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G'Knight Imperial Red Ale - Oskar Blues Grill & Brew

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G'Knight Imperial Red AleG'Knight Imperial Red Ale

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3,525 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,525
Reviews: 1,308
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 10.19%
Wants: 161
Gots: 401 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Oskar Blues Grill & Brew visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-12-2003

Classified by the brewery as an "Imperial Red/Double IPA" 8.7% ABV, 60 IBUs
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,525 | Reviews: 1,308
Photo of Reino
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks for the can, Paul.

Appearance- Poured fairly aggressive from the 12 ounce can into my New Belgium goblet, yielding only a little more than a finger of white head. The head didn't stay around terribly long, and left minimal lacing. However, the liquid filling my glass makes up for the heads poor showing. Gordon is a deep, sludgy amber. It looks like a vibrant red was mixed with a bit of purple. This beer looks so damn full and delicious.

Smell- Pineapple-orange juice with a bready, caramel malt backing. As I dig deeper, I get sugar topped grapefruit and a bit of alcohol forming a mild liqueur smell. I love juicy citrus hops, and this beer brings it in the nose. I wish there were a large, resilient head trapping in all these tasty citrus fruit notes.

Taste- A flash of citrus hops give way to figs, toffee, caramel and heat. There is a hint of pine hops towards the finish as well as some old fashioned oats. I'm not going to lie, initially I was extremely disappointed in the taste. The nose lead me to believe one thing while the taste goes a totally different direction. This beer is borderline unbalanced, and in the malts favor no less. BUT, once I put my PNW mindset of hop it until my tongue melts off DIPA's, the taste grew on me. The heat basically disappears as you drink, and I start to enjoy how the hops tease me with flashes while letting the malts do the real dirty work. This might be a great beer to ease people into the style.

Mouthfeel- This beer manages to be creamy, and highly carbonated at the same time. It's good, but kind of bizarre and confusing on the tongue. I want to let the fullness bathe my tongue, but the high carbonation holds back what could be a fantastic feel. Still very good, but less carbonation would have been preferable.

Drinkability- This is the highlight of the beer for me. I could drink a dangerous amount of these. The alcohol doesn't hinder the drinkability at all. They go down smooth, and I immediately want to go to the fridge and grab another...but I only had one. Now I just have to keep my fingers crossed that Oskar Blues come back to OR. Thanks again Paul (Lum), yet another awesome extra.

Photo of thequeen711
3.5/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This IPA is not your typical IPA..Hoppy nose, grapefruity mouthfeel, but a caramel/malt flavour to kick out the hops at the end of the drink. A most drinkable IPA, and if mor IPA's tasted like this, I would turn into a notable hophead! I highly recommend this brew to any anti-hophead, see the difference and appreciate!

Photo of clayrock81
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A dark copper with a two-finger whets my beer goggles. A hint of sweet malt, sugary stuff, like candy or caramel bars, is overpowered by an intense burst of floral hops with citric notes.
Medium-bodied and packing a hop punch, this beer still retains a little sweetness and is very pleasing at it passes the tongue and goes down smooth. Pleasant aftertaste; the fact that this stuff is in a can and cheap is amazing - I couldn't session b/c of the high ABV (I must note that they hid it well). This is a graet DIPA.

Photo of Rootdog316
4.42/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very cloudy, orangey, gold with a thick, soft white head. The aroma is very hoppy but also intensely fruity. Citrus and hops combined with a fruity malt profile. The flavor follows the aroma - lots of soft fruit, strong malts, balanced well by a ton of floral and fruity hops. The balance is impeccable. The finish is both very bitter from hops but also very fruity and sweet with malts. The after-taste is very hoppy - but not bitter. The mouthfeel is very full bodied, but nice on the tongue - not syrupy. Overall - amazing!

Photo of TheTrevor
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a cloudy copper color with single finger head that dissipated after a while. The smell is a big surge of citrus and piney hops with some maltiness. The taste starts off with some citrusy hops that give way to some caramel maltiness that is cut by some piney and floral hops. The mouthfeel is thick with fine carbonation and a little bit of warmth from the alcohol. I'd consider this beer very drinkable considering how much hoppiness there is.

Photo of JasonA
4.77/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a mild cloudy rich amber. Solid 2+ fingers of thick off-white/bach head. Lots of lacing, lots of retention. Awesome pour from a can.

Smells sticky rich and powerful hops. Powerfull hops. Yum. Boy am I close to giving a 5 here

Initial malt, hops, sweet, killer hop finish. Wow, the taste here is amazing. The malty start, right into rish hops, maybe citrus middle, and simply delcious finish.

