Happy Hops
Russian River Brewing Company

Happy HopsHappy Hops
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IPA - American
Ranked #139
Ranked #2,661
4.15 | pDev: 8.92%
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States
Happy HopsHappy Hops
Notes: Happy Hops was originally brewed by the Grace Brothers Brewery in 1944 right here in Santa Rosa! Their brewery went out of business in the 1960’s, but we wanted to resurrect “Happy” and a new fun beer for him to enjoy! It is also a way for us to pay homage to the Grace Family and their brewing pioneer history. Happy Hops is an incredibly hoppy India Pale Ale with an immense hop aroma and flavor and a mild bitterness. Happy Hops is an IPA brewed with both new and old hop varieties, giving this beer bold aromas and flavors with notes of tropical and stone fruits.

50 IBU
Reviews: 115 | Ratings: 485 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Gatch
Gatch from Rhode Island

4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

510ml bottle dated 031820. Finally found a somewhat fresh bottle after finding a few other stores on Coronado carrying old bottles. Got caught drinking a year old Blind Pig, never again! This is a seriously good West Coast IPA that seems like a consistent option when other RR options aren’t available. Super dank and pungent with plenty of tropical fruit. Gets better with each sip as it warms up.

Jun 17, 2020
Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
Oh_Dark_Star from Washington

4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Radiant mostly filtered golden hue. A dense finger of ivory head leaving sticky bands of lace. Simple and elegant.

S: Powerful lemon zest, lime and orange citrus and some herbal notes. These can be observed from arm’s length and are incredibly enticing.

T: Follows the nose. Supremely hoppy. Well executed like most of Russian River’s bests.

F: Nicely crushable in all aspects.

O: This is very good. I’m surprised at the mediocre average.

Jun 09, 2020
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Mister_Faucher from Washington

4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle served in a nonic glass, bottled on 03/18/20.

Look- Clear golden color, largish bright white head with great retention and nice sticky lacing. moderate carbonation streams visible.

Smell- Citrus (orange, grapefruit and lemon), passion fruit, light stone fruit and berry, biscuity malt, resinous pine and floral/grassy hop notes.

Taste- Similar to the aroma. Citrus, light tropical fruit, apricot and berry, resinous pine, bready malts with a light lingering hoppy bitter finish. Pretty well balanced.

Feel- Medium/light bodied, dry and really crisp, super refreshing. Medium carbonation on the tongue.

O- My first Russian River beer and it lives up to the hype. A really nice IPA!

May 16, 2020
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jmui from California

4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

510 mL bottle into tulip glass
Bottled: 04/23/2020
Consumed: 05/06/2020

L: Not much of a looker. Golden yellow, almost urine-like. Head is fine as is moderate lacing
S: Simcoe tropical fruits right up in front. Nice mango/guava notes. Tiny but distinct citrus pith astringency on the back end.
T: Fairly crisp medium/medium minus mouthfeel. Good hop profile with some bite on the base but bitterness mild. ABV spot on here. Some dryness. Some minerality mid palate. Citrus and tropical fruits as expected but balanced and somewhat restrained. Astringency shows up again subtlely in background. Hop oil shows up more pronounced half way through. Malt profile is light.
F: Underrated and overlooked IMO. This has some nice levity to it and fairly distinct. It is less likely to get washed out in a session where multiple IPA styles are consumed. I also think it drinks a little bit better than most IPAs as it warms up.

May 07, 2020
Photo of Kelden

4.95/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Delicious IPA that is the perfect balance of hops. Tastes like a pale almost. Ideal carbonation, not too sweat or sour. Probably my favorite Russian River beer, which is a very controversial statement.

May 02, 2020
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BucannonXC5 from California

4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Type: 16-oz. draft
Reviewed as: American IPA
Glass: Clear shaker pint glass
Price: $8.50
From: San Diego Brewing Company in San Diego, Calif.
Purchased: Feb. 23, 2020
Consumed: Feb. 23, 2020
Misc.: 2020 Pliny the Younger release; Quick review

Headed over to San Diego Brewing Company for the Younger release. Was there an hour early (to get a Younger ticket), so decided to try Happy Hops for the first time. Untappd description read, “Test session IPA using 369 hops, daughter hybrid from Simcoe. Not really a Blond Ale, not a Pale Ale, not an IPA. Happy Hops is a light colored refreshing ale with a pronounced hop character.”

