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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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

573 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 573
Hads: 1,847
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 14.06%
Wants: 127
Gots: 366 | FT: 6
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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 573 | Hads: 1,847
Photo of Emnmarko
4.06/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a hazy orangish-amber with a white billowy three finger head. The huge head loiters around like a teenager in the mall before it finally dissipates to leave a thick cap that leaves moderate lacing on my glass.

S- Bitter danky floral hops and a earthy malt bill fills my senses. Lemons, pine, and bitter sweet fruit.

T- Wow. There is a lot more going on here than the nose suggests. The lemons that were in the background before are now in control. A bitter sweetness with lemon comes on strong at first. A menthol flavor along with it, almost like a lemon halls cough drop, but more enjoyable. Dank hops mingle with earthy sweet malts and only time reduces its power.

M- Surprising drinkable for 10%. The alcohol is well hidden with this one. A little fizzy but I'm not going to knock it too badly for it. Clean feel and refreshing.

O- I have been wanting to try this one for a while now. I have great respect for Dogfish head and I was not let down here. This brew is refreshing and delicious. An interesting beer that gets ya drunk! I guess I am a little off centered. Dogfish head rules!

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.02/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy copper with a two-finger foamy white head. Nice amount of light lacing.

S - Floral hops, lemon peel, and pine.

T - Starts off with a malt sweetness. Lemon peel and tropical fruits come next with a nice piney bitterness. Finish is mostly lingering bitter lemon peel. Slight warming from the alcohol.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Sticky mouthfeel.

O - Really enjoyed this beer, reminds me of 90 Minute with lemon added. Glad I got a chance to try this. Would drink again.

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Photo of t8dd
4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. Poured into a snifter. Huge citrus aromas. Poured a hazy yellow with a nice thick white head. The lemon really complements the citrus and pine character of the hops. Reminded me of a shandy with a bitter aftertaste but good. Really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of hardy008
4.19/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark hazy orange with a 1/2 finger of white foam, with good retention and lacing. The aroma has lemons, grapefruit, citrus zest, and herbal hops.

Tastes sweeter than I expected with lemons, grapefruit, tangerines, citrus zest, herbal hops, caramel malt, and sugar. Saying this tastes sweeter than expected does not mean this is a malt bomb, because it is not. I thought from the aroma that this beer would be very bitter, and instead it is well balanced for a DIPA.

Medium to full bodied, with average carbonation. Smooth and easy to drink. The alcohol is very well hidden. I can't believe this beer has a 10.0 % abv, because it doesn't taste boozy at all. Very well made, and worth buying again for sure.

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

Bottle into tulip

Appearance - Skifhtly hazy copper to pale orange, little bit of yellow, slightly over 1 finger white head, nice sticky thick lacing.

Smell - Floral hop aroma, pine, grapefruit, lemon, lemon zest, orange. Slight roastiness and medium alcohol.

Taste - Pine, resin, sweet tropical fruits, mango, pineapple, orange, tart subtle lemon, malty backbone kind of biscuit roastiness, the end flavor still carries some lemon but also has a bit of alcohol presence as well.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, medium carbonation, crisp, refreshing.

Overall - Good beer. Glad I had the opportunity to try this one. Wouldn't mind drinking it again. The lemon character comes through almost like squeezing lemon into your tea with honey. Exciting flavors.

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Photo of cjgiant
4.07/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The snifter was filled with a rose-gold, cloudy liquid with small-bubbled head. The head that laced the sides, but formed a thin film over the surface of the beer.

The smell was floral and tropical, with hints of peach, pineapple, melon. In some sniffs there is a slight earthy pungency that I can't quite describe.

Like most DFH beers, there is a malt sweetness in the beginning, almost like a light brown sugar-cinnamon swirl bread. Then the fruit comes in, dampened by the initial sweetness. Papaya and maybe pineapple; I also get an unexpected light taste of watermelon. The hops seem to add a lemon-y tartness, as if it were squeezed over a fruit salad.

The carbonation does play on the tongue well into the taste. The end feel, however, is a little oily.

I enjoyed this beer more as it warmed. The taste seems to shine as it reaches a more appropriate temperature (shocker). I would maybe have enjoyed a less tart bitterness if it would allow the scent to come through in the taste better. The end feel also knocked the rating down just a bit.

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Photo of jpro
3.72/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big bottle form Northbridge Pig 50% off blowout...

A: Copper-tinged gold; two-finger, cotton white head; chunky lace.

S: Pine; lemon peel; a hint of booze.

T: Piney; citrus; resin; fairly sweet, malty finish.

M: Medium feel; high carbonation; a little less feel than expected at 10%.

