Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Second Fiddle - Fiddlehead Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Second FiddleSecond Fiddle

Educational use only; do not reuse.

154 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 154
Hads: 1,446
Avg: 4.43
pDev: 23.48%
Wants: 440
Gots: 333 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Fiddlehead Brewing Company
Vermont, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA | 8.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Gatch on 07-22-2013

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 154 | Hads: 1,446
Photo of NolaHopHead
4.49/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16 oz can. Opaque orange color with finger white head, fades slowly leaving soapy lace. Big juicy and piney hop aroma. The taste of this brew is a cross between juicy citrus and resiny pine hops. The pine wins out with lots of dank bitterness through the sip and dry finish. Just enough caramel malt backbone. Medium, very soft mouthfeel. This is a delish bitter IPA.

 374 characters

Photo of HopfordBeerham
4.9/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Another one of my favorites from Vermont! Definitely on my top 10 beer list. It has amazing bitter hop flavors with a subtle malt background. Drinkable? YES! Wish I could get my hands on this stuff more often. Thinking about moving to Vermont, just so I can have access to beers like this on a consistent basis. Salud!!

 319 characters

Photo of SuperChugLosAngeles
4.38/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I have drunk this side by side with Heady Topper, Pliny Elder, and Sip of Sunshine and this brew is a bit more bitter with hints of grapefruit. I really liked this beer, but several beers ahead of it on my top list. I'll drink it.

 230 characters

Photo of KYGunner
4.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a can 9 days old. This is an IPA that seems to trend more to a huge malt base as the hops a a bit tempered. I get some dankness, chive, herbal notes, orange creme and tangerines. Mostly the deep caramel, honey, grain malt base shines through.

 254 characters

Photo of ThorSigurdsson
3.59/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very nice brew for those who enjoy a dank piney resinous brew with hints of ctrus and tropical fruit. Poured dark orangey, nice head, nice lacing down the glass as I sipped this tasty brew. Usually I dont really like the dank and piney stuff, but this had just enough citrus flavor to balance it out. Overall better than your average East Coast IPA.

 354 characters

Photo of Biggtriksta
4.45/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had this one up at the brewery - a little place off the side of a highway in VT that is combined with a great pizza place. It was the perfect pizza beer. Hoppy and semi-dank with noticeable compliments from the maltiness of the beer. Wish that it had further distribution.

 272 characters

Photo of TimG_0913
4.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Not sure if anything smells better than a fresh ipa or dipa. But anyway pours a dark orange. Smells very piny and tropical. Good mouthfeel, clean and fresh. No can date. But I'm pretty sure this is from the 12/31/15 canning. 4.25/5

 232 characters

Photo of bol3by
4.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Cracked open a few of the 12/31/15 can release..


Poured darker than expected since I first had it out of the can.. Dark Gold, slight haze. Smell subtle citrus and woody aroma

For an 8.2% beer, you barely taste any alcohol and better yet has amazing mouthfeel. Hugs your entire mouth without being overly assertive. Initial pine and citrus grapefruit notes upfront with a creamy finish in the back, makes this DIPA super friendly and drinkable.

Everyone needs to try this awesome East Coast DIPA!

 526 characters

Photo of Hopislovehopislife
4.85/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Probably my favorite canned dipa. Love this beer, especially with a great slice of pizza. Lots of pine and citrus, much darker appearance than you would expect for a dipa.good amount of Dank piney notes will still being citrus and orange pith. Very crisp and easy drinking beer.

 278 characters

Photo of Dopen993
4.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Birthday beer for me. 10/09/15. Into tulip. Your trip is short.

L. Bright copper orange with lots of haze.
S. Lots of tropical fruit. Mangos and pears. Not much pine or grapefruit.
T. More pine and grapefruit than on the nose. A bit of wetness on the finish and malt.
F. Nice carbonation and medium mouthfeel.

