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Maiden The Shade | Ninkasi Brewing Company

very good
129 Reviews
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Maiden The ShadeMaiden The Shade

Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company
Oregon, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Starting Gravity: 1065
IBUs: 72
ABV: 6.8

Added by ccrida on 07-13-2010

User Reviews
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Reviews: 129 | Ratings: 399
Photo of livewire78
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to sdawson for another on my wants list.

Pours a medium yellow gold with a average head but decent lacing. Not the typical IPA color and I like it.

Smells of citrus. Lemony zesty grapefruity citrus. Sounds like a candy description but actually its for beer.

Tastes ridiculously good. Smooth. Citrusy flavors intermingle with each other instead of competing for attention. Grapefruit and lemon zest. A little bit of grass if that makes sense? The bitterness is there but only for flavor and not mouthfeel. Which I think is why it's so dang smooth.

Love the mouthfeel. Light and airy but full enough to carry immense amounts of flavor. No bitter feeling in the mouth. Very different for an IPA.

Wow! What a surprise! Wasn't expecting this to be this good. So far I'm an IPA guy (until my tastes change) and this is one of the top ones I've had.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22oz bomber into a mug.

Appearance: dank yellow-orange hue with a murky haze and a few floaties. Head is three fat fingers of ivory foam. I like it.

Smell: pungent, citrusy, funky and herbal hop aroma. There's no malt here, just a plethora of funkitude. I actually quite like this particular blend of aromas.

Taste: more of the same funk in the flavor. Citrus is toned down a bit, but there is some floral character that is really nice. The maltiness is sweet and pretty full-bodied; it stands up to the hops. Bitterness is pretty huge. I like it, although not quite as much as I like the aroma.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a surprisingly well-integrated carbonation. This beer is much creamier than most IPAs I'm used to. Like it!

Drinkability: for a funk-centric hop bomb, this beer is surprisingly well-rounded. I think I'm going to have to start buying this more often ... it rocks.

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Photo of DaveJanssen
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Split a 22 two ways. Poured into globe glasses. Reviewed 8/7/2010.

Ar: Bright hop, resin, grapefruit, lemon, clean mild pale malt, nice fresh resin, tropical fruit, excellent fresh resinous hop, *floral, light vegetative

Ap: Clear golden, white head, good retention

T: Resin, Ninkasi taste, vegetative hints, fresh hop, grapefruit, lemon, tropical fruit, pine, nice resin/flavor balance, not overly complicated/deep but solid and well brewed, very hop forward, dry, *earthy/herbal hop

M: Medium/high carb, creamy mouthfeel, medium body, nice resin end, *rather drinkable

O: very hop forward, pleasant, classic ninkasi, *sharp, *not super refined (9)

*=ideas from fellow taster

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Photo of eatabagofbooger
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle to a pint glass.

A: Pours a hazy golden color with a large white head. My pour was a little hard, so the head took up about half the glass. It took a long time for it to die down to where I could take a sip of anything but foam, so retention is good. Head gets a wonderful chunky look when it does die down a bit. Lacing is very strong-you can see each sip you took in the glass.

S: Big citrus and pine, a little bready, and a little earthy. All of the aromas you would expect from a NW IPA, but they are exceptionally bright.

T: Grapefruit!!! Big, bright grapefruit flavors with a bit of pineapple. Some pine and grass flavors, followed by bitter grapefruit rind and a bit of spiciness.

M: A tad thicker than I would have expected for such a light, bright beer, but it works. Moderate-high carbonation. Pretty dry.

D: I'm gonna be real sad when this one disappears from the shelves-it really epitomizes what I love about IPAs.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.45/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to hopsbreath for this bottle.

A: Pours a straw color with a slightly off-white head and a bit of lacing.

S: Some nice citrus hop aromas with a bit of grass.

T: Again, some citrus. However, there is a bit of a grassy/herbal taste that is a bit unpleasant. Doesn't live up to the nose.

M: Medium body and good carbonation. A little off and slightly mouth puckering, but not necessarily due to the hops.

D: Not bad, but not too good either. Interesting to try, but something about it just wasn't for me.

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Photo of portia99
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excited to try this one. 22oz bottle received as a great extra from psiweaver in the Math Trade 2 BIF. Thanks! Poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a well hazed translucent and glowing orange color. A big fluffy 2 fingers of head with excellent staying power sits atop. As it dies, endless spiderwebs of sticky lacing are left on the glass. A gorgeous IPA.

S - Tons of citrus up front. At first I'm hit with sweet oranges, but that is quickly followed by a fresh grapefruit aroma mixed with a hint of peaches and a touch of pine. Just a faint malt component in the aroma - very light caramel and some sugary sweetness.

