Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

6,308 Ratings
Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPASierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A group of hop-heads and publicans challenged our Beer Camp brewers to push the extremes of whole-cone hop brewing. The result is this: a 100 IBU, whole-cone hurricane of flavor. Simply put —Hoptimum: the biggest whole-cone IPA we have ever produced. Aggressively hopped, dry-hopped, AND torpedoed with our exclusive new hop varieties for ultra-intense flavors and aromas.

Resinous "new-school" and exclusive hop varieties carry the bold and aromatic nose. The flavor follows the aroma with layers of aggressive hoppiness, featuring notes of grapefruit rind, rose, lilac, cedar, and tropical fruit—all culminating in a dry and lasting finish.

Our Brewers selected the finest, most flavorful hops, pushed them beyond their limits and forged them into this all-new triple IPA. This reimagined Hoptimum is our hoppiest beer yet, providing a blend of tropical and citrus hop aroma that delivers a refined yet aggressive character.

Bittering hops: Simcoe
Finishing hops: Citra, Chinook, Simcoe.

Added by kaseydad on 02-07-2010

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,308 |  Reviews: 1,485
Photo of JMScowcroft
4.56/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. - Hoptimum Imperial IPA - 1pt 6 fl oz bottle

Look - Pours clear copper amber with a glorious soapy head that sticks around. Sticky lacing. Minimal carbonation.

Smell - Smooth sticky smelling sweet malts with hearty hops on top. The whole cone hops put off a unique and awesome aroma.

Taste - Snappy malt blast and hops creep in after. Full flavored candy malts and hops.

Mouthfeel - Hop assault and a sticky malt mouthfeel. The lingering taste of this brew will not be soon forgotten. Resiny fresh hop lingering is my thing.

Overall - Great brew, sticky and sweet but a hop blast as well. Would recommend!

 636 characters

Photo of take_it_sleazy
4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into Good Nature snifter. Ooh la la

A: nice orangey copper color. Lacy white head that disappears pretty quickly. Bubbles scattered haphazardly along the inside of the glass.

S: strong, characteristic, hop smell. Citrusy and sweet

T: hoppy, earthy, and honey sweet. Taste really lingers on your tounge and more hops come out at the end. It's actually a pretty unique balence of malts and hops, both strong throughout the course of enjoying this one.

M: medium-bodied, I'm thinking from the malty aspect of the beer. A bit astringent toward the end, like if you were to let a cup of tea sit out too long. Medium-low level of carbonation, pretty standard of most DIPAs.

O: would definitely recommend this one to any hophead. For $8.50 and an abv of 10.4, it's absolutely worth picking up if you can find it. Would absolutely pick this up over torpedo if they were side to side on the shelf.

 919 characters

Photo of Mersh
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Falcone
5/5  rDev +21.7%

Photo of Blaze5445
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of JamesMN
4.29/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Caramel color with a frothy cap of off-white foam and lots of visible effervescence.

Aroma: Lots of hops but slightly subdued. Pine, citrus, and a general sweetness. Some caramel malt is detectable.

Taste: Immediate hop punch to the face, this thing is East Coast in a great way. Starts with a moderately sweet hop character of sugar-crusted pine and then wham, you get all 100 IBUs at once and it is fantastic. From there it's all echoing bitterness and a great caramel malt flavor that gives the whole palate a surprising balance. Finish is dry but not drying. Aftertaste of bitter pine. The high 10.4% ABV is almost hard to believe because it is no where to be found in the flavor. Absolutely no off-flavors or anything bad about this beer.

Mouthfeel: Feels medium in body with a slight syrupy quality that is good in this case. Average carbonation that adds a little extra zing to the hop bite. Good drinkability.

Final Thoughts: I enjoyed the 2012 release of Hoptimum but my palate has developed much more since then and now I can truly cherish this year's release. Sierra Nevada proves to be a solid brewery time and time again. Although best enjoyed fresh, I think the hop blend and high ABV of Hoptimum will lend to a good life span for this style. I have three words of advice for any hop heads reading this review: seek it out. Would I drink it again? Yep.

 1,382 characters

Photo of PingBob
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Eaglefan344
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Buster
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Stignacious
4.32/5  rDev +5.1%

Photo of lic217
4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great mix of tropical, citrus, and piney hop aroma and taste. Starts with a nice malty fruity sweetness and ends with a tropical, citrusy, piney bitterness. Pure hopiness that is balanced very well by the malt. A pleasure to drink.

 234 characters

Photo of Vigilante
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Tacoboomerang
4.75/5  rDev +15.6%

Photo of fehrminator
2.75/5  rDev -33.1%

Photo of Hopmodium
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Theniz
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of bvermilion
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of KevinGordon
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Buckeye982
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of Rainier
4.93/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I'm so glad I stopped by this random liquor store by my apartment to check their beers out. I could not believe that they had the Hoptimum in stock! I'm probably gonna buy some more if they still have some for sale. It's one of the best Imperial IPAs I have ever had. I think Pliny is still at the top, then Sucks, then Hoptimum, then Enjoy By(4.01.2013). That's how good this beer is! My bottle is probably fresh too!

The taste had a very strong hop bitterness, which I love so much! I think they used more hops on this one than a lot of beers out there(minus the triple IPAs). It's a very pleasant hop taste.

It was kindy pricey though. I paid like $11 for a four pack. Oh well, it's so worth it!
Would definitely buy again.

 728 characters

Photo of MRAnderson
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of LSx
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Hopinista
4.75/5  rDev +15.6%

Photo of alex_hart
4.62/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: a hazy orange with a white half finger head that dissipates quickly. a small bit of visible carbonation.

smell: first smell, surprisingly, was quite sweet. I was expecting an explosion of hops in my nose, but it was more closely related to a sweet citrus followed by some pine notes. very pleasant.

taste: Oh my gosh! Nothing at ALL what I expected, and in the best way possible! This is flat out delicious! The sweetness of honey comes through and it is balanced perfectly by the hop note. A small bit of citrus comes through at the end.

Moutfeel: Good carbonation on the tongue and the right amount of residue in the mouth after the swallow. Once again, pleasant.

Overall: I really wasn't sure what to expect from this 2013, but it blew me away. By far my favorite DIPA. It is a flat out work of art.

 818 characters

Photo of Rope
4.42/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2012 Hoptimum

A hazy orange, quickly dissipating white head.

Sweet citrus upfront, with a the slightest bit of caramel.

The sweetness is bright, but not sensing a lot of citrus like the nose. The bitter hops really save it from being too sweet. The most pleasant note is a subtle honey that lingers to the end.

My ideal. Clean sharp carbonation, it refreshes, leaves a slight aftertaste.

Amongst Imperial IPA beers, this one is up their for the bitterness I find many others to lack.

 534 characters

Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.11 out of 5 based on 6,308 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

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