Hoponius Union | Jack's Abby Brewing

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Hoponius UnionHoponius Union
BA SCORE
4.24/5
Exceptional
2,778 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
Ranking:
#882
Reviews:
402
Ratings:
2,778
pDev:
8.49%
Bros Score:
4.23
 
 
Wants:
384
Gots:
621
Trade:
12
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,778 |  Reviews: 402
Photo of Rekrule
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of hagbergl
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Bottled in mid-November–perfect timing for Thanksgiving drinking.

Appearance: Towering pillowy white head atop a clear orange-yellow body. Tons of soapy lacing and serious head retention.

Smell: Candied orange, light grapefruit and some toasted bready graininess that conjures in your mind the smell of a German lager (like a Helles) that's just been hopped way up. Solid smelling beer, though certainly more muted than an ale. (As an IPA lover I do miss that piney dankness that wafts up from the freshly opened bottle. I'm not getting that here.)

Taste: Tons of crisp smooth candied orange and pink grapefruit, kiwi and pineapple in the flavor. Not as aggressive as an IPA in its hop attack but still delivers lots of hop flavor. Malt is there and more noticeable than in a regular IPA, but firmly in a supporting, minimalistic role. Very dry finish accentuates the hops and brings on the bitterness in the finish. One thing I will say about the beer is that it doesn't warm that well and loses a bit of crispness in the flavor and mouthfeel (as if the carbonation dissipated).

Mouthfeel: Clean and smooth mouthfeel with a decent medium carbonation (I do feel that the beer could have a slight bump in carbonation level). I love the dry finish, which really helps the hop flavors pop towards the end.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Thorpe429. Thanks Mike.

The beer is clear and golden hued with a small head that leaves sparse lacing on the tulip. Lots of fresh hop character in both the nose and taste. This drinks much more like an IPA than a German lager. And while this beer is tasty, it does lack the distinctive characteristics of a Dortmunder lager. The body is light and the finish is dry, offering a hint of lager yeast. Overall, a tasty brew. Easy to drink and flavorful, just don't expect an authentic example of the style. I would definitely have this again.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Growler shared by Thorpe.

Pours a clear golden amber with a thin white head, quickly fading to a thin collar and no lace. Clean, dry aroma with a subtle hop bite, mildly fruity, with light yeast. Medium thick body with soft carbonation and a bready, biscuit finish. Slight fruity sweetness from a strong hop bitterness. Not quite a real dortmunder, but an expectional lager/IPA hybrid. Really enjoyed this.

 407 characters

Photo of LHRodriguez
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of drabmuh
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Thorpe, at the time of this review, this is the #2 beer on the "Top Beers - Dortmunder / Export Lager" list on beeradvocate.com.

Beer is yellow with a mild haze, wispy white head, minimal lacing.

Aroma is quite hoppy, sweet, fruity hops, a mild yeast presence.

Beer is light in body and a little sweet, moderately bitter on the finish and quite hoppy in the midpalate. I really like this beer very good. I'd have a lot more of this if available to me.

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Photo of Jesse14
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of rinhaak
4.75/5  rDev +12%

Photo of Auror
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of Damian
4.59/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank on tap at the The Publick House & Monk's Cell, Brookline, MA
Served in a pint glass

Nearly clear, golden-amber appearance. The liquid was topped by a small, flimsy white head. A thin blanket of streaky lacing coated the top inch of the glass.

The aroma was exceptional. Peach, apricot and nectarine notes dominated the nose. Tropical fruits came through strong as well. Mango and pineapple were most noticeable. Touch of citrus. Some caramel malt sweetness trailed in the background.

The flavor profile was remarkably hoppy and complex. Similar to the nose in many ways except perhaps more crisp and bitter. Caramel malts came through on the front end before the hops took over. Lots of candied citrus peel. Hints of mango. Spicy in the center with notes of peaches. The finish was piney and resiny. Quite dry and bitter. Overall, the beer was well balanced and drinkable.

The mouthfeel was medium bodied and pillowy soft. Super smooth and creamy with a fine bubbled, moderate effervescence.

The boys at Jack's Abby have redefined what a lager can be. This beer competes with (and beats) many of the best IPAs in the country. I cannot wait to see what these guys come up with next.

 1,192 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
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 BostonBrewins
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of N8DAGR8
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of chazmatz
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was poured for me at Jacks Abby, and I brought this growler home and poured a chimay goblet full of Hoponius Union.

I'd say this is in the Dortmunder Export style, but with the distinct hoppiness of an IPA. Unlike any in the Dortmund style due to its unusual amount of hoppiness.

The look:
Hoponius had a nice one finger of head, which was light and creamy-looking. Almost fluffy. Light golden color and small bubbles rising.

The sniff:
Super floral, grapefruity, zesty, and pine aromas. The amarillo hops are evident in the bouquet.

