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Challenger Single Hop IPA | Mikkeller ApS

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Challenger Single Hop IPAChallenger Single Hop IPA

Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by vandemonian on 06-20-2011

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Reviews: 26 | Ratings: 59
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Eh. This doesn't really work for me. Too one dimensional, which I guess makes sense since it's a single hop beer and all. I suppose this is the danger that single hopped IPAs can fall into - the one dimensional pitfall. This is a mash of soggy hop spices and malts that don't really seem to be able to separate from each other and show anything interesting. A decent enough drinker, but hardly interesting.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma is full of caramel and orange citrus notes, as well as something that resembles circus peanuts.

The flavor is different. I get a lot of orange citrus notes, but I also get some toffee and grass notes. The bitterness is fairly low for an IPA.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of avalon07
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an orange color and a hazy consistency. Some light sediment. There was a big, creamy, long-lasting head. Outstanding lacing.

S: A very hoppy smell here, with some citrus as well.

T: Tasted of hops, with a little grapefruit and some malt thrown in. The hops presence was a bit too harsh and unbalanced. Not a bad flavor, but somewhat unbalanced.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a slightly slick finish. Medium-bodied.

O: Like most of Mikkeller's myriad of IPAs, this one easy to drink and well made.

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Photo of drpimento
3.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I didn't know Challenger was that floral until now. Poured with a nice, fine, off white head and good lace. Color is a clear medium amber. Aroma is fresh, floral hop, caramel, malt. Flavor is the floral hop up front, not much sweetness and lots of lingering bitterness. Body is good and carbonation is too. Finish is exactly like flavor and has plenty of duration. I don't think I'd want to do too many of these; a bit too bitter.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.62/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours orangey amber with a small head.
Nose shows orange marmalade, earthy and herbal hops along with some caramel in the background.
Flavours include some earthy, spicy hops with a fair bit of sweet clean malt underneath.
Could use a lighter body.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy copper with a pillowy, puffy white head.

S: Gentle on the nose with aromas of pepper, leather, tobacco, citrus, and moist earth. There is a slight caramel edge to the scent from the malt.

T: Pleasant notes of caramel, biscuits, leather, tobacco, lemon, grapefruit, and pepper gently wash across the palate. The finish is astringent with citrus notes coming across most strongly.

M: Like all of the other beers in this series, this ale is medium bodied, firm, and relatively dry. Drinkable for the style.

O: This is a nice IPA, but could stand to be a little better balanced. The finish is a bit harsh and medicinal, but otherwise, this is one I could easily revisit.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cap numbered 8281103! Served from bottle into Stone nonic. Poured yellow-orange with a two finger off-white head that subsided to one finger slowly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, subtle roasted malt, subtle dark chocolate, caramel, and caramel hop. The flavor was of sweet malt, dark chocolate, caramel, caramel hop, and slight bitter hop. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. Nothing on this one really kept me wanting more of it like some of the other Mikkeller Single Hop brews. The aroma came across as this being a very roasty hop. The flavor confirmed this fact with the subtle roasty flavors and sweetness I picked up on. Worth trying if only for palate development.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into tulip.
Nice amber orange haze with a good head and lacing.
Smells of malts and hops. English malts to be ecxact.
Tastes of english malts and hops. Slight caramel notes. Overall, not a big fan...no much english malts to really enjoy.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
3.76/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2 fl oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. My third beer from the Mikkeller Single Hop series. Expectations are fairly high, based on my experience with the other two.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter glass.

A - Pours two fingers of creamy fluffy beige colored head. Body is a dark burnt sienna orange with some dark yeast sediment floating around near the bottom. Thins to a fluffy ring & some foam with trace amounts of lace. Looks very nice.

S - Smell is leafier and hoppier than the other two I've tried, but not by much. Faint caramel malts, wood, dried leaves, some Belgian yeast, and little else. I'm pretty hard pressed to find any distinct aroma from the challenger hops.

T - Taste is nice, but much in the same vain as the others. Earthy twiggy hop character and caramel malts, paired nicely with a touch of Belgian yeast.

M - Feel is smooth and creamy, with just a tad higher carbonation than the one I tried yesterday, Mikkeller Sorachi Ace. Little earthiness lingering on the palate.

Overall, I'd say that challenger hops are one of the more subtle varieties out there, lending a more herbal / leafiness to the mix than bitterness. Probably the least memorable of the three I've tried so far, but still an outstanding way to showcase this unique variety of hop.

Mikkeller Challenger ---4/5.

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Photo of JayQue
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A nice, light (on in your face hoppiness) IPA, On ta ed but plesant, some mild hoppiness, a little toffee and some bready malts.

