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Meltdown Double IPA - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Meltdown Double IPAMeltdown Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

71 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 71
Hads: 149
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 13.8%
Wants: 20
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

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

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SargeC on 04-12-2008

The days are long but the season is short. So what gives? Sleep! After doing more before midnight than most Outsiders do in a week, Alaskans deserve some down time. And these moments of relaxation demand more than that ordinary, non-distinct lawn mower beer. Celebrate a day well done with a beer done well—a seriously delicious IPA with some scorchin’ hops.

80 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 71 | Hads: 149
Photo of John_M
2.73/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the Saraveza DIPA event.

The beer pours a copper amber color with good head retention and lacing. The beer certainly looks nice enough, however.... as soon as I took one whiff of this beer, my immedate reaction was "this is a DIPA?" The beer smelled sweet and malty, with almost a buttery overtone. There was a hint of underlying citrus as well, but this really didn't smell anything like your typical DIPA. On the palate, the beer delivers considerable hoppy bitterness, but the beer was still over the top sweet and malty (IMHO). The finish was bitter and hot from alcohol, though neither flavor component was enough to counter the level of sweetness I picked up in this beer. Mouthfeel was medium bodied to full, with a long, hot, bitter, alcoholic finish.

Only got a 4 or 5 ounce pour, but even that was too much for me. After several sips I just gave up and dumped the remains down the drain. Probably the first beer I've ever had from MS that I flat out disliked. After reading over some of the other reviews, I'm wondering if freshness might have been an issue with this particular keg.

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Photo of beertunes
3.08/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This bottle was purchased on 3/31/10 and had the date code punched for the first week of April. I don't know if the code machine is off or if this bottle is a year old. Poured a pretty orangeish yellow with a tall white head (this is a very happy beer, lots of carbonation) that had great retention and lacing.

The aroma was solidly pine and citrus hops, no noticeable malt in the nose. The flavor was also dominated by the hops, again citrus and pine, with a strong metallic taste and aftertaste.

The body and drinkability were both typical for the style. I've heard so many good things about this brewery and I found this beer to a little disappointing. I'll try to find a bottle I know is fresher and revisit this beer and see if my opinion changes. As it is, I found this to be an average example of this style, worth a shot if you see it, but not worth going out of you way for.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.15/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Acquird for $12.00 at a nearby Vendome. I dig the colorful label art. 8.00% ABV confirmed. Brewed & Bottled in Anchorage, AK. Self-identifies as a Double IPA on the label; I'm reviewing as such. Not sure what "scorchi' hops" are, but okay. 22 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pry-off branded pressure cap served into an Oskar Blues pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average given the brewery's reputation, but I can't recall being blown away by them in the past.

Served cold, straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a three finger light light khaki colour head. I dig the somewhat creamy, slightly soft looking complexion. Good thickness and retention (~5-6+ minutes). Lacing is inconsistent, uneven, and light as the head slowly recedes.

Body colour is a clear pale copper. Not real vibrant, but I wouldn't call it dull. Translucent/transparent. No yeast particles are visible. Clearly filtered.

Overall, it looks like standard fare for the style. The head retention is notable, but otherwise it's run of the mill. Looking forward to trying it.

Sm: Floral hops, some grapefruit citrus esters, and other assorted juicy hop notes. Pale malts. Clean and intriguing, if clinical and suppressed. A mild strength aroma. Not getting any oily, nectary, or truly fruit hop character. Maybe a biteen of tropical fruit, but I can't place the distinct notes on account of me broken nose (all apologies, lads.) No yeast or alcohol comes through. Timid for the style, but pleasant and appealing. As it warms slightly, I pick up more and more caramalt.

Hops and malts seem balanced based on the aroma, but surprisingly restrained for the oft-flamboyant style. Looking forward to trying it.

T: Getting some light bubblegum and tropical fruit notes up front. Cotton candy. This is the type of hop profile I despise in an IPA, but luckily it mellows as it moves into the second act, whereupon pale and caramalts take over, yielding a worthwhile refreshing clean body. Floral hop character throughout. Uncommonly, the little hop bitterness that does come through is localized to the first act. Strange, but welcome.

No lingering bitterness on the finish - just a sweet soft hop and malt combination. Creamy within constraints on the style; I like that.

Fair complexity for the style. Not much subtlety; it's quite in-your-face. Flavour depth is on the lower end. Flavour intensity is above average overall, but quite timid for the style. Flavour duration is average.

No yeast character comes through. Maybe a bit of alcohol does come through, though.

I want far more balance, but it does hide its hop bitterness nicely - which is more than I can say about most beers in the style.

Mf: Smooth, wet, clean. Slightly soft. Shy of refreshing, but enjoyable to consume. Suits the flavour profile pretty well, but doesn't come off custom-tailored to it. Decent execution. Pretty good - if high - carbonation. Not oily. Somewhat creamy. Decent presence on the palate.

