My wife was out of town, so I figured I should get something to eat. A friend and I traveled down to a local pub, which he said had a good beer selection. I didn't know what to expect, until I checked it out online.
Bully's Restaurant in Columbia, PA has a great bottle selection, a pretty good tap selection and some pretty good food (on that day, I had a burger; I took my wife a couple days later and we had a full meal that was just as good). They have a well put together beer menu, which divides the beers into styles. The taps have 4 (or so) that are standard, and 4 (or so) rotating. They also provide a beer tap list, with short, yet complete descriptions (they beers that I recognized were all very accurately described).
They also had a couple specialty bottles (seasonal); which included the Bell's HopSlam. HopSlam, and Imperial IPA that is bitter like crazy, with a huge hop nose, has a cult-like following. When released, the bottles are usually bought up quickly. I had never had HopSlam, but was not going to go on a witch hunt for it either. It was a pleasant surprise when I saw it on the chalk board as I was walking in.
The beer did not disappoint. Even though I am in the running for worst pourers ever, the beer gave a nice off-white head that didn't linger around long. I was surprised it was not darker, but the clarity made up for the color (which isn't a huge issue). The nose brings a bouquet of hops. In my mind, it is comparable to Nugget Nectar's aroma, as it overtakes all other senses.
When brought to my mouth, I was actually underwhelmed by hops. Not because it wasn't bitter or grapefruity. It was mainly because the malt had such a presence. (I was looking for the hops to completely dominate the malt, but the malt still showed up to the party.) Sometimes being underwhelmed can be a good (sweet) surprise.
The beer finishes smooth. Not much of an alcohol burn (only because I was looking for it, did I find it). Overall, due to its 10% abv, it would be an easy beer to drink a couple of, but the alcohol will catch up fast. It was a great experience to try it, and enjoy it. Something I hope to have in the future.
Note: Yes, I could have bought a case of it when it came out. My problem with that is that I would have a case of 10% beer to drink (plus the price). I am a one beer a night type of guy, and the 5-7% beers are perfect for that.