Hotbox Coffee IPA
Oskar Blues Grill & Brew

Hotbox Coffee IPAHotbox Coffee IPA
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American IPA
3.9 | pDev: 12.56%
Oskar Blues Grill & Brew
Colorado, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Hotbox Coffee IPAHotbox Coffee IPA
Notes: An odd couple can make for some of the most incredibly unique tastiness. Take Hotbox Coffee IPA for example - a piney, citrus, mango, Simcoe-hopped IPA and an infusion of cold brew extract made with Hotbox Roasters' Ethiopian beans poppin' with creamy blueberry and cacao notes.

70 IBU
Reviews: 44 | Ratings: 157 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of GrandpaGeorge
3.32/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

For a beer that is (according to BA) "retired," the keg at Oscar's was very real. This showed up on the menu as "a piney, citrus, mango, Simcoe-hopped IPA and an infusion of cold brew extract made with roasted Ethiopian coffee beans." Reminded me of a pale rauchbier I tried in Montreal. The color just didn't match the flavor in my mouth. That said, this was definitely unique. The hops were present in the nose and in the initial taste, but then the coffee flavor (subtle, not overpowering) came in. Frankly, it wasn't too bad. Definitely not something I'd put down too many of, but it was worth trying.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

On draught at Frontier Brewing in Casper as part of a tap takeover. Pours Pale gold, clear,sizeable head of foam. Big coffee grounds, light hoppiness in the aromas, smooth coffee taste, hops not totally hidden and adds some bitterness to what the coffee brought. Excellent mouthfeel surprisingly good drinkability and execution of coffee with a beer that isn't a Porter or a Stout.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.2/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Had this yesterday waiting for the fights to get started. Pours a golden color with plenty of clarity, looks like an AAL pretty much. Small 1/4" white head. Aroma wasn't too big on coffee, there was something similar to coffee that wasn't hops, but it was hardly like a blast of coffee like you get in the God tier coffee beers.

Taste was more of the same, there was a slight coffee aspect but something about it is different from most coffee beers, even hoppy ones. At the end of the day its still less good than their non coffee ipas. Sure, its interesting to try, but it doesn't really lead the world in hops or coffee, so its kind of middling.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

on draft in a shaker pint glass

mildly hazy golden color, thick white head. nice hop aroma - I really don't pick up the coffee. same with flavor - nice balancing bitterness but not really any roast. blind I wouldn't pick it out. medium bodied.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a custom shaped grip glass: color is a slightly hazy straw gold, head is off white with some lacing.

Smell is unique blend of hoppy bitterness and moderate/strong roasted coffee, maybe an earthier roast to play well with the toasted malt flavors instead of harsher darker roast.

Taste is similar to the aroma with a bit more coffee presence: light citrusy hops and then moderate roasted coffee, earthy notes.

Mouthfeel is moderate with good carbonation and pleasant ipa style lingering bitterness.

Overall a much different and better beer than i expected, unique flavors and balance of aromas and flavors with a pleasant coffee component.

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Photo of arizcards
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single from TW Arrowhead 4-16-17 for $3.49. Canned on 3/2/17 and stored in the beer fridge since purchase.

Beer poured golden with a beautiful long lasting white head.

Nose was citrus and tropical hops forward with a wee bit of coffee in the background.

Taste was fresh mango and citrus up front with a light hint of coffee and pine in the finish - there was a small bitter bite.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied and refreshing.

Overall i thought this beer held out pretty well over that period of time. Liked the subtle hint of coffee as a contributor.

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Photo of nick_perry
2.81/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Hazy yellow-orange appearance. Foamy two finger white head that lingers for a while. Floral aroma, but like that of a scented dish soap. Taste is a bit odd, like they didn’t use very good coffee with which to brew.

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Photo of hman43
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: It pours golden with a frothy white head. There is plenty of lacing on the sides and the head retention is good.

Smell: The initial aromas are highlighted by coffee, blueberry, and citrus. There are some low mango notes in the background.

Taste: The flavors are highlighted by strong coffee flavors up front with blueberry, cocoa, and mango coming through as the flavor lingers. There are also citrus notes.

