Red Hoptober
New Belgium Brewing Company

Red HoptoberRed Hoptober
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American Amber / Red Ale
3.8 | pDev: 13.16%
New Belgium Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Red HoptoberRed Hoptober
Notes: Centennial, Cascade & Eldorado hops
Reviews: 177 | Ratings: 812 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of mothmanscott
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes 11/27/12: Pours a clear, very dark amber with red hues producing 2 fingers of frothy, lasting, tan head that leaves exquisite clumpy rings and sheets of lace. Absolutely beautiful! Aroma is biscuit, toast, chocolate and a hint of caramel with grassy, pine and citrus hops hints declining in that order. Taste is fronted by toasted malts with a biscuity burnt bread undertone backed by by pine and grass hoppiness. The finish is a peppery, lightly dry, burnt brown sugar and hop bitterness with a similar but even drier aftertaste that is rapidly predominated by the bitter. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, smooth with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Brown and red look, small tan head over a quarter of an inch. Mild red and nutty aroma, slight hops.

Taste yielded good c hops. A lot of brown and red malts, toasted appropriately. Feels like October, a little malt, still some last hops from the summertime brews.

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Photo of Bockrules
3.99/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass

A - Pours a perfectly transparent amber with several small bubbles rising to the creamy, two-finger, off-white head. A nice cap stays in place all the way down the glass. Leaves behind several large splotches of lacing. Nice.

S - Caramel, red apple and sour earthy hops great the nose upon opening the bottle. More of the same in the glass with perhaps some caramelized brown sugar. Really quite good.

T - Caramelized brown sugar and red apple upfront. The body is a nice blend of tart red apple, hop bitterness riding on the back of the tongue, and a hint of caramel malt. Huge wave of hops and apple as the beer passes over the back of the tongue fades into a biscuit, caramel and slightly overripe red apple finish.

M - Medium bodied with plenty of carbonation to give it a fresh feeling (even though this particular bottle is several months old). Well done.

As promised, Red Hoptober is a well hoped red ale that has a beautiful appearance. The only downside to this gem of a beer is that on a clean palate, the finish will start to turn slightly caustic at the end. Otherwise, the flavors, mouthfeel, and smell jive well to form a very delicious brew. One of my favorite red ales, I hope to get some more this coming fall. Now that I go to CSU, hopefully I can get is straight from the brewery!

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Bockrules from New Mexico, Apr 15, 2014
Photo of blackie
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

last minute grocery store purchase pre - wolfpack vs tennessee opener

a: served in a curved pint glass, the beer is a deep reddish brown in color, topped with a finger of khaki head that retains well and leaves some lace behind

s: lots of nutty roasted malts with a touch of caramel sweetness, earthy pine and some grapefruit rind, leafty and autumnal, a hint of fruit here and there

m: carbonation medium-high, body on the lighter side of moderate, crisp but satisfying mouthfeel

t: surprisingly flavorful at first sip - toasted and roasted malts give leafy, toffee dipped coffee flavors, nutty, some glimpses of darker fruits, well hopped with notes of earthy pine and dried citrus, a good flavor set here

o: an interesting beer that pulls off a nice complexity between hop and malt while not overwhelming, instead maintaining great balance

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blackie from Oregon, Sep 01, 2013
Photo of jimmah120
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle, taken from a sampler pack. review is from notes

dark amber look, small yellowish head. smell is light earthy hops and grain. taste is dominated by bitter earthy hops accentuated by toasty grain and the NB house yeast/malt.

overall a nice bitter, hoppy brew. not the best NB, but solid. rating for style, it's supurb.

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jimmah120 from Minnesota, Jun 17, 2013
Photo of cyclonece09
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a 14 oz "pint" glass. Pours a deep red with a nice foamy slightly off white head. Smells of deep caramelized malt with chocolate and slight floral aroma. Tastes of slight chocolate with nice piney/earthy hop bite. The malt dominates at first, then the hops take over. Beer is carbonated fine and for a light/medium body, it goes down very smooth, could definately see throwing a couple of these back in a short time. Overall, a very good beer.

