Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Death By Hops - Olde Hickory Brewery

Not Rated.
Death By HopsDeath By Hops

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

175 Reviews
THE BROS
88
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 175
Hads: 516
Avg: 3.89
pDev: 20.05%
Wants: 39
Gots: 69 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Olde Hickory Brewery
North Carolina, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA | 7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ROBORB on 09-22-2010

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (33) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Death By Hops Alström Bros
Reviews: 175 | Hads: 516
Photo of fear025
3.76/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma:Tons of grapefruit assault my nose on first sniff. There's a little orange and peach, and a tiny bit of pine, but mostly grapefruit.

Appearance:Clear and gold in color. Very little visible carbonation. Lots of very white head, with just OK retention.

Taste:This beer packs a pretty big flavorful hop punch. There's grapefruit, apricot, pine, and grapefruit/lemon rind. Actually, I could do without the rind, as it's pretty strong and a little off-putting, but after a few sips, it doesn't bother me as much. The hop bitterness actually increases through the midtaste, and fades very slowly with the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel:This one is about medium thick with low to moderate carbonation. The hops produce a little astringency.

Drinkability:This beer has a lot of complexity once I get past some of the off-flavors from the hops, but those flavors would dissuade me from having a second glass.

 900 characters

Photo of babaracas
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orange-amber with two finger creamy white head that fades to a half inch leaving a few thin rings of lace behind.

Smell: upfront some soft tropical fruit that is overcome by grapefruit peel and a raw, green resiny component. Mild biscuity malt way in the back. Unexpected somewhat melony yeast contribution.

Taste: juicy grapefruit and citrus peel dominate with resinous and spicy additions. Raw oiliness all over this one. Light caramel and biscuit are overwhelmed. Nice hop flavors and serious bitterness.

Light-medium bodied with soft carbonation and a tongue numbing bitter drying finish.

Best (D)IPA out of NC for me (so far).

Best by July 2011.

 669 characters

Photo of SFLpunk
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to cmrillo and Hodgin for this one! 22oz brown glass pry-top bottle. Best By July 2011.

Pours a hazy golden orange amber. Some thin white head.

Nose is all about pale caramel and super extracted hop resin. Orange oil and lemon too.

Palate is juicy and dripping with hops. Lots of candied citrus and, cannabis, and something a little like seaweed.

Great example of the new East Coast IIPA. Reminds me a lot of the Vermont IPA style. Well done.

 453 characters

Photo of wcudwight
4.89/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a golden/amber color with a thin sticky head. Thick sheets of lace line the glass. I expected the head to be a bit thicker but that is being overly picky.
The aroma is out of this world and compares to some of my favorite beers. Pliny, Ruination, Hopslam ect.... It's like sitting in a flower garden smelling a bowl of fresh tropical fruit. Flavor is right up there with my favorite hoppolicious beers. Malt? Where's the malt? Who cares about the malt? This beer is all about fresh tropical fruit with a nice bitterness that sits on the tongue and last forever. Thick sticky mouthfeel with a lasting aftertaste. I'll be tasting this beer tomorrow. Man I can't get enough of it. I don't care what a select few reviewers say. IMO this is a world class DIPA brewed locally here in Western NC. I've been impressed with OHB, especially lately. But OHB you have outdone yourselves here and raised the bar for you and other NC brewers.

 934 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

grabbed a nice sample of this off the cask at barelys tonight while i was in town with the kids for the day. only beer of the day for me so i had to make it good!

ich dark orange amber pour was very cloudy even from the start. A nice head nearly two inches high then came up and over the top, settling down with lots of webbing and lacing down the sides of the glass. Lots of visible carbonation was also apparent from the very beginning. A very nice overall look, classic for the style.

Aroma is very fresh, lots of ripe, astringent citrus notes coming through the air almost immediately. Very floral and juicy. As it warmed a light bit of pineapple and grapefruit start to separate them, but there was by no means any bit of a malty balance here, this was a straight up hop lovers dream. Biting, sharp hops pierce the tongue immediately. Again lots of fresh fruity notes, orange, grapefruit, citrus, tons of sharp hops. Very nice light body is well carbonated and this lends itself well to hiding any ABV that might be a concern. Loads of follow through here as the flavor seems to longer on the palate for what seems like forever before you can finally shake that last taste.

