Hop Czar | BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub

388 Reviews
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Hop CzarHop Czar

Brewed by:
BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub
Oregon, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ccrida on 07-22-2008

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Reviews: 388 | Ratings: 1,051
Photo of Beaver13
3.08/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours a hazy golden orange with a small white head that quickly diminishes to a thin film that leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is sweet fruity hops with some resin and pine and a little tobacco.

The flavor is sweet bready malts initially with some fruits. It is followed by a big charred bitter finish that lingers. There's a little mint in there too. The mouthfeel is light to medium and fairly watery.

Overall, it has good bitterness, but I really didn't care for the hop flavors or the mouthfeel.

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Photo of unHipHopHead
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: pours a clear deep copper color with a good two finger off white head that hangs on for a while.

S: a pretty balanced aroma of hops and malt

T: something is off with the taste of this, its kind of tinny or metalic and the bitter from the hops is almost sour instead of crisp and refreshing. it mellows out a little after a few sips and starts to come together.

M: a good consistency and carbonation.

D: one is probably enough.

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Photo of allthatAles
4.43/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pour: Thick eggshell white head, thick not translucent, like an unfiltered IPA, Reddish-golden in hue.

Nose: almost grassy hops on the nose, a slight (bitter) cream.There is a sour yeasty characteristic to the the nose and the bottles carcass.

Mouth: Good & hoppy, a citrusy grapefruit type astringency. A good challenging Ale. Just a hint of malt at the begging. A light soapy coating spreads across the tongue about the middle of the flavor.

Really delightful. Especially for those lovers of strong ales. I believe this supports the idea of moderation, an Ale that fights and delgiths, the proverbial slap and tickle...yum!

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Photo of stephens101
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Golden-orange in color with a slight off-white head that wisps away quickly and leaves a few tiny fingers or lace behind. Nose is chalk and citrus hope with with some subtle spice and malt mixed in. Smooth and hot going down with a vein of sharp hops enveloped in some slight caramel and fruit sweetness. Medium to full-bodied and good for a hop fix.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.6/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle - $1.79 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a amber-orange body displaying nice clarity and topped with a sudsy, off-white head.

Smell: Well, it certainly smells hoppy, a bit like taking a whiff from a just-opened bag of hop pellets. Punchy notes of citrus, pine, and fresh flowers greet the nose. It's almost hard to even sniff out any of the modest malts lurking underneath the excessive hoppiness of it.

Taste: Pale malts with further malt tastes of bread and biscuits and with a very fleeting toffee-like sweetness (though the accumulating bitterness eventually cancels this out almost entirely). Staunch, coarse bitterness carries with it hop flavors of distilled flower nectar, citric Florida-grown oranges, and pine needles with a slight overall earthiness to it. Eventually, the malts give way, as do the hop flavors, leaving just a bold bitterness to ride out the dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Well, it goes down about easily as a 7.5% ABV, 87 IBU (according to my bottle) brew possibly, which is to say not so easily. I'm happy to have had it, though happier to have had it in this smaller, more sensibly sized twelve ounce version and not that foil-capped bomber.

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Photo of glid02
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Porter Beer Bar in Atlanta.

Pours a surprisingly dark copper color with a one-finger tan head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of grassy and pine hop aromas with small amounts of caramel malt and hints of soapiness. As it warms hints of butter enter into things as well, although it's far from overpowering.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Mildly sweet malt flavors up front are quickly overtaken by hop flavors that are more bitter than anything else, though pine flavors do manage to make an appearance. The bitterness intensifies through to the end of the sip.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a solid thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall I didn't go into this beer with high expectations and I was neither surprised nor disappointed. By no means a bad beer, there are a lot of better DIPA's out there.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ok, so all 3.5's. This is a bitter IPA, no question there. The pale malt is evident in the finish. No balance other than that.
Poured a slightly hazed, pale copper with minimal head. Still, it looks clean aside from the haze, which was not due to chilling (served at 43 degrees).
Grassy aroma. Astringent. Some faint lemon in there as well as pine. Mostly brown grass or hay.

Sharp bite. Not resiny or thick. Fairly thin with a bite. This one is very dry, alcohol kinda blends in with the bite to dig into the palate.

Overall, above average.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.46/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up during a recent trip to Austin.

