Smooth Hoperator | Stoudts Brewing Co.

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Smooth HoperatorSmooth Hoperator
Very Good
472 Ratings
Smooth HoperatorSmooth Hoperator

Brewed by:
Stoudts Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: German Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by leftmindedrighty on 05-05-2007

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 472 |  Reviews: 265
Photo of jdhilt
3.41/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a four finger light tan head that fades very slowly leaving a good lace. Almost clear red/amber color. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Light piney nose. Flavor is a hoppy burnt sugar with some lingering aftertaste. Unusual dopplebock. $2.25 for a 12oz bottle from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

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Photo of JayQue
3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was really good. Because of the name, I didn't know it was a Dopplebock until after I bought it. Poured into a pint glass with a clear amber color with a big, pillowy head that looked light tan at first pour, then off white after that. Head retention is good, lacing is thick.

Smell is malty and biscuity malts. Taste is the same, but there is some subtle hops balance that cuts the sweetness and gives the beer a crisp overall flavor and mouthfeel.

Mouthfeel is crisp and fairly rich. Not much evidence of a bready "meal in a glass" that some good dopplebocks provide.

Drinkability is good, probably better than a classic dopplebock. It is lighter and crisper than some. Very tasty and worthy of more than one 12 oz bottle.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.01/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This jumped out at me on the shelf because of the label, and because it was Stoudt's doing what I thought was a hop-centric beer. Then I find out via this site that it's a doppelbock. Or is it? It does have a goat on the label, and it does end in "-or". Hmm...

This is a gorgeous beer: the head is creamy and fluffy, thick and clingy. You can just tell there's going to be a ton of lace before the head starts thinning and any liquid is gone (and there is--absolute SHEETS of the stuff). The color is a rusty burgundy-amber color, deep and jewel-like. Despite the big and long-lasting head, the color screams "barleywine."

Equal dose in the nose of big caramel and toffee malt with clean, floral hops brightness.

Whoa. This tastes like no other beer I've had. It's somewhere between a doppelbock, an IPA and a barleywine. It's not heavy of weight or syrupy in texture (the "smooth" part of the name, I guess); the hop bitterness is grassy and prominent; caramel and toffee come in right behind the hops. Light flash of burnt sugar; sour/unripe dark fruits (fig, green grapes). Actually, I'm hardly reminded of a doppelbock the longer I sit with it. Take Surly's Bitter Brewer and slam it against an imperial brown ale, and you've got Smooth Hoperator. Maybe.

A true hybrid, at least from what my own tongue says. Not sure how the brewer actually describes/classifies this. All I know is it gets an A+ for originality, although it's just a step or two away from blowing my mind. It's complex, bordering on confusing, but it avoids being a mess. Kudos to Stoudt's for the ingenuity that went into this one.

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Photo of drtth
4.47/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lightly chilled and poured into a Duvel glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: The beer pours out a clear dark reddish copper color with a fluffy ½" off-white/light tan head that recedes slowly, leaving behind a modest ring of foam and a bit of patchy foam on the surface. Sipping leaves a ring line of foam and patches of lacing that turn into legs and speckles. The lacing patches continue on sipping through much of the beer. By the end sipping leaves only light speckled lacing.

Smell: The aroma is a complex blend of herbal, almost earthy, hops set in a framework of dark caramel. There is also some roasted malt and possibly some alcohol.

Taste: The flavor has some nice citric/herbal hop flavors intermingling with the dark roasted caramel and some hints of dark chocolate from the malt that initially dominate the flavor. At any given time the flavor is quite complex. But just as you think you've got it worked out it changes on you. Furthermore the complexity continues across sips as the malts and hops ebb and flow in a quiet exchange of prominence in the flavor so that the flavor seems to change from sip to sip.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is medium-bodied, smooth and soft with modest carbonation that is fine, prickly and persists until the end of the beer. The finish is moderately long and ends in herbal hop bitterness the leaves one ready for another sip

Drinkability: The brewery points out that this is an American style doppelbock which means the malts are what you'd expect, but that American hops have been used instead of the noble hops found in most doppelbocks. I personally find this very interesting and drinkable and a nice variation on the classic style. I could easily have another (and another after that). I will definitely return to this beer, if only because I like it regardless of whether it fits "to style" or not. It actually seems to me to be the doppelbock that would be brewed in Europe if originators of the style had had American hops rather than noble hops to work with.

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Photo of paco1029384756
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice ruby amber color with one finger of creamy off white head.

Scent of hops, sweet malts, some candy, caramel, and hints of earth and chocolate.

Taste of caramel, faint hops, and grain. Nothing new or exciting, but is it still a tasty beer.

Mouthfeel is medium light bodied and a bit thin with good carbonation.

