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Hercules Double IPA | Great Divide Brewing Company

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1,573 Reviews
Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
HERCULES DOUBLE IPA is not for the faint of heart. It is, however, fit for the gods. HERCULES delivers a huge amount of hops from start to finish. Its hefty backbone of nutty, malty sweetness balances its aggressive hop profile. 85 IBUs.

Added by filabrazilia on 04-11-2004

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Reviews: 1,573 | Ratings: 4,108
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.52/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Even carefullly poured from a long-standing and refrigerated bottle, Great Divide's Hercules Double IPA delivers a somewhat hazy orange-amber body with a bit of a light crimson cast. Its frothy off-white head drops steadily to become quite creamy; and then slowly fades to a standard collar and whispy surface covering. It leaves thin splashes of lace about the glass, however, which are quite nice. Bright, floral, grassy, lightly piney, and citrusy hops appear in the nose alongside some yeasty fruitiness and sweetish, honey-drizzled malt. The mouthfeel is quite nice: full and dextrinous with a very-fine bubbled, median carbonation as ballast - leaving a gently bubbly caress on the tongue before becoming more creamy and smooth. More sweetish, bready (and even dough-like), and honeyish malt appears in the flavor, dripping with floral hoppy flavors; and tempered by a slap of alcohol and a punch of bitterness that allows it to dry almost immediately in the finish! Hops, however, linger on the palate - floral, piney and citrusy; dancing and swirling until what residual malt is left fades and only bitterness remains. It's a solid duoble IPA to say the least! And very well done! The hops are blended just enough that they don't stray too far towards any particular character (fruity, citrusy, leafy, or grassy for example); and they balance perfectly with the malt that follows the same profile (ie. not too grainy, sweet, honey-ish, etc.). NICE!

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Photo of mactrail
2.98/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark coppery amber in the Leffe tulip. Moderately sudsy with pleasing carbonation in the mouth. It's hard to get a read on the smell, which is more medicinal than beery. Hugely hopped, and leaves a woody, astringent taste on the tongue. Kind of a candy flavor, a Sugar Daddy dipped in quinine. That sweet and bitter combo is not too pleasing after a few sips. This one will have to go into stud service, goosing the hops on some less well-endowed ales.

This is my least favorite offering from this brewery, and I'm a big Great Divide fan. My favorite Colorado brewery, in fact. Label says bottled on Oct. 18, 2011.

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

Perfectly pellucid, resplendent, polished, hearty orangish copper. The tangerine-tinted ecru cap is large and creamythick with a bubblicious, magma-like surface. Thick sheets of lace are beginning to be laid down and display the same honeycomb-like pattern as the upper surface of the head. I like my IPAs/DIPAs to look dirty (that is, unfiltered), but crystal clear isn't so bad when it's topped by a world class crown like this one is.

There's a left jab-right cross combination of hoppiness in the nose that stops just short of a knockout blow. Classic DIPA aroma: melted caramel-toffee candy mixed with a huge citrus zestiness. If you want subtle, you've come to the wrong place. I'd love to sit and smell for a spell, but I'm too eager to take a drink.

Hercules is a gentle giant. It's hard to fathom how a beer packed with this much malt, this many hops and a 9.1% ABV can be so smooth and so easy to drink. The malt backbone is massive and tastes like sticky toffee pudding to which candied pine needles and sugar syrup soaked grapefruit, kumquat and lemon chunks have been added. It's a little too balanced (I like hops to outdistance malt by a wide margin), but it's oh so delicious.

The hops are asserting themselves more and more with warming, so hopheads will be rewarded for their patience (or for starting the bottle out at closer to 60 degrees than 50). The bitterness is likely to kill the uninitiated, but I can't contain my glee as my tongue begins its death throes. As long as the beer continues to send those flavor signals to my brain, all will be well.

The finish is incredibly long, increasingly bitter and increasingly piney. I love the mouthfeel. It's unapologetically full, slick and heavily silky. An appropriately low amount of carbonation only contributes to the frightening ease of consumability. The considerable amount of alcohol, while not completely masked, isn't even close to bothersome.

Hercules Double IPA is another great beer from Great Divide (who have a habit of brewing great beer). It's the quintessential balanced DIPA in that it respects its malt side as much as its hop side. Even though my preference runs to the insanely hop-dominant, this one is a keeper and is a beer that I'll buy in quantity whenever the opportunity presents itself. Thanks to prAna for the bombers.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a wonderfully clear orange-amber color with a pillowy, off-white head.

Smell: What a winning aroma! A fresh assortment of juicy citrus fruits served with bread dough and orange blossom honey.

Taste: Mild, smooth butterscotch sweetness provides a solid malt foundation that tapers off into a full salvo of orangy hop flavors that are a touch peppery. Renewed accents of toasted caramel lead into a dry, piney finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and quite creamy with a soft carbonation.

