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Hoptologist DIPA | Knee Deep Brewing Company

very good
172 Reviews
Hoptologist DIPAHoptologist DIPA

Brewed by:
Knee Deep Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
An American Double India Pale Ale that packs a punch when it comes to hops. The aroma and flavors will give you citrus and pine with a slight malt sweetness that finishes dry.

Added by kevanb on 12-03-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 172 | Ratings: 985
Photo of smcolw
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The liquid is dirty gold and quite cloudy. Fluffy head that initially leaves a blanket of lace. Later sips provide small spots.

There's a bit of a cabbage smell to this beer. I also detect freshly mowed field of weeds, perhaps reminiscent of the aroma of thistle. Overall, it's attractive but it's also very unusual. In the background, I pick up melted butter and pine needles. Extremely complex.

Starts off creamy with a fully round base pale malt taste. The hop comes quickly and sharply, like a spike on the tongue. The full force of the bite comes in the swallow and leaves the palate dry bitter in the aftertaste. The linger hop-pellet taste lingers longer than any beer I think I've ever had. Full Bodied (creamy) but with enough carbonation to give it balance. This starts soft and ends extreme.

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Photo of raiderob
3.99/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a bomber into pint glass.dirty foamy head that fades leaving nice lingering lacing.murky amber like color.tounge sucking finish that goes down nicely.Prost!

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Photo of ABhatia
4.24/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

the beer was good! The hoppiness was excellent and nicely balanced. Nice floral/citra smell..much better than I expected. enjoyed till the last sip...

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Orangey, Bitter, Pine, Warming

This is a wallop of a Double IPA, taste buds dance with the 102 IBUs and the think blanketing of hop flavor while the nose and palate both take on controlled chaos of alcohol and an orange grove that is infested with pine trees. A serious blend of hops ... Cascade, Citra, Columbus, Magnum and Hersbrucker hit hard and stay long. This is what the Double IPA style is all about.

STYLE: American Double IPA | ABV: 9.0% | AVAILABILITY: Year-round

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine issue #97 (FEB 2015)

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Photo of bhyndthebottle
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice Amber color with a head that lasts. A nice citrusy and piney nose with a flavor that matches. Hoppy, dry finish. A nice DIPA, but a little muddled on the finish. I will buy again, but more interested in some of the other ones from this brewery.

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Photo of scotorum
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75


We just started getting this California brewery's products distributed in our state. They have several IPAs and DIPAs, this being one of them.

Bottled 6/22/15. Nearly two months old, not great.

a: Nearly clear orange with a finger thick white head which receded to blobby surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Slightly funky pine resin

t: Follows the nose, moderate hop bite accompanying. Mainly dry finish. High ABV well covered, although some throat burn develops.

m: Medium, good body and high carbonation tingle.

o: A good, refreshing West Coast style DIPA, reminiscent a Stone version or two, but not as enjoyably flavorful as some. Perhaps its age has something to do with that. However, at the pricepoint of $9 I would definitely go for something more readily available and reasonably priced, such as SN's Hoptimum, New Holland's Imperial Hatter or Lagunitas Sucks.

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Photo of russpowell
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had to buy this based on the label!

Pours a hazed amber with a pinky of pearl colored head.

S: Grassy & catty, woody notes as well. Good head retention & below average lacing

T: Follows the nose, dryness & a little lemon grass up front. Grassy & cattiness, so dry with maltyness & pears as this warms, a little peach & pineapple. Finishes dry, weedy, with a little grapefruit & woodyness

MF: Medium body & moderate carbonation, decent balance

Nice effort, a little too catty for me, worth a go

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Photo of DaveBar
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Purchased at Champegne's outside Detroit for $7.00 for a 22oz bomber. Served at 5deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a 2" high white head that lasts forever. Amazing how long the creamy had hangs around. Dark gold color and unfiltered.

S- Lots of hops here. Sickly sweet

T- Nice DIPA. Mellow but has bite. Not a big hop bomb but it has a nice IBU.

M- Dry and tart. Creamy head though

O- Very good brew. Enjoyed now and in time to come.

Food Pairing

This nice brew went well with...... Smoked salmon.


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Photo of biegaman
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The forecast for Hoptologist looks green - even if the beer itself is golden. Looks are deceiving - just because there aren't melon skins, grapefruit peels and pine needles floating around in it doesn't mean it doesn't taste like there are. What isn't misleading is the super foamy, well sustained head; it's a true indication of a well constructed beer.

