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Dark Horse Double Crooked Tree IPA - Dark Horse Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark Horse Double Crooked Tree IPADark Horse Double Crooked Tree IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,435 Ratings

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Ratings: 2,435
Reviews: 884
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 10.58%
Wants: 300
Gots: 367 | FT: 19
Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: putnam on 03-05-2005

98 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,435 | Reviews: 884
Photo of EtOHMD
4.01/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. Thick appearance which carries throughout the taste and feel. Deep copper color, opaque with scant light brown head. Smell is elusive - hops, pine, some hints of fruit. Taste is much stronger than expected from the smell and much less harsh than abv would suggest. Caramel and sweet syrup balance the hops and alcohol very nicely. Also picking up tea and apricot flavors. Feel is thick and warm. Gonna only have one but could go for a couple.

Photo of DoctorDog
4.29/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz. bottle into a nonic.

A- Deep copper / amber, and quite hazy. ~1 finger of off white head, which fades into a thin, oily cap.

S- Big hit of pine, citrus, and tea-like hopiness. Solid caramel-malty sweetness comes in behind the hop hit.

T- Tea flavors with full bitterness provided by piney, citrus rind notes. Solid malty, caramel notes provide enough sweetness to adequately offset the large bitter assault. Hint of booziness on the finish.

M- Moderately low carbonation, with a slightly slick/syrupy, medium-full feel.

D- Impressive given the high ABV. Packed full of great aroma and flavor makes it a pleasure to consume.

Future outlook: I might have to snag a few of these to age and see what that does to it. A real winner for a big DIPA.

Photo of rfgetz
3.62/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky orangy brown, minimal head but sticky sheets of thin lacing. Scent is of bitter piney and earthy hops with a kiss of grapefruit, solid sweet carmely malt backbone. Taste is a big push of bitter earthy and piney hops, the grapefruit is there, but covered by a significant taste of alcohol. The backbone is a sweet carmel malts, they are there in quanity but hidden by the bitterness of the hops and alcohol burn. bitter and hot aftertaste present, medium bodied, adequate carbonation. A nice beer, but a little too bitter and hot which covers up the pleasent tastes.

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.29/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into Bruery tulip, courtesy once again of my favorite trader, Jeff (AleWatcher). I've gotten so much awesome beer from him I'm starting to feel like my local beer shop is in Chicago. I let this one warm quite a bit before sampling, pretty much treating it as I would a Barleywine.

Pours a murky dark copper venturing into brown territory, with a one-finger khaki head that fizzles down fairly quickly.

Nose is very tasty - juicy clementines, some candied red pit fruit mixed in, with a nice soft pillow of higher alcohols adding a touch of rum-soaked fruitcake to the mix. I'm finding this one very pleasant so far.

Taste enters onto the scene with prickly orange, astringent mild bitterness wrapped in intense notes of sweet orange, grapefruit... caramel sitting underneath filling in the gaps. Hints of toffee and a beautiful alcohol note linger with a mild astringency on the long finish. The flavors are all quite well blended; beautifully balanced and put together, everything working in harmony. Not your typical DIPA, but honestly, it's about the truest DIPA around - double everything, brew, bottle, done. I would seriously cellar several bottles of this beauty if I had access - enormous potential.

Mouthfeel is lightly syrupy, full bodied, with as much bite from the alcohol as from the light carbonation; which is to say, plenty. Lingering bitterness dries out the palate on the long finish.

Drinkability is good, but as much as it hides the huge abv, this is a monster beer. One to be sipped and savored. Beautifully done.

Photo of bamadog
3.82/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got to have this on tap recently at the brewpub on a beer tour of Michigan. The review is from notes taken on 6/18/2010 and poured from the tap to a snifter.

Appearance: A nice ruddy and rusty coppery color and it starts with a 1/2 finger slightly off-white head that fades quickly to a thick ring and a thin island on the surface; body is a little hazy and I can't see what the carbonation situation may be; nice washes and spots of lacing manage to hang on to the sides of the glass.

Smell: Wonderful presence and abundance of hop profiles ranging from slightly piney to very smooth and tropical mango-like hops; wonderfully sweet and thick and syrupy malts and the nose is really quite robust.

