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River Horse Hop Hazard Pale Ale - River Horse Brewing Co.

River Horse Hop Hazard Pale AleRiver Horse Hop Hazard Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

449 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 449
Reviews: 265
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 13.92%

Brewed by:
River Horse Brewing Co. visit their website
New Jersey, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-14-2002)
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Ratings: 449 | Reviews: 265 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Act25

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My 2nd pour of this into a tulip resulted in a higher review.
It's really quite good. I like the style, it's a solid APA, with character. Any horsey stink is gone from my previous review. I'd drink this again for sure, and it's the best I've enjoyed from this brewer - which as a Jersey guy - I really want to like!

Bottle poured into .5l cylinder. Fresh in Central NJ!
I am a fan of this style and want to be a fan of this beer, but it falls short.

A: Pours cloudy amber w orange tones, very light amountsof carbonation. Unfiltered for sure as it remains cloudy. The beer has a 2 finger creamy beige head that slowly reduces to a very long lasting quarter thick head covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing.

S: Unusual. Stinky (in a good way). Strong aromas of oily pine hops and wet grass. Not much caramel malts. Alot going on. Good meditation ale.

T: Alot going on indeed. Pepper, wet hay, barnyard, citrus, along with a peppery, oily hop flavor. To me it's over done and not 'fresh enough' like a great fresh APA or IPA (Dales, Titan, Stone). Was enjoyable with sauced scallops and shrimp cocktail, good with seafood.

M: Medium bodied with light carbonation. Slightly oily/sticky, not a super after taste. Not tingly enough, weak on bitter, clean finish, weak on malts.

O: This is an intense, stinky APA. There's 5 hops and I think they are battling. There's a barnyard thread that runs through all River horse - they taste horse stall like! Wet hay and horse order.

Much better regional beers to be found in Doylestown PA (Victory) or Harrisburg (Troegs). As a NJ guy, I'd like River horse to make a more refreshing and simpler ale.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2014 01:51:45 | More by Act25
Photo of IronLover


3.71/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Weathered copper orange with a thick viscous appearance. Poured with a short white foam that reduced to a soapy cap. Light, fresh pine hop aroma with sweet caramel malt beneath. Medium bodied with aggressive, tangy carbonation and a semi-dry finish. Pine hop flavors throughout with a hint of lemon up front and caramel malty backbone throughout. Finished with a lingering pine hop bitterness and burnt caramel malt aftertaste. Intense malt character and hop bitterness, but well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2014 01:09:04 | More by IronLover
Photo of Johnny_Muir

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle into tulip glass. My third beer from River Horse, but my least favorite thus far. However, the other two (Winter Freeze and Tripel Horse) were fantastic, so I'm going by a high bar here. Labeled an American Pale Ale but maltier than I expected, which isnt a bad thing, just not normally my cup of tea. Or beer. Still, even for those who dont enjoy the malty side of life as much, its a good beer. Would definitely buy again.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2014 04:25:33 | More by Johnny_Muir
Photo of hopley


4.14/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Really like this beer - not amazing in any respect - but solid in all. Nice heavy amber color with nice lacing. Medium body feel accentuated by the solid but not overbearing layer of head, and nice to capture the decent lacing by revolving the glass 60 degrees or so for each sip.

Sortof tastes a little like a Longtrail Double Bagger but not at thick or heavy - this one is nice and thick malty on the front end with a small amount of back end bitterness. Very tasty.

Great frigging beer!

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2013 03:12:12 | More by hopley
Photo of slader

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Smooth. Coffee tincture in the profile. Not very hoppy. Calling this APA hop hazard is a bit misleading and it seems like a misnomer. I took one of the tors at the old Lambertville brewery before they moved up to Ewing. Great people who really took the time to answer questions and explain why their unique.

Serving type: bottle

06-20-2013 03:03:26 | More by slader
Photo of dbrauneis

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a bottle at Village Pourhouse in Hoboken, NJ

A: Pours a cloudy amber in color with some orange + ruby red highlights, light amounts of visible carbonation, and a fair amount of dark sediment in the bottom of the glass. The beer has a finger tall creamy/foamy light beige head that slowly reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of pine hops with a touch of oiliness and just a hint of spicy hops. Light amounts of caramel malts can be detected in the background.

T: There is a light flavor of caramel malts with just a touch of sweetness underneath the strong flavors of the oily pine hops and moderate notes of spicy hops. Moderate to strong amounts of bitterness which fade in intensity but linger for quite a while. Not too aggressive in the bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly oily/slick.