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Photo of beer2day
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber, with strong orange tints. Nice 2-finger head with great retention. Very nice large bits of lacing.

Big amber malt nose with piney hops present. Nose is also slightly sweet.

Hits the tongue with a nice estery feel. Slightly astringent. Malt takes over, then gives way to some decently floral hops. Caramel comes in at the end.

Very thick for the style.

Easy drinker.

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Photo of ATPete
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle

Pours a dirty orange brown color with a large orange/brown head. Big booming aromatic hops in the nose, lots of pine and bitter fruit. A very balanced beer, i was actually unaware of the style before searching to review, doppelbock? really? I could have swore DIPA to be honest. Either way, lots of rich caramel malts play nicely with the absurd amount of fresh, peppery hops dumped into this thing. Very nice indeed, wish they distributed this one? Do they distribute this one? This beer should be called enigma.

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Photo of Buggies
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice clear amber color with a huge head.

S: Nice hop aroma with some fruitiness. Smells great!

T: Mostly hops. Strange for a doppelbock, but there is definitely a malt presence. You also get a slight fruitiness there also. The finish is a little bitter.

This might be more of an APA to me. I've had this on tap and from a bottle. This is an awesome beer.

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Photo of nriech
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice copper color, good finger or two head. A bit of lacing

A bit of hops in the nose but nothing overwhelming. A little sweet.

Hops are balanced well with malts. Good amount of carbonation. A little sweet.

Definately not your standard doublebock but its not advertized that way. I think theres enough balance to make this appetizing to any serious beer drinker.

PS. I did get a slight burning sensation on my tounge from this, its lasted about 12 hrs so far. Havent figured that out yet.

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Photo of Risser09
3.72/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter - Fridge - Best by 8/25/09

Appearance: Pours a dark brown with ruby red highlights. The head rises 3/4" and is light cream in color. good retention and an ample amount of lace.

Smell: Citrus and pine hops jump out of the glass and smack the ol'factory right away. Underlying pale malt aroma that is sweet. Lots of hops.

Taste: Cereal grains, earthy hops and plenty of pinch. A hoppy flavor without much complexity.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, ample carbonation and a snappy hop bite. Actually kinda smooth.

Drinkability: A good beer, but not overly complex. A satisfying malty and hoppy beverage worth consuming in mass quantities. Salud.

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Photo of oberon
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Its great to see Stoudts down here in NC.Poured a lighter bronze color with a tight one finger white head that great lasting power sticking like glue to the glass as it settled very slowly.Wow what a hop presence for a doppelbock!Very citric in the nose mixed with some caramel sweetness and some toasted malt.A little prickly in the mouth but not to annoying.A hefty dose of citric hop flavors with some tropical fruit-likeness as well,toasty in the finish with a light sourness as well.Hmm interesting to say the least,being a hophead I love the hop profile albeit it seems outta place a little.

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Photo of IMincedTheKing
3.56/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear red amber with a big, clingy head.

There's an off-putting doughy scent in the nose with some redeeming hop presence.

Bold malt flavors hit the palate and then fade into a moderate doughy character. Drying hops pick up and linger through the finish. It's biscuity and a bit puckering, but not very interesting.

Meh. The ABV's a bit high, and taste-wise, this isn't for me.

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Photo of LauraAlberts
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Ruby Tawny hue - Great head retention throughout and nice lacing.

Smell: Honey, Malts, nice hoppy flavor, caramel

Taste: Tangerine, Chocolate Malt, Pineapple, Hops, Grapefruit, citrus on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Verrry Smooth. Soft tannins - nice medium bodied

Drinkability: Most drinkable doppelbock I've enjoyed. An IPA lovers doppelbock. Very tasty - I highly recommend.

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Photo of kwakwhore
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper colored pour into a Sam Adams Boston Lager Glass. One inch cream/light tan colored head with excellent retention and a collar of lace around the glass.
Smells initially of sweet fruits but mixed with IPA like hops.
Initial shot of hops followed by malt flavors more typical of the style. Really delicious. more hops in the flavor than any doppelbock I've tried, but the hop/malt balance is very compelling.
Good amount of carbonation makes for lighter than normal mouthfeel. I'm not sure if it's true to style, but I like it. It gets creamier and smoother as it warms up.
Very easy to drink. A little bit of alcohol burn detracts a bit from drinkability.
This was a very pleasant surprise. One of the best beers from a brewery that has been on my radar for quite a while.

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Photo of grayburn
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a blasphemous concoction that just happens to be freaking delicious. If those monks would have had bigger hop gardens, all doppelbocks would be akin to this.

The beer pours a beautiful orange sunset with a creamy cap that laces and laces and laces and lasts.

The smell and taste are all american hopping....with a thick malty backbone. Excellent combination, almost like a thicker ipa, excellent.

