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Hoptical Illusion - Blue Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hoptical IllusionHoptical Illusion

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,516 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,516
Reviews: 591
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 13.21%
Wants: 23
Gots: 93 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Blue Point Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Hibernator on 10-03-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,516 | Reviews: 591 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kiddynamite920
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. Very intense carbonation coming up from the nucleation spot.

A: Pretty clear, copper. White frothy head that is hanging around due to intense carbonation from the bottom of the glass. Head looks a bit slick, fairly standard. Very crisp and clean looking.

S: Has a fruity hop aroma with a good amount of sweetness. A good amount of malts are coming through for this IPA. A swirl of the glass brings out the citrus hop aromas and the tart fruitiness. Still smells a bit malty though. Has some tree fruit aromas...peaches and apricots

T: Nothing jumps out right away with this beer. Hop bitterness hits late after a melding of malts and hops come first. Good floral hop taste as well. Not getting any of the sweet fruits and malts that came on the nose. Just tastes a bit bitter.

M: Mouthfeel is pretty good for an IPA. Hits the tongue crisp and carbonated, as the malt backbone slides across the tongue. Finishes crisp and bitter.

D: This beer is quite drinkable indeed, as I found myself having 4 last night watching the Olympic games. Goes down easy, remains light enough to not fill you up and delivers a reasonable amount of flavor and aroma.

kiddynamite920, Feb 18, 2010
Photo of InIBUsWeTrust
4.53/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Picked up a sixer, while enjoying my staycation-1st IPA I've had from the wonderful city
of Long Island, lets give her a go.

Appearance: Great tropical backdrop with some carmelized hue, great head retention, checking the label for an "optical illusion" nil..so far, so good.

Smell: That distinctive IPA scent, maybe more so an APA, but with a slight candied citrus hop smack to your nostrils.

Taste: Caramel malt/ pineapple citrusy backdrop/ Not a huge hop presence, but enough to foot the bill as a sessional IPA. I'd like to try this on tap.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation meets oxidized Hop phenols.

Drinkability: A great fallback IPA if Smutty FinestKind isn't on the scene.

Welcome to Florida BluePoint!

InIBUsWeTrust, Feb 17, 2010
Photo of DNICE555
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed a bottle at the "Josh Experience"

A - Yellowy orange with decent head and some nice lacing throughout.

S - Some pine, Some citurs, not a ton going on here.

T - Mild grapefruit bitterness and pine with ample malt and possibly some honey to balance it out. A decent beginner or session ipa as the hops are pretty subtle in this one.

M - Medium dry body. Hops are balanced out here and don't leave much bitterness on the tongue.

D - Very drinkable. This is not for a hophead but if you are in the mood for a light mild ipa then this is a good choice.

DNICE555, Feb 16, 2010
Photo of josefnewsong
3.73/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - clearish, rusty-orange color...what's striking about this brew is the amount of lacing left down the entire glass. very nice indeed.
S - floral and citrus hops, maybe a bit of pine. nice maltiness there as well.
T - taste is citrus hops with a nice malt backing
M - medium-bodied and sticky
D - average for the style, typical dry sticky finish

Definitely a good IPA, nothing too amazing but a solid ale.

josefnewsong, Feb 15, 2010
Photo of Metalmonk
3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear jewel-like orange-rust color, with a bone-white head that isn't super-thick but has some good lace cling as it sinks to a skim, then a crown.

Orange-y hops are dominant in the aroma, the overall aromatic vibe being a fruity one, particularly citrus. Just a slight medicinal vibe in back too.

Zest of citrus peel is a major player in the flavor. Definitely lots of hops talking in this one, but it's pretty well controlled, not a complete tongue-blistering wallop or anything. Malt is quite sweet, and there's a pie-spice nip here too, giving the beer a character not unlike an orange-glazed cinnamon roll. Lingering lime peel in the finish.

Carbonation delivers a pretty aggressive tingle, prickly even, which, with the citrus rind bitter/tart and malty sweetness of the flavor, makes this a pretty attacking beer. "Bright" would probably be the best word for Hoptical Illusion, not just in feel but overall.

The number of amazing IPAs out there makes this a beer I may never revisit again, but I would certainly welcome it should it somehow appear in my glass a ways down the road. Worthwhile and surely a must-try (at least once) for any hophead.

Metalmonk, Feb 10, 2010
Photo of argock
4.05/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a Duvel tulip. No obvious freshness date. Purchased as 6-pack at Market Street Wineshop (Charlottesville, VA) for $9.99.

A: Light orange-amber with 1-2 finger nearly white, frothy head with good retention and a few spots of lace here and there.

