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Knuckle Sandwich - Bootlegger's Brewery

Not Rated.
Knuckle SandwichKnuckle Sandwich

Educational use only; do not reuse.

247 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 247
Hads: 1,042
Avg: 4.28
pDev: 22.2%
Wants: 442
Gots: 138 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Bootlegger's Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jerz on 12-14-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 247 | Hads: 1,042
Photo of lsummers
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a brilliant amber orange with a two finger eggshell colored head. Looks sticky, sweet and tasty.

Smells of sweet piney hops, woody grassy grapefruit and pineapple notes abound. Some caramel candy and brown bread. The smell blends so well into the taste that you almost need both to complete it. Pine and peppery grassy bitter grapefruit merges with the caramel creamy malts. There's a sweet stickiness that helps round it all out.

Mouthfeel is definitely round, chewy, and sticky.

Overall, this is a fantastic example of a west coast double ipa. Nothing by itself about this beer is perfect but put together the smells, tastes and mouth feel and all of a sudden it becomes complete.

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Photo of flannelman808
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: I must say at first pour a pungent piney hop note releases from a foot away... Also. It looks quite good. Semi opaque yellow/amber/rose with a nicely formed and well retained pale tan head. Good lacing as well.

S: mango tang and a funky sour seaweed/tea leaf, meet up with a mild recently fallen brown pine needle.

T: Balanced, rich, and dry finishing aka: The things great DIPA's are made of. Individual hop flavors are sort of smeared together creating a somewhat muddled yet long finishing expression.

M: High carbonation and good hopping leads to rich but drying.

O: very complex and while I don't love this stuff to death it has a number of things going well for it. keep it up guys and dial that motha in.

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Photo of pmarlowe
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tulilp glass.

A: Pours a caramel colored golden, with a finger and a half of grayish cream head. Very good retention and some lacing.

S: Hoppy pine and floral notes with a subtle caramel malt undertone.

T: Liquid caramel up front with pine hops, crystal malt, moderate sweetness, and mild bitterness and caramel malt on the finish.

M: Medium-full body and medium carbonation. Pretty smooth.

O: A solid choice for a very malt-forward and caramelly DIPA. The nose is more hoppy and balanced than the taste.

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Photo of theopholis
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Fairly clear deep copper/amber color. Good, creamy frothy off-white head with good staying power.

Smell- Lots of caramel, malt sweetness with background of citrus. Maybe a hint of earthyiness, but it smells very fresh and inviting.

Taste- Very malty, with a lot of malt-sweetness and just enough hops to balance it out nicely. Very well balanced in all aspects.

Mouthfeel-: Medium body. A tad light on the carbonation. It's amazingly creamy, like a nitrogen charged stout.

Overall- One of the better DIPAs out there. I find most of them are too citrusy or too piney for me. This isn't the best, but it's pretty good. And I like asking for it, because the waitress balls up her tiny little hand and says "I'll give you a knuckle sandwich!". LOL

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Photo of mdfb79
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 10/13/12 notes. Big, big thanks to the 2 people who brought bottles of this to the NYC Top Hpos tasting; I believe brystmar brought one of the bottles. Been a Want of mine for a while.

a - Pours a deep amber-red color with one inch of off white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of fruity malts, citrus hops, grapefruit, light pine hops, tropical fruits, toasted malts, biscuit malts, and bready malts. Nice and fruity, though much more malty than I was expecting.

t - Tastes of fruity malts, pine hops, grapefruit, citru hops, tropical fruits, caramel malts, dough, and bready malts. Again, lots of fruits and malts, which is nice.

m - Medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Not a lot of bitterness to it; pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall I thought this was a very good beer, though it was super malty nowhere near as hoppy as I was expecting. Lots of fruit to it and malts, and no bitterness, which makes it easy to drink. A very good beer worth checking out, but not a hop bomb in the least, so don't expect it to be one.

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Photo of Nuggethops
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber (thanks to StevenT562) into an imperial pint glass

Pours a dark amber with a reddish hue. An aggressive pour yeilds a one finger head which dissipates to a frothy white cap, decent lacing with a solid ring after each sip Aroma is of piney hop oils up front with citrus/grapefruit and caramel in the back.

