Hoppy Feet | Clown Shoes

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BA SCORE
87
very good
426 Reviews
Hoppy FeetHoppy Feet
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States | website

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jlindros on 12-26-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
426
Ratings:
1,448
Avg:
3.89
pDev:
20.82%
 
 
Wants:
87
Gots:
262
For Trade:
2
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 426 | Ratings: 1,448
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think the thing that comes to mind most about this beer is that because it isn't mind-blowing, so far as the character of it goes, some might consider it pedestrian. 3 years ago, people would have committed bloody murder to try this one. With all the black ales out there now, people might "eh" this one. I think it's a pretty good black ale. Glad to finally be able to try stuff from these cats out of 12 ouncers.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A gift from Gregg Berman. Thanks a lot!

A: This brew appears a dark mahogany color, with a dense inch of light beige head which exhibits great retention and leaves plenty of lacing on the pint glass.

S: Aromas of roast, hops, and pine.

T: The beer is a combination of roast and hop flavors, with some chocolate notes in there as well. The beer tastes a little too bitter, with a slight hop astringency emerging in the back end.

M: OK feel, but a bit imbalanced in the finish.

D: An alright beer. I'm still not sold on this style. I really enjoy IPAs and roasty brews, but not sure that marrying the two is the best idea.

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Photo of jwc215
3.94/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Shannon Rose, Woodbridge, NJ:

Pours black with a tan lasting head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of chocolate, pine, coffee.

The taste is of chocolate, pine/herbal/perfume notes with coffee roast in the finish.

It has a smooth, full body.

An excellent Black Ale. Plenty hoppy, plenty roasty, and doesn't clash.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clown Shoes Hoppy Feet Black Ale, Ipswich, MA.

Hey, I've heard about this Clown Shoes business, and guess what? Now, we're getting it. Here's Hoppy Feet Black India Pale Ale (black and pale, eh?), Mercury Brewing Company, Ipswich, MA. 7% ABV.

Dark brown, just about black, beautiful creamy tan head, lace-leaving. Gorgeous brew.

Aroma: grassy hops, subsumed by rich, deep malt. Hints of cocoa, spots of coffee.

Taste: more of that on the tongue, the depth of the dark malt, with the high hops on top. Nicely roasted malt character, riddled with hop bitterness, up an down, and back of the throat. Flavor continues, never quite quits. Gets brighter and brighter, hoppier and hoppier. Stays long through the finish.

The battle continues, and a question arises. Did this style arise out of need or necessity, was it a desire to produce something great, new, & intriguing? Or did people tire of porters, and demand they get hopped up, or else? I'm still asking.

Smooth, rich and malty mashes up with leafy, green, and hoppy. Bitter much? Just enough.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Really dark brown color with mocha head. Aroma is definitely on the hoppy side with nice resiny and earthy notes, but you also get some milk chocolate and coffee. Taste starts really balanced with the hoppy notes and also chocolate and roasted malt. Finish is even more roasty and bitter with some coffee notes as well. Medium, smooth feeling body with soft carbonation. I really enjoy black IPAs and this one is really well made and tasty.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Reagan1984 for this random brew. No idea how many batches of this have been made, which means it could be anywhere from one to six months old. Served in a pint glass.

A - Pours with one finger-plus of light tan foam that dissipates slowly to a thin cap and collar. Lacing is spotty. Body is a dark brown, with some translucent red highlights perceptible when held to the light.

S - Smells like other black IPAs (or hoppy stouts) - grapefruit and floral hop notes mixed with cocoa, caramel, and roasted malts. You can tell this isn't super-fresh, but the hop presence is still assertive.

T - Sweet Jeebus! This is very bitter, and eerily reminiscent of Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous. The taste is aggressive grapefruit and pine hoppiness, mixed with dark roasted malt and bitter chocolate. Tastes nowhere as sweet as it smells, to its detriment unfortunately. Bitterness lingers and builds throughout.

M - Mouthfeel is a refreshing medium-light, which isn't out of place at 7%. Finishes slightly dry, with some tooth-coating resins. It's a tad too carbonated for my liking, but never verges on harsh.

D - Yikes! The bitterness is oppressive. Suffers from the same problems as Stone XII/Sublimely Self-Righteous, even though this is a little lighter in alcohol and body. Palate wrecking, but not enjoyable enough to warrant it. I will finish the bomber, but it's going to take me a while.

I'm starting to come to the conclusion that Black IPAs just aren't my thing. This combination of flavors somehow works better when it comes from aggressively dry-hopping a stout, rather than adding black malt to an IPA recipe - I think because there are less bittering hops and alpha acids. I like bitterness as much as the next hophead, but in conjunction with bitter dark chocolate it gets a little tiresome.

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Photo of tdm168
4.02/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours black with an inch of brown, dense, foamy head that has decent retention. The nose is chocolaty, piny, and has some faint citrusy notes. The flavor is similar to the nose. Up front it's chocolaty and smooth with faint roasted malt and coffee notes followed by a slightly citrusy, piny bitterness that lingers well after the swallow. The mouthfeel is a bit thin but smooth. It has light carbonation and finishes dry.

