5/18/11
*From notes

A: Pleasant golden-amber hue with a healthy three finger head and some generous lacing.

S: Citrusy hops on the nose, wow. It's a stunner. A bit of alcohol is detectable, though it comes off like a West Coast DIPA. This is the first time I recall DFH doing a beer with such a Left Coast influence.

T: When cold, this one drinks incredibly well. It's extremely hoppy yet balanaced. If you hadn't told me there was a hint of lemon zest in this, I wouldn't have known, though it did show up a bit when it warmed. Slightly boozy and acidic. As it warmed though, it got quite bitter and almost dishsoapy. DRINK THIS ONE COLD!

M: Creamy and properly carbonated. It' rich and big, but easy enough to go back to.

O: I know the opinions are split here, but I must say that the fresh bottle of DFH's Hellhound On My Ale I consumed was simply awesome. It's one of the best new brews Sam & Co. has produced in some time. Drinking it cold was an absolute pleasure, though I wouldn't recommend cracking one open at or near room temp.

*Paired with a grilled chicken gyro

Photo of brotherloco
3.63/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml. Bottled in 2011.

Pours a cloudy gold with a bit of tiny floating sediment. Off white to beige head sticks around for a bit, but settles pretty thin. Medium lacing.

Citrus is intense in this aroma, not surprising given the lemon addition. Grapefruit and orange sneak through as well with a real honey tea sweetness supporting it. Some sort of fermented fruit comes out as well.

Taste comes on with a medium strength, but is a bit muddled. Fairly balanced sweet and bitter flavors quickly shift into puckering lemon sourness. Not like a crazy bacteria laced sour, but soapy lemon sting.

Medium bodied with medium carbonation, but a touch syrupy over time. Alcohol flavor is quite well hidden, but no surprise there is a growing heat after half a glass.

I like this like I like Aprilhop, it's an original twist on a style (specifically fruit + IPA), and I'm glad it was brewed, but it doesn't transcend the original style.

Photo of kevinv
2.55/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottle poured into a snifter. I picked this bottle up from Rick's Wine & Gourmet in Alexandria, VA.

A - Pours a slightly hazy orange/light copper-ish color with about 1 finger of creamy off white head. Decent head retention and some nice sticky lacing. Looks about average.

S - The nose is largely bready malts with a caramel sweetness. I get an insignificant amount of lemon zest. Earthy/musty hops notes. Pretty heavy on the alcohol.

T - The taste seems to be largely a mixture of bready malts and alcohol. There's only a light presence of lemon, similar to the smell. The hops are definitely in the background and don't balance well with the malt. Surprisingly un-bitter. Drying finish.

M - The mouthfeel was about average. Medium body with a moderate carbonation.

O - Overall, this one didn't work for me and was quite a letdown. Definitely a slow sipper.

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

750 mL bottle, shared with BAs brun, glard and NYManc.

Poured into a Corsendonk tulip.

An incredibly vibrant and transparent orange color with yellow tinges and a thin off-white head. Smell carries a thin citrus character with not much lemon/orange quality left in the glass. Slight amount of hoppy pine earthiness with some malty breadiness to carry. Decently balanced on the nose.

Taste has the citrus that the smell was missing. Sweet lemon and orange peel. Good amount of citrus quality. Some pine hop on the forefront and caramel malts to end. 10% finds it way towards the end as well and presents itself as a subtle burn.

Light-bodied IPA with minimal carbonation. Decent IPA, but doesn't quite hold its weight compared to the Minute series. The bottle artwork is kickass though!

Photo of vandemonian
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on draught at their pub in Gaithersburg. I found it too bitter. I prefer the 90-minute.

A: Orange color with a head that dies fast. Lacing not that great. 4

S: Surprisingly not that hoppy. 3

T: Hoppy with citrus into a slight lemony tang. Aftertaste is bitter. Too bitter. 4

M: Reasonably foamy. 4

O: Bitter. The lemon added more bitterness than tang. 3.5

Photo of kbutler1
3.58/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Poured into a DT tulip glass a copper orange color with a slight collared head. Nice aroma of orange, lemon, and slight pine. Medium mouthfeel. Not overly bitter, has a nice maltiness to it. The lemon comes out minimally but is a nice addition to it. Some floral type notes as well. Some pine.