O: This is a pretty intense APA and I'm not sure that I could have more than one of these in a session - there is just too much intensity to the pine hops, somewhat overpowering the other flavors in the beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2013 22:04:30 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of Huffs

New York

4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured to a dense, tan head that lasted through most of the beer and laced exceptionally well. Appearance was a hazy amber orange with a very mild aroma which had hints floral, citrus and malt hints. Taste was slightly malty and caramel with a bitter finish. Mouthfeel was full and creamy with a dry, slightly bitter aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2013 03:09:18 | More by Huffs
Photo of SolipsismalCat


3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Cloudy amber with small particles and three-finger, white, creamy head that lasted more than several minutes. Good lacing.

S: Sweet caramel malt and citrus hops.

T: Moderate sweetness and light bitterness. Sweet malt and light fruit flavors with a bit of hops. Kind of mild.

M: Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Kind of watery.

O: The beer looks nice, but nothing stands out.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2012 02:07:33 | More by SolipsismalCat
Photo of GiantMidget


3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a River Horse variety pack, served in a bottle.

Poured into pint glass. Clearly an unfiltered APA by the appearance. Minimal head and lacing.

Nothing unique about the smell, hoppiness and malt.

It has a good flavor, although the slight sediment from the unfiltered nature is evident.

I'm more of an IPA than an APA guy but I can say that the hop nature is clear in this with a malt clarity afterwards.
Strong carbonation.

Overall a very solid effort at an APA, while the unfiltered nature makes it different than many others I have had.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2012 22:31:26 | More by GiantMidget
Photo of JayQue


3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A sweet, easy-sipping Pale Ale. Poured a hazy iced tea color into a pint glass. Smallish white head, less than average retention and some bands of lacing on the glass.

Smell is sweet/caramel malt, fairly mild.

Balanced taste. Maltiness is more pronounced. Sweet caramel malt and a kind of apple juice flavor. Just enough grassy hops to keep the sweetness from getting too cloying. Overall pretty pleasant flavor, goes down easy.

Mouthfeel is crisp and rich enough for the style. Goes down smooth.

Overall a pretty good beer, but a bit high octane for a session beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2012 01:38:09 | More by JayQue
Photo of magine


4.08/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

Pours a deep dark orange, almost amber. Unfiltered and cloudy with tons of sediment suspended throughout. Off white head; dense and lots of bubbles. Lots of very nice lace and a thick layer head remains. Very, very good looking APA.

Brew smells of lots of oily hops; fruits and floral with some caramel malt. Very good aroma here. Smells like it is going to be a full bodied brew. Good nose.

Brew is full bodied; creamy smooth upfront. Creamy malts up front and then a fruity hop sweetens things up in the middle and nice oily floral, bittering finish that is semi dry. very good flavors and great feel here. A complex interesting APA. Great stuff.

This is a great APA here. Case worthy and very sessionable. I love unfiltered offerings, this is among my favorites of the style.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2012 00:54:34 | More by magine
Photo of jlindros


3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to juliusseizure (Reddit) for this one, although I think I waited a little too long to drink it, but no date so screw.

Pours a very light fizzy head that fades very quickly to almost nothing, although the foam on top leaves bits of lacing on the sides, over a semi hazy slight sediment laden coppery orange red colored beer.

Nose has some hops, light citrus and candied orange peel, little fruity stone fruit hop, touch tropical fruit, touch pine and grassy even, with some caramel malts, plenty of malts underneath.

Taste starts with a light sweet malt, chewy malts, with some caramel, toffee, and toasty reddish malts before the hops kick in. Fairly bitter but not a lot, with a light citrus candied orange peel, little fruity hop flavors again, hint spicy pine hops. Balanced fairly well with lighter overall hop presence but typical in line with APA. Finish is still slightly sweet, fairly bitter as the bitterness ramps and it dries more on the later finish, more spicy slight piney and citrusy hops.

Mouth is med to slightly fuller bodied, decent carb.

overall pretty good, nothing special, decent hop presence, nice malt profile and balance, drinkable and tasty, wish I remembered to have this a bit fresher, and wish there was a date on it.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2012 23:50:48 | More by jlindros
Photo of alexgash


4.38/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle.

Cool hippo. Very unfiltered pale ale as the body is a murky, soupy mix of burnt sienna, yeast particles, and hop detritus (I hope). Dense blanket of creamy beige head (with a few darker sediment specks interspersed). good lacing. Mostly hoppy nose with notes of orange, pine resin, mango, and nettles. Decent malt aroma as well with lots of candied fruit.