 314 characters

Photo of Hyptochrons
4.64/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

hazy orange in color. couple fingers of head, leaves some lacing. drinking it the day after it was canned so im especially pumped on this one!

nose on this is really dank - zesty citrus and resinous hops predominate, getting huge orange and grapefruit scents as well as pineapple and grassy notes... also something on the sweeter side, creating a nice tropical scent. the second you crack this beer your gonna be impressed and eager.

taste begins with citrus that is complimented by a subtle sweetness. finishes with a beautiful spicy bitterness on the tongue. very drinkable and balanced.

overall I thought this was a really great beer and I'm glad I got a chance to try it right after it was canned as both taste and smell seemed extremely fresh. really pleased that I got a case of this, was definitely worth seeking out!

 830 characters

Photo of jvillefan
4.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Review #233

This is a good beer but a little over hyped. There is a great aroma coming off this beer but the flavor does not live up to the nose. (My beer was canned 15 days before I drank it). I don't think this beer lives up to the hoppy beers coming out of Tree House, Other Half, Trillium, or the big three Vermont breweries but it is a solid beer. Not worth actively seeking out but well worth drinking if you come across it.

 432 characters

Photo of CraftEyeDoc
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great VT DIPA!
Drank from the can. Nice tropical noise with a taste that follows. Very little sweetness much like all the other VT DIPA/IPAs. Subtle malt character that lets the hops shine. Very tasty. Down the can very quickly and went for another. Even the burps taste great! Will def seek out and try and get more of.

 335 characters

Photo of Tonyjenlasc
4.64/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look - A gorgeous golden honey color. New England haze. Looks great in the glass.
Smell - Pineapple, grapefruit, zesty citrus, dank, resinous
Taste - Pithy grapefruit, citrus, pine, dank, grassy, some pineapple, slight alcohol bite on the back end

Overall - Getting a New England meets West Coast vibe with this one. Tons of pithy grapefruit/piney/dank notes alongside some tropical notes. A very tasty DIPA.

 411 characters

Photo of jcflorian
4.34/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My first taste of the much hyped second fiddle.
Look- golden orange
Smell-pine up front, citrus in the background
Taste- pine, followed by citrus fading into dry finish.
grassy, vegetal after taste
Feel- creamy, light to medium light body
Overall- very good, solid beer but did blow me away.

 301 characters

Photo of Gajo74
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a beautiful hazy golden orange color with a big foam head and frothy sticky lace that displays excellent retention.
The orange and grapefruit zest hits you in the nose immediately. This is followed by lots of tropical fruit.
The taste is very juicy; grapefruit, mango, passion fruit and pear. It is tangy and sweet on the backend. As the drink progresses further, the more piny hops tones make themselves known in a way that is assertive but not overpowering. As this happens, the finish becomes more bitter and dry, yet, the overall fruitiness is not lost.
The body is medium to light. It is scary how easy to drink this is. The carbonation is soft but tingly. The overall balance is amazing.
This is truly one of the greats! You can only find it in Vermont, which is what I brought home on a recent trip. It is a true testament to the quality of this brew that it can undoubtedly hold its own against other Vermont brews such as Heady Topper and Sip of Sunshine.

 972 characters

Photo of Stevem68
4.31/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy orangy Amber color. Has a funky citrus hop aroma. Flavor is nice. Notes of tropical fruit, citrus and a funky hop finish. Leaves a slight bitter citrus aftertaste. Overall bet nice.

 194 characters

Photo of RABouffard
4.69/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bready with a slight titanium and math algorithm, swedish fish, and other fish too. Mango and tropical fruit notes, and a treble clef. Come on, what is wrong with you people reviewing this beer. It is an awesome double IPA, what does a "wet plant stem" taste like? Dank???? Are you beer advocate reviewers going to Vermont and smoking weed???? Anything tastes great if you've been smoking weed. Cheetos and vanilla ice cream notes....

 441 characters

Photo of ragnar3
4.43/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16 oz can poured into a snifter. Nice balance of pine and citrus flavors and the excellent, creamy mouthfeel you would expect from a Vermont DIPA. Worth seeking out!