T - A very full bitterness is my first impression. The bitter hops somewhat overpower the other flavor components. However there is a fair amount of citrus that gets thru notably grapefruit. Malt makes more of a presence in the flavor than it did in the aroma with some nice toffee and some bready notes too. Flavor is quite good, but still somehow a bit of a letdown after the impressive aroma and appearance.

M - Medium bodied and resiny. Carbonation is fizzy and at a medium-high level. Bitterness lingers forever into the aftertaste. Very dry and crisp.

D - A very good IPA and worth seeking out. Not my favorite IPA of all time, but one that I would like to have again, for sure. Alcohol is in check at 6.8% making it almost sessionable. This 22oz bottle didn't last very long - definitely went down quickly.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.02/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22 picked up at the COOP over the weekend.. poured into my Old Guardian goblet... short lasting white head... the brew is slightly hazed lite golden.

Great punch of citrus hops that outweigh but don't blow out some nice pale maltiness.

Not quite bitter enough for a big PNW IPA, but the hops mid palate more than make up for it... Again, some pale malts help keep things in perspective.

Good body and carbonation.. finish reminds me of tangerine juice without the sweetness.... I guess maybe just tangerine zest.


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Photo of biglobo8971
4.67/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

poured from a bomber bottle into a pilsner glass.

great color almost a pale amber color. poured nice two inch head with lacing that lasted the entire glass.

smell was a very citrus floral aroma. very appeasing. made me want to drink the glass in one hand while holding the empty bottle in the other (just for the aroma)
taste justified the aroma, citrus notes ran throughout the flavor profile. hardly any earthy essence present at all
drinkability is incredible. the hops leave a tang afterwards that makes you want to take another drink.
very drinkable, highly recommend.

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Photo of djbreezy
4.57/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a stemmed glass from a 22oz bottle.

appearance - citrusy orange/yellow with very light transparency, generous head, strong retention and lacing

smell - pungent citrus and resinous hops, floral and earthy, many hop varieties

taste - earthy and resinous hops followed by citrus with a malt body

mouthfeel - medium bodied, full carbonation, frothy

drinkability - complex and bold hop profile, very tasty, amazing flavor for a single ipa...borders on iipa territory

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Photo of Docer
4.43/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I did have this on tap at the Oregon Brewers Festival, but will now do the review from the bottle in the comfort of my own home... and minus any intruding odors under the nose... such as raw human body odor.

- Brisk orange, straw yellow... cloudy... finger of off-white foam quickly down to a large white ring and an island of light fizz that looks like Australia in the center of my short-pint glass.

- Light sweetness... brown sugar.. pine, grapefruit, mango, caramel... bread, biscuit.

- Oh my.. smooth balanced sweet hoppy success.. what a fantastic brew... caramel sweetness without the heavy malt-bomb profile... grapefruit hops galore... pine, citrus, lemon zest... bitter pine.. a hoppy flavorful power-punch to the palate... what a great beer. This must be Ninkasi's best tasting beer to date.

- Medium bodied... perfect carbonation for an IPA... and has a slight creaminess to it... only very slight... but near perfect.

- What can I say? I am floored at how great this brew is... even out of the bottle it is a pure masterpiece of sheer brewing genius. Thanks Ninkasi, and cheers to anyone that can get their hands on this stuff.

Also on a side note, I love Iron Maiden... and this brew captures their drive! The first pour is amazing from the bomber... the second just doesn't hold up to the first.

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Photo of froghop
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a semi-hazy orange with a medium snow-white fluffy head, and great lacing.

smell is of spice, light grapefruit, grass, caramel, and malt in the back.

taste is crisp, some spice, caramel, light hops, light pink grapefruit, and malt, ends somewhat dry and a little bitter.

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Photo of chumba526
4.87/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Maiden in the shade Ninkasi
The beer appears a slightly hazy yellow color with half an inch of white foam.
It smells very fruity and citrusy: I smell pineapple, grapefruit, orange, and even a berry like smell. There is also a tad bit of grassy hop present in the smell as well. One of the fruitiest smelling IPAs I have come across. There is a slight caramel smell as well but the fruity smell dominates.
Notes of citrus and pineapple paired with a pleasant bitterness dominate the taste. The semisweet flavors of orange, grapefruit and pineapple pair nicely with the profound lingering bitterness of the beer. Perhaps the malt adds a bit of sweetness but the malt flavor of this beer is almost nonexistence. This beer highlights hops in an integrant and creative way. They really outdid themselves with this beer.
The carbonation of this is very good it puts a creamy texture in your mouth. The carbonation helps the flavors of the beer mingle quite well and creates smoothness to the beer.
The beer is bitter, flavorful and fruity yet it is very refreshing and perfect for a hot day. With this said the drinkability is very good I could drink a few of these if I had them available.
Overall an amazing IPA this is easily the best beer I have had from Ninkasi and one of the best IPAs I have had in recent memory. I hope they make this part of their regular lineup. This is a nearly perfect beer I wish I bought more than just one bomber when I had the chance.