S: Very balanced aroma with sweet crystal malt backbone and floral and citrus providing most of the hops punch

T: Definitely fits into the balanced, easy-drinking IPA category. Maltiness is solid with crystal malt sugary sweetness with floral, citrus, and spicy hops contributions. Bitterness is medium, which actually works well as it allows the hop flavors to work their way into the flavor with more gusto.

M: Solid coating mouthfeel with low carbonation and long-lasting bitter citrus aftertaste.

D: A very drinkable IPA with a balanced profile and distinctive hops flavors that don't succumb to the bitterness. Good brew.

argock, Feb 10, 2010
Photo of DLReeves
4.33/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As usual I discovered this one at our local consumer's beverage store. I am always looking for new tryouts so this one caught my eye. I am partial to "hoppy" beers and ales so this met that criteria. I agree totally with other reviewers..pours a nice amber color,decent head, interesting initial nose and very pleasing taste which is my personal main criteria. Given the fairly high abv of 6.8, clearly one must limit intakes in short time frames. I certainly will purchase this again for "upon further review" instances.

DLReeves, Feb 09, 2010
Photo of mostpoetsdo
3.93/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear golden brown with a billowy white head.

S: Pine and citrus smell. Also a tad bit of malt.

T: This was very impressive. Very well balanced, mix of citrus hops and pine hops combined with a strong malt backing. Just a great balance of hop and malt taste. Nice bitter aftertaste, but sweet, too.

M: Clean feeling and smooth.

D: This was so well balanced, and good ABV to "session" with.

mostpoetsdo, Feb 01, 2010
Photo of Nezzy
3.88/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this at a tasting the brewery was hosting and then decided to get a bottle's worth.

Appearance: Nice golden tan color with some brown in it. Had decent white head but not too much.

Smell: The representative from the brewery warned me about grapefruit which I looked forward to. You can smell a combination of a citrus based fruit with hops.

Taste: Well hello grapefruit. At first its sort of heavily carbonated and is mixing with a general taste of hops. That gives way to the acidic nature of the grapefruit which is a nice refreshing taste. It is slightly bitter as well mixed in with some sweetness from malt.

Mouthfeel: It's a bit too strong from all the carbonation but then quickly becomes smooth and dissipates quickly.

Drinkability: My only issue with the beer is the acidic tastes but otherwise I love the grapefruit and overall taste. It's definitely meant for summer time as a refreshing beer and I could put back a few.

Nezzy, Jan 30, 2010
Photo of cbutova
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a clear orange-amber color with a two finger foamy head that has pretty good retention. The head is pretty much straight up white and starts to leave medium-thick lacing as it dies down. It could improve with a bigger head but this is still a very nice looking beer. The aroma is of decent strength and the main things I get are some pretty fruity hops amidst a strong malt backbone. I also get a bit of a grainy/grassy scent and taste. There is definitely some caramel to the malts and some earthy hop notes to go along with the fruit. A bit more strength and hop aroma would help this one. The nose becomes almost impossible to pick up after a while and frustrates me. The taste is pretty nice here. There is a good amount of hops, certainly not an illusion. The hops are piney, earthy and somewhat citrusy. The citrus lends an almost candy like taste to the beer as it is complimented by some sweets. The malt backbone backs up the hops nicely and is followed by a rush of hop bitterness. I get a tiny hint of alcohol and this seems to be the only problem along with that candy sweetness taste. Neither of these elements are that problematic and the beer is still nicely balanced and an enjoyable experience. Right off the bat during my first sip I knew that the mouthfeel was the worst aspect of this beer. It is not horrible by any means but is too thin and not creamy at all. The body is too light for some pretty strong flavors and the bitteress of the beer. The carbonation is appropriate and keeps this MF at an average level. It just seems to watery to me. There is no alcohol warming and the beer leaves a bitter coat on the tongue. Drinkability depends mostly on taste for me. The taste is good so the drinkability is pretty good here. The price was not bad as far as I remember and there really aren't any horrible flavors here. I enjoyed the taste but this one could use a boost in body and aroma. I am glad I tried it because of the unique candy like hop flavor mixed with a grainy aspect.

cbutova, Jan 27, 2010
Photo of Onenote81
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've wanted to try this beer for awhile, and just recently started seeing this around the area. Poured into a pint glass. Pours a crystal clear orange with a big rocky white head on top. Decent retention, left lots of sticky lace. Scents of grass, lemon, and floral hops.

Nice crisp body on this. Carbonation level is moderate to high. Big hoppy bitterness right off the bat. Slight honey sweetness on the finish, but this is almost all hops. Drinkability is lower due to the grating bitterness. I couldn't have too many of these, or my mouth would be toast. Still, if you're looking for a good simple bitter IPA, look no further.

Onenote81, Jan 16, 2010
Photo of ktrillionaire
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a pint, on-tap...

