Great Lakes Brewery

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IPA - Imperial
Ranked #2,758
Ranked #9,927
4.01 | pDev: 9.73%
Great Lakes Brewery
Ontario, Canada
Notes: RoboHop Imperial IPA is not a beer to trifle with. The unfiltered beer pours with a deep orange hue with a bright white head. The aroma is fantastic. Tropical fruits abound from the glass, which consist of passion fruit, guava, lemon with notes of white grape and evergreen mingling together. Makes you think of cotton-candy. Traces of soft warming alcohol notes are also detected. The full-bodied 8.5% Imperial IPA is very gentle on the palate, making it one sneaky bugger. Many of the aromas come through in the taste, resulting in a very pleasant juicy finish that’s slightly dry, and, as stated in the description – bracingly bitter. An easy-drinking Imperial IPA.

100 IBU
Reviews: 32 | Ratings: 95 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by LanceH:
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LanceH from Canada (ON)

4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mar 17, 2016
More User Reviews:
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DaveBar from Canada (ON)

4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Purchased at the brewery for a mighty steep $5.00 for a 473ml can. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a 1/2" high white head that lasts for a minute before film out. Rather dark gold colour and unfiltered.

S- Good hop base. Lots of malt

T- Juicy good. Very similar to the Lake Effect brew with fruity goodness and hops abound. Has a lot sugar and malt but is rather well balanced. At the end it's bitter, very bitter so there must be a few different hops at work here.

M- Dry and tart after that initial creamy hit gets you

O- Very good brew. I like the additional complexity over some of their other good IPA's but had to knock the overall score down a touch due to the high cost. Would buy a flat in a second if it was $4.00 plus the small discount they offer when you buy a 24pk.

Food Pairing

This nice brew went well with...... A nice spicy blend of diced zucchini, onion, coriander, tomato, olive oil, salt, pepper and hot sauce on top of a bed of spinach and grilled polenta slices.


Mar 17, 2016
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superspak from Ohio

3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got in a BIF from Coronaeus. 16 ounce can into tulip glass, best before 3/28/2019. Pours lightly hazy medium golden amber color with a 1 finger dense and rocky off white head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice dense foamy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of tangerine, red grapefruit, lemon, peach, pineapple, apricot, passion fruit, papaya, mango, honeydew melon, guava, gooseberry, citrus peel/rind, wood, mint, peppercorn, pine, cracker, white bread dough, lightly toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and bready malt notes; with solid strength. Taste of big tangerine, red grapefruit, lemon, peach, pineapple, apricot, passion fruit, papaya, mango, honeydew melon, guava, gooseberry, citrus peel/rind, wood, mint, peppercorn, pine, cracker, white bread dough, lightly toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness. Moderate pine, citrus peel/rind, herbal, woody, grassy, peppery bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of tangerine, red grapefruit, lemon, peach, pineapple, apricot, passion fruit, papaya, mango, honeydew melon, guava, gooseberry, citrus peel/rind, wood, mint, peppercorn, pine, cracker, white bread dough, lightly toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance, and no lingering hop astringency after the finish. Moderate increasing dryness from lingering bitterness. Medium carbonation and medium-plus body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/bready, and sticky/resinous/rindy balanced mouthfeel that is great. Minimal warming alcohol for 8.5%. Overall this is a delicious DIPA. All around nice complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/tropical/earthy hops and bready malt flavors; very smooth and easy to drink for the ABV, with the moderately bitter/resinous/drying finish; not overly aggressive. Feels like a lot of Columbus/Citra. Very juicy, vibrant, and fairly dank/earthy hops; great balancing bready oat/malt backbone. Mild residual sweetness with lingering resin dryness. A very enjoyable offering, well made, and classic tasting West coast style example.

Apr 14, 2019
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thehyperduck from Canada (ON)

4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

650 mL bottle picked up at the LCBO; listed at 8.5% and served slightly chilled. Given previous experience with this brewery's IPAs, I am pretty pumped to crack this one open.

