Hop Henge Experimental IPA | Deschutes Brewery

841 Reviews
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:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 841 | Ratings: 2,481
Photo of ShaneHarris
4.87/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L: 10.5oz snifter, on the border between citrusy yellow and malty brown
S: a lot of citrus and hops
T: perfect balance of fruity, citrusy, malty, bitter
F: just smooth, and full-bodied, this one you'll enjoy swishing around in your mouth trying to get all the flavor out
O: This IPA is better than Heady Topper.

 311 characters

Photo of LilSebastianJr
2.33/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Disclaimer: bottle said it was Best By 4/7/15, 4 days from now. Maybe, like myself, it was better in its youth....

Not impressed. Is it hoppy? Yes. But of course it is, it's an IPA. The high abv seems derived form lesser malts, or perhaps malt extract. It is cloying, which is in direct competition with the big hops.

About those hops.... the profile of the hops seems a little muddled. It doesn't really seem to know what it wants to be.

Again, perhaps it was the age. I bought it from a carry out that sells home brew supplies and has one of the best local selections of beer (and best of all you have to walk into the cooler to but piss water.... I mean bud products, they are not even in sight in the store), so they probably took great care of the beer.

Paid a lot to be disappointed. Finishing it now just for the sheer abv and not waste the cash I spent on it.

 876 characters

Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I am drinking this from a 22 oz. bottle in a craft beer glass 6 weeks before its best by date.
A: Pours brilliant copper tinted amber under a very dense, finely bubbled 1” off white foam collar that hugs the side of the glass leaving thick ledges of lace marking each sip.
S: Citrus, pine, floral, herbal, light malt and light fruit somewhere between melon and tropical.
T: Has a juicy attack with the hoppy citrus flavors riding in on the foam over a light malt graham cracker body. As the foam and body meld together mid-palate the grapefruit and grapefruit rind bitterness come forward and carry the beer to the finish.
M: Creamy, juicy rich medium full body with a very soft, smooth carbonation.
O: A DIPA featuring a balance between hop citrus, fruit and floral flavors and yeast driven fruit flavors.

 814 characters

Photo of Chiefy770
4.01/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

1 Pint, 6 Fluid Ounce Bottle
"Best By" date of April 7th, 2015 printed on the label
Reviewed on March 26th, 2015
Served in an IPA Glass
(2014/2015 Release featuring Millennium, Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook Hops. ABV 9.5%)

Poured a dark gold body with a slight orange glow. Fluffy head formed, a little over an inch deep, collapsed, and left a tremendous amount of foamy lacing throughout.

Sweet notes of tropical fruit were prominent. Notes of grapefruit and lemon peel definitely suggested this brew had bitter tendencies. Herbal and spiced hops mingled with sweet toasted malts. I definitely picked up a whiff or two of alcohol as well.

Sweet and juicy hops hit the tongue first. Sweet notes of orange and pineapple took a tart turn, letting bitter notes of grapefruit and lemon break through. Earthier hops settled in the lower levels near the malts. Subtle notes of pine were followed by a very minor presence of toasted grains. Definitely a dry finish with a decent hit of alcohol. Medium bodied, leaning toward the full side of the spectrum. Moderate/low carbonation.

As far as DIPAs go, this one is certainly not "in your face" as far as hop intensity is concerned. Great focus on the middle tones of the hops, rather than the often overly-bitter takes on this style. My biggest beef with this brew would be the ABV... 9.3% and I definitely tasted it. Regardless, I am looking forward to next year's version!

 1,448 characters

Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.99/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into a Red Racer pint glass. A hazy brownish orange amber color with two fingers of resilient milk shake-like creamy white head.

Aroma is predominately tropical fruit with a less developed citrus note ... Pineapple, mango, papaya, orange, grapefruit, almost a hint of banana and coconut. Some bright pine needle notes but nothing overly medicinal. Equal parts gummy candy, dried fruit leather, and smoothie.