Overall this was a great, great DIPA. So soft and bitingly sharp with the flavors, light, easy to drink and very enjoyable. Glad I have a couple bottles and would not mind having this all the time.

 1,379 characters

Photo of portia99
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle (best by July '11) received as another fine extra from jpmclaug...as always, big thanks! Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - A slow, steady pours results in a well hazed dirty amberish orange color with a finger of cream colored foam that dies fairly quickly and leaves behind some sparse lacing on the glass.

S - Very fruity hops, sweet and citrusy with lots of oranges and grapefruit. Some tropical fruits too - mango especially. A hint of mild caramel malt kicks thru the hops but not much else in the aroma from the malt.

T - Fruity and tropical hop flavors up front - mango and pineapple dominate with some grapefruit subtley in the background a bit. Bitterness is mid level and clean. Caramelly malt makes a small contribution, pretty much in line with the intensity in the aroma.

M - Body is medium with matching carbonation level. A good clean bitterness stays behind past the swallow and encourages another sip. Alcohol is noticeable but not distracting...adds some flavors and a bit of feel,although I wouldn't go so far as to call it warmth.

D - A nice IPA...definitely hop focused as I like it. Hop flavors are good, but don't stand out in the crowd of excellent IPA's out there. A solid beer though in anyone's book.

 1,241 characters

Photo of xnicknj
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into tulip glass. best before july '11. thanks to CarolinaKevin for this extra

Pours a slightly hazed auburn orange with a very thin head, almost nonexistent actually. Some bubbles of film and lacing on the glass.

Nice flair of citrusy hops with a dose of bitterness. Some grainy, doughy malt with sweeter caramel and a touch of honey with fruit.

Surprisingly bitter up front driven by grapefruit and rind. Biting hoppiness alongside some citrusy fruit flavors and a bit of lemon peel. Honey and caramel swirled into the bready malt base. More grapefruit hoppiness and very faint warmth in the finish.

Medium bodied, a bit higher carbonation, sticky and dry on the tongue with lingering tendencies. This is pretty decent drinking, the alcohol is masked almost completely, and the hop profile delivers. I thought the appearance and nose lacked a bit but the flavor was a hit for me.

 907 characters

Photo of jamie2dope
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks goes out to mikesgroove for throwing in this extra in our recent trade. A hazy orange color this beer is, with a finger of white heading. Spicy hops come to mind first with the aroma, followed by fruit: peaches and pineapple especially. The hop flavor is very prominent in the beginning of the taste. They start off very spicy, and then become more fruity as it settles. The alcohol can definitely be detected, but it isn't a deterrent. I would have guessed the ABV was higher than 7%. At the same time I really like that they placed this right on the border between regular and imperial IPA. This beer definitely gets the point across as far as hops and flavor. I very much look forward to trying more beers from Olde Hickory.

 740 characters

Photo of BulbMan
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 22 at Brawley's on a recent trip to NC... Pours a very nice copper color with a fair amount of head. Some pleasing grapefruit on the nose. Didn't know what to expect from this one, but found it very nicely and surprisingly balanced. Hoppy per the name with some bitterness on the finish, but more DIPA sweetness than I expected for 7.0% - feels like closer to 9% or 10%. Mouthfeel is medium at least and really pleasant. Death by Hops gets even nicer as it warms.

Search this out if you're in NC and give it a try. I would definitely buy again.

 558 characters

Photo of Bendurgin
3.94/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Craytonic for this. Poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy light orange color with just a layer of foam that dissapears about as soon as it forms. The smells has a real nice citrusy aroma with a good hop profile. Piney hop flavor and citrus sweetness to round out the flavor. It's good. Nice feel to this, light crisp body with a nice bitter finish. Another real nice DIPA here, real glad to be able to try it.

 415 characters

Photo of BarrytheBear
2.77/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22 oz courtesy of Fletcher. Thank you!