Pours an orange color with a white head. The beer is very clear. The aroma is herbal and earthy hops. The flavor is bitter hops with some earthyness, hay, grass, pine and resin. Grassy aftertaste. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of webbcreative
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured golden amber color with white, 3 finger head. Aroma is
piney hops, reminds me of the majhera actually. Taste has the beginning of the majhera, it just doesn't deliver as such. Seems like it backs off just as it starts to get good, it has a nice bitterness but the nice piney citrusy flavor is lacking, as well as a big malt mody. Mouthfeel is thin for the style.

Overall this is a decent beer, but is greatly lacking in body and hop flavor. IPA? Sure. DIPA, I don't think so. I'm dissapoonted in his beer, especially considering how much I have loves everything else I have tried of theirs.

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Photo of tr4nc3d
2.24/5  rDev -37.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12fl oz bottle poured into my tulip

Pours a medium copper color with a one finger head. Head is slightly off-white with average head retention. As it subsides it leaves tiny whit bubbles on top and on the edges of the beer.

Smells kind of tart like. I do not know if its suppose to smell like it(think of black licorice?). Huge bubblegum smell when you take a deep whiff. That is all I get from the smell.

Slight sweet lemon like citrus taste with some medium hop bitterness in there. Sweet bubblegum like taste takes hold after this and then leads to a malt backbone. Overall mostly a bitterness taste is what this is.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied(although lacking flavor and unbalanced) with very high carbonation. Bitter dry aftertaste last for some time, way after you have taken your sip.

I have never smelled a beer that smelled so much like pink bubblegum. I now know why this beer is pretty darn cheap seeing its a DIPA. This lacks a huge amount of flavor to even be considered a DIPA let alone even a Pale Ale.I would pass on getting this and pick up a TRUE DIPA instead.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.04/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle. The color was orange, clear, looked decent and surprisingly was not cloudy like Bridgeport IPA. The smell was stinky like an ashtray with hops in it, I did not care for it. The flavor was astringent and bitter but not hoppy in a good way. Overall, this was kind of disappointing and difficult to drink.

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Photo of ugaterrapin
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass. It has a medium golden colored body with about two fingers of off white head sitting on top. The aroma has some piney herbal notes. There is an off smell as well that I can't put my finger on. The taste is almost all hops. The pine is definitely present on the front of the sip. There is almost a spoiled citrus taste to it which might be what I picked up in the aroma. The lack of malt gives it a very thin mouthfeel. The finish is lackluster as it leaves a unpleasant aftertaste. I am glad I was able to buy this as a single and didn't have to buy the entire 6-pack.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.31/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper color with a small white head, smell of dried grass, some very distant barn, grapefruit, pine and caramel.
Taste of extreme bitterness, a dry astringent bite, good carbonation, medium mouthfeel, grapefruit, grass, and caramel are prominent.

This is a nice American Double IPA, just not my favorite. I lean more towards the sweet double IPA's , but I think this one lends itself more to drinability the way it is without the sweetness.

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Photo of genek
3.21/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Buddy just found this beer at the local liquor shop, looked impressive.

A - Very attractive dark Amber malty color. Head came on rather thick, off white with rather large bubbles. No lacing to speak of. Slow and steady carbonation that held up the head for a bit.

S - Didn't catch much off of this one. Hops, maybe a bit of dry hay in the back.

T - Very impressive. Lots of caramely malts for a sticky sweetness that breaks into the hoppy bitterness that is most apparent. Can catch a slight bit of spice, just enough to round everything out and still keep the hops front and foremost.

M - Sticky sweetness but it still goes down smooth and silky.

D - As you'd expect of a 7.5% not too much. A few of these babies with make you happy.

Another impressive IPA, Sweeter than I like personally but well rounded.

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Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.31/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ok, so the first thing you need to consider with this beer is the price.

$7.99/6pk or $13.99/12pk

Yeah, its damn cheap.

Clear bronze body, smallish white head.

All hops on the nose, but quite the strange hop aroma. Flowers, hay, and manure. The flavor is just a stronger version of the aroma. Caramel malt, but just a dash. Huge on the hops. Grapefruit, orange zest, pine. Thankfully, the manure is gone, but there is an astringency in the finish I that leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

Hop Czar is spot on sometimes and miles from the mark at others. It has its good sides and its disappointing ones. It may not live up to its full potential, but then, if it did, it wouldn't be so damn affordable, now would it? Try it, see what you think. Its no Ruination, but it is half the price...