Drinkability: Plenty of intense hop flavors and bitterness offset by a rich, malty sweetness. That settles it, Great Divide's Hercules is a very well made Double IPA.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.65/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: Pours to a hazy amber color with a decent, off-white head and a good amount of lacing.

S: Citrus sweetness and malt hits you first, then some hops (I was expecting a stronger hops aroma.) with a hint of the alcohol. I'm also detecting some honey & vanilla.

T: The hops that I had been expecting in the smell are definitely in the taste. As the initial burst of hops fades, you get the sweetness. When the sweetness fades, the hops bitterness comes back for the after-taste, which I was expecting. A complex combo of tastes, but it doesn't seem as balanced as most to me.

M: Crisp with a medium-to-heavy body. Finishes dry for the most part, but leaves a bit of an oily residue, which is a bit different from and not as sticky as the syrupy feel that you can get from some sweeter beers.

D: It's not very filling, so it's something you can go with, especially since there isn't much hint of the alcohol other than a small amount in the smell. However, if I'm going to drink a lot of something, personally I'd rather drink something else, even within the style. I can appreciate the complexity. I can appreciate the hoppiness although this wasn't one of my favorite 2IPA’s.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.83/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: bottle from Pinocchio's beer garden, Media, PA

Poured a hazy orange-brown with a healthy white head. Fruits and citrus hops in the nose. Very tasty, with citrus and piney hops, smooth malts in the background...surprisingly fruity. Some bitterness in the aftertaste. Medium bodied, with a bit of film in the mouth from the fruitiness and alcohol, but overall nice and drinkable.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poors a brilliant orange amber with a thick frothy head that is slow to sink. Lacing lasted pretty much to the end, very nice looking indeed! Smell was hops, and cirus, very fruity smell and very pleasant. Seems to have gotten better as time went on. Now for the taste....Wow...Very nice, smooth going down and just pops. Citrus and a tiny bit of alcohol in there.End with a fantastic piney taste. Just great great beer. This was a wonderful brew and I will be getting as soon as I can. Really nothing bad to say about this at all.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

thanks to froggyfrog for sharing this fresh keg on his bday, I enjoyed mixing this w/ his peach wheat ale, but pure drinking was excellent. I poured this cold into my weeping radish mug.

A -A clear copper w/ amber highlights and a full two inches of light tan foam, starts w/ a full cap and the retention is very good. The clarity suffers slightly from the oily hop goodness contained in the bruiser

S - Very floral w/ citrus just pouring out of the glass. A very hoppy fragrant aroma w/ a touch of pine, not much booziness like you might expect from a beer w/ 9.10% abv

M- Very intensely hop resinous feel w/ a touch of mild yet moderately full carbonation. The hops have s spicy feel while the ale is subtly sweet in the finish.

T - A very rich and flavorful IIPA, intensely hop flavored, yet not overly bitter, more juicy w/ citrusy amarillo and other West coast hop flavor. The taste is mild for the high Abv and not as intensely bitter as some Imperial IPA's I have had. The malt is slightly creamy but supports the hops and the sweetness is almost balancing. A good dose of vegetal flavors from the intense hopping is pleasant to my taste. The taste is fresh green and less bitter than the bottled version. This is very decent flavor wise and has a significantly higher amount of hop flavor than Titan, but doesn't come off like a barleywine like some IIPa's.

D - I loved this IIPA on tap it was great to try it again. Great drinkability from Great Divide an extreme Ipa that really isn't harsh w/ bitterness or alcohol even at 9.1% it is pretty well balanced for an Imperial Ipa and gives plenty of fresh tasty hops for those who expect it. Slgithly boozy, but there really isn't any one flavor taking the spotlight this has nice complexity and balance for the style.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.11/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Eureka!Burger Claremont

A: The pour is a clear amber color with a creamy off-white head.

S: Definitely on the sweet side for an IPA with lots of caramel and toffee aromas. There's a mild citrus hop aroma along with a fair amount of pineapple. Some other sweet fruits also make an appearance.

T: Like the aroma, the flavor is also quite sweet. Plenty of brown sugar, caramel, and toffee are prsent. There is a fairly mild hop character and very little bitterness. Minimal citrus and fruit flavors wth a bit of grass and alcohol.

M: The body is medium to full with medium carbonation.

O: Overly sweet and not all that hoppy. That's not a combination I look for in an IPA.

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Photo of russpowell
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured amber to orange with a white head, very good lacing & head retention

Smell: Nice earthy hops, malt and some alcohol

Taste: Hop smack, alcohol, pineyness. Extreme pineyness & dryness on the finish.

MF: Chewy but not overwhelming. More carbonation please

Good drinkabilty, but a lot of hopiness to fight through. Another classic from GD!!! Even better on tap...