Orange pour with spotty dish soap bubbles that chunk and clump without cohesion.

Tropical and floral with a slight hint of bitterness and little in terms of malt...anticipating good things here

Damn you anticipation! Thin and aggressively bitter. Leafy, chalky, vegetation, wrapped in a bitch slap of an angry grandmother's backhand. Promise of the nose is broken like so many adolescent secret alliances.

Not feeling this. Mediocre in that hops seem to be thrown haphazardly into the mix and the results are a letdown.

 563 characters

Photo of DaveAnderson
4.47/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to unionturf for trade.

After drinking a lot of DIPAs, it's easy to forget what's great about IPAs. Thankfully, Olde Hickory's Death By Hops brought be back.

It pours a nice hazy straw-amber, with a modest (but not colorless) head. Lacing is minimal, which suggests a clean finish, and that is exactly what this beer delivers.

It smells great. I have to confess a proclivity toward aromatic beers, so this puts me in happy land. The bottle says it's fruity, but I'm not buying. This is a hop bomb all the way. No, wait -- that sounds pejorative. Let's call it hop fireworks. I can hold my nose in the glass and just breathe, like when I get a really profound blanco tequila -- the herbal subtleties reveal themselves in due time.

There is no letdown when I drink. I was afraid this might sneak some DIPA sweetness in, so I was relieved when it did not. It has a classic IPA body, with lots of extra floral hoppiness and a satisfying, lingering bitterness that is not overpowering.

I shared this bomber with 3 others, but would have been happy to drink it -- and another -- by myself. Ahhh, the joy of an IPA. Good to be back.

 1,137 characters

Photo of brstls4drmrs
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a golden amber color with a white frothy head. The head lingers on the top for a bit.

S - Heavy floral hops with some citrus lingers and pine scents. Other fruits often splash around such as some lemon and orange. A refreshing smell.

T - A citrus pine with a hops of a punch.

M - A very crisp drink with a tangy bitter aftertaste. It almost feels a bit cleansing to the palate. Leaves my mouth very dry after a few seconds.

D - The bitter & tangy aftertaste prevents me from drinking too much of this brew. Its overall a crisp, refreshing brew. A good smelling and tasting HOP brew.

 599 characters

Photo of gford217
4.32/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big, big thanks to Trevor for this bottle.

Pours a bright hazy amber with a medium beige head that recedes slowly and leaves a clump of foam in the middle and very little lacing.

The aroma is fantastic with tons of juicy citrus and slightly resinous floral hops. Lots of pineapple, oranges and mango with pine as a complement. Biscuity malts are present but the hops are the star.

The taste is just as good and starts with a scathingly bitter pithy citrus kick. Really just fills the mouth with oranges, grapefruits and pine. The bready malts are there to support the hops which leaves a big ol' bitter finish.

The mouthfeel is light to medium (for a DIPA) but on the heavier side of an IPA with sticky hops leaving their mark on the palate after each sip.

Well, this is an excellent beer. I struggle with how to categorize it as it's not quite big enough to stack up to the big DIPAs. That said, it's 7% and is likely the best 7% IPA/DIPA I've had in a long time. If we're going to call it a DIPA, then the drinkability is INSANELY high. Whatever, kudos to Olde Hickory for this beauty.

 1,092 characters

Photo of cavedave
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to bullywee for this Olde Hickory palate expander.

It pours a finely cloudy gold, topped by an off-white wafer of head that relaxes to a bubbly skim. Some mountains of lace hug the glass.

As this baby opens up the vegetal aspects really crank into the nose, sharp pine tar, crazy herbosity mingle with a deep bitter note that sends this to the moon.

Where to begin here? As it warms the stupid complexity of the hop profile begins to grab hold. It's a journey that starts with some bitter pith fronting candy sweet and pine. At the edge is vegetal, sweet dank caya, deeply herbal and strong. When it reaches near room temp. the vegetal takes over. Sweet candy turns to ganja love, the bittering becomes a blessed drying in the finish, and keeps a clean presence on the tongue. The bittering here is wonderful, best part of this taste profile.