O: Kind of like a duller 90 Minute IPA (with lemon) - or perhaps this bottle has been around for a little while - not sure how old it is - this could be an issue; not a bad DIPA, but fairly ordinary for DFH standards.

*from note 02.02.14

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Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

So happy to get my hands on this (semi-rare in CT). This beer is something of an oddball but i love it just the same. This beer combines the tart and bitter from the lemons and hops to create something truly great. The color is amber with a nice hazel head that disperses rather quickly. The smell is what gets me. Full force citrus from the lemons hits you and with the first sip I was hooked. Great flavors of fruit and hops dominate and make an interesting beer that just tastes amazing.
On a side note, I love the artwork on the label as well as the acknowledgement of Robert Johnson.
Definitely recommended.

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Photo of mattkoon
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

pours a nice golden brown with a thick creamy head. the smell is hoppy with citrus. taste is bitter....bitter from the lemon zest and the hops- the 2 bitters go nice together. there is also a strong alcohol flavor, which is expected from the robust 10%. over all this is a great ale that packs a punch.

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Photo of Badger6
4.19/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured out of a 750 mL bottle into a snifter to properly focus the aroma and taste of what looked to be a great beer...it delivered. BTW, the label is classic DFH bomber material, great artwork to enjoy while sampling the beer.

A: The body is a hazy, deep golden amber.

S: A very spicy and piney aroma is present on the nose. The spiciness seems peppery, but it isn't distinguishable. Hints of citrus, not pronounced and not easily detectable. For the promises on the label, the aroma is not much different than a typical DIPA.

T: This thing is hopped up and lemony out of the gate, with a powerful reminder that this is a loaded beer at 10% abv. The lemon flavor comes from the dried lemons and peels in the brew,a nd they are distinct. As it progresses it begins to exhibit a very earthy, organic flavor that finished out with a malty sweetness. The finish is not unexpected considering the abv on this beer, nor is it overbearing or overpowering.

M:The body would be heavy, except for a decent level of carbonation to keep things light. The alcohol is there in how warm and velvety the beer feels on the palate. Nice drink for a cold winter's day.

O: This is an outstanding beer, and was very enjoyable to drink. Typical for a DFH offering, it's just a little different than everything else. The smell is pretty typical for an DIPA, the taste is where it gets interesting, in a good way. The lemon character relays eta this apart, and the mouthfeel makes this one smooth beer to drink. BTW if you want the full effect, put some Robert Johnson on the turntable (or iTunes) and savor some of this eclectic brew.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Dogfish Head Brewings and Eats in Rehoboth, DE.

Pours a dark amber, with a one inch head, and really good lacing down the glass.

Smells great- lots of tropical fruits, with lemon, too. Very strong, very pungent.

The taste was great. Slightly resinous, with lots of orange, pineapple, and lemon. Strong lingering bitterness at the end of each sip. Not too sweet, pretty dry. Small amount of malt character present, but this is all about the hops, really.

Medium bodied and well carbonated. Very drinkable.

I crushed a few of these at the brewpub and loved both of them. Very good IPA from DFH.

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Photo of Tony49er
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving type- On draft into a Tulip glass

Appearance- Hazy golden color, almost citrus like, a good amount of fine bubbles

Smell- Amazing very citrus/ lemon notes hit you hard and fresh, fresh hops, a hint of honey but that just might be what I picked up

Taste- Lemon, citrus. hops, lemon juice, herbal notes, golden raisins

Mouth feel- Smooth, soft but packed full of Lemon, citrus, hops and herbal notes, this beer does not expose all of its complexity but begs you to take another sip I love this beer, very fresh and exciting.

Overall- Another great beer from Dogfish Head once again I have had this beer in bottle and on tap and I prefer it on tap I must say but either way if you are able to get this beer in any of these ways DO IT...its great...CHEERS

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Photo of dexterk1
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried this one recently at one of the alehouses. Appearance is orange to maybe a dark amber. Head was about medium with some nice staying power and good lacing.
Odor was citrus first. Sweet citrus, pine, and some malt also come trough.
Taste is mostly citrus with grapefruit seemingly the main element. I also got some orange and hoppy pine. Minor malt undertones also are there.
Mouthfeel is nice. Medium body and is not heavy on the tongue.
Overall, a very nice ale! A little better than I had anticipated and carried more hops through than I though.

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bomber into an oversized tulip.
Pours deep amber, 1 finger of head.
Smells a mix of sweet malt and hoppiness.
Taste reminds me of the signature Dogfish Head taste. A round malt/hop body.
Mouthfeel is a bit sticky.
Overall, a solid ale. I enjoyed it.

