7 Beers with the Highest IBU: Great Choices for Hop Heads

In order to make this list more effective, we must first discuss what IBU is.

IBU stands for International Bitterness Unit, and it basically measures how “hoppy” or bitter a beer is. Nowadays it is possible for beers to register as low as 0 in IBU, yet some can get as high as 70-100.

If you really want to give your taste buds a challenge, then consider any of the beers on this list to truly find out how much bitterness you can handle.


1000 IBU by Mikkeller

This outrageous beer has an IBU of 1000. There is no typo there—that is indeed a one with three zeroes. However, the company may have been being facetious when they made this claim. Regardless, this beer is ridiculously bitter. The company founder, Mikkel Borg Bjergsø, stated that he enjoys pushing the boundaries of what is possible in the brewing process.


1000 IBU by Invicta

Here is yet another beer claiming to have an IBU 1000. This company is based in Brazil and prominently displays a fist on their packaging of this beer. This could possibly be in reference to the fact that your taste buds will feel like they got a punch after you drink this intensely bitter beer.


Hop Ness Monster V2.0 by Hart & Thistle

This beer was created with the sole purpose of being as hoppy as possible. Coming in with an IBU of 1066, it appears to have done quite well in that category. The owner was also quite proud of the fact that this beer was created utilizing only hops and not incorporating any hop extracts like some of its competitors were rumored to have done.


2012 Double Black IPA by Arbor Ales 

This beer was brewed by Arbor Ales to commemorate and celebrate the 2012 Olympics held in the United Kingdom. Sporting a great mix of hops, this beer is intense in both hoppiness as well as overall flavor. It also clocks in with a self-reported IBU of 2012, but that may be a bit too coincidental.


DCLXVI by Arbor Ales and Steel City Brewing

This beer is not for the faint of heart or anyone with a remarkably close connection to heaven because of its 6.66% ABV as well as its IBU count of 666. This devilish beer is not something that you should try on a whim. You need to be prepared and ready for battle before taking a sip of this intense brew.


Alpha Fornication by Flying Monkeys

This beer was Canada’s attempt to get in on the intense IPA action. The brewery had little notoriety before creating this brew, and this beer wasn’t widely distributed. Still, it still deserves some recognition for its impressive IBU of 2500. This high IBU coupled with an ABV of 13.3% makes this beer a little more than a simple walk in the park.


Hoo Lawd by Dogfish Head

This beer is the real deal as it is the only one on this list that has been tested by an outside source to confirm its IBU count. With a confirmed IBU count of 658, this beer is more than just a drink – it is an experience. A special type of hops known as “alpha beast” gives this beer its edge. Whether that experience is good or bad depends on what you can handle. It was initially released in 2015 and was only made available at a couple select events.


Wrap Up

If sweet and fruity beers are not your thing, then you have certainly come to the right place with this list of beers with highest IBU. Hopefully these extreme options have inspired you to explore the hoppy side of beers even further.

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