The mouthfeel is thick and silky smooth. Lightly carbed, big bitter and chewy. Nice.

I could drink a bit of this, it is delicious.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Kind of funny I picked this beer to be my random six pack for the weekend, considering I strongly dislike bock's and doppelbocks, I looked it up on here and thought 'oh well looks like this one will be going to my dad after I try one'. Turns it it tastes like a delicious Double IPA! I don't see how this is in the bock category at all.. definitely a huge hop presence, maybe a bit more maltier than the average IPA/DIPA out there but this one is a nice bitter brew that goes down easy. Just disregard the style... it tastes like a DIPA.

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Photo of marvin213
2.63/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

It's more copper than bronze, and the two-finger head has lasting power. I must admit I'm skeptical about this one. Perhaps it's too many "Hop___"s here recently that have tried (in vain) to be Hopslam or Hop Stoopid. Thus far, nothing's close. Only after the pour do I realize it's a doppelbock. I guess it's appropriate to give a dopplebock a hoppy name? I judged from the name that I had an IPA--it surprised me by looking more like a red, but I'll chalk that up to the beer style misunderstanding.

Smell offers nothing of significance. Skepticism grows. It doesn't smell bad, but it doesn't smell good. It smells like an amber. I still feel like I'm dealing with more of a red (my ignorance about dopplebocks might be rearing its ugly head) and, quite frankly, I'm disappointed. A "Smooth Hoperator" with no hop aroma? I feel like I'm giving this beverage the benefit of the doubt with only an average rating.

I taste roasted malts. It's nothing to write home about. Even as I try to disregard the disappointment associated with my flawed expectations, I struggle to embrace anything in the taste of this beer. I take another sip and wonder how/why in the world this beer has earned an A- on this site. I detect maybe a tad of caramel sweetness that I figure is owed to the style. Though I haven't had many, I rank this lowest among the dopplebocks I've tasted. It's not sweet, not sour, not hoppy...there's nothing distinctive about it. In my book, that makes for a subpar beer.

The mouthfeel is a dry, malty one. Though I've divulged my knowledge on the style is limited, I'd guess this beer intended to be somthing it's not. I keep wondering how/why it got its name. As I look for positives, I offer that the carbonation level seems appropriate.

Drinkability is where I'll let the beer have it. "Smooth Hoperator" is a stupid name for this beer. If there's a pun worth associating with this beer, it should involve "malt" instead of "hop." It's not tough to drink, but it ain't smooth either. This might be my first Stoudts review and I know fans abound, but I've yet to encounter something worth remembering.

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Photo of Buebie
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to philbe311 for this extra. Freshness date of 8/25/09

Poured from a brown 12 oz bottle, into a snifter glass. 2 inches of white frothy head form on top, reduceing to a thick colar of retention. The color is a deep red amber with some orange copper tones. Very nice color on this. Lace is thin and spotty with long slick streaks down the glass.

Aroma of caramel, buttered popcorn, pinneaple and mango hops, bubblegum and a touch of a spicie rye bready toast aroma.

Mouthfeel is light and fluffy in the mouth, not sure how to describe the mouthfeel. I've only run into this feel on a few beers. But its like the carbonation has reacted with the agitation of the sip and created a light fluffy feeling in the mouth....foam like almost. I like it, its interesting and enjoyable. Carbonation comes in midway and tickles the toungue into the swallow.

Upfront its somwhat sweat and highly malty with caramel, toffee, buttery creamyness. Some mild chocoalte nibs into the swallow. Plenty more rye like qualities, its a little spicie. Alot of big toasted all grain bready flavors, picked up similarly in aroma.
Coming around to the swallow, bittering pine and semi sweet mango hops come around. Bitter grapefruit lingering through the finish.

Excellent brew! Its not hot, its well balanced and is very nice to look at, alot of deep rich colors.

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Photo of Brad007
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium copper color with a one-finger head into my glass. Looks about right for a doppelbock.

Aroma is full of floral hops with a hint of grapefruit. Wait, hops in a doppelbock? Am I dreaming here? This doesn't feel right. Otherwise, there is a good amount of sweet malt too in the nose.

Taste is full of floral, grapefruit-like hops with a bit of sweet malt in the middle. Feels a bit too hoppy for the style.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering sweet malt and hops. Inoffensive. Goes down good.

Hmm. I'm not sure how to rate this one. On one hand, it's too hoppy to be a doppelbock. On another hand, it's good, I like it. Wow. Tough choice. It drinks very well but I just can't rate it as a doppelbock. I blame it on the Celebrator and other doppelbocks I've had. Perhaps it's a classification mistake? Hmm.

