Hop Devil Ale | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
2,499 Reviews
Hop Devil AleHop Devil Ale

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-27-2001

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,499 | Ratings: 7,195
Photo of budsboy
4.04/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with devilish-looking green hop monster and glowing red heat from behind. But, it's got that wonderful "V" for Victory too, so I'll forgive the gaudiness.

Pours a nearly clear (murkier than expected) light amber, small white head.

Hops comes to the nose in spades, and cinamon with a touch of fruit. All-in-all pleasing.

Taste is not as bosterous as I expected, but strong. Tangy and sharp, zippy and bitter. Hopped up and ready. Finishes with spice, going to the edge of a spiced beer, in fact. Good if your not in the mood, near nirvana if you are.

This was my second shot at HopDevil. My first happened to be had on the exact date printed as the "Best by" date on the bottle. The second was a good month before the best by date. There was a considerable difference. I've thrown out the first experience and based this review on the second. This brew mellows with age, but mellowness doesn't suit it. The fresher, the better.

Oh, yea ... Thanks to new member Hustlemuscle for the fresh brew.

 1,023 characters

Photo of UnionMade
4.85/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A wonderful hand pulled pint at Mug's Ale House in Brooklyn.
The beer arrives in a tall nonic pint. The liquid is a deep ruddy amber, topped with a short, creamy ivory head. Good clarity, with excellent head retention and gobs of lace sticking to the glass in rings.
The aroma reveals pungent grapefruity hops. Very citric, with some pine and herbal notes. A solid malt backbone with a sweet toastiness playing beneath the hops. A touch of caramel malt, with fragrant appley esters. Unbelievable balance, with every nuance in it's right place.
The flavor starts out with rich toasty malt. A light caramel flavor rides through, hoisting the hops through the finish. Just enough appley fruitiness comes through the middle, with a touch of pear. A robust grapefruity hop flavor edges it's way in rather early, quickly stealing the show in the finish. Light herbal and pine flavor comes through, but it's mostly a display of citric american hops. Moderate bitterness, but the balance never wavers. A touch of sweetish yeast in the aftertaste, with plenty of citric hop flavor. Very soft carbonation, just a light tingle on the tongue. Full bodied, with a very creamy cask conditioned mouthfeel. Top shelf.
IPA doesn't get much better than this. One of my all time favorites. I find myself craving this more than any other beer when I'm thirsty for a pint. This gets my gold star and red pencilled "great job!" with a big circled A+.

 1,433 characters

Photo of Sammy
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An amazing brew. A redish colour with a retaining head. Pleasant aroma, great choice late afternoon and before dinner as so tasty and inetresting on its own. A wake up call to the senses from the hops. Very popular with my mates. We all will have it again. Will tingle and numb the tongue. Was hoppy but mellower when had a year later on tap at Clark's Ale House.

 363 characters

Photo of JackTheRipper
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a crystal clear reddish amber color. Head disappeared pretty quickly, little lacing.

Smell: I was expecting an overwhelmingly grapefruity smell but was surprised at what I actually smell. Grapefruit, raisins, a little spice. Very nice.

Taste: Nicely bitter, hoppy, finishes with a nice bit of sweetness. Alcohol taste is just right.

Mouthfeel: Very full, not too overpowering, Carbonation is near perfection. Pleasantly warm on the way down.

Drinkability: it's up there, I've not been a fan of this type of beer until now.

I am pretty impressed as I sit here tasting this lovely brew. I can see why it's a top 50 beer. Very nice.

 662 characters

Photo of beerinator
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Ruby, caramel ruby. Offwhite retentive head with nice fine bubbles.

Aroma: Malty, with caramel breadyness. Citrusy fruit present in the nose. Very nice aroma for those who call themselves hopheads.

Taste: Fairly malty upfront. Hop flavor isn't as strong as would be expected from the aroma. Very clean beer. Hops and bitterness linger a bit but the mouthfeel and aftertaste blend together well.

Notes: Good beer. This particular bottle may have been mistreated, or a bit old. The hops just didn't seem to have the punch that I remember. I'll chalk this one up to be reviewed again at a later date.

 618 characters

Photo of yankeeheel
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

You can tell this is a different dog right from the pour.

When I think hoppy I have a pre-concieved notion of a yellow or plae ale. Not so here. Pours a beautiful amber with an appropraitely amber head. Lots of retention and lacing.

There is a distinct soapy-hoppy aroma that greets the nose but it doesn't scream out hops like I expected. The taste is what a well balanced beer is all about. There is a fair amount of caramel malt up front with a bold toasty middle with the hops waiting till the end to reveal themselves. Then they come in droves. It's almost a delayed hop bomb. They are slightly bitter, but not unpleasent.

