Durham Hop Head | County Durham Brewing Company

very good
26 Ratings
no score
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Brewed by:
County Durham Brewing Company
Ontario, Canada

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by grub on 05-11-2007

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Ratings: 26 |  Reviews: 20
Reviews by baiser:
Photo of baiser
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've always liked the brews from Durham and this is no exception. Easily one of the best IPAs in Ontario. Pours a golden orange with a bit of haze, soapy white head, good retention and lacing. Aroma of fruit, pine, hops, a bit of grapefruit. Nice amount of hops, not the big monsters out west, but very well balanced with some malty sweetness up front. Moderate mouthfeel, low carbonation, smooth and easy to drink. Quite a good session beer i think.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of biboergosum
3.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at C'est What.

This beer appears a clear pale golden colour, with a finger or so of wispy, soapy white head, which leaves a thin ring of lace around the glass. It smells of white cereal grain, and grapefruit, grassy hops. The taste is more cereal grain, and a stronger grapefruit/mixed citrus hoppiness. The carbonation on the low side, the body fairly smooth and round, and it finishes dry and hoppy, just how I likes 'em!

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Photo of Sammy
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of five casks on at C'est What. Hoppy aroma draws me in. Cloudy orange. Creamy mouthfeel, taking into account this is cask. Very lacey. Controlled bitterness really, and though not very bold flavour my taste buds are preserved for something else.

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Photo of irishkyle21
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's pretty sad that I have to travel 4 to 5 hours to get a beer on cask but I guess it could be worse. Has a foamy white head and a golden color underneath (a little hazy). Good lacing and retention.

Smells of citric hops, fruits, theres some grass and earth in there as well.

Tastes of bitter hops, the pale malts stop in for a quicky. A great beer and its on cask!

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Photo of Antilochus
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On cask at C'est What. Pint glass.

Cloudy golden orange body and nice sudsy and rocky white head. Great retention.

Citrusy nose, good bready malt backbone to even out the hop profile.

Lightish creamy mouthfeel. Grapefruity palate. Easy drinking. A little fruit comes out too. Great stuff.

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Photo of liamt07
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint at C'est What. Clear golden colour with a nice head that was retained until my last sip. Massive sheets of lacing on the side of the glass. Smell was fresh, a little bit of citrusy hops, bit piney too. Tad watery at first, but there was nice smooth and restrained bitterness that I get right after. Creamy in the mouthfeel, quite nice and not heavily carbonated. Easily drinkable and a real nice beer!

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Photo of mrmanning
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cask at C'est what- Served to me a slightly hazed orange with a thin and lacy eggshell cap. Nose of fresh,leafy, right of the vine hops....hops hops hops...perfume, lemon and grapefruit with a bit of bread crust and earthy malts. I like the fresh hop aroma. I wasn't as sold on the flavour, but it was still good. Again, the fresh hops are the main star...grapefruit pith and citrus flavours...leafy greens lead to mango and then lead to a bit of bready malty sweetness. Fucking creamy as hell, I could drink this by the gallon. Very good.

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Photo of grub
3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

sampled on cask at volo.

pours slightly hazy deep yellow with a big fluffy white head. drops very slow with lots of lace.

great aroma. grapefruit and a hint of pine. light bready malt. hint of alcohol.

taste is nice. low bitterness, lower than i expected from the aroma and style. light orange citrus. bit of pine. grainy. white bread. bit of alcohol.

mouthfeel is nice. light carbonation. somewhat thin body, at least thinner than i expected.

drinkability is pretty good. balanced and nice.

 506 characters

Photo of bluetrevian
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of Derek
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cask at Volo. Tapped 5 days ago, but still tastes fresh (thanks to Ralph's excellent cellarmanship & the abundance of hops!).

A: Clear yellow with a fluffy, white head. Good retention & great lacing.

S: Grapefruit, pine and hints of grassy hops. The hops really dominate the nose.

T: Plenty of hop flavour: grapefruit, pine and a little peach (more "Pacific Northwest" than their Hop Addict). Modest bitterness (considering the hop aroma & flavour!). Delicately light breadyness... but this is really about the hop flavour.

M: Creamy, light body, modest carbonation (on cask).

D: Excellent.

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Photo of crwills
3.55/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on cask at Victory Cafe. I almost didn't bother, since I had it confused with Durham's Hop Addict (which I've had several times before), but then realized this was a different beer.

Much hoppier, is the main difference. Great, American-hops aroma; very citrusy and grapefruity but restrained. The temperature smooths out what I think might be hop overkill if this were served in a different way. Flavour is a bit over-the-top bitter; I could have used a little more balance, but maybe I'm used to more British-style cask beers. Good, creamy mouthfeel. Although the cask probably improved this beer, it's not the type of beer I'd normally look for on cask.

OK all around, I guess.

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Photo of Viggo
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

New cask offering from Durham, had a few pints of this at Volo.

Pours a hazy gold/yellow, thick white head forms, nice lacing on the glass, super retention. Smell is nice, sweet malts, caramel, pine and citrus hops, very balanced, not super complexity but hits the spot. Taste is malty up front, piney floral and citrus hops, bit of bread and spice, nice hoppiness, balance with a clean bitterness. Mouthfeel is light bodied with low carbonation, very smooth. Easy drinking beer with enough complexity for those who desire a bit more, very balanced. Great offering from Durham, hopefully this is regular.

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Photo of pootz
3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

From Cask at the Castle:

Pulled a pale clouded yellow into my pint glass. Rocky sticky cap had fair retention.

