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Cohoho Imperial IPA - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Cohoho Imperial IPACohoho Imperial IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

158 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 158
Hads: 250
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 10.46%
Wants: 42
Gots: 20 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bierman9 on 04-28-2002

CoHoHo begins with generous measures of pale two-row and specialty malts along with spirit-boosters like brown sugar and honey. Hefty doses of Cascade, Centennial and Simcoe hops beautifully balance that outrageous malt bill while juniper berries heighten the festive character of this exuberant beer.

85 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 158 | Hads: 250
Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours amber chestnut under a thin cream colored foam collar.
S: Brown sugar and honey with some juniper notes.
T: It starts sweet with brown sugar and honey quickly followed by juniper. The uniper nicely balances the sugars and is not heavy handed or over stated. Resiny, piney hops appear in the after taste.
F: Luscious, smooth and creamy, full bodied and chewy, soft in the mouth with slightly below average carbonation.
O: A big beer that achieves a good balance of flavors.

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Photo of Bfarr
2.67/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Nut brown with a foamy tan head with great retention. Floral and light juniper aroma. Moderate bitterness balanced by caramel/honey sweetness with a light linger. Honey coating lingering with a robust mouthfeel.

Rather dark, even for a DIPA, this has rich malt characteristics with the honey and juniper lingering subtly in the finish. Flavors become rather muddy quite quickly. It's a fairly disappointing beer because the flavors are subtle but ultimately drowned out by the hops and bland sweetness. I will say I had higher expectations because of the ingredients and price point.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.74/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a murky dark crimson-orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, earth, brown sugar, citrus zest, and herbal hop aromas. Taste is much the same with earth, brown sugar, citrus zest, and herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is quite earthy all around, but there are some citrus hop aspects that are noticeable as well.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.03/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: ruby red, close to brown; 1 finger tan head that dissipated quickly; light lacing;

S: caramel malt, a bit of honey sweetness; pepper spiciness;

T: it's all caramel malt; no hops at all; at 85 IBUs, there should be hops somewhere, but it's not in the aroma or the taste and there's no bitterness at all;

M: a little syrupy; moderate carbonation;

O: I'm scoring this way below average and, in reading other reviews, I seem to be having an different experience; if I got the hop presence that other reviewers got, I would rate this higher; perhaps the bottle was old, but no date visible; considering how far from Alaska I am, I probably won't try this again; the odds of my getting a fresh bottle are not good;

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Photo of PicoPapa
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Top Hops. Pours a dark brown with ruby hues and a 1/2 inch of head. Tons of lacing. Nice aroma of tropical fruits and citrus. Very juicy. Pineapple, mango, orange and maybe even a hint of lime. The taste is very similar to the aroma. Sweet tropical fruits with some bitter orange peel. Hints of pine. Some caramel malt flavor towards the finish. Pretty boozey. Oily mouthfeel. This one smelled great and the taste let me down slightly, but its still very good. Overall, worth grabbing again.

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Photo of hreb
3.28/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

22oz bottle served in pint glass. Beer is deep red amber (way too dark for a proper IPA), syrupy, and relatively opaque, with lots of big soda bubbles. Caramel sweet aroma with a load of citrus hops, typical of double IPAs.

Taste is way on the bitter side, with aggressive American hops through the middle. I only get a hint of honey sweetness on the tip of my tongue. Disappointingly, I don't get any juniper at all. No, I don't get much in the way of either complexity or holiday spirit from this. And other than being calibrated to 85 IBUs, I wouldn't necessarily call it an American Double IPA. Maybe American winter warmer or imperial red ale.

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Photo of dar482
4.09/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The beer has this beautiful tropical floral aroma with tons of honey.

The flavor follows with that floral honey sweetness, a juniper (that makes as fruit sometimes), and almost a raw honey sweetened juice flavor.

A really interesting brew. Quite hoppy. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of Kuaff
4.44/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed in my tulip glass at cellar temperature.

Like Midnight Sun's Sockeye Red IPA, this also has the rich, deep red color of a spawning salmon. Quite dark for an IPA, imperial or not. It has a nice little puffy, one-finger head of off-white foam which sticks around for quite a while. Looks festive!

It smells like malty, dank hops. Definitely some brown sugar as well. I wanna say there's a fruitiness in the scent, too. It makes me think of wild berries I've picked, but not really any one certain variety.

This tastes sweet and tart in a similar way that cranberries do: It is fruity at first, but has a drying, bitter aftertaste. This, of course, works very well with the traditional flavor progression of the IPA style, what with the prevalent bitter hops which always come through at the end of these beers. The hoppy flavor of this one is nice and substantial. I think I taste the honey as well, which goes well with the biscuity finish. Mmm. Full of wonderfully complementary flavors, this is.