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Photo of JohnParadee
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Did not like this much out of the bottle, but (surprise, surprise), it is much better on tap. Pretty orange/amber pour in snifter glass. No cloudiness, so not opaque. Likely heavily filtered. Slight head, which dissipated shortly. Lots of tiny bubbles, and decent lacing. Nose is dank, piney orange. On the palate, the musty dank remains, with heavy hops and subtle malts. 10% ABV Is masked, but there. Mouthfeel a little thin. All in all, though, better than I had anticipated.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice.

Appearance: Pours a somewhat hazy copper golden orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. Big three finger off white head with decent retention. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing around the glass.

Smell: A bright and juicy hop forward aroma with big hints of citrus fruits. Upfront scent of citrus hops with hints of orange peel, grapefruit, lemons, tangerine, mango, pineapple, apricot, and melon. Earthy and herbal hop scent with hints of grass and pine resin. Backing presence of sweet malt with hints of caramel, grains, cracker, and biscuit. Also some hints of honey sweetness. A very good juicy IPA aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a very juicy and zesty hop forward taste with big notes of citrus fruits. Big upfront mix of hops. Citrus notes of grapefruit, orange peel, lemons, tangerine, pineapple, mango, melon, and apricot. Earthy hop notes of grass. Herbal hop notes of pine resin. Subtle sweet notes of honey. Backing presence of sweet bready malt with notes of caramel, cracker, grains, and biscuit. Very ripe and hoppy but not overwhelmingly bitter. A very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very juicy and fairly oily but nicely smooth. Finishes dry. Alcohol heat is there but tame.

Overall: A very good West Coast style imperial IPA. Good citrusy bite. Great name and bottle for a blues legend and the beer lives up to it.

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Photo of Zorro
3.62/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Reads the description, "What the Hell DFH! You trying to create a Hop Powered Black Hole!"

True story.

Clear amber colored beer with a small white colored head.

Smells like a Hop Supernova. Scents of lemon and citrus with some strong tea aromas. Strong lemon rind and some grassy scents. Mild scent for what it is.

Starts out slightly earthy. Flavor is much like the smell, citrus and strong tea. Quite mild flavored considering all the hops that went in to it. Distinctly not a hophead beer. Flavor doesn't change very much pretty straightforward IPA with a really high alcohol level.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall an OK beer, just not super complex.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Amber colored brew with a white cap of head with good lacing performance.

Rather dry aroma with toasty malts and citrusy hops. Picking up on the lemon flesh and some piny-ness. There are some flowery hop cone notes next to the subtle dankness of the citrus and herbal whiffs.

There's a booziness that heightens the lemon flesh addition. Hoppiness is leafy, yet dank, with bold pine and citrus notes. There's an interesting woodiness, too, almost like a cedar wood. Malts are pretty big with semi-dry tone and caramel malts with an edgy toast. Booze holds the complexity down a little. The finish is a little spicy and long. The carbonation is a little low and has trouble catching up. The body feels pretty good, although there is some stickiness.

This DIPA suffers from trying too hard to have it nailed down with the simple flavors. Still good, but it would've worked better with a paler malt base.

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Photo of Samuel906
3.99/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a perfectly translucent golden orange with a clingy off white head. Head quickly dissipates but leaves some clinging to the glass. Good looking beer. Smell is pretty typical IPA but a little more subdued than I would expect / like. Hops, malt, some pine, lots of citrus, and I keep feeling like I detect a touch of cider vinegar, but not in a bad way. Taste is all about the lemon. It is not "sour" lemon but instead lemon zest giving it a slightly bitter character. Great hop presence. Not very sweet, just a touch of some honey sweetness. Feel is fantastic, light and crisp with moderate carbonation. It does not feel syrupy or sticky like some of DFH's other heavy hitting IPAs. Exceedingly easy to drink and shocked me when I read it was 10%. Overall a terrific beer, again reinforcing DFH's mastery of the IPA style.

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Photo of MattyBones
4.02/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a big bottle of this last night before a concert. Just like most DFH brews they definitely don't hold back on the alcohol.

Appearance: Deep copper with a slight reddish tint to it. Pored a thick white head.

Smell: A mixture of malts, pine and some orange/tangerine and lemon.

Taste: Not too bitter, some pine and citrus notes up front then finishes with a lemony aftertaste mixed with alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Not as syrupy as I expected like DFH's beers usually have to them with the higher alcohol content. Not harsh on the palate at all, but definitely leaves the taste of lemon in your mouth.

Overall: Another solid DFH offering, definitely worth giving it another try.

