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Longshot Friar Hop Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Longshot Friar Hop AleLongshot Friar Hop Ale
240 Ratings
Longshot Friar Hop AleLongshot Friar Hop Ale

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by silentjay on 03-17-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 240 |  Reviews: 185
Photo of ballz50401
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 12oz bottle. Served in a Duvel tulip. Best before 09/2011.

Appearance: Crystal clear copper. High carbonation with good head.

Smell: Very fruity aroma. Pears, apples, and oranges. Not a very bold hop aroma. Some caramel sweetness.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Very fruity with pear and orange. Peppery and spicey. Finishes sweet. Medium bodied with no alcohol presence.

Overall: Not a bad brew at 9% ABV. Could use a little less yeast esters and more hop character.

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Photo of mynie
3.03/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A hoppy Belgian. K.

Smells like medium noble hops and then some yeast that's just a little off in a weird way. It's--it's kinda like Orval, actually, only fresher and much more medicinal. Not *bad*, just off.

Tastes the same, sadly. It starts with a very pleasant hint of orange zest, but then that gets blasted away by the medicinal yeast. The hops come in near the end, but are nearly blotted out by the yeast.

This is very similar to old vintages of Rabid Rabbit and Rogue's Festivale. I don't know what it is, but lots of excellent American brewers have trouble with Belgian yeast strains. Like those beers, nothing about Friar Hop is bad, it's just a little too weird and it doesn't ever all come together.

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an over sized wine glass.

Look - copperish in color, clear, with about a finger or two of pale khaki-colored foam that dissipates somewhat quickly.

Smell - spiciness in general..and a little more malty. Some citrus tones, but I definitely smell the coriander.

Taste and Mouthfeel - definitely more hoppy in the taste, although I can't identify the kind of hop. I can still taste the coriander strongly. The citrus comes out much less. Bittersweet, but actually sweet at the initial step into the tasting, and then bitter throughout the rest of the process...strongest in the middle. Texture is very well-balanced.

Overall - a little more bitter than I usually care for, but still a very good brew. Not a terribly innovative brewing combination, but very interesting in the taste and definitely intriguing throughout the taste.

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Photo of babaracas
3.74/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear orange with one finger of off-white foam, fades quickly to a thin ring. A few blobs of lace left on the glass. Smell: citrus rind..orange, grapefruit; lightly toasted bread and slight pear. Peppery. Spices, though not explicitly coriander. Taste: spicy, citrus rind, clove, slightly alcoholic, sweet caramel, lightly toasted grain. Phenolic with a rindy citric hopping. At 9% and fairly sweet, I'd expect a heftier feel and this one is a bit thin.. Decent but didn't excite. Best by Sept 2011.

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Photo of chadu
3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a nice amber, clear with a low amount of carbonation. Head dissapates quickly and there

note os banana and clove on the nose... a small hint of alcohol.

Tastes way more like a Belgian Double or trappist than any sort of BIPA. Not getting the hops it needs to sell the BIPA style. It' a decent belgian, but very little hop forward character here.

It's a slick one, not heavy at all and it hides the alcohol. The mouthfeel should have a tiny more body IMHO.

I'm glad that this was in the sampler and it's a good beer in all but the Longshot winners last year were better.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.67/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a six pack of the new Longshot beers the other day at Total Beverage while passing through. Poured a deep bronze color with a pillowy 2 inch white head. Aromas of baking spice, coriander and mint. On the palate this one is medium bodied and crisp, with flavors of light Belgian yeast, spices and banana.

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Photo of Beejay
4.13/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Beautiful pinkish amber, crystal clear, with plenty of off white head. I really like the rose tint of this one.

S: Some light strawberry smells, and perhaps a touch of citrus. There is a bit of Belgian yeast character as well. A slight hop aroma in the finish comes out with pine notes.

T: Tasty. Carmel notes, with bread and raisons. Followed by a well rounded earthy/piney bitterness. There is a touch of booze in there, as well as some fruity flavors form the yeast. Nice.

M: Medium in body, the carbonation could be a bit higher, and it leaves the mouth with an almost oily texture. Definitely coats the mouth.

O: Tasty. I was actually surprised by how hoppy it isn't. There is a nice solid bitterness that comes through, but the focus of the flavor seems to be more on the malt and yeast. A lot of classic belgian flavors with the addition of just enough hops that you notice. Good work there fella.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Duvel tulip glass.