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cyclonece09 from Wisconsin, Apr 11, 2013
Photo of PorterLambic
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured somewhat aggressively to start into a standard pint. A 2 1/2" head of tan fluffiness develops before receding, leaving some scattered lacing.
Smell is hops first, a blend of citrus and pine, with some roasted malt peeking out from behind the more olfactorily obvious. Balance is heavily towards the hops.
Taste is somewhat better balanced but with hops still leading the parade. Some lightly roasted malt shows up to try to counter the pine and floral hops. Good flavor but not very complex.
Somewhat watery start transitions to a warming and medium-to-full body. Lightish effervescence is reminiscent of an IPA as is the hop note though both are reduced versions thankfully. A nice brew overall but hoppier than I prefer most of the time.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep amber in color, with good clarity, a small, dense tan head, and thick, sticky lacing, which coats the glass walls. The carbonation is slight and slow-rising.

Aroma: Quite prominent hop aroma, with the Cascade hops quite pronounced. and an abundance of spicy notes. Dark bread and caramel notes are also present, but very much understated, compared to the hops.

Taste: Opens with an abundance of dark malts, which are soon overshadowed by an aggressive wave of hops. AS the taste progresses, the malts are overpowered by the hops. Finishes dry, with a long and lingering, almost harsh metallic and medicinal hop presence

Mouth feel: Smooth and soft, quite pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: This would seem to be much more appealing to hop heads than connoisseurs of malty beers.

Presentation: Packaged in a custom twelve-ounce brown glass bottle with a pry-off crown, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

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Pegasus from Texas, Jan 26, 2013
Photo of Jadjunk
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"A pleasing Ale for the harvest season, Red Hoptober is pitched with Centennial, Cascade and Eldorado hops. It's the perfect sipper for these last, fevered days of summer and the cooling, coming autumn nights. Bold and delicious, Red Hoptober has just enough bitter to delight. Crack one open, sit back and enjoy the season's change." Brewed in the style of an American Red Ale. Date on the bottle is 04 November 2012. This is the latest fall seasonal by New Belgium.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a pint glass. Served north of 45º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a tannish head of a thick, creamy consistency. Beer thickens as it settles, good retention. Body color is a clear pale reddish brown with moderate carbonation. Lacing is thin and streaked. Very appealing appearance. 4.75

(Smell) Caramel, heavy bready malt with toffee and roasty nut tones. Hop notes are full on flavor, milder on bitterness. Earthy, resiny and floral tones. Appealing balance, a bit more heavy on the malt but with a complex roasty malt profile. Potency is high. 4

(Taste) Malt profile is full and roasty. Caramel and toffee sweetness with some nutty dryness and a puff of clean smoke on the finish. Earthy, resiny hops provide slightly less bold flavor than the malt bill but work in a substantial bitterness to meet an enjoyable balance. Enjoyable flavor and very drinkable. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) Mild crisp carbonation, a bit fuzzy on the tongue. Body is medium for the style and medium overall. Alcohol presence is low. A good pairing, although a creamier and thicker carbonation texture would be possibly more pleasurable, I found the body near ideal in depth and drinkability. 3.5

(Overall) New Belgium's winning streak apparently comes with its consistently well-built seasonal collection, and Red Hoptober is no unwelcome addition. There's a well-balanced malt and hop bill with plenty of unique flavors to it. I have few gripes about this beer and am looking forward to it (possibly) returning next fall. 4

New Belgium Brewing's
Red Hoptober Ale

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Jadjunk from Georgia, Jan 18, 2013
Photo of DragonzBreath
3.71/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A beautiful day in mid autumn called for this diverse tasting. We started with this Red Hoptober Ale. Very flavorfull. a beautiful pour. This beer from New Belgium Brewery was a perfect beer to start the evening. Nice red coloring with a bright head. smooth with a slight citrus ending. 6.0 abv

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Photo of hosehead83
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from "bomber" bottle into a standard pint glass.
Clear copper/amber in color, with a thick cap of bone-white foam.
Aroma-Toasted malt, piney hops
Taste-Big piney hopwave followed by spicy, toasted malt backbone. Not sure what "Eldorado" hops are but are in use here according to the label, and they work out very nicely, providing a flavorfull piney aspect that complements the spicy malt very well. Recommended.