The feel is kind of thick and heavy. It supports the flavors well.

Just as the Coho salmon is a bit bigger than the sockeye, this DIPA is like a bigger version of the Sockeye Red IPA. It tastes similar, but more intense. This is a bigger catch, you see.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours crystal clear reddish copper color with a nice 2 finger dense cream colored head with good retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of orange zest, grapefruit, orange rind, pineapple, lemon zest, juniper, floral, light pine, caramel, honey, brown sugar, grass, and herbal earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of malt and hop notes. Taste of big orange zest, grapefruit, pineapple, orange rind, lemon zest, juniper, floral, grass, caramel, honey, brown sugar, pine, and herbal earthiness. Moderate amount of citrus bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, citrus zest, pineapple, juniper, floral, caramel, honey, brown sugar, grass, pine, and herbal earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice flavor balance and complexity; with a great balance of malt/hoppiness; with zero cloying flavors present after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy and fairly sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent DIPA. Very nice hop and malt flavor balance and complexity; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.64/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

8.0% ABV confirmed. 22 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap acquired earlier tonight and served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average given Midnight Sun's reputation, though I wasn't particularly impressed with TREAT.

Served chilled. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Not paired with food.

A: Pours a three finger khaki colour head of nice cream and froth, good thickness, and very good (~4+ minutes) retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a clear translucent amber-copper. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. It's more amber coloured in the body than most beers in the style; I expected your run of the mill generic copper but I'm pleasantly surprised. Appealing for an IPA. Is it the berries that lend it that colour?

Sm: Floral hop character, light citrus, a bit of hop oil and bitterness, bright berries, spruce, brown sugar, and toasted malts. Almost a bit like a winter warmer meets an IPA. A mild strength aroma and a pleasant one, but it does like the hoppy presence I'd expect from a good IPA; it's not assertive. A bit thin and weak in terms of evoking complex hop notes; there's no pine or grabbing citrus or really notable distinct hop notes. I'm a bit put off, but that may just be expectations.

T: Berries come off artificial. Brown sugar doesn't add much of note. Hop character is generic floral. Way too malty, with toasted character and syrupy amber malt extract emerging as dominant. Hops are not the focus here, to its detriment. Caramel. Quite sugary and sweet. Balance is a mess. It lacks focus. Poorly constructed given the style; where's the hop content? Boring and bland. Disappointing. Lacks complexity and subtlety. I don't get any honey, at least not in the sense that other IPAs feature honey (like Bell's Hopslam or various Dogfish Head beers).

Mf: Thin and undercarbonated, yet smooth and wet. Quite underwhelming. Weak. Terrible palate presence. Unable to support its flavour profile. Sticky and a bit nectary. Quite poorly executed. Almost feels like a cask ale (and I mean that as pejoratively as possible). I do like that it's soft.

Dr: A huge disappointment from Midnight Sun, and a failure for the style. Very overpriced for its lack of quality. I'm quickly losing hope that Midnight Sun will live up to its reputation. I'm in no hurry to buy any of their beers in the immediate future, but I hope they have better offerings than this in their lineup. Not at all recommended. It's just so artificial. I will say that it hides its ABV decently, but there isn't much else going for it. It's drinkable in a general sense; I'll have no trouble finishing the bottle by myself. But I'd sooner reach for a basic Lagunitas or an Alesmith IPA at less than half the price.


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3.79/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Deep bronze color and thin head has the look of a good old ale. Pretty scant on the head. Certainly appears filtered.

Smells of those metallic biscuit daffodil spruce that you see growing around these parts.

This is basically a large hop forward ipa flavor profile. Spicy, peppery and prickly. The honey and juniper...i wouldn't have found them if i weren't looking for them to begin with. Slight gun holster flavor to scent mental trigger in the finish as well as a nod to butter popcorn.

Hard to get to riled up about a good mouthfeel in an IIPA but this one fits it just right for what that's worth.

Overall...it's decently drinkable as an IIPA. I had this back in 2008 though and i remember something a heck of a lot more lively and citrusy and that's more my thing I guess.

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Photo of metter98
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear dark amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige head that died down, consistently leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are aromas of citrus hops, brown sugar and honey in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has prominent notes of juniper berries along with flavors of citrus.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a bit thick and chewy on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is quite malty and makes for an interesting one to sip with the juniper berry and honey flavors. It has a good balance and hides its alcohol well from the taste.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear very dark copper in color with light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall tan head that reduces to a thin layer (approximately 1/8 finger) covering the entire surface of the beer with a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderately strong aromas of citrus hops with some fairly strong amounts of juniper that contribute an herbal spiciness.

