Hercules Double IPA | Great Divide Brewing Company

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Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA
Hercules Double IPAHercules Double IPA

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American 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.

2007 Australian International Beer Awards, Gold Medal, Imperial IPA
2008 Australian International Beer Awards, Silver Medal, Imperial IPA
2009 Australian International Beer Awards, Silver Medal, Imperial IPA
2010 BeerAdvocate “Top 100 Beers On Planet Earth,” #48

User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 1,598 | Ratings: 4,243
Photo of tekstr1der
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours hazy light brown with finger of tan head that hangs around. Aroma is a balance of floral hop and earthy malt belying what's to come. Flavor packs a punch of bitter citrus rind mid-sip, and finishes with some lingering bitter. While the alcohol is masked in flavor it makes its presence obvious in the brain!

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good orange pour on this one, 3/5" off white head. Aroma drops them old school hops and a big wave of alcohol.

Taste hits the high 90ibu bitter notes, lots of hefty malt here, crystal malt, english pale malt, two row it seems. Lots of grapefruit. Straddles barleywine territory for sure. Bitterness is definitely the first and last thing you grasp on this one. Not as boozy as it smells.

Enjoyable but you better be ready for the big bitter time. Don't come here looking for any of your fruity melon and citrus hops.

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Photo of BethanyB
3.94/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The somewhat hazy, butterscotch-colored body bears a white head, which while slim, still leaves spotty lacing. The scent is surprisingly sweet and malty: buttered biscuits, caramel, and a chunk of honeycomb smell scrumptious, but were it not for some soft citrus hops, the aroma would be far from that of any IPA. The maltier taste is similar to Dogfish Head's 90-minute IPA, with the medium-high bitterness and resinous hop flavor being soothed by a ribbon of creamy caramel. It's even lighter and brighter than 90-minute however, and also less fruity, making for a simple and deceptive high alcohol content beer. The DIPA-ness may come through most in the mouthfeel, which is more creamy than crisp, and bears a light, and pleasant alcohol warming sensation in the finish. Ultimately, the recipe is a bit lacking complexity, but it still makes for a tasty, uniquely gentle take on the classic DIPA.

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Photo of josanguapo
4.79/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

From Beergium. In Teku glass. Watching Los Soprano 2x07. Deliciously sweet, with some between orange and pineapple that feels very refreshing. Dangerously drinkable. ABV very hidden

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Photo of Bruno74200
4.31/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very good dipa. Full of character. A bit boozy. Floral, piney and citrusy. A bit sweet but not cloying.
Warming alcohol. Quite balanced even with the high bitterness

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Photo of Roguer
3.92/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark copper brew, almost perfectly clear.

Big malty, hoppy, sweet aroma. Orange juice and pine; brown sugar and bread.

Big dose of caramel malt up front, immediately followed by a wave of juicy citrus. Toast follows, and the brew finishes with pine and peel.

Fairly thick and cloying. It's a big DIPA, and drinks like it.

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Photo of Scottmerrick
5/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I would marry this beer if my wife would let me. Its rich deep dark golden color houses its hoppiness well, and it's sweet but not too sweet, malty but not too malty, and with a whopping 10%ABV what's not to like! Some nights during my visit to Denver I was even up for two of 'em. Outstanding folks at the Brewery and I will not visit Denver again without I go (sic) to visit them again!

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Photo of NEdward
4.19/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

cream colored head, tight bubbles; amber/sap colored body, light carbonation. evasive malt nose, really not much there. the malt comes through in the taste but is complicated in interesting ways by the hops. sweet but not in a pestering way, spicy, some really delicate floral scent type of notes coming through now and again, pervasive piney sweet dryness, a very firm hop finish.

similar to victory's hop devil, though not as lingeringly sweet (I suspect the 10% abv has something to do with that).

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Photo of LAp
4.19/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served from the bottle in a 4-5oz tasting glass at a beer bracket comparing Great Divide and Ballast Point. This was the dark horse for me. I've always known Great Divide for their great stouts, barleywine, and proficiency with big malty beers, and have always been a little underwhelmed by their Titan IPA, so I didn't go into this with high hopes. It absolutely reversed my expectations. Poured a straw-honey, and nosed a dank, grassy, herbal hop note. The palate followed with much the same, focusing much less on a bitter hop profile and much more on a savory, whole-cone hop body. This merged well with an underlying malt presence that was complementary but not overdone and rounded out with a strong medium/medium-thick body. Overall, an impressive DIPA.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a dark amber/copper color with 2 fingers of head that slowly fades down to a decent cap that leaves some soapy lacing

