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Sockeye Red IPA - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sockeye Red IPASockeye Red IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

372 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 372
Reviews: 213
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 10.85%
Wants: 25
Gots: 26 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed in the bold spirit of Alaska, Sockeye Red IPA is a finely crafted Pacific Northwest-style India Pale Ale with a real bite. Ample pale two-row malt creates a fresh, firm body while specialty malts impart a spawning red hue. The predominant character of this fiesty catch comes from outlandish portions of Centennial, Cascade and Simcoe hops, giving this beer tremendous citrus and floral aroma and flavor.

Determined and bitter but amazingly balanced, Sockeye Red IPA is gnarly enough to take you hook, line and sinker. Forget about a bigger rig; grab a bigger glass.

70 IBU

(Beer added by: purplehops on 02-21-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 372 | Reviews: 213 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of strictlyrocks
5/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of Earth's most exceptional products. Sockeye Red IPA tastes like Alaska. It's B+ average rating is akin to "There Will Be Blood" averaging an 8.2 on the IMDB - an indictment of the system. Of course there has to be some leverage for personal preference, but any rating that dips beneath an 'A' means they almost certainly didn't understand it.

strictlyrocks, Jan 03, 2011
Photo of lakersfan16
5/5  rDev +32.3%

lakersfan16, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of fbxdan
4.8/5  rDev +27%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

By far the finest IPA I have tasted. I am still a newbie to this site but this IPA delivers. Extremely hoppy, citrus taste with hints of grapfruit and some spices. This is Midnight sun's finest beer by far and the best beer to come from my home state (which is saying quite alot).

fbxdan, Aug 29, 2008
Photo of MrNuggets
4.7/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep colour, dark for an ipa. Massive head, towering, huge, fluffy full boardering on tan. Smells of hops, strong citrus charactor. Sweetness is crushed by the power of the hops. Hint of carmel starts me off. Hops steal the show for sure. Grassy, bitter finish. I'm happy to have finally tried a midnight sun brew and hope to get more soon.

Got a fresher bottle. Had to update the scores.

MrNuggets, Aug 17, 2004
Photo of RBorsato
4.58/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hmmm, no mention of Humpy's on the label ... oh, well.

Bronze-ish amber with a full creamy tan head, decent carbonation, and very nice clumpy lace. Moderate citrus hop aroma - very nice - not overblown like many IPA's. Nice balanced malt-hop flavor and a bit of fruitiness. Medium-full (leans full) bodied, creamy, and smooth with a nicely balanced finish. Not really bitter at all considering IBU levels of over 70 !!!

Would certainly buy again ...

Label states: "Centennial and Cascade hops"

Per M.S.B.Co. website: 70+ IBUs.
Gold Medal 2000 Alpha King Challenge Denver Colorado.
Bronze Medal 1999 Alpha King Challenge Denver Colorado.
Silver Medal 1999 Great Alaskan Beer Festival, Anchorage, Alaska.

Bottled: 2nd Wk. Nov (2003)
Tasted: 03/23/04

($4.49 / 22 oz. bottle)

RBorsato, Mar 24, 2004
Photo of ralree
4.58/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Brown, white head, nice lacing.

S: More grapefruit than the Melt Down. Lots of hops.

T: Lots of yeast, lots of Northwest hops, a little grapefruit kick. Not sweet, but good.

M: Very dry, non-astringent, good carbonation.