Photo of weller1js
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

appearance: pours a hazy, golden brown, well carbonated, offwhite foam, similar lacing.

smell: floral and citrus hops, light maltiness.

taste: begins crisp, with hops dominating the palate, dry yet floral, citrus notes of lemon complement the dry nature of the hops, finishes with a semi-dry bitterness.

drinkability: exquisite, well-hopped and complex, abv is high but taste doesnt let on, as a hop-head and a fan of lemon drinks, very bold and drinkable.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.13/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml bottle served in a snifter.

L - lightly hazed copper color with a good sized white head that left some sticky lacing behind.

S - sweet citrus fruit aroma.

T - the sweetness is kind of strong with the citrus hoppiness taking a backseat, the finish is sticky sweet on the lips.

F - full bodied with ok carbonation.

O - it's ok but it was a bit too sweet tasting for me to really get into.

Photo of billab914
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into my Dogfish shaped glass. Orange amber in color with a thick and frothy white head filling the top inch of the glass. Decent head retention with some very nice lacing to it.

The aroma is pretty hoppy with grapefruit, pine and some lemon zest to it. I get a bit of a sweeter, malty, almost candied like flavor to it as well.

The taste shows more of the zesty citrus to it up front. Midway I start to get more of the grapefruit and citrus rind like bitterness mixing with a sweeter, caramel or candied like malt flavor. A little bit of alcohol lingers with the finish along with a some zesty lemon flavors.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side with carbonation being moderate. Overall it was a pretty decent beer, but not outstanding in the style. The hoppy flavors were pretty nice but the sweet, almost candy like malts felt a little much at times. The zesty lemon was pretty nice too in it. it's a cool and flavorful beer but I don't think I'd choose it over 90 minute.

Photo of BradLikesBrew
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly cloudy copper body with a thin white head.

Lemon, tangerine, and grapefruit with an underlying caramel sweetness.

Caramel malt lends sweetness on the front of the palate. Hops take occupy the rest. Citrus from the centennial, mild lemon notes from the lemons, lingering bitterness on the finish. The lemons seem to add a little astringent, bitter character as well. There is an interesting sweetness that comes and goes, can't quite figure it out. Sure is interesting.

Medium body with a mildly sticky feel.

Like most large format DFH offerings, the description on the Hellhound bottle gets you amped up for an epic beer with some crazy ingredients. I think DFH does itself a disservice with this sort of marketing. If this were just labeled like another DIPA, you would enjoy and appreciate it. But after reading this label, the results seem more mixed and at the very least are less creative and unique than the label implied. I think this beer sets the consumer up for dissapointment.

Photo of treehugger02010
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had this on draft at Dogfish Head in Rehoboth, DE. It came in a snifter.
Appearance: The head is a white color, with small sized bubbles, no lacing, and no retention. The body is a translucent amber.
Smell: The aromas are toffee, earth, and wheat.
Taste: The flavors are pine resin, citrus notes, and earth notes.
Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is crisp with a lingering finish.
Drinkability: This beer is very good.
Don't drink and review.

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

Pours a hazy amber with two fingers of cream colored creamy foam, settles slowly to a thin cap and leaves sparse but thick chunks of lace down the glass. Smell: sweet pale and light caramel, pine, lightly spicy, candied citrus rind. Taste: light candy / honey sweetness with plenty of bitterness and hop flavor. Rindy grapefruit and lemon with a piney backbone. Fairly light bodied for the style. Alcohol barely present. Wasn't amazed and it didn't feature the lemon as much as I would expect from the description - some lemon candy as it warms, but still not that lemony. But they succeeded in making a DIPA that I would drink very often if it was available. 2011 Batch 1 (May?)

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

4.0 A: Hazed medium to dark orange color. Two fingers of creamy off-white head with average retention and a small ring of lacing.

