Monday, February 13, 2012

Hopslam (Bell's Brewery, Kalamazoo, MI)

Saw Hopslam popping up on several feeds for local beer stores, so took a chance on a snowy evening with bad roads that my local liquor store would have some so I wouldn't have to drive across town. In short, I got mine!  My local store isn't up to the standards of the Four Firkins, but they are starting to do a nice job.  In fact, checking my list, I've gotten Hopslam from Arbor Pointe Liquors for two years in a row.

In the interest of accuracy, I'm writing about the second bottle of the night. Honey fueled 10% alcohol isn't apparent in the taste--just the in feel.  Like Bell's says, it's a "remarkably drinkable rendition of the Double India Pale Ale style."  Poured down the center, a fluffy, not quite white head grows on top of the burnished copper ale.  Lace is thick and luscious down the side of the glass.  Incredible nose with big grapefruit and spice. Smells like a fresh hop ale without the grassy, green element.  From Bell's description, there's six hop varietals in the beer with a "massive" Simcoe dry hop, making it one of the best smelling beers on the market.  Sharp bitterness in the mouth lingers and builds over the course of the session.  Slightly green taste, especially as it warms, with a sharp fruitiness over a bready sweetness and peppery spice that creates a light, drinkable ale without making it thin.  My only criticism is that I wasn't smart enough to buy a second six pack.

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