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

750 ml bottle into signature tulip glass, bottled in 2012A. Pours moderately hazy/cloudy orange amber color with a dense 1-2 finger cream colored head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big grapefruit, orange peel, lemon peel, tangerine, orange rind, floral, grass, light pine, caramel, bread, toast, and floral earthiness. Very nice aromas with good complexity and balance of citrus hops and malt notes; with good strength. Taste of grapefruit, orange peel, lemon peel, tangerine, floral, grass, light pine, light caramel, bread, and floral earthiness. Good amount of earthy floral/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, orange peel, lemon peel, tangerine, floral, grass, light pine, light caramel, bread, and floral earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity and balance of citrus hop and malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a moderately slick, and fairly sticky mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a small warming present after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice DIPA, even at over a year old. Very nice complexity and balance of centennial hop, lemon peel, and malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of welldigger888
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Wonderful copper orange color with a nice snow white head that fades to a thin cap that sheets lace on glass and settles.

Sadly an older bottle, so I am getting some oxidized hop aromas. A malty backbone that stands tall with a nice dose of lemon. Fresh I bet this would be an all-star.

Lemon lemon lemon and biscuit malt with a hint of the oxidized hops. Again I need to find a fresh bottle. Firm bitterness on finish which releases wonderful citric flavors.

Devilishly drinkable, wonderful nuances with the citrus. I wonder when this hellhound will track me down.

Great experience, will be tracking down a freshy of this deceptively quaffable elixir.

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Photo of JackMcAwesome
4.06/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm giving this one fours across the board. Let me tell you why...

The bottle is a 750ml with a pretty awesome label. It's THE GREAT Robert Johnson with his guitar bookended with some creepy trees, and behind Mr. Johnson is the hell hound that is on his trail. I'll be keeping this one and putting it on the shelf.

It pours an extremely hazy, gold. It gives a pretty solid one finger head with a moderately aggressive pour. The lacing so far seems paramount.

Smell: My first though was it smelled exactly like Pledge. I felt like I had just cleaned a table or something. That wasn't good, so I dug deeper as the brew warmed up. It could be that I have wood on my mind now, but their is a woody texture to it. So, we have lemon and wood. There's another spice there though, that I can't quite put my finger on just yet. It might be something as simple as pepper.

Taste: Definitely a pepper kick. Like ground black pepper. The lemon is there as well, and it still kind of reminds me of Pledge. As terrible as that might sound, I'm taking it as something unique, and although a DIPA, I'm really liking how it isn't a typical DIPA combo. There's also a dry grass flavor to it, and this is all balanced pretty well with a sweet malt finish. Which again, with the lemon/alcohol start, makes for a pretty unique finish, at least to me.

Feel: The alcohol is present, in the sense of it's warmth and effects. Hidden nicely though. It's fairly carbonated, making this fairly light feeling. Very nice drink for a warm evening.

Overall: Although not perfect by a long shot, this was just awesome to drink. The 10% got the buzz going, it had enough of a hop kick to give it an awesome bitter level, the lemon was a very unique addition making this a very specific beer. I'm currently listening to the absolutely perfect Robert Johnson as I review this, and it's making the whole experience surreal. Listen to Robert Johnson. Drink this beer. And let it all envelop you. Nothing has compared to it so far. If it didn't trigger the Pledge connotations, this would have been straight across fives from me. I'm not sure what they could do to fix that, but with everything else being perfect, I'll take it. I want more!

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours like unpasteurized cider, nice and cloudy with a solid, long lasting, off-white/light tan head. Nice lace.
Smell is piney with a light herbal hop behind, some malt, faint spice note. Good balance.
Taste is solid DIPA, herbal/pine hops, malt, light citrus, light spice. Very nice, well balanced.
Medium plus bodied, light effervescence. Warming, faint amount of drying at the end. A solid, delicious. I want more.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - pours a turbid yellow-orange. Lots of bead action, and lots of manila colored, sticky foam.

Aroma - caramel, biscuity malt, dark citrusy fruit, and after a few seconds, sweet lemon. Nice combo of aromas and while it fades a bit after setup, it's all still there.

Taste - pithy orange and grapefruit counter a chewy malty base. Sweet, heavy-handed grain offset by two-year old hops which obviousky no longer come across with the 100 IBU punch they packed in 2011. No matter, the hops are delicious, the lemon provides a nice extra layer on the aftertaste. The finish goes to a dry, lemon peel and hop bitterness end.

Mouthfeel - full-bodied, fluffy with considerable heaviness in both weight and oiliness.

Overall - a fine tribute beer to RJ. If I had another, I'd be sure to share with my buds, but this is Bogartski night.

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Robert Johnson's Hellhound On My Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 573 ratings.