T: The beer is slightly sweet with the flavor of honey and a light underlying maltiness. The overall flavor is dominated by the citrus hops and juniper. Moderate amounts of lingering bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Feels thick with some light dryness in the finish.

O: Too intense to be an easy drinking beer but an enjoyable sipping beer.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter.

Appearance: Dark amber with a bubbly body, head is an off-white slightly thick frame coming off 1/2" off the body.

Smell: Smells really f'n good, strong hops with hints of pine and floral.

Taste: It is good but not impressing to the point where you will say "this is a keeper". Little hoppy and floral like i stated above but inmho, "bland".

Mouth: Medium carbonation with a well above average stickiness to it.

Overall: This is good beer but so much better out there in the Imperial IPA category. Buy it if you're curious but I would take a better looks at your usual if you know what I mean, Salud!

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Photo of Durge
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark but transluscent mahogany color with a decent white cover and plenty of broken sheets of lacing. The bouquet is funky swamp pineapple-citrus. Pretty odd but not that it’s bad at all, just a bit odd and hard to figure what to expect. The flavor happily comes out with neat swamp malt and lots of herbal hops. Can’t really say that I pick up a decided juniper ingredient but it comes through a little on the edge of this funkified hop brew. Body is medium and feel is pretty sprite with brisk but tasteful carbonation. Caramel comes pouring through once you adjust to those swampy qualities. But the hops do hold up and overall this is a good beer. I really don’t see the holiday beer theme, but this is worthwhile at anytime and that’s all that matters.

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Photo of Gmann
3.76/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear ruby color with a huge fluffy egg shell colored head that left chunky lacing on the glass. Not sure I have seen an IPA/DIPA this color before.

The aroma is hoppy. Big tropical fruit presence with some pine and herbal hop. The malt seems quite sweet from the addition of honey and brown sugar.

The taste is odd. The beer is very sweet, noticable brown sugar flavor; perhaps even some toffee notes. The hops are resiny and they bring tropical fruit notes. There is also a onion like flavor from the hops. After you get past the hops, the juniper kicks in for its typical twang flavor as well as its bitterness. Quite an earthy flavor. It is very flavorful, just not sure its my cup of tea.

The feel is moderate with fizzy/prickly carbonation. Sweet on the palate but plenty of bitterness to offset. The hops and juniper do a good job balancing actually. Some lingering bitterness and finishes a hair sticky.

A bold DIPA. Way too sweet for my liking. Not a big fan of a sweet malt and a tropical fruit hop profile.

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Photo of JizackFH
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review #606

A - This beer pours a dark copper color that has good clarity. There is a huge fluffy 3-finger off-white head resting on top. The head has really good retention, and there is a nice sheet of lace left behind on the glass.

S - The nose has a good amount of toasted malt and a nice piney hop aroma. There are also some fruity aromas and some honey sweetness.

T - The taste follows the nose pretty well. The taste starts off with some nice caramel sweetness and a bit of fruitiness. Then there is a nice amount of piney hop aroma. Some citrus flavor is also present. The finish leaves some lingering caramel malt and piney hop flavor behind on the palate.

M - This has a medium body and good carbonation. It goes down easy and has a nice smooth feel to it. There is a nice amount of sweetness and a goos amount of balancing hop bitterness, but not as much as i excepted.

O - This has good drinkability. It has good flavor and the alcohol is hidden quite well. i could easily drink a few glasses of this in an evening. Overall, I think it is a good beer and a pretty solid DIPA. I just wish there was a little more hop flavor and bitterness. I think this beer is worth trying out. I'd drink it again.

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Photo of CHickman
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy ruby red color with a tan 1 finger head that faded slowly and left great lacing with rings as it went down; impressive.

Smells of big citrus hops up front, with pineapple, grapefruit, orange peel, floral hops, sweet malt, caramel, brown sugar, bread and light spices; very fruity and pungent, this is what an IPA should smell like.

Tastes of citrus hops, pineapple, grapefruit, lemon, orange peel, floral hops like wet hops were added, herbs, pine cone/piney hops, sweet malt, caramel, brown sugar, light toasted grains, and light spices like cinnamon and coriander; nice balance for a mild hop-bomb, this has hints of breads and grains, is fruity and flavorful, and going down fast - too fast.

Mouthfeel is creamy and bordering on oily slick, with mild carbonation, a medium body and a nice bitter aftertaste that leaves a nice crisp citrus pucker.

This beer is highly drinkable and hides the ABV incredibly well, even for a DIPA; a definite session beer for such a high powered IPA. A definite recommendation, this went down smooth and easy. Glad it made it across the US to NYC.

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Photo of Billolick
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bomber, with "month and week bottled" information notched onto the side of the label, nice.

Purchased at DeCicco's in Ardsley, NY, $10.99

Pours dark amber, near clear, medium dark tan head, good retentive proclivities, and leaves quality low sheeting and ample bits of lacing.

