Hoptopia | Hermitage Brewing

53 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Hermitage Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by pixieskid on 08-18-2010

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Reviews: 53 | Ratings: 129
Photo of gfthree7
1.12/5  rDev -62.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

My buddy and I attempted to split a 22oz bomber of Hermitage Hoptopia and it was quite honestly the worst beer I've ever had. We both dumped it after a couple of sips.

This tastes and smells of rotten V8 vegetable juice. Even worse - we tried to drink this between bombers of Left Coast Hop Juice and Karl Strauss Double Barrel IPA, and both of those are great.

My buddy said he's had one previously and it was good, but this was so bad it was almost criminal. It's not beer and it's sure as hell not an IPA.

I had read some less-than-stellar reviews on BA after purchasing but I never dreamed a beer could be this bad! This goes way beyond Bud Light/Ice level bad. Horrific!

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Photo of dmsohyea
1.47/5  rDev -51.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Sampled 2/17/11, Purchased at BevMo, $3.50

This beer was probably about 2-3 months old at time of taste, no bottling date.

A: Dark reddish gold with less than one finger pearl white head. A bit darker than an average double IPA.

S: The smells doesn't resemble anything hoppy, more malt and bread than anything. Not what I would expect from a DIPA. Most barleywines would have a better scent.

T: Embarrassingly bad. Some notes of toasted malt, grape, bread, and oats. By these flavors, I really should say, it tastes like fermented cardboard. Not pleasant and very astringent.

M: Not the worst, by any means, but boozy and medium bodied with moderate carbonation. The alcohol taste and finish are very evident. A huge strikeout considering other options.

D: As an IPA and DIPA lover, this beer is not something I would ever drink again. I'm struggling through my first glass of the 22oz bomber. The rest of this bottle is going down the drain. I really hate to rip on someone's work, but this one just isn't for me.

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
1.49/5  rDev -50.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Pours a honey golden color. Thin white head. Decent lacing. Sort of hazy.

Aroma smells super malty sweet. Sort of citric hops. Needs more hop aroma and I'm worried about the sweetness

Yup. Tastes as it smells. Super malty sweet. Not very hoppy. Tastes like a sweet Mexican candy I had once. Not very good.

Mouthfeel is too thick.

Overall not a very good beer. Mad I wasted my money. Should have done my research. Probably gunna drain pour.

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Photo of TylerJones62
1.52/5  rDev -49.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

So I dont quite know where to start with this one. I really did not enjoy this beer nor did I know where they were trying to go with it.

It poured like a normal IPA, somewhat clear orange/amber color. As I was pouring, I was catching wiffs of what I can only describe as 409 cleaner. The taste was very similar to the smell except now there was a mix of 409 cleaner and pine. I would really like to say something good about this beer but I just cant do it. Not very drinkable in my opinion.

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Photo of schuey1010
1.52/5  rDev -49.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Don't really know what to say about this one that has not been previously been stated. My sister tried to punish me with a glass of this on her birthday.

Had never heard of it or seen it. Now I understand why. It smelled bad, and tasted even worse. One sip was all I needed to know it wasn't yummy. It had a smokey, maybe burnt taste to it. No real hop profile that I noticed.

Just an overall weak example of what I think they were going for.

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Photo of joshuasamantha
1.76/5  rDev -41.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Wow! This was a bad one everybody...was on the discount shelf for a reason. Poured in up had a drink and it wasn't up to par at all. Honestly, I thought it was a bad batch of beer so I wrote the brewmaster to tell him (If it was bad, I didn't want them selling that stuff for a myriad of reasons). Obviously he was apologetic and offered a free tasting and brewery tour if I could make it up the road. So, although they were very polite and remorseful, I wouldn't grab this one if you were looking to try something new.

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Photo of djmichaelk
1.78/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

22oz bomber into a perfect pint. Been waiting for this to be added. Review from notes.

A - Hazy orangey-yellow, with a slim one-finger head that recedes to a thin ring around the edge of the glass. Patchy lacing as it goes down.

S - Very sweet for a DIPA, with notes of caramelized sugar and cough syrup. Not much in the way of hop character at all, which is just odd for the style.

T - Wow, this is just not very good. The sweetness is very evident here, clobbering everything else. That cough syrup note is something that I just can't get past. Bitter, but without the hop pleasantness that I'm expecting. Long, dry, alcoholic finish. Ugh.