Taste features the same combination of features found on the nose ... Big tropical fruit smoothie flavors (including the aforementioned pina colada element), some grapefruit sourness, very crisp and refreshing with a pleasing fresh tropical fruit juice overlay. Not sure what these "experimental hops" are doing exactly but things are working out well. The malts are fairly sweet, recalling caramel and honey. Very smooth, almost creamy. Medium body, just grading into thick territory. Very low key resins. Bitter, but in a well-rounded refined sense. The Chinook spice is discernible but balanced out by Centennial candied citrus and mystery hop tropical flavors. Finishes on the sweet and fruity side. Almost a tinge of chocolate (?!)...

Compelling DIPA. Not a blunderbuss of pine resins and other dank elements ... Artfully fruity and overall on the sweet side.

 1,290 characters

Photo of JLaw55
3.5/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted from a bomber with a best by date of 4/07/2015.

I am torn on this one. One one hand, the flavors are nice and interesting. A nice mix of hops and tropical fruits, although leaning toward the hoppy and bitter side. Very pleasant look, smell, mouth feel, and main flavors.

Now for the bad part that has me torn, this one is boozy. Either dial back the alcohol or cover it up better. With a bottle labeled as 9.5% ABV, all of that alcohol presence shows. It detracts from the overall experience and leaves you with a warm sensation in your stomach.

Would Drink Again: No
Would Purchase Again: No

 603 characters

Photo of GoBeerGo
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dull gold with very persistent head. Aroma is strong, balanced and inviting. Malt aroma is of sweet grains and hops are strongest with notes of spice, citrus and slight resin. Tastes strongly of floral and spicey hops with faint notes of citrus, also faint sweet toast from the malt. Well balanced. Feels slick in the mouth, lighter bodied with close to lively, spritzy, carbonation. Finishes long and strong with a good balance between sweet and bitter, however leaning towards bitter. Good beer, very fresh.

 519 characters

Photo of Fatehunter
3.83/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a thin head on a hazy medium straw body.
The aroma is a big blend of citrus (all of them) plus some pine.
The taste is bold and complex. Moderate bitterness throughout held up by a big malt.
The texture is thick.
Really nice.

 231 characters

Photo of hreb
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle claims 9.5% ABV and best by 04/07/15. Served in a tulip glass. Golden orange color, lightly hazed, with an ample white head. Yeasty aroma. Orange peel, citrus. Really big citrus hop flavor, with an almost grapefruit-like astringency. This bottle conditioned XPA really is all about the hops. There's very little malt backbone, and I think I detect a bit of wheat, perhaps used to deliberately subdue malt flavor. Carbonation is on the high side in this bottle. As previously reported, all-day IPA enthusiasts will probably love this, but otherwise it's just ok.

 582 characters

Photo of frozen-1984
3.71/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good beer. But the price point is a tad high at 6 a bomber. Overall taste has a touch more alcohol burn then I like out of a beer. 9.5 % I expect some but a little less booze would be nicer. Good notes of tropical fruit and citrus but the burning booze killed it.

 280 characters

Photo of RobTheKnob
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Be careful with this one. It's uber-tasty, so you want to keep sipping on it, but it has the best hidden 9.5% ABV (according to the bottle) I have ever had.

 156 characters

Photo of drpimento
4.76/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Quintessential Double IPA. Appearance is a decent size, slow to settle, thick, off-white head, lace, and a clear honey amber color. Aroma is hops, caramel malt, spice, grain. Flavor's like aroma, has a slight sweetness, good tartness, and the proper bitterness for this kind of beer. Has a nice mouth filling feeling yet with just the right buzz from good carbonation for excellent body. Also delivers some alcohol warmth. A hop monster for sure, but a good monster.