The best hoppy beer I've had to date.

 676 characters

Photo of twilight
4.62/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Awww... A cute little hopdevil on the bottle. It's nice, and adds some fun to the seriousness of the beer. It pours a cloudy golden orange colour with a head that doesn't last at all. The smell- oh, the smell- it's like sticking your nose into a packet of hops when you homebrew. And that reminds me of the beauty of hops. I suppose I'll have to be a hopdevil worshipper for this one based solely on the smell. The taste is excellent, smooth and malty, and continuing to the bitterness of the hops while leaving a balanced, yet hoppily bitter, aftertaste in the mouth. It almost has citrusy overtones during the intense hop rush. I hadn't realized this was 6.7 ABV otherwise I'd have bought another for tonight. There's always tomorrow. With the grand rush of hops, I hoppily look forward to more intense IPA's.

 811 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Slightly cloudy orange-amber, more orange than most. The head is pale orange to light toffee in color and leaves wisps and small sheets of sticky lace as it falls. The nose is hoppy, but it isn't one-dimensional. Malt is appreciated, as is a certain spiciness.

The flavor is of hops and caramel malt. The hops win comfortably, but there's more malt than I'm used to in an American IPA. Those of you who like a strong malt presence or a balanced character in your IPAs will love it. Citrus fruit is front and center, especially grapefruit and orange peel.

The body/mouthfeel is medium-full and is nicely done. It's very slightly dry on the finish, which is where the hops assert themselves to an even greater extent.

Even though I like my IPAs to be slanted a little more toward the hoppy end of the scale, this is a very good beer and is one that I'll buy whenever I have the opportunity. Love the HopDevil on the label.

 925 characters

Photo of necoadam
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice color on this beer as it poured out a orange-goldish color with a head that quickly disappeared, but nice lacing all the way to the very end. Smell..whoa, they don't call it hopdevil ale for nothing. Tons of hops in the smell with some citrus which smells very refreshing. Taste was awesome. Hops attack your tongue then finishs off with some citrus at the end. Extremely refreshing. Finishes dry. This is a IPA done very well. Goes down smooth which leads to a high drinkability. I would recommend this beer for sure!

 523 characters

Photo of merlin48
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle with "enjoy by Mar 11 04" on the label. Pours a beautiful tangerine amber with a medium light beige head that quickly dissolves into a slick, with lacing all over the glass. The nose, ah yes, the nose. Plenty of hops here...pine, grapefruit, hay, spices, and some mountain meadow florals as well. Mouthfeel is chewy, and won't hardly let go. Thick and coating, with lots of bittering hops and medium carbonation. Hops dominate the flavor profile, but you can taste the malts underneath. This is one tasty IPA! Flavor just keeps improving toward room temperature, but it's all about the hops. Finishes dry and bitter, with a long and complex aftertaste. This is probably the best "standard" IPA I've ever tasted. Impressive ale!

 740 characters

Photo of CRJMellor
3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful amber nectar color with some reddish tints. small head developed with vigours pouring, produced nice lace. Very pleasnt hop aroma, oily, resiny, citrusy hops. Flavors was bitter as to be expected but along with pale malt on the back end. I felt a slightly gritty aftertaste, almost as if some gypsum was present. Decent beer but jus didn't have much balance for me to call great. I'd like to try it at the brewery to get a better idea of how it is fresh.

 472 characters

Photo of WesWes
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours an amber color with a frothy off-white head. The aroma is of hops galore. It has a cross between citrousy and floral hops; a very pleasant odor. The taste is outstanding. It has a good balance of pale and crystal malts which give it a nice mild maltiness. There is a wide array of hop additions here which adds to the flavor and it's uniqueness. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium bodied beer with good carbonation; an outstanding beer for hop lovers. This is a great drinking beer with lots of hops.

 518 characters

Photo of HiroProtagonist
4.21/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one was hazy with a lovely raspberry-red orange hue. The aroma was resiny hops and more hops, I knew this would be the kind of IPA I would like. Tastes of extreme hops with orange and lime citrus notes...a bit astringent. Sounds a bit harsh but it is quite delicious. Its mouthfeel was the weakpoint, a medium body but a bit thin for me for the style. The crispness was pleasant though. Overall a really beautiful and yummy hoppy IPA that I like to keep in stock in my fridge.

