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Sockeye Red IPA - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sockeye Red IPASockeye Red IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

216 Reviews
THE BROS
84
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 216
Hads: 405
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 11.29%
Wants: 27
Gots: 40 | FT: 3
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:
Beer added by: purplehops on 02-21-2003

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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sockeye Red IPA Alström Bros
Reviews: 216 | Hads: 405
Photo of snpub540
3.33/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice dark copper with some red highlights to it. It was a clear hue with nice carbonation. Topped of by an eggshell colored head that left some nice sheets of lace.

Smell was piney and citrusy hops and a little nutty malt aroma. That was about it.

Flavor was a caramel and nutty malt flavor. Hops were resiny and pine making a nice balanced brew.

Mouthfeel was ok but not a lot of body going on. Its an ok beer but nothing to write home about. I'm just glad I found something from Midnight Sun in my neck of the woods. (530 characters)

Photo of SkinnyElvis
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to czoch for a bottle in a trade. This did not start well since the beer overflowed when taking off the cap. It took about five minutes to settle down. Fairly hoppy smell. Tastes primarily of Centennial hops and is tasty. Mouthfeel is a bit overcarbonated like the pour. This beer is drinkable but not special. Typical IPA but I was a little disappointed since my only other taste of Midnight Sun was the Arctic Devil barley wine which was great.

Cheers. (464 characters)

Photo of MADhombrewer
4.24/5  rDev +11.3%
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 (530 characters)

Photo of Rumrunner
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle. Great looking colorful monster salmon on the lable.

What a nice surprise.

Pours a burnt amber color. Great big fat frothy head with awesome lacing and retention. A beer beauty contest winner. The smell is strong and dense on the nose. Strong malts and floral hops. A citrus quality finishes the scent. Dry on the nose as well.

I found the flavors to be quite enjoyable as well. They do not bite as much as the scent though. It starts with a nice burnt malt flavor. Somewhat unusual for an IPA. The hops follow up for balance. A bit bitter but this IPA is milder than the usual California bitter style. Great for the IPA lover looking for a change of pace without switching to a different style. There is some fruit, a mild citrus grapefruit and orange flavors find there way to the taste buds. There is also a bit of alcohol on the tongue. It did not bother me. The only part of the flavors I did not like was the aftertaste. Too sweet and tangy. It is almost like a sweet and sour piece of candy.

Medium bodied in the mouth. A very nice feel of crispness and mild carbonation. A real easy drinker. I will look for more beers from this company. This one has certainly increased my curiosity. (1,218 characters)

Photo of JohnnyP3
3.87/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 fl oz bomber (from La Bodega) into a goblet. Bottled first week of June 2011. Pours a hazy burnt orange with some amber hues. Head is about two fingers that gradually resides to about one. Hard to see the carbonation due to the haze. Lacing is quite nice--good stickage and frothiness.

Wow, the nose is hop resin delight. Pine and citrus (grapefruit) and tropical fruit duke it out for the lead. So much so that it is hard to pick out any of the malt aromas. But, if you are an American IPA hophead, this smell is right on target for you--very floral and bitter.

The taste features hop bitterness front and center. Not much balance from the malt, although you do get some bready notes at the end. I am hit up front with a bitter bang that only reluctantly gives way towards the finish. There was quite a bit of citrus in the nose, and that is the flavor that plays out in this beer--in the form of grapefruit with a little added spice kick. I had to think about it a little bit, however. In other words, the grapefruit does not scream out grapefruit. Could be some pineapple too. Overall a nice IPA, but left me grasping for something a little more.

Mouthfeel is clean and crisp, perhaps a little on the light side for my preferences. Not a thick IPA by any means.

Overall, not bad. I enjoyed this hop-centric IPA from Midnight Sun. I see this as a good entry point for those looking to expand their IPA and hop horizons--a gateway into the land of no return! (1,467 characters)

Photo of Xul
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Translucent dark golden with major ruby highlights, capped by two fingers of frothy off-white head. Retention is moderate as the head settles slowly to a thin layer of foam.

S: Piney hops up front, followed by some slightly stale citrus - orange and pineapple mainly - backed by a big caramel base. It doesn't smell exceedingly fresh, but it just hit San Diego...confusing.

