Hoptober Golden Ale | New Belgium Brewing

Hoptober Golden AleHoptober Golden Ale
Liked This Beer
3.79 w/ 964 ratings
Hoptober Golden AleHoptober Golden Ale

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: American Blonde Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Riccymon on 08-20-2009

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 964 |  Reviews: 499
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.39/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not bad, didnt expect to like this beer so much. Appearance was pale straw yellow, usually not the greatest sign in a beer. Smell, aroma, didn't give me anything to think I was getting into anything good.

But alas, the taste, not very complicated, light, but a good little hop zest and mild bitterness. I don't know that I would call this "hop" tober and all, but for an all access type of beer like New Belgium makes (this would be a good alternative to the fat tire hags), this makes sense to bring them in another direction.

Mouthfeel and drinkability rate higher, because it doesn't fade, nor does it get tiresome.

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Photo of far333
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale straw colored with a white head that sinks quickly. Aroma of bread dough and citrus, some notes of pine.

Flavors of hops upfront, mix of citrus and floral, notes of honey and cinnamon. Some grapefruit rind in the finish. Piney notes linger. Full mouthfeel, tingly carbonation, a bit dry, good beer.

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Photo of tmoneyba
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from TheOtherDave. Poured cleaqr copper color with an average off-white frothy head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate earthy hop and malt aroma. Medium body with a slick texture and soft carbonation. Medium earthy bitter flavor with a medium bitter finish of moderate duration. Good drinkable brew.

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Photo of brewanddrink
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

i am a fan of all oktoberferst style or spin offs so i had to try this one. It pour smooth golden into my glass and had a great malt smell with hop notes following right after. It is good with food or by itself. Just one more great beer put out by the awesome New Belgium brewing co.

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Photo of kimcgolf
4.07/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle to a nice golden color with a thin white head that lingered well and left okay lacing. Hoppy floral nose with a hint of malt, carried over smoothly into the taste. Mouthfeel of this medium bodied beer was slightly bittersweet, with a slight tingle. rounded to a nice, long, smooth finish. The best I've had from New Belgium.

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Photo of Florida9
4.13/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Bright yellow in color. Pours with about 1/2" of off-white, creamy thick head that eventually reduces down, but never really goes away. Nice lacing.

S: Grapefruit and citrus. Lemon. Heavy aromatic hops.

T: Slightly sweet with very light malts. This one is all about the hops flavor. Orange-lemon citrus mixed with some floral notes. Sweet corn. Virtually no bitterness at all.

M: Light to medium with medium carbonation. Clean and crisp.

D: A very good beer and a good alternative to the typical American adjunct. Lightly malted, a little sweet, and bursting with hop flavor without any hop bitterness.

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Photo of pants678
3.46/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Pours a yellow-orange with a retaining white head. This is what your non-beer geek pictures beer as it's supposed to be.

I can smell the hops with vanilla in the mix, a smooth honey as well.

Malts? They're an afterthought, of course. This beer as all subtley, well hoped up front with an earthy combination of rye and grain that, as you would expect, leaves a dry finish. Maybe my palate ain't so sensative, but I want something more popping out at me. The rye/wheat all starts to stand out toward the middle, a honey aftertaste is just apparent on the backend.

About as easy as they come to drink, with a small carbonation which has a bit of a sting on the end.

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Photo of kkipple
4.36/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Mmm, New Belgium Hoptober... I've gone through a 12 pack and a half before I even thought to reviewing this gem. And it IS a gem. Fat Tire haters, you may want to avert your eyes.

A. Crystal-clear appealing yellow-gold, with a few lazily rising bubbles. A smack-dam gorgeous full porcelain head fluffs up a half-inch about my glass, looking quite well-fed and falls seductively, leaving lots of sticky white lace all 'round the glass. The head never fully dies. Simply wonderful.

S. Just flat out interesting: a wonderful earthy, dry and hop-complex aroma. Notes of honey, wheat and grain, with a rawness that is eye-opening and full. The hops are spicy and layered, but keep from overwhelming - this is not an IPA, or even a Pale ale, although it has more hop character than plenty of beers in those styles.

