Hop Henge Experimental IPA | Deschutes Brewery

2,483 Ratings
Hop Henge Experimental IPAHop Henge Experimental IPA

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is their new version of Hop Henge Imperial IPA, the hops have been modified as of 1/2009.

Available: January to April
Alc. by Vol.: 8.5 - 9.0% range
IBUs: 95

Added by SurlyDuff on 01-21-2009

For Trade:
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Ratings: 2,483 |  Reviews: 841
Photo of climax
4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2011 version: best by 3/29/11
Consumed: 2/23/11

It pours a brilliant copper hue with excellent clarity. The head creeps up to a living mass of creamy froth. The retention is good, as are the notches and globs of lacing.

The nose is a cornucopia of fresh sweet and tart fruit, predominately pineapple and pink grapefruit. Some herbal leafy flavor and bubblegum round out the hop profile and even some pumpkin and spice come through as a bonus. The malt has a known presence, but never outshines the protagonist hops. Sweet caramel and buttery biscuits add the final dimension. 9% ABV? Would have never thought, it's hidden very well.

The flavor had the same blast of fruity sweet and sour tones. The malt sweetness is a bit higher in the taste than the nose, but the nod still easily goes to the bittering units. It's like the first chew of a fresh cube of Double Bubble and a mouthful of citrus and tropical fruit. The grassy floral aftertaste lingers briefly before a pretty clean aftertaste.

The medium body has nice consistency. It's smooth with mellow carbonation, but enough snap to keep it crisp through all 22 ounces. The finish is slightly dry and pretty clean.

For a high hopped beer with 9% alcohol, this one sure is a wolf in sheep's clothing, it could sneak up on the best of us. It's very easy to drink, the flavor isn't so strong to steel the taste buds of the tongue, but more than enough to hide demons.

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Photo of camp0474
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from 12/17/10

A: Pours a crystal clear copper color with a nicely carbonated off-white head.

S: Hops! Sweet fruity smells and fresh grassy hops. Sweet smells of caramel from the malty backbone.

T: Fresh grassy hops and sweet caramel malts. Picking up some mint and maybe herbal green tea. Bitter oils linger and a bit boozy near the finish. Sweet malt does a pretty good job trying to balance out the intense hops.

M: Medium to thick syrup body. Slick from the oils. Goes down easy.

D: Good show for a hop forward DIPA. Very tasty and drinkable for this style. Lots of hop oils and higher abv make this an occasional one for me.

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Photo of rsdaugherty
3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz in a goblet
A - Clear amber & orange with a red hue, almost 2 finger head moderate dissipation
S - Freshly cut hay/grass, citrus, with floral overtones
T - Something about this is not letting me get away from the semi sweet cut hay/grass with citrus start to a bitter hop finish, I like but no love here
M - a big beer, smooth and creamy, in the middle zone on carbonation
D - a flavorful beer, 9% ABV is not readily apparent

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Photo of thagr81us
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to futura123 for this brew in a recent trade! Served from bottle into a Green Man snifter. Poured red-orange/amber with a one and a half finger off-white head that subsided to a half finger slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, citrus, citrus hop, and grapefruit. The flavor was of sweet malt, citrus, citrus hop, and slight alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. The alcohol flavor cuts out the nice flavors on this one unfortunately. Had a great aroma going on here. Good flavor as well (minus the alcohol aspect). If the alcohol aspect was covered up a little more with some sweetness this one would have been awesome. Still pretty good and really glad that I got to try it. I suggest you do the same...

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Photo of DovaliHops
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden-amber color with a large white head (with a hint of orange). Scent is very hoppy with citrus and melon aromas. I also get a bit of strawberry in the nose as well, which is interesting and inviting. Taste is VERY sweet. Maybe a little too sweet. I get citrus flavors (grapefruit and orange) as well as some melon and strawberry. I could see why this is known as "experimental" as it is different than most DIPAs I've had. There is less bittering hop flavor than expected. In fact the hops and malt seem to balance each other somewhat. Mouthfeel is nice, but a bit on the syrupy side. Drinkability is sort of high as this is a tasty beer, just some things are different. Definitely not one of the best attempts at a DIPA though.

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Photo of jlindros
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by 3/29/11

Pours a fizzy 1 finger head that fades at a medium pace, over clear peach tea orange colored beer.

Nose brings some nice fresh hops, lots of fruit, a touch of a lemony hop character, juicy tangerine and peach, light tropical fruits, and just a hint of sweet malts underneath.