T: Tastes fresher than it smells, opening up with moderate pine presence and light citrus. Caramel base shines on the mid-palate before the hops return, building up to a rather strong, hoppy finish of pine, oranges and pineapple.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation, has a great creamy smoothness.

D: Rather refreshing and easy drinking...good IPA, but certainly wouldn't become an everyday choice for me. (801 characters)

Photo of Kuaff
4.48/5  rDev +17.6%
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. (1,044 characters)

Photo of avylover
3.99/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle. Pours out basically your clear golden color, like your average IPA with a small white head. Scent of apricots, peaches & tangerine hop aromas. The taste here is nearly all in the front end. Starts off with a bang..a a citric acid sort of bitter hop taste. Once the the tongue unties a bit, fruity flavors linger and give way to a rather bland taste, while the front of my tongue is still recovering from the initial bitterness. It's a nice sensation for the hophead, although I could use some malt here, which is very subdued and covered up by a cardboard type blandness in the finish. Mouthfeel is dry, no doubt from the bitterness. Drinkability is decent, but the bland aftertaste is bothersome. A good IPA nonetheless. (734 characters)

Photo of FFreak
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

My wife picked up a bomber of this for me to share with our friends. Poured into various glasses, it's a slightly hazy, reddish-copper color with a half-inch white head. Aroma is malty with a floral and citrus hop character. This is a fairly viscous full-bodied malty beer with adequate bitterness and some floral and citrus notes. Overall, a slight bit heavy for the style, but still a very enjoyable malty beverage. (417 characters)

Photo of stegmakk
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice copper and amber look with an off white head that left nice lacing...
Aroma Floral hops...p;ain and simple
Taste...Floral hoppy but mixed with a slight butter taste and a evening hint of caramel malt. Finished nice and dry. Great
Mouthfeel slick and good
Overall this is a great IPA...wish I could find it out here...thanks to weefishheads...MMMMMM (357 characters)

Photo of codysjb
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle
A: Pours a massive 4 finger head with a nice red amber color. The head looks like the foam from rapids and takes forever to dissipate.
S: hops, pine nice and aromatic. Reminds me of fall and the kind of beer for when the weather starts getting colder.
T: Alcohol and some syrup. Some milder hops along with a little bit of malty syrup taste.
M: Hops and just a nice pleasant all around flavor.
O: Interesting, more like a mix between the flavors of a strong ale and an ipa even at 5.7%. Really good. (513 characters)

Photo of erikm25
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a stemless snifter type glass. Burnt crimson with rusted ruby red highlights. Head is a pillowing pearl white. Great retention with sticky clumps of lacing all down the glass.

S: Citrus hops with caramel and raspberry undertones. Aromas are sharp and sweet. Peppermint candy and eucalyptus leaves. As this warms the aromas become more rounded.

T: Much like the nose there is a good combo of grapefruit bittering hops balanced with a caramel candy sweetness. Little pine and a little menthol coupled against a subtle wheat grain taste. Lemon citrus tang with a spiced finish.

M: Medium mouth feel with good carbonation.

D: Been waiting to try an IPA from this brewery for awhile and I was very pleased. Looking forward to trying their double as well. Recommended. (782 characters)

Photo of TCHopCraver
3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sockeye pours a a vibrant orange-amber with a very light khaki head. Carbonation looks somewhat small and sparse. Lacing left behind on the pint glass is sticky and intricate.

The aroma has a very resiny, piney, and melon-like hopiness to it, along with a caramel and nutty malt presence. I smell a little metal in the smell, too. Is this from the can, perhaps?

The overriding flavor in Sockeye Red is that of a big, juicy grapefruit blended with pine cone and dank cannabis. I really like how the big fruity flavor meshes with the dry, earthy hop character. A little awkward nuttiness creeps into the profile in the middle. Also, there is a bit of a metallic flavor that really comes out at the end of each sip. I do not think that it detracts from the beer at all, though.

The mouthfeel is sort of an exercise in extremes. At first, it's pretty juicy, but not quite medium bodied, then the hops jump in and slam the juiciness into the ground with their dry dankness. Just a little unbalanced and not smooth enough to be characterized as good.