Mouthfeel is near perfect for style, well attenuated yet resinous and thick, generous dollops of concentrated hop goodness give the mouth that wonderful feel of a finest IIPA.

Drinkability for the average drinker probably won't be as high as how I rate this special beer of deeply herbal aspects. I rate em as I taste em, this baby is delicious to a hop head like me.

Impression: This is a more refined and flavorful beer in the Gubna school of excessive vegetal goodness, and deep hop excess. I recommend it only to those who, like me, revel in the danker enjoyments of extremely resinous hops.

 1,452 characters

Photo of chaz410
3.45/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've had this fella in multiple forms but I'm drinking it off of a keg I have at the house.
Pours a mild amber hued body with froathy white head.
Smells of grapefruit, lemon grass, pine, and citrus rinde. It has an undertow of caramel aroma and some grainey astringencies but it's mostly sharp hop citrus flavors that dance in the nostrils.
Taste is similar to smell initially. Some heavy citrus and rinde flavors masked over caramel and the typical two-row base sweetness. There's a decent amount of hop veggie taste at the finish and a very bitter bite that seems accentuated by the veggie notes.
THe mouthfeel is decent and medium bodied. Nothing outstanding but nothing lacking for an IPA.
Considering the level of bitterness in the beer I believe it's very drinkable

 771 characters

Photo of Gigantor
3.11/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I really like old hickory, but I must admit I was a bit disapointed with there latest release of death by hops. There beer looks really good and has a strong hop aroma, but the taste leaves something lacking. I cant quit put my finger on what is going on with the taste but something is missing. I origonally had this beer on draft with there 1st release a while ago and loved it! The smell, taste and look of the beer was right on. But since they have bottled it with this most recent batch Im not sure if the recipe has changed or what they did differently with this bay=tch, but I dont think it is the same beer that is was on its initial release. I do love old hickory and will continue to drink there beer, but untill they figure out what went wrong with the death by hops Ill probably stick to something else.

 815 characters

Photo of yeahnatenelson
2.81/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle generously sent by Onenote81 - Thanks, pal!
Best By July 2011

Appearance -- Pours a hazy amber hue with a slim creamy/bubbly white head. Mild amount of lacing. Not too shabby.

Smell -- Grapefruit, juicy citrus, peaches, leafy hops, and caramel. A few goofy elements, but good moreover.

Taste -- Lots of grapefruit and juicy fruit up front. Malt base is all soft caramels; probably too sweet, but not offensive. Toward the finish the train comes off the rails as the flavor profile becomes completely dominated by the taste of bitter leafy hops, like sucking on a hop cone in the worst way possible. Finish is all leafy bitter vegetation.

Mouthfeel -- Medium-bodied with very mild carbonation. Meh.

Drinkability -- This beer would have been SOOOO much better if that bracingly bitter vegetable flavor was gone. Malt base is a little too sweet, the carbonation is too gentle, but there are still plenty of redeemable features. However, the sum of the flaws outweighs the sum of the good features.

 1,006 characters

Photo of n2185
3.45/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a clear, honey orange with about a finger of frothy white head. The head recedes into a thin film with some big bubbles forming a ring around the glass and very little lacing.

S: Sweet orange and pineapple on the nose followed by some piny bitterness. It smells good, but it's a bit muted--I really had to agitate the beer to pick up on all the aromas.

T: Taste is of grapefruit rind at first followed by a strong pine flavor and some bitterness. The aftertaste is quite bitter, coating your tongue.

M: Medium body and carbonation with no unpleasant oily texture that many piny IPAs get.

D: It goes down pretty smooth, but the lingering bitterness keeps it from being extremely drinkable.

Overall, a pretty good IPA.

 730 characters

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to dgfair for sending me this nice bomber (best tasted by July 2011 date on label) which was poured into a pint glass. The beer pours with a hazy orange color and a 1-finger head which diminishes rather quickly. There is decent lacing throughout the session. The smell has a lot of citrus characters and is somewhat floral - juicy fruity. The taste was fantastic. It has a slight sweetness to it up front and then it gets somewhat bitter, but in a good way (in a HopSlam type of effect). Medium bodied and a decent level of carbonation going on. A very nice dry hopped DIPA overall! Quite sessionable, indeed.