A - A golden copper with a slight foamy white head, no lacing.

S - Mellow citric hop aroma, and a hint of breadiness usually found in euro lager.

T - A little better than average in the taste dept. The hoppiness, which is somewhat subdued for the style, is balanced well with a pale golden malt. The golden malt is interesting, but not entirely successfully executed as compared to the more commonly incorporated caramel malt. Medium hoppy finish.

M - Crisp and refreshing.

D - A moderate beer, certainly drinkable, but not excellent.

Generally, I wouldn't prefer this beer.

ktrillionaire, Jan 11, 2010
Photo of billab914
3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Southern Tier tulip glass. Pours amber in color wit ha small white covering on top.

Aroma is hoppy with citrus and pine with a decent malt presence coming through as well. Taste is similar with a good hoppy flavor with both citrus and pine present. The malt comes through as well with a moderate presence in the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, this is a very easy drinking and pleasing IPA. I really enjoyed this beer, it was good tasting and easy drinking. Something I would buy again.

billab914, Jan 09, 2010
Photo of portia99
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received from JoeyBeerBelly in the SNF Squares LIF. Thanks Joe! Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

A - Pours a crystal clear a pale golden amber color with a finger of fluffy white head. Head lingers a while and falls with a high collar and a bit of lacing left on the glass.

S - Has an earthy hop aroma, a bit of sweet malt in the background and some fruity yeast aroma too. There's some other aroma I can't place...smells a little dirty/dirtlike...can't think of another way to put it.

T - Malty backbone. Earthy and spicy hops - not overpowering - definitely the focus but this beer is quite balanced. A bit of diacetyl in there - a bit buttery, but smoothes things out. Tastes like an English IPA more than an American version.

M - Medium bodied, strong carbonation levels. Feels thick and chewy in the mouth and on the tongue.

D - Very well balanced IPA, definitely more English than American. Not a bad thing at all...I prefer American examples but a good English IPA now and then is a welcome change of pace. Enjoyable beer...fairly sessionable.

portia99, Jan 07, 2010
Photo of mralphabet
3.33/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 Oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: Copper in color... about a fingers worth of head with nice lacing.

S: Very strong citric hops, maybe a little piney...

T: Just like the smell.... the citrus hop hits quickly and hard... very little malt to balance things out. Pretty bitter in the aftertaste.... Fits the A IPA profile pretty good.

M: Medium body with an oily feel on the tongue.. Carbonation right on the money.

D: Not a bad A IPA, I think it fits the style pretty well... Not a big Hop Bomb, but pretty hoppy.... but nothing to go looking for. Lots of better ones out there.

mralphabet, Jan 04, 2010
Photo of billzee
3.6/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into pint glass. Light amber body with 2 finger white head. Piney hop notes. Not much here. Big on pine flavor with a bit of citrus. Very clean and crisp. Medium body, high carbonation. Nice crisp finish. This is a nice IPA for regular drinking.

billzee, Jan 03, 2010
Photo of brauseboof
3.25/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Picked this up on a recent trip up North.
Pours a slightly hazy pale with a huge head, although with not great retention.
I had to struggle with finding much in the aroma, some pine perhaps, with the usual yeastiness showing up later.
Starts dry and piney, with mild bitterness, and a hint of malt.
Nice and crisp, and a tad over-carbonated.
Not what I usually prefer, however...., this would make a good choice in the heat of the summer.

brauseboof, Jan 02, 2010
Photo of nms1987
3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a nice little beer, though maybe not what some would be hoping for from their IPA.

Filtered clear and a golden to amber color. Not the heavy bronze or orange many IPAs are. Big head.

Pleasant, fresh citric nose but not overwhelming, with a little sweetness on it.

The taste is very satisfying. Crisp hoppiness but not the thundering bitterness one might be looking for. Medium-to-light bodied. Again, enjoyable, but maybe lighter than one might expect. This is almost a slightly amped up Drifter Pale Ale or Bell's Pale Ale. It is completely refreshing, and pleasantly hoppy but not especially rich. I like it, but not all would.

Very drinkable, crisp and lovely.

nms1987, Dec 27, 2009
Photo of goldbot
3.78/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle

A: Pours a yellowish-tan color, some haze, lots of frothy eggshell head. Pretty good lacing and head retention, with good carbonation.

S: Mostly hops, also a bit fruity, some spice. There is something there that smells a bit, grains I believe. I can't put my finger on it, but it makes the aroma not very pleasing.

T: Mostly hops again, some pine tree.

M: This beer has a medium body, the carbonation is nice. The feel is slightly watery, but otherwise the carbonation gives it a nice crispness.

D: Overall a drinkable beer, the hoppy bitterness is balanced decently by the fruity and pine flavors.