The aroma is so jammed with herbal, leafy notes I wouldn't be surprised to wake up tomorrow to find vines growing out of my nose. It's a considerably crude hoppiness that shares a pungency similar to its closest relative (marijuana) but is tempered with juicy, tropical fruit flavours as well. It smells as though it were grown on a farm or in a greenhouse.

Is my face breaking out into a green rash? Each sip coats the tastebuds in an emulsion of citrus peels, grass clippings and a tree bark note with a peppery, root-like bitterness. I bet it was even more buzzing two months ago at the time of bottling; the toffee and toast qualities of the malts are fairly noticeable.

All those hoppy flavours inexplicably hide a lot the alcohol (9%) and bitterness (100+ IBU). Indeed, this comes across as more balanced and harmonious than other offerings in its weight class. A Double IPA aught to have more heft and punch then a standard one but the best ones also drink just as effortlessly - this is a big beer that doesn't require small sips.

It's apparent Hoptologist completed his doctorate in lupulin, with a minor in drinkability. Double IPAs have been a staple in the California microbrewery repertoire for some time now and that state's brewers have only gotten better and better at it. And Knee Deep in particular, as evidenced by Hoptologist and their ten or so other IPAs, have really pinned hops down to a science.

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Photo of kscaldef
3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Similar to the Breaking Bud, but amped up. Picks up a slight sweetness when it first hits your tongue, but that's quickly overwhelmed by aggressive bitterness. Again, not my style.

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Photo of -Rick
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L: an amber/orange color, with some nice white lacing
S: danky hops, pine
T: malty upfront, with some sweetness to it. More malt than tropic hop profile
F: some what thick, low carbonation
O: a solid offering. Not my favorite KD, but still quality

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.29/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from ABV. Bottled on 26 June.

A clear burnished copper with a dense, off white head with excellent retention and lacing, this looks great! The nose is dominated by dank, dank hops. Pungent pine, grapefruit, a touch of garlic, aggressive grapefruit peel, a little weed, this beer is dominated by the hops. The palate opens with a prominent bitterness, resiny, dank, bitter and clean with flavors of pine, candied grapefruit, sine fruit, floral honey as well as some sugar, and caramel. The mid palate has juicy hop bitterness before a long, creamy bitter finish with some sweetness. Dank pine, weed and simple malt are present. The creamy palate and moderate carbonation work really well together here. Highly recommended.

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Photo of santomark
4.75/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is a great beer when fresh. With any IPA/DIPA, freshness is key. This had the medium to heavy body, nice malt backbone, a tad of sweetness from the ABV, and just a burst of citrus in the back. Knee Deep, keep doing what you're doing. These guys need a gimmick beer that is like super rare to find. They'll be right up there with the best.

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Photo of Dope
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

5/11/15 Bottling date. Just hit shelves and almost two months old, nice.

A: Clear light orange pour with a big tall frothy light tan head. Good head retention and very nice lacing.

S: Spicy pine aroma with a side of orange peel. Light hint of sweet tropical fruit?

T: Very spicy. Super spicy pine. Loads of it. Herbal too. Maybe a hint of orange peel but it's pretty much all herbal, spicy piney flavors. Sting of bitterness in the finish with almost a salty taste. Spicy, salty, almost (black) peppery finish and aftertaste.

M: Fairly heavy, bitter and spicy.

O: Huh. Not sure what to say about this one. Loads of spicy pine and salty/black peppery flavors. The entire back half of the beer tastes like salt and pepper. It's not horrible but very unusual and unexpected.

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Photo of mattcrill
4.16/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Aroma: Perfume-like orange blossom with a bit of pine and lemon notes. Clean fermentation character. Very citrus driven while smelling alcoholic.

Appearance: Hazy amber pour with golden edging. Low white head that retains well. Effervescence noted in the glass.

Flavor: Rich candied orange flavors up front with burnt sugar undertones. Firm earthy bitterness provides a solid counterpoint. Balance is firmly to the bitterness. Finish is clean and dry. Aftertaste lingers with bitterness on the back of the palate.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Slightly oily with a touch of heat. No creaminess or astringency.

Overall impression: A big, boozy DIPA. Careful with this one but very enjoyable.

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Photo of davelag
4.82/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at The Yardhouse.
Hard to believe is 9%. Amazing piney/citrusy fragrance: Knee Deep just tweaked a perfect balance of hops and malt. The taste follows the aroma: Really enjoyed this beer from start to finish.
I would definitely try this in bottle format.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on date of 03/19/15

Appearance - Pours clear and golden in color with a white, finger width head. Good retention, breaking down to a thin film of suds across the surface. Lacing is spotty to streaky with good stick.

