Hopslam Ale | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

3,517 Reviews
Hopslam AleHopslam Ale

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Starting with six different hop varietals added to the brew kettle & culminating with a massive dry-hop addition of Simcoe hops, Bell's Hopslam Ale possesses the most complex hopping schedule in the Bell's repertoire. Selected specifically because of their aromatic qualities, these Pacific Northwest varieties contribute a pungent blend of grapefruit, stone fruit, and floral notes. A generous malt bill and a solid dollop of honey provide just enough body to keep the balance in check, resulting in a remarkably drinkable rendition of the Double India Pale Ale style.

Added by beernbbq on 04-14-2004

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Reviews: 3,517 | Ratings: 12,945
Photo of praufs01
4.87/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Slightly hazy orange/yellow brew with a frothy off-white head that dissipates quickly.

Aroma - Wisps of semi-sweet raw honey float on a solid grapefruit and pine resin hop aroma.

Mouthfeel - Full bodied brew that has a moderate amount of small bubble carbonation. The brew is syrupy but not sticky.

Taste - Mildly sweet up front followed by a light grapefruit middle that smoothes out and finishes with a nice raw honey aftertaste.

Overall - Outstanding!!! I can really taste the raw honey in this brew. Just the right amount of everything. Full in flavor but not overly sweet, nor bitter, nor carbonated. Great looking, smelling, and tasting. I wish it wasn't 10% alcohol because I really would like to have more than two in a session ; )

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Photo of Gilgemesh
4.18/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a beautiful golden amber with a finger or two of head. Fluffy and light like whipped butter atop the amber candy below. The smell isn't as pungent as I expected, but is complex with a hint of the hoppy bitterness to come. The flavor is quite nice, and quite well rounded. Hops up front with a hint of the honey sweetness are followed by a nice hoppy bitter finish. Crisp and refreshing. This will be an excellent hot day beer and a very nice example of what I like in a DIPA. Worth the too much I paid for it.

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Photo of Aenema
4.4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a slightly cloudy amber with a full, sticky head and nice lacing.
Smell - Lots of grapefruit along with piney, citrus hops.
Taste - Starts with full, citrus hop burst and finishes with a bitter hop bite. Tremendously juicy grapefruit and rich overall experience.
Mouthfeel - Creamy with a crisp finishes that resets the palate and allows each sip to replay the great combination of flavors.
Drinkability - Great drinkability for a beer of this strength, the alcohol is well-masked.

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Photo of MPLS
4.17/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have experienced this beer on tap many times, but this was actually my first time buying a 6 pack of this stuff. I cannot believe the exorbitant price of hops. Oh well...

A: Pours a lustorous fuzzy golden orange. Sugary lacing. 3 cm foam cap.

S: Very aromatic, sweet, hoppy, fresh pine, and citrus.

T: Up front are pungent citrus hops, then the sweet malt is discernable only to be erased by an extensive bitter honey dryness. The hops are real clean and intense. Love it with the exception of the overly sweet aftertaste.

M: This guy is medium built, 5'8", good.

D: Too many of these and I'd get slammed drunk. Really enjoy this beer and will seek it out, probably on tap more than trying to purchase a 6 pack. Great IPA, just have a slight aversion to the cloying aftertaste.

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Photo of katiebecck
4.62/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tried this beer for the first time this year at D's Six Pax and Dogz in Pittsburgh, I was thrilled to find it there on tap. Arrived at the table a beautiful golden orange with nice lacing on the pint glass. The nose is so tremendous, I just had to share it with those sitting at the table with me, and all agreed - very hoppy and floral, with notes of fruit, especially pineapple. The taste didn't disappoint, with a great deal of fruity hops on the tongue right off the bat. Finishes off so smoothly that you'd never know about the high ABV. Feels smooth and creamy in the mouth, extreme drinkability - enough so that I immediately went next door to buy a whole case for the fridge. Always look forward to the release of this beer.

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Photo of crashoveride
4.7/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer for the first time on tap at "Teresa's Next Door" in Wayne PA. It was part of their Double IPA day. It was poured into a 12 oz. goblet. The color was a deep reddish amber color with about an inch head. The nose was strong of hops and fruits. The taste was outstanding and tastes as good as it smells. It is often compared to Russian River's Pliny the Elder but Bells has been more consistent with flavor and appearance. The drink ability was excellent and I ended up having 3 glasses :). A highly recommended double IPA!

