Midnight Project #3 Oxymoron - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Midnight Project #3 OxymoronMidnight Project #3 Oxymoron

Educational use only; do not reuse.

91 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 91
Reviews: 65
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 13.07%
Wants: 1
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mavajo on 08-25-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

India Pale Lager
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 91 | Reviews: 65
Reviews by bernardus1212:
Photo of bernardus1212
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served this one up after work. Poured into a ommegang footed-pilsener glass. Nice Cooper color, very clear as well. Thin white head that dissolved pretty quick. Nose is fun, Hoppy citrus alittle floral with some toasty malts and a bit of sweetness.Taste is very light. I guess they called this an Oxymoron for a reason. Pale ale in the beginning with toasty lager at the end. Not much different to a Sam Adams to be honest. EH. I guess so

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.6/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured at the Mellow Mushroom from a bomber into a stadard pint glass a slight chill hazed copper with a thinner but well sustained white head.Vienna lager-like aromas in my opinion,caramel malt with a bit of spicy/herbal hop,the alcohol sweetness shows thru a little as the beer warms.A little thinner than expected in the mouthfeel department,not quite watery but nowhere near it should be.Sweet caramel doughiness is the main flavor component that I picked up,light herbal hops in the finish,again the alcohol sweetness does creep a little.Not a real bad beer, and its a bit different but not worth the hefty price tag it commands.

Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
2.58/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Cloudy yellow/copper pour with little head to speak of. Decent white lace. The nose is a bit acidic and metally. It even has a little stale water aroma to it. There is a bit of malt sweetness to the aroma when I take a huge deep breath inside of the glass. Nice hop bitterness upfront but anticlimactic on the finish, dry and bland. As I drink it gets sweeter and more metalic on my tongue. A little thin in body and a lingering bitterness at the back of my pallet is a very unwelcome attribute. I may have a little trouble finishing the bottle. Um, not a fan. I am left wanting more yeast and grass from my pils, maybe a little lemon and understanding that a lot of IPs tend to up their hop content this one fell a little short. I really wanted to like this as I have really come to adore the style, but I just don't feel they represented the style well at all.

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 3-18-10.
22oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass. A bright, clear red/orange color. Small, off-white head. A little bit of lace.
Citrus aroma. Sweet malt. Kind of outdoorsy.
Grapefruit taste mostly. Some other citrus. Biscuity.
A very hoppy beer. Not very pilsner-like.
Still, a decent beer to drink.

Photo of Beaver13
2.54/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle. Pours a clear light copper amber with a medium forthy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet slightly corny malts, and metallic perfumey hops.

The flavor is sweet slightly vegetal malts with a good amount of bitterness in the finish - perfumey and slightly tarry hops. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied and a bit watery.

Overall, not too impressive. Kind of a sub-par imperial pils. I was hoping for a lot more American hops with a lager base.

Photo of glid02
3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours a clear golden color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of crisp light malts with good amounts of bitter, earthy hop aromas. As the beer warms mild amounts of buttery diacetyl waft in and out.

Tastes smoother than it smells. Smooth light malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by earthy hop flavors. Midway through the sip the hop flavors turn slightly spicy and slight amounts of diacetyl flavors come into play. The diacetyl quickly fades out before allowing the hops to carry through to a crisp lager finish.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass quickly and could have another without any problems.

Overall this was better than I was expecting, a flavorful yet subtle beer in a style that doesn't get much press. Worth a shot.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.22/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a strange)
Bottled 8.18.10
A- This beer pours a reddish-copper body that is crystal clear with a sea of microbubbles racing to a thick creamy antique white head that last a good bit.

S- The sweet aroma of dry caramel, honey malt and raw grain has some biscuit malt notes that come through as it warms. This beer was fragrant even during the pour and has a nice complexity

T- The dry Munich and caramel malt flavor have an orange flavor that finishes with a pungent Noble hop finish that lingers for a moment in the dry finish. As the beer opens there is a light lemon herbal flavor to the hops in the finish.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a crisp finish and a tight little fizz.

D- The bright crisp flavors of layers of malt are complimented by some good hops with some nice depth as well. This drinks like a session beer and hides the alcohol well.

Photo of nickthegun12
3.4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

the smell is nonexistent ...the taste is like a lager....except something is different...different than a steam beer...on the front end the taste is good....musky and funky...on the back end pretty bitter....but the bitter is rounded and not sharp...pretty good beer

Photo of GilGarp
3.47/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled 08/18/2010.

22oz. bottle served cold into a pint glass.

Oxymoron is a crystal clear golden orange with thick creamy head. Good retention and some lace left behind.