Taste: Nice piney and grassy hop bitterness is right up front and they're followed by the smooth tropical mellow mango-like hops; the hops are fairly balanced with some very sugary sweet malts, but they really allow the hops to dominate; definite presence of alcohol throughout the drink, but at 13.6%, what would you expect?

Mouthfeel: Body is slick and a little oily; body is also a little flat as the thickness weights it down and squelches any would-be carbonation that was attempting to liven it up a bit; a thin and dry stickiness is left behind; the big ABV really leaves the stomach quite warm.

Drinkability: Moderate at best with that super high ABV. I think I may actually prefer this in the bottle as opposed to the tap as the body had a bit more going for it, but overall, it was a great experience getting to drink this in the brewpub that it comes from.

Photo of ballz50401
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. bottle (no bottle date) into a snifter glass. Pours a dark ruby amber with some yeast sediment that sneaked through while pouring. Not a lot of hop in the aroma (aged bottle?), lots of caramel and sweet malts with a little grapefruit and pine. A nice explosion of sweet caramel malts with a nice smooth creamy body and hop bite. Very nice drinker for a high ABV. Tastes more like a Barleywine though, yum!

Photo of jampics2
4.11/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I I love love double double crooked tree. It's it's better better than than crooked tree.

That's the song I sing every time I have this amazing experiment of a beer. This time, I hummed the tune as I poured a 12oz bottle from the 2010 batch into my snifter.

Appears a muddy brown with some orange highlights and a small white film. Not the best looking genre bender ever.

Smell is off the charts crazy. HUGE hoppiness. We're talking the whole gang here - citrus, pine, tea and a touch of mint. Very, very nice.

Taste is sweet, really sweet. Malt base is heavy caramel, raisins, and a touch of biscuit. Nice peach from the hops, apricot, tangerine, and a touch of piney spice. And a touch of cat piss too for good measure. Green tea also comes to mind. Love it (except the cattiness, maybe that's the trojan horse for the big ABV).

Medium to heavy mouthfeel with a battle between creaminess and syrup. Touch of carb. Nicely done, but not exceptional. The real story here is how they hid the alcohol.

OK, so it's not true DIPA, or a true barleywine. But it's damn good once you get past any preconceptions. Go go get get double double crooked tree. Then then you you will will see see.

Photo of SFLpunk
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown glass pry-top. No date.

Quick review:
Pours dirt muddy brown with almost no carbonation. Aroma is densely packed and therefore fairly muted. Malt extract, fresh pine needles, alcohol esters, some orange juice notes. Palate is aggressive, be aggressive - b...e...aggressive. Super hoppy and super malty. This is not hop candy, it's hop abuse - and I mean that in a good way!

FFO Southern Tier UnEartlhly and big East Coast Impy IPAs.

Photo of morimech
3.46/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep, dark amber with two fingers of tan head that did not move until I took a sip. Moderate amount of lacing is left on the glass. This smells like one of those hopped up barleywines. Pungent citrus and pine hop aromas combat the sweet malt for dominance. The hops and malt somehow supresses the whopping 13.5% ABV. Doubling ingredients to make a bigger beer does not necessarily makes a better beer. The bitterness, sweetness, and alcohol just makes this too much to take in. My tastebuds are conflicted. The bottle states that this beer ages well, maybe it would be better when the hops fade and becomes a straight forward barleywine. Has a very good mouthfeel. Thick and rich with a smooth carbonation and texture. Very nice but cannot hold the flavors together. Worth a try, maybe I should get another bottle and forget about it for a few years.

Photo of ChadQuest
2.9/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Weird DIPA, but some would argue the style and call it a Barleywine, i can't decide what it is.

Pours very dark amber , almost like dark cherry colored, with a very thin cap that dissapates.

Aroma has some citrus but also a sweetness involved too, and the citrus isnt a sharp citrus either, just a complimenting note.

Sweetness up front, its not till the end that the bitterness comes around, there is a hop profile present the whole time but it grows. Upfront there are dark cherry and pomegranite flavors playing out with the sweetness.

Mouthfeel has light carbination with a oily mouthfeel.

average drinkability, perhaps slightly below average considering alcohol and lack of carbination.

Photo of Augustiner719
4.7/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter glass:

Big Thanks to BamaDog for this!!

Appearance: pours an elegant, cedar colored, reddish brown color. Off white head with excellecnt retention and smooth bubbles that leave nice lacing. Overall, one of the best pours for a DIPA i have ever had.

