Hop-a-lot-amus | River Horse Brewing Co.

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390 Ratings

Brewed by:
River Horse Brewing Co.
New Jersey, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by AltBock on 12-03-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 390 |  Reviews: 138
Photo of Risser09
4.59/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter - fridge - 2009

Appearance: Pours a hazy garnet/orange with a 2" tall ivory head. It looks very foamy, but also has large bubbles sitting on its surface in the middle. Great retention and some spotty lace.

Smell: Delicious aromas of sweet grapefruit, spring blossoms and some bitter pine underneath. Sweet pale malts and a tad bit of cereal.

TasteL Bountiful bitterness of grapefruit and lemon, with some grassy fresh tones as well. Sweet pale malt balances the beer as best it can. I believe this beer tastes as good as any of the other great DIPAs out there.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, bitter, fresh, hoppy and an alcohol burn for the finish. Plenty of active carbonation.

Drinkability: Awesome. This beer is comparable to any great DIPA, and I could drink quite a few of them since the abv is only 8.5%. The best beer to come out of New Jersey.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a deep rustic orange with a 1 finger creamy bone white head that was mostly lasting leveling to a smooth patchy covering for the remainder of the drink. To call this beer unfiltered would be a severe understatement. The clarity was murky with very little light coming thru. The lacing was slight but the intense murky unfiltered nature made up for this short coming.

S: The nose was wet caramelized grains adding sweetness while an earthy fresh cut woodsy aroma offers subtle tones along with wet pine. Light dried caramel toast and light flowery hops closes things out. Overall liked the aroma, definitely something different from the citrusy overload of hops but came in a little underpowered for a 2x ipa in my opinion.

T: The bitterness comes through with dark toasted caramel grains with a wallop of citrus. Fresh grapefruit and lemon peel add a strong hop flavor that starts juicy and wet before quickly turning dry. The flavor seems a bit thin body and flavor wise (later I would find out this had a pilsner backbone) which brings out the hoppy nature, but does little in the way of offering fullness. The beer finishes with a nice dryness of grapefruit that sticks around. Overall enough dry citrus hops to justify a 2x label but the malting while different didn't offer any balance.

M: creamy but very light with little feel to it. A nice light creamy caramel but the thin pilsner malting hinders fullness. A light residual coating of malt and grapefruit covers the tongue saving this from perhaps an average showing.

D: Decent drinkability and decent enjoyment. Will smack the taste buds around a bit with a numbing citrus worthy of double ipa standards but the malting suffers here balance wise. Still worth a look the price of a 4-pack.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.18/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Very nice looking beer. Deep orangish brown color. Cloudy, beautiful three finger head that very slowly dissipated with decent lacing on the sides.

S - Smelled this one as soon as I popped open the bottle. Very nice, sweet grains and malts, some resin, hops come through very nicely on this one.

T - Wow, nothing subtle here. Starts a little sweet and then goes bitter bitter bitter through the rest. Bitterness sticks in the back of my throat on this one and my mouth puckers a little bit.

M - Kind of strange, my tongue almost felt weighted down by this brew somehow. Medium light bodied beer feels heavier by the taste somehow. Carbonation is nicely present.

D - Decently good, but just too bitter for me. Can't do a whole lot of this.

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Photo of tpd975
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A murky orange hue with a nice tall creamy off white head. Wonderful retention. It looks as if a lace grenade went off in the glass when this one is finished.

S: Wonderful sweet scents. Lots of caramel malt with subtle roast. Tons of resinous pine. Lots of balance but the hops and malt comes off very sweet.

T: Sweet in flavor as well. Caramel and brown sugar up front. Loads of sweet sweet pine hops. Light sweet summer fruits.

M: Medium in body, pretty tasty.

D: Good, not a bad DIPA, would drink again for sure.

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Photo of meatyard
3.83/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky orange/amber with a 3-finger whitish head that slowly falls leaving very nice lacing.
The smell is light citrus hops and a grassy, maybe it's pine, aroma. There's plenty of sweet malt in there too.
The taste has the same hop character as the smell but it's mild. The malt sweetness backends the taste and there is little bitterness.
Mouthfeel is medium to thick and is just right for this beer.
It's very drinkable.

