Mayhem - Belgian-Style Double IPA - Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Mayhem - Belgian-Style Double IPAMayhem - Belgian-Style Double IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

85 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 85
Reviews: 58
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 8.04%
Wants: 15
Gots: 7 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Reswald on 02-19-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Chaotic yet hypnotic, Mayhem is a deliberate Double IPA, brewed and conditioned with a special Belgian yeast that contributes complexity and spice. Abundant American hops offer grapefruit, pine, must and mint, which play off the fullness and sweetness of pale malts then provide a biting yet enticing finish.

100 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 85 | Reviews: 58
Reviews by AKBelgianBeast:
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is pretty much a spot on wrath clone. Very similar. Very american in the hop department, but definitely some belgian character lurking. If you want more reviews of this beer, look at the wrath reviews. There is not much i can elaborate one, its the same beer.

More User Reviews:
Photo of TCHopCraver
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was bottled in the fourth week of March, 2011, so I'm not expecting the freshest, hoppiest beer. I'll take that into account. Bomber split two ways.

Mayhem pours a dark golden-amber into my pint glass. The head is very white and is a strong finger and a half tall. The body is a little cloudy.

First smell reveals a very well-struck balance between pale and caramel malt, slightly faded grapefruit, pine, and minty hops, and the Belgian yeast used in the beer. The mint really shines through with a deeper inhale. It's not a very potent aroma, but it's very clean and good. After the beer has warmed a bit and I swirl my glass vigorously, the spiciness of the yeast and the mint aroma pops even more.

Sweet, hoppy citrus and malty caramel flavors kick off the taste, with a little spiciness from the Belgian yeast tossed in for good measure. A heavy hint of mint comes through near the end, then is washed away by a piney, resiny bitter hop finish. It's a very well-composed taste and is really influenced by the hops, even 8ish months after bottling.

The mouthfeel has a nice combination of smoothness, spicyness, and bitterness. It's a medium-bodied feel that is lightly syrupy at first, finished off by a very dry bitter bite.

This is another really good offering from Midnight Sun. I really like how all of the component flavors merge and I am pretty impressed how prominent the hops are so long after bottling. Solid, tasty brew.

Photo of Mora2000
4.32/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to travita for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a yellow color with a white head. The aroma is piney and resiny hops with some citrus notes as well as some Belgian yeast character. The flavor is orange and resiny hops with Belgian yeast. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very hoppy and very good Belgian IPA. Another great beer from Midnight Sun.

Photo of Soonami
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for popery for sending this in a trade.

Solid belgian IPA. It is a hazy orange with an thick head sticky head. There is a good bit of sweet tangerine, banana and clove in the nose. The bitterness comes on late, but doesn't mend very well with the spice. I think it's my personal prejudice, but I just don't think that piney, citrusy hops combine well with belgian yeast. However, this beer is probably one of the better examples of the style I've had.

Photo of Sammy
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from City Beer Store. Medium orange colour, with big off-white head. Lots of lace. Taste is c-hop (resiney citrus), some spiciness, and funk. Decent mouthfeel. Wafts funk. Carbonation above-average. Better as it warms to room temperature. Tasty stuff, but a bottle requires a meal to accompany it.

Photo of dirtylou
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber, chucks 85th market, paired with some unpacking

appearance: served in my great lakes chalice (how wonderful it is to reunite with my glassware), glowing golden-orange body, full white foam with strong retention

smell: aggressively hopped belgian, bubblegum, woody, herbal - rosemary, thyme

taste: alcohol plays strong, aggressive hopping somewhat faded over time but not in an offensive manner - big belgian yeast, candied sugars, pineapple, wood, white grapefruit. strong flavors but the alcohol bite should take a backseat

mouthfeel: oily, smooth

overall: good, but not exceptional

Photo of dbossman
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Apricot colored and hazy with a huge frothy head (great retention); lacing is quite good

S: Wonderful grapefruit, floral, pine, and herbal aromas with a citrus/apple yeasty fruitiness all on top of a pleasant--and even grassy--grainy malt presence

T: Wonderful hop presence (and this is six months old!): citrus and pine on top of a bready malt base; a touch of fruity yeastiness; so balanced and tasty

F: Great medium body with a pleasant oily stickiness

O: Such a great hoppy Belgian DIPA; my first beer from Midnight Sun and I will be back for sure

Photo of nickd717
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What is "mayhem" supposed to be, the sound of someone clearing their throat? I kid. Bomber from City Beer in SF.

Pours hazy golden-straw in color (in low lighting) with a frothy and lacey white head that sticks around for quite some time.