And now for another installment of "Man, I'm nowhere near as good a homebrewer as this guy!" We're gettin' there, though, believe you me. Anyway, this stuff pours a clear copper-russet topped by a finger of white foam. The nose comprises grapefruit, mandarin orange, light pine, and sweet, sweet caramel. The taste holds notes of grapefruit, orange peel, sharp lemon zest, caramel, light clove, and cardamom. A nearly harsh bitterness stabs in all knife-like and whatnot. It does detract. The body is a light-ish medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a somewhat dry finish. Overall, a pretty nice BIPA, though I think the hops and the yeast clash a bit on the tongue. It's not enough to completely torpedo this beer, but it also doesn't endear it to me, either.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.86/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear amber with 1 finger off-white frothy head. Big sheets of lacing on this one.

S - Bready malt, spicy yeast, peppery alcohol vapors, sweet citrus and various fruit aromas.

T - Sweet malt backed quickly by a shot of lemony grassy hops. Fruity yeast-candied pears and apples. Some hay notes mixed in. Finishes sweet and spicy drying out at the very end.

M - Full bodied, lively carbonation.

Not bad. Pretty good all around and does a great job of hiding the 9% ABV. A very nice looking beer.

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Photo of ncfranklin
3.91/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into a tulip. Belgian IPA you say?

A: Orange to amber with a nice finger head that laces well. Slightly translucent. Pretty good looking i must say.

S: Strong peppery spice and some hoppy citrus in the nose.

T: Spicy sweet. SOme orange peel, coriander mixes in with a citrusy lemon and buttery flavor.

M: Thick and a bit tacky, nice fullness.

D: I enjoyed this one. Alochol is hidden well, and for a take on the the style it's quite spicy. Hops could use a little boosting.

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Photo of DovaliHops
3.61/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, golden-amber color with a medium white head that disappears instantly. Scent is immediately Belgian yeast, quickly followed by sweet, sugary, floral notes. There is a bit of spiciness as well. Not much going on in the hop department. Taste is...not sure how much of a "Belgian IPA" this is... but it's pretty tasty. Up front I get floral flavors, quickly followed by sweet Belgian yeast and a lot of pepper. Then there are some other spices and fruity flavors...a lot of melon. There is also some orange peel and coriander. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and a bit sticky. Alcohol is very well-hidden. Drinkability is fairly high, as the sweetness could get to be too much after a while. Overall, this beer is not the best in it's style...or even close for that matter. It is a pretty tasty brew though.

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Photo of SickGnar
3.87/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Bright yet dark golden orangey amber with a few lazy bubbles. Okay size off-white / eggshell head. Fair for lacing, but there is a decent if spotty amount.

S: Estery in a fruity & floral way. Peppery & spicy (esp. cloves) notes too. Seems as much from hops and alcohol as yeast phenolics. But it definitely does have Belgian character. Funk with a slight sour note to the yeast aspect. Malts are background – juicy & grainy sweet Belgian pils with some caramel and hints of raisiny dark fruit. Reasonably aromatic.

T: Sort of a light Belgian amber done to trippel strength or a dark and thick and robust Trippel. Or maybe a hopped up imperial Belgian Pale. Not super characterful, but a bit of sweet cloves, some pepper / spicy (white pepper) phenolics, and a lesser bit of Belgian yeasty funk. Well hopped in a noble, spicey & peppery way – but a fair bit of citrus too. Though not overly bitter, it does have alpha in abundance, but leans more on hop flavor rather than bitterness. Nice fruity and juicy aspect. Sweet tangerine, light green apple, hint of cherry, a flash of citrus tartness, and some raisin on the back end. Quite the juicy mix. Hops gain an increasing touch of citrus at the end and into the finish. Belgian biscuit and lighter caramel malts with juicy sugar cookie pils sweetness. Spicy and peppery alcohol is clearly present, but not harsh or hot. Hops build as the brew is consumed.

M: A fair bit over average body, but pretty well attenuated. The carbonation is just a hair bit over average. So it feels that it leans toward the heavy without actually getting there. Some residual sugars try to poke through, but hoppy, spicy, and peppery aspects lead to an ultimately drying finish. Not surprisingly, there is some warming alcohol – but not overly so.

D: A nicely hopped Belgian style brew. Another “emerging” style, and one that seems hard to pull off. This one does darn okay. The hops, the malts, and the esters all stay juicy and mostly fruity. Spice, rind, pepper, and alcohol all play supporting roles. Nothing clashes and it is never harsh. A pleasant if potent brew.