Feel: It has a moderate feel and is somewhat creamy in the texture. The coffee last through the finish but the fruit flavors balance it out.

Overall, this is a good IPA and the blueberry and coffee combinations work well with the citrus and mango.

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Photo of Bonkinishwa
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Oskar Blues - Hotbox Coffee IPA. 7.2% ABV. 12oz can poured into a pint glass. Canned 2/27/17.

Look: Golden body, with semi clarity. Had a one finger sized white head, which turned to sticky lacing.

Smell: Coffee up front, backed by earthy hops and malt.

Feel: Mild carbonation, smooth.

Taste: Bitter roast coffee and dank hops. Had some malt on the finish.

Overall: Coffee in an IPA; both are great, but not together in one. Not really a fan of this.

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Photo of chicagobeerguy
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L: A nice frothy head, golden honey coloring

S: A great mix of roasted coffee with the classic hop presence you'd expect from Oskar blues

T: A fantastic blend of the two flavors, a nice juicy IPA flavor with the toasted coffee flavor you'd find in a stout. Was not expecting those flavors to go together so well

F: A nice carb, lighter body, very drinkable

O: Normally I find these type of beers gimmicky, However, Hotbox IPA did not disappoint. A great mix of two distinct flavors that played off each other very nicely. Wish I could have gotten more of this.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz can poured into a snifter
Canned 3/2/17

A- pours a hazy pale golden-yellow color with a one-finger foamy white head that has pretty good retention

S- smells of dank hops, mango, pine, cannabis and earthy coffee

T- piney and tropical hops up front with some mango and guava notes, followed by some citrus. The finish brings out just a hint of coffee, that adds some fruity berry notes and a slight earthy finish

M- medium body with medium carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel a crisp finish

O- pretty good overall, was expecting more coffee flavor. It comes out more as fruity rather than straight coffee

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Photo of Prager62
3.79/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A 12oz. can that's a little long in the tooth dated 03/02/17 poured in my free Oskar Blues 'Fidy' glass.

Look- Pours a super clean and transparent brilliant gold leaving a finger of creamy white foam behind. A moderate amount of lacing is apparent after settling.

Smell- Burnt dark roast, pine, orange zest and a hint of fresh rubber.

Taste- Grapefruit, pine and a little coffee. There's something in the finish akin to vanilla or coffee creamer.

Feel- Creamy slick, smooth and dangerously drinkable. A slightly bitter hop bite is present.

Overall- I need to get a fresher can to see if the coffee pops more? I did enjoy this 'old' can enough to review. It had a pleasant hoppy profile that was somewhat roasty and very easy to drink for the abv. I'll definitely be looking for this again.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Golden hued with a quarter inch of densely packed off white to lightly tan foam resting on top. Moderate lacing. The nose is an intense melange of coffee and piney hops. The taste is initially pine, then quickly escalates to coffee, and back to pine at the back of the palate. The mouth is a touch oily and sticky.

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Photo of RyanK252
3.94/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can poured into an Oskar Blues pint glass

A: Pours slightly hazy golden amber with a frothy off white head that settles to a light layer and leaves some spotty lacing.

S: Pine, maybe a bit grassy, light citrus and tropical fruit, roasty coffee, and sweet caramel cream.

T: The IPA side shows up first with pine, citrus, orange and lemon, and a hint of tropical fruit, passion fruit and maybe mango, then the other half takes over, roasty coffee, chocolate, sweet cream, and caramel, rounded out with a little biscuity malt.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation.

O: Pretty solid coffee IPA. Flavors play pretty well together. Of the hand full of beers like this that I've tried this is towards the top.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.81/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

i am on an enormous coffee beer kick right now, and you just dont see too many coffee pale beers, so this was a treat. i dont think its as good as that porter they did years back was, that was really special, but for the lighter colored coffee beers, i think this is really good, and way better than most in the style. the coffee is more aromatic than flavorful, which i think is good because the acidity stays low and so does the bitterness, the hops take care of that in the finish. the coffee is a roasty richness that adds a depth to the malt base without even a trace of sugar, and whatever coffee they have selected, and how it has been added, is just right. its adds chocolate and char, but lets the hops still stand up and make this seem fresh and ipa-esque first. fuller bodied and rather substantial, but i want that in a beer like this. super well done, not overly bitter considering all the hops and coffee together, and one of those beers you could really lose yourself in. better than expected, always good to see these guys putting new beer out there, i think the thirst for new flavors from these guys is enormous and this really satiates me right now. yum.