Dr: A drinkable Imperial IPA for the ABV, but it leaves a bit to be desired. Balance isn't ideal, and complexity and subtlety are lacking. If not for the prohibitively high pricetag for the quality, I'd probably get it again - preferably on-draught. I'll enjoy finishing this bomber by meself. Above average overall but in need of work. I doubt I'd want a second one.


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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.23/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a deep yellow color with good carbonation and a small white head. Nose is weaker than I expected with grass, malt. Taste is caramel malt, faded hops, grass, booze. Mouthfeel is malty, chewy, flat on hops, no bitterness. Drinkability is average.

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Photo of flannelman808
3.39/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pouring from a 2 and 3/4 month old bottle... maybe a fresher bottle would have lived up the hype.

A: This one pours a very bright yellow-golden color and is just about crystal clear. Topped with a bone white head which holds its self together rather well while never growing to more than a half inch or so. Lacing is good and clings all over the glass.

S: Smells rather dull, not booming with aromatics as I had hoped. Golden pine needles sneak out of the glass along with some husky malty notes.

T: Muted muddied flavors follow the aroma's disappointment. Husk and malt notes are definitely present. Brown/golden pine needle like bitterness suggests itself to the palate and perhaps some bitter orange pith along with brown sugar caramel notes. Finishing on the sweet side of the spectrum.

M: Prickly and very sticky.

O: This is a flawed beer as far as I'm concerned and way overpriced. All and all its not a horrible beer Its quite decent actually however I'm holding it up to other successful products by Midnight Sun as well as a general High brow approach to the style. Fail.

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Photo of brotherloco
3.48/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz Bomber. Bottle is notched 3rd week of May 2011.

Pours a mostly clear dull gold with an initial inch of beige foam, settles to a small head. A nice bit of delicate lacing.

Smells of citrus and tropical fruits. Strong tangerine and mango notes. Slightly more earthy than typical DIPA's. Malt stays in the background.

Taste reflects the earth-tinged tropical fruits. Some background citrusy orange and grapefruit. Alcohol presence is a lot stronger than I usually get in an 8% beer. It comes on strong in the middle and sticks around for the duration. The finish is a mix of hoppy bitterness and alcohol, and gets a little metallic.

Both the body and carbonation are on the low side of medium. Gets a little cloying over time.

Not a bad tasting beer from Midnight Sun, but not my favorite I've had from them.

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Photo of DaveHS
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light copper, with an inch of brilliant white
head that leaves moderate lacing. The nose is rich
and piney, with big zested citrus notes, fresh
crushed black pepper, hot, sweet booziness and
caramel malts. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with
pleasant, moderate carbonation. The first sip is
dominated by bracing bitterness and grapefruit. This
soon yields to thick, sweet malts, which fade out just
in time, revealing another layer of bitter, orangey
hops underneath. The finish is uncompromisingly
bitter, with a touch of dry graininess. Good, but overrated.

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Photo of mactrail
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear amber with an orange tint in the tall tumbler. Tangy and tart. Citrus aromas and even some orange blossom in the nose. Plenty of foam with a prickly mouthfeel.

This seems more dry than sweet, for all the malt. The alcohol is really hot and fumey. I'd guess it was higher than the 8% actual. The hops are bold and bitter. Flavors start with some mango and orange marmalade and move into the hot citrus peel and then grapefruit pith at the finish. Rather acidic after some sipping.

For my taste, I'd rather have more malty sweetness to go with the bitterness. However, I can see the attraction if you like an IPA that's more intense, rather than a hopped-up malt bomb like the majority of DIPAs. From the 22 oz bottle purchased at QFC in the University shopping center in Seattle.

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Photo of mikey711
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a fire-ish amber color with a inch of soapy white head that webs on the side of the glass. Head retention is pretty good and lots of carbonation rises from the bottom of the glass.

S: Very floral and piney. The hops have faded some as the smell of caramel and alcohol are not very well hidden by the hops.

T: Pine notes and caramel dominate. The hops taste like a pine tree smells and the malt is powerfully butterscotchy and caramely. More of a barleywine now than a DIPA

M: The booze overpowers slightly and it is a bit grainy tasting. Creaminess is decent but hard to detect with the alcohol.

D: I had a little bit of trouble with the pint I poured and passed off the rest for someone else to try. A whole bottle would have been way too much

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Photo of willjschmidt
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a nonic pint glass.

A: Pours a light golden color with an orange tint. Big thick pillowy white head forms on top.

S: Some grapefruit and pine resin in the nose.

T: A hop bomb for sure. A good does of citrus but it's not overwhelming. Very pungent finish with a lingering bitter aftertaste. Bitter aftertaste as well.