 616 characters

Photo of seedsofchaos
2.43/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Received this local as an extra from Onenote81. Freshness marker states to enjoy before July 2011. Drank on February 11th, 2011. Death by Hops is a rather assertive name. The blue sky and clouds on the bottle seem to suggest a heavenly death. I approach this death with high hopes.

A murky orange in appearance, this brew reminds me of one of my first homebrews. Under carbonated and not much lacing to speak of either. The aroma is a bit of a confused mess. Very vegetative, an overload of piney hops takes precedence in my nostrils. Pine echoes in the flavor with more vegetative qualities; as if I am drinking water with grass clipping, pine cones, pine needles and bark in it. Bitterness leans aggressively towards astringent. Lots of early addition hops, it would seem, were preferred by the brewer over dry-hopping (which IMHO is what this beer needed). Malts are overshadowed by this subpar hop bill. A little biscuit comes through but not enough to really grasp it.

This beer isn't terrible. It's really not. It seems like the brewery is probably very new and is still learning a lot about the brewing art. Death by Hops needs to take down its IBUs and focus on some dry-hopping with a variety that will help accentuate the taste of the beer: perhaps some Amarillos. Drinkability is low for a beer geek as the bitterness is not complimentary and well-roundedness is blown out of the water with pine. Drinkability is non-existent for a non beer geek as this brew will taste like utter ass to someone unfamiliar with hops.

Below average for the style but I drank my pint and a bud shared the rest. We both drank it all so I can't say this was a complete failure by Olde Hickory's part. If a rep of the brewer does happen to check this site, might I also suggest a writer for label descriptions. They're a bit... blah.

 1,826 characters

Photo of nc41
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really a surprise to be honest, this is one very good IPA brewed right here in Nc, and the best one I've had from in state yet. Similar IMO to something like Smutty, more earthy abd resiny thn fruity. Really drinkable at 7% which kinda surprises me that they call it a DIPA, it doesn't drink like one in any way shape or form. Well worth a try and any IPA lover will love this one, there's nothing not to like. And it's NOT expensive. If you like IPA's like Smutty and Hop Devil this one kinda fits right in.

 508 characters

Photo of koopa
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22oz bomber received in a trade with a buddy.

Appearance: Pours an attractive and fairly transparent dirty orange to copper with a 1 finger white crown that displays good retention and lace.

Smell: A nice bouquet of candied orange, grapefruit, and a dominant floral hop note. Some underlying onion and cut grass notes are present.

Taste: The same ingredients as the nose but more vibrant and enjoyable. Finishes with a nice lasting herbal hop bitterness. Flawed but enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: A touch thin but not off putting in any way.

Drinkability: Exceptional.

This brew has flaws but I still enjoyed it.

 610 characters

Photo of ssuggs01
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite beers right now.. Cant get enough. On tap at Duckworth's served in a pilsner. THe appearence is top notch, hazy orange color with about a half inch of white foam. Can barely see my fingers through the glass. Smells of wonderful floral hop aromas. Some grapefruit or other hints of citrus. Taste is consistent with the smell and the slightly creamy and full mouthfeel leaves you wanting another sip. Hop taste doesnt linger in your mouth for long which I like because I can easily enjoy on of my favorite stouts afterwards if I please

 552 characters

Photo of beerdown77
3.52/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a perfect example of a smaller brewery putting out a product that is fine if you are already a fan. It is probably fun to go to the brewery and have a fresh IPA from the tap room. However, I just can't say that this beer has the well-rounded qualities that are evident in beers from bigger operations. The appearance was not memorable and I thought that it was a little harsh and dirty in flavor. If you want hops, look no further. It's almost as if they garnish it with hops just before serving it. It took me a while to put this one down, but I would like to give Olde Hickory another shot. I love trying local stuff!

 627 characters

Death By Hops from Olde Hickory Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 175 ratings.