Poured a medium yellow-to-gold murky color with 1-to-2 fingers of frothy white head when I got it. Could see just a few bubbles. World-class foamy lacing. Perfect retention. (Sight - 4.50)

Smelled Simcoe, grapefruit, papaya, tangerine, pineapple, mango, pine and bit citrus notes. (Smell - 4.25)

Tasted big grapefruit, tangerine, papaya, pineapple, Simcoe, mango, papaya, lemon, peach, apricot, pine, passion fruit and lingering black pepper. (Taste - 4.25)

Medium body. Oily texture. Average carbonation. Sharp, juicy finish. (Feel - 4.25)

Loved this. Probably undervalued it. (Overall - 4.25)

4.27 | 95 | A

Apr 15, 2020
Photo of sjdevel
sjdevel from Colorado

4.83/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

LOOK - really nice golden yellow color that's really clear - 2 finger head poured from a 500ml bottle - foam is an amazing brilliant white that is like meringue - nice head retention - nice layer of bubbles remain after head recedes
SMELL - strong citrus, mango, and pine - hops are very powerful - slight bread/cracker - slight maltiness
TASTE - slightly bitter but not too strong - blast of powerful hops - mango and some pine - hints of lemon and orange - starts off rich and sweet but dries to a more tart citrus flavor - very flavorful - great hops in this one
FEEL - seems to feel frothy the entire time - nice full/medium body - great mouthfeel
OVERALL - this is yet another amazing beer from Russian River - always impressive and enjoyable - hops are plentiful - seems to be more on the piney side but some nice tropical and citrus mixed in there - I will definitely pick this one up again

Mar 21, 2020
Photo of jrc1093
jrc1093 from Connecticut

4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 2/12/20

Pours a translucent bronze-tinged light gold body capped with multiple fingers of steady white head; great retention leaves a thin cap, moderate collar, and lasting layering of chunky, soapy lacing.

Aromas offer a unique touch of rubbery, dank peach and tropical fruits steadily phasing into accents of almost sappy evergreen and pine needles as a citrus twist of tangerine, blueberry, and touches of lemon come through on the back end.

Taste shows oily lemon and some subdued stone fruit upfront as hints of blueberry intertwine with crisp malt and bits of fresh, grassy hops over the mid-palate and into the finish.

Mouthfeel brings out a medium-light body with an ample and rounded upper-level carbonation; crisp, drying grit over the mid-palate leads into a wisp of bitterness evened quickly to a clean, mild finish touched with soft hop-laden oils.

The hop/malt balance here is soft and casually impressive, leaving a universally approachable character and resulting in a classic west-coast IPA with nuance and touch.

Mar 04, 2020
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Korbynlehr from Kentucky

4.74/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Those hops are happy. Another Russian River beer that checks off all the boxes. Nose, head, lacing, flavor and follow up flavors are above average and set the bar.

Feb 28, 2020
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gatornation from Minnesota

4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slight hazed light golden color with a white head. Fruity and dank hoops on the nose. Taste is citrus ,fruity hops with some herbal grassy notes. Sweet and floral mouth feel with a little bitterness. Very tasty although. Pricey.

Feb 26, 2020
Photo of Mac_Dre

4.64/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured aggressively into a tulip. As soon as I cracked the bottle the fresh smell of hops and citrus punched me in the nose. Very dank. Over 2 fingers of head, strong lacing that lingers. Smell is very citrusy sweet with pine, some tropical notes as well. Light golden color, with a little haze. This beer has a delicious. If Pliny is RR's DIPA, this seems like the lighter alternative, although I am yet to try Blind Pig. An incredible West Coast IPA you should get it if you can.

Feb 18, 2020
Photo of neenerzig
neenerzig from Ohio

4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Having this with my good friend Passow, who brought a bottle of this back with him from the brewery in northern California. Poured into a pint glass, this beer pours a slightly cloudy/hazy, light, pale golden color with lots of streams of little streams of bubbles quickly and continuously rising to the beer's surface. Has a nice white, creamy looking, head that's about an inch thick when first poured. Settles eventually to a thick surface coating of foam and a thick ring lining the inside of the glass at the beer's surface. Good lacing here too. Aromas of some slightly zesty, bready grainy malts, and floral, herbal hops. Has a very similar flavor profile, with some slightly zesty, bready grainy malts, and floral, herbal hops with some apricot as well. A well balanced flavor profile here. Has a somewhat crisp, also smooth, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Has a clean finish with a herbal hop aftertaste. A very good IPA here. Glad I got a chance to try this one.