D: Very drinkable. Goes down easy.

ralree, Aug 13, 2009
Photo of merlin48
4.53/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22 oz bottle that I purchased because I liked the label. Didn't know that I had my first Alaskan beer until I read the label a few minutes ago. This pours a clear, topaz red, with a thick, ivory head that retains well before fading into islands of thick lace.
The nose is exceptional, with notes of sweet fruit and caramel/toffee morphing into grapefruit, oranges, and apricots, bouncing off a nice caramel malt sweetness. The piney aroma of the Cascades hops lurks in the background.
Mouthfeel is actively carbonated, and features a pleasantly mild hops bite.
The taste begins with a buttery malt sweetness, that is quickly overtaken by the fruity, hops profile. This has a lot of IBU's, but the Cascades and Centennial hops have a lot of malt to deal with, so the end result is a very delicate balance of extreme hopping and solid malt presence. This is, simply, an extraordinary IPA, with no faults that I can discern. The taste resembles the aroma, with all kinds of citrus fruits, as well as apricots and apples, bouncing around with the caramel and butterscotch maltiness. The Cascades hops make their presence known with a touch of spruce pine, but this Sockeye remains extremely well balanced to the very end. Absolutely delicious!
To say that this is an auspicious introduction to Alaskan breweries is a wild understatement. This is one extraordinary brew!

merlin48, Mar 22, 2004
Photo of Elemental
4.5/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The first thing that is noticable is the overwhelming amount of head. It pours strong and foams very easily. But disregarding the head issue this is a wonderful beer. Very nice hoppy smell with a copperish amber color. A litIe dark for an IPA but that was evident from the name as a red IPA. Good flavor from the first sip to the last. A nice amount of bitterness that isn't overwhelming with a hint of citrus taste.
All around a great beer. I'll have to buy some more.

Elemental, Mar 22, 2003
Photo of MAUEX_MFA
4.5/5  rDev +19%

MAUEX_MFA, Aug 28, 2013
Photo of whartontallboy
4.5/5  rDev +19%

whartontallboy, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of
4.5/5  rDev +19%

You rated this beer. Add a review.

, Mar 07, 2014
Photo of chuckgfk
4.5/5  rDev +19%

chuckgfk, Jan 10, 2012
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.5/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brilliant bronze (equal parts red, orange and amber) that is as clear as the proverbial bell. The intensely pitting, creamystiff, sand-colored head is a tacky lace maker with speckled lace near the top of the glass becoming thick, spackle-like rings farther down. The melted mesa of cream occupying the center of the glass awaits disruption by my eager lips. But first, the nose...

... which is an intensely hoppy explosion of candied orange and grapefruit zest. It's hard to go wrong with Cascade and Centennial. There isn't a whole lot in the aroma except hops, but then what else does a hophead need? That mesa is beginning to flag so I might as well hasten its destruction.

As expected, Humpy's is firmly hoppy and firmly bitter, but isn't anything that I can't handle. It's definitely in the upper reaches of the IPA spectrum and even knocks on the DIPA door. Still though, there's plenty of sweet, almost smoky caramel malt that is attempting to hold the line against the bitter grapefruit, bitter orange and Northwoods spruce.

The malt just does manage to take the bright edge off the hops, which is another reason why The Humpster is almost as much the bigger style as the stated one. 'DIPA light' might fit, but I'm reluctant to use the word light in a beer that's this full of itself, this big, this unrelentingly bitter. Drinkability is directly proportional to the drinker's hop tolerance. Although it's a steady sipper, occasional glugs are rewarding as well. The medium-full body has a semi-viscous quality that pleases the mouth.

What is there left to say? Humpy's Sockeye Red is a DIPA-lovers IPA. It's a big, full-throttle beer from an expansive, wide open, wild state. Check your manners at the door, crack the cap and prepare for a rough-and-tumble hop party.

BuckeyeNation, Oct 26, 2004
Photo of Kuaff
4.48/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Alright... I drink this one all the time, so it's time for a review. Poured from a can into a tulip glass, probably around 45-50 degrees.

Sockeye Red's appearance is very pleasing, and appropriate for the beer's name as well. It's got an off-white, three finger head that sits on a deep, dark red body which really DOES remind me of a spawning sockeye salmon (aka "red salmon").

The aroma gives off grapefruit more than anything else. Glorious grapefruit. But there is also a bit of grass and something that smells like flowers. Wonderful.

