Hoppus Maximus | Thirsty Dog Brewing Company

240 Reviews
Read the review
Hoppus MaximusHoppus Maximus

Brewed by:
Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
Ohio, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by AtLagerHeads on 04-24-2003

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 240 | Ratings: 421
Photo of hustlesworth
4.56/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

the local thirsty dog brewpub burned down a few years ago and in is place we have...chick-fil-a. lame.

A- pours a slightly hazy honey orange amber with rising bubbles. head is off white a little yellowish and extremely buildable. it rose an inch above the rim of the glass giving me 2in of rocky cloudy foam that formed peaks and valleys finally settling to 1/4in disk leaving sheets of lace on the glass.

S- mild tropical fruit (yeast?) piney citrus hops, sweet buttery caramel malt overtaken by woody earthy pine cones with mocha and flowers in the back of my sinus. and a slight wet dog smell.

T- candied grapefruit and bittersweet orange peel. softer woodsy pine mingles with a nicely balanced pale raw barley taste that softens into a beefy barley soup with a burst of piney citrus hops at the end that fade fast leaving a delicate cocoa pine aftertaste with some mineral water.

MF- slick and juicy like a cold glass of orange or pineapple juice. medium bodied with immaculate carbonation fading resinous mouthfeel and very refreshing.

D- aggressive hops, lots of flavor, low ABV, unoffensive aftertaste. i darnk the whole 6-er.

 1,140 characters

Photo of Jottpe
4.53/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer is deceptively good. I had never heard of any good beers that come from Dayton, Ohio (where this is apparently brewed). As I am sure you can tell from the name, this beer is heavy on the hops, and as such it is certainly not for someone used to a lighter more American beer.
That said the hops is not overwhelming either. The packaging makes you think this is a beer suited to a fratboy but, and I can not emphasize this enough, it is a truly good brew. The hops is certainly strong but not overwhelming, and unlike a lot of other American beers that go strong on the hops, this goes down and finishes quite nicely: a pleasant taste going down, and even better aftertaste makes it a beer you can really savor. You could easily drink 3 of these and enjoy every last sip. I didn't drink it with any food, but I imagine you could pair it with the same foods any hopsy beer would go well with. It pours with a very small head, but it bubbles well after pouring. Pours an attractive but very cloudy amber.

This is my first review, and I wrote it simply because this beer deserves more attention. If you are ever in the Ohio area I would seriously recommend finding it.

 1,174 characters

Photo of Hoptometrist
4.45/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a mug

A- Pours a caramel brown color with a two finger fluffy head that leaves spotty lacing.

S- Fantastic aroma full of pine, citrus hops, rye, caramel, and bread

T- Rye, caramel, pine and citrus hops, and some breadiness. Overall the taste is pretty bitter but has a strong malt backbone

M- Smooth with some pirckly carbonation

O- This is a great sessionable beer for hopheads. This one and Stone Levitation Ale are my go to beers for a nice hop fix with a lower ABV. This site lists the ABV as 5%, but the beer is listed as 5.9% on the bottles. Even at 5.9%, while not super low, it is still lower than any IPA I have recently. Bitter, sweet, and flavorful.

 693 characters

Photo of argock
4.45/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a clear glass mug. No freshness date. Purchased as 6-pack at World Market (Charlottesville, VA) for $10.99.

A: Orange amber with 1-2 finger beige, sticky head with decent retention and lace sheets the glass.

S: Lush for an amber or an APA with grapefruit, orange, apricot, and mild pine in the hops department with plenty of toasted caramel and pale malts.

T: Full-flavored brew which fits into the APA category better, but does have that toasted caramel character that fits an amber. Caramel maltiness is lightly toasted and less pale than the nose suggests, but it is window dressing for the hoppiness which is substantial and includes orange, grapefruit, pine, and floral characteristics. It is a wonderfully multi-flavored brew with plenty to satisfy the hopshead in everyone.

M: Medium-to-full body with carbonation that helps the brew flow right over the tongue and gives it a nice creaminess that fits the style well. Aftertaste is toasted caramel and grapefruit hops.

D: Unbelievable that this beer is only 5% ABV: it packs a huge flavor in that small package, with a complex hoppiness that is very satisfying.

 1,160 characters

Photo of GoldenChild
4.44/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hoppus Maximus pours a clear rusty amber body with plenty of carbonation bubbles creating an off white head that leaves good lacing.

Aromas are malty, caramelly, tinged with herbal and citrus hop character.

Quite malty in the flavor up front with a good hop backing to balance things out and edge out the malt in the finish.

A lighter mouthfeel than many reds, but there is just enough there. It may be a bit too carbonated though.

doesnt taste like a amber ale taste more like a IPA to me but i love it and will be buying more!