Feb 07, 2020
Photo of KingStelle
KingStelle from California

4.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Nice light yellow color. Smell is amazing, with citrus and floral notes. Taste is hop forward with a pleasant bitter finish. Medium light mouthfeel. Very good.

Jan 31, 2020
Photo of Tuck_leepulin
Tuck_leepulin from Texas

3.68/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

500ml bottle poured into an English style pint glass. Bottled on 12/06/19.

Appearance: Pours a clear, deep straw yellow with 1 finger of head

Smell: grapefruit, citrus zest and floral notes

Taste: Citrus similar to the aroma. Low bitterness. Blueberry in the finish

Mouthfeel: medium body with dry finish

Overall: A very solid west coast ipa. I wish I had it a within a week or two of bottling. Still worth having but not too much as far as hop flavor.

Jan 17, 2020
Photo of bret27
bret27 from California

3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From bottle 2 months old to tulip.
Nice golden color, fluffy white head.
Aroma of tropical fruit; grass, apricots.
Tastes like melons and pine. A little dusty dirt flavor. Not overly hopped.
Medium bodied.
Pretty good. Will try on tap at some point and see if it tastes different.

Dec 20, 2019
Photo of beergoot
beergoot from Colorado

4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light gold colored body; very effervescent; two-finger thick head, frothy and sculpted. Sweet and pungent hop aroma; citrus, herbs, and fresh cut hay; lemon. Well-blended tastes of light malt grains and tasty yet not over-the-top hop bitterness; lemon bread; earthy hop bitterness; basil. Medium body; crisp and sparkly on the palate; dry overall.

This is a fantastic old school IPA. Probably still more American than English as the hop bitterness is front and center. I like this one for it's lack of modern hops that just gob smack you with citrus and tropical fruits. Indeedy! We have ourselves some kick ass earthy hops, and well-done, at that...

Oct 18, 2019
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EdHinPasadena from California

4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

October 16th, 2019. Lucky Baldwin's Trappiste pub in Pasadena, CA. Pint (on tap), recommended by bartender. In Russian River Still Younger pint glass.
The look is a nice, hazy golden yellow. Bringing it close to the nose and the aroma immediately hits you. Spectacularly hoppy aroma: piney, floral and citrusy. The taste is really close to the aroma: piney, floral and citrusy, and hoppy but not as bitter as one might expect. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied and a lighter carbonation. Overall, this is another outstanding contribution from the Russian River Brewing Company. Must have again!

Oct 17, 2019
Photo of augustgarage
augustgarage from California

4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 8/22, consumed on 9/15. Poured from a 500mL bottle into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Clear sunglow body with three fingers of pearling rocky merengue. Thick rich lacing; superior retention.

Resinous aromatics with pine, cannabis, berry, and hints of citrus and pineapple.

Mineral-laced palate entry with iron and saltines beneath the forest floor and grapefruit pith notes. As the ale warms, more citrus and cream notes emerge, although the beer remains quite dry throughout. It has a sugar-free-cake element to the flavor profile at times. I won't pretend to unpack all of the hop varieties in the list (I don't think I've even had Cashmere, Azacca, or Strata before), but there are a lot of layers here for the hop-head to ponder. Moderately bitter.

Not quite crisp, faintly spicy mouth-feel with good carbonation, and a lingering dryness.

Complex and contemporary while also retaining all traditional style elements. I still prefer Blind Pig, but this does seem to have more going on - certainly worth picking up if you have access to a fresh bottle.

