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Hop Henge

Hop Henge

Judges Rating: 
24 / 24
6 / 6
38 / 40
8 / 10
Overall Impression: 
18 / 20

After nearly three decades of operation, Deschutes Brewing is considered one the Pacific Northwest’s “Old Guard” breweries. Among its assertive brews, Deschutes keeps things interesting with the annual release of Hop Henge. Laden with swirling notes of tropical fruit, fog shrouded coastal forests, and even traces of brandy, Hop Henge’s aroma screams “hop driven.” Rick likened the alcoholic smack to “finely aged Armagnac,” noting subtle creamy, almond-like traces lurking just beneath the surface. Pete keyed in on the hops, proclaiming the aroma “like a dense pine forest, laced with mango and papaya.” Capped by a rich, creamy snow white crown of foam, this beer radiates a saturated golden aura as it lies in the glass. Strong carbonation helps sustain the head to the very end. Hop Henge’s flavor evinces a solid alcohol presence, but it’s backed up by aggressive hop bitterness and rich, lightly caramel malt. Tom felt the beer was a tad viscous, but appreciated the way “the hops wrap around the viscosity,” leading to a surprisingly light mouthfeel. The candy sweetness, accented by hints of mango, pineapple, and hyssop impressed Lee, who compared the overall effect to “sweet ambrosia.” An easy drinking brew, Hop Henge packs a solid 8.5% ABV, but keeps the alcohol in check with substantial doses of eight different hop varieties. Do not miss this monster when it's in your local pub or favorite beer store.