Taste is interesting... it has that hop character still, fresh fruits, peaches and tangerines, bit tropical, slight lemon, but they're all dumbed down a bit, and flowing with a light oaky-like and light vanilla taste but I don't think there is actually oak in it, just an interesting rounding flavor of it, some creamy malts bringing a slight sweetness and just a hint of booze, the citrus and slight orange hops come through more on the finish, it doesn't dry as much as I would expect it to, and leaves a slight sticky feel, it starts fairly bitter and stays there most of the way, not ramping also as I expected it to do, with some malts on the finish as well. It has a slight aged hop flavor, reminding me somewhat of Burton Baton.

Mouth is medium bodied with decent carbonation, not much of a booze hit either.

Drink is decent, fairly bitter but not too much, it doesn't dry like I expected it to and it stays sticky a bit on the finish, the hop and malt character are balanced well, especially with that vanilla and oaky-like rounding character, but being 9% if def drinks better than that.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ShortSnoutBrew for this beer.
B/B date of 3/29/11. Poured in to Duvel tulip glass.

A - Poured a medium amber/orange colour; translucent. One finger of bubbly cream-coloured head.

S - Bitter hops with pine and grapefruit. Some sweet caramel balances out the nose. Seems to be some sweetness aside from the malts - some honey is detectable as well.

T - Very bitter up front with pine and citrus notes. A big sweet caramel malt backbone balances it out. The finish is bitter piney flavours that lingers.

M - Medium body, chewy. Moderate carbonation.

D- Remarkably drinkable for 9% ABV. Glad I traded for this one.

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Photo of Tripphop
3.3/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best before 3/29/11

Pours a deep gold with orange tint, frothy head that clings nicely. Aromas are muted, nice piney hops but a cardboardy smell. Flavor is nice, but the malt profile seems stale, hops are present and has a nice level of bitterness, but the cardboard comes back in the finish. A solid Deschutes offering but not my favorite.

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Photo of brotherloco
4.57/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've loved this beer since the first release, a good few years before I was writing reviews. This one is the 2011 bottle release. Best before 03/29/11

Pour is deep gold, mostly clear. Smells of common sweet fruit, apples and pears, a bit or orange, a touch of more exotic tropical citrus. Sweet malt sits in the background.

Taste delivers same but with immediate bitterness. Wonderful hop bitterness at that. Tropical citrus sits on top of a solid sweet caramel malt. Plenty of room for all these flavors though, mouthfeel doesn't get too thick. Finish is pleasant, relatively quick, and speaks to all the flavors tasted throughout.

ABV is really well hidden on this one. There is a bit of a sting on the finish, but it is flavor more than booze.

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Photo of d4114
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- One finger of off white head, orange to amber color, good amount of carbonation.

S- Good amount of hops and a malty sweetness

T- Sweet bitter at the front, slight citrus and malt sweetness in the middle then a dry bitter finish.

M- Medium body, not too heavy feeling and smooth

D- Very solid beer, super smooth for the 9% abv can't taste the alcohol at all, also very refreshing.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to tsatem for this bottle. Best by date: 03/29/2011

A - A crystal clear beautiful rosy copper color with a medium off-white head that settles to a thick ring and some bubbly patches on the surface. This looks fantastic.

S - creamy grapefruit, pine, and some balancing malt. It's a subtle situation, but pretty well balanced and good smells. I guess there's some diacetyl in there, but only a touch, and it's not overpowering.

T - Interesting fruit sweetness on the front, some black pepper, a very bitter finish. Theres a bit of astringency like mouthwash, and citrus hops. It's not really great, it's definitely different, but I don't think this experiment has succeeded that well.

M - big, fairly smooth, creamy. Just about right for a IIPa, i should say.

D - Despite this beer's non-ideal taste, it still tastes pretty good, and is pretty good for drinking, therefore.

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Photo of Ek0nomik
3.81/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured In: Tulip Glass
Purchased At: Ale Jail (St. Paul, MN)

Appearance: The pour is a deep amber color with three fingers of creamy, foamy, Got Milk? head. Maybe I just had an exceptional pour this evening, but pours like this are what warrant a 5 in appearance. The side of my glass is covered with lace. The beer is slightly effervescent with the bubbles taking on a wide area.

Smell: Sweet malt with a bit of alcohol warmth comes through on the nose. Tangerine and grapefruit represent the fruits at the table and a bit of grass comes through for the earthy supporters.

Taste: The tasting starts out with caramel and biscuit malt. The malt is sweet and chewy; it's upholding the hops that are now starting to come awake. Grapefruit, orange peel and a bit of grass and pine mixed in with some alcohol warmth take over the rest of the tasting. This is an excellent tasting the beer, but I can't help the think that a version of this with a lighter malt profile would be incredible. The sweetness and thickness of the malt, in my opinion, gets in the way of the hop bombardment that this beer brings.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied, the malt results in a bit of chewiness. Carbonation was spot on right after cracking the bottle.