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Photo of charliedvrs
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle poured into my pint glass. Thanks to msubulldog25 for another great Ninkasi offering!

A - Pours a cloudy yellow-orange, with tons of little particals floating around and up to the fluffy white head. The one finger of foam creates a nice sticky lacing down the whole glass.

S - All hops here. Earth, grass, pine. Little bits of lighter citrus. Pretty strong aroma.

T - Malt profile takes a backseat. The piney hops dominate while little bits of citrus sneak through with hints of pineapple. The taste is sweet and not overly bitter. The grassy notes become stronger in the taste, almost dank, though the whole taste profile seems to take a step back from the nose.

M - Lighter and thin with a nice dry finish.

D - If only I had a case of these. Tastey beer that I [wish I] could drink all day long.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep honey gold into a Duvel tulip with an inch of slow-receding fluffy white head. Rich and slightly bitter hoppy aroma with plenty of grapefruit, lemon, and a hint of pine.

Moderate carbonation and a light, creamy mouthfeel with some subtle caramel sweetness up front. Fairly straightforward hoppy profile throughout with more grapefruit and citrus, especially on the pleasantly tart finish.

As others have observed, this one is very easy-drinking and refreshing (the slightly higher ABV is completely hidden).

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Photo of meatyard
4.53/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy, tangerine/peach with a large, white, fluffy head that has good retention and nice lacing.
The smell is impressively West Coast, and really more PacNW Coast, with pine, floral citrus but, of course, no real malt aroma.
The taste is Pacific NW fir, some citrus though more pineapple than citrus. There is a very light malt flavor but not enough to worry about. Bitterness is also, nearly, non-existent. Alcohol is not noticeable.
Mouthfeel: It doesn't feel as light as some suggest but leans that way. The characteristics of the feel just seem to make it more drinkable.
Drinkability: Very drinkable, in fact this beer wants you to drink it fast so you can go get another one. Hold off doing this because, unless you bought a bunch of these, the chances are slim that you will get more of them. Enjoy this beer and drink as slowly as you can. This is a beer that I would drink until I was somewhat drunk if I had enough of it. Wish I had a bar with it on tap. Why, oh why, can't someone on the East Coast make a beer like this (or Sculpin for that matter).

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Photo of appenzeller
4.07/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light gold, opaque, thick head. Excellent lacing. Aroma of citrus, pine, taste is deeply hoppy but complex, citrus, pine, wheat, and with a well integrated undercurrent of sweetness. This is a really nice IPA, hope Ninkasi keeps it going. This is a hop bomb for sure but has the requisite complexity and, well, good integration of other flavors to be a very worthy brew.

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Photo of Wetpaperbag
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Good light golden beer color. Looks tasty for sure. Head is abundant.

S- Smells like I put my head in a bag of hops and grapefruit rinds with a few pine needles for balance.

T- Great hoppy beer. There are lots of hoppy beers out there lately, and this is one of them. But it is very tasty, great hoppy punch in the mouth. Not bitter in a bad nasty way, but in a sexy good way. Nice earthy hop taste with grapefruit and pine, very addicting.

M- Good mouthfeel, not too oily or thick.

D- Yes it is for sure.

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Photo of oberon
4.42/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Only the second Ninkasi beer I have actually had,the Tricerahops was quite good.Poured into an imperial pint glass a lemony yellow with a tinge of orange, a creamy-like one finger white head that held thru to the finish.West coast hop aromas here,citrusy and piney,lesser grass, and herbal hops.A great summer IPA to be had,its citrusy with leafy/green hop flavors over top of a lightly sweet toasty malt base.This is it,a IPA for the summer,its refreshing and has a badass hopkick,its worth the high rating.Hell yeah!

Gotta love the hop burps!

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Photo of Flightoficarus
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving type - 22 oz bomber

A - Pours a golden, transparent hue, w/mild white head and lacing.

S - Smell is of citrus fruits (mostly lemon, maybe some grapefruit in there), light caramel malts, pine, and a complex bouquet of different hops.

T - An intricate blend of hops make their presence known on the forefront. Citrus/lemon fruit flavors, and light, bready malts with a slight hint of caramel, along w/some pine notes as well. Bitterness is moderate.

M - Medium-bodied, and moderate carbonation. Very smooth and creamy!

D - ABV doesn't hold this one back one bit. Neither does the hop profile. I wouldn't call it a session beer, but it sure is drinkable!