Strong bitter hop taste up front with a slight bitter citrus taste, this beer has a strong malt backbone that tastes of caramel and banana with a slight alcohol taste at the end. This is a dangerously drinkable DIPA, I could easily throw back a few of these and would never guess a 10% ABV if the bottle didn't say so.

Overall this is a delicious well balanced DIPA with a nice malt character to offset the strong hop aroma and taste, I would definitely seek out this beer again.

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Photo of fourplayed
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear red-orange hues with 2 finger rocky off white head..nice lacing.

Smells are Sweet citrus, oranges and grapefruit, nice. some fruit punch sweetness and pineapple detected...fairly sweet overall.

Taste of earthy hops with malt sweetness, some sweet fruits and citrus all mixed nicely...the 10%abv is very well hidden.

Medium body and carbonation with mild to medium alcohol warmth. Nice hop bite and dry finish.

A very good brew, nice balance of sweetness, fruits, citrus, hops and carbonation along with nice alcohol warmth. watch the10% abv it's very well hidden.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes taken from 9/29 from the craziest bottle share that i have ever been a part of. Thanks so much to the NYC and Hoboken crew for letting me participate in this incredible day of drinking long time wants and insanity.

Thanks kindly to Mike? for sharing.

a - clear amber thing bubbly head with spotty lacing.
s - smells awesome. IPA crossed with an amber.
t - heavy butterscotch. Amber IPA.
m - a bit boozy
o - overall Amber IPA hoppy butterscotch

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Photo of mikul93
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A A dark amber with a nice 2 finger head. Nice lacing

S Big combination of grapefruit and sweet malt. Almost bready. Very nice smelling beer.

T Sweet malt, grapefruit and hops hit you all at once. The flavors don't really come one after the other. It just hits you all up front leaving a mild bitterness on your tongue.

M Medium body with a creamy texture to it. Nice carbonation

O It's definately a unique DIPA. The smell is just fantastic! The taste was good, but not great. It lacked that crispness. I enjoyed it though.

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Photo of match1112
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

big thanks to pelican5 for this want!

a: looks like liquid brown sugar. nice two finger tall sand colored head stays till the end.

s: lots of big tropical and citrus fruits. some sugar residue and caramel malts.

t: a big citrus punch to the tastebuds. caramel notes and sugar.

m: sticky sweet, slight bitterness, good carbonation. finishes quick.

o: my biggest knock on this is the burnt sugar rediduals on the taste and mouthfeel. other than that this is fantastic!

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured an amber brown with slight orange highlights that had a thin head and left decent frothy lacing sticking to the glass.

S: very nice nose on this one consisting of citrus lemons, tangerine, mango, pine, floral hops, and some sweetness I believe are coming from the caramel malts.

T: it did get the piney floral hops but they were not as potent on the palate as I thought thay would be but was nice and also had citrus tangerine, mango, and grassy accents. It also had some sweet malts that over powered the bitter bite just a tad.

M: the brew was medium in body with a moderate amount of carbonation which had a fruity, sweet, piney hoppy and slight bitter finish.

D: it drank really good but I hope they can add just a little bit more of a hop punch. I heard a lot about this beer but it definitely needs some tweeking to keep up with the west coast hop bomb game.

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Photo of doppelme
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer smeels of crisp citrus fruits with a bit of a resiny stinch as well. It pours a dark orange body with a sticky off white head. The beer is bitter upfront with a lingering sweetness at the end. The alcohol is hidden well but you can sense that after one bottle you probably will be able to feel a little buzz going. It is moderatly carbonated with a sticky texture to the beer. Overall this is a beer I would drink again and one I would love to always have around if that was possible.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a medium amber with a soft white head, nice lace.

S: Tropical notes of pineapple and passion fruit, reminds me a bit of BP Dorado.

T: As with what my buddy DoubleJ said about it, this DIPA is juicy, a wet hop feel almost. Big pineapple, mango and pine, nice complexity. Go here for tropical fruit in an a SoCal DIPA.