Pours a hazy golden-amber hue, topped off with nearly two fingers of puffy, white-coloured foam. Retention is pretty good; it seeps away slowly over the next 5-10 minutes, leaving behind multiple rings of lacing as it settles into a dense, creamy cap. This is a beautiful-looking pale ale, and the nose is equally impressive - huge, juicy notes of citrusy grapefruit and lemon are immediately noticeable, as well as some hints of pineapple, mango and pine sap. Very fruity and floral, with an understated earthiness to the bouquet.

This is a well-made imperial IPA, but not an overtly remarkable one. Bready malts and caramel sweetness provide a stable presence in the backbone, with flavours of apricot, pineapple and lychee berry surfacing mid-sip. Grapefruit pith, orange zest and lemon rind also maintain a strong presence, with some floral bitterness and pine resin taking over in the finish. The aftertaste is a mixture of bitter citrus pith, butterscotch sweetness and a slight touch of alcohol warmth. Medium-full bodied; this one makes its presence on the palate known, with mild carbonation levels and a smooth, somewhat oily feel in the mouth. Seems best-suited to sipping, with the flavour profile opening up nicely as it warms.

[Updated Jan 30 2021]

473 mL can from the LCBO; dated Jan 12 2021. Robohop is a hophead's delight, there's no doubt of that fact - but I wouldn't say it's as superlative as this brewery's Tank Ten single IPAs (e.g. Thrust!, Karma Citra and maybe Lake Effect). Even still, I'm bumping the grade up a tad anyhow to more closely reflect my current opinion - its flavours are very citrus and tropical fruit-focused, but not particularly bitter, so if that is your bag then you should consider this DIPA to be a very safe purchase, indeed.

Final Grade: 4.18, a worthwhile A-.

Mar 15, 2015
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mick303 from Canada (ON)

3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into glass, 8.5% ABV. A light yellow gold colour is great lacing and film, nice and bright.

S - rich lemon notes, blood orange, bright with citrus oils, spruce, lemon balm, really rich hoppy oils and a bright flavour.

T - bright, fruity with more tropical aspects than the aroma, pineapple, and papaya, lemon, grapefruit, passionfruit. Clean malt body with a robust citrusy and floral flavour, Rich orange, bitter sprucy notes, nice resin. Altogether I think it is a nice full DIPA, quite fruity and citrus, I think the complexity isnt quite finetuned, it seems a bit mashed together. I like they kept the caramel out and allowed the hops to shine, giving them a clean platform, I think with some finetuning it could excel even more.

M - very nice, full body with a refreshing body, moderate carbonation, and a full hop feel with nice crisp finish. Rolling bitterness and some subtle malty sweetness. Balance is very nice.

A very tasty, but fairly middle of the road IPA definitely above average though, very fresh and tasty, but it doesn't all sync up to deliver a mindblowing IPA. Very tasty and I would certainly have this again. Although Ontario is in sore need of IIPAs, I think Bitter 10 and Fracture trump this.

Mar 19, 2015
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taxandbeerguy from Canada (ON)

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

650 ml bomber served just above fridge temperature into a tulip glass. Purchased from the LCBO for $8.95 CDN.

Appearance - A rather clear golden orange colored beer is poured. Not much in visible carbonation a small finger of white head is poured and recedes quickly leaving a thin white film on top. Nominal lacing initially bt a couple of fine rings are create once consumption begins.

Smell - Slightly dank, but also some citrus and pine resin. Mango, passionfruit and grapefruit are most noticeable citrus smells. Rather pungent, inviting and tropical. I'm already expecting this to be the best part of the beer.

Taste - Pretty yummy, with good tropical flavors, a healthy dose of bitterness and a earthy grapefruit finish. The mango and passionfruit don't translate as well here, and the malt bill is quiet, but as with many of GLB's offerings, is sufficiently there to keep the whole beer glued together and create a satisfying product. Bitterness, might be a touch excessive for my tastes.

Mouthfeel - Smooth and initially with some spritzy carbonation. Body is full and the finish is very dry.

Overall - A very well crafted DIPA from GLB but as has been mentioned by other reviews, the gap between Robohop and other Ontario DIPA's is not nearly as big as the chasm between the likes of Lake Effect, Thrust! and other offerings and the competition. Given the relatively steep price, I think I will be satisfied with the lone two bottles that I bought.