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Photo of washburnkid
3.48/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Finger of beige frothy head over amber and dark copper. Good retention and some lacing.
S: Big bready and yeasty aromas right at the pour. Sweet malts in there, too. Esters of apple and dried figs come to mind.
T: Very similar to the aroma with those dark, dried fruit (fig and prune) esters coming to the fore. A very bready malt sense dominates. I'm not getting many hop characteristics. Is it just my bottle?
M: Nearly medium-bodied with some astringency.
D: I've never had a doppelbock like this one. I'm almost wondering if it was the bottle that was off? Either way, toning down the dried fruit just a notch would definitely make me like this one a bit more.

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Photo of blackie
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: lovely khaki head over a clear garnet colored lager, good retention and lacing

s: toasty vienna and munich malt body, lager-clean apple aromas, light sugars, crisp citrus hop nose, cleaner and more pilsner-like than is typical of doppelbocks, interesting hybridization of a toasty german lager with an american ipa style hopping

m: each sip brings a mouthful of delicately effervescent carbonation chasing the medium bodied lager down my gullet

t: german malts supply a dominant flavor of toasted bread, a little appley, malts much cleaner - and the hops more pronounced - than most versions, citrus-herbal hop flavor with a palate-cleansing bitterness

d: an interesting take on the style, and very drinkable

single from Grape & Gourmet, Virginia Beach, VA

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.76/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Extra in a trade from Treyrab. Thanks for the chance to try this. Pours as a nice burnished copper with a fairly light head and some scant lacing. Smells very malty and buttery with some noticeable diacetyl. Finishes somewhat nutty and with a bit of soy aroma. The taste is malty and firm, and thankfully the soy and diacetyl have disappeared. Very dry, and with a light taste of baked apples on the finish. The mouthfeel is bready and smooth, and overall this drinks pretty well. Not bad, but not my first choicee for a Doppelbock.

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Photo of mltobin
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at the Waterfront Ale House in New York City.
I was interested to see this offering from Stoudts on the chalkboard. I have had a few of their other beers in the past, but this was new to me.
The appearance is a light-medium amber tone with a one finger head that does not sit there for too long. The smell is not as strong as some other doppelbocks i have tried, smells of fruit and some hops. The taste is richer though, a taste that would nicely compliment a burger and fries. MF is hoppy, spicy, with an aftertaste that yearns for some water.

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Photo of czfreeman
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It has been quite some time since I have drank a good Dopplebock, and tasted this brew in a recent beer tasting, thought it was interesting and decided to review it properly
Pours out a suprisingly amber ale like color, nice ever-so-lightly tan head, extremly foamy, leaving delicate lacing as it slowly settles.
Upfront an inviting aroma of sweet malts, bready biscuits, lightly spiced, followed by a bracing wave of citric hoppiness. Rich amber malts meets a squeeze of fresh grapefruit juice. A nice sweet malty backbone provides just enough ground to keep this brew in definate distinction from a hoppy amber ale. It's a bit bigger, juicier, and full bodied.
Upfront on the palate caramelized malty sugars, followed by an unique experience of hoppiness I've never experienced in a Dopplebock. Grapefruit, mango, a lighter peppery finish, drying, long and lingering. Could this be the world's first light bodied dopplebock? Whatever it is, it's quite drinkable, as the contents of my glass rapidly diminish.
This reminds me of a way of Brooklyn's Hopfen-Weisse,in it's great European execution of standard of and skill, combined with a little New-Age twist. This is an extremely refreshing and great change to regular bock, which tends to be a bit sweet.
Stoudts continues on it's streak in my book with solid brew after solid brew.

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Photo of philbe311
4.01/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - One finger of tight compact tan head... Creamy lacing which clings to the sides of the glasses... Clean and perfectly translucent... A glossy glowing orangish amber... Lots of carbonation which starts slow at the bottom of the glass and gets much quicker by the top...

S - Not what I expected from a Doppelbock... Surprisingly upfront hoppy aroma... Citrus - a mix of grapefruit and mandarin oranges... The malt backbone is still clearly detectable with toasted malts and hints of caramel and toffee... A very faint herbal spiciness...

T - Wonderful flavor, but I'm not sure it's not what I equate with a Doppelbock... The toasted malt flavor is there, but it's buried under multiple layers of hopiness... Slightly buttery...

M - Medium to full bodied... Smooth and creamy with a distinctive hop bitterness... Slightly oily... Faint carbonation...

D - This is a very tough beer to judge... On one hand, it's a brilliant beer... On the other hand, I find this to be a poor representation of the Doppelbock style... Looks like a Doppelbock, but smells, tastes, and feels more like an American IPA... It's really an American IPA stuck in a Doppelbocks body... But at the end of the day, it's hard not to truly relish in this brewing craftsmanship...

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Smooth Hoperator from Stoudts Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.9 out of 5 with 472 ratings