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Photo of mactrail
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Handsome coppery amber in the pint shaker. Average head but decent carbonation and usual well-made NB quality. Aromas of resiny hops but not very bitter. Earthy notes on the tongue along with that fragrant flavor.

A brief kiss of malt. Just the sightest sweetness followed by the tanginess. An interesting tasty mouthful but mostly it's of hops. Light bodied and watery in a thirst-quenching way. Pleasant less-bitter beer with a different take on the hop-centered style.

On tap at La Jolla Brew House. First draft beer of 2013 so I made sure it wasn't memorable.

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mactrail from Washington, Jan 02, 2013
Photo of WoodBrew
4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I loved the original it is no surprise that I like the amber version. The beer pours a clear amber with finger and a half froathy slightly off white head that is leaving a lace. The smell is malty with a slight pine hop kick. The taste is a very nicely balanced hoppy red. Starts malty then there is a kick of piney slight citrus hop followed by bittering hops that clean the pallete. The mouthfeel is light to medium in body with decent carbonation. Overall this is a great beer and I could drink the heck out of it.

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Photo of pmcadamis
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear garnet brew with a nice little tan head. Decent lace. Head reduced to a collar after a few minutes. Really nice color... like the purple and darkest red leaves in autumn.

S - Deep and dusky malt notes with a hint of pine. Fresh brown pumpernickel. Minor tinge of penny-copper metallic aroma.

T - Much more hops than the nose suggest, but still very well balanced leaning toward malty. Well worn penny in the aftertaste. Quite complex for a style that can often be a little boring.

M - Medium bodied and neutral. A bit of citrusy acid at the finish. Would pair well with a burger, brat, or other "bar food."

Pretty good stuff. On the hoppy side for the style.

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pmcadamis from Illinois, Dec 18, 2012
Photo of doubledteague
3.1/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

poured from a 12oz bottle into a frosty pint glass.

A- Dark red/amber color. (bout like a Coke) with a tan or very light brown lasting head and some nice lacing along the glass.

S- Right up front hit with the hops and the earthy smell, I do get some hints of pine, and ever so slight chocolatey smell.

T- Hoptober is about right for the name, very earthy taste. The only down to this is the aftertaste, not bad immediately however the longer you sit on it, it seems to taste like burned wood and just increasingly gets worse.

M- medium bodied, very dry, medium carbonation, can get a slight hint of the abv here.

O- no complaints other than the aftertaste that just seems to grow. Would definitely drink again, and most likely will end up trying again simply due to the best by date on this bottle was the week before I bought it, and two weeks before I tried it.

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Photo of larryarms847
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a nice light amber red with good clarity.

Nutty, caramel, slight citric aroma.

Biscuits, caramel, toffee, and slightly earthy hop bitterness.

Light-bodied, medium carbonation.

Overall, a damn good beer to bring in the fall.

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larryarms847 from Illinois, Nov 26, 2012
Photo of maki88
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5


12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Enjoyed at home.

A: Deep, rich clear, red color, bordering on a burnt color/brown. Thick, long-lasting, tan head with beautiful lacing. A beautiful-looking beer.

S: Sharp, hoppy aroma, balanced with some sweeter notes of citrus (grapefruit?) and sweet malts. Definite note of bready, toasty malts.

T: Far more pleasant and balanced than the nose suggested. Sharp and toasty up front, with the sweeter malt and citrus flavors blending in for a pleasant finish.

M: A bit thin, but generally unremarkable. Carbonation seems a bit high.

O: Solid brew - definitely lives up to the "hoptober" name. I wouldn't be knocking down doors to get this again, but I'd definitely drink it again.

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Photo of KTCamm
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours dark crimson red, bordering on black, with edges of white foam. Bready toffe nose, some pine too. Malty toffee taste, bready hop, blended. Hearty malt taste with a flavorful hop blend.

Really, really good. Solid amber, with the right balance of malt and hop.

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KTCamm from New Jersey, Nov 22, 2012
Photo of YeastWrangler88
4.45/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass:

Apparence: beautiful dark amber color, with red hues, crystal clear, slightly brown head, maybe beige.

Aroma: smells of amber to dark malt with some earthy, grassy hops, very slightly citrusy, but I'd describe it as biscuity with some chocolate and fresh cut grass with ripe pine needles sitting atop.