M - Thin but velvety, with low carbonation. It would be reasonably pleasant but for the oily slickness in the finish.

D - It's a struggle to get through this bomber. It only gets worse as it warms up. This might very well be my first drainpour. Hopefully if I can get through a bit more the alcohol will make me forget.

O - What a colossal letdown. Cheap, local, and readily available made me hopeful, but this was worse that I could've imagined. I can only hope that I got a bad bottle, but this didn't show signs of infection, instead it seems to just be a poor recipe. Scratch what I said in the D, this just got poured. Couldn't finish it.

Like Ale of the Hermit, I'm embarrassed to have sent this out to a poor unsuspecting BA as an extra before trying it. Bevmo has stacks of both beers, just waiting for unknowing suckers to pick them up.

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Photo of inlimbo77
1.86/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured into DFH pint glass. No bottle date is listed on this bomber bottle.

A: Color is clear orange with 1/2 finger white head that disappears very quickly. OK carbonation with tiny bubbles. Some lacing is on the glass, but not tons.

S: This beer smells bad. Stale? Too much malt? It's weird for a West Coast DIPA not to have nice hop aroma. Not a good start....

T: Even worse than the smell. Is this beer oxidized? Stale? Something is wrong with this brew. It tastes smokey even. There is malt obviously but I don't get any hop character. Tastes like burning wood, literally.

M: Coats the mouth....I think I am still tasting this hellish brew. Not good.

O: Probably one of the worst beers that I have ever drank and reviewed. I have seen some similar posts and agreed with all the statements. One and done for sure.

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Photo of jfh
1.96/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

22 oz bottle purchase at Bev Mo in Sacramento, with many other bottles. Hadn't heard of Hermitage, but it's fairly local. Seeing the other reviews, the only thing new I can add is that the cough syrup/excessively pine bark/grapefruit hop character hit the back of the roof of your mouth after you swallow. It's a bad flavor and comes out of a not that bad initial mouth feel and taste. The beer looks good, clear, amber; I like a bit lower carbonation. But my wife and I split the 22oz bottle and the drain got 16 ozs of it. Racer 5 cleansed our palates.

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Photo of monkeylovebeer
1.99/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

After the disappointing performance of Hermitage's double hefeweisen, I was a little skeptical about Hoptopia, the corresponding IPA in the San Jose brewery's recent "double" series. Upon first pour, everything seemed on track for a decent, hoppy experience: a nice straight-up golden color with a tight, sizable head, which, after some decent retention, leaves some lace, but not enough for your glass to be mistaken for your great auntie's parlor.

The pine/grapefruit nose is present, but not as hop-forward as I expected, and it's paired with something else, either I'm sensing the alcohol, or this beer has spent some time in or around a Naugahyde couch. There is a strange polyvinyl ester leaching from somewhere and it throws off the decent malt backbone of this beer.

For a double IPA, I'm just not getting smacked silly with hoppy goodness, which is exactly what I look for from this style. The finish has an odd, lingering note of slightly rancid butter.

With so many better (read: friggin' amazing) double IPAs--i.e. Pliny the Elder, Pliny the Elder, Ruination, Maximus, Moylander, Steelhead Double IPA, yes, even Hop Stoopid, etc., ad nauseam--on the market right now, I don't think I'll be making the trip out to Hoptopia again anytime soon.

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Photo of bargerking
2.18/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

You get what you pay for....

Poured into a snifter.

Pours a medium viscous dark copper amber color. Eggshell head with cloudy cluster clump retention. Soapy sticky lace. Smells like this is a little old. The hops are way subdued. There is a some pine/grapefruit scents but everything is muted. Initial contact on lips is sweet that leads to an uneventful mouthfull. Swallow gets thin and bitters with an unwanted nutty resiny finish on the backend.
Only spent $3.50 on this at Bevmo and it was worth a try I guess. Something keeps telling me this batch is pretty old though. Even if it was fresh it doesn't deserve a title like Hoptopia...

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Photo of flexabull
2.2/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

From notes.

Pours a dull orange color with a very faint head.

Nose smells odd, some funk, with a mixture of spices I can't pin down, also some earthiness and grapefruits.

Taste starts out dry, then gets sweet, with some diacetyl butteriness. There are some funky and sour notes that don't belong here, while the finish has a creamy and grapefruit like note. Hop flavors are barely present.