 481 characters

Photo of TastyTaste
4.78/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very intimidating. I have within the past year developed a taste for hoppy beers, that taste turned to love. This beer is over the top hoppy, I can't imagine what my tongue would've done when I first started drinking beer. This is very strongly flavored of grapefruit, pine, and spice, with very little malt (it may just be buried under all of those hops). Be ready for an experience if you are new to IPA's.

P.S. I had another one of these at cellar temp (my other samle was fridge temp). It definitely has an even stronger flavor, if that was possible. Definitely tastes more juicy and spicy. Try both,

 607 characters

Photo of putnam
4.23/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is easily the most rated beer (340 notes posted here as of this date) that I've ever reviewed. Frothy, elegant buttercream-colored mousse settles over the viscous, reddish liquid.
Noses full of candied citrus-flavored Washington hops appear first, then, after tasting, they produce a tarry, resinny bitterness equivalent to licorice or charred pine sap. Heady, perfumy, sweaty hop aromatics define the experience from the nostrils up. There's texture here, but, despite its grand scale and breadth, it is one that remains powdery in its slate/iron bitterness. One version of a far-too ubiquitous style I'm sorry to report.

 629 characters

Photo of drewbage
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from a 12 ounce brown bottle with no freshness date.

Beer pours bright orange with minimal haze with a large white fluffy head that sticks in the glass.

Aroma is spicy with sandalwood and mildly citrus hop with a dustiness in the end.

Flavor is sharp and resinous with a pleasant approach of hops that is balanced with a medium weight body that tastes like a good handful of biscuit malt and lends a large residual sweetness that is swept back off the tongue by a carbonation enhanced hop. Finish has a sharp acidic touch on the front of the tongue with a dollop of honey on the end of the tongue.

 617 characters

Photo of Gump
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hop Devil.
I braced myself for the worst. I didn't know what to expect, but with "Devil" in the name I was prepared for extreme spice and bitterness. It wasn't like that at all.

Instead I experienced a wonderfully hoppy, sweet tasting IPA that was not bitter.

It poured a mildy cloudy, dark honey color with a thick head and lingering lace.
Sweet smell of crisp cirtus, like green apple

Over time, this beer made my mouth dry. Maybe I'm not drinking enough :)

 470 characters

Photo of rajendra82
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out a clear amber to orange with a look of sweet tea, The moderate sized head settled down to a thin collar of bubbles that left a good amount of clingy lace. The aroma is fairly mild piney hops with citrus notes. Tasted sweet and crisp with a slick oily mouthfeel. The finish is dry with a more distinct hop aftertaste. Very tasty and drinkable, but not bold enough to justify the name HopDevil . Very nicely balcanced, and would serve as a great introduction to microbrews for someone perpetually sucking on macro swill. Thanks resirob for sending it down south as a part of the 2003 Holiday beer exchange. If I could get this locally, I'd drink it fairly regularly.

 675 characters

Photo of Naerhu
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange amber with a thin tan off white head.
Herbal hoppy medicinal aroma
The flavor much more reserved than what I was expecting, but still wonderfully hoppy.
Cola, earth with banana nut bread and orange rind bitterness.
Thick and smooth and lightly carbonated.

 266 characters

Photo of FranklinPCombs
4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a wonderful brew. Out of the bottle, it poured a mellow honey color, with very little head. It receded into a patchy foam, and there was very little lace. The smell was that of hops burried beneath fruity aromas, almost grapee. There is a hint of pine and malt flavors in the smell also. The mouthfeel is smooth on the front of the tongue, but by the time it reaches the back of your throat it is very sharp. This brew truely plays on your palate. Feeling this go down my throat was one of my favorite parts of drinking it. The broad full flavor of hops is the first flavor that is recognizable after the mouthfeel wears off and the flavors take over. A taste mildly resembling pine sap is also present, probaly from the hops. A slight fruity undertone is there, reminiscent of that of the smell. The whole body of flavor mellows into a slighty burnt, woodsy aftertaste which persists long after the beer is done. This is one fine brew, especially when enjoyed in good company.

 985 characters

Photo of woemad
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased at Jim's Homebrew in Spokane for $2.07. Slightly weathered looking label, which commands the drinker to "enjoy by Jan 11 04." This is the first offering by Victory that I have seen in my area. Perhaps I will find Storm King around here one of these days!
Poured a cloudy copper color, with an almost nonexistent white head that dissipated in seconds, though a collar of foam remained. The smell is of robust, floral, spicy hops and sweet malts. The taste is of mildly swet malts and crisp, spicy hops that finish with a very dry character. The balance between the hops and the malt is nice, with the hops taking the dominant role, of course. Nice, oily, moderately creamy mouthfeel. This is a very enjoyable IPA, well balanced, and very drinkable. This would be very nice on a hot day. Right now, in cold Spokane, I am endeavoring to convince myself it is 80 degress with the help of this beer.

