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Hop*A*Potamus | Great River Brewery

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
86
very good
28 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
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BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Great River Brewery
Iowa, United States | website

Style: Rye Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Hop*A*Potamus is a double dark rye pale ale made with a ton of pale and six kinds of rye malt for a "full" body. This double dark rye pale ale is fiercely hopped with a Northwest blend for a stampede of flavor and aroma.

Added by mynie on 12-25-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
28
Ratings:
99
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
14.03%
 
 
Wants:
4
Gots:
8
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
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Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 99
Reviews by kojevergas:
Photo of kojevergas
3.44/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml aluminum can with interesting label art reminiscent of Diamond Knot brewing acquired in a trade with the very generous Duff27 and served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average; this is me first beer from this brewery (I think). 99 IBUs. "Double Dark Rye Pale Ale." 9% ABV confirmed.

Served straight from the fridge and side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

I'm really in the mood for a good pale ale (dark though it may be...). I loved the rye in say, Alpine Nelson so I'm excited for this.

A: Pours a luscious two finger mocha-khaki colour head of great cream, great thickness, and fantastic (8+ minute) retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a surprisingly dark, rich amber colour. Translucent. Semitransparent. Nice lacing as the head recedes. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. I'm not sure what I expected, but this is very interesting. Boy, that head is gorgeous. Soft and inviting. I can't wait to try it.

Sm: Caramel, evocative full rye grains, light rye bread, cream, amber malts, pale malts, light buried citrus, biscuit malt, and strangely executed nectary and light piney hops. It's a strangely built, yet seemingly balanced aroma. I'm not quite on board with it, but only because it's new to me. Quite grainy. An above average strength aroma. It's not unpleasant, just somewhat foreign - like somewhere between a lightly hopped amber and a black IPA. Curious. I'm intrigued. The rye notes here are surprisingly deep; I don't usually pick up on rye but I do get it here. This is one of the few beers brewed with rye that you could hand me blind and I'd bet that I actually would pick up on the rye. Though it's more hoppy than, say, a German style roggenbier. I think the combination of the hops and the grains is what has me puzzled; it's not quite seamless but it's definitely well balanced. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable.

T: Hm. I like it, but it's not easy to file into a clear category. There's definite hop flavour here, with some grassy hops, light floral hop character, and more dank light oily hops. I like the hop character overall; I'm glad I don't get the pine or nectar of the aroma. But it's still missing something. On the malty end, you've got lots of grainy character and light cereals. Rye is in there, along with touches of rye bread. Caramel is quite forward here. Light amber and biscuit malts fill out the body and give it a bit more complexity. I'm not getting any yeasty character or alcohol, which is a good thing. It's nicely creamy, too. It's got notable complexity, but I'm more impressed with the subtle interaction between the dank somewhat oily hops and the thick bready grains; they go really well together. Balance is good. The finish is heavy rye; the hops have faded by that point. It's an interesting beer. I'm not sure I've had one quite like it before. Some of the best use of rye I've experienced, to be sure. Really liking this one, but it's not bringing as much flavour or complexity to the table as it would need to to really be great. Not too bitter nor too sweet.

Mf: Chewy. Moderately thick. Good smoothness and wetness, but there's enough coarseness to let the flavours come through. Slightly overcarbonated, but there's no sharpness or bite to it. Good body and depth of flavour. Good presence on the palate. Nicely soft. I'd stop short of refreshing, but it's pleasant to drink. Love the creaminess especially. Complements the flavour profile quite well.

Dr: A welcome oddity from Great River - a brewery I intend to investigate more. ABV is quite well hidden here and it's very drinkable. I'll enjoy killing the whole point by myself. Don't expect a pale ale when you crack this one open; the rye really distances it from that designation. Still, it's not a roggenbier in the traditional sense. Not sure where to classify this one - and I think that's a good thing. Love the experimentation. I'd recommend this to friends, but I wouldn't know how to adequately explain what it is. Any fan of trying different beers would do well to give this one a spin. I owe Duff27 for the opportunity to try it.