Mouthfeel is thin, but at least smooth.

This is barely drinkable, (Bad bottle?) because this tastes nothing like a Double IPA. I tried to choke it down, but the drain got to drink half of it, sorry drain.

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Photo of SDBestBeerCity
2.24/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Recommended by guy at BevMo who is usually pretty good, but not this time.

Nice appearance and pours nicely.

Something odd about smell that is different from most double IPA's, almost a spicy smell, like a winter brew.

Initial taste OK, but strange aftertaste.

Finished the first glass but poured out the rest of the 22 oz bottle onto a potted plant.

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Photo of SDtastentune
2.51/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Deep yellow amber brown/tan'ish with hardly any head or lace.

S - Fruit and hops, possibly more apricot or ?

T - I usually like double IPA's but something is off here...wierd apricot/metal/hops taste. Not impressed for an IPA kinda unbalanced.

M - Pretty good, higher carbonation but not balanced.

D - Average to kinda weird, so I am not liking this one too much. Has a unbalanced overall thing going on, too much fruit taste or something I cant describe... But it was a cheaper DIPA ($3.50 at bevmo.)

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Photo of jpwiii
2.58/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured into a Surly pint glass.

A - Promising appearance. Stable 2 fingers of head and in the cave like light of my living room, the color is a copper orange.

S - There is a smell of candied grapefruit, bubble gum???, heavy malt. There is something synthetic about the aroma of this beer.

T - Moderate bitterness. This beer tastes smoky. It took me a while to put my finger on it, but this beer tastes like Bacon Jelly Beans. It has an odd, smoky, synthetic/engineered flavor. It's not great, it's almost intriguingly bad.

M - May be the best thing about this beer. A little thin, but fine carbonation.

D - I keep drinking this hoping that I'm wrong, but I'm half way through it and I keep getting the same thing.

This was an odd beer. Was it terrible...No. Was it a DIPA...No. But if you like Bacon flavored jelly beans, you'll like this beer.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
2.63/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

22-oz. bomber into a pint glass at my house on Oct. 5, 2012 (purchased at BevMo in La Mesa (San Diego, Calif.) for $3.99 (with card) on Oct. 5, 2012). Honey caramel with just over two fingers of thick, frothy, white head. Very good retention on the sides and the top.

Smelled hops right out of the gate. Got some citrus (lime heavy), cascade and some spice. Maybe Columbus, too? (I struggle at times distinguishing between types of hops). A little bit of lemon butter in there late.

Taste wasn’t too much like the smell, unfortunately. Got caramel, very bitter hops (lemon/lime?) and rubbing alcohol. Very oft-putting. Reminded me of a homeless guy’s Manzanita Chaotic.

Medium body. Creamy texture. Average carbonation. Long, astringent, bitter finish.

Smell could’ve been a higher rating, but overall this was just not good. My overall rating of a 2.5 (Beer Advocate) or 8.0 (Rate Beer) may be way too high.

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Photo of zeff80
2.68/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Poured out a clear, copper color with a one-finger, fluffy, off-white foam. It left thin rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of sweet maltiness. Boozy notes, too.

T - It tasted overly sweet with toffee and caramel flavors. Some piney bitterness.

M - It was crisp and sharp but a little sticky. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is not a great DIPA. Messy and unbalanced.

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Photo of EdTheEdge
2.68/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle 22oz poured into a pint glass.

A - opaque pale golden yellow with a thin pure white head of about an inch and a half which doesn't last long but leaves a decent amount of lacing.

S - Pine, citrus and licorice

T - Licorice and Pine. Not a very hoppy beer which defies it's name.

M - Not overly carbonated and the taste of licorice lingers a bit too long.

O - I am always looking for something different to try. This label caught my eye. But I don't think I am really really enjoying this beer as I am drinking it for this review. Everytime I take a swig I like it but the aftertaste lingers and it tastes of licorice.

While I am glad I tried this beer I will most probably never purchase it again.

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Photo of Hopheadjnr
2.73/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

First review ever...

A...Pours a clear, golden color with an excellent frothy white two finger head

S...Has a nice nose to it. Balanced, slightly citrus forward aroma

T...Pretty disappointing. Hops are barely there. For an Imperial ipa seems like there is mostly a malty sweetness with a subtle bitterness on the finish. Not quite fitting its name.