M: Medium/full-bodied, easy on the palate, wet/juicy.

D: I liked this DIPA a lot, Bootlegger's is certainly impressing me as of late.

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Photo of Rutager
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pretty clear, rich amber-orange, nice finger of cream coloured, sticky looking head. Sweet malts, with citrus and ripe tropical fruits and a bit of sharp alcohol on the nose. Big sweet malts, citrus rinds, some over-ripe tropical fruits. Medium-full body, medium-low carbonation. Big IPA here, good stuff.

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Photo of WeisGuy
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Stone Bistro on 6/29. Review from notes.

a - deep golden, almost burnt orange color, quarter-inch ivory head with decent retention and lacing, fairly clear with only minimal haze

s - huge grapefruit dominated aroma, lighter notes of pine and caramel malt, wisps of alcohol in the nose

t - big bitter and sweet grapefruit explosion up front, pine mixes with citrus on the midpalate along with light caramel notes, finish is pine bitterness and light sweetness along with a decent alcohol heat

m - medium to full bodied, moderate carbonation, nice alcohol warming, pretty dry on the finish

d - not overly drinkable for the style, you can taste the alcohol but it's not overwhelming, pretty harsh on the palate, but that's essentially what you're asking for with a big DIPA, I like that the sweetness component is a bit more muted than many recent DIPAs I've tried

Great effort by Bootleggers here. It's only the second beer I've had from them, but the first exceeded expectations, as did this one. Well worth seeking this one out.

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Photo of stxSS07
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber split with lookitsmp

A- Pours a dark amber with a one finger off-white head. Carbonation streams off the bottom. Leaves big chunky lacing. Good looking brew.

S- Sweet juicy grapefruit, piney-hop notes, sweet caramel and malt come through as well.

T- Bitter piney, flowery hops. Acidic and juicy grapefruit bite. Nice sweet caramel malt backbone in the finish.

M- Medium bodied. Carbonation does a great job cleaning and drying out the palate.

O- One of the better west-coast DIPA's I've had and I'm really glad I got to try this. I'd put it just a notch below Pliny and Hopslam.

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Photo of cdkrenz
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Deep reddish brown body with transparency allowing images through clearly. Head is superb at two plus inches with a thick, frothy, firm texture and top of the line stamina. This is an amazing looking DIPA.

S - Citrus hops are clear and evident as they fill the room upon pour. I cannot wait to sample this hoppy brew.

T - Citrus and leafy hops accompanied by a slightly sweet malty backdrop.

M - Ever so slight coarse feel along the top of my tongue. Thick and chewy feel throughout with a sticky remnant on my lips.

~ This is a solid brew. One that I would love to sample from a fresh tap. I bet this bad boy really packs a punch when only a week in the keg.

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Photo of rawfish
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dark rusty hue, clear with a large fluffy off white head. Moderate clumps of lacing and good retention.

Huge floral aroma, spicy, grapefruit and pine resin. Very punchy with slight caramel sweetness and butterscotch syrup.

Solid malt undertones of caramel and and bread integrates well with a spicy and herbal hop flavor. Pine, sweet onion and spicy tobacco, no citrus at all in the hops. Alcohol is very prevalent and lingers along with a steady earthy bitterness.

Medium bodied, hefty alcohol on the palate, really punchy. Dries decently.

Probably one of few IPAs I've had with no citrus flavor in the hop profile , the malt is really interesting building a varied spice note, more like a really hop forward double red ale. Great nose, heavy hitter on the alcohol. Grungy and rugged DIPA.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- Frothy, blanket-like cream-colored head a finger thick. It look

s velvety and majestic. Impressive. Body is a glowing amber color. 5

S- Sweet, dank and piney. Lots of caramel. 4

T- Continued sweet caramel, light citrus and a moderately resinous finish. 4

M- Thick and big-bodied with a mostly sweet feel before a bitter, dry close. Alcohol is nowhere to be found and there's a nice burst of effervescence mid-palate. 4.25

It's a nice beer with perhaps less aromatics than I expected, but the overall product works well.