Smell - Mellow pine dank with a touch of citrus.

Taste - Follows the nose. Flavorful, but mellow pine with a lesser notes of orange. Touches of stonefruit pit nuttiness. Mild citrus pith bitterness in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Solid medium body with moderate carbonation. Smooth going down before a dry finish.

Overall - Not huge into pine-forward IPA's, yet this one brought a nice, easy approach. Still, not quite my cup of tea, so despite the high score, it's unlikely I'd buy again.

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Photo of Dynobolt
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Had this one sitting in my fridge and finally cracked it open. Date on bottle was 8/22/14. 9 months later and here's my score: it still was drinkable to me, the taste was awesome, I love the hops and the sweetness it packs, the bitterness is decent, for the 9% it goes down pretty smooth and I can appreciate that. I'll buy it again to try a fresher one.

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Photo of 28cammies
4.75/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Freakin AWESOME! This DIPA packs the hoppy punch I crave! watch out, it's 9% ABV! Nice light amber color, medium head, not sweet, very drinkable! Fantastic!

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Photo of Big_V
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I think if I blind tasted this next to Sucks, I wouldn't tell the difference. This was very good. On the piney side versus juicy. Medium carbonation and mouthfil. If I see this again I will def purchase.

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Photo of MonkeyBread
4.19/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First Knee Deep brewing beer for me, quite excited. Bottle has a bottled on stamp in December 2014. Getting towards the 3-4 month mark, which is a little concerning but this being a big DIPA I hope the freshness is not much of an issue. Poured from bomber into a tulip glass.

Look: really dark coloring for this style. Brown, bit of ruby, pours a nice thin white head that dissipates quickly. Must be a fairly interesting malt bill to provide this coloring.

Smell: big blast of C hops and Simcoe. Smell is not fruity or citrusy, this is the piney, resinous, grass and forest variety. There's a hint of a pleasant onion flavoring as well. Usually with a less fresh beer the smell goes first, fantastic to see this still has an awesome smell. Would love to see how much stronger it is fresh.

Taste: similar to the smell, on the front is an excellent hop medley of flavors: floral, pine, herbs, serious dankness. This is balanced by a hefty malt backbone bringing forth a bit of caramel and sweetness. The beer ends with a smooth, dry, slightly bitter finish. Really a great combination of flavors, this is one I am enjoying sipping and taking my time.

Feel: balanced, smooth mouth feel. Not overly thick or thin. Just in the middle of the spectrum nicely.

Overall: really enjoyed this big beer. It is loaded up with a plethora of hops but balanced by a nice malt sweetness to not be too bitter. I don't know the hops used, but definitely feels like a mixture of centennial, Simcoe, cascade and maybe chinook. This is not a juicy, fruity, citrusy IPA for those that like that style. This is on the piney end. Best comparisons I can make would be if you upped Two Hearted to a DIPA or it is somewhat comparable to Pliny the Elder.

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Photo of sjones5045
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

DE bar 2/28/15

Bottle date 8/12/14 so I can't give a fair rating. A little on the malt smell and taste so I think it's on the downside of its life. However it has good promise. The citrus still comes through enough to make me want to try again.

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Photo of timontheroad
4.19/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bottle at the brewery - dated 2/19, super fresh!
Appearance: Poured clear, slightly orange color. Two finger thick white head, very good retention and lacing.
Smell: Nice fruity, piney and grassy aromas. Not much malt smell, the hops are really dominant in this one.
Taste: Lots of citrus, some piney flavors, slight onion flavor as well. Got some nice sweetness on the finish.
Mouthfeel: Nice creamy feel, lingers very well.
Overall: Damn this is one tasty beer. Sure wish we could get this in Colorado!

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Photo of FLima
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber hazy color with a thick head with short retention.
Aroma with notes of grapefruit, pine, caramels and passion fruit.
Citrusy flavor with notes of grapefruit, tea leaves, pine, resin, grass, caramel malt and candied sugar. Dry aftertaste with a long bitterness.
Bordering medium body with appropriate carbonation. Slightly acid. Alcohol of 9% abv positively contributes to its flavor.
Very nice citrusy DIPA, it does not feel heavy and it has a good balance of citrus-herbal and pine (ps. tons of it).

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Photo of CTFalcon
2.42/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 1.75

I had always heard people describe beers as onion and garlic flavors, never tasted those myself in a beer. This changed that in a major way. Look and feel are pleasant but the nose and taste are straight garlic and onions. First drain pour in a while.

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Hoptologist DIPA from Knee Deep Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 172 ratings.
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