M...First half of beer had a pretty nice feel with small bubbles. Champagne like carbonation. About half way through seemed to turn into a flat beer.lack of carbonation changed the feel quite a bit.

O... overall, great looking beer with nice lacing. Looked and smelled like a winner. After finishing the 22oz bottle, I would not buy this again. There are far better main line big beers that fit better into the ipa catagory. I will try any ipa once, this one will not get a second chance.

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Photo of brewandbbq
2.76/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle.
Pours clear copper with a whisp of white on the surface and some dotted lacework.

Aromatics lead off with sweet malt, mild hops, and wet paper. A bit minerally with a hint of pine. Pretty weak and old for a IIPA.

Medium bodied with a sticky, slightly syrupy mouthfeel.

Malt-forward on the palate with a brown sugar edge. Traces of hopping more akin to the pale ale scale. A hint of pine is pretty much all you get out of this one.

Finishes with lingering cardboard-steeped malt and traces of pine bark.

Eew, this one is either long-gone or never was. Yikes.

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Photo of CHADMC3
2.77/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Pours a transparent gold to orange body with similar colored hues beneath the pillowy, vanilla head, which is very slow to dissolve and leaves a pretty sticky lacing clinging to the glass.

A mild nose consists of pine, grass and citrus hops as well as a fairly strong malt presence.

The flavor is quite a bit on the pine and floral side with perhaps some citrus hops as well. It is a bit too piney versus some of its fine counterparts within the style. There is a mild hint of malt but that piney coating dominates.

Medium to lighter in body with medium carbonation and a pungent, pine finish.

This beer has some potential, but really needs to find a better balance between the hop varieties and malts.

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Photo of GossageBrewery
2.8/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a clear copper color, produced an average white head, average retention and left a little lacing on the glass. The aroma consisted of sweet malted grain and some citric hops. Medium bodied a foundation of malted grain, carmel sweetness and some piney hops. Overall for a DIPA it was unbalanced and not very flavorful.

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Photo of morimech
2.84/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Pours a clear amber color with an attractive dense head that had good retention before settling to a thick cap. Heavy lacing is left down the glass. Looks like a good DIPA.

The aroma is not bad either. I get citrus, herbal/grassy aroma, and Band-Aids. Some underlying caramel malt as well. So far so good.

Man this beer goes off the rails. Very little if any hop flavor. Just bitterness. Disappointing after the buildup. There might be a decent malt profile to be had, but it is hard to enjoy with the astringent bitterness.

The body is solid. Carbonation is about what I want in a DIPA. Feels full and smooth.

Sure looked and smelled promising, but what a disappointment especially considering the price. It probably deserves a 1 by price alone. I imagine a beer like this does not sell well in California, but hey, we don't want it here either. Might of been able to pull this over 5-10 years ago, but not anymore.

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Photo of jzeilinger
2.87/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours a clear amber color with a white, creamy head and active carbonation. The bubbles are bigger than I'm accustomed to seeing.

S - Has a metallic caramel aroma (pretty weird), crackery malt...there's barely ANY aroma to this beer!!! WTF?? (Is that an official beer review term?)

T - Big time caramel malt with some pine bitterness, very one dimensional for a big IPA. Has some citrus bittering and generous sweet caramel malt on the tongue. Very balanced, but I wouldn't say, "Well balanced". On the good side, the ABV is pretty well hidden, almost entirely - now that's cool.

M - Mildly creamy, medium bodied, a little frothy, and the pine and caramel linger after the sip.

D - Decent balance but incredibly boring.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
2.94/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Comes in an amber like color, the carbonation was there but it didn't yield a lasting head. Started at only 1/3" and quickly vanished from there. Aroma was lacking, especially for style. Bring hops next time guys.

Taste revealed hops by its immense bitterness. Dem long boil high alpha acid hops that are light in the flavor department. Caramel and grapefruit. A time traveling machine in 22oz bottles, back to yesteryear when high 100ibu and high alcohol was all you needed to push the limits of what was beer.

I hate the bomber format for dipa, and this is no exception, although at only $4-5, it isn't a terrible deal, but ultimately, its the beer inside that is less than average.

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Hoptopia from Hermitage Brewing
3.02 out of 5 based on 129 ratings.
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