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Photo of sweetbrew82
4.87/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. into a snifter/ no freshness date

P: Yellow from the bottle, and sits an appetizing apricot color in the glass. The white crown rises 1 finger high and is not quite as thick & creamy as other top-flight DIPA's, but still looks good. It was gone quickly, though, and settled to form a chunky halo while leaving loads of sticky lace behind.

A: Whoa! Aromatics just explode out of the bottle upon opening. One of the most explosively tropical-smelling DIPA's I've come across. Smells like sweet oranges, clementines, lots of peaches, melon, pineapple and caramel.

T: Triple IPA? Yeah, I'll go with that, wholeheartedly! Hopslam delivers a tsunami of citrus & tropical-flavored hops that brings tears to this hopheads' eyes. I swear, the malt is hardly even detectable underneath the onslaught of humulus lupulus. Seems to be more citrusy-sweet in the start with oranges, clementines, and tangerines. Then, tropical flavors burst onto the scene with peaches, melons, papayas, and pineapples. Caramel and a touch of honey lay underneath in supporting roles to help offset the intense hop attack. The IBU's have to be over 100, but somehow manage to be pretty gentle to the poor imbiber's tongue. It's more sweet in the start, but features a bitter dry finish that tingles the bitter region of the taste buds. Best of all, that whopping 10% ABV is undetectable aside from the slight warmth it provides to the back of the throat.

M & D: Medium-full bodied, thick & rich, and syrupy smooth. Drinkability is great, but that ABV is no joke!

Notes: This just may be the best DIPA that I've ever had the pleasure of drinking! I would stock up on this if I were in their distribution channels, for sure. In terms of DIPA's, they don't get any better than this. The sheer, unbridled brilliance that Hopslam delivers is absolutely amazing! Highly recommended

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Photo of Evan87
4.85/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on cask at Uncle Mike's. Thanks Bells!

I love this beer on draft but I am in love with this beer on cask.

A - This beer is probably a little prettier on draft, but still a great lookig beer on cask.

S - Smells sweet and citrusy. Love the smell.

T - The cask version seems to mute the hop twang a little, but also hides the alcohol as well. Maybe hides it a little too much, if you know what I mean.

M - Smooth and creamy.

D - This exceptional beer was a delight to have on cask. I could drink this beer every day, but definitely not all day.

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Photo of schroederm
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In a snifter:

Opaque pleasant golden honey color. The smell has tons of pineapple, some grapefruit, and a touch of cranberry. Taste starts with honey follows up with lemon and pineapple. The bitter's a little lower than I had hoped for. Not hot, but alcohol is there. Excellent body. Fine carb, well done. I seriously want more. Only thing against it is a slight taste of alcohol.

Overall: This is my favorite IPA at the moment. The pineapple is really awesome. I would do anything to see Bell's distribute to MA.

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Photo of schellsbeer
3.28/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to my friend Jim for buying me a pint at WB's this evening. Nice to find on tap here in our home town. Now, to the review...

A - Very nice. Pale yellow in coloring with a nice head.

S - Fruit and hops. Sweet smelling. A nice IPA but not the best.

T - Fruit with hops. I like a bitter IPA and this was a sweet IPA. Double IPA???? Not sure. According to BA, it is a double IPA but only because of the ABV was very high...not because of the flavor. Fruit dominates this beer. Bananas and Pineapple are very noticeable. Too much so if you ask me. Also, hops was not up to par. Hop Slam....not for me. More like a hop spittle. Was on tap so it was ultra fresh but not something that was over the top like most Imperial IPAs for sure.

M - Clean and refreshing but other than that....just good in my book.

D - High ABV and not that much hops, just average for me. Also, since this is only brewed on a seasonal level, not that impressive. I have had better. Sorry.

Now, before I get slammed from other BAs, remember this review is my opinion and not any one elses. I love bitter IPAs and this was not that bitter. Good at best. Will I seek this out? No, especially since I can get better IPAs at a much lower price. Just average in my book.

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Photo of thehand
4.28/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle into Samuel Smith pint glass. Bright clear golden orange, 1" frothy bone white head. Sticky spotty lacing remains along with a thick foamy cap of head. Aroma is sweet floral honey, earthy piney orangey citrus. Taste is outstanding, sweet floral honey up front, bitter grapefruit in the back, long bitter finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and full, finish is long and astringent. A glorious beer. So easy to drink if you love the hops.

