Hop Monster | Paper City Brewery Co., Inc.

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Hop MonsterHop Monster
Very Good
160 Ratings
Hop MonsterHop Monster

Brewed by:
Paper City Brewery Co., Inc.
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by UnionMade on 10-30-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 160 |  Reviews: 138
Reviews by Longstaff:
Photo of Longstaff
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wanted to update my review since I picked up a bottle to see if things have changed, and yes, they have. The over hopped, rubbery aromas and flavors are gone and now this is an enjoyable drink. Plenty of bitterness that is somewhat balanced, good hop aroma and flavor complement the bitterness. I would personally like to see a little more fruity hop aromas and flavors, but I guess you can't have everything.

10/03 Review - 2.45 Overall rating:
What did they do to the lovely tap version they made of Hop Monster? See my review here : http://beeradvocate.com/beer/rate_results/123/6889/latest/0/Longstaff/

This is nothing like it, and its just plain bad. Resinous hop character just overshadowed everything in this beer giving it a burnt rubber type aroma and taste. Tried on two seperate occasions, and each time had to dump it down the drain. Gave away the other 4 bottles to poor unsuspecting victims. When extreme beer goes bad.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.01/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle. Pours into my glass a light amber orange hue with a half inch of creamy white head on top. Looks nice in the glass. Aromas start with light toasty, grainy malts with a buttery, caramel aspect. Very herbal, somewhat floral hops with a touch of citrus. Grape aroma is there as well. Interesting.

First sip brings a somewhat sweet caramel malt upfront with a grainy, lightly toasted aspect to it. Acrid herbal hops move in with some floral and grapefruit aspects as well. The hops end up tasting dirty and a bit of a muddy mix. An odd grape flavor is present. Flows down with brash bitterness that lingers. Hops run the show here, but the overall flavor profile is a let down.

Mouthfeel is creamy and big with a nice viscous quality to it. Good carbonation that works well but becomes a little too prickly on the finish. Overall, I just didn't find this one that tasty, seems a bit muddled with an odd aftertaste. Just not my cup of tea.

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Photo of Doomcifer
4.14/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy Orange/Dark Peach color, providing not much of a head and leaving behind hardly any lacing to speak of. Smell of sweet floral hops, grassy, grapefruit, caramel, citrus, tangerines. I was pretty caught by pleasant surprise by the taste. Much grapefruit to speak of with a solid malty backbone to balance things out a bit. Very grassy, a bit piney, a floral hop overload. Finishes off semi-dry with a lingering grapefruit bitterness that latches onto the palate forever. I would say this brew is like a souped-up Smuttynose IPA, with a malty component. I am pleasantly surprised, to say the least. Not to mention the Brewery is only about 40 minutes from my house. Mouthfeel is rich and velvety, with good caarbonation. I would condier this great beer to very drinkable. A definite pleasure.

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Photo of Jason
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

$8.95 a six pack @ Charles Street Liquors, Boston, MA:


Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Decent foaming action, thin white lacing leaves a modest trail down the glass. The hazy golden hue shows some carbonation.

Smell: Big aroma of warm ripe tropical fruit, tree bark, pine needles and a faint fusel alcohol. Very aromatic in almost a pungent kind of way.

Taste: Very juicy, a tab pungent and puckering with lots of piney, tobacco-like, grapefruit rind and tree bark hop flavor and bitterness. A decent malt base with ample pale malt sweetness, almost sugary. Fuming alcohol in the end shows off the strength. The finish dries up quick with a long drawn out scathing bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and slick on the tongue, the slickness increases with a bold body showing after the carbonation drops out.

Notes: This is a rude Imperial IPA, it smacks the palate around until it can’t take anymore. Each sip is more blissful abuse … brews in the raw like this I learn to enjoy even though they don’t hold back.