Overall, I thought the flavors in this beer were good, but it was just a little rough around the edges. Very hoppy and dank and fruity, but that nutty smell and flavor were a little strange. I also thought that the flavors and mouthfeel just did not synthesize perfectly. Good beer. (1,334 characters)

Photo of SanDiegoBeerLove
3.89/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dates 04/01.

A - Amber color with about a finger and a half of light tan head average lacing.

S - Smell of Caramel, Pineapple, Citrus, Candied sugar and hint of Rose wine.

T - Tastes of Citrus, Hops, Tart Raspberries, sweet stawberries, and a mineral water finish.

M - Medium body with a crisp bite.

D - Overall a very good and drinkable Hoppy Red Ale. I will be buying this one again hopefully a little fresher. (425 characters)

Photo of stoutfiend27
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a friend of mine brought me this back after he took his yearly trip to alaska....bottled the second week of august..22 oz bottle poured into a foothills 10oz glass to taste..

a-coppery gold color...nice off white head that leaves quite nice lacing...bubbly

s-piney and resiny..citrus and grapefruit and a hint of grass...very little malt back in the nose but enough is there to suffice i would think...

t-grass and cirtus upfront...pine then maybe some grapefruit...bitterness throughout...

m-slightly prickly and very oily...coats the mouth well

d-suffers a bit due to the bitterness...i mean i love hops but needs a slight bit more balance..

overall my first offering from midnight sun and im impressed...and very grateful to the friend that brought me this bottle...got a artic rhino to try at some point.. (815 characters)

Photo of bigbeerdrinka
3.46/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a golder copper color with a very strong off-white head which seems to never recede. Leaves a nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: Initial tones are of strong hop nature, with a hint of caramel and barely any malt tones from what I can pick up.


Taste: Initially hops are all I can taste from this brew, and the hop flavor lasts throughout the brew. Slight malt tones are present but not many. Strong bitterness, but not much else going on here.

Mouthfeel: Decent carbonation which splashes the mouth. This beer is of medium to light body.

Drinkability: Very bitter and hop like but I was hoping for something a little more besides that. Goes down easy enough but the flavor is not too complex and more single minded (just very hoppy).

Overally a decent IPA but needs more malt to fill up the flavor. If your a hop head, you may like this beer but there are definetly better offerings out there. (925 characters)

Photo of bcm119
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A reddish amber color with a substantial frothy head. Wonderful PNW hop smell with some sweetish caramel hints. Hops are very prominent, and bitter. They are fresh, green, and permeate the palate with citrus rind bitterness. Delicious. The malt is substantial, and has a caramel flavor, but thankfully isn't very sweet, and its overpowered by the C hops anyway. While I normally don't like malty IPAs, this one's hop profile is so strong, green and fresh it really works well. Finishes clean and fairly dry. All this flavor in a 5.7 abv beer... I love it. If it were only cheaper I could drink this all night. A very nice IPA. I'm glad Midnight Sun is distributing around here now. (681 characters)

Photo of kmcnair
3.57/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, a very welcome freshness dating on the bottle and consumed from my 22oz Arrogant Bastard glass. This pours a nice redish amber color and makes a HUGE off white head. H-U-G-E!!! I was gentle with the pour and there was nothing stopping this monstrosity of creamy head. Aroma is a decent blend of cascade hops and a bit of malt, very standard west coast IPA flare here, fitting of the style but nothing too special for me, notes of citrus. Flavor is bitter but not overly complex, light grapefruit esters in the finish, fairly well balanced. Medium mouthfeel with lots of carbonation and a dry finish. It is a solid drinkable brew, but it just doesn't sock me in the eye like I was hoping! I think there are much better options on the market for this style. (768 characters)

Photo of hophead247
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Quite cloudy and orange amber in color. Strong hoppiness and moderately bitter with some orange citrus, but what makes this IPA good is that it has a solid, lightly sweet malt backbone, though the hops does remain somewhat dominant here. It has a mild sourness (in all 3 tastings) and a lingering hops bitterness that outlasts the malt in the finish. Medium to full bodied with a solid mouthfeel, and high carbonation levels that expand inside the mouth on each sip. Very hoppy, though soapy nose, but with a fair amount of maltiness for nice balance. (551 characters)

Photo of GIVEMEBACKMYSON
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So this Sockeye Red has a mildly ruby color, plenty clear, with a mild and lacing froth.
The nose speaks solely of a sugared spruce, with more sugar than spruce.
The taste has a lot of the foreshadowed pine resin notions, with an unexpected, wild, and fleeting sweetness that for a brief glimpse makes me think about a cotton candy machine I always wanted.
Overall a good American IPA, which I must say bears a VERY strong
resemblance to 3Floyds Alpha King. Very muvugin strong indeed.