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Photo of Jason
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber @ Sunset Grill, thanks liefman for sharing this with me.

Deep copper, slightly hazed with a lace that would not stop leaving trails down the glass.

Smelled of resiny hops, piney and citric yet very clean. Hints of malt and subtle alcohol under the hops. Almost silky smooth with a strong medium body, big punch of clean bitter hop ... clean hop oil permeates citric and pine. Faint alcohol on the palate, its very hidden ... deceiving.

Wow, damn straight this Double IPA came at me like a bat out of hell. I am very impress by this brew.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.07/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a hazy golden orange in color. The beer has an eighth finger tall soapy beige head that reduces to an extremely thin film with a slightly thicker patch and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate lacing is observed.

S: The aroma starts with some caramel malt sweetness which is followed by the smell of the hops - grapefruit/citrus dominates with lighter notes of pine/resin and floral hops.

T: Upfront this beer has a definite malt sweetness with light notes of caramel and some nuttiness. After that, the flavors are all hops - aggressive grapefruit/citrus with lighter amounts of pine/resin.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly sticky.

O: Easier to drink than I expected with the higher ABV but still an amazingly good beer and one for sipping. Alcohol is well hidden and there is a nice complexity to the flavors and aromas. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of mdaschaf
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 5/2/11.

A: Pours a slightly hazy orange/ruby color with a one finger off-white head. Moderate retention with spotty lacing.

S: Nice citrus aroma, hoppy, with lighter fruits like apricot and some pineapple. There is a slightly grainy aroma, as well a light nutty smell and a bit of caramel.

T: A burst of hops upfront and on the sweet side. Not as in you face hoppy as previous versions I have had. I remember it being a bit hoppier, and this bottle is only a month old, so it is a bit confusing. The hops are certainly present, but more at the IPA level. Citrus and pine combine nicely with some grainy caramel to balance it out.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation, slight alcohol heat.

O: This bottle is a bit different from other versions I have had in the past. It is certainly not old, but doesn't have the hop presence I remember. Hopefully, next time I have it, it will be hoppier and I will alter my review accordingly.

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Photo of smcolw
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy dark amber in color. A small but lasting head. Some lace.

I like the floral bouquet of hops that blends well with the dry malt. I can detect a strong presence of alcohol.

The flavor starts with a crystal malt which quickly dissipates to a strong hop bitterness. Full body and slightly oily. Good carbonation to balance. Noticably high in alcohol.

A great entry into the world of Double IPA's. Too much of a good thing?

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Photo of mdfb79
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From 02/26/11 notes. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Bottled on date is unreadable.

a - Pours a transparent orange color with one inch of off white head and light carbonation evident. Head disappears quickly and leaves no lacing.

s - Smells of citrus hops, caramel malts, fruity malts, and light lemon. More malts than I expected.

t - Tastes of citrus hops, pretty bitter, pine hop, and fruity malts.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, little bitter bite up front.

d - A pretty good DIPA. A bit strong and a bit bitter, but still good. Would give another shot.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears an amber caramel hued tone with a lofty off white head leaves even specks of lacing Aroma contains deep piney layers sweet malt and alcohol notes tree sap nice brew nice hop resin layer. Taste has deep alcohol piney and citrus hop layers very malty profile finishes with a yeasty bread finish. Mouthfeel has a medium to full body smooth carbonation resinous oils flow across the palate. Drinkability is very smooth but I prefer this beefy brew in 12oz offerings I will revisit when I find it in bottles.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.28/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

All I now have left is Hades and HotShot and I will have had all the bottles of GD brew.

Pours a very foggy orange brownish amber with a crème head. Nose is piney hops with a salty edge. Flavor is heavy hops with a definite salty edge. Pine characteristics. Thick and even. Alcohol is very present in the mouth and slightly burns in the back. Feel is a good liquid body. Carbonation is good too. Drinkability has to get knocked down in the score a wee bit due to the burning alcohol on this one. But overall this is a good brew, I say. Not the greatest DIPA, by far. But certainly well made and worth trying.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber color with off-white head. Aroma has really resiny and earthy hops with a solid malt backbone. Taste starts malty and bitter at first but in the middle I get a really weird, stale flavor and it lingers for a while. Medium body and carbonation. I don't know if I got a bad bottle but the stale/stinky flavor kind of ruins it for me.

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Photo of stakem
3.95/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It appears a clear orange color with a finger of yellow stained head. Sticky lace clings in patches to the glass. Aroma is mostly citrusy hops mixed with a bit of herbal grass hop characteristics. Smooth medium bodied beer is mild with carbonation and a nice balance of malt sweetness verse hop bitters verse the alcohol bite. The high abv accents the hop bitterness and flavors quite well with an extra kick of spice. Quite warming overall which is to be expected from 10%. Lingering hops make themselves known long after the last sip. Overall quite good however nothing overly exciting that jumps out as making this beer remarkable. As it warms, a mild piney character comes out in both aroma and taste.