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Photo of kmo1030
3.9/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours an attractive amber with a good sized white head, lacing.
the aroma is of bright citrusy hops, sort of orange-y or apricot-y. there's also corriander, and some yeast characteristics, leaning toward the clove end of the spectrum.
the flavor is less bitter than the nose might have let on. the bright citrusy notes are all here too though. it's pretty sweet, but i wouldn't say cloying. the high alcohol is pretty well hidden but for the wamrth in the thoat. the corriander shines through in the flavor too. it's got enough of a malt backbone to distinguish itself amongst the hops and yeast, with some carmelized characteristics.
the weighty on the palate, with a full body, but finely bubbled carbonation, the result of which is a pleasant smoothness.
overall, it a little more rich than i like my BIPAs, but it's a nice beer. it would have benefited form a little less sweetness and a little lighter body. in other words it doesn't deliver in the drinkability department despite being a good beer.

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Photo of JayS2629
3.97/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear amber with a white fluffy head that fades fast but leaves a small film and seafoam lace. the smell is of belgian yeast, mostly banana with hints of spice. Lots of honey faint bitter citrus and lemon notes. The taste is sweet, almost cloying, but subtle enough. Honey and caramel in the front. Not as much hops as expected. Somf floral and herbal notes. Lemon pepper, coriander and orange peel. Smooth, fruity, and subtle spice. Honey notes and caramel. A bit on the sweet side. Subtle enough to be smooth and easy to drink.

Extra points: This is 9%??? Could have fooled me. Well done on hiding it. No burn. Amazingly smooth and subtle for that high an ABV.

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Photo of DoctorDog
4.08/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A- Amber and brilliantly clear. Probably to aggressive of a pour results in a massive off-white head, which necessitates a multi-stage pour. Fades very slowly into a nice cap, leaving tons of sticky lacing. Excellent retention.

S- Belgian yeast and spicy notes. A hint of sweet pear.

T- Smooth, lightly sweet, pear-like flavors come first. Finishes with light Belgian yeast notes and a touch of spicy hops. All works together to a very pleasant effect.

M- Moderate carbonation with a medium full feel. Smooth.

O- Good. A flavorful, smooth, incredibly drinkable 9% beer...really nice.

Future outlook: Sam Adams Longshot stuff....does right by me again. I think I need to grab another 6'er of it. While I always make allowances for personal differences in subjective matters like a beer's rating, I'm actually surprised that this beer isn't rated a little higher.

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Photo of zdk9
3.25/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Into the Duvel glass- Belgian glassware for a Belgian inspired beer. Color is bronze-gold combo. There's a finger of head after an aggressive pour, which is colored white with a grey tint.

S- A good whiff of yeast comes off first. There's some turbinado sugar, bottle cap wax, mustiness, old dried orange peel.

T- Taste is sweet. Wow, really sweet. This is supposed be have some hop love? I'm not getting it. There's a simple syrup feel to this. Like a honey-vodka flavored simple syrup. Spice comes out more as it warms- sweet pepper, cinnamon. Maybe some lemon.

M- Too sweet. Alcohol is fairly well hidden. I can tell it's there but not super powerful for a 9%er.

O- Aroma is good but the taste is too sweet and simple in this beer.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
3.73/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Best before September 2011

A - A pretty and vibrant copper body with a loose off-white towards yellow head. Pretty good look.

S - Banana bread, Zesty citrus, peppery spice. I feel like it's a bit lacking in hops here, but it does smell pretty good.

T - It's really malty, sweet banana bread flavors, a bit of pungent dry and bitterness on the swallow. I was expecting something hoppier, and I think that's what should be here. Hops are really only coming through on the finish, which blends together with the spiciness and all becomes a bit muddled. Not bad tasting, but I might think of this more as a BSPA.

M - Big, fairly viscous body, quite smooth, and carbonation is not offensive. A good feel.

O (D) - It's pretty drinkable, and it is good tasting. I think it's just a little bit confused, is all.

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Photo of PicoPapa
3/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle with a Best Before Date of Sep 2011. Pours a translucent orange color with a thin head. Some lacing. Aromas of yeast, banana, and bread. Smells a bit sour. Tastes bready and sour. Not really picking up on any hops. Slightly earthy with some cut grass as well. Lots of sour yeast flavor. High ABV but doesn't really taste like it. Not really digging this one. I taste the "Belgian" but not the "IPA" part. I tried it and I'm moving on.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.67/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle 

A- Poured into a Samuel Adams pint glass. Pours a golden orange color with a nice off-white head.