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Photo of metter98
3.74/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is hazy yellow in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger and a half high frothy off white head that died down, but left lots of lacing running down the sides of the glass and a short head covering the surface.
S: Light to moderate aromas of citrusy hops are present in the nose—as the beer warms up some hints of coffee become perceptible.
T: Much like the smell, the taste starts off like a typical citrusy IPA with lots of orange flavors, but as it starts to warm up notes of coffee start to appear. There are also some hints of tropical fruits.
M: It feels light to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. Only a slight amount of bitterness is present.
O: This is definitely more of an IPA than a coffee beer, but the cold brew definitely lends an interesting twist.

Serving type: can

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Photo of Harrison8
4.09/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a golden wheat that is close to clear. Head foams up just shy of 3 fingers, and off-white in color. Good retention, with a few patches of lacing left behind. Aroma is earthy, spruce coffee with butter, and pine hop. Lovely coffee shop quality. Flavor profile is spruce, medium-roasted coffee with a hint of lemon zest. Lovely pine and resin hops in the background. Mouth feel is medium-thick with a fine graininess to it. Overall, a tasty coffee IPA that delivers well on the coffee note. It's lively, and much different than other coffee beers in that it tastes like a well-brewed pour-over coffee from a coffee shop resting in a vat of beer.

Served in a 12oz snifter from a 12oz can.

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Photo of craftbeersweden
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I must say I was really suspicious over this beer... I’ve tried Stone Mocha IPA (8 months ago) and I didn’t like it.

The beer looks nice when I pour it: Light hazy, yellow-amber with a two finger, fluffy, white head that leaves lacing on the glass.

Nose: Wow! It is strange but good! Coffe beans, dark chocolate, a lot of caramel malt and a great amount of hoppy bitterness.
Taste: Pine, hops, cookies, caramel and some coffee at the end. Very balanced and I must say - Good!
Mouth: Full body. Medium carbonation. Dry and light bitter ending.

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Photo of snilsen13
3.86/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

The beer is blonde. The coffee flavors are very mild and they don't sour the beer flavors. Oscar Blues is great with malt. They create clean refreshing flavors, bringing out the full potential of caramel and chocolate roasts, without the pitfalls often associated with using dark malts (sour off flavors). They apply this chemistry here and let a subtle but flavorful coffee-ness come through where they usually put more hoppy bitterness.

The only other coffee flavored beer I've found enjoyable was a coffee Kolsch (blond color) and this rings true for me as well. It works, maybe not as well as the other one I like, but the "ale" character of this beer is so tasty I don't mind that the coffee flavors are so mild.

Very drinkable and very session-able. You'll be happy to buy a 6pack.

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Photo of Suds
3.64/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is a hazy, golden-peach colored liquid. The head is thick and white, with thick lace. Musty aroma...some roasted coffee notes, but also grain, malt, and solidly bitter hops. Earthy notes. The beer is full, but also a little sharp. Bitter and spicy finish. Not bad.

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Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L- Pours a clear, burnt orange with an one-finger, white, soapy head that receeds a bit and turns creamy. Lots of carbonation.
S- Nice, crisp bitter hop smell with some coffee, chocolate and vanilla.
T- Nice piney, crisp hop taste that dominates. Th coffee is more subtle that is most noticeable in the finish. Actually, quite pleasant.
F- Still quite light and crisp like a Pinner, which I love. piney resin sticks around.
O- didn't think it was going to be good, but suprised me.

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Photo of MikeWard
3.96/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz can into a pint glass. Canned 2/15/17, so about 3 months old.

Very hazy burnt orange body. Small white head dissipating to a thick ring and faint covering. Decent enough lacing.

