Quick Draw: Hopslam

Hopslam by Bell’s Brewing (Kalamazoo, MI) is the first beer that I can vividly recall being genuinely obsessed with. It widely established the highest standard of excellence for Midwest-style Double IPAs (DIPAs). Brewed with honey, malty and sweet, plus a hoppy bang to match, this beer has it all.

Though they keep this beer’s hop bill under wraps, Bell’s was kind enough to reveal that Simcoe is among the 6 types of hops used in the recipe:

You can find plenty of speculation on the topic of Hopslam’s hops on homebrew forums and across the interwebs. All I can tell you for sure is that no single recipe seems to match the next.

This year, Bell’s releases this delightful gem in cans, which means it’s more protected from the elements, and you can even take it on a good ol’ Midwest-style float trip!


Hopslam, 10% ABV (Bell’s Brewing, Inc.)

Appearance: Golden orange with a slight haze and constant parades of lively bubbles making their way to the beer’s surface. As I drink, the glass is covered with a delicate white web of bubbles.

Aroma: Pine sap, freshly snipped pine branches, orange citrus zest, and grassy funk

Mouthfeel: Full to medium-full, super creamy with a bite

Flavor: Malty and sweet up front and finishing with hoppy citrus and pine, this beer is incredibly balanced, but packs a punch on both ends. Pine branches, orange peel, orange juice, and sweet honey all dominate the palate equally.


Today the market is flooded with IPAs and DIPAs; Hopslam is no longer the only sweet, piney bombshell on the shelves. However, it will always hold a special place in my mouth heart as one of the first super-hoppy concoctions I fell in love with. Thanks, Bell’s!


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