S- The aroma is fruity with some spices and Belgian yeast with some hops as well. 

T- The taste is malt and sweet caramel with a good amount of spices and hops with some warmth from the alcohol in the finish. 

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, I enjoyed this one. Good job on this beer, worth a try. 

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Photo of BB1313
2.76/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Best before September 2011. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a transparent amber/burnt orange, decent head and nice lacing; pretty good looking brew. The aromas aren't bad, but I'd never guess it was a Belgian IPA. The aromas are dominated by the yeast.. the hops aren't detected in the aromas at all. I'm a little let down by the flavors.. lots of yeast and candied sugars.. the hops are present, but take a back seat. This just isn't a good example of a hoppy Belgian/Belgian IPA, IMHO. There are hints of caramel and lots of malts. I'm disappointed because the hops fall flat. The mouthfeel is very nice.. feels heavy, thick, smooth, and not over-carbonated. The alcohol goes unnoticed. Overall, this isn't a bad beer.. but not what I look for in the style. Taste is king, and this one is slightly off.

Props to Richard Roper.. I don't brew beer at this point, so it's better than anything I can brew!

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Photo of Mosstrooper
4.06/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a 16oz Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance: Pours golden-orange in color with a slight amber hue and a large off-white head that dissipates very slowly and yields large, thick spots of lace.

Smell: Musty Belgian farmhouse yeast aromas are predominant with a fruity/citrusy backing.

Taste: Begins citric and somewhat musty, before rounding out to a yeasty, very 'Belgian' flavor and finishing with a balanced hop bitterness. I would have never guessed from the flavor, though that the ABV is 9%.

Mouthfeel: Medium in body with light, very natural carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: While this could do with a bit more hop-forwardness, this is an extremely enjoyable and deceptively drinkable beer. It definitely has a great Belgian feel about it and is true to the style. It is too bad that this beer is a one-off.

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Photo of gdrydenc
3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a medium amber color, with a good solid finger of light tan head. The head persists for a while, with good lacing. Good looking beer.

S - Belgian yeast smells dominate for me. A spicy hop feel is definitely also present.

T - Wow, that spiciness from before comes out quite strong. I didn't detect it in the smell, but the alcohol is certainly present.

M - The alcohol lingers in my mouth a long time, which is something that turns me off slightly. The carbonation is just about right.

Overall, this is a relatively good brew. The alcohol hotness detracts partially for me. Other than that, I like the spiciness.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden yellow-copper color with a fingers worth of head that fades fairly quickly

S: Definitely pick up the belgian spicy notes, along with light hops and some malt

T: The spicy yeast is the thing that sticks out in the taste department, along with peppery alcohol and very slight hop notes. The spiciness from the belgian yeast and pepperiness from the alcohol go well together, but the hops are almost completely out of the picture

M: Light-medium body with moderately high carbonation play nicely with the alcohol

D/O: Easy to drink, especially for a 9%er. Great spring/summer beer that I'd enjoy more if it had a more pronounced hop profile. It is in the name after all

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Photo of donkeyrunner
2.53/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Clear copper color with a thin white chapeau. Le petit chapeau hangs around all glass long and leaves lacy sheets in it's wake. Very impressive.

Aroma is Ricola herbal cough drops, spicy bourbon caramel (not actual bourbon, but the distinctive caramel that's associated with it) and Grand Marnier syrupy sweet orange.

Eew. Sickeningly sweet herbal sweetness. Ghastly sweet like honey covered with Splenda. Bleh. Herbal spice and more bourbon-y caramel and orange syrup. Where's the promised "American hops?" Boo, hiss.

Mouthfeel is more Sam Adams than Belgian which is a bummer because SA ale yeast is slick, oily, and a hop killer.

More interesting than good, worst of this years Longshot.

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Photo of smcolw
3.71/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Impressive starting head, leaves plenty of spidery lace. The color is light amber. Crystal clear.

Sour, yeasty aroma; close to Belgian. Good citrus and pepper.

The pepper comes through in the flavor. The yeast is there but more mild in the taste. Good hop in the finish. The body is as one would expect.

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Longshot Friar Hop Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.61 out of 5 with 240 ratings
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