Drinkability: Only one bomber of these in an evening for me, thanks. It's a beer that doesn't sneak up on you, the thickness of the body and the sweet malt on the palate makes it a beer that would be hard to have many of. However, this was a great tasting, and if Deschutes starts distributing in my neck of the woods it would end up in my crate again.

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Photo of hooliganlife
3.83/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a nice bright copper with a creamy like head. medium lacing on the sides and nice retention.

lots of pineapple mainly with some mixed in orange citrus, light alcohol, and sweet heavy malt

lots of orange citrus with a touch of pine. mainly tangerine, clementine, and light pineapple. touch of grapefruit citrus in the finish. nice malty flavor through out.

very full body. mild to moderate carbonation. bit of a sticky chewiness.

i had no idea this was a DIPA until i went to review it, however it makes sense. my only complaint is on the flavor, it seems like its lacking some depth. for a DIPA, it comes off as a bit older.

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Photo of Kakaraht
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours crisp orange with a thumb of white head that does not linger. Good lacing though.

S: Super citruy grapefruit aroma with lots of pine and floral notes. I also pick up a decent amount of malty notes as well as a slight spiciness.

T: I get malt up front very rich and caramel like, followed by an amazing plythora of hop flavors. The citrus is by far the most notable with a spicy grapefruit like essence. The bitterness is not overpowering at all, just perfect, well balanced with the malt, and the alcohol just present if I let the beer linger in my mouth.

M: Heavy body, nice carbonation, very rich and warm.

D: I was expecting a typical over hoped American IPA when I picked this out, boy am I glad I was wrong, this is an increadable IPA.

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Photo of dragonWhale
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

dark bronzed and sexy, citrus and pine pushing out of the glass with some nice sweet malt component. starts sweet and bitter then hops pop with a resinous twang resonating throughout my mouth. juicy, the citrus and pine are in terrific harmony with the sweetness. i don't remember enjoying this beer as much last year but this was very sexy.
And, as it turns out, an excellent companion to a mid-winter game of disc golf in the great NW.

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Photo of bballmj2k
4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2nd beer from Deschutes - hard to find on the East Coast. Black Butte was awesome so I've got high hopes for this one.

A - Gorgeous clear filtered ruby/orange. Vigorous pour yields 1.5-2 finger head. Not much carbonation in the bottom of the glass. Really beautiful.

S - Wow. Really reminds me of hopslam. Sweet tropical/citrus fruits - tangerine, orange, peach, mango. A little bit of resin at the end. Fantastic.

T - Huge bitterness up front, with a mellow sweet flavor in the middle and a nice malt backbone. Really similar to Hopslam with a bit more West Coast bitterness. Theres a flavor I can't place, similar to super fresh SN hemisphere flavor. Grassy, piney. Delicious.

M - Medium mouthfeel, medium carbonation. Doesn't really stick around the mouth too much but definitely dries the mouth out a bit.

D - High! What an awesome beer. Considering this managed to make it from Oregon to New Jersey and through the frigid Midwest and might (?) have frozen along the way this is great. Definitely a bit of alcohol taste that lingers but an overall great DIPA.

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Photo of tsatem
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber into a snifter. Best by 03/29/11 - I'm not entirely sure what's experimental about it.

A: Pours bright orange with a small head that fades very quickly. A few very small floaties suspended throughout. Looks just a little bit thin.

S: Very citrusy, in a sweet orangey way. There's also a little bit of sweet spice and an earthy malt grounding, but the sweet orange is very dominant and the hops are not very bitter here.

T: Mostly citrus sweetness with a zest bitterness. The bitterness is a lot more pronounced than in the nose. Mandarin orange. Pleasantly bitter and well balanced - malts are definitely backing up the hops and aren't very easily distinguishable, but definitely there in the background. A little bit of spice in the finish.

M: Very sticky, which is a little off-putting. I continue to have a strange sticky feeling throughout, but it is accompanied by a bitterness that makes it somewhat worthwhile. Carbonation is fairly low, but it works well with the body of the beer.

D: Quite refreshing. As I've said many times, it tastes like a sweet orange. On a nice warm day like today, this is hitting the spot and is very drinkable.