T. And where has this beer been all my life? You could be forgiven if you said Hoptober was a "hoppy blonde", and it is, but it's just so much more... no doubt, the 4 advertised malts (pale, wheat, oats, rye) and 5 hops (buy one and read the label) go a long way to the delicious layered hop and malt interplay here, but it rather defies easy description. Hoptober is dry, and grainy, and rye-spiced, and hop-bitter, and lemony, and earthy, and sweet, and full, and wet, and easy, and... and... well, I'm on my second bottle and not yet done with the review, that's what. This is exceptional, raw and fresh-tasting stuff.

M / D. Wet, medium-full, finely carbonated and crisp, quite easy to drink - in fact, superbly easy to drink. Just sorta slides down on its own. The 6% is too high and is just barely noticeable, I'd much prefer this be in the high 4%, but I shan't complain too much.

Hoptober is my sleeper hit of the season; a deliciously subtle and complex session brew that resists easy pigeon-holing and absolutely is memorable. Give this one a few more years and it very well be THE go-to Autumn brew for many more folks than just myself. This is one of the top beers I've tried in 2009. Please go buy some Hoptober.

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Photo of pmccallum86
3.6/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a two finger bubbly head that leaves lacing down the sides of the glass as it dissipates.

The smell is of lemon zest, grass and biscuity malt.

The taste is similar to the smell, lemon notes, grassy earthy notes, biscuit malt and a variety of hops.

Smooth creamy mouthfeel, medium carbonation.

Good drinkability, goes down smooth and refreshingly.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear gold, with 2 fingers of foamy eggshell white head. Retention stays creamy and rich, leaving a great looking cascade of lace back. The aroma has a huge freshly hopped bouquet on it, being floral and spicy up front before settling into a much more pronounced dank mix of herbal character and citrus. Grainy sweetness hangs on the edges, giving this some extra earthy tang.

The bitterness in the taste is livey and spicy on the tongue, with some extra gritty earthy character going on as well. This is balanced by sweetness and bright citrus flavors, with a bit of toasted breadiness creeping in on the backend. Finishes spicy, earthy, and VERY dry. The type of dryness that sucks the moisture out of your mouth. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a prickly feel that spreads out in the mouth that then gives way to a much sleeker and oily texture which runs throughout the body. This is pretty easy moving overall.

This was nice. A Blonde Ale infused with a hearty amount of dank and earthy hop character, this reminded me a lot of a wet hop beer at times. Good drinkibility on this as well. A fine fall seasonal from New Belgium.

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Photo of uwmgdman
3.77/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a brilliant golden color with a clingy, moderate white head. The aroma is highly hoppy-citrus and floral. The flavor is highly hoppy as well, citrusy with a bit of sweet, doughy malt in the background. The hop bitterness is medium-high; this combined with a slightly dry finish yields a hop forward beer. The carbonation and body are medium. Overall a well brewed beer, nothing out of this world but certainly tasty.

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Photo of whynot44
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bright, clear golden color with a decent foamy white head that retains fairly well and manages some nice lacing all the way.

The aroma is pine needles and grapefruit with some nice light malt in the background.

The taste is likewise led by the pine and citrus hops and hints of grassiness with a very nice lightly sweet, slightly spicy malt backbone for a very nice balance.

Medium bodied, smooth and very drinkable, a really nice fall beer but I could do this year round with no problem.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice foamy head topping two fingers an sticky lacing. Just exceptional bubbling, hundreds of tiny columns of bubbles rising to the top of this foamy brew. The color is a golden hay with light copper hues mixed in. Medium hoppy nose, adding light citrus and heavy earthen grass aromas to a dry pilsner malt smell. The taste is mildly bitter to start Repeats of the earthen grass, but no citrus. The malts add a dry toasted gristy taste and mouthfeel. Pretty good balance for a hoppy blonde ale. Good tasting beer, but the hoppiness makes this beer falls a little short for drinkability on my scale. Still very good overall.

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Photo of beer2day
4.22/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a decent pale gold with a forced 1-finger head. No retention. Laces well.