 165 characters

Photo of StJamesGate
4.17/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dark orange with crusty off white, clingy head. 4.25
Lots of mango with soap, coriander, flowers and grapefruit rind.4
Apricot and orange Swedish fish then mango, resin, and dank. 4.25
Sugared grapefruit rind end and lingering herbal bitterness.
Medium, sticky, oily. 4

Dank and syrupy to start with, but lightens with flecks of grapefruit. Real depth to the hops. Goes into that sugary-greasy thing I associate with Oregon. Sets the bar high. 4.25

 450 characters

Photo of Newbeergeek1
4.59/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Amazing. Just happened to luck out to a release when visiting the area. Heady Topper, Sip O Sunshine, and Second Fiddle all on the same trip. Ooooooo!

 154 characters

Photo of vfgccp
4.08/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Oct 2015 can, opened Nov 2015

A - Beautiful deep peach gold body. Bone-white head pours 2 fingers high with nice retention and lace.

S - Soft nose. Mango, pine, cilantro, and soft malt and a minerally backbone.

T - Nice, sharply bitter profile. Pine, wood, mineral water, bitter wet plant stems, and malty bread.

M - OK mouthfeel. Par medium body with par carbonation.

O - Not bad. Solid bitter character with a woodsy flavor profile.

 447 characters

Photo of PBRmeasap1980
4.13/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- Deep orange with fluffy white head
S- Grass, a bit of pine
T- Clean, grassy, and herbally
F- Medium
O- A bit in the vein of Heady, but a bit less aggressive on the grassiness

 177 characters

Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.38/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Traded for this with a friend a few weeks back up at the Cloverleaf. Never had this before and never heard of Fiddlehead either, as none of their offerings are currently available in this neck of the woods. After enjoying this beer immensely, I can say that I'm the better for having it and at some point, would make the trek to Vermont to get more of this on my way to Hill Farmstead and Lawson's Finest. Amazingly, this beer was on par with those brewed by those big boys!

Wonderful pour to this as the beer had a cloudy, off-gold appearance with a frothy head, and nice aroma. Lots of orange, tangerine, and earthy hops in it, as the citrus pith, rind, and tropical fruits came out in the taste. A slight candied sweetness set in later on as the hop oils were also present but not potent enough to overpower everything else. Nice balance here as the bitterness was not burning and faded away softly at the end, leaving some melon and ruby red grapefruit to blissfully linger into my next sip.

Sure, this was strong but I didn't taste most of the alcohol in this at all. It was noticeable at the end but not to the point where it detracted from the overall enjoyment of this. Although there wasn't a lot of lacing left on the side of my pint glass, this was thick enough to not just slide down and crisp enough to have a minty finish to it. On par with SingleCut's releases, this is further evidence that IIPA's don't have to be overpowering hop bombs to be highly rated. Fabulous stuff that deserves to be more widely distributed!

 1,535 characters

Photo of Back_in_the_Saddle
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Fiddlehead Brewing Company a newer company on the block here in Vermont seems to be pushing the brink on making outstanding AIPA's. Mediocrity doesn't show its face in this beer either.
Treating this as a DIPA, this was poured into a tulip for review.
The appearance was a soft hazy burnt orange color with a slight transparency allowing soft carbonation to be seen rising at a moderate pace to fill a one finger white foamy head. This head dissipates at a nice pace leaving some stringy lacing sliding into the beer.
The smell has some tangerine and grapefruit pulp becoming juicy and floral tones soften into light melon and then some pine with a touch of spice to blend nicely.
The taste was sweet to a light spice with a touch of dry earthiness. A dry clean sweet floral aftertaste leads into a refined sweet earthy finish.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a sly carbonation to hit underneath and allowing a slight oily slick feel sliding over my tongue.
Overall, in a world filled with fantastic DIPA's, Fiddlehead seems to have staked their claim near the top with this one.

 1,090 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Second Fiddle from Fiddlehead Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 154 ratings.