M: Medium bodied, medium to medium-high carbonation.

D: A decent DIPA, although not one of my favorites.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sunny tangerine with bumblebee borders and several stately bubble streams ascending within. Their destination is a wonderful looking chunk of foam that is midway between ivory and ecru. The melt down leads to a good bit of rockiness and lace that almost qualifies as eye candy.

The nose will receive a good score as long as it intensifies with warming (note: it doesn't). It smells like mostly pale malt is used, along with citrusy hops that probably start with the letter 'C'. This is simple beer so far, but that isn't necessarily a negative given the style.

Despite being bottled in the second week of April (3+ months ago), Melt Down Double IPA doesn't contain 'scorchin' hops' as claimed on the label. It's more bitter than hop flavorful and the alcohol isn't hidden as well as it could be. Let's see what the rest of the bomber has to say for itself.

As the nose implied, it tastes like nothing (or very little) darker than pale malt is present. Sweetness is on the low end, which is a positive. The hops are still primarily grapefruit-like, though their flavor should be bolder and brighter than it is. Not bad, just not great.

There's nothing wrong the mouthfeel's heft, but it's too sparkly for the style and ABV. Time hasn't taken the edge off the bubbles, which is somewhat surprising. In the end, this attribute is in line with most of the rest.

Melt Down Double IPA is a bit of a disappointment from a brewery that can definitely do better, as they've shown time and time again. Thanks to sprucetip for the bottle. Even though he didn't ask for a comparison, his home-brewed DIPA puts this one to shame.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 1/17/2010. Bottle thanks to riversideAK. Bottled April 2009. Pours a hazy orange with a thick, foamy white head. Aroma of caramel malt and oatmeal malt. Flavor still dominated by the malt with some grassy, sweaty hops in the finish. Some light fruitiness too. Decent IIPA even though it is a touch aged.

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Photo of ccrida
3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into my tall MSBC glass, Melt Down is a clear burnt gold with a big, frothy off-white head that leaves decent lace.

Smell is pungent hops, pine and stems.

Taste is similar, this is an earthy, bitter hop bomb. Not as much hop flavor as you get from the nose, but resin is countered by the sweet caramel malt.

Mouthfeel is dry, tannic hop oils, medium bodied.

Drinkability is OK, I'm a hop head and always love an Portland style IPA...but this isn't really my style, to bitter, malty and earthy. Almost like the de-budded the hops and brewed with stems. Certainly not something I'd drink alot of during the summer, unless I was just looking to get drunk.

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Photo of sprucetip
3.56/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes. Very attractive, clearn light golden/amber, frothy white head, good retention, patchy lacing.

SMELL Fruity esters and floral hop notes hit quick and fade and are then hard to find for a while. A little bit grainy and faintly malty. Gros stronger late in the sample.

TASTE dry, grainy, more hop bitterness than flavor. Malty backing mostly buried underneath. Finishes dry and bitterness lingers. Like the nose, improves as it warms.

FEEL med/full body, pleasant viscous texture, dry character and lingering bitterness.

OVERALL I'm a big MSBC fan, but this one really doesn't do it for me. I've tried it several times and have come to this conclusion each time. It is the spring seasonal DIPA, dryer and lighter, intended to counter the more malty winter DIPA Cohoho. What I'm not liking about this is maybe intentional on the part of the brewery? But, it is still a well made Midnight Sun IPA, just not my favorite.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beer Revolution

A: The pour is a slightly hazed golden amber color with a big finger's worth of white head.

S: The hops in this one are quite different than what I'm used to with West Coast DIPAs. Lots of grassy notes along with a sweet bread malt base and some floral notes, perhaps.

T: The bitterness is fairly subtle, but this isn't a sweet IPA by any means. Lots of grassy, floral, and even some earthy hop notes along with more bready malt.

M: The body is somewhat light for a beer of this gravity, but I don't mind that at all. Nice crisp carbonation and a lingering bitterness on the finish.

D: Definitely not my favorite DIPA or Midnight Sun beer. Decent all around, but nothing that really stands out in a positive way.

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Photo of billshmeinke
3.61/5  rDev -6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a La Fin du Monde tulip. Picked up from K&L Wines.

A steady pour yields a two finger white rocky head. Golden in color, quite clear with bubbles rushing to the top. A nice layer of foam remains throughout. Excellent looking.

Smells strongly of malts. Honey and toffee. Some leafy/citrus hops in there as well.

Taste is similar, but more hoppy than expected based on the smell. Bitter resin, floral, earthy, and slightly citrusy hops. A bit leafy hop characteristic as well. A subtle honey malt background, and a hint of alcohol. Kind of comes up short compared to some of the better DIPAs out there.

On the high end of medium bodied with pretty high carbonation. Quite dry and a nice hop bite accompanied by prickly bubbles. Somewhat creamy as well.