 466 characters

Photo of sergeantstogie
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It feels weird to me to rate an experimental beer that changes, as far as I know, every year. But this is one very drinkable DIPA. Almost creamy without being cloying. Perfect amount of bitterness. Not too fruity or citrusy. Really damn good IPA. Sure it could be prettier but who cares. Glad I snuck this into the grocery cart today.

 334 characters

Photo of DaltonC
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Ok I have had this beer before, when it first came out...it seemed very syrupy and strong similar to SN's Hoptimum, which is an absolute pine bomb and just too much...

BUT, I picked up 3 bottles at Albertson's during a Super Bowl sale (2.75ea) for a 22oz bomber, 2 dated 4/7/15 and one 4/8/15?? So 2 different batches I guess...anyways there were AMAZING. Either my palate has adjusted or this year's batches are different, and they are working for sure. This beer is semi fresh but it is so smooth and clean and perfect amount of bitterness. It has that dirt wolf type taste on the finish and warms up so well...

I will be seeking this out in the future, Deschutes can do no wrong, and I believe the beer is underrated.


 728 characters

Photo of colingaiser
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured slowly from a bomber into a tulip glass.

L: Gorgeous deep amber verging on orange. There's a thick, creamy two-finger head that holds up for a long time and leaves beautifully intricate lacing.

S: Deep and intoxicating hop aromas of pine, grapefruit, honey, and even a little bubblegum. Along with the appearance it's a very inviting brew.

T: WOW! There's an initial hoppy bite that unleashes a flood of floral, piney, and citric hop notes, followed by a rich malty sweetness of honey and toffee with a little peppery spice, all with an underlying warm booziness. The finish is a little bitter, as would be expected.

M: Quite heavy for an IPA, imperial or not. There's a nice creaminess that accentuates the sweeter elements of the beer.

O: Overall, this is an absolutely stellar beer. I consumed a whole bomber on my own, despite its heaviness. Deschutes continues to kill it!

 893 characters

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

On tap in a tulip glass. Appearance: poured a 1" white head that dropped quickly with some nice lacing on the glass. Color is a cloudy golden-orange with moderate streaming carbonation. Aroma: hop forward with pine, citrus dominate and some white bread dough in the background. Mouthfeel: medium bodied and viscous, with a dry, bitter, warming finish. Flavor: strong grapefruit, tangerine, and pine hops are balanced with nice biscuit and malty sweetness. Overall: a nice sipper at 9.5% abv. It is not overly boozy (which is plus), but the alcohol is not entirely hidden either.

 578 characters

Photo of Giardrx
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed this Jan 12 2015 so bottle was very fresh. Nice grapefruit, orange and pineapple aroma, some pine as well. Not too strong or danky more of a well balanced easy drinking double IPA. Would rank higher but doesn't give you that "POW!" like the guy fom stepbrothers says

 275 characters

Photo of titty_mcbitty
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Rusty orange-golden with some bubbles streaming up to a quickly dissipating white head. Lacing is left on the glass.

S: Sweet corn and citrus. Hops.

T: Bubblegum, graham cracker, biscuit, and grain. On the fresher side: big hops, orange peel, some banana, and woody pine. Great taste!

M: Medium and buttery with a nice lingering dryness. Coats the mouth a bit.

O: A great brew! I love the hop character in this as well as the malty undertones. If they don't, Deschutes needs to make a six pack of this.

 512 characters

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

A: orange. Clear. Thick, foamy, white head. Excellent lacing.

S: sweet bubblegum followed by mango and citrus.

T: sweet malty tastes up front. Grapefruit. Biscuit.

M: medium carbonation. Medium body. More dry than sweet.

O: good IPA. Well balanced. Hops work well with balance between malts and booze.

 321 characters

Photo of utfiero
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color- cloudy gold. Huge head.

Aroma- lemons, grapefruit, and hints of grass and honey.

Taste- starts hoppy and clean, then gets a little heavy and sweet in the middle, finishing on notes of bitter greens and grapefruit rind with a lingering and long dry aftertaste. Purchased at Costco for $3.99. Drink by date 7/15/14. Tasted on 7/15/14.