This is an alright black IPA, but I prefer the 1.5 version that they put out. The difference is the malt character and the body. In the amped up 1.5 version, the body is fuller and the malt character is far richer and smoother. This is still a good beer just thin and not as bold.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a tumbler. A soupy but very large gushing and clumpy head of light tan is formed. Body is fair chestnut and red.

Nose is ripped dark grain and husky with light coffee, smells more like a porter but tasty.

Taste is over carbonated wit a real burnt grain. Very dry roast and a mild gas. Roast roast and more roast. Extreme tasting char and burnt. Mild bitter hop on the finish as well.

Overall an interesting beer, but not what I look for in this style.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by the other Matt, a gift from the brewer, thanks guys.

Beer is dark black and opaque with a thick head of small off white bubbles that recedes quickly leaving some lacing on the glass. Carbonation is a mystery on this one.

The aroma is quite piny in the hop department with some mild roast, I'm now thinking this is going to be one of the bittered BIPAs.

Well...this beer is decently bitter with both roast and hops, like a simcoe kind of bitterness with some midpalate lead ins on the road to more hoppiness. The forward is a little thin with some sweetness. There is too much happening the back half of the beer, I think ultimately that it is OK but there are better pairings with roastiness and hop bitterness than these malts / hops make.

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Photo of Billolick
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber, $7.99 @ Yankee spirits in Sturbridge, Ma.

No freshness info to be had.

Pours black, mocha head that lifts and stays, leaves better then average high sheeting and wild lacing.

Dark malts, dark chocolate and citrus in the nose.

Flavorful offering. Black malts, more dark chocolate, lite coffee, super dry with citric hops/grapefruit crashing the party. Very nice, complex, bold and well worth seeking out and enjoying.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a dark brown-to-black coloring with a frothy, foamy, big bubbled, light tan head that starts around an inch and slowly settles into a surface coating. Great cling along the glass. Aromas of roast and bitter coffee with an overlay of resin and piney hops, giving a pretty dynamic and layered nose. Flavors are heavily roasted, with a campfire char and smoke forward, bitter dark roasted coffee in the backbone, and a spiced and resiny hops presence that builds at the end of the palate. The aftertaste ends up being a balance of roast and smoke with bitter hops. Light, crisp body with a dry, clean, crisp finish. The beer does leave a slightly smoked linger as you continue to drink. Decent beer.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After trying the first bottle of Hoppy feet I tried a second one, provided by the good people of Mercury Brwing and it was much better. The color was an opaque rich with off-white head that laced. The aroma was roast and with slight bitter citrus. The taste was a good roasty malt which a bitter grapefruit that provides the nice after taste. The mouthfeel was a medium body with good carbontaion. Overall it is not the best Black IPA i ever had, but it was definitely decent and worth a taste.

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Photo of WesWes
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a dark brown/black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, bitter, black malt scent along with a very nice citrus hop nose. It's not a complex malt aroma and the hops really shine through. The taste is good as well. It has a very bitter hop flavor that works well with the dry, black malts. It goes down smooth with loads of hops that resinate in the finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking black IPA. It has excellent hop character and a solid malt base.

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Photo of tempest
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a glass at Deep Ellum along with some tasty Parmesan fries. This is a pretty decent take on the style. The malt background is a bit more like a Irish dry stout than anything with its dry and bitter roasted character. The hops are predominantly citrusy and amplifies the dry character. Unfortunately, the hops and malt blend instead layering flavor.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at the Great Lost Bear in Portland, ME

I suspect this is their best beer at Clown Shoes. But of course I don't know that, this is my first one. If they're all this good, then this is quite the brewery.

Pours...well, black. Not thick, there are some hints of ruby and mahogany. 1 finger white head. Looks good. Delishhh

Somewhat chaotic aroma. Sometimes the roasted malt comes out, sometimes the piney hops. It's a nice blend whatever comes forth.

Dark, toasted bread backbone. Some chocolate and molasses. But the hops dominate here. Pine and earthy, some zesty spice, but mostly the 'robust' hops. Bitter? Yeups. Nice. It sorta depends on what you're thinking about that determines which flavors come out more; malt, some smoke, chocolate, pine, raisin, leather, and/or zest. me like

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Photo of Tone
3.46/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black color. 1/4 inch head of an off-tan color. Good retention and decent lacing. Smells of citrus hops, hint of pine, sweet malt, hint of roasted malt, hint of spice, and a hint of sugar. Fits the style of an American Black Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. There is a strong bitterness and slight dryness. Tastes of hops, roasted malt, hint of sweet malt, slight citrus, slight grass, and an odd grass/spice flavor that is very sharp. Overall, the bitterness is too strong and the accompanying flavors are muted or overshadowed.

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Photo of Gavage
4.06/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a chestnut brown color with a two finger head that lasts a long time. Thick lacing develops during the session.

Smell: dark chocolate, roasted malts, and some earthy pine comes through to the nose.