Hopped up nose.

Again, quite hopped focused on the palate, with a load of maltyness riding alongside. Densly flavorful, with caramel, some tea, and pervasive hopping.

Quality DIPA, with better then average complexity and interest.

Looking forward to trying the other Midnight Sun brews that have seen fit to add my neck of the woods to their distrabution area.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Nostradamus flute. Pours a medium to dark coppery orange amber. Nice two finger off-white fine head with good persistence and lacing. Moderate aroma of fresh herbal and piney hops and light sweet malt. Flavor starts with piney hops and citrus. Sweet malt, pine (juniper) and honey sweetness dominate the middle and the sweet element really moderates the finish, leaving an pleasant integrated flavor. The hops are again present in the aftertaste. Moderate body with a touch of creaminess. Quite nice flavor progression and an enjoyable IPA. I'll try this every year. Cohoho.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.62/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours like a massive dipa, leaning to the darker end of the dipa spectrum, while it tried its hardest to maintain an orange appearance, there was some lighter brown running around in it.

Aroma was not as Simcoe pungent as I expected, they definitely did not skimp on the C-hops. Loads of bitterness all over this, not really a sweet dipa, this slams hard with bitterness, despite having what appears to be a massive malt bill of 2 row.

I've always looked at Midnight Sun as an expensive proposition, and while this beer is decent, their stuff just isn't to the point with me where I can suggest that people go out and look for this and pay any price. Usually close to $10 a bomber means I'm demanding excellence. Pretty thick mouthfeel, heavy, bitter. Alcohol is moderately noticeable. Buttloads of caramel. Feels like a big dipa recipe put through the xmas spicer.

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Photo of snaotheus
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz beer poured into a large mug

Pours surprisingly dark, cloudy brown, beige head, big, fades leaving a thick sheet of lacing. Smell is hoppy and molassesy.

Taste is a little muted, it might be too cold, but it seems a little spicy, fairly hoppy, definitely some detectable brown sugar

Mouthfeel is rather rough and acidic. Overall, solid beer.

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Photo of CooperEllis
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle from travisd13 (I think....90% sure). Either way, thanks for many great trades Travis.

This is more than a year old, but it's been properly stored and didn't suffer too much given that there was still a solid hops profile, though the nose was dominated by the winter-y aromas.

Have to say was expecting more citrus in the taste given other reviews and this is where the age may have caught up with it. But the other flavors (juniper, brown sugar) are present along with a more barleywine flavor with the stronger malt mixed with brown sugar.

Mouthfeel is excellent, smooth, a touch oily but still a crisp finish.

It's not really an IPA - or wasn't at this stage in the game - but was a very tasty brew that I'd seek out and might choose to age again depending on how it was fresh.


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Photo of flannelman808
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: clear burnt copper brown and has poor retention, and decent lacing.

S: Brown sugared burnt orange peel, dark coco, faint ripe red fruit and juniper.

T: Brown fallen pine needle, citrus peel, brown sugared honey, and caramel/toffee lead the way. Nice balance between sweet and dry flavors. The Juniper is pretty hidden and I think sort of intertwines with the more usual flavors associated with hops. This could be the starting point for a good idea...

M: Pretty sticky with a good finish.

O: I like this but it is a work in progress. Ever so subtle solvent flavors take away plusses. The sort of idea of a spiced holiday IPA, however, is an intriguing one.

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Photo of TCHopCraver
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cohoho (very festive) emerges a dark copper-amber-mahogany from the bomber. A scant, light khaki head sits atop the beer and remains as a haze. There are some brown hues in the body, as well. Small carbonation bubbles drift upward at a medium pace. The lacing is pretty sticky, dotty, and amoeba-like.

The aroma has some very nice, rounded citrus notes and is balanced nicely by a pretty hefty malt with some caramel characteristics. Of the three added ingredients, I can smell honey the most, followed by brown sugar and juniper berries. It's a sweet aroma for a Double IPA, but that's to be expected, I guess.

The first sip hits reveals very sweet notes of the honey and brown sugar, supported by the caramel-ly malt bill. I'd say the grapefruit and orange hop notes take a backseat to the sweet elements, but the finish does have a pleasant, resiny hop finish. Pretty good.

Cohoho has a medium-bodied feel for a Double IPA with a very coating sweetness at first. That sweetness is replaced by a decently dry and bitter hop finish. Carbonation is pretty high and complements the flavors well.

I liked this beer more than I thought I might. I wasn't sure how brown sugar, honey, and juniper berries would complement a Double IPA, but it was really a pretty nice flavor. A little sweeter than I generally prefer, but nicely done.

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Cohoho Imperial IPA from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.