Herbal, tonic bitterness up front. Becomes more resinous and piny as sweetish candy and fruit malts come in. Floral hop notes as bitterness increases toward the finish. Dries out a little, but there is some nice lingering candied apple malt that goes great with the floral bitterness. medium-bodied with a creamy, lush feel.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2012 03:28:24 | More by alexgash
Photo of Samp01

New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy brownish amber with a large lasting white head with good lacing. Aroma and Taste of caramel malt, yeast, citrusy, some grapefruit notes, citrus floral hops. Palate is a medium body, crisp, with good carbonation. The finish is sweet caramel malt, yeast, fruity with some good citrusy floral hops bitterness for balance. A good nicely balanced, solid brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2012 20:03:03 | More by Samp01
Photo of Lordquackingstic

New York

2.58/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Dark copper, murky, definitely unfiltered.

S: Weak hoppy aroma, slight malt. Nothing special.

T: Better than the smell. Hop forward pale ale with slight fruitiness. Malt definitely present, but well balanced with the hops. Sort of a metallic taste, but not an unpleasant one.

M: Very full bodied, especially for an APA.

O: Not bad, just not great. I love APAs, and I love unfiltered ales, but this one didn't impress me. I'd drink it again if offered, but I wouldn't buy it.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2012 17:38:19 | More by Lordquackingstic
Photo of NiceTaps

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a room temp pint glass from a 12oz bottle.

A- orange-copper color, very clean. barely a one-finger head yet great lacing. This beer looks good in a pint glass.

S-Honey for sure, a note of caramel as well. There is also a touch of roasted malt to balance out that sweet aroma from the honey and caramel. Suttle.

T-it is kind of sweet and malty but there is a clean hop finish without any bitterness. The sweetness lingers via the honey.

M-good carbonation and a sticky feel. I'd say a 'full body feel for an APA'.

O-a friendly, accessable brew. This would be a hit at a gathering of non-craft drinkers.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2012 20:33:21 | More by NiceTaps
Photo of MDDMD


3.4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-amber slightly cloudy coloration with a a nice white head and a little lacing

S-light malts and caramel with a little grassy note

T-solid malt flavor with some caramel and mild hop character, not much bitterness

F-medium body with moderate carbonation

O-a decent, but not spectacular APA, would have liked a little more balance with hop flavors and a little too sweet for my taste

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2012 03:03:08 | More by MDDMD
Photo of ChrisPratz


3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep dark, unfiltered brown with lots of tiny bubbles. Pours nice with just under 1 finger of foamy head. Color really jumps out at me. Head disappears to a very nice amount of lace all the way across that sticks to the sides of the glass as I drink more and more. Seems like alot of carbonation coming thru but lace never seems to dissipate.

S: Nice malts with some sweet scents drifting thru. Light citrus and some floral aromas coming out. Gets more defined as the beer warms.

T. Citrus at the start, leading to some maltyness and sweet brown sugar/caramel flavors. Hops hits at the back of the palette with an enjoyable bitterness that isn't overpowering like some APA's i've had lately. Lingers a good amount and some citrus bitter is present among the hops.

M: Slightly more then average carbonation, and with 6.5% ABV I was expecting a more dryer feel but its not there. Adds to the enjoyment.

O: Not a bad APA in my opinion. Flavor is nice, clean and crisp. Appearance is really a highlight here to compliment the flavors. Catching myself swirling and sniffing more all the way thru to the bottom of the glass. Would def like to try this on tap and compare.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2012 00:13:21 | More by ChrisPratz
Photo of mikeg67

New Jersey

3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle from a variety pack. Pours slightly hazy-orange with a long lasting white head and a lot of lacing. Aroma is of caramel malt, some citrusy hops and ripe fruit. Body is full and very crisp. A lot of grapefruit hops balanced on the palate by caramel malt and ripe fruit. Finish is long lasting, dry, grapefruity. Nice APA

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2012 00:54:05 | More by mikeg67
Photo of bogus564

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 fl. oz., poured into a pint glass.

I’m a happy man. My beer fridge is more than half full, the Devils are playing hockey tonight, and I’m going to have myself a beer from my home state of New Jersey.

A: Nice color – it looks like the jersey of a University of Texas player. Having been born in El Paso, Texas, I can get behind that. The head, with a reasonably aggressive pour, goes to 3 cm, and is the color of an orange rind. The head does not last more than a minute, though, and leaves a bit of lace on the side of the glass.

S: Okay, now I’m ready to get into this one; I’m picking up hops up front, and citrus hops at that. I’m getting, oddly enough, orange and grapefruit, then some roasted malt, dark fruit and either brown sugar or molasses. There’s certainly enough to keep you entertained and interested.

T: It’s not what I expected, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s a little sweeter than I expected up front, competing with the hoppy sensation. The hops stick with you on the back end, not unpleasantly. All the things I smelled are there for the tasting, in good proportion. The brown sugar or molasses turned out to be dark syrup, which worked out just fine, in my humble opinion. Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about, Willis!