 578 characters

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.43/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

It's been a few years since I had this one, I think I dig the name as much as the beer.

Appearance - orange tinted amber with an eggshell-colored head. A cool peppering of lace down the far side of the glass.

Aroma - grapefruit rind and orange. Obviously very citrusy but some caramel is in there, too.

Taste - sweet caramel and biscuit underpin the grapefruit and piny hops. Good flavor on both sides of this beer, and great balance. Some orange and biscuit on the swallow, grapefruit rind on the aftertaste. Finishes bitter and dry.

Mouthfeel - smooth, decent crispness, solid body.

Drinkability - a top amber from Thirsty Dog. Cheers to me for getting a sixer!!

 669 characters

Photo of wagenvolks
4.43/5  rDev +21%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Twelve oz. bottle pours a golden orange, cloudily unfiltered-looking brew below a minimal amount of head, light to no lacing along the edges of the pint glass. The aroma is very sweet with a (expectedly) hoppy fragrance. Hints of melon, cantalope or honeydew, as well.

The taste is well balanced with hops and malt notes making for a light and very, very smooth mouthfeel. Lightly carbonated, this beer finishes strong and smooth, with hops at the back of the palate. Quite the thirst-quenching beer, would go great with a meal.

 532 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.42/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle contract brewed by Frederick in Maryland; fresh from the brewery.

Thirsty Dog's Hoppus Maximus pours a hazy orange-amber beneath a full head of creamy white foam that holds well and leaves some very nice rings of lace about the glass.

The nose is softly piney like a cool, shaded forest floor in summer. There are light notes of citrus as well, and it's quite bright and refreshing!

In the mouth it's medium bodied and lightly crisp with more of a zest than a bristle.

The flavor is also light and refreshing, striking a nice balance between its airy, pine and citrus (sweet grapefruit, lemon) hop flavors, and it's just lightly sweet caramel-tinged malt. The bitterness is kept in check and nicely balanced against the malt (listed at an appropriate 43 IBU's); and it finishes with a dollop of caramelish malt and a splash of citrus that erode to leave some mild pine and bitterness behind.

The name had me fooled, and without looking at the label (which states it's and American-style Amber Ale... I'd call it an APA...) I thought I'd be tasting something along the lines of a double IPA. But it's not; and it's surprisingly refreshing and easy to drink. Well done!

 1,197 characters

Photo of goblue3509
4.39/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a coppery color with a thin head which recedes to nothing and gives way to decent lacing. The aroma is of floral hops and citrus hops with some sweet malt. The smell is very inviting kinda like a flower shop. The taste is of a sweet malt backbone and a nice floral hop. The taste doesn't have a hop bite, but a very nice smooth hop character. The mouthfeel is slightly carbonated. Overall this is a very drinkable beer, this beer has a great aroma and great flavor, you could easily make this a session beer.

 514 characters

Photo of Lauthaha
4.39/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer mug.

Appearance: A pure amber color with a thin (yet foamy) head. Head is off-white with a few bigger bubbles dotting the surface of mostly non-active head. No lacing on the edges of the glass.

Smell: A good mix of hops. Smells like it could even be an IPA. Mostly floral with just a slight edge of bitterness in there. A caramel nose warms up the scent nicely. Pretty good!

Taste: The bitter hops hit first, then tangle pleasantly with the floral hops. Once the carbonation recedes a touch, the malty character is more easily discerned. Mid-swig, a pleasant sweetness overtakes the flavor, and upon completion of said swig, the hops once again regain control. Goes down like an IPA, heavy on the hops, and a pleasant bitter aftertaste. Bought this beer based on the name...and it did not disappoint.

Mouthfeel: Light at first; the carbonation creates a "heaviness facade" which gives you time to appreciate the character of the beer, then recedes and rinses down fairly smoothly.

Drinkability: I love this one! Would definitely recommend it for those who eat their food directly off the grill. Steak, brats, BBQ chicken; these would all go great with Hoppus Maximus.

A surprisingly good beer. Absolutely worth a taste, especially if you're big on IPAs. Though I'm not sure it's a great example of a "American Amber/Red Ale" as it is described on the site.

 1,404 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.38/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bold kumquat orange with a fine yeasty haze. The upper half of the pint glass is filled with a large dollop of melted orange creamsicle that sets off the color of the beer beautifully. The foam is richly creamy and is sticky enough to festoon the glass with thick sheets of BB-shot lace. A wonderfully 'dirty' IPA look.

I don't know about Hoppus Maximus, but the citric fruity nose easily earns the moniker Hoppus Moderatus. It's primarily orange zesty with a little grapefruit as well. At roughly half that strength is a caramel maltiness that doesn't smell like it'll intrude on the palate. I think I'm gonna like this one.