Aroma is nice and a citrusy, bright hops, fresh.

Flavor is a little strange as it seems to have the hoppiness of an IPA but the lager yeast (if that's what I'm tasting) doesn't really meld. Maybe it's just a strange malt bill but it has too much caramel, bready, pudding-like sweetness that the hops don't even really balance it out.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and low in carbonation.

Overall not a fantastic beer but different. I think the latter is really what they were going for here. Unusual, different, but not that good.

Photo of cjgator3
3.61/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle

A- Pours a very nice golden amber color with an off-white head with good retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is some faint pale malts with some hops. I'm a little underwhelmed by the nose, hopefully the taste is more flavorful.

T- The taste does impress more than the nose. There is some malts up front with a nice dose of bitterness (grapefruit) from the hops in the finish.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, I enjoyed this one but it didn't really blow ms away. A decent beer but probably not something I'd buy again. Worth a try.

Photo of prototypic
3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Oxymoron pours a very clear copper color. Backlighting gives it a slight garnet tint. A creamy, off-white head caps it. It's nearly two fingers tall and recedes slowly. Lacing is definitely sticky, but moderate in terms of volume. Not bad.

The nose is interesting. It kicks off with a sweet, caramel malt scent. They're followed by a rather strong hop aroma. They're floral, and perhaps a bit piney. Very noble-esque. I don't know what the hop bill consists of, but that'd be my guess. There's an interesting mix of spices that emerges late. Alcohol is blended well and isn't too strong. Eh. It's okay. Interesting, but just okay.

The flavor is a little better than the nose. Enough to warrant a score bump. It is very sweet initially. Caramel/toffee flavors are rather strong throughout, but do provide a sturdy, flavorful base. They are complemented by a blend of floral and spicy hops. They do seem noble in character to me, but I don't know that for sure. It's a little bitter, but is balanced to a large degree by the malts. Alcohol is blended pretty well, and isn't much of a factor. It finishes sweet, a little bitter, and very dry.

Oxymoron has a body that's on the light side of medium. Given the substantial amount of malty sweetness, I'm surprised it feels so thin. More body would be good. Drinkability is above average. The flavor's pretty good, but gets a little old. A bomber's probably a little much.

Oxymoron is an interesting concept that is pretty good beer. I've never had an India Pale Lager before. It's alright, but isn't a great success. It's a little too sweet and balanced for my taste. Less malts might be a step in the right direction. It's worth a try, but that's probably about it. Stick with a single bomber.

Photo of Mavajo
3.57/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

The label classifies this as an "India Pale Lager" - so kind of a crapshoot on the style here. American IPA? Pilsener? Since none of the current descriptions exactly fit, I'm not going to waste my time agonizing over the decision.

Pours a brilliant amber with a moderate off-white head. Modest lacing.

The aroma is loaded with floral and herbal notes - mostly floral. There's also a character there that reminds me of brand new sneakers - take that for what you will...I'm not even sure what to make of that myself. The taste brings much of the same floral and herbal notes, with a a medicinal, hop bitterness along the sides of the palate. The lager yeast makes for a very crisp taste, but I found the aroma more enjoyable than the flavor. Aftertaste lingers for a while on the palate.

Mouthfeel is spot-on. Medium bodied with brisk carbonation that helps to emphasize the flavor profile.

All in all, an interesting brew. I'm glad to have tried it, but I think one is enough.

Photo of Kegatron
3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle into a couple of pint glasses.

Pours a crystal clear copper, with a rich frothy finger of off-white head. This retains well, with a robust foamy flare-up that leaves a good bit of spotty lacing behind. The aroma is grassy and citric, with a fair it of spiciness happening, as a peppery push of flavor sits in front of some tight malty notes of caramel and bread. I'm digging it for the most part.

The taste is bitter with leafy green citrus flavors that are backed by a smooth malt backbone of grains and some slightly caramelized sweetness. A bit of a grassy feel sits on the edges of the profile. The spiciness of the hops definitely carries over from the nose and sticks in the finish along with some dry bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and generally easy feeling, with a silky crispness that glides along in the mouth. That 7% ABV is very nicely hid as well. I would have never guessed it was that high.

This was certainly interesting; with both IPA and Lager characteristics pulling this in both directions. I guess ultimately I enjoyed the smooth Lager body on this but I wish that the IPA flavors had been maybe a bit more forceful (since this is the way that the flavor profile seemed to be mostly directed). Maybe this was a bit underwhelming considering that I really enjoyed the last two collaborations between these breweries. I guess you can't knock them all out of the park but this was still decent.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.46/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled 6-18-10. Consumed 12-03-10.