Perfectly balanced. This is probably the best IPA I have ever had.

I have nothing to say bad about this brew. Absolutely nothing. Give me more.

Photo of paco1029384756
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a somewhat dark brown orange color with one finger head and a creamy ring of lacing.

Scent of piny hops, citrus and caramel malts. Simple and sweet, very good.

Taste of bitter piny hops, caramel malts, oats and a hint of citrus.

Mouthfeel is clean and sharp, but a tad too heavy for the style, good nonetheless.

Photo of bkilpatr
4.32/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz can into a Chimay glass. 10/01/08.

Pours a copper-amber color with about a finger of beige head. The head slowly dropped to a thin layer. Aroma is strong with sweet caramel malt, and both citrusy and piny hops.

Taste starts with a bunch of sweet caramel malt and a touch of honey. That is followed by very nice floral, citrusy, and piny hop flavors. Nicely hopped. The hop taste has a nice bitterness that is not too harsh or overpowering. Pretty well balanced.

The feel on this beer is great. It's full bodied, slick and creamy. The carbonation is a bit low but that helps keep it smooth without being flat. A slight aftertaste doesn't last long. Drinkability is pretty good. The alcohol is pretty well hidden and it's not too bitter.

Overall, a very good DIPA. It's not as bitter as other beers of the style, which I like. Makes this one much more drinkable to me. Each sip leaves me wanting to take another.

Photo of bheilman
4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice amber glow with a pleasant head. I don't know Gordon Knight, but I do know Gordon McCrary and he'd be happy with this beer too. Not overly hoppish and almost tasting more of a regular IPA compared to an imperial because it is so smooth, almost creamy. Doesn't have the hops bite I was thinking but I always feel like the hops gets toned down once it hits high alcohol. One of the best drinks I've had in a while. I've been very happy with Oskar.

Photo of tpd975
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a beautiful copper hue with a nice sticky head.

S: Wow nice hop profile. Lots of bitter citrus and sweet pine. Hints of caramel malt poke thru as well.

T: Taste is married to the nose. Overloaded on hops without being too bitter. Bold citrus up front, but sweet pine tones things down a bit. Add in some nice toasted and citrus malt and you have a very drinkable IPA.

M: Medium to full bodied, rather full for the style. Good carbonation.

D: Rather drinkable. I like this one more and more everytime I taste it.

Photo of Dmann
3.95/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very interesting twist on the DIPA style. The beer poured a nice dark amber color with great head and lace on the glass. The smell threw me off at first with much malt sweetness and slight hops in the background. The flavor pretty much followed suit with a large dose of caramel sweetness up front, then a slight shot of hops in the middle followed by a sweet aftertaste that left you wanting more. I can't say this is one of my top DIPA's but it is quite a unique beer and one to bridge the gap for malt lovers into the IPA world.

Photo of brdc
4.62/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Small can, poured into a tulip. Courtesy of stoutsnipas.

Dark golden, amber highlights, with a good off-white head, good retention for the ABV.
I read that this one has 85 IBU's; hard to believe. Starting from the aroma, this is one well-balanced brew; loads of caramel, cookie and even a faint hint of chocolate play against a resinous, oily hopload with piney and grassy notes, along with the usual fruitiness. Soft on the palate, very easy to drink.
This is my kind of IPA, and comes in a can!

Photo of beveritt
3.8/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz can into an Imperial pint glass. The label explains that this is named after Gordon Knight, the now deceased brewer. Thanks to mhewes for setting me up with this and some other Oskar Blues.

Appearance: Pours with a massive four fingers of light tan head. This settles slowly, leaving behind tremendous sticky lacing. The beer itself is amber with a hint of red and has a slight chill haze.

Smell: Incredibly hoppy. I have used term fresh hops to describe things before, but no beer to date has ever been this massive in the aroma department.

Taste: Sweet malt with a tannic, tea-like flavor. Hops are not as prevalent in the taste as in the aroma, in fact after an initial little burst of bitterness, there is very little in the finish. Alcohol is hidden well, although not all that high.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation level is average. Body is okay, maybe a little thin, especially for a brew of this stature.

Drinkability: Incredible looks and smell, but the hop flavor was lower than expected for a beer called a DIPA. While smooth, malty, and nice to drink, I am not sure it is tops with respect to the style.

Photo of Yesac
4.6/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Cloudy orange/copper with a nice off white head that stays throughout the glass.