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Photo of spree92
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle stamped with Best Before 3/29/11. Red tinted amber. Slowly rising bubbles are constantly surfacing. I didn't have a good pour so the head is a little small, but that was my fault. Aroma is as balanced as one can get. Citrus hops, pine, honey, zesty peel and even some sweet sugar tickle the nostrils. Flavor-wise, there is a bite from the hops but a sweetness from the honey. The 9% ABV is masked by all the great character going on here. A slight amount of acidity rests in the stomach and gives this a heavy punch, which it should since it's a DIPA. 9%, can't tell from taste and hasn't hit me yet. Another great job by Deschutes.

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Photo of waterintobeer
4.48/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours an amber color with a red tint. The head that forms is about 1 finger. If this beer tastes anything like it looks, this is going to be a great beer.
The nose explodes into citrus fruit, a little grass note and some sweet malt. The taste is strong hops, more citrus that continues from the nose and a malt sweetness. There is a little too much carbonation for my taste, but does little to distract from this great beer. All in all, this is a great beer that I would recommended seeking out, as fresh as possible of course.

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Photo of Wisconsinality
3.67/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to kk73 for this one.

A- Pours a nice amber orange with a decent haze to it. It pours a small head, only about a finger, and recedes quickly and leaves little lacing on the side of the glass.

S- Mandarin oranges, clementines and a decent malt presence. There are also some other citrus notes and cracker notes.

T- Like the nose, citrus and oranges which is a little different but in a good way. A bready character from the malt rounds this one out.

M- Lighter bodied but doesn't fell thin like some beers. Dry on the finish but no real hop bitterness.

D- I was excited to try this beer and it didn't disappoint. I love the orange presence which you don't find much in a lot of IPA's.

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Photo of claspada
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aromas are initially hop centric with mainly citrus standing out with lesser amounts of grapefuit and flowery notes. Upon further whiff you get light caramel sweetness from the thick malt.
The taste begins with sweet orange rind, candy-like sweetness with some mild biscuit, herbal/flowery hops mixed with caramel. The bitterness is perfectly balanced despite the listed 95 IBUs. Alcohol is very disguised behind the sweetness, but the thick appearance indicates you aren't driving anywhere soon. My favorite part of this beer is how the bitterness and fading sweetness linger long into the aftertaste; swapping back and forth almost competing but in the end work harmonous together.
Mouthfeel is quite solid; moderately strong carbonation. Comes off pretty balanced. Bitterness sticks to the tongue in the finish.
Overall this is a great DIPA. The bitterness is never overpowering but the ABV creeps up on you if you consume too rapidly. The beer itself is very complex and interesting; highly recommended.

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Photo of stakem
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes taken on 12/29/10. Thanks go out to JohnGalt1 for the chance to try this one.

Split with Hoser81 and poured into a pair of snifters. This brew appears a perfectly clear, polished amber color. A finger of yellowish stained froth appears across the top. The hea retains well leaving leggy fingers of lace as it recedes. A swirl revives the cap to almost a finger's strength.

The aroma is composed of juice hop character smelling like grapefruit mixed with sweet citrus an fruits. A note of flowers, pine and grass evolve as the brew warms.

The taste includes a lot of hop character that tastes floral, fruity, pine-like and grassy. A long herbal bitterness tasting quite grassy resides in the mouth. There is a pleasant residual sweetness that balances this breakout and makes the fruity and moral aspects become quite bright. As this brew warms, it picks up a light candy sweetness that contrasts the fusel warming aspect in the throat.

This is a medium bodied offering with modest to light carbonation. It is lightly prickly on the tongue. Very drinkable and well balanced. The alcohol was not hidden in this brew but it was well incorporated. Worth a try for sure.

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Photo of Urbancaver
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish orange with lots of nice head. Great head retention and nice lacing. Smells very hoppy... Lots of grapefruit and citrus on the nose. Tastes strongly of grapefruit. Is a really well balanced beer, hops and malts couple nicely. Good mouthfeel and solid carbonation. A good beer

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Photo of brew3crew
4.27/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-amber in color and white lacing on the edges
S-good amount of citrus hops hit the nose upon first smell
T-alot like it smells. Very citrusy. Nicely smooth and I wish I could give it a 4.25 here instead of a 4
M-medium bodied and very smooth
D-wouldnt guess the abv on this at all.

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Photo of lnashsig
4.02/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Dfh snifter, about 3 fingers of head that receeds, leaving crazy lacing on the glass. Smell- deep pine, grapefruit, citrus, and some alcohol notes. Taste- bitter hops, followed by a sweet tropical fruit flavor, mixed with some nice alcohol burn. This isn't as well balanced as I would hope, and the alcohol isn't masked well, but its a massive hop bomb and I do enjoy it.

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Hop Henge Experimental IPA from Deschutes Brewery
4.1 out of 5 based on 2,483 ratings.
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