Taste: big roasted and bitter chocolate flavors are up front. Earthy notes, some tartness from citrusy hops, ad a hint of alcohol come through. Bitterness is bold and sharp.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp to start, less crisp and dry at the finish. Long lasting aftertaste here.

Overall: a very hoppy black IPA that hits the spot. A slow sipping beer, the bomber will last you nicely in a session.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark brown color with red highlights and a tan head. The aroma is full of piney hops, as well as a good dose of chocolate and roasted malt. The flavor is very similar to the aroma. I get a lot of bitter chocolate and burnt malt notes, with some pine from the hops also mixed in. The bitterness is fairly low. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of DoubleJ
2.9/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Bottled on 4/29, so you know it's still good. From a 12 ounce bottle, on to the beer:

Like the name, this beer is black bodied with two fingers thick of head. The aroma has the standard roasted malt component, also astringent malt, and...nail polish remover? A wee bit of hops make their mark as well, but it's the nail polish remover which concerns me.

Taste; nail polish remover first thing. Talk about a mood dampener. It adds an unpleasant bitterness to what looks like an otherwise good beer. The malt has a bittersweet taste, then it seems to go semi-sweet. A little bit of hops and resin and ending with a dry finish. The beer is medium bodied and soft with a texture which is almost creamy.

What a tease. Hoppy Feet has so much promise if it weren't for that off-note. Next time, no quality control problems please.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.81/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Stone Brewery flute glass. Pours a very dark brown with mahogany tint, half finger light brown head with good retention and light lacing. Rich aroma of chocolate, coffee and dark toasted malt. Flavor of toasted malt, charred coffee, mild dark chocolate, grassy hops. Long lingering dark malt and grassy hop finish. Medium bodied with light creaminess. A nice hoppy CDA with good char notes of coffee and malt. Malt body is slightly light to support the coffee and hop bitterness, making the finish a bit dry and less balanced, but still an enjoyable black ale that hits all the right notes.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap at Blue Dog

Very dark red with some brown and black mixed in as well, looks kinda sludgy. Ring around the glass. Semi slight dots of lace, nothing extraordinary. Smell is piney, grapefruit that's sharp, semi boozy even with the low ABV, malts are in the forefront. Taste is a black IPA alright, sharp taste of grapefruit and oily hops, resinous. Some malt in the back, not terribly complex. Medium bodied, highly carbed, kinda prickly on the tounge there, bitterness is noted. I kinda liked this stuff, it did not blow me away, but I will look for it again, maybe.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.91/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to portia99 for this brew.

22 oz. Bomber

Pours a very nice blackish color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy off-white head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing behind. The nose is roasted malts, hops, caramel, chocolate. The taste is malty, with some nice roasted notes, nice little hop note, slight licorice. Medium Body, with a nice dry/bitter finish. This is a very nice brew, glad to have had a chance to try it.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.4/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours black wiith a small off-white head, some lace, fair head retention.

S: Piney hops, some white grape fruit with a lot of roasted malt.

T: Dark chocolate and pine, very hoppy with lemon and other citrus zest. Definitely has a green streak.

M: Medium-bodied, a tad acrid, with crisp carbonation, refreshing at points.

O: A fair black ale, it's to style, but a little clashing in flavours. An OK pickup if you like the style.

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Photo of biegaman
4.47/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Despite its name, Clown Shoes Hoppy Feet is no laughing matter: its body is black and even against bright backlight will concede little highlighting. It may be hoppier than some IPAs but it definitely don't look like many! Its head is like a sponge and leaves a spattering of lace that looks as though someone stuck a pin in a balloon that was filled with glue.

It still takes some getting used to seeing such dark, effectively black beers brimming with such piny, fruity hoppiness, despite that so many examples of the style (which goes by a dozen different names) now abound. Central to all of them, however, is the plump juicy fruitiness of American "C" hops, like the kind that flourish in this one.

And while white and red grapefruit and papaya are indeed plentiful, the beer has the milky chocolate and mocha qualities of a good American porter. Roasted (but not too roasted) malts provide a coffee-and-cream backdrop for all the herbal resins, citrus zest and weedy pineyness. It tastes like cocoa sweetened with mint and pine serum in lieu of milk.

The beer finishes on such a scathing bitter note, it's as if the palate is being punished for peeing on the rug or something. Fortunately, that bitterness carries with it a piny, citrusy, minty quality that is welcome on my palate any time. And besides, a hazelnut-biscotti taste replaces it soon enough. This bomber could be twice the size and I'd still finish it.

To make a long story short, Hoppy Feet has the minty, piny, citrusy hoppiness of an American IPA and all the bold, roasty, bittersweet chocolaty flavours of an American porter - and is perhaps the best example of the style I've come across. It's character and quality are both telling about the mentality of this new, up-and-coming brewery. Recommended.

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Photo of tone77
3.59/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a black color with a 1 inch head. Smell is of roasted malts, a bit of sweetness. Taste is well balanced malts and hops, some bitterness, a bit of smoke. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a solid beer.

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Hoppy Feet from Clown Shoes
87 out of 100 based on 426 ratings.
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