 913 characters

Photo of theozag
4.52/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

In a word, I found HopDevil Ale to be nothing short of splendid.

Pours so pristinely that the platinum-blonde heads seems to simpyl appear over the beer without any agitation at all. The brew itself is a milky, medium amber from bottle to stomach. Smells of sweet summer breezes and roasted bitterness. Take it from someone with a weak sense of smell, this one is sure to impress. Starts crisp and smooth, but washes over the tongue with lots of bitter flavor in very short order. A full-bodied brew, HopDevil delivers everything you expect from a great IPA: hops, hops, and more hops (with a bit of caramel and creme flavors thrown in for good measure). Finishes rough, bitter, and dry but more drinkable than the average IPA because it leaves only a pleasant aftertaste and feels good rolling down the throat.

Overall, probably my favorite IPA to date. If you're ever close to the Victory HQ, I suggest you take a detour and pick up a couple of bottles.

 962 characters

Photo of Weissenheimer
3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Victory Hop Devil is a slightly hazy beer with the color of a copper pipe that was new a few years ago but is now oxidized. Satisfyingly frothy and bubbly, the medium-sized head quickly begins to dimple. As I drink, it leaves horizontal ridges of lacing on the glass. Although these ridges eventually collapse, quite a bit of the lacing is still there when the glass is finished.

The pleasantly fresh, floral, moderately hoppy scent reminds me of a bouquet of wildflowers - not the really fragrant kind, but the kind most people think of as weeds. It's nicely balanced, and not as redolent of hops as I'd expected.

The initial taste is one of mild spices - again, not what I was expecting. I'm quite surprised to find that it reminds me of the subdued spiciness of Penn Brewery's "St. Nikolaus Bock" (listed on BA as St. Nick Bock). Of course the Hop Devil has more hops than the St. Nick, and to its credit the spices and hops are very well balanced. But the bottle says "menacingly delicious" and - I'm sorry, but it's far from menacing. In fact I'd call it timid.

The first bottle I tried was past its freshness date, so I held off on this review until I'd gotten hold of an unquestionably fresh bottle. The above applies to both bottles, the below to each bottle in turn.

FIRST BOTTLE: I get the strong impression that this beer suffers from an identity crisis. It wants to be both hoppy and spicy, but it's not memorably spicy and the slightly flat and cloying hop flavor is not snappy enough. The more I drink the more I see it as a wimpy version of Rogue's "Santa's Private Reserve." The kicker was that I reviewed it over a nice roast beef sandwich with marinated fresh mozarella, and the sandwich and the beer didn't even know they were in the same room! Shouldn't a beer called "Hop Devil" be hoppy enough to pair up satisfyingly with a sandwich?

SECOND BOTTLE: The odd thing was that this one (the definitely fresh one) looked less fresh than the first; it had almost no head. However, with this one I didn't get the sense that the hops had gone flat. It was just hoppy enough to be mildly satisfying in the way in which it played off the sandwich. Still bloody disappointing for a beer called "Hop Devil", but... just sayin'.

 2,252 characters

Photo of Gusler
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It’s been almost a year since I sampled this “Elixir of Life”, and Victory is in my top 10 all time favorite breweries, just so damn many fine beers, and only one mouth.

An unclouded deep amber to copper color as it mellows away in my glass, the head portly in size, semi-creamy in texture and the color a beauteous light tan with the resultant lace a satin like sheet to cover the glass. The rich aroma of the hops, crisp and fresh with a sweet malt backing, what a treat for the senses, start is rich in malt, sweet with the top middling in its feel to the palate. Finish is peacefully acidic, the hops masterful in their spiciness, dry as a desert bone aftertaste that takes the hops till the very last drop, one damn fine brewery, one double damn good beer.

 767 characters

Photo of DagFishHead
4.59/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Slightly hazy bright orange-amber pour. Thick, frothy, lacy light-tan head subsides quickly but not completely.
Smell: Flowery intense cascade hops, sweet malt background. Perhaps the standard for American-style IPA nose.
Taste: Exceptional balance between hops and malt. Sweet caramel malt followed by acidic hop bitterness concluding with a crisp, dry flower/citrus finish.
Mouthfeel: Just slightly thin. Malt is slick and hops are delightfully oily and drying. Carbonation is crisp and helps deliver the hoppy oiliness to the old tastebuds.
Drinkability: A super IPA.

 586 characters

Hop Devil Ale from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.06 out of 5 based on 7,195 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!