Decent aroma to the cask version, The Cascades and fuggles variety hops combine with the yeast esters to produce a musty-peach or earthy citrus discernment.

Thin bodied, light malt spine mild, character.

The frontside is well balanced with mild malts and citrusy hops then the fuggles take over in the thin mid palate and bitter up the finish....mild and drikable.

Nice dose of cascade flavor but this beer is too pale and thin of malts, ABV and mild to be called an IPA...possibly a great west coast style version of a mild pale but not an IPA. A nice session mild but consider me underwhelmed if this is an IPA.

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Photo of kwjd
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at C'est What. Pours a hazy orange with a finger of thick white head that doesn't really dissipate down the glass. Nice lacing. Smells a bit soapy, but has some citrus and earthy hops as well. Flavour is a bit bitter, but not over the top. I don't know if I would say this is an American IPA as it seems a bit weaker than that, but it is nice still.

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Photo of biegaman
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Off cask at C'est What?, in Toronto.

The beer's golden colour is uniquely off-set, a sort of faded complexion made so by a natural, healthy haziness; it's like a TV picture going out of focus, it makes the eyes dizzy. Its head was thin and appeared like a fresh-fallen sheet of snow over a still and pristine frozen pond. Curiously, however, it all evaporated very quickly (it is July, after all).

When I, like most people, think of 'hoppy' pale ales I think of bright colours, the oranges and pinks of tropical fruit zests, or perhaps the colour green because of the pine needles and the resiny sap of giant trees that North American hops emulate so well. This is hoppy, to be sure, but like its appearance, its colour is a little faded, out of focus.

The aroma, like the beer overall, has a kind of 'passive-aggressive' hoppiness. It doesn't have the greatly aromatic, wickedly citric hoppiness of an American IPA (despite that it does perspire notes of grapefruit and orange) nor does it have the passivity of most English offerings (despite that it is appreciably mild and characteristically balanced).

The flavour espouses a great deal of hoppy resins, some earthy while others more fruit-like, but they don't, by any stretch, amount to a disconcerting amount of bitterness. Nay, this beer was designed for high-gear drinking and it's perfectly suited to just that (especially when the cask is in perfect condition, which it was!)

County Durham's Hop Head deviates from the traditional English session ales as much as it is epitomizes them. Sure, it is more hop-driven than most but it doesn't become carried away with them and, moreover, it still speaks to the virtues of balance and moderation in brewing (and their necessity in making sessionable, widely agreeable offerings).

 1,792 characters

Photo of hunterjames
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of kjyost
3.14/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had as part of Cask IPA challenge at Bar Volo.

Came to me as part of a three 5 oz servings. None had head. None laced. WTF?

Comes to me looking way too yellow for me to honestly view it as an IPA. Some bread and light fruit on the nose, though much too light for my liking. Taste is more of the same, with the same thinness affecting the drink. Needs a stronger and more assertive malt body along with more aroma & flavour hops...

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Photo of TurdFurgison
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on cask at C'est What (one of five casks!). This was clear, straw yellow, with about 1 finger or froth, some lacing on the pint glass. The aroma was a little citrusy with a toasted malt base. Really nice fresh hops flavors take the lead, grapefruit and pine, but I get a lot of fresh bread in the aftertaste. Nice creamy mouthfeel as expected on cask, very full feeling. As drinkable as any cask ale, it went down fast. This is just a strong, solid choice, I'd have ordered more but there were 5 casks to choose from.

 528 characters

Photo of BrewSomerville
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aroma of grapefruit, other citrusy fruits, some spicyness.

Looked golden/yellow in colour. Small off-white head. Good head retention with a good amount of lace.

Taste is hoppy. Tangerine, orange peel, grapefruit... and some spicyness (sp?).

Mouthfeel was smooth, gentle, very fine carbonation. Light to medium bodied, but on the lighter side.

Overall, it's a great IPA for the summer, especially on cask.

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Photo of kelvarnsen
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Photo of bobsy
4.14/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had numerous times on cask at C'est What? and Volo, where it is certainly helped by the excellent condition the owners keep the casks in. Nice golden appearance with a long-lasting white head and huge sheets of lacing. Fresh, lively, hoppy aroma. Taste was fresh and full of hops, with gave it a very nice (but not overpowering) bitterness. The malt base is also well balanced with the hops and provides a solid backbone of texture and flavour. The palate was medium-bodied with low levels of carbonation. Excellent stuff!

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Photo of TerryW
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice hoppy aroma, hazy orange pour with a firm head and good lace. A handsome beer.

Gently bitter compared to other IPA's, nice grapefruit/citrus flavour, understated malt. Softly carbonated, easy to drink.

An enjoyable beer of some interest to fans of hops, but not overwhelming if someone is looking to try a hoppy beer.

 324 characters

Photo of morningthief
4/5  rDev +3.6%

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

A - Very lightly hazy yellow with maybe a half inch head, but it lasts forever.

S - Fruity and yeasty with a strong grapefruity hops.

T - Again the hops are prominent. Strong citrus/grapefruit is a bit one dimensional. Light maltiness and fruit are barely noticeable.

M - Lighty carbonated, creamy and smooth.

D - This is all about the hops. A bit one-dimensional and not particularly complex, but for what it is, it's pretty good.

 443 characters

Photo of DaPan
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

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Durham Hop Head from County Durham Brewing Company
3.86 out of 5 based on 26 ratings.
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