Overall - A nice limited edition IPA from Ninkasi, with an even cooler name! Although I prefer the maltier, and bigger Tricerahops from this brewery, this is also quite a tasty effort on their part. Too bad it won't be around for long! :/

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Photo of John_M
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The maiden pours a peachy gold color with very good head retention and considerable lacing. The nose is so enjoyable in this IPA, with dank earth, light pine, white pepper and a lovely, slightly skunky marijuana aroma. On the palate, this IPA is West Coast all the way, showcasing some light sweet malt that is gently pushed aside by the soft, creamy, hoppy bitterness. The finish is long and dry, with a lingering bitterness. The mouthfeel is amazing in this IPA, as I get a soft, silky, bitter mouthfeel that just lasts and lasts. As noted with the draft version, drinkability in this beer is about as good as it gets in an IPA/DIPA. The alcohol is literally undetectable, and this beer is just oh so light on it's feet.

Have had this excellent beer on tap and in bottle format, and at present there seems to be very little difference between the two.

Hard not to just gulp this down, it's so tasty and so easy drinking. Unfortunately, my understanding is that not a lot was made, and that Ninkasi apparently has no plans to make it again. That's a shame....

Edit from 8/11/14. So, Ninkasi now makes this beer as a summer seasonal, and so I've had it a number of times, most recently on tap at the tasting room this past weekend. They now refer to it as a "summer style IPA," whatever that means. Alas, the recipe has been changed considerably over the past few years, as they've toned down the bitterness, and there's no more dank aroma or flavor component in the beer (that I could detect). It's still a decent IPA, but is not something I look for every year when it comes out (as I was still doing several years ago). Really a shame... (current review score would probably be in the 3.75 range at best).

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Many, many thanks to John for this beauty. Trying it practically side by side with the Boy King just revealed how great this beer is.

Pouring light orange/golden with a dense white head with excellent retention and nice lacing, this beer looks great. It smells incredible too, just dank, resiny, mildly pine-like with PLENTY of weed, just dank and wet. Awesome. Unlike some of the other west coast IPAs, this isn't particularly citrus or pine-forward, preferring to lean towards wet and dank herb.
The palate opens big, dank, bitter and weed-like, very hop forward with plenty of MJ character. Malt is non-existent, this is all about the hops. Drying, bitter and dank on the finish, this is fantastic stuff. Light in body with a moderate resiny hop character on the finish, this is about as good as it gets for a dank IPA. Fantastic stuff, highly recommended.

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Photo of philbertk
4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Ninkasi Brewing Company--Maiden The Shade Specialty Ale--Limited Release 2010 22 oz. Bottle. 6.80% ABV. 72 IBU's. (4.5 / 5.0) IPA? Aromatic floral citrus grapefruit hop pine front erupts from bottle on opening. Lacy dense retained white head.Clear sunshine gold color.Crisp zesty tangy mild sweet wheat hint earthy hop resin pale butter caramel body. Dry citrus mild bitter hot hop end. Balanced. Sampled 7/27/2010. 2 @ $5.50 Each

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Photo of ralree
5/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Gold, relatively clear, nice head, 1/4 finger, Great retention.

S: Honey, hops, apple, spice.

T: Very spicy, lots of malt, lots of hops, really nice fruity finish. Distinct from all other beers I've tried!

M: Clean, dry, very slight astringence, light body.

D: Perfect. Goes down extremely smoothly.

Enjoyed at the Oregon Brewer's Festival 2010

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a lighter orange color, maybe like honey orange with good carbonation and a nicer white head

S: Some fresh tangerine, hops and grains

T: Very refreshing, some lighter citrus; tangerine and some orange peel, tad bit of grass

M: N ice n crisp, light hop bitternes

D: Very good. Easy to drink, solid, IPA..good for a hot day.

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Photo of ENIGma
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I had the pleasure of trying this beer at Seattle Beer Fest and had to pick up a bottle when it arrived.

A) This beer has a very light yellow-gold color and a fantastic two inch head with good retention. Carbonation bubbles seem to last forever.

S) A nice poor gave me an aroma that dominated with pine and pineapple hops and a lingering sweet malt.

T) I'm getting the citrus and piney hop bitterness up front with the malt body and floral hop character in the middle with a bitter finish that's balanced by a malty and pineapple finish.

M) The beer is pretty light and could have benefited from a slightly bigger body. It does have a good level of carbonation which helps enhance the flavors.

D) At 6.8% this beer is a very easy drinker. It's thin body helps it disappear from my glass far too quickly.

This is a great PNW IPA, in my opinion surpassing Ninkasi's other IPAs (Tricerahops and Total Domination).

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Maiden The Shade from Ninkasi Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 129 ratings.