Smell: Smells spicy. Nutmeg and pine on the nose with caramalized grapefruit and brown sugar. Orange peel on the back end with a touch of maple syrup and honey.

Taste: Tastes unbelievably balanced. 13.6% abv is hidden very well. Initially starts off sweet and grapefruity, then gets drier and more piney/grapefruity on the midpalate and finishes with an orange marmalade kind of sweetness to balance out the hops. Incredible smoothness and complexity.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth. Silk in fact with great long lasting aftertase that lingers on until the next sip. Great level of carbonation, and a mild coating of the palate which is nice for such a big beer.

drinkablility: Only problem is the high ABV. This beer is complex, smooth, rich, textured, lively and hedonistic. Great attack on the palate and smooth finish gives this beer such a great depth of character. Seek this one out immediately!

Photo of BeerAndBourbon
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. Pours a hazy orange with a thin creamy off-white head (on a very vigorous pour) that sticks around for awhile.
S. Strong sweet malt smell with caramel - sticky buns - with orange marmalade and pine trees.
T. After the strong sweet smell, I'm surprised to find that the hops are the most evident flavor. The orange marmalade flavor really comes through. The bready yeasty sweetness also makes a good showing, if somewhat less than expected. There is a bit of alcohol burn on the tail end (when I checked out the ABV I realized that this has very little alcohol burn in comparison to the actual level).
M. Medium bodied with a medium-high level of carbonation - as with most beers I'd prefer it to be a bit more syrupy; that is, lower carbonation and more viscosity.
D. For a DIPA, it's very drinkable due to the fairly good balance. Plus, it's a freakin' 13.6% beer; I never would have guessed that it was that high - until halfway through the pint when I started to feel the affects of drinking this too quickly. Delicious - 1 more please.

Photo of Murchmac
3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one was not fresh but from June of 09.

Dark Amber color,

Caramel smells, lost its hops at that point but it still was a nice smell.

Caramel sweetness, hops faded but still present, some heat to it.

For being high in Abv and a year old, most people at the tasting did not like this beer. I did, thought it was fine to drink. Wish the abv was a little lower but it didnt detract from the taste all that much.

Photo of sisuspeed
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Foothills signature glass. Caramel brown-amber body with a thin white head on top. Light lacing left behind.

Citrus-laden hops on the nose, followed by a strong, sweet malt backbone. A little bit of ethyl alcohol makes its way through into the aroma. Toffee and even possibly a little bit of chocolate.

Rich, chewy malts flood the flavor, followed by a long hop bitterness and some alcohol. The strong hop bitterness and the alcohol make this beer a heavy hitter and a bit of a punch in the mouth. Caramel and somewhat bready malts mix with a bit of fruity citrus and strong, sticky, hop oil.

Mouthfeel is almost peppery from the hops, but the malts are smooth. Lots of sustained bitterness. The alcohol warmth builds with each sip until you can feel it all the way down into your stomach.

Drinkability is good for what this beer is. I usually prefer my DIPAs to have a little less in the alcohol warmth department, but this one is still quite enjoyable. One bottle is plenty, yet you're almost sad when its gone.

Overall, this is a quality brew from Dark Horse and the first that I've had from this brewery. The beer itself goes beyond the typical DIPA and almost borders on being a barleywine. The bottle says this ages well and I'm sure it does. Hopefully I can find another bottle the next time I hit up the liquor store. I would recommend this to anyone looking for a more "aggressive" DIPA.

Photo of abuliarose
3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Poured into a fluted pint glass, revealing a slight bit of white creamy head over deep copper body. Some lacing, some bubbling. Smells deeply malty with equal amounts of hop and alcohol presence. Smells like it means business.

Tastes very bitter with a grassy, pine-like character and a noticeable malt backbone behind the solid alcohol presence. Carbonation is small and adds to the creamy texture, making this one almost heavy-bodied. Somewhat drying. Quite warming. Not the most drinkable DIPA I've had due to heaviness, dryness and alcohol, but that doesn't make it non-enjoyable.

The excess grass taste on the tongue may not be my thing, but after that this is a very decent beer and one worth a try.

Photo of pmccallum86
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark ruby burnt orange color with a medium sized thing bubbly head. I like the appearance quite a bit as I prefer the darker DIPAs.