S - Strong fresh hop smell with hints of malt

T - Along with the smell the hops have a crisp sweet fresh taste with a slight malt finish.

M - Medium bodied, slightly sticky palate

D - What 8.7%? Can't taste it! This is highly drinkable and the taste and mouthfeel is perfect.

Tthis is an awesome imperial IPA. It's got everything, the look taste and drinkability and the 8.7% gives it balls.

Photo of Packforever1976
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this in the Pre-football season BIF from paulthebeerguru. I've had Dale's before, but have been wanting to try Gordon. On we go..
Pours a nice moderately dark amber with a nice light tan, and thick 2-finger head. Man that head sticks around, nice!
Smells nice and sweet, especially for a DIPA. I pick up some slight hop aroma, but overall a nice sweet malty smell.
Tastes great. Those sweet malts hit first, then as it goes down the hops kick in nicely. Very nice balance in there, I like it.
Very good mouthfeel, just the right amount of thickness, not too much. Leaves a very pleasant aftertaste.
I could easily drink 3-4 of these in a session, it's very drinkable. Oskar Blues makes some damn tasty brew, and I'm glad to finally have been able to get my hands on some Gordon.

Photo of DoubleJ
2.83/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I've had beer from the can before, but not craft beer. Gordon will change that tonight. On to the beer:

The body is clean...sizeable one-inch thick creamy head on top this amber colored brew. The aroma is big on sharp piney hops, a touch of tropical fruit. After tha smell and look, I could have confused this with Pine Sol, though I won't need to call the poison control center as I cosume this beer. Surprisngly light body with a somewhat watery and flat feel and little carbonation. It's not even that gooey. What's weirder is I don't feel the high alcohol in this brew considering the taste seems muted. Faded hops are dominant in the taste. There is some bitter green vegetable flavor, kind of like chopped celery crossed with pine. Finish is a bit unusual.

This can was a dud for what I was expecting. A muted Double IPA is not very exciting to drink. Next...

Photo of hops4me
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - amber reddish. slightly off white head. Leaves a little lacing on the glass.

S - citrus, pine, honey, grapes, toasted grain

T - caramel sweetness with some honey grainy flavor. Of course the hops are there with the standard citrus flavor. Maybe a little floral flavor as well.

M - sticky mouthfeel with medium to heavy body.

D - excellent beer. Will definitly buy again. Due to the style I don't think many of these in a row is called for.

Photo of albern
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a really nice DIPA. I typically am not enamored with the style because I find them to be loaded with bittering hops, too syrupy, too throaty alcohol, and just too over the top; what I call a "forced beer" in that the brewer is just trying too hard to make the beer substantial. Often DIPAs just groan under the weight of expectations.

Gordon's DIPA is really none of the above, to its credit, and what a relief. The beer is full bodied, no doubt, and you will get a goodly dose of a high ABV, but overall the beer is creamy, thick, mellow, and toned down compared to most others of the style. The beer pours a clear dark amber color with a nice creamy head, retention, and lacing. The aroma is very typically DIPA, lots of estery hop notes, oily hop residuals, lots of sweet malts, caramels, and some very bready smells as well. The aroma is first rate, and not too over the top. The taste is just a creamy delight. It is a thick, syrupy, full bodied beer, but it just stays well inside of the line of being forced to do more than it should. This one is a real winner, well worth seeking out. L'Chaim.

Photo of seanpachefddfa
3.92/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - poured a nice deep amber color with a thin off white head that faded pretty fast. Left a good lacing

Smell - a Fantastic aroma of grapefruit zest and pine, the grapefruit really jumps out in this one. A little floral and maybe a little caramel in this one.

Tasted - the tastes is very similar to the nose. lots of citrus/ grapefruit with a slight touch of caramel. I was kind of hoping for a bigger bite from the hops but not bad.

Mouth feel - Medium body with nice gentle carbonation.

Drink ability - This is a very solid imperial ipa. It makes my top 10 ipa list. I will enjoy this one again.

Photo of wspscott
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz can in sam adam's glass

My 100th review

A: dark reddish amber color, thick 1 finger head. It looks viscous/sticky as it pours
S: hints of fruit sweetness, very odd for the style, doesn't have the overwhelming hops nose I expect for a double IPA. The fruity nose still dominates the hops as it warms.
T: Definitely bitter hops, doesn't seem like the traditional american hops (i.e the C's). Almost tastes like a old ale, lots of caramel and dried fruit mixed in with the hops. As it warms up, the hops become a little more apparent and a little more "american". The warmer it gets, the more it starts to "rape" your tongue.
M: This is a big beer. Rich, mouth-filling, tongue-coating, but nice level of attenuation, doesn't feel thick/syrupy.
D: Damn, this is a great beer. I love the 1/2 old ale and 1/2 double IPA. This would be ideal on a summer camping trip, I think I would be in heaven in front of a campfire with a couple of these. I know what I want for xmas :)

I was close to giving 5's for T,M,D probably could go either way, this is one of the best beers I have had this year.