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Photo of Brewno8it
4.97/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have only had this wonderful beer on tap. Not complaining, the best way to get it if you can.
The beer was poured in a classic Imperial Pint glass. The color was golden amber with a hint of a cherry color hue with a thick creamy head that clings to the glassware.

The smell is what I would describe as addictive. I wish I could find a candle to burn that smells as hoppy and complex as this brew. The beer smells of citrus and grapefruit with a nice whiff of sweetness.

The taste is so balanced of grapefruit, citrus, and honey. It has deep body and malty balance to blend with the herbal overtones.

The mouth has a feel of something so flavorful, balanced, and lightly carbonated that you want to hold it there forever. But swallowing does allow you to have a second pint!

It is hard to believe that this brew can be 10.2% alcohol. It is masterfully balanced and easy to drink. The aroma and feel are so wonderful that you can keep drinking. BE CAREFUL, it will sneak up on you because the alcohol is so "disguised" by the artistry within.

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Photo of bashiba
4.1/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a nice clear orange color with a thick and creamy long lasting off white head that left some nice sticky lacing.

I greatly enjoyed the smell with a nice bit of lemony hops, white pepper, and some buiscuity malt.

The flavor had a mild sweet biscuit and bready malt body with hints of pepper and alcohol finishing with a lightly minty and lemony bit of hops.

The mouthfeel was suprisingly thin for a beer of this strength and lacked a bit in the oily viscous quality that usually comes with a good double IPA.

I liked the flavor and found it extremely balanced and drinkable for such a big IPA, but I thought it was a bit underwhelming overall. I expected it to have a bit more pop to it and definitely more hops. Very good, but I was expecting exceptional, and especially a bit underwhelming with the very high price.

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Photo of puggy211
4.94/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

WOW BEER!....Still just smelling this beer anfet 3min..can't get enough....nice deep gold..white head...WOW wonderful hop nose..grafefruit...citrus oohh so good...WOW again..soooo goood nice mouth feel med carbionation...wonderfull balance...WOW nice linger of hops but not overpowering...I could drink this all day!...Thanks Megaman2006...
I am gonna have to get this again!

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Photo of Fearnofish
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had both bottle and on tap
poured light amber in color with a thick creamy head that stuck around for a long time

smelled of citrus almost grapefruit with a bit of sweetness

Even though it a strong grapefruit taste, you could still detect a hint of honey

mouthfeel was excellent with a light carbonation and a very clean finish. hop flavor does not linger

This ale is almost too drinkable because at 10% abv it's easy to get slammed

Found the draft to be better than the bottle because it seemed a little smoother. you would never know it was a 10%er

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Photo of tehstevo
4.42/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Was lucky enough to walk into my local distributor to be greeted by the 2 cases they would receive this year. Easy decision to pick one up. Took it home and poured into a glass after letting it warm on top the kegerator for 20min or so...

A - Poured a copper, not quite bronze color with a small head (even with a vigorous pour). Almost no lacing, which was surprising.

S - Smells of delicious hops with a little citrus and a hint of pine. I thought it hid the 10% ABV well (though I was feeling it).

T - Delicious. A great citrus-hop flavor.

M - Fairly light beer with light carbonation. Lightly coated my mouth with its delicious flavor.

D - Save for the high ABV, this could nearly be a session beer for me. Though it would be a real short session...

Fantastic beer. A real pleasure to sample (and for my first review)!

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Photo of armock
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks tjmodica for hooking me up with a bottle of this stuff.

A - Poured a copper color with an off white head that leaves lacing behing

S - Is a nose full of hops with a citrus and pine scent

T - Its like drinking hop juice excellent hops up front citrusy has a slightly sweet finish

M - This beer has a creamy smooth body with light carbonation to it

D - I didn't know this was a 10% abv beer until I found it here to review I don't think I've had a beer with this abv that was so drinkable I could have easily drank a few bottles without knowing better if I had them definitely worth seeking out to try

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Photo of smanders
3.97/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle into an American pint glass.

Appearance - copper colored with a firm head - gone quickly. Minimal lacing.

Smell - nice, hoppy nose (citrus, pine) with an attractive sweet background.

Taste - the amount of hops expected in a DIPA but with a pleasant honey sweetness vice maltiness. Very unique.

Mouthfeel - lots of effervescence with a long warming effect from the high alcohol content.