And that's a good thing. (513 characters)

Photo of KevinBrewer
3.86/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Clear dark reddish copper hue with a billowy tan head that last forever and leaves tons of sticky lacing on the glass.

N- Pungent, earthy hops with accents of grapefruit, pineapple, and melon.

T- Sweet toasty malt supports herbal and grapefruit hops. There is a light tropical fruitiness along with twangy grapefruit bitterness in the middle. The bitterness tastes sort of medicinal to me, I guess powdery would be the closest word to describe it. Grapefruit rind, grassy bitterness, and some mineral in the aftertaste.

M- Medium-light body with a bone dry bitter finish.

D- Nice tasty red IPA. The medicinal quality of the bitterness bothers me a little. I think the beer would be an A+ if it were less bitter and had more of the fruitiness. I might change my mind after trying this beer a few more times. I'll find out as I plan to buy a few more bombers.

EDIT: Holy shit, this beer is so hoppy it turns your tongue yellow! (934 characters)

Photo of kennyo
3.99/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, pours with nice big, rocky head, kind of Belgian like. The head stays for the entire beer. Reddish/amber color, clear. Sweet hoppy aroma, lots of Cascades wafting thru the air.no malt aroma at all, hops take over. Mouthfeel average, not thin, not thick. More hops than malt in the flavor profile. Very drinkable beer, goes down very nice. Very nice beer for my first beer from the state of Alaska. (412 characters)

Photo of TheLiterati
4.07/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

After completing a full marathon up in Anchorage, AK, home of Humpy’s Great Alaskan Ale House, just about anything would have tasted good to our little team of runners! Still, we were determined to S-L-O-W-L-Y make the one block walk from the Egan Convention Center where our “official” victory party was being held, to Humpy’s where the real party would begin!

Being a fan of BIG Pacific Northwest IPAs – especially those not readily available in So Cal where I live – I was looking forward to having a sampling of what Humpy’s had to offer.

We all settled on Humpy’s Sockeye Red. As the team beer aficionado, I was asked to describe the potentially hoppy bite of a big Pac Northwest IPA. And as I watched the Sockeye being poured, I warned our little crew: this could be bigger than any beer they’d ever had.

Then again, they’d all just done a full- or half-marathon, so why not go for it?

I’ll say this: if doing a 26.2-mile footrace didn’t knock me on my butt, the Sockeye IPA certainly did. A beautifully red-amber IPA with a nose that comes close to overwhelming – but doesn’t – this ale demands careful consideration and is meant to be fully appreciated.

One team member immediately observed the notes of grapefruit and citrus, both in the taste and the nose. This is what Humpy’s describes as a “med-high hoppy bitterness,” and believe me Sockeye delivers.

The mouthfeel wasn’t as heavy as I’d have expected from ale as heavily hopped as this one, but it wasn’t unpleasant. It started with a nice amount of carbonation that didn’t get in the way of the complexity of flavors – a nice balance of citrus and malt, a tart sweetness without being syrupy or cloying – and ended with smooth and dry.

We paired this beer with the Alaskan Smoked Salmon Spread, served with French bread along with some other tasty appetizers. The spread had a peppery bite, but the Sockeye more than stood up to it and made for a nice pairing.

Drinkable? Absolutely. I’ve read that you can get this Ale in bottles in the Pac Northwest. Though I’m sure it won’t quite stand up to having this ale at the source, you can bet I’ll snag at least a few bottles on my next trip north! (2,215 characters)

Photo of Elemental
4.52/5  rDev +18.6%
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. (470 characters)

Photo of MrNuggets
4.7/5  rDev +23.4%
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. (391 characters)

Sockeye Red IPA from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 216 ratings.