Malt and non-citrus fruit on the nose. No coffee.

There is a hint of coffee on the taste. Which is okay by me, since my last coffee ipa, Neshaminy's Coffee JAWN was a veritable coffee bomb. This is a fairly tasty, evenly balance ipa. hops are minimal.

About medium on the mouth, faintly sour bite on the finish.

Overall, an okay drink. Would be interesting to try a month old can, to see just how much the coffee taste increases. Still finding my way around coffee ipa's. Evidence might suggest I'm hard to please on the sub-style.

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Photo of zeff80
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out a clear, golden yellow color with a one-finger head of foam. It smelled of coffee, pine and citrus. Good piney IPA bitterness with a very mellow coffee flavor.

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Photo of teromous
2.26/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

From the bottom of the can: "CANNRD ON : 02/15/[email protected] 09: 52 CAFFEINATED ADULTERY"

Appearance: The beer has a light straw colored body that is hazy and supports a large sized white fluffy head. Lots of carbonation is visible through the nearly opaque body.

Aroma: I pick up a strong flowery aroma. Contrary to the "COFFEE" portrayed on the can, the beer smells nothing like coffee.

Taste: I am at a lost for words here. I expected that, despite the lack of coffee aroma, there would somehow be a presence of coffee in the flavor of this beer. Even if I could not smell it I was holding out for one last reprieve against the inevitable cessation of flavor. Unfortunately this was not so. Where is the coffee?! Seriously, What is going on with this beer?! I feel like I have been duped.

Mouthfeel: It's hard to focus on mouthfeel when I've been given a "coffee beer" without a single bean to consider. To the credit of this beer it is pretty drinkable but it is about as satisfying as giving a coffeee drinker a cup of water in the morning as a substitute.

Overall: This beer literally does not taste or smell like coffee at all. I feel as though I have been duped and therefore I would never recommend or drink this beer again. I am certain that somebody who randomly stumbles upon this might think that I am a coffee snob or that I am over-reacting. I seriously wish it were that simple. This beer literally doesn't have any coffee character to it. What is going on here? It feels like exploitation via buzz-words. It is a tragic waste of potential...

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Photo of ichorNet
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I've actually enjoyed more coffee IPAs than I have disliked the style, so this should be an interesting one. OB has been putting out some decent-enough new stuff with solid national reach lately, so let's see how this coffe-infused hoppy ale tastes. Note that my can was packaged in February of 2017, so it's about 2 months old at this point. Coffee and hops alike tend to fall off/lose freshness with time, but we'll see if this somehow stands up over that period.

Pours a cloudy light orange-amber color with a nice, thick and foamy head of bone-white, leaving behind sticky and consistent, cobweb-y lace as it settles to a finger in my glass. Surface is hazy and full of clusters of white bubbles. Slowly-rising carbonation bubbles through a uniformly-translucent beer without much in the way of visible sediment. I expected some fine particulate matter given the coffee and hops, but this is really nicely consistent looking. Excellent looker.

Nose is bright citrus, dank pine, freshly-ground coffee, honeydew melon and toffee with some slight berry notes and pithy citrus/citrus rind. Very complex but maybe a bit less popping than it was when it was fresh. Hope I can find some less than a month old some time, as this is quite a doozy. I really like the nose here. OB plays the balance game well and I'm surprised to say I pick up the Ethiopian coffee and Simcoe hops in almost equal measures. Slightly juicy with a semi-catty note. Impressive and weird.

Flavor is blueberry and melon/grapefruit upfront with a chalky mid-palate that transitions into slightly roasty blonde-esque coffee and some toffee and nutty like malt qualities. The play off the bright and citrusy/berry with these malty and deep, complex roasted coffee qualities makes this really enjoyable. Though I'm sure some will find this combination a bit too bizarre to get into, I actually find this really drinkable and fun to sip at. Feel is slightly oily upfront but thinner and a bit watery towards the finish, however. That's really my only "complaint" about this beer. Great stuff here that I'm sure will find its niche among certain beer drinkers.

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Hotbox Coffee IPA from Oskar Blues Grill & Brew
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 157 ratings