Tasted pretty good, mild, a nice complement with food. Good mild hops presence, a little hops bite, toffee and some bready malts. Nicely balanced.

Mouthfeel is rich and crisp. A little alcohol presence and some hops bite.

Overall, a bit subdued for an AIPA but a great complement with dinner.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
3.26/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Dogfish signature glass

A- pours a cloudy dark orange with a two finger offwhite head. Tons of tiny yeasty particles floating around. Lacing is solid

S- some very minimal citrus. It almost smells vegetal, to be honest

T- it starts off pretty mild, and the finish is some slightly sweet citrus....the bitterness comes back for the aftertaste. The overall flavor is good, but a little muted

M- thin body, which is a nice change of pace from many IPAs I've been drinking lately

O- it's not bad. It's not particularly great. It's just kind of there.

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Photo of Amalak
3.33/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It has almost a malty lager scent to it. there's a ton of sediment in it. A lot of foamy head and lacing. Dark copper tint.

This has a very wheaty taste. Strong alcohol to it. A bit of grape or dark fruit. There's not much of bitter hop taste. I'm not a huge fan if only because it taste more like a wheat.

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Photo of WastingFreetime
3.67/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Next in line from the single hop series.

Appearance is exactly the same as all the other ones in the series that I have tried so far : A deep orange color, slightly hazy with astounding levels of carbonation and deep fluffy head with insane lace. Even though the single hops series sometimes flops in taste and smell, somehow Mikkeller has nailed down this near-perfect head and appearance in each iteration of the series I've had.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and nicely silky in texture on my tongue. If there is anything to nitpick here, it is that perhaps the carbonation may be a wee bit too high for some folk's tastes.
And now we get to the only part that I find varies significantly in the single hop series: The taste and smell.
I smell a light earthy tone with faint peppery spice notes on top of the standard caramel malt. The lightest nuance of hop presence yet, and quite frankly almost boring. Tastes much of the same, but less boring because there is also a medium sized dollop of grassiness to the hop presence that is absent from the nose. And I don't mean skunkiness, as in cannaboids... No, what I mean is more akin to a field of fresh sweetgrass dappled with clover. And there is a severe lack of core bitterness to counterbalance the sweet malt, so much that it feels unfinished...just like others from the single hop series..

So overall Challenger seems to bring grassy herbals with a light peppery spice finish to the table. Nothing wrong with that, but one can easily see from this why it is often used as an bouquet addition on top of another hop variety which provides the core bittering.

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Photo of brewcrew76
3.43/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

IBU 51

A - Deep orange, light hazy copper with a fluffy off white head and huge streaks of lace.

S - Grainy malt, sweet caramel and grassy, earthy hops.

T - Sweet caramel, spicy, woody hops with some grassy and earthy notes.

M - Medium body.

D - I feel this one showcases the hop the best of the recent single hops I have tasted but maybe that is because I am not real familiar with this hop. A hop that needs a contribution from others.

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy, honey gold on the brownish side with a slight head that leaves a fine coat of lacing.

The Challenger hops have a light, orange aroma with caramel malt and some nuts in the background.

This one has modest bitterness and faint hop flavors, actually, quite faint. Overall, it is crisp with a light, short finish.

A full-bodied beer with some alcohol and a wooly texture. Ample carbonation helps the otherwise cleansing nature.

This was enjoyed as part of a self-training exercise to help distinguish hop varieties, but otherwise would be a fine component to a meal.

Challenger was sampled from a Harp nonic alongside the Citra Single Hop IPA.

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Photo of beerdrifter
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at my favorite beer store in Belgium, Dranken Geers. Clear yellow-amber pour with a two finger off-white head with great retention and lacing. Somewhat subdued earthy nose with hints of pine, caramel, toffee, and bready malt. The hops emerged a bit more in the taste, but were mostly piney and peppery with little to no citrus and just a bit of perfume. A solid malt backbone gets the nod over the hops on this one. Hints of toffee, caramel, tea, and tobacco round it out. Smooth and slightly creamy mouthfeel with a decent bitter tang on the finish. This was a solid beer, but it didn't highlight the hop as much as I had hoped.

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Photo of vandemonian
3.46/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this at ChurchKey where they had 10+ Mikkeller single hop IPAs. It was interesting to taste the characteristics of this hop without interference from other hop types. Having done so, I learned the reason why it is not a common single-hop IPA.