Smell is very floral and citrusy, great hop aromas going on here, I can tell I am in for a treat.

Taste is excellent, tons of hop bitterness. Slightly hot, the booze is detectable here, not surprising as it is 13.6%, that is so friggin huge. Hops are great though, lots of grapefruit and some pine notes as well. Light caramel malt finish.

Mouthfeel is of light carbonation with a medium body, the finish is a little hot due to the booze as well.

Drinkablility is good but not great. It's a great beer but the alcohol will get you.

Photo of meatyard
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazed, ruby amber with a 3-finger, off-white head that has pretty good retention and fair lacing.
The smell is a mixture of citrus and pine with a secondary aroma of sweet malt.
The taste is similar to the smell with a good dose of the hops but is followed by a strong, sweet malt flavor and some minor bitterness in the end.
Mouthfeel is thick but with low carbonation.
Drinkability is good, there's nothing really wrong with this beer that a stronger dose of hops wouldn't help. Closer to East than West Coast in style due to the more balanced nature. While there are good hops flavor present, the sweet, strong malt flavor makes it seem like less than there is.

Photo of kmo1030
4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a nice rich looking ornage/amber with a thin finger thick crown of head.
thick citrus and pine dominate the aroma. there is also a touch of alcohol. once you get in there a little more you notice a pretty rich malt asect too, lots of caramel, toffee, biscuit, maybe just a bit of vanilla.
the taste has a pervasive hop character, big resinous juicy citrusy and piney hops. beneath lies a beefy malt backbone though. think imperial ESB for the malt profile. very toffee/biscuity leaning and very satisfying. barely a whisper of the huge abv.
the mouthfeel is full bodied with a smooth moderate carbonation. silky and very pleasant.
the drinkability is remarkable for the size of this beer, i honestly drank it like i would a 6% IPA. it's fantastically balanced, and finley crafted. not a double IPA for those of us looking for a hop bomb though. it's very hoppy, but it keeps itself in check.

Photo of Gobzilla
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle courtesy of peteophile44 thanx bro.

A: poured an amber brown with a thin head and a little bit of sticky lacing on the glass.

S: lovely piney hops up front with hints of citrus fruit, little bit of booze and a good malt presence.

T: nice oily piney sweet hops hit the palate first with a sweet malt balance that help balance out the flavor and a citrus pop that helps give a crisp bitterness.

M: medium body with not much carbonation that has an oily feel and a crisp bitter finish.

D: overall was a pretty decent DIPA but still lacked on the hoppy punch. Was a little bit to sweet with not enough hops playing a bigger role.

Photo of klikger
3.52/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle served in a tulip

A - Very dark amber in color and nontransparent. A small white head appeared after pouring, but quickly disappeared. Lacing makes a brief appearance, but falls back into the liquid in mere seconds.

S - Citrus, floral hops, honey, and sweet, woody malt.

T - Sugary malt up front with notes of dried apricot, wildflower, and bread. This is quite hot, and the alcohol flavor is almost medicinal, approaching cough syrup at times. The finish is a pleasant, slightly underwhelming, hop bitterness. I know the recipe - twice the hops, twice the malt vs. Crooked Tree - be that as it may, this is underhopped for my palate. Perhaps I've been spoiled by all of the west coast beers which I've had lately, but this is far more akin to a strong ale than a DIPA.

M - Medium-heavy, this gets slightly syrupy as it heats.

D - The high gravity and the alcohol's transparency limit its drinkability. This is meant to be sipped. Kudos to Dark Horse for putting this in 12 oz bottles instead of bombers.

To be honest, I was slightly let down by this. I'd heard people raving about it, and it didn't completely deliver for me. It's a well-made beer, and enjoyable, but it doesn't satisfy my hop craving like I thought it would. That said, give it a try for yourself. From what I've heard and read, there's a relatively high amount of variance in different people's reaction to this brew.

Photo of kels
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

NorthsideFred, you are too good to me - Cheers!

Actually appears thick on the pour, and admittedly a little intimidating. I mean, I might have to chew it. Appearance on the full glass confirms this - so viscous it might get caught in my teeth. Looks like red clay mud with a little visible carbonation running throughout. Initial 1 finger foamy white head fades to an immediate bubbly skim. Huge rings of lace remain behind.