Sep 15, 2019
Photo of superspak
superspak from Michigan

4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this from RaulMondesi. 500 ml bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 7/17/2019. Pours slightly hazy medium golden yellow color with a 2 finger dense and rocky off white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a large cap that lasts. Thick foamy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big tangerine, red grapefruit, lemon, peach, pineapple, apricot, passion fruit, mango, honeydew melon, berries, citrus peel/rind, wood, peppercorn, pine, cracker, white bread dough, lightly toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and pale male notes; with big strength. Taste of huge tangerine, red grapefruit, lemon, peach, pineapple, apricot, passion fruit, mango, honeydew melon, berries, citrus peel/rind, wood, peppercorn, pine, cracker, white bread dough, lightly toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness. Light-moderate pine, citrus peel/rind, herbal, floral, woody, grassy, peppery bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of tangerine, red grapefruit, lemon, peach, pineapple, apricot, passion fruit, mango, honeydew melon, berries, citrus peel/rind, wood, peppercorn, pine, cracker, white bread dough, lightly toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and pale male flavors; with an awesome malt/bitterness balance, and no lingering hop astringency after the finish. Light-moderate increasing dryness from lingering bitterness. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately bready/grainy/sticky, and fairly crisp/resinous/rindy balanced mouthfeel that is great. Minimal warming alcohol for 6.5%. Overall this is a fantastic IPA. All around fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and pale male flavors; very smooth and fairly crisp to drink with the modestly bitter/resinous/drying finish; not overly aggressive. Feels like Centennial, Columbus, Simcoe. Extremely vibrant, juicy, dank, and earthy hops; with a great clean pale malt backbone. Mild residual sweetness with crisp resin dryness. A highly enjoyable offering, and outstanding classic tasting West coast IPA as expected.

Aug 04, 2019
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ReDave from California

4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is pretty good! I sure wish Russian River was available closer to me!
Smells great!
Not a Hop Bomb, but some good bitterness.
Nice aftertaste, Oh I'd get this again!

May 29, 2019
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metter98 from New York

4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Capital Hop Shop, Sacramento, CA

A: The beer is crystal clear yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high frothy white head.
S: Moderate to strong aromas of citrusy and floral hops are present in the nose.
T: The taste follows the smell and has strong flavors of citrusy and floral hops. There is a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I found this beer to be very easy to drink and nearly sessionable.

Serving type: on-tap

May 05, 2019
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rand from California

4.31/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500 mL bottle into a pint glass.

Familiar American pale appearance, straw-yellow with medium opacity. Sudsy head never fully recedes.

Sharp, snappy-fresh bouquet, citrusy and grassy. Orange zest and pine collide with honey-sweet malts.

Citrus-forward on the palate, plenty of bitter pine essence. Distinct notes of pithy tangerine and caramelly malts offset the bitter aspects, giving the brew refreshing drinkability. A medium complexion and ample carbonation lead to a quick, clean finish.

A tasty, dare I say ‘classic’ West Coast IPA that’s exceeding easy to throw back.

May 04, 2019
Photo of AleManDan
AleManDan from California

4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful in the glass—blonde, slightly hazy with a huge, dense yet somewhat rocky head and major head retention.

Taste follows with citrus zest, tons of stone fruit goodness (grapefruit, tangerine, etc), peach creamsicle and clean, crackery malts and almost a sugar cookie sweetness. It’s hoppy but the bitterness is muted like a NEIPA but it’s still a more traditional West Coast style IPA just dry hopped a lot. Delicious.

Mouthfeel is medium finishes dry. I love the carbonation in this. It drinks like a smaller beer due to the dry hopping. This would be a summer go to if it were in cans.

Almost like the more recent Luponic Distortion offerings (rotating IPA series) from Firestone Walker. Indeed, if you like this then try those beers which can be had on the cheap from Trader Joe’s.

“Happy Hops is a 6.5 percent ABV IPA brewed with Amarillo, Azacca, Brewers Gold, cashmere, centennial, Citra, Mosaic, Simcoe and Strata hops that is packaged in 510ml bottles. The IPA is a recreation of a beer that was originally brewed in 1944 by the Grace Brother’s Brewery, which was located in Russian River’s home city and closed in the 1960’s.”

Apr 16, 2019
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TrojanRB from California

4.53/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An absolutely gorgeous beer....first time I’ve given a “5”.....beautiful gold color, slightly unfiltered, with very vigorous carbonation bubble evident. Huge, two finger majestic creamy head that hasn’t settled at all in the 3-4 minutes since I poured. Perfect.

Buried my nose in the foam, huge tropical profile. Papaya, guava, pineapple.

Taste has more pine, and some grapefruit. Lightly sweet, with some lemon rind.

Above average carbonation, very dry finish.

Fantastic beer, more modern flavors than I’m used to from RR, but brewed with their top notch skill.

Bottle dated 3/18, 16 days old.

Apr 03, 2019
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sjrider from California

4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle , a clear golden straw color with short white head leaving lots of frosty lacing. Nose is good and hoppy with some fruity notes. Taste follows with a moderate hop bite . Nicely done. Definitely a WC IPA.

Mar 11, 2019
Happy Hops from Russian River Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 485 ratings