The grapefruit is dominant in the taste too. Hops are coming through, and there's something else going on here that I can't describe very well... I kind of just want to call it maltiness... whatever it is, it's GOOD. It's also got a great bitter aftertaste.

Nothing about the mouthfeel really pops out at me, but sometimes that's a welcome thing. This isn't a DOUBLE IPA, after all. The feel is unobtrusive.

This is a rock solid IPA that's never disappointed me. A sockeye that's worth fishing for.

Kuaff, Jun 01, 2013
Photo of cswhitehorse
4.47/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Sockeye Red poured a lovely copper color and had a 2 finger foam head with sudsy lacing that was relentless. It was a great looking beer and was happy to take it down.

The aroma to me was one of the best smelling IPA's I have had. The Cascade hops gave some strong and soothing wafts to the nose. It was smooth and harsh in the same time. The hops were aggressive which I usually like and it had a nice malt backdrop. In the mouth it was highly carbonated with the IBU attacking every pore of the mouth. I found it be another excellent brew from the folks in Anchorage.

cswhitehorse, Sep 02, 2008
Photo of Rutager
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Deep amber with 1 finger off white head and some nice lacing.

Smell. Citrus fruit, some bready malt. Some ...under-ripe bananna?

Taste. Good hop flavour and just enough bitterness. Citrus fruit and a little pine tree sap. Some light malt to balance, but not take away from the predominant hoppy goodness. Very little sweetness and it works great. Good stuff.

Mouthfeel. Medium carbonation and just a little thin.

Drinkability. A great drinker. Refreshing and crisp.

Rutager, Jan 28, 2011
Photo of GClarkage
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11/01/05- Purchased at John's Marketplace in Portland, OR.

Presentation- 22oz bottle with a bottled on dating strip on the side of the label. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Amber colored pour with a gigantinormous head. Possibly the largest I have seen to date. I shared this beer and it took about 10 minutes to get 11 oz in each of our Duvel glasses. Huge large bubbles that don't go away unless you physically eat them. The lacing is very nice as well.

Smell- Lots of malt and lots of hops. Terrific smelling brew. Caramel with a grapefruit backing.

Taste- Very mindful of the Lagunitas Imperial Red and the Bear Republic Red Rocket Ale (both outstanding brews as well). Tons of sugared caramel blends nicely with pine resin and grapefruit flavored hops.

Mouthfeel- Suprisingly smooth considering the fairly high carbonation.

Drinkability- Definitely recommended. Great red ale/IPA hybrid.

GClarkage, Nov 02, 2005
Photo of jayaubrey
4.44/5  rDev +17.5%

jayaubrey, Oct 29, 2014
Photo of Boilermaker88
4.4/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presented in a 22oz. bomber with notches in the side of the label indicating it was brewed in the first week of March (2003, I'm guessing). On opening, I experienced a bit of foaming and got an explosive reaction when it hit the pint glass. Crap! Vanilla-colored foam erupted up the glass and I quickly fought to get things back under control. Minutes passed, and I waited for the head to settle. More time passed. Finally, I slurped down some of that eternal foam and oh so gently poured more into the glass.
Sockeye Red IPA had a lightly hazed orange hue and that lumpy off-white head that never, ever went away and left clumps of sticky lace behind. Also noted was a lot of carbonation trails constantly stoking the head.
The smell was quite sweet and malty with strong citrus and floral hops notes. Real surprising, the amount of malty sweetness in the nose. Also surprising that it could push its way through the barrage of hops so evident in the nose. The taste set things straight as the malt character of this IPA took on a decidedly subordinate role to the array of hops. There was a certain sweetness up front but it was quickly dispatched by the flavors of citrus peels and resinous pine. The finish left a tongue and throat-searing bitterness fueled by hops oils that coated the mouth in hops goodness. The feel was medium-bodied, lively due to the carbonation, and finished quite dry.
Aside from the issues with the out-of-control foaming, this was a pleasing IPA and a nice intro to the brews made by the folks at Midnight Sun Brewing. I like it, I like it.