This is basically an East Coast DIPA from Alaska. Barleywine like nose with a very bitter hop profile, but not much tropical fruit/citrus hop presence. Pretty good, but I must confess I'm partial to my West Coast DIPAs.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

From 7/9/10 notes. Had at a local DC tasting.

a - Pours a murky golden color with a hint of orange to it. No head or visible carbonation.

s - Smells of fruity and caramel malts, not a lot of hops.

t - Tastes of fruity and caramel malts, grapefruit and citrus hops.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, very smooth and easy to drink.

d - An ok IPA, but I didn't really feel like it was a DIPA or a hop bomb. Probably wouldn't look to have again.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 picked up at Brewforia... Paid about $11... shared with Brenda.. mine poured into my Delirium goblet.

2 finger foamy white head.. nice lacing.. the brew is hazy glowing orange.

Tons of citrus... pithy grapefruit.. a fair amount of pale maltiness..

Flavor mirrors the nose with a really bracing bitterness out of the gate.. same citric hoppiness... nice maltiness but doesn't really balance too well with the bitterness and the grapefruit zest.. medium mouthfeel with just the right amount of carbonation...

Really pretty interesting... was probably teeth stripping when fresh.. but this is certainly huge in the SoCal style of things..

My first Midnight Sun beer where I didn't have to thank AkBelgianBeast... I should say it anyway... I love trading with Frank, but I am not going to complain about finally getting access to some Midnight Sun in my neck of the woods.


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Photo of jeffjeff1
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up a couple days ago at Monument Wines and Spirits.

Appearance- coppery color, barely any head

Smell- citrus hops

Taste- citrus hops, little bit of hop bitterness in the finish

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- I think it was pretty good. I would buy it again and would recommend it. Pretty good

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Photo of popery
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled less than a month ago. This is a well-made DIPA but not one that I find particularly enjoyable. The aroma is quite nice, mostly floral/pine hop notes with very mild accompanying bready malt. On the other hand, while the flavor has some nice malt sweetness upfront, it quickly gives way to starkly bitter hops and the bone dryness of rubbing alcohol. That sounds bad, but it almost works. I just need a bit more of a residual malt sweetness lifeline to taste those more delicate hop flavors. The hops start to take on some earthy flavors. There's some pepper, as well. It's a bit like taking a bit of hops, pine needles or grapefruit skin: a fun figurative way to describe some DIPAs but not actually a pleasant experience. It's not too bitter; there just isn't enough delicacy, in my opinion. Mouthfeel is fairly raw. Interesting beer but not something that I'll be going back for.

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Photo of Bierlerner
3.66/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- poured an amberish straw color. Great fluffy white head. Sticky layers of lacing.

S- really light. resiny hops and citrus. Not much complexity in the nose.

T&M- Not all a hop bomb I was expecting. Nice toasted caramel notes. Nice fresh piney hops. Very balanced brew. Creamy mouth feel. Almost full bodied with great carbonation. Nice bittering dry finish.

O- A great DIPA. Great balance as welll. I just wish the hops were "scorchin"

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Photo of froghop
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a clear light orange with a large white head, and good lacing.

smell of grapefruit, caramel, some citrus, and a bit of floral.

taste is of grapefruit, pine, some caramel, and some earthiness, ends very bitter.

overall a pretty good double IPA.

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Photo of ihazabucket7
3.68/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a 4 oz snifter. Great color and a nice aroma. Had the citrus and malt flavor but the hop presence was not there. For a double IPA and the ABV on the beer it should have been present from the reviews I read. I think this beer that I had was old so giving it an honest review from my point. I was disappointed but I know it's not the brewers fault I just had an old beer. If I see it again I will get it and redo my review.

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Photo of Sammy
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A hopload, from City Beer Store. Dark body, with a lasting white head. Above average mouthfeel, there is caramel malts. You buy into bitterness, not very complex. A bomber is a lot. Still tasty and hop aromas. Appropriate carbonation, but still a little acidicand drying finish.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.72/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served in a snifter.

Appearance: light amber colored body with heavy bubbles throughout the beer. Average white head riding close to a finger's length settling steady with even leaving after a few sips.

Smell: lighth floral scent, not much else going on.

Taste: Tastes more bitter than advertised, with a heavy piney feel. I would have best paired this with some ribs or maybe some steak to get the best flavors out. Grapefruit is evident with enough hops to reset your palates.

Mouth: almost chewy when you drink it with a slight dry feel. Smooth to the point that if you drink IPAs this should be breeze.

Overall: Good beer, wouldn't go to the end of the world looking for it. I bought this in lieu of something else Midnight Sun makes and am honestly craving some Arctic Devil right about now. Spend the money and split with a friend, can't hurt. Salud!

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Meltdown Double IPA from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.