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Photo of warriorsoul
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The latest batch from Paper City...thanks to Downtown in Davis for always keeping their beers stocked.
Pours a real brilliant golden orange w/ a tremendous amount of fluffy cloud-like, bright white head...lacing is thick and has great hold.
Spicy hops hit the nose with a slight alcohol burn...I forgot this one is 8.5% ABV...cool.
The taste is quite intense...sweeter than your typical IIPA w/ not enough malt to balance it out...but the flavor is really enjoyable. Again, the alcohol is detected, but it is not at all distracting...just warms you up nicely.
Mainly oranges and grapefruits in the taste.
The mouthfeel is a tad thin for its style...bitterness is spot on...very clean and refreshing in its finish.
I could put away a couple of these, but not much more than that in one sitting. Glad to see this one back...will pickup a few more to keep around.

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Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy deep "pink-grapefruit" in color with a thin white head. Sparse lacing. Very, very fruity and citrusy aromas noted. Slight sweetness noted on the first sip, but the hops patrol rolls up and sets up a barricade on your taste buds. All kinds of hops, too...piney, citrusy, spicy, you name it and it's in there. A powerful bitter aftertaste sets in. Slight penalty for the thinner-than-expected mouthfeel, but definitely a drinkable beer.

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Photo of far333
3.52/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Apricot color with a beige bubbly foamy head. There are large particles suspended in the beer. The aroma is honey and light hops, and masks the huge flavor lying beneath. The flavor kicks you in the teeth all at once. Big flavors of bitter hops, with a slight piney aftertaste and a bitter orange peel finish. Mouthfeel is tingly. An alcoholic flourish lingers afterward. This beer can stand up to all of the big big Imperial IPA's out there, however, like those big IIPA's, I feel that the flavor is overtaken and ruined by the strong alcohol power.

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Photo of watermelonman
3.3/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured to a somewhat dark shade of yellow and gold with a small head. The head faded to a ring and left a minor amount of lace.

The smell is deep and strong, consisting mainly of honey and pine. The taste starts with a lot of pale malt and a bit of honey. Hops take over and dominate through the finish. Pine flavor is strong. The mouthfeel is medium.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Orange-marmalade body. Long lasting antique-white head. Walls of tiny-spotted lace. Pretty nice for a beer of 8.5%

Malty and honeyish, piney/spicy/minty hops, dried-apricot aroma.

Full bodied. Effervescent, very-fine-bubbled.

The flavor starts with hints of honey and a healthy dose of rock candy. Becomes bready. Then hoppy, peppery and minty with a piney side. Alcohol & dried apricot. Bold bitterness. Alcohol. Piney hops. Very drying alcohol. Fades back to dried apricot and a thin drizzle of honey. Perhaps some mild papaya. Lingering spice, probably due to both the hops and the alcohol.

Big. Very bold. The choice of hops is interesting (it's at least a change from citrus). Enjoy at cellar temperature to bring out the richness of the malt and balance the striking hops. Perhaps overdone, perhaps not, but the somewhat harsh alcohol clearly inhibits drinkability.

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Photo of beerluvr
4.32/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very sticky and white head settling over hazy golden/light amber liquid. Nice flowery grapefruit hop nose riding over a sweet smelling malt base. Taste is a very sweet malty foundation thats soon overridden by massive hoppy bitterness. The bitterness is tasted and felt on the palate after swallowing. Very aggressive hopping! Finishes quintessentially bittersweet with slight alcohol warmth felt in the throat long after swallowing. Very good stuff!
Thanks to ppoitras (Pete) for the bottle.

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Photo of schemb
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Whammo - that's some beer ! The hops go up to the top of your palate and the sticky sweet apples coat you tongue. They hang around long after you swallow, square dancing around your mouth.
"Bow to your partner", its the square dance from the Bugs Bunny Hatfield-McCoy cartoon : "Whack 'em the head with an old pine board". The head on this bright straw colored sucker punch is cloud white and puffy and persists in whisps til the bottom of glass. Sold in dangerously priced full sized six packs, don't be surprised if YOU wake up married to your cousin !

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Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
4.49/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

By far Paper City's best offering. I've seen this one the shelves but have not been interested. Too bad for me. This beer is outstanding! What I've found in most Double IPA's is too much alcohol, too much spicy hops, and very little drinakbilty. This one, for me at least, breaks that mold.