Poured from 650 ml bomber into a Liefmans Goudenband glass (my preferred all purpose beer tasting glass).

 450 characters

Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours hazy golden color with 2 finger width foamy head. Head retention is decent. There is a good amount of lacing on the side of the glass. The aroma really isn't that strong. Most of what I can make out is apple. On tasting, there is a slight malty taste, quickly followed by a hoppy explosion. I can taste a hint of apple at the end. Kind of a bitter, soapy aftertaste. The taste is good, but there is something a little off, and it may be the soapiness at the end. I will say that I drank this a little over a month after the date on the bottle, so my review may have been different if I drank it earlier.

 609 characters

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

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, best before 7/15/2014. Pours light hazy/cloudy bright orange color with a 2 finger dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of big tangerine, orange peel, lemon zest, pineapple, mango, peach, papaya, apricot, light caramel, bread, floral, grass, light pine, and floral/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with great complexity and balance of juicy citrus/tropical hops and moderate malt sweetness; with good strength. Taste of tangerine, orange peel, lemon zest, pineapple, peach, apricot, mango, papaya, light caramel, bread, floral, grass, light pine, and floral/grassy earthiness. Fair amount of floral/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of tangerine, orange peel, lemon zest, pineapple, peach, apricot, mango, light caramel, bread, floral, grass, light pine, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity and robustness of juicy citrus/tropical hops and moderate malt sweetness; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth and fairly creamy/sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent DIPA. All around great complexity and balance of juicy citrus/tropical hops and moderate malt sweetness; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,529 characters

Photo of Louisville-Beer-Reviews
4.48/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Slightly hazy, golden orange, with a thick, fine head. Sheets of lacing down the glass.

Aroma: Tropical fruit aromas of mango and papaya, and also some stone fruit aroma of apricot and peach.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Flavor on the tongue is that of sweet, slightly fruity, herbal, green hops and it finishes just the same, with the the character of the hops leaning towards the green and herbal flavors. Malt flavors aren’t really present/noticeable here, as the hop flavors cover them up almost completely, and they mostly add a bit of a sweet backbone to the entire profile. The character of the hops is still quite enjoyable and unique, as it tastes like a raw, fresh hop and isn’t actually as potently bitter or dry as most IPAs.

Final Word: Definitely a beer for hop lovers only, though the character of the hops used is unique enough to warrant at least a taste by any beer drinker, as it’s far from offensive. Though not as well balanced as it should be, it’s a far cry from your kick-in-the-teeth bitter IPAs out there. Try it if you love hops and are looking for something new, but don’t bother if you are still getting used to/learning to appreciate hops.

 1,186 characters

Photo of AtrumAnimus
4.71/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

My first review using my new Spiegelau IPA Glass.

This one pours a nice cloudy golden color that has a nice fluffy white head that is long lived and leaves thick structured lacing down the glass.

The nose is nice and rich with sweet malts, grass, pine, rain, citrus, vanilla with a floral bouquet.

The taste is rich as well with a great hop dominance that presents in many different levels. There is a buttery bitterness up front with a sweet spike in the middle that falls to a dry bitter finish with notes of camphor, rosemary, lavender, apples and grapefruit.

The mouthfeel is equally rich and perfectly balanced for this experimental brew.

Overall this is an exceptionally drinkable beer and I highly recommend it.

 723 characters

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.72/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a hazed golden peach color with a white head. Hoppy aroma of citrus, fruit snack and herb. In the taste, citrus, orange, kiwi and a hit of alcohol. Even bitterness and a solid hop flavor. Very drinkable and smooth but its strong assed shit.
Overall, a very good imperial ipa.

 281 characters

Hop Henge Experimental IPA from Deschutes Brewery
4.1 out of 5 based on 2,481 ratings.
  • About Us

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

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.