Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

6,274 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: 6,274 |  Reviews: 1,470
Photo of TempeBeerMan
4.58/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a nonic pint.

A – Deep amber hue with a two-finger off white head with great retention. Sticky lacing.

S – Dank, resinous hops. Somehow grassy and earthy at the same time. Strong overall aroma. Smells complex and intriguing.

T – OMG. Hops upon hops. Dank weed-like hops. Earthy hops. Piney hops. Floral hops. Grassy hops. Fruity hops. How many different hop tastes can be crammed into one beer? All brought into wonderful balance by a big butterscotch-like malt base with a hint of toffee. As many hops as there is going around here, the malt steps up and carries it’s own weight. Super lush, rich, and swirlingly complex. Finishes with expected bitterness. ABV mostly hidden but peeks out just a little in the aftertaste.

M – Suitably big and chewy. You can definitely feel the “weight” of this beer on the tongue. Nicely carbonated.

O – Outstanding. Unique. Brash to the point of “extreme”. It’s a lot to handle but worth the challenge. Not a beer I’d want more than one or maybe two at a sitting; just to big and too much flavor on the taste buds. But truly an amazing product from SN. A MUST for hop heads!

 1,169 characters

Photo of TubaManJack
3.37/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tulip Glass

Deep golden copper hue with a deep lasting pillowy white head. There is a deep hop oilly smell. This is a bit of sweetness & alcohol and no malt. The taste is very reminiscent of the nose. There isn't too much of the citrus or malt in the taste. This is a really powerful beer that struggles to really balance the alcohol and the oily hops. Its not my favorite but would do well for the hop heads that don't want a big citrus brew.

 444 characters

Photo of DrHoptagon
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of jsulko
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a glass

Pours a mostly clear golden orange color with a thick white head that tends to linger.

Smell is slightly sweet with an oily piney hop smell.

Taste is very heavy piney hop forward with a hard hop bite on the finish. Alcohol also heavy in the finish.

A quite hop powerful beer with a big alcohol taste. Not my favorite DIPA as I tend towards the citrus end of the hop spectrum.

 408 characters

Photo of parris
4.38/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a - golden, mild carbonation

s - floral, then pine

t - hop explosion, very tasty, grassy, grapefruit, not so much hop/malt balance, but the malt does it's job of keepign enough balance to taste delish

m - oily then papery, full bodied

o - This is a great beer, the hops have more of an aggressive role than some of the other "world-class" rated IIPAs, but it's a welcome change.

 383 characters

Photo of RoryOMoore
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of CalbeDacks
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

Photo of JenkumJesus
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of rhhjr
4.75/5  rDev +15.6%

Photo of JPWestCoastIPA
5/5  rDev +21.7%

Photo of Xauday
1/5  rDev -75.7%

Photo of jmdrpi
4.07/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle

clear dark golden color with copper highlights, 1/4" off-white head. massive hoppy resin aroma. piney, a touch of citrus.

taste is hop dominant, but enough of a malt presence to back it up. lingering aftertaste. medium body, higher carbonation. a bit oily feeling.

overall - a good DIPA at a very reasonable price compared to most.

 348 characters

Photo of JohnNasso
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of BarrytheBear
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a tulip. The appears to be some type of numbering system on the bottle, but I'll be damned if I know what it means.

A hazed orange lies below a creamy white head.

Citrus and oodles of minty hops. Grassy peppermint and spearmint dominate the nose.

Big wallop of minty and spiciness. Hp rides roughshod over the palate...a big sensation of toothpaste. Boozy alcohol bite on the finish lingers long after the sip. Malt jumps in as a parachute to soften some the blow. This shit could be used as mouthwash. It's a bit loose and slightly unfocused, but it's a good dose of hops delivered en masse.

Body is medium, really resinous, and oily.

Overall, I really don't enjoy Sierra Nevada all that much. Their house yeast turn me off and their hop profiles don't do much for me. But this may be one of my favorite offerings from them. It served to quell my hop fix for the evening and I can dig that.

 917 characters

Photo of mocktm
3.63/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle from Bellport Beer, thanks Dave! Dig the artwork.

Golden orange color, creamy white head with nice retention and lacing.

Smells sweet, yet quite pine forward with a big whiff of booze.

Alcohol is a little overpowering, taking away from the "whole cone hop" expereince the front of the bottle boasts. Still, this manages a biting bitterness and a subtle honey sweet finish. Citrusy throughout, but also has that onion/garlic presence I hate in IPAs...Bummer

Rather full in body with a desert dry finish. This is a one and done I think; I'll switch to a more sessionable IPA after I finish this up.

With all the hype, I can't help but be a little disappointed. I'm all about double IPAs, but they overdid the booze on this one a bit. Not sure if I'd invest in another bottle or not.

 798 characters

Photo of jakea
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of DCon
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of Murrhey
3.62/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Reviewed live.

A- Thick four finger cream colored head. Long retention, creamy and tiny-bubbled head. Light orange in color, nice clarity and carbonation.

S- Pine scented hops, full bodied and well balanced for a hop-bomb type beer. Grapefruit, honey, and other sweet scents. Nice smelling beer and not too overpowering. Near perfect.

T- Still piney hops, but predictably they become a lot more potent in the taste. Very strong, bitter-earthy notes, clear alcohol taste, like a young bourbon or something.

M- Surprisingly sort of a sickly thin feel. Extremely dry finish. Worst part of the beer in my opinion.

O- Great smell, above average taste and fairly awful feel. Glad I got to try it, but it was better on-tap.

 768 characters

Photo of apocalypsezombie
2.75/5  rDev -33.1%

Photo of Torabayama
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of DeezGunz14
4/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of TheBirdSanc
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%

Photo of bigfnjoe
4.01/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Dogfish snifter

A- pours a dark orange with a two finger offwhite head. The orange is almost perfectly transparent. Man, looks phenomenal.

S- very perfumey hop aroma...flowery almost

T- slight bit of sweetness in the beginning, with a touch of bitterness at the end. Citrus mixed throughout. Slight alcohol burn.

M- pretty thick body...almost syrupy. Man, there's a lot here

O- pretty good DIPA from Sierra Nevada. Doesn't seem very balanced, though

 483 characters

Photo of BeerKangaroo
3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In my chalice:

A: golden brown colored boy yielded a small white one finger head that lasted for a good fifteen seconds. Gentle flowing carbonation rose at a moderate pace. No lacing was left.

S: hops up front with a fruity yet malty background, however all were pretty powerful in the smell.

T: powerful combination of the hops, fruits and malts. There was the slight alcohol taste that came out.

M: medium with a decent level of carbonation. A slight creamy feel came out as the beer warmed.

O: this was a pretty good brew that I would happily welcome again despite the alcohol taste that came out a bit too strong.

 622 characters

Photo of TubbyDullard
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%

Sierra Nevada Hoptimum Imperial IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.11 out of 5 based on 6,274 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.