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Photo of Lare453
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz poured into a goblet.

A deep bronze color with a small white head that dissipates quickly. Nice lacing. Crystal clear

S biscuits, light molasses, light hops

T I taste fresh baked biscuits, butter, molasses, in the beginning and middle which leads into a big hoppy ending with lots of sweet floral notes. The aftertaste is light with nice bitter pleasant endin.

M a little thick, slightly prickly, good crispness.

O a great beer. Would buy and drink it often. A great big beer.

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Photo of jwc215
4.28/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

According to label, bottled in fourth week of September (about 2 months before tasting).

Pours deep copper with a thin head that leaves trails of lacing.

The smell is of citrus fruits with a hint of nuts. There is an underlying mustiness.

The taste is of chewy, bitter hops upfront - orange and grapefruit, along with some breadiness. A sweet, nutty, slightly grains malt backbone is very subtle, but enough to give it a nice body and to tie the hops together. The assertive hop character stays well ahead of the malt. A slight alcohol kick along with the hops gives it a long, dry finish.

The feel is incredible - chewy, full, rich, creamy and smooth.

This is a very nice double IPA. I wasn't overly impressed by the smell, but the taste is delicious and the feel dream-like. At 85 IBU's, this one lets it hop presence known loud and clear. But, the slight malt is not forgotten and gives it some relative balance. Although there are traces of alcohol in the finish, the alcohol is well-hidden for the abv level. A very good "sip and enjoy" hoppy delight.

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Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Biere Garden in Asheville

A - orange with a big, dense, white head that has great retention

S - bread, citrus, grapefruit, pineapple, oranges

T - bread, caramel, sugar, grapefruit, oranges, pineapple

M - medium to full bodied, warm, smooth, good carbonation

This is a pretty big, bold IPA. The alcohol is present but adds warmth and body. The hop character is not bitter and is very citrusy. It's malt forward and has incredible drinkability for the ABV. I will definitely have this again.

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

Lovely, bright amber color, full, fresh head of froth, creamy as all-get-out, utterly delightful.
Aroma, smoooth, I meant to say, smooo-oo–ooth, and luscious, with touches of pine, and citrus, a forest floor at loose in the nose. Uplifting and well worth smelling!
Taste: full blast of hoppiness, and brash fruity flavor. A rewarding overload of juicy taste delivers on the palate again and again. Nice, and nice.
Not as punishing or as harsh as a Rogue or a Dreadnaught, but I imagine they weren't out to slay the uninitiated with this, but welcome some into the heavily hoppy fold. Despite that qualm, a big, brash IPA, well worth any ale-lover's tasting! Yum, I says, as the flavor still laps up and around the mouth and I keep thinking "yum, yum, and, again, yum."
Tastiness beerily personified!

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Photo of smakawhat
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. No bottling date.

Off the pour sits a very nice uniform off white foam head of about three fingers. Body is clear, a perfect amber with little small slow rising bubbles of carbonation coming up from the bottom. Some sticky lacing.

Bouquet is a nice mix of toffee like malt, and sweet floral hop. Not jarring, but not small either. Smells a little soapy perfume as well.

Taste is a bit thick and syrupy, with good malt hop mix and very coating. The thickness kind of turns me off a little. Otherwise we got some real good flavor here and balance. Does feel a bit big and boozy though. Hop finish is quick and short.

Still pretty good drink from Great Divide here, good beer they make yes indeed!

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Photo of MasterSki
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in my Kuhnhenn tulip.

A - Two fingers of pale yellow foam, with excellent retention and concentric lacing. The brew is a semi-transparent copper-orange color. There's a fair bit of sediment at the bottom of the bottle, so make sure this sits for a while before pouring it.

S - Hoppy bitterness, tangerine, grapefruit. Surprising amount of malt, and I'm pretty sure the bottle is fresh as it has the new label. The smell isn't all that big, and it's pretty generic for a DIPA, albeit quite nice. There's a bit of alcohol present.

T - Starts with huge bitterness, but then mellows out to a nice caramel and citrus sweetness. Leaves a persistent bitter aftertaste. Alcohol is well hidden in the taste.

M - Medium viscosity with moderate carbonation. Lots of residual mouth-coating stickiness.

D - The bitterness has defeated me after one bomber. The ABV would defeat me if I had anymore. It's a solid brew, but not one I'd want very often.

This is pretty good, but not in the class of other DIPAs I've had. If my selection were limited I'd be content, but it just doesn't stand out in a pretty crowded field. I think the 22oz serving size is also a little daunting.

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Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
4.13 out of 5 based on 4,108 ratings.
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