Post Script - I just read this aroma description from wagenvolks review and I had to repeat it:

"Like a bag of weed that your cat peed on after eating an entire grapefruit."

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Photo of rajendra82
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The body was pale bronze in color, and crowned with a three finger thick beige head. The aroma was earthy and herbal for the most part, with a bit of hay thrown in. The taste was quite dry and bitter, with some spicy notes as well. Not a lot of malt backbone, and relatively thin mouthfeel. Pretty easy to drink, but nondescript.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.82/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into an Andechs weizen glass.

Hop Czar displays a color on the thin side for a IIPA: brassy gold and lager-ish. Lots of carbonation percolating through the nearly clear body (slight hint of yeasty haze going on) to fuel a fleeting patch of eggshell-white head. Nice lacing, which one might expect given the high levels of hops present in the aroma. Very musty, funky, earthy, citrusy, skunky hops. Like a bag of weed that your cat peed on after eating an entire grapefruit.

Body is thin, but juicy with a lingering bitter hoppiness that constricts the tastebuds on the back of the tongue. Initially sweet up front with some pale malts and cotton candy. Minerals in the middle get a little sour thanks to a frothy carbonation level. Hop Czar is too bitter for too long, and something seems a little 'off' in the aftertaste. Still, it's a good beer when you need a hop fix. Worth a try, but not something I'd buy again given the plethora of tastier IIPA's on the market.

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Photo of jmbranum
3.87/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A monstrous beer. Not my favorite style but I'll take a stab at reviewing it.

Slighty hazy light amber colored with a short quickly disappearing head.

Fantastic hop-heavy aroma. Flavor is a mouthful. Lots of alcoholic warmth. Hops out the yazoo. Pine and spruce dominate.

Like most double IPA's I've had, it feels like too much. The hops are so dominant it is hard to pick up any subtlety.

Mouthfeel is rich and syrupy with bracing carbonation on the tongue.

Interesting. Definitely worth trying.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.71/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hop Czar used to bring it in every category. And maybe it still does, but the lack of bottle dating/fresh bottles seems to hurt its position. Amazing presentation, bright orange, bursting hop bouquet, massive floral arrangement in the nose.

Taste, more of the same, almost gave it a 5, would have if Pliny didn't exist. Not super hoppy just for the sake of inflating some IBU's, genuinely appreciable taste, but don't get me wrong, this is a hop blast.

Mouthfeel, hops hops and more hops, there's nothing particularly complex, but for its strength and style, very drinkable, but hey, its pricey.

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Photo of olympuszymurgus
4.07/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

bridgeport is one of the first breweries that led me to great flavor when i moved to the pac nw. i remember trying the blue heron, the ipa, the stout and really beginning to appreciate them. i moved on to bigger and brighter things. as i did so, i forgot the ones that got me here. but a visit to the brewhouse in portland a few weekends ago and a tour of their beautiful facilities and their lab space was revealing. they were running ibu tests on their latest batch of hop czar and finding an honest 91-95 ibus. this isn't some guess based on calculations and cracking one of these guys open reveals the truth within. a sharp bitterness slicing down the tongue, cutting directly through the malt. a wonderful bitterness, this is the ideal hop bitterness. dry like i wish my butt was. this could take more malt but doesn't have the sweetness most dipas bring. there's little hop flavor beyond the bitterness and general hoppiness. just a lingering bite that longs for companionship. nonetheless, a lovely beer that i will be drinking more of in the future.

never again will i underappreciate such fine crafted bottle conditioned beverages.

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Photo of feverscan
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

A- Thin head even with a pretty aggressive pour. Dissipates quickly. Light golden color. Don't see the haze others have mentioned.

S- Definitely hoppy upfront with a slight malt hint. Not much of the citrus hops I was expecting from an Oregon brewed beer. Slight astringent smell.

T- The initial flavor is actually very balanced quickly fading to the strong lingering hop bitterness you would expect from this style. Hops are dry and piney. Again, lacking the citrus I would expect. Somewhat of a strange aftertaste I can't place right now.