The taste:
Hit hard by the crisp floral bitterness, again, very floral, sharp and bitter at first, followed by light sweetness. Mouthfeel, very soft and creamy. Carbonation is mild. So well balanced, the blend of hops creates a complex world of flavors that are not overwhelming, though the dominant flavor seems to come from the Amarillo hops.

The finish:
Chewy pine resin with clean floral finish. Makes me want to drink another. A very fine beer.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I received this as an extra from Gogriz (thanks Cody!). It was an unlabeled 12oz bottle, filled expressly for him (not distributed). Talk about a cool extra!

It pours a clear light copper color with a few fingers of frothy foam. The aroma is really hoppy for a lager. In fact I recently tried an Indian Pale Lager and it didn't smell quite as hoppy as this beer. Simcoe I believe, resiny with a splash of cat urine.

It tastes as good as it smells, and its actually pretty hard to tell its a lager. A touch of initial sweetness turns into a manageable bitterness in the aftertaste. Very well constructed, this was smooth and flavorful. I could definitely go for a whole lot more of this beer, surprised I never heard of it before. I'll have to try to stop here sometime in the future!

 785 characters

Photo of Bilco
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of morebeergood
3.92/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Stone's Public House in Ashland. Served in a standard pint glass. Bright yellow color. Nice white head. Good amount of carbonation. Great hop aroma for a lager. Taste was surprisingly good. Well balanced hop flavor, but not overboard. Amazing they can pack that much hop taste into a lager. Mouthfeel was smooth but crisp. This is a really great beer, and it's easily their best offering I have had to date.

 417 characters

Photo of BillDon
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - pours a one finger pillowy head, nice lacing down the glass. Not a ton but enough down the side.

Crystal clear golden amber color.

Smell - this is the best thing. Tons of hops smell, citric or pine smell. Your olfactories will be in overdrive as you smell this beer. I think it is simeco hops.

Taste mouthfeel - as a lager this beer is super clean. The hops you smell are the typical over the top hops. With an 65 IBU this beer doesn't kill your palate.

Overall - this is the signature beer of Jack's Abby, you have to try it.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

@ Bukowski's, Boston

Deep honey color with a fluffy bunny head. Foam sticks to the glass and creates the silhouette of a brontosaurus.

Smells like a fresh bag o' hops. Grassy and citrus. Taste, again, is akin to a bag o' grassy and citrus hops. I believe the term "hop juice" would not be inappropriate. Silky, Al Green smooth mouthfeel.

Never heard of Jack's Abbey until the bartender told me. Had a great time at Bukowski's, me, Jack's Abbey and a live Santana recording.

 478 characters

Photo of Rusty18
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of taez555
4.8/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beers pours a crystal clear bright golden tan body with a very mildly off-white head.

Nose is extreme, in your face, resin and citric hops. I just picked up a growler from the brewery about 2 hours ago, and the smell from this fresh hops are sublime.

Taste is medium bodied with an immediate huge citric hop resin, grapefruit, orange, lemon, citric hop attack. Loads of rich malts, but very smooth (probably thanks to the lager yeast). That's really what does it I think, it's got all the flavors of a big IPA, but goes down smooth like crisp lager. A perfect combo. Bitterness isn't overpowering at all. It's bitter, but really well balanced and in check. The smooth caramel malt flavor has a chance to shine through despite the hops. You can clearly taste the two parts of this beer. Ends with a nice lingering hop resin bitterness and flavor.

I know this beer is a lager, but... come on.... this beer is a pure resin IPA (sans the ale yeast). Kudos to Jack's Abby for showing the world that not all Lager's need be boring macro land. This beer easily holds it's own the best California resin/citric IPA's. If JA takes off, this will be their flagship brew.

 1,167 characters

Photo of kaelingirl
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of spycow
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of Gushue3
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of amphion1065
3.35/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Meadhall, served in a branded pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a hazy, rich shade of caramel. A nice, tight one-finger head of white foam forms.

Pretty serious pine resin in the aroma. The hop presense is very robust, and that piney character is quite evident. A little bit of underlying sweetness in the nose, but it's mostly about that hop stickiness.

The taste isn't quite the aroma's equal. I was quite surprised by the sweetness throughout the taste - there's a very strong malt backbone, but unfortunately with the hop profile it comes off as a little faded. I was left wondering just how old this keg was.

The mouthfeel only bolstered my suspicions about the age of this beer. Undercarbonated, almost to the point of feeling dead, this seemed a little thin and watery.

Jack's Abby is doing some great things, but this beer - and more specifically, this pint - was just OK. I hope to try a growler of this soon, and with any luck drink a more representative sample.

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Hoponius Union from Jack's Abby Brewing
Beer rating: 4.24 out of 5 with 2,778 ratings