M: It’s very good. It’s bordering on medium-bodied, with good carbonation, and it washes nicely over the palate, leaving a hoppy finish. If you like a nice hoppy beer, you will certainly appreciate that. Man, that’s good. Or as they say where I grew up, das ist ein sehr gut bier, fantastich.

O: It’s a solidly good beer. It tastes as good as it looks, and it’s a perfect counterbalance to the saltiness of a bunch of potato chips. I should have bought two of these, but alas, I’m out of chips, and I don’t think this beer goes that well with yogurt. Until the next time, everyone.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2012 01:25:32 | More by bogus564
Photo of CHickman

New York

3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy copper brownish color with a tremendous 3 finger foamy beige head that looked like a malt shake with tons of bubbles of all different sizes in it that faded very slowly, leaving foamy stick lacing on the sides. This head rose like dough baking in an oven, and I can’t recall ever seeing a pale ale that reacted like this out of the bottle – it was volcanic and seemed like this beer couldn’t wait to be released; good stuff to look at, so bonus points for the looks. An unfiltered American Pale Ale indeed.

Smells of floral hops, herbs, roasted grains, sweet malt, caramel, grapefruit, lemon, citrus hops, flowers, fresh cut grass and fruit; basically it smells like a nice late spring day, with soft, sweet hints of flowers, citrus and herbs.

Tastes of floral hops, herbs, grains, sweet malt, caramel, grapefruit, lemon, citrus hops, flowers, fresh cut grass, apple, pear, perhaps apricot, light honey, tea leaf, parsley, light yeast, medicine and some earthy notes; a robust pale ale, but not as hoppy as the label would lead you to believe. Flavor was good, and well balanced, hiding the alcohol very well.

Mouthfeel is zesty and smooth at the same time, with a medium body, average carbonation and a slightly bitter aftertaste that trails off herbal and grainy. A very nice pale ale that I would definitely have again.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2012 04:57:20 | More by CHickman
Photo of kolbe21


3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a variety case of River Horse and found this in it

Poured a the bottle into a pint glass, left a fluffy head with lacing around. The head eventually disappeared after 2 sips.

A: Dark burnt orange in color, it is an unfiltered beer

S: Sweet and floral scents but not over powering like most pale ales.

T: A lot sweeter than I expected, little bit bitter on the after taste. I really like the taste of this beer, probably one of the sweetest APA's I've had in a while

M: Very easy to drink, while tasting great as well. Very low carbonation level also.

Overall i did enjoy this beer. I would definitely order it if i notice at any of the local bars. Maybe I will even buy another variety case I enjoyed all 5 beers I had from River Horse so far. (Special, Lager, Hop Hazard, Oatmeal Milk, and Belgian Freeze)

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2012 03:35:01 | More by kolbe21
Photo of facundoCNB

New Jersey

4.2/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - copper colored ale, head quickly disappeared and turned into a good amount of lacing

S - very sweet smells, some caramels even perhaps?, slight citrus/flower aroma

T - initial bitterness followed up by a very delicious sweet flowery hops

M - very easy going down and leas the tongue wanting more!

O - a great pale ale very close in comparison to sierra nevada's pale ale, but sweeter (which i think makes it more enjoyable)

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2012 00:15:07 | More by facundoCNB
Photo of Tucquan


3.73/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on 2012-01-19 in Columbia, PA. This bottle was given to me today by my barbers, Gary and Joel. Apparently, they've started an informal beer club where they and customers exchange beer. They've got a fridge in the back. Guess I'm now in the club. Cool.

A - Very hazy, golden-orange (unfiltered) with a giant 3.5 finger pillowy eggshell head into a nonic glass. Head fades slowly leaving mild lace.

S - Pleasant hop floral, honeysuckle, light malt. Not very strong.

T - Sweet light-medium roasted malt, ripe apricot, pine, reasonable leafy and citric bitterness as it dries. Tastes pretty good.

M - Light-medium body and medium carbonation. Smooth a bit effervescent.

O - Pretty decent brew. I've got to get my haircut more often.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2012 22:28:57 | More by Tucquan
Photo of DrDemento456


3.78/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - A pretty hazy amber brown with a slight layer of head that looks very sticky.

S - Initial smell is a very nicely hoped pale ale. Not so much as a "hazard" but a good balance of hops to malt.

T - For me the initial taste is mostly malt maybe a touch of hops in the finish but nothing to label "hazard" since it has no lingering hop flavors. Not bad though!

M - Light to medium a very balanced pale.

Overall I wouldn't write this off as a bad beer just not as hoppy as the label described. A very balanced pale ale overall. Would get it again but not distributed to PA

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2012 07:13:38 | More by DrDemento456
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River Horse Hop Hazard Pale Ale from River Horse Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 449 ratings.