S: Huge earthy and fruity hop notes collide with nutty caramel malts that somehow all balance together. No alcohol noticeable

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with the earthy tones of the hops and nuttiness of the malts an slowly takes a woody tone overall. Fruity notes emerge after the nutty notes and woodiness fades a little. Moderately bitter throughout, but the caramel sweetness and alcohol all co-mingle extremely well together. Finishes with lingering nutty notes and some fruity alcoholic esters

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation

O: Definitely not your typical citrusy, fruit driven DIPA. This melds so well together between the earthy hop tones, sweet nutty maltiness, and alcohol and is one to sit down and sip on given the strength alone. Definitely worth a shot if you're looking for something other than your typical DIPA

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Photo of gutbuster
4.42/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hercules pours a deep mahogany in color with a very dense and creamy like tan head with long lasting retention. A bit of sediment in the glass from my over aggressive pour. Lacing is out of this world. It looks as if I have spread whipped cream in my glass. Very dense and lasts throughout the session.

Very floral with a strong but noticeable balance of caramel sweetness with grapefruit and pine resin on the aroma. Very aromatic to me personally.

My sip starts off with a dose of brown sugar sweetness that is quickly followed by grapefruit, oranges and pine mid palate. Finishes with a hint of caramel and very mild dose of heat from the alcohol.

Dry with a medium amount of carbonation and a medium body.

This is an awesome IPA. I'm glad that I got the chance to try it relatively fresh.

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Photo of Rogerlb
4.01/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear and slight amber, with a scant head. The aroma is hoppy with some citrus, maybe it's grapefruit or mango. Nothing surprising.

The taste follows with a more hoppy and bitter hit right away. The citrus is sour, then cream and caramel malts start to balance the thing out. No burnt char, just some toast. Nice handful of things going on. Ends dry and a bit resiny.

This has a heavy feel, chewy, could be the 10% which isn't so hidden. The bitter hoppy forwardness makes this drink like a West Coast IPA rather than a (usually more citrus/juicy) DIPA. Focused and good drinking beer. Not bad.

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Photo of craftbeersweden
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bottle from the Great Divide Big Show box that I got last week.

It pours clear with a beautiful dark amber color. A three finger high, white-yellow head that leaves lacing on the glass.

Nose: Caramel malt, fudge, butter, syrup, pine, resin, orange and a bit of citrus.
Taste: Again the caramel - a lot of caramel! Resin, pine, citrus, lemon zest and tea.
Mouthfeel: Full body. High carbonation. A large bitterness that grows at the end and even after the beer has gone down my throat. Bitter, dry ending.
Great Divide has done a great job to hide the high ABV (10%) in the taste. I only recognize it from the warmth in my body :)

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Photo of GuitarIPA
3.72/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

L - Brown and amber color, lots of floaters
A/T - Very malty and sweet, some bitterness on the finish.
F - nice medium body, good carbonation
O - liked the flavor, but the sweetness became overpowering for me

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Photo of Reggie1014
4.26/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This beer has a unique golden amber hue. Small head of foam with some lacing. Smell is a hoppy grapefruit mix, not too overpowering. The taste is hops up front with some alcohol burn and the back end is sweet and easy with the grapefruit kicking in. The feel is dense compare to some of the other IPAs I've tried. Overall I really like the power and passion that this beer delivers. I like the higher abv, and they do a great job masking it, yet give you enough to let you know it's there. Great beer! One of my favorites so far. I'm really new to the craft beer experience though. So it will be interesting to see if this stands over time.

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Photo of Marraybay
3.8/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Look: Cloudy amber orange with a small-subdued white head.
Some suspended sediment seems to be present.

Smell: Large citrus and pine notes.

Taste: A bit of sweet malt upfront that momentarily turns
the citrus into something orange-like, but is eventually overrun by
full-on grapefruit pith and booze.

Feel: Full

Overall: An intense DIPA: A bit larger overall than my go to, DFH 90 minute,
both in terms of citrus and booze, but definitely a good brew. Believe it became
sweeter and gentlier as it warmed. In the end, feel that I'd need to sample
a couple more of these to adequately draw a bead on how it truly rates. Until then...

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Photo of Flying-ABV
3.24/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pint straight off the tap into a nice tumbler at a fine restaurant. This was a disappointment, mainly because I felt the taste wasn't well balanced. There's definitely a strong hop profile here - it has that sort of "grainy" mouth feel and sharp bitterness that I don't care for in many strong IPA's. It would have been much better for me if there was more balance with smooth malts and more character with the complex citrus notes that were absent. At 10.0ABV this should have been much "juicier" but the nose revealed more of just another strong run of the mill IPA with lots of alcohol.
I'm not gonna talk it down too much - I think this is just one example of an IPA that didn't suit my taste.

