Well, I was finally able to have a can of the legendary Double IPA – Heady Topper crafted from The Alchemist. I have heard so much about this beer and to be able to experience this beer (thanks to my friend Stephen) was great. This is a beer that scored a 100 on BeerAdvocate.com and is the talk among beer geeks and hop-heads as the best IPA to drink. Heady Topper is only sold within 20 miles of where it is brewed in Waterbury, Vermont. When they sold it from the brewery, the lines of people and cars were so immense and caused traffic problems that in November 2013, The Alchemist had to stop selling from the retail shop in the brewery. They are now selling from a retail space off site with plans to open another brewery that can handle the public and selling beer from the brewery. Heady Topper is an unfiltered, unpasteurized double IPA that is brewed to “showcase the complex flavors and aromas” that the hop flowers produce.
Heady Topper has a hazy clarity to it with an orange color. The head has a white color and is foamy in texture. Since I was having a tasting with others I only poured a small amount so the head wasn’t that big.
Heady Topper is a beer with great aroma. There is grapefruit, pine and citrus in every inhale. This is a beer that is enjoyable to just smell. It would make a great car freshener. As with the aroma, the taste of the beer has notes of citrus, grapefruit and pine. The bitterness is enjoyable and it sits on the palate pleasantly. It does not assault your palate with caustic hop bitterness. With each sip you can taste the citrus and pine from the hops and I also detect an apricot flavor that starts to come out the more sips that I have. This beer has a medium-bodied mouthfeel and the malt provides balance so that the hops can shine.
Heady Topper Double IPA from The Alchemist is a beer that you savour with each sip. On the top of the can it is written: Drink From The Can. Why? If you pour it in a glass, the act of pouring will release the essential aromas that they’ve worked so hard to retain in the beer. Each sip reveals another layer of hop flavor. You just don’t taste Heady Topper, you experience it.
ABV = 8.0%