The aroma is very Belgium. Oh look, this is a Belgium IPA isn't it? I love Belgiums and would love to visit Belgian again. Spicy Belgium yeast is a big player in this one. You also get some light fruits, pineapple, and citrusy/herbal hops. This does not smell all that hoppy given the 100 IBUs.

The flavor has pale malt and an almost wheaty quality, along with a decent hop bite, citrusy, tropical (pineapple), herbal, and resinous. Belgian yeast is big once again. This does not taste all that hoppy given the 100 IBUs.

Fairly lively carbonation and medium body for the style.

Very good overall, but definitely not one of Midnight Sun's best.

Photo of Kegatron
4.15/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a goblet. Big thanks go to Bubba83 for recently sending this my way.

Pours a hazy burnt orange, with 2 or more fingers of stiff bright-white foamy head. This retains with a nice looking near finger cap of rich froth that doesn't quit and just completely coats the sides of the glass with thick lacing. The aroma smells floral and bitter in the nose, as well as a little bit piney and herbal to. Grapefruit is sharp in the nostrils, while underlying malts at a sweet twang. The yeast adds some notes of airy fruit, a soft spiciness, and a bit of must. Just a touch of an alcohol presence is barely noticeable.

The taste is deeply bitter on the palate with grapefruit juice and sharp earthy rind. This is decently balanced by a malt backbone of tight bready character and sweet fruit that comes in off the edges and adds some extra evening to the flavors. Dry sharp spice dominates the finish, lingering with bitter rind and dusty yeast and just completely parches the entire backend of the profile. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a big creamy sharpness that blows up in the mouth and has this feeling a touch over carbonated. This does start to settle down some the longer it sits in the glass plus more smoothing oiliness from the hops starts to emerge as well. Like the aroma, the alcohol adds some light warmth but seems like just the right amount for this beer, especially when dealing with a flavor profile that is this bitter.

This is one of the better Belgian IPAs that I've had lately. I loved how the yeast character and higher alcohol content were present but not overly so and nicely complimented the full West Coast hop profile on this. This style can be really hit or miss for me sometimes but this one hit the sweet spot. Thanks again for sending this one along Kev!

Photo of cannabanaceae
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice frothy head, Golden in color. Awesome Label!

When I first opened this bottle, it was very fruity and hoppy smelling. As I poured it into the glass, the belgium yeast smell came through loud and clear dominating the smell.

Taste was very bitter with a nice amount of malt sweetness. The hop fruitiness seems to clash with the belgium yeast strain. Bitterness lingers in your mouth. Some alcohol present. Mouthfeel was tart.

The drinkability is pretty good/OK on this one, taste change (in a good way) as it warms. Worth a try, a little pricey. One and done for me.

Photo of Docer
4.23/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Snagged up a bottle at By The Bottle here in Vancouver, WA,,,

- Cloudy yellow and golden glowing Belgian orange... nice light creamy pillow of head quickly down to a hefty ring and thin layer.

- Grainy, zesty citrus, lemon, grassy hops. Biscuity and lightly sweet. Liking that it doesn't smell too sweet. I don't care for sweet IPA's.. I like them dry.. Some banana yeast.. clove..

- Zesty citrus punch to the palate. Orange, lemon zesty. Lots of grassy herbal hops... biscuit malt. Banana yeast and some sweet brown sugar... pine hops... almost a strong iced-tea note.

- Medium bodied, slightly creamy.. dry.. slightly chewy..

- Overall a very good beer. I love the bitterness and citrus punch... a very high ranker for me because it isn't overly sweet.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from 5/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Nice translucent orange pour with a thick, white head. Hop and light fruit aroma. Piney hops and light fruit start with hoppy middle and end. Medium creamy body. Lightly sweet and the fruits are more balanced and less citric than other IPAs. Nicely done and enjoyable.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.23/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

hazy orange color on the pour with a small, minimal head that did not produce much at all in the way of lacing. nice carbonation could be seen throughout the session.

aroma is loaded with light citrus and fruity tones that are layered on a lightly spice belgian yeast. really quite nice and very light and clean. crisp and clean taste here as each sip seemed to play off the one before it, again very well done and i was more then pleased with this. light orange, pineapple and tangerine all came together quite well and the light feel and smooth, medium dry finish sealed the deal.

Photo of jeffjeff1
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up about two weeks ago at Monument Wines and Spirits.

Appearance- golden amber color, thick foamy head

Smell- floral and fruity hops, yeast

Taste- floral hops, bitterness

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- I thought it was really good. I would definitely buy it again.

Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft at Gourmet Haus Staudt. Golden-amber with slight haze and a dense white head. Phenolic, spicy nose backed by citrusy west coast hops. Little bit of bubblegum, pear, grapefruit - pretty damn nice. Good balance of Belgian yeast and American hop flavors; peppery phenols, grapefruit and bitter orange peel. Touch of alcohol in the finish with a huge bitter kick. Pretty damn good - intensely bitter as usual with Midnight Sun, but balanced by some great flavors.

Photo of Xul
4.12/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an extremely effervescent and translucent golden, capped by two and a half fingers of foamy, off-white head. Retention is good as it settles slowly, leaving light lacing behind.

S: Citrusy hops with a big burst of lemon zest, along with some earthy character. Grain base in the background along with lots of light fruits - green apples and light grapes, with a light dose of Belgian yeastiness.

T: Citrusy hops up front again with lemon zest, grapefruit and orange, along with some earthy notes and very light pine. The Belgian character is evident near the backend but a bit muted compared to the nose. Long, pleasantly bitter finish.

M: Medium bodied with moderate but very active carbonation.

D: Alcohol isn't particularly evident, one of the better Belgian IPAs I've had.

Photo of Reswald
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Sampled on tap at the brewery.

In the glass the beer was lovely; where most of Midnight Sun's previous IPAs (Sockeye Red, CoHoHo, Gluttony) have been deep copper or darker in color, Mayhem is a beautiful deep gold. It had a nice white head, and a great hop aroma. Tasting it, you are immediately smacked by the 100 IBUs of bitterness from loads of American hops. Once your palate gets over the shock, the peppery, spicy elements from the Belgian yeast start to make themselves felt. At 8.2% ABV this beer is much too strong to be a session beer, not to mention there no way your palate could survive a sustained assault from all those IBUs. But if you're a hop head like me, you will absolutely love this beer.

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

Pours out a cloudy golden blond with a heavy white blanket of head. Great retention.

A funky Belgian yeast dominates the aroma. Beyond that there's some pithy hops and and that Summit hop onion smell overlying pale malt. Also a little fermented fruit in there.

Two words. Bitter & dry. Sour white grapefruit peel and maybe a little pear are about the exent of what I can discern. The overpowering bitterness makes it difficult to pick up much else. Needs more malt and sweetness. Capped with a long bitter finish.

Smooth body with a full, frothy mouthfeel. Lots of carbonation, but fairly smooth.

Overall, this beer had some nice qualities but the flavor was too one-dimensional. Given my previous experience with Midnight Sun, I have to wonder how well it's held up through shipping. I know this bottling's not that old and it's a Belgian IPA, but am guessing the lack of depth may be a result of some of the hop flavors deteriorating. This might be your thing if you're one who likes straight up, brutally tongue lashing bitterness....

Thanks for the generous hook-up Toby!

Photo of Bubba83
3.84/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip at about 45 degrees.

Peach colored body with quick rising tiny bubbles from the bottom of the glass. Poured carefully and still ended up with a four finger width bright white rocky head. It seems impossible for the head not to stick onto the sides of the glass, which makes the lacing and retention quite incredible.

The aroma is a little mellow for me overall. It's all a bit, well, indescript... I get some black pepper, hay, funk, and maybe a little citrus, but it's all kind of jumbled up. Still, it's pleasant enough.

The flavor is quite good despite the average aroma. Tastes a lot like apple juice at first, with a nice hit of sweetness. This fades into tropical fruits, nice notes of pineapple and mango. Finishes up with spice and funk from the malt and yeast. The interplay of tropical fruit, funk, spice, and citrus are my favorite part about Belgian IPAs, and this one has it.

The consistency seems dead on, nice medium body with lots of oilyness, yet good carbonation. The head is nice and inviting, a very creamy foam.

Drinks pretty well. I've had the whole bomber now and it was mildly refreshing even. I find Belgian IPAs to be more refreshing than others because of the balance of sweet tropical fruits. This beer reminded me a lot of the 3767 collaboration beer they made with Ballast Point. The thing is though, the hop profile was better in that one and it also achieved more complexity from the oak wine barrels as well. If I hadn't already had 3767, this beer may have been pretty eyeopening, but unfortunately, it's just a reminder of 3767, which in my eyes is a better beer. Definitely one to seek out and try if you can't get your hands on a 3767.

Photo of womencantsail
3.36/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to Bobby for this one. This is essentially a remake of Wrath, so it was interesting to try both side-by-side.

A: The pour is a standard orangish-amber color with a finger's worth of white head.

S: A very herbaceous and almost woody nose. Certainly quite pungent but seems to be lacking the typical hop aromas and a strong note of rosemary overwhelms everything else.