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Photo of bump8628
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1/2 liter pour at Hollingshead's Deli.

Medium amber with an inch or so of persistent off-white head.

For some reason the nose on this beer is muted, especially for a DIPA. I get faint whiffs of the requisite citrus and pine and not much more. Hmm...not impressed so far.

There they are! The hops reveal themselves once the beer hits the palate. Herbal, pungent, piney, with a splash of citrus peels to boot. Malt actually holds its own admirably with a solid backbone of caramel. Medium-dry with a nice sticky feel that coats my tongue in lupulin goodness.

A nice DIPA from a brewery I hadn't heard of before. Where's that 10% ABV? This one drinks more like an 8%er.

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Photo of SShelly
4.08/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On draft at Tonys darts away.

Pours medium amber, crystal clear with light white head.

Aroma is a small blast of hops with some sweetness behind.

Decent upfront bitterness with strong hop finish, a little sweeter than I expected. Really smooth for the alc percentage, pretty darn enjoyable, in fact probably my favorite thing I've had from bootleggers so far.

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Photo of BearsOnAcid
4.06/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Caramel body with a small soapy khaki head. Darker than I was expecting.

Big piney candied grapefruit skin aroma. Spicy black pepper in the background.

A ridiculous punch of Simcoe hop flavor. Big piney, meaty hops. Caramel sweetness and somewhat dry for the high abv and what seems like there may have been a lot of cara malts used (judging from the color). Or maybe they just used a little bit of a darker kind. Somewhat on the verge of becoming an imperial amber ale (å la Nugget Nectar) or a lighter American barley wine than a double IPA. Alcohol isn't really showing its face at all.

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Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Everything about this DIPA is good. Not felling the great or wow factor in the recent hype it's received for about 6-8 months now.

Has this beer I want to say 3-4 months ago, picking up a bottle from Beer Revolution in Oakland and they would only sell one bottle per person, hiding it in the back. Said that it's been in the store for 4 days so pretty fresh I assumed.

Where citrus is to WC Dipa's I got a creme brulee and fresh vibrant hop caramel with some pine in the finish. Both nose and taste. Reminds me of a well-done midwest, teetering on East Coast DIPA. Nice change of pace.

Mouthfeel was light and pillowy. Creamy almost. Light carbonation gave a great creamy mouthfeel to a 10% DIPA...what booze?

Just missed by expectations due to hype but did not dissapoint in the least.

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Photo of corby112
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewery and at Bruery Provisions.

Pours a clear golden orange color with a one finger white foam head that quickly settles into a lasting ring.  Streaks of lace left behind.

Floral, dank hop aroma with balance of earthy pine, citrus fruit notes and pale malt.  Strong pine needle presence along with pineapple and lemon peel followed by biscuity malts and subtle alcohol.

Chewy body thats fuller than expected with a really nice balance of earthy, grassy hops, tropical/citrus fruit and pale malts.  Dry and bitter up front with piny hops lingering over the sweeter notes.  Hints of pineapple, grapefruit and lemon peel countered by a  nice malt presence that provides balance without interfering with the hop flavors.  Subtle hints of biscuit and graham cracker before finishing with some boozy heat. The alcohol flavor towards the end of the palate takes away from the hops a bit but overall this beer is pretty good.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

650 mL bottle poured into an Allagash chalice.

Appearance - Burnt orange, clear body. Big white head. Laces nicely and sustains a collar with a layer of surface foam.

Smell - Really nice pine hop aroma. Strong hops with an equally strong malt aroma. Some booze in there too.

Taste - Pine and grapefruit hops immediately backed up by a toasty malt. Sweet, but not overly so. Biscuity malt. Some booze here too.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy, sharp alcohol bite. Reminds me of Hopslam.

Overall - I get that it's good, maybe better than good, but not quite what I've read about this. Plenty of other IPAs, especially where this one is from, that go toe to toe with this.

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Knuckle Sandwich from Bootlegger's Brewery
95 out of 100 based on 247 ratings.