Hoponius Union | Jack's Abby Brewing

BA SCORE
94
outstanding
2,694 Ratings
Hoponius UnionHoponius Union
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Jack's Abby Brewing
Massachusetts, United States
jacksabbybrewing.com

Style: American Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This lager harmoniously combines lager yeast fermentation and west coast IPA hops. Our India style Pale Lager is like a traditional IPA but with a twist - it’s fermented cold and aged for extended periods. A blend of classic American hops creates a huge tropical fruit and citrusy hop aroma. A dry finish accentuates the pleasant bitterness and hop profile. Hoponius Union uses locally grown dehulled spelt from MA.

65 IBU

Added by mschofield on 08-07-2011

BEER STATS
Ratings:
2,694
Reviews:
383
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
8.51%
 
 
Wants:
380
Gots:
581
For Trade:
13
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,694 |  Reviews: 383
Photo of kjkinsey
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of Knapp85
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of nmann08
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of metter98
4.21/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BEERchitect
3.77/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

If the American IPA style is supposed to celebrate the highest hop rates possible and the lowest malt influence that's capable, then why are we fussing with anything other than a the crisp and clean base Lager style? Wouldn't Lager allow for a more dominant showcase of hop character over that of more characterful ale?

That just may be the inspiration that's used for Jack's Abby Hoponius Union. Upon the first glimpse, its off-bright appearance is golden and with the most modest of haze due to evident dry hopping. A frothy head of stark-white foam sits atop the beer in stubborn fashion, lacing with well defined concentric rings at each drink.

The sharp scent of those papery hop cones resonate to the nose with fresh-cut grass, slivers of grapefruit peel, bitter orange, and leafy character. Trailing deep in the recesses are the cracker-like malt structures that only support the hops in timidly supportive role. And like dry IPA, the hops command the taste with a bright botanical notion of dried citrus peel, mulled herbs and grasses, leaf, and lemongrass. Its terse sweetness never rivals the hops but give the most timid support necessary. Dry bread and crackers dissolve on the tongue at middle palate and allows the dry hop flavor to trample over the late palate and aftertaste.

Light bodied, the taste buds and trigemental sense searches for caramel sweetness or a heartier malt impression, but there are none- the beer carries the dry and sensible mouthfeel of German lagers, except they are covered up by the sharper and more acidic hop dryness. Lightly resinous on the palate, the hops trail into mild alcohol warmth and an echo of lightly kilned barley.

It's easy to become seduced by thinking of this beer as a hoppy lager. But the counterpart could be taken too- that this is an IPA with quivering support and exposed hop-derived astringency.

 1,866 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of brentk56
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: The clear golden liquid arrives capped by a fluffy head that leaves copious amounts of lace behind

Smell: Citrusy and floral

Taste: The malt bill of this beer provides a base for the floral and citrusy hops to strut their stuff; grapefruit and tangerine flavors abound with just a slight oniony character; a bit of a lagery twang in the finish reminds you that this is not just another IPA, though I am not sure I would have picked up on it had I not known this was a lager

Mouthfeel: Medium body with the crisp carbonation often found in lagers of this genre

Overall: Just when I thought I had tried just about anything, along comes this twist on a lager that is just a superb drinker - lives up to the hype

 724 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of oline73
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: The beer pours a very slightly amber color with a half finger of off white head. The head fades quickly to a ring around the pour with a small island in the middle.

Smell: Juicy citrus fruit along with grapefruit peel hop bitterness. There is a nice balance between the malt and the hops. Reminds me of a nice west coast IPA.

Taste: Not quite as nice as the smell. I'm getting lots of citrus peel bitterness, but the sweeter citrus juice like notes aren't there as much as they were in the smell. The finish is extremely bitter and almost a bit acidic. The malt behind the hops is bready but not particularly sweet.

Mouthfeel: The body is medium with a ton of fluffy, tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This one smelled fantastic but I thought the taste fell a bit short. It was still quite good, but I wouldn't call it fantastic. I'd have more to see if my opinion changes.

 947 characters

Photo of largadeer
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks, Barry. Glad to finally try this long-time want.

Appearance: Clear pale gold body topped by a lasting, clinging head.

Smell: Big floral and apricot hop notes. Slightly herbal and grassy, with a pleasant whiff of lager yeast buried beneath the hops. There's little in the way of malt.

Palate: This could easily be mistaken for an IPA, albeit an unusually clean and light one. Bitterness is mild, but there are big hop flavors. It leans toward the floral side of things (centennial?), with a touch of citrus and stone fruit. There's a touch of coarse grain flavor, though it's a very dry, very hop forward beer overall. Within the IPL style, I'd say this is a notch below Humulus Lager, and probably Fathom as well, but it's a delicious beer nonetheless and I'd drink it often were it local.