Maximus tastes like a much bigger beer to me than a 5% APA. In fact, I'd have called it an IPA if blinded. Why the brewery insists on calling it an amber ale is beyond me. While the nose was no slouch in the hop department, the flavor is more hoppy yet. In fact, it's easily hoppier than many so-called IPAs. Yes, I'll concede the point; Hoppus Maximus is a valid name after all.

I'm betting that the malt backbone is more pale than caramel because there's even less flavor contribution than the nose suggested there would be. Speaking of malt, there's enough on hand to easily support the generous lupulin load. We wouldn't want to actually balance the hops, now would we? (the correct answer is 'no').

Bittersweet orange still leads the way with a welcome contribution from white grapefruit pith and from apricot. A minor spruciness add depth. The hop bill almost certainly includes one or more of the 4-Cs. Whatever has been used is more than fine by me. It's easy to be cynical about GABF medals, but this beer deserves anything that it has ever been awarded.

The body/mouthfeel is on the full side of medium and contains just enough bubbles to add volume. I'd even go so far as to call it lush. By what sort of alchemy are these guys able to create a beer that tastes and feels so big... at only 5%? Simply amazing.

Hoppus Maximus is damn good beer. For some inexplicable reason, I doubted its bona fides prior to popping the cap. Color me impressed though. I've been searching for a single for several years now and finally found one. Looks like I should have sprung for a sixer all those times that I had the chance. I won't make the same mistake again.

 2,304 characters

Photo of drmary
4.35/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Very impressive in this way: low alcohol content (I'm a bit alcohol sensitive and some of the really high ABV beers just aren't worth the headache) but very well rounded and full bodied. Not quite sure how they pulled it off, but that's why I gave this such a high drinkability rating. Nice caramelly notes in the nose.

 319 characters

Photo of Brad007
4.35/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this from a friend who bought it in Maine.

Pours an amber color with a one-finger head into my pint glass. Looks like a typical amber ale.

Aroma is very hoppy with some sweet malt showing through. Appealing.

Taste is very hoppy with a faint hint of malt. Chewy and again, hoppy. The hops dominate upfront.

Mouthfeel is full of nice hop bitterness and malt chewiness. Very enjoyable.

Very nice for a hoppy red ale. It does well with the hops but has a lot of flavor. At 5%, great session beer!

 501 characters

Photo of maek228
4.35/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: An orange/amber. Nice head with cling.

Smell: fresh fresh hops and some sweet fruits linger in there as well

Taste: Refreshing! crisp and hoppy with some subtle sweet grain tastes.

Mouthfeel: smooth and crisp

drinkability: DAMN this goes down.

 268 characters

Photo of ericj551
4.31/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hoppus Maximus pours a cloudy orange with small chunky particulate suspended. The aroma is sweet caramel and tons of orangey citrus hops. Sweet malt hits the tongue first, followd by the fruity, cirtusy hops. More orange than anything else, my guess is a lot of Amarillo backed up by some other American "C" hops. The light fruity sweetness really complements and balances the hops, and the bitter finish is barely noticeable. Overall it's pretty light for an Amber Ale, but a solid beer none the less.

 502 characters

Photo of TheHoppiest
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at the Winking Lizard in Independence. The pour was cold and without much head into a pint glass. Bar maids pulling these kinds of handles need to learn that its not a Miller Lite where I'm looking for every drop of cheap crap beer. I'll note it in my beerfly review of them.

After letting it warm a bit, I took a smell. There was a faint hop aroma with some mild, sweet malt.

Taste was excellent, piney hops like a Christmas tree with plenty of astringency and a nice bitter aftertaste drying out the tongue. Reminds me of Lagunitas' Maximus IPA.

Decent mouthfeel, smooth yet dry.

Quite drinkable, if this hadn't been a quick beer after work, I would definitely have ordered another. Highly recommend this brew out of Akron.

UPDATE: had another from a 12 oz bottle on 7/20/11. Poured a beautiful copper color, with a 1" creamy, ivory head. Did not serve it too cold like WL did; cruised it in at about 45 degrees or so from the beer fridge in the basement.

Unlike the one on tap, this warmer beer had a great hop nose, with a definite backbone of caramel malt. Taste is still that nice, hoppy, piney taste I remember. The sweet caramel malt is more pronounced than it was on tap - perhaps again a function of the beer being warmer than it was at WL. Mouthfeel is once, a medium bodied beer that leaves the tongue dry enough to want more beer.

I agree with one of the reviewers below that even though it is a 5.9%er, it is a tasty, sessionable brew. Whether on tap or in the bottle, grab this brew from Thirsty Dog!