A: A flat weathered orange has a frothy 1 finger head that displayed very good retention. Inside a small steady stream of tightly knitted micro-bubbles make their way upward. The lacing is thick and bready with a 90% glass coverage. A lager with a rustic color and well retaining head should garnish some extra merit here.

S: The nose is a mixture of its 6 different kinds of hops. Unfortunately the combination is more of a hodge-podge rather then individual merit. A mixture of wet grass, moist orange-peels and chives are present. Fresh wet pine needles can be detected underneath. Definitely a decent amount of hoppage for a lager style, though muddled for the most part. Half the hops would of made more of an individual distinction.

T: Kinda strange first impression. Spicy citrus with a flowery edge comes through with a good amount of bitterness on the finish. Pine and floral notes with some alcohol warmth and stale grains are also about. The hops are bitter on the swallow but again the hodge-podge contraption and overuse of different varieties moot each other out with a light stale malt support.

M: Light bodied, some stale citrus and alcohol can be had on the tongue. Turns creamy and washy on longer holds with a soft carbonation (aka lacks the lager crispness).

D: When I think of lager, I think cool, refreshing with a distinct crispness, easy on the take. When I think India pale ale I think bitter but also crisp and refreshing on a hot summer day. This beer seems to have captured the assertive bitterness of the ipa but the crisp lager likeness gets lost in the combination making it hardly distinguishable. Aptly named though not aptly suited for repeatability.

Photo of emerge077
3.44/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice jewel-tone orange, deep saturated color. Fluffy cap of foam that stays around for a bit. Sticky crest of lacing arcs around the glass, retaining some dimension. A thick ring of foam remains around the edge of the liquid, while a wispy skim floats on the surface.

Sweet malty nose, initially a little skunky from noble hops. Later a swirl brings out dry floral aromatics, a little bit perfumey.

Medium bodied with some bitter citrus peel, and dry weedy notes. Fleeting malt sweetness in the form of crispbread or crackers. Bitter citrus tea. Dry bitterness lingers in the back of the throat, like after eating a raw dandelion. Carbonation is ok, but the jarring dandelion bitterness building in the finish doesn't really jive with the beer as a whole. Something I can finish, but not hoping for a repeat brewing of this one.

Time may have faded this some, unfortunately the stamped date was smudged on all the bottles at the store. "~ 18 10" (can't make out the 1st digit, probably an 8 or 9, judging from the earliest reviews here...making this brew 2-3 months old).

Photo of EgadBananas
3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Slightly hazy, nice orange/copper color, with a 2+ finger, soy milk colored head. Lacing is great.

Aroma is slightly sweet, with some predominant malts. There are some backing hops, mainly citrus or tropical fruits.

This is definitely unique to me, and a bit hard to describe. It's fairly malty, and crisp, with some citrus, and a hint of spice. There is a bit of alcohol lingering on the finish.

Feel is rather creamy, lower in carbonation. Upper light in body.

Pretty average drinkability.

Overall unique, and interesting take on the style, but I've definitely had much better before.

Photo of jsanford
3.18/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a Pint Glass.

Pours a dark orange-amber with a thin, creamy off-white head that settles to a thin haze. Subdued aromas of crisp pilsner malt with some slightly pungent grassy hops. Taste is again sweet malt with some grassy, piney hops and a long bitter finish. Not bad. Fairly slick mouthfeel, with a medium body and moderate carbonation. Overall, not a bad brew, but tasted like a run-of-the-mill DIPA, not some special "Imperial Pilsner".

Photo of Ambiorix
3.01/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear copper pour, foamy, rather fast fading light tan head.

S: Bready, slightly sweet caramel malt, slightly floral with little hop character.

T: Caramel malt, very grassy hops, a little too astringent in the finish without any real hop character. Bitter, medicinal aftertatse.

M: A little thick but balanced with a fair amount of carbonation.

D: Oxymoron may be an apt moniker, as this brew can't seem to make up its mind as to what it wants to be. It seems neither pilsner-like nor pale ale-like. Not a bad beer, but not one I'll try again.

Photo of generalnotsew
2.96/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours very dark amber typical of most IPA's weak head at first but it did finally grow to a decent size. Smell is faint bitter sweet corn malts. Not strong but it is a nice clean smell. Taste is fairly odd. Quite a pungent sweetness upfront with a strange out of place kind of bitterness following up. Carbonation and mouthfeel is quite weak. Very oily and thin. Can't say I could drink a lot of it but it isn't that bad. I usually love my bitterness but it really does seem oddly out of place here.

Photo of CBlack85
3.27/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Smuttynose big beer balloon glass.

The beer pours a very clear orange/copper color with about two fingers worth of light foamy off white head that recedes quickly and leaves quite a bit of lacing behind.