As the name indicate, it is a Blonde Hop Monster, not you typical DIPA, but I already stated that, not much on top. In fact, it's not really glowing at all. Oh, but looks can be deceiving. Huge, I mean huge hops, not too dry either, very well balanced. This carries over on the tongue, lovely hops and tropical fruits.

This beer has serious balls. By far the most well balanced DIPA I've had. Drinkability is off the charts. Why can't all Paper City products be as good as this??!?!?

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Photo of Bjlps
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Photo of edchicma
4.47/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice cloudy medium gold with small head and light lacing. Smell is extremely nice...fruity and hoppy. Taste is excellent...extreme hops that linger, but do not beat up on you. Nice full mouthfeel that invites you to sip again. Not sure about alcohol contenet, but you certainly know it's there. Extremely drinkable as long as you don't guzzle. Best brew from Paper City that I have tried.

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Photo of Kmlund
3.5/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of akorsak
2.8/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A 12 oz bottle courtesy of jamie2dope. I had this on-tap at the Kennett brewfest but wasn't really in a reviewing state of mind then, so I'm glad for a second chance.

A: The ale is a deep orange (almost clementine orange) color. Haziness is pervasive throughout, as is some sediment. What little head emerged on pour quickly whittled away.

S: The aroma is a thick mess of hops and malts, so much of a mix that it could easily pass for a barleywine.

T: The taste matches the nose, an amalgam of hops and malts so over the top that they literally scald the tastebuds. The hops are thick and oily, resiny with citrus elements. The malts are concentrated with a dry fruity element (think slightly tart green apples or grapes).

M: The mouthfeel is a let down. The flavors, both hop and malt, are amped up far too high for their own good. I slowly feel my tongue revolting against me.

D: I remember it being so good on tap. This bottle is a muddled mess.

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Photo of fitzy84
4.12/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled bought at Liquors 44. The appearance was pretty good: thick head and good, thin lacing with an amber-like blonde appearance. The aromas were wicked strong of, you guessed it, hops. To be more descriptive, there are also other smells such as citrus aromas, mainly orange and peach that I could smell. The taste definitely delivered a good punch of hops. However, the hops are not a "monstrous" powerhouse; more like an excellent balance of earthy hop flavors. Mouthfeel was a good carbonation, allowing this drink to be crisp. Overall, a great IPA.

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Photo of CRJMellor
4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to PPoitras for the sample.
Pours a sort of golden honey color with a dull hwite foamy head.
Aroma of pine and evergreen sap with some light citrus fruit stand out. Faint hint of white pepper as it warmed a bit.
Flavors of acidic fruit and some alcohol to start but quickly shifts to a somewhat spicy hop note. Intriguing and very nice.
Mouthfeel is Not quite full-bodied but pretty think and full. Some gritty hop bittering, especially as it warms. Peppery feel is present.
Drinkability is very high. This was a very nice surprise, very solid effort and interesting spin on hop power.

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Photo of xxxxxx
4.44/5  rDev +17.5%

Photo of wedge
3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Radiant blonde color with a loose creamy head that slips down to a bubbly sheet. Thick, pungent tropical-fruity hops burst from the glass...actually its more of a complex combination of all kinds of hops on top of that. Juicy hop flavor with a solid malt sweetness that chases the hops down in the middle followed by some grain. Yeah, thats pretty different. Pretty heavy in the mouth - smooth with evidence of the 8.5%.

One word to describe this one is pungent. It gets points for creativity...very interesting choice of hops in an unrestrained DIPA.