3.5 S: Not quite as hoppy as I would have expected, but quite nice nonetheless. Hops are spicy and grassy foremost with a light citrusy, grapefruit component. The lemon is about as powerful as the hops. Malts are mostly neutral with a light sweetness and maybe a hint of crystal. Surprisingly clean and free of booziness. Yeast gives a touch of breadiness.

3.0 T: Lightly biscuity malts with a bready yeast component. Just a touch of caramel sweetness. Moderate bitterness with piney, grassy, and lightly herbal hops with a touch of grapefruit. Lemon adds a nice addition, but overall this is pretty tame for 10% ABV and 100 IBUs. Again no booze.

4.5 M: Heavier medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Very nice creaminess going on and super smooth.

3.5 D: This is a pretty unexciting beer given it's stats. This has neither a strong hop component, nor a strong malt component. It's tasty, but doesn't ever make you think that you are drinking something special.

Photo of mikereaser
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear golden yellow with 3-4 inches of white foam that left some decent lacing down the glass.

S - nicely balanced mix of caramel malts, hops and lemon and other citrus. Nothing too strong.

T - Nice blend of caramel malts, hops and lemon. The hops don't jump out at you, just subtle earthy hops. Lemon dominates but not overly so and it finishes with a nice piney bitterness.

M - good carbonation, medium bodied with a bit of creaminess.

D - overall a nice beer but nothing too exciting. The lemon becomes too much as I go through this bottle. Not bad, but not the easiest to finish.

Photo of mindlucent2007
3.45/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a cloudy and hazy golden color with good lacing. Smell is hella boozy and I am getting vodka-like scents mixed in with lemon. Nice hoppy bite with a citrus hint and alcohol is hidden better than it is in the smell. Mouthfeel is on the lighter end. Easy to sip on for a 10% abv brew, but not one of my favorite Dogfish Head works. I'd give it a shot again however just to see if anything changes.

Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Date: 10 June 2011
Glass: 26fl oz brandy snifter
Type: 750ml bottle, capped, "BOTTLED 2011-1"

Poured gently, 1.5 finger head reduces to thin film, excellent lacing, color is clear amber-orange.

I expected the aroma to be lemony. Aroma is fairly hoppy, more on the citrus end, and it takes a few sips and smells to notice the bitter lemon. As the beer warms, pine hops dominate the aroma.

Taste is filled with bitter lemon and a fair amount of hops, tastes like amarillo even though they are centennial. Hops are citrus on the tongue and more piney on the nose.

Extremely nice hoppy-bitter mouthfeel. Top. Notch.

Solid, standard DIPA. It doesn't deserve much more review. I didn't rate this beer for off-centeredness, and if I did, it wouldn't have that high of a score. It's not hitting me like most other DFH ales. Still good.

Photo of rfgetz
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very cloudy golden amber with pillow of frothy white head, good retention and lacing. Scent is dominated by a strong lemon note, underneath lies grapefruit with a solid malt backbone. Noticeable alcohol on the nose as it warms. Taste follows scent, a quick burst of lemon before it settles into a standard dIPA, grapefruit and solid carmel malts, touch of spice and warm alcohol. Medium bodied, oily, lingering warmth on the palate. A good beer undone just a touch with its warmth.

Photo of dfillius
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Gentle pour yields 1/2 finger of white head with good retention. Cloudy orange-amber liquid. Nearly perfect! The head could have been a tad more billowy.
S: A tad restrained. Strong caramel malt with some pronounced citrus. Fair amount of esters as well with some vegetal off aroma.
T: Savory malt opens almost salty, followed by centennial hops and slight lemonade dancing around. After that, a sweet finish with closing bitterness. Very diverse! While it tastes a bit too sweet, it's very nice.
M: Full, rich, sweet and biter. A fair bit shy of cloying but it definitely thought about it. Warmth grows, but never becomes too much.
D: This one grew on me. I like it and I'd order a second. I don't think I'd bu it again though. Good, but not special enough or unique. Very similar to 90 minute IPA.

Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 1,795 ratings.