Flavor: earthy notes hit my tongue first, followed by dark malts, as if I was eating slightly burnt hawaiien bread in the middle of a pine tree forest with fresh cut grass surrounding. Really, really plesent flavor. Flavors balance each other very nicely.

Mouthfeel: I would say medium body, but with a dry finish, carbonation is nice, nothing cloying in the beer, just a plesent taste that dissipates into a mellow burnt sugar flavor/feel.

Overall: this is a good one. Want a dark amber ale, but you also want an IPA? This is perfect. Well balanced, hop and malt flavor are extremely well thought out and executed very well. Drinkability is also really high, 3-5 bottles of this would not be a problem for a Friday or Saturday night session.

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Photo of Flounder57
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that has reduced to a thin layer. There is some nice lacing on the glass as the beer was drank. It is an amber copper color with great clarity and signs of bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: Citrus and grapefruit, some light fruity and bready notes too.

Taste: Tastes better than it smells. Very citrusy.

Mouthfeel: smooth, low to medium carbonation, medium bodied, some tingly bitterness, and a enjoyable beer.

Overall: Very nice beer and happy my brother brought this back for me to enjoy in Boston.

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Flounder57 from Massachusetts, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of tronester
3.89/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A reddish brown in color with a thin tan head. Strong grassy, piney, herbal aroma. Taste was a bit of dark caramel up front, followed by some big grassy, herbal flavors. Mouthfeel was good. Overall a good red ale that I would get again. Probably the hoppiest offering I have had from NB.

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tronester from Oklahoma, Nov 15, 2012
Photo of UnderPressure
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A dark reddish brown beer with off white head. Head lingers at 1/4 inch or so

Balanced aroma of hops and sweet malt

Roasted grain flavor upfront. Fruity, citrusy hops in the finish.

Medium thick mouthfeel. Pretty dry finish.

A good malty, hoppy beer with plenty of flavor and body.

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UnderPressure from South Carolina, Nov 13, 2012
Photo of Murrhey
3.62/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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

A- Finger and a half off-white color head. Medium retention, soapy lacing. Nut brown color with some cherry hues. Semi-clarity. Nice looking beer.

S- Musky, piney hops and some medium fruits. Quite inviting smell. Somewhat complex and not overpowering with hops.

T- Piney hops and earthy tones. Acidic.

M- Smooth and drinkable. Dry finish.

O- Above average. Does a good job not being too overpowering with hops.

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Murrhey from Washington, Nov 13, 2012
Photo of Quackershnoc
3.84/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle, served in a Weizen glass
Appearance: deep amber color, very pretty actually; nice white head that sticks around
Aroma: really hoppy, almost stingy; a little pine perhaps
Taste: really surprised that the hops don't dominate all the way through; a lot nut flavor up front; moves really nicely into the hops, a little woody maybe somewhere in the middle; ends with a kind of burnt/roasty flavor; the aftertaste sticks around well and is quite nice
Mouthfeel: bright carbonation at the beginning, but not overly so; it goes down very smooth; not thick or thin, just right
Overall Impression: this is a great beer, just what you want in the fall; it's a mild pale ale that goes down smooth; very attractive beer, something I'd really like to drink (and keep drinking!); the nut and the fire-roasty flavors at the beginning and the end are just right; a very worth while beer and a good one to sip with a pal; I think my favorite part is the nutty transitioning into the hoppy flavor...that's just excellent

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Quackershnoc from Michigan, Nov 13, 2012
Photo of TwelveOunces
3.97/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 Oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A- Pours dark clear amber with a one finger of a bubbly off white head. Great retention.

S- Toffee, caramel, pine, resinous hop, maybe a slight chocolate.

T- Im surprised. Drinks like a red or brown ale. A nice hop presence. There is a sharp pine and some citrus notes as well. This beer has nice bit of toffee and caramel in it. This is a like a hop driven brown ale with some amber ale notes. A nice malty full flavored brew.

M- As thick as it should be. Not too bitter. Clean and somewhat refreshing.

O- This is a great beer. Wish I bought more then just a single.

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TwelveOunces from Kentucky, Nov 13, 2012
Red Hoptober from New Belgium Brewing Company
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 812 ratings