T: The strong herbal note that was present in the nose does not translate to the flavor (perhaps thankfully). The hops provide a very sharp and nearly harsh bitterness. Some oranges and a bit of fruity esters to try to balance things out.

M: Medium bodied with a moderate carbonation and a bitterness that really sticks around.

D: Overall, I much preferred Wrath to this, although it was a bit past its prime. The bitterness was a bit too sharp for me and the nose I did not find all that appealing.

Photo of portia99
4.41/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle received in trade with chickencoop. Big thanks for this one! Poured into a Portsmouth tulip.

A - A vigorous pout yields a mostly clear orange body with a huge three fingers (that almost escaped the glass, but retained its shape and left a cylinder of foam over the top of the glass) of dense just off from white foam with excellent holding power and leaves behind tons of gorgeous sticky lacing on the glass. A constant 1/2 finger of foam lingers throughout the glass. A simply beautiful looking beer.

S - Spicy Belgian yeast character with cloves and cinnamon and some nice citrusy fruit - oranges and especially lemons. Tough to tell exactly where the citrus is derived from...yeast or hops. I'm guessing its a bit of both. Small touch of alcohol wafts through and finishes things off nicely.

T - Very hoppy up front. Tons of spicy flavor with these hops and mixed in very well with citrus and pine contributions as well. Good, full malty base to this beer - a bit of toffee, a bit of bread, a little sugar, tons of body. Great combination of flavors. Really loving these Americanized Belgian (D)IPA's. Bastardized style maybe, but I applaud whoever came up with this idea. Quite similar overall to the Stone Cali-Belgique...another great one.

M - Quite nice...fairly full bodied and silky smooth. Has a creaminess to it that I'm really liking. A bit of alcohol warmth creeps in to give an added aspect to the feel. This beer just seems to glide over the tongue and into the swallow.

D - Another winner from Midnight Sun for me. Haven't had a bad one yet! Really flavorful, hoppy (American style) Belgian IPA. Really think this is becoming one of my favorite styles. Love the way the hops play off of the spicy character from the Belgian yeast. Really great stuff. Wish I could get more of this one.

Photo of JayQue
3.46/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pretty average Belgian IPA. Looks good. Pours a hazy orange color with a big delicately bubbling white head. Lacing is minimal. Head retention is pretty good.

Smell is minimal. A little fruit Apples and pears, some yeasty type aroma. Very mild.

Taste is somewhat better. Fruit, mild belgian yeast, some grapefruit hoppiness. THe flavors blend fairly well together.

Mouthfeel is rich, hoppy bite and a light alcohol bite as well.

Overall, a fairly good drink but not a top of the line Belgian IPA.

Photo of John_M
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The GF picked up a bottle of this for me some months ago, and I figured it was high time I cracked it open.

The beer pours a fairly dark, solid gold color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is just flat out exotic, as I pick up light honey, light pine, dry citrus, a hint of sandlewood, banana and vanilla. This smells pretty terrific, actually... The flavor profile replicates the nose, and reminds me very much of the Chouffe houblon. If anything, it's a bit sweeter, is a bit hoppier and bitter, and has even more spice. Although moderately sweet, the hoppy bitterness really comes on strong on the finish, and completely dries it out. This is a Belgian style DIPA on steroids. Mouthfeel is actually a bit lean, but I think that enhances this beer's drinkability. This beer delivers just a huge mouthfull of flavor, and I'm not sure I could handle it if the beer was full and viscuous. Otherwise, the finish is long, rich and intensely bitter. Alcohol is well integrated into the flavor profile I guess, though given the amount of flavor and hoppy bitterness, it would be pretty hard to pick up any heat from alcohol.

Quite impressive... I'd be hard put to think of a better Belgian style DIPA I've had recently (if at all).

Photo of froghop
3.83/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a hazy orange-amber with a large egg-shell head, and great lacing.

smell is of fruits (apricot and pear), malt, a touch of floral, and citrus.

taste is of hops, grass, dandelion, grapefruit, malt, and a touch of malt, ends nicely bitter.

overall a very nice belgian IPA.

Photo of notchucknorris
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Pizza Port Carlsbad

A: Pours a dark orange color with a one finger cream colored head that shows good retention.

S: Huge grapefruit aromas. There are smells of juicy grapefruit as well as candied grapefruit. Beautiful. Some floral hops as well as a mild spiciness and a bit of barnyard funk.

T: Smooth beginning with a bit of hop sourness and then a slam of citrus hops and white pepper. Malts and a bit of belgian yeast in the background keep the hops somewhat in check. This is by far the best Belgian style IPA I've ever had.

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Mayhem - Belgian-Style Double IPA from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 85 ratings.