Very bright nose. Lots of hops here, which I should have guessed from the name. Definitely not your standard fall beer. Faint citrus, mostly lemon, and some very faint pine. Picking up toast as well, maybe some toasted malt thrown in.

Thin up front, but the hops kick in quick. Very nice flavor. I get the roasted malt that was there in the nose as well as some bready yeast and a slight lemon-apricot zest. A fall IPA.

Feel has a smidge less body than the flavor demands, but not a big detraction.

Overall, a very nice beer from NB. Well worth a try. Or two.

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Photo of mntlover
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear pale yellow color with a white head that fallls to ring of bubbles and laces well.

Smell is hops grassy, piney lightly herbal riding on a sweet malt background. Really nothing extra ordinary but fins myself really enjoying it.

Taste is same as nose sweet malt but lightly dry at same time. Lots of hops not overly bitter just nice flavors, citrus lots of fresh cut grass nice herbal notes. Taste is nice sweet and hoppy and fresh crisp even clean at the same time.

Mouthfeel is light with decent carbonation thats peppy withoout being fizzy.

Drinkability is great this brew is so easy drinking nothing special really but my taste buds keep yelling more please. Usually this time of year have quit a few Oktoberfests but tried this one and have been buying more for some reason. Just a good easy drinking beer.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Nonic. 40 IBUs, Serve at 45 degrees F, 6% ABV, Best before 12FEB10.

A - Totally clear golden yellow with a rocky white head. A solid two-finger construction with good retention and superb lacing on the glass. Totally blanketing any area of the glass possible.

S - Plenty of American hops burst fourth in the nose. A lot of grapefruit citrus punch with a bit of resiny, sappy, pine needle. The hops are balanced well by a sweet malt backbone, but still take the lead.

T - It's a nicely balanced beer that, while maintaining the American hop presence up front, allows for a good malty structure underneath. The hops are still citrusy grapefruit with the pine resin but not as potent as the aroma would lead you to believe. The malty backbone has a complexity to it with a sweet touch and holds it all together.

M - Well-carbonated but smooth, this medium-bodied golden ale goes down nicely . It's a bit slick and oily on the tongue too.

D - A good early fall beer, it's crisp and refreshing qualities blended with it's medium-body and bouquet of hops makes it a drinking winner! A fantastic beer to cool off with after a brisk afternoon of raking leaves.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Lightly clouded gold/amber color. Poured a 2 finger foamy white head with good retention. Decanted continually. Laced in thick rings.

S: Grapefruit, citrus up front. Sweet malt in the background with some orange.

T: Flavoring hops and malt prominant with plenty of grapefruit and citrus hops. Sharply bitter in the finish for balance.

M: Light-to-medium body. Ample carbonation. Good malt and hop flavoring balanced with bitter.

D: Very easy to drink. Smooth and nicely balanced. Moderate ABV makes it very sessionable.

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Photo of GilGarp
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Initially skeptical of this one for some reason, possibly because their recent seasonals have been "crowd pleasers" in the worst way.

Best before Apr 2, 2010.

Served cold in a pint glass. It's very pale yellow in color with great clarity and white head. The head sticks around a good while leaving some very nice lacing on the glass. Otherwise a pretty average looking beer.

Aroma is sweet with light malts and mild hops. Nothing too exciting here but it's pleasant.

Flavor is still mild and not as hoppy as the name might suggest but it's good in the long run. Pale malts start the beer off sweet but it soon becomes surprisingly bitter. It's not a big 'west coast' type of hop bitterness. More british or pacific NW with an earthy/grassy character. Nice balance to it.

Mouthfeel is light in body and heavy in carbonation. I prefer the opposite but it's not too bad for this style.

Drinkability is very good. This could easily be a summer seasonal and I would greatly prefer it to their current Skinny Dip although, given the way it sells around here, I know it's not going away.

Overall a more impressive offering than I expected. A great session beer. I just don't know how it works as an autumn seasonal.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle with a freshness code of 19MAR10. Pours a brilliantly clear, medium yellow color with a creamy topping of white head. Retention is excellent as is the lacing. This is a great looking beer.