 1,534 characters

Photo of beerceller99
4.3/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber color with a frothy white head.
Nice medium strong piney hop smell with a subtle grainy aroma.
Medium bodied and lightly carbonated.
Flavor is a perfect balance of herbal hops and mildly sweet caramel malts. Has a lightly bitter finish.
A very good, and easy drinking session beer here.

 306 characters

Photo of MarkSCCOT
4.27/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle obtained at State Line Liquors into a pint glass.

A. Pours a clear amber brew with a 1/2 inch off white head that leaves decent lacing.

S. Piney herbal hops with a malt backbone.

T. Much as it smells, except some flowery hops are evident in the finish.

M. This beer tastes much bigger than 5.00%!! Very astringent yet clean finish.

D. Very drinkable!!! Tastes more like an IPA but the lower abv lets you drink a few more.

 456 characters

Photo of Viggo
4.27/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to BlackAngus for sending me this brew for BC2!

Pours a cloudy amber, thin white head forms, nice and thick, lots of lace, settles to a thick ring, good retention. Smell is great, floral and citrus, pine, caramel and honey malts, nice balanced, very fresh aroma. Taste is similar, a whole ton of caramel and floral hops, orangy citrus, perfect balance, very clean bitterness, very assertive in the best way. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, super smooth and refreshing. Most excellent amber, right hops and right malt. Thanks Josh!

 571 characters

Photo of Overlord
4.27/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Umm...how is this an amber ale? It may be amber/orange in color, but tastewise it leans towards an IPA, or even a low alcohol barleywine (if such an animal existed).

Smells deliciously sweet and malty, with a tinge of hops. I'm licking this so far! Pours with a minimal white thin crust, no real head. Not much carbonation, and a nice, appropriately sharp mouthfeel.

Taste is more tropical than expected, with caramel malt overlayed with sweet white grapefruit, orange, and sweet citrus.

Underrated. I'd buy all the time if available here.

Thanks Sprinkle!

 563 characters

Photo of leantom
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

I'm expecting a hoppy amber ale. Here goes:

A: Very lovely, actually. A light reddish-brown that allows a good amount of light to penetrate the beer. Very well carbonated and pours a huge head with a ton of lacing. The beer was bursting forth upon opening the bottle. 4.5/5.0

S: Grassy hops that give way to a light malt backbone. For an amber ale, this one is pretty hoppy. I was expecting a stronger malt presence, but it's still good. 3.75/5.00

T: Beer is far maltier than the nose indicates. Grassy hops consisting of lemon and mild grapefruit give way to a strong malt backbone, one comprised of amber and caramel malts. Very toasty and sweet. Overall very balanced between the malt and hops. 4/5

M: Can't complain. Very well carbonated and thick. 4.5/5.0

O: I enjoyed this beer a lot. Great taste that's complimented by a great balance of American hops and lightly-kilned malt.

 909 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber color with a rocky head that deposits strands of lace on the pint glass

Smell: Rich caramel malt backbone supports the aromas of piney hops

Taste: Starts out laying a great malty base that is joined, mid-palate, by an aggressively piney aspect; after the swallow, both flavors pick up and blend well, although there is a bit of a fade at the end

Mouthfeel: Medium to thick bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Really nice effort; you don't often see amber ales this compelling

 523 characters

4.21/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This was very much not an amber/red ale, strictly according to color. This was a pale yellowish orange, like an IPA. Great malt sweetness and a wonderful hop profile make up for the hue tho. Great beer. More of an IPA than red ale.

 231 characters

Photo of nosurrender23
4.2/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Grade from the group = A-.

"Good for an ale, but name is misleading - I like it."

First, the beer pours with slight head and is cloudy with a dark "teaish" color.

After the beer is poured, it exhibited a slight boozy smell like liquor with an earthy spicy flavor that lingered with it.

In the mouth, the beer had a smooth, lightly carbonated, slightly bitter, complex, and yummy taste to it that was very kind for it's name.

As far as drinking is concerned, the beer went down very smooth and easy to drink.

Finally, the beer had a complex taste that consisted of bitter hops with a nutty slightly fruity taste that was sugary and bitter. Very fresh - not quite an IPA but stronger than a typical ale, which lives up to the equation in which better ingredients = better beer. A good variation of the amber ale style!

 828 characters

Photo of oberon
4.19/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a light amber color with a thinner 1/2 finger white head that didnt stick around to long,very nice balance aromas leaning towards the piney hop with a touch of citrus over top of caramal malt and biscuit.Flavors start out lightly sweet but soon becomes hit with a nice dose of piney,citrusy somewhat resiny hop thru into a lingering finish.Alot of flavor with a lower alc% makes for a real quaffer,I really enjoyed this beer I have to say.

 446 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Hoppus Maximus from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
3.66 out of 5 based on 421 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.