M- Smooth and lightly carbonated

D- High marks on this one. Hides the ABV very well. Only problem is the aftertaste on the breath (this coming from someone who carries a stick of gum to get rid of 'IPA breath')

Overall, a pretty good beer and relatively sessionable in spite of the ABV, but probably won't seek this one out again

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Photo of northaustin
3.96/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

poured into a pint glass. pours a darker golden amber with about a finger of white, even, fairly quickly disappearing head.

smell is great. big upfront citrusy hops are the star. followed by a quick whiff of well balanced and less intense earthy hops. classic.

taste is very similiar to modus hoperandi and hop devil and some lagunitas. alot of simcoe type hops overpowering a standard crystal malt bill. not bad but certainly nothing extraordinary and has caused me to lose a bit more faith in the phrase "imperial". still good and a must try for ipa lovers.

mouthfeel: standard hop oilyness. nothing new.

drinkability: very sessionable with a fairly high abv and at a very affordable price. i give this one a five.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.97/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass. My bottle indicates 7.5% ABV rather than the 8% listed above.

Appearance: clear, rich metallic gold color with just a tiny skin of white head. It looks like it means business.

Smell: big hop aroma with floral, earthy and funky notes. Malt aroma is all but undetectable, but it's a heady mix nonetheless. I quite like it.

Taste: you get what you expect based on the aroma, though the malt is a little more detectable. Hops range more toward the earthy side up front but with a very nice floral finish; the whole works is really quite bitter. It's a bit unsubtle, but it does hit the spot pretty well.

Mouthfeel: medium body with more carbonation than the head would lead you to believe. Actually, pretty good.

Drinkability: quite drinkable, and I can't decide if it is because of or in spite of its huge bitterness. One sure thing is, you can't detect the high alcohol under all those hops. This one could be dangerous.

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Photo of nomomentwasted
3.61/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at Bridgestone in the Pearl yesterday with an excellent smoky IPA pulled-pork sandwich, paired excellently. Served as a full pint in a pint glass.

Appearance: Apricot-amber orange with white head and relatively normal lacing. Head disappeared relatively quickly, leaving the slightest swirls on the crown.

Smell: Slightly citrus and pine, with a spicy hop undertone. This DIPA is not a Pliny-type, with more Chinook and Centennial backbone hops than a Simcoe or Amarillo. Smell is actually pretty mild all things considered, but an IPA it certainly is.

Taste: Straight-forward hop presence, but the flavors don't quite pop in the hop department. More mellow hoppy character for a DIPA, without much resinous and piny and more slightly grassy and a hint of citrus and a bit of spiciness. Malt backbone is very solid at 8% too, and the alcohol is present as an accompanying player. Bitterness is great, but the board claimed it was 85 IBUs, which seems in contrast to other claims of near 100.

Mouthfeel: Actually very pleasant. Bitterness plays a great role, and the alcohol presence doesn't really burn badly or anything. The spicy hop, the bite of the bitterness, the pale malt ever-slightly-sweetness, and carbonation are all spot-on.

Drinkability: Was easy to quaff at 8%, but there are DIPAs out there I'd prefer to this just due to a more robust flavor profile. If I'm drinking an IPA, I want the nose and taste to reflect that hoppiness, and the Czar, while tasty, is not quite enough to knockout a hop thirst.

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Photo of msubulldog25
3.61/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On the aimless stroll back to work, post-lunch on the first Friday of autumn (re: PERFECT weather) the BridgePort dock spoke to me. An imperial pint was all it asked, and so I obliged with a Hop Czar (on cask, no less). Hope you're happy, BP...

A: Caramel-orange, resplendent clarity, resting beneath a dense but shallow off-white meringue. Lacking visible carbonation, but that's 'cask' for ya... Creamy lace hangs in broken shards.

S: Hmmm...wanted this to be appealing and 'fresh', instead it's sorta 'wet cardboard' or 'compost binful of 3-day-old grass clippings'. Musty and worn-out is what I'm getting...too bad.

T: Grassy and spicy hops abound with a perky fruit tang that seems like 'dried apricots' on my palate (odd?). Pine resin that once may make been drippy is now subdued, sweeter.

M: Appropriately creamy, almost to a fault. So smooth and easy, body seems airy until a coating hop bitterness reveals itself a half-minute or so after each sip.

D: I've had Hop Czar a few times from bottle, draught and (now) cask; can't say cask is my favorite version but it could be the most 'drinkable'. Higher ABV tends to fade, aroma and flavor are transformed. One probably won't find this anywhere besides the brewery at this point; it's worth a try.

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Hop Czar from BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub
3.6 out of 5 based on 1,051 ratings.
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