The aroma is sweet and malty with a nice piney hop presence to maintain balance. Lots of caramel malts and floral & piney hops. Very nice

The taste is not nearly as balanced as the nose. While all of the sweet caramel malts in the aroma are there in the taste, the hops are overly bitter and biting. The beer is medium/light bodied and finishes dry.

Over all the beer is not bad, it is more hop forward than I would expect with a lager, but they do classify it as a "India Pale Lager", in which case it seems to fit the bill.

Photo of obywan59
4.01/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle. Bottled June 18, 2010. A collaboration between Left Hand and Terrapin. They call it a Teutonic India Pale Lager on the label.

Pours a nice light amber color with a 3 1/2 finger chunky white head leaving moderate lacing. Almost transparent with decent amount of carbonation bubbles early on.

Smells like biscuits with honey at first. Very nice. After I started drinking it however, I got more of a funky smell reminiscent of slightly rotted cabbage. More pleasant piney aromas develop as the beer warms. more of a hop presence.

At first, the taste was overbalanced to the bitter side. The bitterness not being all that pleasant. As the beer warmed though, the sweetness rose to balance the bitterness and the taste was much improved.

Moderate mouthfeel. lightly carbonated.

Halfway through this beer I never would have thought I would give it a 4.5 for drinkability, what with the secondary aroma of rotting cabbage and the initial unpleasant bitterness, but both flavor and aroma greatly improved as the beer warmed. Aroma went from a 4 or 4.5 down to a 2.5 and back up. Taste went from a sub 3 back to a 4. Like a good movie, bringing you down and then lifting you up in the end.

Maybe that's why they called it Oxymoron. Contradictory aromas. Contradictory tastes. It was a very entertaining beer.

Photo of weeare138
3.13/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appears a transparent light gold with a small white head that quickly fades into a mild collar. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of light herbs, cut wood, and mild bits of corn and butter.
Taste is buttered popcorn, light herbs, fresh bread and citrus.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, bitter, doughy, and smooth
Reminded me of a lagered Whitbread.

Photo of claspada
3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Aromas are quite lager-tastic. Heavier on the pilsner and biscuit malt with some caramel and some lighter floral and earthy hops.

The taste follows the nose with caramel and lighter specialty grains and some sweet biscuity bread. It is then followed by some grassy hops and finishes with a nice pleasant bitterness. I have to say though there is an odd something I can't pick out which is really preventing me from fully enjoying this beer. There's too much of one kind of malt, but I can't pick it out.

The mouthfeel is medium-to-thick bodied but also crisp and smooth; mid level carbonation.

Overall this a weird beer; I'd enjoy it more if the hop profile was a little more crisp and not just characterized by a lasting bitter. Not bad, but not worth the $10 price tag I paid for it.

Photo of JayS2629
3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer lives up to its name. It is confusing. Its called a teutonic india pale lager, and I guess that is what it taste like.

A- Translucent honey color with a thick foamy head that leaves nice lacing.

S- Confusing. I swear the first smell was hops and the second had no hops only caramel malts. The more I drank it the more dominant the hops were on the nose. Sweet smells of toffee and pine.

T- caramel malts with earthy tones of grass. Hints of citrus. Hoppy finish. Confusing. Is this a pilsner with hops? A pale ale? A lager? An IPA? It taste like all of them.

M- Crisp, toasty, and mellow. Nice light body.

D- Refreshing and confusing. It was a fun brew that lived up to its name.

Photo of superdedooperboy
4.03/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22-ounce brown glass bottle poured into a footed pilsner glass. Bottled On date is printed on the label, but due to smearing is difficult to discern.

Deep amber in color with a perfect clarity, showing off a small-but-steadfast head of slightly off-white foam that is fed by a constant stream of CO2, leaving behind some thick, full sheets of lace along the walls of the glass as it fades.

Nose is quite hoppy yet distinctly noble in its character, floral and grassy, a touch spicy, somewhat subdued yet wholly enticing.

Light-to-medium-bodied, smooth in mouthfeel, with a touch of prickly carbonation dancing on the tongue. The flavors are quite reminiscent of the aroma, with loads of spicy and grassy hop character and a big, drying bitterness that carries through into the finish and lingers long afterward. A solid grain-accented malt base hangs in the background throughout, keeping things balanced.

Quite delicious, this Germanic-influenced play on the IPA is a wonderful showcase of very traditional ingredients taken to a much more adventurous level. Drinkability is equally superb; downing an entire 22-ounce bottle is far from a chore. Certainly recommended.

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Midnight Project #3 Oxymoron from Left Hand Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 91 ratings.