Drinkability - a bit sweeter than I normally prefer but a fine ale nonetheless. An interesting take on the DIPA style.

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Photo of locstir
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5


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Photo of mbunje
3.55/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into hi-tech Sam Adams glass

A - "Ale brewed with Honey" on the label...hmmm Pours a rich straw-yellow color. Small head that goes away quickly on a fairly rough pour. Very clear, medium carbonation.

S - Pleasant floral smell and sweet grapefruit. Maybe some lime. Makes me thristy. No sign of honey yet....

T - Wow...hopSLAM indeed. Lemongrass bitterness right away. Very drying and bitter. Almost a menthol like effect when you exhale. Interesting but overpowering.

MF - Medium bodied. Mouth is coated with hop oils. Very dry finish

D - I am a hop head and this is borderline too bitter for me on the taste. 10% ABV is well hidden. 1-2 12oz bottles is about all I could handle with this overpowering hop presence. Don't know the cost as this was a trade.

Overall, I don't like the grassy-type flavor of these hops. I am a west coast hop kinda guy and these are not west coast hops. Too bitter and grassy for me in flavor. Smell is very nice though, probably the best thing about this beer.

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Photo of ThePeskyDingo
4.97/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass. Clear amber color with a good carbonation. Poured with a half finger head that dissipates rather quickly.

Picked up a bit of a piney/hoppy smell. Also picked up some citrus smells.

Taste starts out bitter and hoppy, and ends pretty sweet with a hint of honey, which is also advertised on the label. The 10% alcohol is covered very well in this beer.

My mouth wants more... it feels very clean after the drink. Just the right amount of carbonation for the hoppy/sweet taste.

Very drinkable. i could drink this until i couldn't stand anymore. If i wasn't a broke college kid, i might drink this, and only this from January-February.

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Photo of RickKrumenacker
4.44/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Off-white two-finger head that stuck around for a decent amount of time...ends up hazy gold...lacing started strong, but really wasn't there by the end of the beer

S- Insane amounts of grapefruit...some tropical fruits as well...picked up on some earthy aromas when agitated

T- Bitter white grapefruit juice...sweetness as the beer warms...a little bit of honey

M- Smooth and creamy...medium body and carbonation...alcohol comes through but is expected...great hop bite at the back of my mouth

D- Probably as drinkable as you can get in a 10% DIPA...balance is outstanding, but can be dangerous in this beer

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Photo of JoeST
4.82/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well here I go with my very first review, & this is my last Hopslam other than what I have cellared away for a while.

Poured from 12oz bottle into my Duvel glass. I get a fine 1 finger head that dissipates rather quickly, within one minute. Smell is of a citrus/pine, strong hops with a slight hint of alcohol in the background, very pleasant.
Taste is a bitter sweet, a nice sweet flavor at first for me followed by a grapefruit bite in the end.
Mouth feel is somewhat creamy, just the right amount of carbonation, and a lingering but pleasant oily feel. May be due to the very fine carbonation caused from swirling & the glass itself.
Overall a very drinkable beer. I could drink this brew all night if it wasn't for the high ABV. Just A shame it's only a seasonal offering.

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Photo of coolchris1400
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ashleys in Ann Arbor, on tap. Great beer, taste smell and eveything else. On thing is for sure if that it's got a very green flavor, all those good hops. Currently I'm sitting in the bar typing this review and let me tell you" this is a serious brew"(Bigal723).

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Photo of Beerzebub
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Yetiman420 for trading me this one.

12oz bottle poured in a big wine glass at 50 F/ 10 C.

Bright hazy orange. Small cream colored head. Pretty, delicate lace.

Smells nice and hoppy - fresh pine, mixed citrus and tropical fruits, plenty of pineapple, and grassy green tea - along with honey and sweet grain. Straightforward and good.

Tastes like sugar cookies dipped in hop oil. Plenty of sweetness and plenty of bitterness. Full juicy hop flavor, mainly pineapple, fruit salad, pine, and grass. The hop flavor and bitterness gradually intensify. Some warming alcohol comes in. Long bittersweet fruity hop finish.

Bottle conditioning comes through nicely in the texture; these bubbles are tiny and smooth. Highly drinkable, despite the explicit alcohol.

Very tasty, I enjoyed this.

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Hopslam Ale from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
4.43 out of 5 based on 12,945 ratings.
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