Smell is hopalicious, as tropical, grassy and piney hop aromas are dominant. I guess that is to be expected with five varietals of cones. There is a bit of underlying snappy wheat and grainy barley in there, but they definitely take a backseat to the fresh aromatic hops.

I get the spiciness of the rye, crisp wheat and creamy oats, but it almost seems like it is too much for a blonde ale to handle, especially with the multitude of hops assaulting the palate at the same time. Bitterness is high and hop flavor is very grassy and hay-like. After the delicious aroma, I feel like the taste has let me down a bit. Just too much going on in this beer for me to find it overly enjoyable, although I applaud NB for trying something like this.

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Photo of Kromes
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: crystal clear gold with a white head and good lacing down the glass.

S: some sweet herbal,grassy and pine hop aromas.

T: There are some sweet malt flavors mixed with an herbal, flowery, pine hop that has sort of a candy sweetness in the finish. There is not too much bitterness in the beer, just a little in the finish, but the sweet malts blend in nicely.

M: light body mouthfeel. With carbonation that is also on the light side. Maybe some oily hop in there. I like it though.

D: Very tasty and not too overbearing or thick. Definitely a delicious session beer.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours an incredibly clear golden color with a thick creamy head... Super clear, like a pilsner almost...

Hoppy aromas mix with light graininess here... The hops seem to take over in the end and that's a good thing...

Pretty good hoppy flavor with this... Light malts mixed with the piney hops make this a nice little brew...

Not bad at all.. I liked the spring seasonal a little better but there's nothing wrong with this one at all...

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Photo of bonsreeb85
3.84/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - clear golden with foamy ivory head that stands about an inch tall before dissapateing to a thing layer of foam.

S - smells of grapefruit, citrus and dank mary j nuggies. excellent smell on this one, dank and juicy!

T - bitter up-front, slight malt flavor somes creeping through but grapefruit and citrus hops w/ floral qualities are predominant. Flavor is slightly less then potent, especially after such a strong nose.

MF - quite crisp and carbonated, with a medium light body. rather thin, but easy to quaff.

D - excellent session seasonal from NB.

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Photo of drumrboy22
3.18/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a New Belgium globe glass. Beer was a golden straw color, with a one-finger, foamy white head. Moderate carbonation and heavy lacing.

Aroma was light hops, citrus, grass and spices.

Taste was lightly hoppy, apples and grains. Very crisp and clean. Easy drinking, but a bit on the plain side.

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Photo of PaleAlien2
3.69/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden yellow. Looks like a blonde ale...oh, I guess it is. I don't know why I was expecting something like an amber. I guess you just don't see this style very often for a fall seasonal.

Hops and citrus in the aroma.

Has an interesting flavor. Lemon and hops. I don't know what kind of hops New Belgium uses, but their beers definitely have a unique hop character.

Generally not a huge fan of New Belgium beers but this one is pretty good.

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Photo of mdcrouser
2.95/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Looks like an IPA - golden yellow, with a light white head ringing the top and staying throughout. Great, thick rings to the end.

Bitter, sweet, spicy, lemongrass, and fresh on the nose, it smells much like what I'd expect from an IPA as well.

Crisply hopped, with a bit of immediate spiciness and grapefruit notes, fading into some evergreen and even a hint of bubblegum - really? Yes, bubblegum - I'd never tasted it in a beer before either. Too "flat" in overall flavor profile though to be fully appealling - it's just not very complex, failing to deliver much more than those basic flavors.

A little hop bomb. It lingers in the mouth for quite awhile, and like a wily grandmother, turns everything bitter. Carbonation is fine, but again, nothing outstanding.

It's fine to drink one or more, but there are many better choices - just save a good IPA from the summer and enjoy it during the fall if you're looking for hoppy. Not sure why they felt the need to position this as a fall seasonal, as it's clearly out of season.

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Hoptober Golden Ale from New Belgium Brewing
Beer rating: 65.9% out of 100 with 964 ratings
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