The smell of this beer was, in my opinion, the downfall. Otherwise it was fairly tasty and well balanced.

goldbot, Dec 25, 2009
Photo of Torps
3.88/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Nice fluffy 3 finger head that dissipates quickly. Nice golden amber and very clear.

I was about to give a mediocre review for this beer. My go to east coast hoppy treat is Troegs Hopback, and I wasn't initially liking Hoptical Illusion in comparison. The more I drink, the more I appreciate this beer for what it is. A good, clean IPA. I get a lot more floral, pineappley hops with a bit of malt in the background. The aroma isn't overwhelming but still appetizing. Maybe a bit "sweet" in comparison to a west coast IPA. It's the kind of beer you can enjoy on a hot summer day @ a bbq or after some chores.

This will surely enter into my summer rotation.

Torps, Dec 19, 2009
Photo of jhammel01
4.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this one at my Work's Christmas party.
Pours a light copper with a decent head without too much retention.

The smell is pretty much all hops! Some citrus - lemon and earthy notes

Tastes of hops (of course) up front with a nice citrus bite from the bitterness. In the finish more hoppiness! A little bit of malt breadiness as well..

Pretty good beer to help pass the night!

jhammel01, Dec 19, 2009
Photo of DerekP
3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured my bottle into a 20-oz mug.

A few snippets from my full review @ http://thelightonbeer.blogspot.com -

"Hoptical Illusion starts out expressing the usual Indian Pale Ale qualities, but halts right before your anticipation for aromatic hoppy flavor proceeds into the realm of expectation. The aromatic hoppy flavors that I'm used to, and I'm sure that you are used to as well, are no where to be found.

Hoptical Illusion is drinkable, and in some respects, enjoyable, but it lacks the well-known IPA flavor that is to be expected when up against IPA aficionados. And what's up with the stale, funky, caramel after taste at the end of my first beer? I just finished, seriously, as I'm writing this, and a strange Milky Way flavor from 1973 just showed up in my mouth. The aftertaste is even coupled with that odd and abnormal, almost indescribable taste that I'm prone to experiencing when throwing back a light, domestic, American Lager from one of the Big-3. Come to think of it, it may be a byproduct of fermentation in stainless steel conicals. The taste is like the foot odor of the beer world. Maybe my buds are just off. Hell, I'm going to have a few more. I still like the beer, and I'm happy to see Blue Point found its way into my zip code. It's just missing the element I think most Indian Pale Ale drinkers go to the particular style of beer for, and that's why I'm telling you, in case you're one of those folks. Still, it's worth a try. After all, I remember chatting with a guy at Krogers in Ripley, WV that disliked Harpoon's IPA because it was "flowery," obviously referring to the hops."

DerekP, Dec 13, 2009
Photo of Blitzstyle
3.9/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a SA glass. Nice thick foamy head, decent retention. Good golden amber color, and some laceing.

A really nice pine scent mixed in with some light citrus notes.

Nice and piney, nice change to the citric way ipas seem to be heading. It does have some citrus notes but dominate pine. Not an overwhelming hop bite some sweet malts sneak in as well.

Solid ipa, smooth and refreshing. Not the biggest ipa out there but quite enjoyable. Medium bodied would buy again.

Blitzstyle, Dec 10, 2009
Photo of beer2day
3.85/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very pale gold with a weak 1/2 finger head. Nothing is retained and not much lacing.

Nose is all pine, but a weak astringent pine. Not inspiring, but not bad.

Starts dry and finishes drier. Very nicely hopped. Lots of pine, a whole lot of pine here. Ever so slightly fruity in the middle, but really just a flash of orange-tangerine.

Feel is dry, but appropriately thick.

Much easier to drink than expected from the aroma. I look forward to the next bottle.

beer2day, Dec 09, 2009
Photo of woosterbill
4.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Prime 16 into a shaker pint.

A: Clear light amber body supporting a finger of fine white head that settles to a cap fairly directly, but leaves decent sticky lace. Kinda boring.

S: Clean, piney hops, and some smooth biscuity malt. Not much here.

T: Solid hop attack from beginning to end, with dominant pine flavors keeping a niggling bit of citrus almost entirely at bay. Just enough malt to keep things balanced without distracting from the bitterness. Not complex at all, but smooth and tasty.

M: Medium-bodied and smooth, with a good amount of rich carbonation. Very good.

D: Nice crisp finish and enjoyable hoppiness make this a very sessionable IPA with a substantial ABV. Great.

Notes: Solid beer, but gets lost easily in a field packed with so many great IPAs. I don't order it often, and never really miss it, but it's a worthy brew nonetheless. It's always nice to see an east coast IPA that focuses so heavily on hops.


woosterbill, Dec 09, 2009
Hoptical Illusion from Blue Point Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 1,516 ratings.