Please distribute this in KY. Highly recommended.

Photo of trbergman
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Poured aggressively into a Gulden Draak tulip. Deep ruby color with tall, off-white head. The head falls to about a half inch, then recedes; minimal lacing

Smell - Fantastic! Inviting with lots of hop aroma: citrus and a hint of pineapple.

Taste - My first impression is "hop bomb," but as it warms the malty backbone becomes more apparent. Chewy, with alcohol present but not overbearing. Hops taste of grapefruit; slightly herbal.

Mouthfeel - Pleasant tingle from carbonation and hop bitterness. Malts and residual sugars give it a rich, full body.

Drinkability -- Very good for style, but I feel a buzz rather quickly. I wouldn't want more than one in a night, but it's definitely a beer I'd like to have on hand.

Photo of hellomcfly
3.93/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from can into a tulip glass

Poures a nice warm amber color with a three finger or so, fluffy off-white head. Leaves good lacing.

S - Smells strongly of grapefruit with a hint of pine. Also some bready and caramel malt smells become stronger as beer warms.

T - This beer still tastes pretty great but doesn't have the ultra hop punch I was expecting. Instead it is very balanced. Good hop flavor but not all that bitter. Nice caramel malt taste. I'm not sure if my can is old or not but other reviews have said this was pretty balanced and not over the top bitter.

M - Pretty thin for a big beer. Just enough carbonation. Very smooth though.

D - Pretty drinkable for a DIPA. I could have a couple.

Photo of unionturf
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found a 4 pack on a recent trip to Georgia. Before Dale's I have NEVER tasted a good beer from a can so seeing this is a DPA I was glad to find it. On the side it says "Big, red, Sticky"...all three are correct.

Poured into pint glass with huge and lingering sea foam head and a clear dark red appearance. Smell is citrus/pine/floral and I like! Taste matches the smell but is well balanced, very hoppy and a little oily but for the hophead this is yummy!

I could have a few of these and what a great option for the beach or races versus the other canned options??? Good beer can be put in a can!!!

Photo of dirtylou
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz can, $2.99 at Riley's which is apparently a very fair price for this one - consumed during cowgirls-browns

appearance: poured into my bells tulip, big glowing amber body with a sticky, coating beige head and light retention...certainly has the appearance of a strong DIPA

smell: very floral nose, dripping pine hops, bitter grapefruit, smooth caramel malt

taste: obviously the best (only?) DIPA from a can - Gordon is well balanced with a smooth and creamy caramel heart and dripping resinous pine hops and notes of bitter citrus...a nice all around DIPA described well on the can by "big.red.sticky"

mouthfeel: smooth medium body, sticky hops, nice lingering bitterness

drinkability: good

Photo of malty
3.55/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a glowing orangey crimson with a thick, dense 1" light khaki head. A little bit of visible uprising carbonation.

The scents are: butter crème frosting, warm toffee glazed almonds, damp pine cones, fruit cocktail in heavy syrup, sweet & toasted pale malts - not bad.

The resiny hops are actually every bit evenly rivaled by a chunky and earthy malt surge that balances-out this beast of an ale. Imagine Judas Priest on stage left and Iron Maiden on stage right playing balls out at the same time, and that's what you get from this beer. There's a whole lotta love and destruction happening every time I take a quaff, with a little hippy essence (a actually taste a little bit of a Cannabis essence, no sh_t!) going on. There's a little alcohol burn way in the back of the finish.

Mouthfeel is a little watery for such a big beer. The carbonation is ultra fine but doesn't stick around long at all. A bitter, warm and dry finish lingers with some spicy hops to finish things off.

Drinkability is good. This one's a little bit loose and clunky for my liking though.

Overall a grand experience I'm glad I participated in. Its definitely original and ballsy, but not quite my bag (heh heh heh). I'd throw a few in a cooler though, just to surprise some unsuspecting beer lurkers. I respect it, but just don't appreciate it all that much.

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G'Knight Imperial Red Ale from Oskar Blues Grill & Brew
92 out of 100 based on 3,525 ratings.