High B-

 4,259 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of DaftPatrick
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of schoon
4.75/5  rDev +23.4%

Photo of Oboogie
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Photo of dbossman
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Reddish brown hue with an enormous cream-colored head

S: The rye and the hops not surprisingly steal the show: some grapefruit and pine and weed--more the latter of the two with the spicy slightly malty grains and rye sneaking up behind

T: Something is not quite right here; I like the rye and the piney hop resin is there too and that's good but there is a medicinal and slightly buttery flavor in the finish--not to mention the prevalent alcohol flavors that make this beer finish in a way it shouldn't

F: Sticky and oily like it should be with medium overall body

O: This is a strange beer; I love Great River and I love everything about this beer except it's taste...but that's a pretty important part--there's just something not quite right for my taste here

 771 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16 oz. can poured into a shaker pint. Thanks to GraniteSkunk for a 4 pack of this one.

Appearance - Pours a dark brown with reddish tint through the light. Not much of a head, so it actually fits in my glass. Still manages to sustain some good lacing.

Smell - I get hops, but the rye smell is dominant. Heavy rye character. The malt almost smells raw, if that makes sense. Reminds me of the smell of a brewery.

Taste - Much hoppier in the flavor than the smell. Pine and grapefruit, but it again takes a backseat to the rye flavor. Solid rye flavor all the way through. Finishes with a heavy dark malt caramel flavor that verges on chocolate. Medium bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Slick and kinda heavy. Definitely doesn't drink like a pale ale, as it is labeled. Much more a heavy brown ale with tons of rye. The bitter finish maybe lightens it a bit, but it's still a slow one.

Overall - This was previously categorized as an IPA here, which is totally wrong, no matter what the can says. This is a heavier rye beer that's hopped, not an IPA with rye. Solid rye flavor and a decent hop back, but it's not anything special.

 1,125 characters

Photo of zoolou
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of morimech
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark crimson color with two fingers of head that had good retention before settling to a thick cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left on the glass. Funny, it does not look pale. WTF were they thinking with the Double Dark Pale Ale discriptor?

Smells like 4:20 at the local high school. Dank and earthy hops dominate. Muted rye makes its appearance as well.

Very hop forward flavor. Dank and bitter is prevalent. Some rye spice and more earthyness from hops. I would of liked more rye and less hops here. Lingering bitter, dank aftertaste. No sign of the ABV.

The poorest carbonated Great River beer. Do not know what they were going for or what went wrong with the canning. Just poor life in this beer. Big bodied, bitter beer. Does not excite the palate.

Certainly not the best rye beer on the shelves. But no others are priced $6.99 for four pints either.

 876 characters

Photo of pitch31
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of ninner00
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Photo of theminutemen
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of langfot99
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of DCdevyl78
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of hoppymcgee
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of yamar68
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a copper red with a healthy cap of tan head. Slow, steady beading and good lacing. The nose is earthy with layers of citrus, like fresh squeezed tangerine all smothered in caramel. There's quite a pine bite on the tongue that transitions through rye and toasted grains. Drawn out, bitter afterburn. Overall, this beer isn't perfect but it's complex enough to keep things exciting.

 386 characters

Photo of bigbeers84
4.75/5  rDev +23.4%

Photo of bismarksays
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of Inglewood
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ironstein
5/5  rDev +29.9%

Photo of Tash2360
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

Photo of FreshHawk
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep, slightly murky garnet brown. Full, thick, large, pillowy, cake batter, off white head. Very nice retention leaving a nice sticky lace.

S - Interesting mix of fruity and citrus pine with a dark malt. A bit of a dark fruit and subtle fruitiness. A bit of a rye and earthiness as well. Hard to place exactly the style and aromas.

T - Strong pine flavor with some grapefruit/citrus. Slightly juicy flavors. There is a slight dark malt, earthy rye kind of flavor. Caramel malt and a slight sweetness.

M - Medium body with below average carbonation. Somewhat thin with a bit of a stickiness.

D - Pretty nice drinkability. Doesn't fit any style really, but there is a nice mix of dark/rye and hops. Lingering bitterness.

Notes: Interesting beer. Doesn't fit perfectly in a style for me but it is enjoyable. Mouthfeel is a little off, but it doesn't detract too much from enjoying the beer.

 897 characters

Photo of ackeeper
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ovaltine
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Rosquin
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Photo of vidguy17
4/5  rDev +3.9%

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Hop*A*Potamus from Great River Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 28 ratings.
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