 799 characters

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of olradetbalder
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a BIF from tasterschoice62. 12 ounce can into lager glass, canned on 1/22/2016. Pours lightly hazy golden yellow color with a 1-2 finger dense and fluffy white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, passion fruit, mango, melon, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper, pine, cracker, biscuit, light honey, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of bright citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate bready malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, passion fruit, mango, melon, lemon zest, orange peel, light pepper, pine, cracker, biscuit, light honey, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Moderate pine/citrus rind/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, pineapple, peach, passion fruit, mango, lemon/orange peel, pepper, pine, cracker, biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity, robustness, and balance of bright citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero astringent hop flavors after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from bitterness that increases through the glass. Very clean on lager flavors with zero yeast ester notes present. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately sticky/creamy/bready, and lightly resinous balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with zero warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent IPL style. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate bready malt flavors; and very smooth and easy to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,911 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Reagan1984 for getting this growler out my way. Served in a mug since I've packed all my lager glassware pre-move.

Pours a clear light golden color with a nice white head and some spotty lacing as it goes down. Thin collar throughout. The nose brings some nice tropical fruits with a bit of citrus and resin there as well. The flavor profile is along the same line and is really fantastic. Beautiful fruits and a nice hoppiness throughout. Moderate bitterness throughout and a dry finish. Body is fairly light. Finish is fantastic. This is a very, very impressive beer.

 586 characters

Photo of mothman
3.74/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of nickfl
3.89/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of oberon
4.08/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours into a pokal an orange tinged medium golden with a sticky full one finger bone white head atop.Tropical fruits all over the place in the nose along with light toasted cereal grain.Grainy feel with some dry toasted malt underneath tropical fruit-like hops that linger in the finish.Seems mush small er than 6.7%,one of the more hopped up lagers I have had.

 361 characters

Photo of Boone757
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jlindros
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap at Armsby Abbey

Big creamy 1 finger head, lots of lacing, crystal clear pale yellow golden color.

Nose had fresh hops, resins, hops oils, bit musty, some fresh citrus fruit and grapefruit, almost no lager or malts.

Taste explodes with fresh citrus hops, grapefruit and tropical fruits, light hop resins and musty fresh hop oils, a bit oily, then some light lager fruits and light pale malts, some sweet toasty malts. Light sweet honey like flavor. The it gets very bitter and slightly astringent, the hops way overpower the lager flavors and gets a bit overly on the finish, dry and very bitter finish with lingering fresh hops and citrus, light pine as well, and has a weird sticky almost creamy feel.

Moth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall good, great hop flavors but overpowers the nice lager underneath, and a weird finish as well as a bit astringent.

 866 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Jack's Abby "Hoponius Union"
12 oz. brown glass bottle, "MFG1458032415"
$1.92 @ Weis Market, Conshohocken, PA

I mean it in the best way when I say that the smell and taste of this reminds me of home-brew - the best home brew, of course. It's got that bright, lively, "real ale" character to it. Onward...

Appearance: Its golden-orange body is hazy, and perhaps even cloudy, but given that it's unfiltered one can hardly complain (and that also most likely explains why it tastes so fresh to me!). Its antique-white head rises up majestically, and then slowly settles down into a thick rocky cap. As you might expect the lacing is quite nice as well.

Aroma: Spicy, woody, earthy, floral, citrusy, and even a bit tropical.

Flavor: For the most part the hops remain the same, over a slightly sweet malt base that's distinctly grainy with a very soft edge of golden caramel to it, and perhaps a light touch of toastiness as well - it's cracker-like and biscuity, but there's more going on than just that... I can't quite put my finger on it, but it's pleasant. As I think about it, I'm wondering how much the graininess is adding to the woody and earthy notes in the aroma (?). It's nicely balanced with the hops and malt meshing together, and with the lightly sweet note of maltiness balanced by a solid (but not bold or brash) bitterness. It's odd, this is a lager, made with American hops, and yet it seems very English in nature to me - I've recently returned from a week-long pub crawl in Liverpool, and I can totally imagine finding this on tap from one of their up & coming craft breweries.

Mouthfeel: Initially slightly zesty but then remarkably smooth and velvety. Medium bodied and lightly oily.

Overall: Really quite brilliant! I found it enticing, and then compelling, and finally, really quite satiating and relaxing. For me this is the kind of beer that I want to sit down with at the end of the night with a good book after I've had something a little more basic. It's good enough that it can be the last beer of the evening because unless you're going to go for a barleywine or something like that, there's really nothing that can follow it. Worth seeking out!

 2,180 characters

Hoponius Union from Jack's Abby Brewing
4.23 out of 5 based on 2,694 ratings.
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