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Photo of gustavmahler-09
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep orange, two fingers of foam, lingers. Smell not obvious. Taste rich, fruity, lingers on the palate. Feel thick, creamy. Altogether an enjoyable beer.

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Photo of heytomcat
3/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Didn't pick up a huge amount of hops on the nose. This is an extremely aggressive beer with a lot of piney hop character. It is pretty well balanced but just a bit too hoppy for my taste. A very well made beer for the style.

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Photo of Marius
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

33cl bottle. Dark brown-ruby pour with a thin, smooth tan head. Smells dank, with notes of citrus, pine and caramel. Bitter-sweet taste, well balanced except maybe for the alcohol that comes a little too powerful.

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Photo of stratusjeans
3.89/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 11/3/15. Poured into snifter.

Looks dark golden orange with one finger of head.

Smells hoppy and slightly sweet and inviting.

Taste is short. No balance. Hops and earthiness but the hops aren't super strong and less so with the earth. No malt balance.

Mouthfeel is lacking. Somewhat full up front but dissipates immediately and lingering bitterness. No lingering flavor complexity, just bitterness.

Overall disappointing.

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Photo of HotDogBikeRide
4.44/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nothing really jumps out, but then again I am relatively new to this style. The alcohol is extremely well hidden (I'm probably going to get drunk without even noticing), such an easy drinker with great lacing and intense hops. On tap at Brew's Brothers in Galveston. Great mouthfeel and awesome with some wings.

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Photo of dcscientist
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on draft at a restaurant, and it was mislabeled as a pale ale so I had no idea it was a 10% ABV double IPA. That's dangerous, but it's also pretty tasty. Luckily I had plenty of food to balance it out during the evening. It really doesn't taste like an 85 IBU beer, which is a good thing in my book, otherwise I might not have ordered it since I don't tend to go for hoppy beers. This one had good balance and wasn't overly piney or citrusy. Another solid beer from Great Divide.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
3.98/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(bottle date Aug 27 2015... poured into a Chouffe tulip)

L: tall tan head atop richly amber-hued, hazy liquid, good bit of flaky sediment floating about... foam is open-structured and spongy, bouncing as I lift the glass

S: weak booze, at first, which eventually peaks out a bit more as it warms and the foam recedes... smells aged - bold caramel, faint leafy-minty-citrus-rind-y hops... very familiar West Coast, earthy-piney-zesty aromas - nothing unique... potency fair-good

T: richly malty, blanketed in the whispers of dying resins... notable medicinal swell in the finish, as well as a latent rise of tea-like, tannic bitterness... upon second sip, hop character much more apparent - bitterness enhances, more lemon zest... more into it, the citrus flavors become more intense, while the bitterness fails to abate, and a brown bread crust note lingers in the back

F: any body felt on the palate could likely be from the resins, as this drinks pretty darn soft and light, but not quite crisp, smooth but maybe only mildly viscous

O: I've had this rather fresh, and the hop flavors are naturally brighter and the overall taste sharper, but this is far from dull in this state, the alcohol and bitterness surely aiding in its lasting triumph... I'd say it even tastes more like a hop-forward West Coast barleywine... it'd be interesting to let this age for a year or two, let the malt come out a little more - the bitterness is bold and beautiful, and I doubt it would tail off much (which is fine with me)

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Photo of TheSixthRing
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottling date of 10/22/15

Appearance - Pours slighty hazy and amber in color with an off-white head that peaks at just over a finger's width. Good retention, eventually settling to a thin, broken layers of suds across the surface. Lacing consists of a thick sheet with lines breaking off and streaking down the side of the glass.

Smell - Ruby red grapefruit, light pine, mango and some light biscuit maltiness arounds out the aroma.

Taste - Lots of mango flavor upfront, with a touch of banana peel. There's an underlying grapefruit pith bitterness which emerges strongly toward the finish. Malts are present, but hard to pinpoint a distinct flavor, lending instead a rather generic sweetness. The finish is bittersweet, with the aforementioned mango/grapefruit aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Full in body with low to moderate carbonation. Goes down well enough, with a light touch of astringent dryness.

Overall - A solid all-around DIPA. Nicely balanced and the hop bill has a fairly unique twist on the citrus heavy style. One I would likely buy again given the chance.

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Hercules Double IPA from Great Divide Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 4,243 ratings