I feel this beer could have the hop profile amped up a bit and RH would find they have a very popular beer. There's nothing wrong with it but it doesn't quite hit the mark that the better east coast DIPAs do.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.94/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

08/31/09- Purcahsed at Buy-Rite Liquors in Plainfield, NJ.

Presentation- 12oz bottle. Did not check for freshness info. Poured into a random pint glass.

Appearance- Deep orange colored pour. Lots of fine sediment. Small barely-there head with light watery lace.

Smell- Nose of fruity and sugary malt and hops. Not hugely outgoing, but there nontheless.

Taste- Lots of flavor. Largey on sugary toasted caramel malt and some floal and tropical fruited hops. Pretty evenly balanced.

Mouthfeel- Very thick. Feels like 10%...viscous. Lower carbonation level and some nice bitterness in the aftertaste.

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Photo of Nickls
3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

(From notes)

A - Nice finger of white foamy head; great curtains of lacing; shimmery orange gold color; bit hazy

S - Bit of a grapefruit bomb in the nose; citrus; a bit dank; hint of candied maltiness

T - Sour/fresh grapefruit; dry, bitter, and quite hoppy; bit too much on the grapefruit and otherwise would have been a winner

M - Medium; a little oily and creamy; nice on cask

D - Too much grapefruit drove down this factor for me, but it was still pretty decent

Overall, a nice enough brew and I was surprised with it. Worth a look.

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Photo of jwc215
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazed/clouded (it's unfiltered) orangeish amber with a creamy off-white-to-tan head that stays.

The smell is of citrus (grapefruit and orange) and resiny pine with caramel.

The taste is of citrus - grapefruit - with pine/resin. Caramel sweetness forms the backbone. Sweetness turns to a spicy tea-like bitter finish. Warming alcohol shows through.

The medium body is somewhat oily.

It's a bit raw, but well-hopped in a "balanced" way for the style. A solid DIPA that hits the style well!

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Photo of BigMike
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"The heavy hop character of this double ipa is a subtle as a 'river horse' in your lap, but finishes like a hippo in a tutu."
-from the bottle

Poured from a 12 oz. Bottle into a Duvel tulip.

Damn near overflowed the glass when the Creamy head rushed up. Underneath is a glowing cloudy cider color dipa with some orangey highlights.

Smell is all dipa. Caramel sweetness with lots of orangey pineapple and brown sugar.

Taste is very sweet for a dipa. Lots of caramel and brown sugary Sweetness. Once the sweetness is gone the bitterness smacks your taste buds.

Good mouthfeel not real chewy but enjoyably smooth with a light finish.

Easily drinkable at 8.5%. Overall a fair attempt at a dipa. Not spectacular but not bad.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a snifter

Fits snugly into a 14oz snifter after the cream colored cap rose exponentially during a rather mild pour. Underneath the cap sits a supremely hazy orange amber with a moderate amount of bubbles shooting skyward. Loads of sticky lace.

At first whiff, the balance of this dipa comes out. Sweet, sticky caramel with grapefruits, oranges, and pine resin. It doesn't wow me, but I am definitely intrigued.

The hops definitely win the battle in the long run. Sweet caramel and toffee malt flavor throughout, but only as a bed for the hops to play. A sizable ruby red grapefruit bitterness finishes this beer on the right note. Not huge, but it does its job well.

Medium body with a mild stickiness. A considerable amount of grapefruit juice-like bitterness builds and builds as you consume this dipa. It really does grow.

This guy has a manageable abv at a 7.5% and lays down a solid hop assault. I enjoyed this dipa, it does not belong amongst the elite dipa's, but definitely a good interpretation of the style.

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Photo of mikey711
3.18/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ahhh New Jersey beer...

A: a murky amber, with ok lacing, very cloudy.

S: Some earthy and pine notes. Not much in terms of citrus. Would have like a more pungent aroma.

T: Mild Citrus and pine notes. I would have liked a bit more sweetness to balance it out. It seemed a bit water.

M: Slightly creamy not much acidity or booziness.