A: Orange color and 3 mm head that fades to good lacing. 4

S: It had a grainy, grass-like smell. Not especially strong or pleasant. 3

T: The taste was crisp and woody but quite mild. 3.5

M: Pretty thick and reasonably carbonated. 4

O: This may make a great base hop, but it was a little boring in isolation. 3.5

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Photo of q33jeff
3.43/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Mild Fruity, orange, almost pineapple, slight yeasty aroma. Orange color, cloudy. A lot of sediment, large white globules. Small Creamy head.Very refreshing. Alcohol is masked well. Light with a creamy finish.Smooth ,light feel. Very nice to drink. Carbonation is low, but this just feels right.A nice IPA.

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Photo of July2Nov
3.38/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Amber in color with some floaties in there. Nice frothy whit head.

Smell: Hops.

Taste & mouthfeel: the challenger hop is on display and that us pretty much it. Malt presence is ever so slight. Lighter in body.

Overall: Its an interesting concept but it's too one note for it to be memorable.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Body is amber gold, and a bit hazy, with a beige head that is foamy and leaves a bit of lacing.

Smell is medium roast malt, some toffee, citrus fruit, and spice.

This is more about the Challenger hops, which, on top of the malt structure, have a bit of a rye beer like spiciness, and citrusy tartness and toffee. Finishes a little bitter.

Body is medium and good carbonation, provides a slightly fizzy mouthfeel bordering on light creaminess.

Overall, it seems a good expression of the Challenger hops.

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Photo of StlHopHead77
3.03/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Pours out a nicely hazed,rusty orange body that sat beneath 2 fingers' worth of slowly dying,dusty white foam.Decent sticky waves of lacing.

S-Tart underripe citrus,biscuit flour,some mild floral notes and a hint of some white wine character.

T-Mild hop flavors of citrus,grass,parsley and cracker like malts.This seems like a hop destined for pale ale territory.

M-Light bodied with a fleeting and unassuming flavor profile and soft bitterness.Too mild for me.

O-Like I said,this is a hop better suited for a pale ale.

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Photo of TheQuietMan22
4.1/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving type: 330 ml bottle. A batch code is printed on the cap but there is no discernable freshness date.

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass. The color is cloudy orange/amber. Two fingers of fairly dense, buttery, eggshell-colored head dissipated to a billowy and spotted lacing, leaving tails of foam on the glass. A little sedimentation had collected in the grooves at the bottom of the bottle, but it was easily loosened.

Smell: It is mostly grassy/earthy, reminiscent of English pale ale, but it is tinged with orange citrus and lemon zest. It has its vinous moments but they are (thankfully) fleeting. There is a nice base of pale malts, caramel, and toffee.

Taste: Whoa — pretty good. Grassy hops, a little spice, orange and lemon citrus, exotic fruit, pale malts, caramel, and toffee. It also has that unpolished astringency to it.

Drinkability: Of the beers I have tried in the single-hop series, this edition the closest to being drinkable on a regular basis. I would definitely buy this one again.

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Photo of Digimaika2
3.74/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

(4.25) A: Cloudy peach colour with a very tall and impressive creamy and dense head. Very good retention with lacing that appears painted to the glass – Very nice.

(4.0) S: Floral notes, salted toffee, damp wood that comes across oak-like, orange rind, and a big bready backbone. An interesting aroma that I don’t find too pleasant but appreciate considering the uniqueness.

(3.5) T: Baked bread backbone, orange rind, wood, lighter floral elements, and underlying toffee. Fairly smooth with an unassuming bitterness and a subtle dryness. Bready taste is quite dominant.

(3.75) M: Fuller bodied with moderate carbonation. Slick and oily textured.

(3.75) D: The taste wasn’t my style with a heavy bread-like presence (reminds me of an English pale ale) but still remains a good IPA in my books. I’m really liking this Mikkeller series.

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

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass, from my notes:

A: orange brown with 2 fingers of head, thick lacing.

S: malty, with a hint of pineyness.

T: begins with a caramelly malt flavor, ends with pleasant bitterness, almost spicy.

M: Great carbonation, bitterness/spicness lingers on the back of my tongue.

O: A nice hop choice for this IPA.

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Photo of cradke
3.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Cloudy, Brown-Amber with some sediment. Incredible lacing and very fine, thick head.

Smell: Pleasant, sweet. Not overly hoppy

Taste: Hops at front with malt at the rear. The hops are not overpowering but have a very distinct pine taste. Little floral or citrus notes.

Mouth feel: Smooth and even. Slowly evolves across the palate. Carbonation comes through from the head and leaves a pleasant aftertaste.

Overall: While this beer isn't the best IPA I have ever had, it does a great job of showcasing the unique pine notes of the Challenger hops. A great beer to have for home brewers looking to improve their blends.

Serving: Bottle into Tulip

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Challenger Single Hop IPA from Mikkeller ApS
3.57 out of 5 based on 59 ratings.
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