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Photo of blackie
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

appearance: The pour produces a .5" white head that slowly recedes into the beer. The beer is slightly cloudy, and a light golden amber in color. A generous head is easily created by swirling the liquid.

smell: Sweet hops! The wonderful fresh, green, floral, piney hops smell great against the highly sweet malt. Fruity aromas are present, including pineapple, orange, and other tropical fruits. I am also picking up a "gin and juice" like smell, which is probably an indicator of the alcohol present.. Not bad at all, though it smells a little off at times, with a slightly artificial type aroma.

mouthfeel: Carbonation is a high light, and the body medium and somewhat slick on the tongue.

taste: Very strange. There is a large amount of spicy, flavorful, bitter hops present. On the other hand, there is a high level of sweetness from what I am guessing is a large amount of light malt. At least that is the only thing I know to attribute it to. High amounts of light malt taste strange to me. Not bad, just strange. There is a taste to it that reminds me of scuppernong wine. The finish is sweet and bitter. A strange take on the style, and one to try if given the chance, if only for its uniqueness.

drinkability: The bitterness is a limiting factor, but the beer is pretty drinkable. A genuinely good beer.

Obtained this bottle from ppoitras in BIF 24.

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Photo of Brent
3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A bit different from the rest of the smack-you-in-the-face-with-hops crowd. Interesting mild leafy green hops aroma, like freshly picked hops, still wet with dew. A bit shockingly tart at the first sip, but the acidity drops back sharply. I usually register hops bitterness at the back of the tongue, where I understand most of the bitterness-receptive taste buds are located, but, oddly enough, I seemed to register the hops bitterness more at the front and middle of the tongue, along with some lingering citric acidity. The beer made a feint toward going hops-overload syrupy (i.e. DFH 120), but pulled out of the dive. For me, this beer falls into the category of brews that were an interesting experience, but not one I'd go back for more of.

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Photo of goz
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Chill hazed cloudy blonde pour, good size creamy white head, slowly recedes to a good lace. Aroma is perfumy, flowery, and some citrus. Flavor has a slight malt twang at the front, and a strong citric, flowery, bitter hop ending that lingers on. Medium in body, medium carbonation, and a bit of a medicinal quality sneaks in at the end. I liked the original Hop Monster more than this one.

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Photo of Jwaks
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving 12oz bottle

Great looks with a pale golden honey body, moderate haze, ample carbonation and unflagging finger thick cap of white froth that leaves abundant lacing about the glass.

A huge punch of hop aromas soar from the glass revealing great ripe tropical fruit, pine, grapefruit and floral aromas upfront with a bit of sweet pale malt, citrus orange and resins lingering in the background.

Floral hops and piney bitters hit hard on the entry eventually mellowing to a pleasing fruit flavors toward the mid palate. A tight bitter finish ties everything together neatly with more raw bitters. Sweet pale malt, grapefruit peel and a bit of resin linger on the short fifteen second finish. Wow, this is quality stuff!

Very full and raw on the palate, this doesn't hold back any hop bitters, it revels in them showing their pure, unadultered strength. A solid pale malt backbone and generous fruit flavors round out the bitter hops providing a great full mouthfeel; meatier citrus fruit and a bit more malt would make this exceptional.

Raw hop bitters set a moderate drinking pace, but with such complex hop flavors how can you not go back for more?

This was a pleasant surprise and I'm proud to say I'm a fan of this brew. Give this great Paper City brew a try if you come across it.


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Photo of WeisGuy
4.09/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - pours a deep golden color with a one-finger white head, very cloudy with lots of suspended fine sediment, not much lacing and mild retention

s - very unique aroma, strong peach scent mixed with some generic grape drink, hints of piney hops and faintest scent of alcohol, awesome scent

t - piney, bitter hops up front, mid-palate and finish are much like the nose, very strong peach mixed with some grape flavor, not much by way of alcohol, the fruits linger on the finish for quite awhile

m - good deal of carbonation, medium-bodied, balanced on the finish, not overly sweet or dry

d - pretty drinkable b/c the alcohol is not evident and the finish is not overly dry like some DIPAs, this could be a dangerous beer at 8.5%, that said, I could see these intense, not all that complex flavors, flavors dulling the palate after awhile

I'm very surprised by this beer. It was thrown in as an extra in a trade on RB. I've never tasted or smelled such intense peach flavors in a beer...it almost smells artificial. This is a very unique DIPA all around. Well worth seeking out this one!

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Hop Monster from Paper City Brewery Co., Inc.
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 160 ratings