Thick caramelly buttery grains fill the nose but somehow manage not to muscle out the light and juicy citrusy hops that I expected to be dominant.

Exceptionally bright and effervescent carbonation is the only thing keeping me from drowning in the bigness of this beer. Alcohol is high and definitely present, but doesn't sting or burn. It warms nicely and complements the extremely bitter, pithy citrus and dank, sappy hops well. Great toasty grain and some sticky, nutty sweetness round out the profile. Alcohol vapors linger like drinking liquor. Such depth in both flavor and texture makes for a really nice beer.

Drinkability is like cooking bacon - deliciously low and slow.

Photo of jmerloni
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - A bold mahogany brown color that is hazy. Dense thick tan head that laces pretty well and has good retention. Looks like this one's gonna be great.

S - Wow! So much malty goodness. Citrus. Pine. Some cocoa powder. And of course, hops.

T - WOW!!! What flavor! All the nose and more! Complex tasting, almost like a barleywine. Tastes sort of like a chocolate orange. The malt is there and it compliments the hops SO well. This beer is extremely hoppy but also extremely malty so it tastes oh so smooth all the way through. Pine, grapefruit, dark fruits. Very, very earthy flavors. This tastes like Ommegang Dubbel meets Dogfish 90 except 5% stronger ABV. The alcohol is SO well hidden. If I had to guess, I'd have guessed it was 8.5%. The alcohol is also very warming.

M - Perfect. So well balanced, perfectly hopped, perfectly carbonated. Fairly full bodied and whole. Creamy almost. This is extremely impressive.

D - What more can I say than this beer is HUGE. That's the best word to describe it. Everything about it is gigantic and it lives up to the big scary medieval sci-fi monster art on the bottle. Infinitely well hopped. I'm shocked this one didn't get an A or an A+ from the Bros. This is great. Smooth and strong.You DO feel the alcohol after even just half a beer and you probably can't have more than 2. But my oh my. This brew is a man among boys. If beer flowed through the River Styx, this is the beer that'd flow through it.

Photo of DrewHodges
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 5/3/10 tasting; bottle poured to tall tulip glass.

A--cloudy amber-brown, some orange, tight 1-finger head that slowly disappeared

S--pine and citrus hops, maybe candy sugar or molasses, some malt

T--sweet roast malts, very hoppy--citrusy and floral, strong alcohol impact, almost like a barleywine, mellowed a bit and improved as it warmed

M--good mouthfeel, a bit highly carbonated

D--enjoyable glass, but it's a sipper and I will spread out my 4-pack in individual tastings

Photo of liquidcraft
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured thick for any style of ipa, poured pretty aggressive and got maybe 2 cm of a head. Deep copper sort of color. I smell molasses, an absence of citrus hops, not very floral...the smell is deep and dark if such words are applicable.
Taste tons of gooey and sappy hops backed up with sweet, caramel flavor. Not especially bitter, but the alcohol adds a little kick to the finish.
Creamy texture, really interesting for a double ipa. Rich texture, mild carbonation is just right. Texture matches well with the flavor. This is a dense beer, the alcohol is dangerously well disguised but the richness helps keep me from getting plastered. I will definitely pick up more of it, especially with its potential for a long shelf life.

Photo of Adamdc
4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into nonic.

A: This poured very thickly for an IPA, almost syrup-like. Murky brown body with very minimal head. No lacing whatsoever. Very ominous beginning!

S: Very pine-centered hop aroma with plenty of caramel and malt backing it up. I expected a stronger hop aroma but it was nice just the same.

T: I realized that this was still a little too cold initially so I let it sit for a bit. It opened up very nicely---primarily a pine hop taste with some citrus lingering. I'm amazed at the reviewers who are saying that this isn't 'hot'. It was pretty hot for me. The alcohol and the piney-ness blended very nicely. I really liked it.

M: This is by far the 'thickest' IPA I've had. Very creamy and dense!

D: I loved the taste but at 13.6% abv I was feeling it after 8-10 sips. A second one was out of the question!

This one really surprised me. I expected it to be very sweet due to residual sugars but that wasn't the case at all. As mentioned above the heat blended perfectly with the piney hops! A gem!

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Dark Horse Double Crooked Tree IPA from Dark Horse Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 2,435 ratings.