Boilermaker88, Jan 28, 2004
Photo of RJLarse
4.4/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought a bomber of Sockeye Red IPA in a grocery store. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a garnet and copper color and is clear. A rich and thick 2-tone beige and off-white head caps the beer and leaves curtains of lace on the glass.

Smell is decidedly malty, with a sweet caramel fragrance. None of the pine scent one comes to expect from the style.

Taste is malty, with some dominant sweet caramel flavors, a litle smokey presence, and a minty after taste which is kind of interesting.

Mouthfeel is smooth, full-bodied and mildly carbonated. A bit cloying, but not in a bad way.

A very drinkable IPA, and at 5.7% ABV would ber very sessionable. A little over priced at $5.49 for the 22 oz bottle, but a very good northwest IPA.

Cheers to Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

RJLarse, Aug 10, 2009
Photo of megahurts4
4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Midnight Sun Sockeye Red IPA

Appearance: reddish brown, small head, and good lacing.

Smell: delicious spicy hops.

Taste: nice wet hops and a faintly malty, flowery finish.

Mouthfeel: light and smooth.

Overall:
This has a fantastic aroma, but the actual brew is lightly flavored, while not being watery. It is easily drank and will make an excellent session brew.

megahurts4, Aug 05, 2011
Photo of popery
4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle, home. Very good IPA. The beer is a bright reddish amber, translucent, with a big, creamy off-white head. The aroma is intensely hoppy with a nice caramel malt backbone. I'm a sucker for hops, particularly Simcoe, and this beer has gads of them. It's a pretty even mix of normal American hop notes: grapefruit rind, floral, pine/spruce. There's a relatively big malt presence, but the beer seems relatively dry. It's a bit hard to tell under the bushel of hops that dominate each sip, not that I mind. The feel is really the only thing that tips off the relatively low abv of this beer. It's not bad or anything, but the aroma and flavor wouldn't be amiss in a DIPA. I wish that the price was a bit lower, so I could drink this beer more often. Great.

popery, Feb 26, 2010
Photo of far333
4.28/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Hazy honey color with a big, fat, beige foamy head about an inch high. The head hangs out for a long while. Sweet hop smell with hints of pear and cotton candy. Flavor is a burst of hop flavor. It's powerful, but not overpowering. Leaves the tongue tingling, and wanting more. Big flowery hops and some sweet malt, but that's about all I detect. It's very crisp and clean, with a lingering hop bitter. Chunky lacing all the way down the glass. Excellent beer.

far333, Sep 14, 2003
Photo of MADhombrewer
4.28/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served too cold in what appears to be a 14 oz glass. Had this at a wine bar so...

Appearance- Dark cooper, reddish color. Small, off white head. Little lacing. 3/5

Smell- Pine with a nice malt backbone. The hops still shine bright, though. 4/5

Taste- Big pineiness through out. Malt in the middle but doesn't take away from the hop character. Some sweetness in the end. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel- Very good mouthfeel. Medium. 4/5

Overall - I have always like reds because of the high hop character. This one does not disappoint. 4.5/5

MADhombrewer, Oct 30, 2011
Photo of GJ40
4.28/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled in my prized Double Mountain tulip pint glass from a 22oz bottle purchased at Pike Street Beer & Wine in Seattle. The label said it was bottled in the first week of April so it was nice and fresh.

A - Amber with a red tinge and very good clarity. Moderate tan head.

S - Piney, citrusy and floral hops with a slightly nutty malt presence.

T - A complex mix of piney hops, citrusy bitterness, pineapple, semi-sweet malt and butter. I really enjoyed this one.

M - A moderate to high carbonation (could have used a little less) and a moderate consistency.

D - A very interesting and enjoyable beer. I'm sorry I only brought one back with me.

GJ40, May 10, 2009
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Sockeye Red IPA from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 372 ratings.