Edit April 14, 2017- Had some more of this at just past two weeks and it is certainly impressive. Refreshing, deceiving yet bold. Great intense flavors and a really tasty beer overall. Needed a score bump since I think I have it rated too low and it stacks up very well with other DIPA's. Bumped taste up to 4 and overall to a 4.25.

Mar 12, 2016
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SSS from Canada (QC)

3.86/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A-Orange copper color with a slightly off white head that holds
S-Lots of pine in the aroma, with some Citrus. Tart orange
M-Medium mouthfeel with high carbonation
T-I get lots of bitter orange rind. Reminds me of Athanam hops. The sweetness is really balanced as I don't get 100IBU!
O-Nice beer, surprisingly not as bitter as advertised, good balance

Mar 20, 2016
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kevinlater from Canada (ON)

4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

bomber into small snifter. no date code anywhere on the bottle

a: slightly opaque light orange, a really nice colour. topped with a finger of white-ish head

s: pineapple and grapefruit jumping out of the glass. underlying pine and floral notes. little malt, no alcohol

t: follows the nose. big pineapple up front, leading into a piney bitterness with grapefruit rind, mango, and floral notes. slight caramel/biscuit malt presence opens up mid-palate, but the hops are the clear champion here. subdued hoppy onion notes and a touch of alcohol on the finish

m: medium-bodied, medium carbonation, sticky, finishes dry

o: nothing extravagant here, but it's a good hoppy-fruity double IPA

Mar 11, 2015
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Erik-P from Canada (BC)

4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

May 03, 2017
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ArrogantPrick from Canada (ON)

3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Apr 16, 2014
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dreamchaser from Canada (ON)

3.25/5  rDev -19%

Apr 17, 2014
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Simon212 from Canada (ON)

3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Mar 15, 2016
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KrizzlyBear from Canada (ON)

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

May 16, 2014
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Cycle69 from Canada (ON)

4.54/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Nov 26, 2015
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Jotora from Canada (ON)

4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mar 30, 2015
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hunterjames from Canada (ON)

4.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mar 18, 2015
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Jerboat from Canada (ON)

4.25/5  rDev +6%

Aug 05, 2014
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TheGreenBuddah from Canada (ON)

5/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

for a beer that's 8.5% you could question that it wasn't because its delicious and light. I wish this beer was sold at the beer store cause i would buy it by the case. definatetly recomended a must try beer if you like Ipa's.'...................................................................... .......................

May 05, 2014
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Coronaeus from Canada (ON)

4.06/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Mar 20, 2015
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stevergca from Canada (ON)

5/5  rDev +24.7%

May 12, 2014
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Bunman3 from Canada (AB)

3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

May 03, 2017
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StormAles from Canada (ON)

4.99/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Jun 29, 2017
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talbotjf99 from Canada (QC)

4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mar 21, 2015
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Roby923 from Canada (AB)

4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Throughly enjoyed this Tank 10 series brew. Pours pure gold. Plenty of flavourful hops generating tropical fruit scents and must (citra, Amarillo, mosaic(?)). The higher ABV is deceiving. Bottled from LCBO.

Jun 11, 2016
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leaddog from Canada (AB)

4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Part of Great Lakes Tank Ten series.

Appearance - Pours a clear copper with four fingers of frothy white head.

Smell - piney, earthy, leafy, floral, hint of citrus hops, pine resin, grapefruit peel, bready malts, caramel, and earthy yeast.

Taste - piney, earthy, leafy, floral, and hint of citrus hops upfront. The pine resin, grapefruit peel, bready malts, and caramel follow suit. The earthy yeast finishes off the brew. Nice balance between hops and malts.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Finishes sticky with the hops and malts lingering.

Overall - An exceptionally balanced and highly drinkable American Imperial IPA that displays the bitterness of the hops and the sweetness from the hops. Considering the ABV of this brew, this is a dangerously drinkable brew. Another great brew from the folks at Great Lakes!

Jun 01, 2019
RoboHop from Great Lakes Brewery
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 95 ratings