D: Very drinkable, no problem putting back quite a few of these.

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Photo of maddogruss
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this on draft a little while back at the Cloverleaf Tavern.

A: Pours a hazy, orange-amber body with a a nice, fairly silky white head with very nice retention and lacing.

S: A fairly hoppy smell with some Cascade notes accompanied by the nice, grapefruit citrus smell with some alcohol undertones.

T: A nice, bitter, nice, hoppy taste with some slight, citrus malt undertones and warming alcoholic notes in the aftertaste.

M: A nice, fairly smooth mouthfeel on a nice, medium-bodied beer that went well with the taste, overall.

D: A nice mouthfeel and taste combination made the beer somewhat drinkable. A fairly hoppy beer, with the bitterness of the hops getting to me later. Overall, a nice beer.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


A- Hop-a-lot-amus is a nice mix of deep orange and bright gold. Some white foam sat on top of this leaving some nice patterns.

S- A nicely balanced DIPA with hops working with the malts. Getting some pine scents and some sweetness from the malts.

T- Along with the pine needle taste some citrus comes through with the malts trailing behind. There indeed "a-lot" of hops in this but they are balanced well. Some sweet caramel undertones and some bitterness towards the end.

M- A delicate balance between sweet and hoppy but I believe the latter is winning. With that comes some bitterness. I believe that just a bit of alcohol did sneak through.

D- A nicely balanced double IPA that I will be going for again. Not extremely high in ABV like some other imperials can be.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.56/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

River Horse- Hop-A-Lot-Amus

On tap at the Flying Pig- Malvern

A- Hazy reddish orange with a thick white foam head. Good messy lacing.
S- Sweet thick caramle malt, dried fruits, pine hops.
T- Thick heavy sweet caramel malt with even sweeter pineapple and pine hops. Slight touch of alc.
M- Very sweet sugary creamy malt with a sweet hop finish.

Overall- Very good, more malt then hops though.

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Photo of AltBock
3.71/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was on tap at High Street Grill during their River Horse promo night on 12/2/2008. I asked the brewmaster there if this was going be one of their new bottled seasonal beers like the Double Wit and they said that they have no plans as of right now to bottle this beer. It's only available on draft at certain beer bars.

They of course served this beer to me in a River Horse pint glass. This River Horse beer poured a cloudy cranberry orange color. Sitting on top of this orange beer was a creamy 1 to 1 1/2 inch head of pure white foam. It was another one of those heads that looks like there's a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of your beer. This creamy head of foam had excellent slow retention that left behind a small white skim of white foam and an abundance of milky white streaks of lace of around the glass. Great color, but the head of foam was better. What a splendid looking beer!

For a Double IPA, the aroma was on the mild side. There wasn't much jumping at you. This mild aroma contained bitter citrus hops, a hint of tart grapefruit, a tiny splash of pine needles, a speck of toasted malts, and a nice subtle touch of coriander at the finish line.

Like the aroma, the taste was also on the mild/ bitter side of things. Instead of having your taste buds being assaulted with hops after hops, it went down the drinkability road instead. The taste was mildly bitter with bitter and crispy citrus hops, tart grapefruit, a little pinch of lemon zest, a hint of fresh pine needles, and then this mildly hopped beer ends up on the dry side of the beer with some lightly toasted caramel malts. In other words, it was a well balanced not overly hopped IPA.

This River Horse beer was light to medium bodied with a slightly hoppy and dry aftertaste of toasted malts, bitter citrus hops, a hint of tart grapefruit, a dash of sweet yeast, and a splash of lemon peel. This hoppy aftertaste will stick around for a few seconds on your tongue and then it will decide to leave.

As you can probably tell from reading this that River Horse didn't want this beer to be overly hopped where the only thing you can taste is hops. Those kind of beers are great, but this Double IPA is the kind of beer that you can have 2 or more in a sitting. If you see this new River Horse Double IPA on tap at your local bar, don't expect this beer to have an overwhelming amount of hops in it. Just expect it to be really good and more on the drinkable side.

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Hop-a-lot-amus from River Horse Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.59 out of 5 with 390 ratings